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Did climate drive the human colonisation of the South Pacific? New evidence from Multi-proxy lake sediment records

Did climate drive the human colonisation of the South Pacific? New evidence from Multi-proxy lake sediment records
Did climate drive the human colonisation of the South Pacific? New evidence from Multi-proxy lake sediment records
The island archipelagos of the south pacific were among the last places colonised by humans. Debates exist over the precise timing of the arrival of people, and the duration of the “long pause” between arrival in Tonga and Samoa, and the move east into remote Polynesia. There is also a debate over the precise cause of the colonisation, with different scientific communities advocating climate, social unrest, population growth and a process of exploration. In part the debates have been caused by two issues; first the disparity between archaeological dates and those from other palaeoenvironmental archives, and secondly the absence of robust palaeoclimate records from the region. In this paper we report a new suite of multiproxy archives from Samoa and the southern Cook Islands that reconstruct both hydroclimate and human arrival using lake sediments. Use of short-lived materials for radiocarbon dating, brings lake dates in line with archaeologically derived estimates for the date of human arrival in both islands. Reconstructed hydroclimate from the same cores, point towards colonisation occurring during or shortly after major dry phases on Samoa, supporting arguments for a climatic forcing for the decision to migrate east into the pacific.
Sear, David
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Langdon, Peter
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Hassall, Jonathan
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Croudace, Ian
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Henderson, A.
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Mackay, Helen
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Gosling, W.
c76c2987-d062-49cc-9192-f3bd520798e4
Allen, M
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Morrison, L.
a3eb1b9f-cbf6-49e3-973e-b2b886e9c61e
Sear, David
ccd892ab-a93d-4073-a11c-b8bca42ecfd3
Langdon, Peter
95b97671-f9fe-4884-aca6-9aa3cd1a6d7f
Hassall, Jonathan
17b719cf-5b7b-496a-8bf7-96c57618baca
Croudace, Ian
24deb068-d096-485e-8a23-a32b7a68afaf
Henderson, A.
ba6bffbb-5528-4869-b5f4-a8c142a47b6c
Mackay, Helen
483b07c4-6dbb-49f9-abe5-b68aaa99e1f6
Gosling, W.
c76c2987-d062-49cc-9192-f3bd520798e4
Allen, M
c65d17b3-eec3-4bd2-b62b-19ca1e555224
Morrison, L.
a3eb1b9f-cbf6-49e3-973e-b2b886e9c61e

Sear, David, Langdon, Peter, Hassall, Jonathan, Croudace, Ian, Henderson, A., Mackay, Helen, Gosling, W., Allen, M and Morrison, L. (2018) Did climate drive the human colonisation of the South Pacific? New evidence from Multi-proxy lake sediment records. Asia Oceania Geosciences Society 15th Annual Meeting, Honolulu, United States. 03 Jun - 05 Aug 2018.

Record type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

Abstract

The island archipelagos of the south pacific were among the last places colonised by humans. Debates exist over the precise timing of the arrival of people, and the duration of the “long pause” between arrival in Tonga and Samoa, and the move east into remote Polynesia. There is also a debate over the precise cause of the colonisation, with different scientific communities advocating climate, social unrest, population growth and a process of exploration. In part the debates have been caused by two issues; first the disparity between archaeological dates and those from other palaeoenvironmental archives, and secondly the absence of robust palaeoclimate records from the region. In this paper we report a new suite of multiproxy archives from Samoa and the southern Cook Islands that reconstruct both hydroclimate and human arrival using lake sediments. Use of short-lived materials for radiocarbon dating, brings lake dates in line with archaeologically derived estimates for the date of human arrival in both islands. Reconstructed hydroclimate from the same cores, point towards colonisation occurring during or shortly after major dry phases on Samoa, supporting arguments for a climatic forcing for the decision to migrate east into the pacific.

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More information

Published date: 3 June 2018
Venue - Dates: Asia Oceania Geosciences Society 15th Annual Meeting, Honolulu, United States, 2018-06-03 - 2018-08-05

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 432459
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/432459
PURE UUID: 21f9e5c2-b662-434f-962d-bd8ed733f0ad
ORCID for David Sear: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0191-6179
ORCID for Peter Langdon: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-2724-2643

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 16 Jul 2019 16:30
Last modified: 12 Aug 2020 01:33

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