Landscape-scale drivers of glacial ecosystem change in the montane forests of the eastern Andean flank, Ecuador

Open acess, online:

Loughlin, N.J.D., Gosling, W.D., Coe, A.L., Gulliver, P., Mothes, P. & Montoya, E. (2017) Landscape-scale drivers of glacial ecosystem change in the montane forests of the eastern Andean flank, Ecuador. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. DOI: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2017.10.011

More on “Persistent effects of pre-Columbian plant domestication on Amazonian forest composition”

Crytsal McMichael (University of Amsterdam)

Discussion on human impacts on Amazonian forest…

McMichael, C.H., Feeley, K.J., Dick, C.W., Piperno, D.R. & Bush, M.B. (2017) Comment on “Persistent effects of pre-Columbian plant domestication on Amazonian forest composition”. Science 358. DOI: 10.1126/science.aan8347

Junqueira, A.B., Levis, C., Bongers, F., Peña-Claros, M., Clement, C.R., Costa, F. & ter Steege, H. (2017) Response to Comment on “Persistent effects of pre-Columbian plant domestication on Amazonian forest composition”. Science 358. DOI: 10.1126/science.aan8837

PhD: When was the South Pacific colonised?

Title: When was the South Pacific colonised? A lake sediment approach to understanding climate:human drivers of ecosystem change on remote Pacific Islands

Location: University of Soithampton (Geography & Environment)

Supervsiory team: Dr. Sandra Nogué, Prof Mary Edwards, Prof. David Sear, Dr. William Gosling (University of Amsterdam), Prof. Inger (Tromso University), Prof. Janet Wilmshurst (Landcare research and University of Auckland)

Rationale: The Pacific islands of Polynesia were among the last places on earth to be colonised by humans. The precise dates of colonisation are debated – a situation which arises from the different sources of evidence (1, 2). New lake sediment records from the Cook Islands (Atiu, Mangaia) and Samoa (Upolu) and Tonga show very clear evidence of disturbance, but what is unclear is to what extent the signal represents the arrival of humans or a change in climate (2). A key question for the analysis of sedimentary records is the ability to distinguish natural variability in the environment of Pacific Islands from that arising from the arrival of humans in a temporal and spatial context. We aim to use a multi-proxy approach based on SedDNA, lipid biomarkers, fossil charcoal, and pollen preserved in lake sediments to identify: a) the presence of humans and/or livestock that were brought with them, and b) the related environmental change. Multiproxy approaches supported by statistical analysis, will be deployed to four sites where we already have good chronological controls and high resolution records of palaeoclimate. We are well placed to apply new methods and higher resolution analyses to address fundamental questions about the response of remote pacific islands to climate and human forcings.

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PhD: Stress in Paradise

Title: Stress in Paradise: Quantifying the frequency and impacts of ENSO driven droughts in tropical Pacific Island Nations

Location: University of Soithampton (Geography & Environment)

Supervisory team: Prof. David Sear, Prof. Justin Sheffield, Prof Ian Croudace (National Oceanographic Centre, Southampton).

Rationale: Because of their small size and isolation, islands in the Pacific have limited and fragile natural resources, making them more vulnerable to climate hazards and stresses than are continents1. Pacific Island Nations (PINS) also occupy the region of the earth’s surface most immediately impacted by ENSO events. The impacts of El Nino events are felt across 3,975 islands, 13 island nations, affecting a population of 12.9 million who rely on rainfall for freshwater and food security. To date our understanding of the mechanisms of drought, their frequency and duration, and their biophysical effects in PINs remain poorly quantified. In addition island types experience droughts differently, varying according to their location, topography, geological history and ecology. Droughts are also thought to have been important drivers of the human colonization of the Pacific2. Drought frequency is likely to increase in the tropical pacific but again its specific impacts are largely unknown. This PhD seeks to develop a step change in our understanding of droughts based on novel coupling of long term data on drought frequency with process based drought modelling.

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The ACER pollen and charcoal database: a global resource to document vegetation and fire response to abrupt climate changes during the last glacial period

Goni, M.F.S., Desprat, S., Daniau, A., Bassinot, F.C., Polanco-Martinez, J.M., Harrison, S.P., Allen, J.R.M., Anderson, R.S., Behling, H., Bonnefille, R., Burjachs, F., Carrion, J.S., Cheddadi, R., Clark, J.S., Combourieu-Nebout, N., Mustaphi, C.J.C., Debusk, G.H., Dupont, L.M., Finch, J.M., Fletcher, W.J., Giardini, M., Gonzalez, C., Gosling, W.D., Grigg, L.D., Grimm, E.C., Hayashi, R., Helmens, K., Heusser, L.E., Hill, T., Hope, G., Huntley, B., Igarashi, Y., Irino, T., Jacobs, B., Jimenez-Moreno, G., Kawai, S., Kershaw, A.P., Kumon, F., Lawson, I.T., Ledru, M., Lezine, A., Liew, P.M., Magri, D., Marchant, R., Margari, V., Mayle, F.E., McKenzie, G.M., Moss, P., Mueller, S., Mueller, U.C., Naughton, F., Newnham, R.M., Oba, T., Perez-Obiol, R., Pini, R., Ravazzi, C., Roucoux, K.H., Rucina, S.M., Scott, L., Takahara, H., Tzedakis, P.C., Urrego, D.H., van Geel, B., Valencia, B.G., Vandergoes, M.J., Vincens, A., Whitlock, C.L., Willard, D.A. & Yamamoto, M. (2017) The ACER pollen and charcoal database: a global resource to document vegetation and fire response to abrupt climate changes during the last glacial period. Earth System Science Data 9, 679-695. DOI: 10.5194/essd-9-679-2017

Pollen-vegetation richness and diversity relationships in the tropics

Online, open access:

Gosling, W.D., Julier, A.C.M., Adu-Bredu, S., Djagbletey, G.D., Fraser, W.T., Jardine, P.E., Lomax, B.H., Malhi, Y., Manu, E.A., Mayle, F.E. & Moore, S. (2017) Pollen-vegetation richness and diversity relationships in the tropics. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany. DOI: 10.1007/s00334-017-0642-y

Mauritius on fire: Tracking historical human impacts on biodiversity loss

Gosling, W.D., de Kruif, J.*, Norder, S.J., de Boer, E.J., Hooghiemstra, H., Rijsdijk, K.F. & McMichael, C.N.H. (2017) Mauritius on fire: Tracking historical human impacts on biodiversity loss. Biotropica. DOI: 10.1111/btp.12490

* This paper evolved from the BSc Future Planet Studies thesis of Jona de Kruif (2015) “Multi-proxy analysis of the effect of climate and human activity on the environment of Mauritius during the Holocene” at the University of Amsterdam. Jona was supervised by William Gosling and Erik de Boer.