Palaeoecology (Ecology of the past) is the study of the natural environment from the fossil record. Researchers involved with this blog are interested in understanding how modern environment came to be. We are therefore interested in any evidence we can get from old (palaeo) time periods. Some of the terms that you may also see with the “palaeo” prefix include: palaeogeography (geography of the past), palaeolimnology (lakes of the past), palaeoclimate (climate of the past), and palaeoenvironments (environments of the past).
We are particularly focused on addressing questions in three areas:
- Present is the key to the past: How can a better understanding of modern environments help us interpret the records from the past?
- Long-term ecology: How can understanding ecosystem function on timescales beyond those available from human observation and experiment help us how anticipate current trajectories of change.
- Earth system function: How can we extract information from the past that helps us to understand how different parts of the Earth’s system interact with each other.
The main ways in which we communicate our research through: