Modern pollen representation of the vegetation of the Tagus Basin (central Iberian Peninsula)

Morales-Molino, César; Devaux, Ludovic; Georget, Muriel; Hanquiez, Vincent; Sánchez Goñi, María F. (2020). Modern pollen representation of the vegetation of the Tagus Basin (central Iberian Peninsula). Review of palaeobotany and palynology, 276, p. 104193. Elsevier 10.1016/j.revpalbo.2020.104193

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The study of modern vegetation–pollen relationships has long been recognized as crucial for the proper interpretation of fossil pollen records. Despite the quickly growing number of palynological studies from central Iberia and its adjacent Atlantic margin, comprehensive studies about modern pollen representation at broad spatial scales were still lacking. In this paper, we have studied the vegetation–pollen relationships in the Tagus Basin in 62 sites located along a wide environmental gradient from Thermomediterranean evergreen mixed thermophilous woodlands by the Atlantic coast to Oromediterranean shrublands above the treeline in the Guadarrama Mountains (central Spain). At each site, we analyzed pollen from moss polsters and conducted vegetation surveys. Most forested vegetation types (pinewoods, oak woods, evergreen mixed thermophilous woodlands) presented rather distinct pollen assemblages dominated by the pollen equivalents of the major tree species. Nevertheless, enhanced taxonomic resolution within Pinus and Quercus ilex-type would represent significant progress, e.g., enabling to separate Mediterranean and mountain pinewoods. Pollen spectra from shrubland and steppic communities are in general less differentiated, due to high regional pollen input associated with low local pollen production and/or the dominance of insect-pollinated species (e.g., Cytisus oromediterraneus in mountain shrublands). The results presented here will readily assist the interpretation of regional fossil pollen records from small mires/bogs/lakes and forest hollows, given their comparable pollen catchments. Comparison of modern pollen assemblages with pollen records from larger lakes and marine settings is not so straightforward, but our results suggest that marine pollen assemblages might average the pollen signature of the entire basin.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Palaeoecology
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)

UniBE Contributor:

Morales del Molino, Cesar


500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)








Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

20 May 2020 12:28

Last Modified:

26 May 2020 08:05

Publisher DOI:





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