Late-glacial and Holocene vegetation history and dynamics as shown by pollen and plant macrofossil analyses in annually laminated sediments from Soppensee, central Switzerland

Lotter, André F. (1999). Late-glacial and Holocene vegetation history and dynamics as shown by pollen and plant macrofossil analyses in annually laminated sediments from Soppensee, central Switzerland. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany, 8(3), pp. 165-184. Springer 10.1007/BF02342718

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The palynostratigraphy of two sediment cores from Soppensee, Central Switzerland (596 m asl) was correlated with nine regional pollen assemblage zones defined for the Swiss Plateau. This biostratigraphy shows that the sedimentary record of Soppensee includes the last 15 000 years, i.e. the entire Late-glacial and Holocene environmental history. The vegetation history of the Soppensee catchment was inferred by pollen and plant-macrofossil analyses on three different cores taken in the deepest part of the lake basin (27 m). On the basis of a high-resolution varve and calibrated radiocarbonchronology it was possible to estimate pollen accumulation rates, which together with the pollen percentage data, formed the basis for the interpretation of the past vegetation dynamics. The basal sediment dates back to the last glacial. After reforestation with juniper and birch at ca. 12 700 B.P., the vegetation changed at around 12 000 B.P. to a pine-birch woodland and at the onset of the Holocene to a mixed deciduous forest. At ca. 7000 B.P., fir expanded and dominated the vegetation with beech becoming predominant at ca. 50014C-years later until sometime during the Iron Age. Large-scale deforestation, especially during the Middle Ages, altered the vegetation cover drastically. During the Late-glacial period two distinct regressive phases in vegetation development are demonstrated, namely, the Aegelsee oscillation (equivalent to the Older Dryas biozone) and the Younger Dryas biozone. No unambiguous evidence for Holocene climatic change was detected at Soppensee. Human presence is indicated by early cereal pollen and distinct pulses of forest clearance as a result of human activity can be observed from the Neolithic period onwards.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

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:

Lotter, André F.

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

0939-6314

Publisher:

Springer

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

02 Jun 2016 10:42

Last Modified:

02 Jun 2016 10:42

Publisher DOI:

10.1007/BF02342718

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Vegetation dynamics, Palynology, Macroremains, Plant diversity, Laminated sediments, Climate change, Switzerland

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.82639

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/82639

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