Palynological data provide an informative record of pteridophyte history because spores are sampled from habitats beyond the immediate area of deposition. This data complements macrofossil data about local fluvial and lacustrine taxa. Palynological data is recorded as dispersed spores and pollen in numerous Cretaceous studies of Australian and Antarctic sediments, bore cores and wells. Once compiled into a database these records can potentially form a large and comprehensive data set for examining patterns of pteridophyte biogeography and evolution during the Cretaceous. The Cretaceous North American palynofloras exhibit a decline in abundance and diversity of ferns that coincides with the evolution and later overwhelming floristic dominance of angiosperms. However, patterns of fern evolution have yet to be investigated for the Southern Hemisphere continents of Gondwana. We present the results of the analysis of Australian and Antarctic palynomorphs from over 100 references showing changes in fern abundance, diversity and distribution.

Key words: Antarctica, Australia, Cretaceous, palynology, pteridophyte