Vegetation History & Archaeobotany

vhaI am delighted to report that I have recently been appointed as an Associate Editor for the journal Vegetation History & Archaeobotany (VHA). The journals scope is global and covers Quaternary environmental and climatic change, with a specific focus on the Holocene and pre-historic human impacts on landscapes; often linking palaeoecological and archaeological research. My remit with VHA is to provide expertise on tropical, and in particular South American, studies. Recent articles in VHA with a South American focus include:

I hope that over the next few years we can publish some more exciting articles on the tropics in VHA and I would therefore like to encourage you to submit interesting high quality original research, reviews, or short articles for our consideration.

To find out more about the journal and submit an article click here.

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European Conference of Tropical Ecology 2016

ECTE-logo

European Conference of Tropical Ecology
Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
23-26 February 2016

This is my first time attending the European Conference of Tropical Ecology and my second visit to Germany. The conference attracted c. 350 delegates; big enough to have plenty of interesting science, and yet small enough to find everyone you wanted to. The keynote speakers chosen to head the days provided some exciting insights into various new developments across the tropics, including: the importance of biogeography (Richard Corlett), metabolism and carbon cycles (Yadvinder Malhi), diversity and resilience (Lourens Poorter), tropical peatlands (Sue Page), agricultural landscapes (Ravi Prabhu), and mutualism of figs and fig wasps (Martine Hossaert-McKay).

From the many other interesting talks five in particular grabbed my attention, these were:

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In the news

Ancient ‘massacre’ unearthed near Lake Turkana, Kenya, by Anon. BBC News: Africa

Bronze Age houses uncovered in Cambridgeshire are Britain’s ‘Pompeii’ , by Anon. BBC News: Cambridgeshire

Scientists weigh in on ‘giraffe relative’ fossil by Helen Briggs. BBC News: Science & Environment

Sex with Neanderthals may be the cause of modern allergies, studies suggest by Doug Bolton. Independent: Science

Scientific articles

Patterson, R.T., Huckerby, G., Kelly, T.J., Swindles, G.T. & Nasser, N.A. (2015) Hydroecology of Amazonian lacustrine Arcellinida (testate amoebae): A case study from Lake Quistococha, Peru. European Journal of Protistology 51, 460-469. DOI: 10.1016/j.ejop.2015.06.009

Pitulko, V.V., Tikhonov, A.N., Pavlova, E.Y., Nikolskiy, P.A., Kuper, K.E. & Polozov, R.N. (2016) Early human presence in the Arctic: Evidence from 45,000-year-old mammoth remains. Science 351, 260-263. DOI: 10.1126/science.aad0554

Moseley, G.E., Edwards, R.L., Wendt, K.A., Cheng, H., Dublyansky, Y., Lu, Y., Boch, R. & Spotl, C. (2016) Reconciliation of the Devils Hole climate record with orbital forcing. Science 351, 165-168. DOI: 10.1126/science.aad4132

 

Brown, J.H. (2014) Why are there so many species in the tropics? Journal of Biogeography 41, 8-22. DOI:  10.1111/jbi.12228

Matamoro-Vidal, A., Prieu, C., Furness, C.A., Albert, B. & Gouyon, P. (2016) Evolutionary stasis in pollen morphogenesis due to natural selection. New Phytologist 209, 376-394. DOI: 10.1111/nph.13578

McMichael, C., Piperno, D., Neves, E., Bush, M., Almeida, F. & Mongelo, G. (2015) Phytolith assemblages along a gradient of ancient human disturbance in western Amazonia. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 3, 141. DOI: 10.3389/fevo.2015.00141

ter Steege, H. et al. (2015) Estimating the global conservation status of more than 15,000 Amazonian tree species. Science Advances 1. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500936