Long-term hydrological dynamics and fire history over the last 2000 years in CE Europe reconstructed from a high-resolution peat archive

Marcisz, Katarzyna; Tinner, Willy; Colombaroli, Daniele; Kołaczek, Piotr; Słowiński, Michał; Fiałkiewicz-Kozieł, Barbara; Łokas, Edyta; Lamentowicz, Mariusz (2015). Long-term hydrological dynamics and fire history over the last 2000 years in CE Europe reconstructed from a high-resolution peat archive. Quaternary Science Reviews, 112, pp. 138-152. Elsevier 10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.01.019

[img] Text
1-s2.0-S0277379115000438-main.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to registered users only
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (2MB) | Request a copy

Sphagnum peatlands in the oceanic-continental transition zone of Poland are currently influenced by climatic and anthropogenic factors that lead to peat desiccation and susceptibility to fire. Little is known about the response of Sphagnum peatland testate amoebae (TA) to the combined effects of drought and fire. To understand the relationships between hydrology and fire dynamics, we used high-resolution multi-proxy palaeoecological data to reconstruct 2000 years of mire history in northern Poland. We employed a new approach for Polish peatlands – joint TA-based water table depth and charcoal-inferred fire activity reconstructions. In addition, the response of most abundant TA hydrological indicators to charcoal-inferred fire activity was assessed. The results show four hydrological stages of peatland development: moderately wet (from ∼35 BC to 800 AD), wet (from ∼800 to 1390 AD), dry (from ∼1390 to 1700 AD) and with an instable water table (from ∼1700 to 2012 AD). Fire activity has increased in the last millennium after constant human presence in the mire surroundings. Higher fire activity caused a rise in the water table, but later an abrupt drought appeared at the onset of the Little Ice Age. This dry phase is characterized by high ash contents and high charcoal-inferred fire activity. Fires preceded hydrological change and the response of TA to fire was indirect. Peatland drying and hydrological instability was connected with TA community changes from wet (dominance of Archerella flavum, Hyalosphenia papilio, Amphitrema wrightianum) to dry (dominance of Cryptodifflugia oviformis, Euglypha rotunda); however, no clear fire indicator species was found. Anthropogenic activities can increase peat fires and cause substantial hydrology changes. Our data suggest that increased human fire activity was one of the main factors that influenced peatland hydrology, though the mire response through hydrological changes towards drier conditions was delayed in relation to the surrounding vegetation changes.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

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:

Marcisz, Katarzyna; Tinner, Willy and Colombaroli, Daniele

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

0277-3791

Publisher:

Elsevier

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

17 Sep 2015 13:15

Last Modified:

23 Dec 2016 08:35

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.01.019

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Palaeohydrology; Testate amoebae; Pollen; Fire history; Charcoal; Peatland; 2 ka; Poland

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.71701

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/71701

Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback