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Holocene climatic change and tree-line response in Leirdalen, central Jotunheimen, south central Norway

Holocene climatic change and tree-line response in Leirdalen, central Jotunheimen, south central Norway
Holocene climatic change and tree-line response in Leirdalen, central Jotunheimen, south central Norway
The provisional results of pollen analysis of a small mire (Leirdalen 5) provide evidence for long-term changes in forest composition and extent at and around the present day altitudinal tree-line in Leirdalen valley, south central Norway. Following deglaciation c. 10,115cal.yrbp, dense pine forest migrated into the area c. 9785cal.yrbp, replacing vegetation dominated formerly by birch. The pollen evidence suggests that Pinus sylvestris then expanded significantly in response to a warmer climate with summer temperatures ca. 1.5-2.0oC higher than present. This climatic optimum was probably interrupted by climatic deterioration c. 8380cal.yrbp (the Finse event), that caused woodland around Leirdalen 5 to retreat to lower altitudes. A sudden shift from dense pine forest to birch woodland with Pinus sylvestris and Alnus in conjunction with the development of a sub-alpine Betula belt is postulated to have occurred c. 6870cal.yrbp Since c. 4850cal.yrbp a general decrease in woodland extent due to further climatic deterioration and increased human impact is evident.
tree-line, sub-alpine birch belt, climatic optimum, norway, finse event
0034-6667
119-137
Barnett, Catherine
9b12df98-005b-4aa5-a9d9-3aa0b2c7b398
Dumayne-Peaty, Lisa
8cf0713e-65f7-4291-b2e5-7c50e0d995e7
Matthews, John A.
46fc2234-b5aa-45bc-aaa2-016d2369628e
Barnett, Catherine
9b12df98-005b-4aa5-a9d9-3aa0b2c7b398
Dumayne-Peaty, Lisa
8cf0713e-65f7-4291-b2e5-7c50e0d995e7
Matthews, John A.
46fc2234-b5aa-45bc-aaa2-016d2369628e

Barnett, Catherine, Dumayne-Peaty, Lisa and Matthews, John A. (2001) Holocene climatic change and tree-line response in Leirdalen, central Jotunheimen, south central Norway. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 117 (1), 119-137. (doi:10.1016/S0034-6667(01)00081-1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The provisional results of pollen analysis of a small mire (Leirdalen 5) provide evidence for long-term changes in forest composition and extent at and around the present day altitudinal tree-line in Leirdalen valley, south central Norway. Following deglaciation c. 10,115cal.yrbp, dense pine forest migrated into the area c. 9785cal.yrbp, replacing vegetation dominated formerly by birch. The pollen evidence suggests that Pinus sylvestris then expanded significantly in response to a warmer climate with summer temperatures ca. 1.5-2.0oC higher than present. This climatic optimum was probably interrupted by climatic deterioration c. 8380cal.yrbp (the Finse event), that caused woodland around Leirdalen 5 to retreat to lower altitudes. A sudden shift from dense pine forest to birch woodland with Pinus sylvestris and Alnus in conjunction with the development of a sub-alpine Betula belt is postulated to have occurred c. 6870cal.yrbp Since c. 4850cal.yrbp a general decrease in woodland extent due to further climatic deterioration and increased human impact is evident.

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More information

Published date: October 2001
Additional Information: Based on original PhD data illustrating significant shifts in Holocene tree-line altitude, the paper provides the first palynological evidence for the 8,200 cal. year BP event in the area. Valuable advances are also made regarding the sub-alpine birch belt debate, of benefit to the Scandinavian palaeoecological community.
Keywords: tree-line, sub-alpine birch belt, climatic optimum, norway, finse event

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 46637
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/46637
ISSN: 0034-6667
PURE UUID: 006380bd-fb1c-4350-aad7-7c6cadacc4ac

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 13 Jul 2007
Last modified: 13 Mar 2019 21:02

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