Vegetation History & Archaeobotany

February 12, 2017
WDG

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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Matthews-Bird, F., Brooks, S.J., Holden, P.B., Montoya, E. & Gosling, W.D. (2016) Inferring late-Holocene climate in the Ecuadorian Andes using a chironomid-based temperature inference model. Climate of the Past 12, 1263-1280. DOI: 10.5194/cp-12-1263-2016

Miller, C.S., Leroy, S.A.G., Collins, P.E.F. & Lahijani, H.A.K. (2016) Late Holocene vegetation and ocean variability in the Gulf of Oman. Quaternary Science Reviews 143, 120-132. DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.05.010

 

Lahr, M.M. et al. (2016) Inter-group violence among early Holocene hunter-gatherers of West Turkana, Kenya. Nature 529, 394-398. doi: 10.1038/nature16477

Rademaker, K., Hodgins, G., Moore, K., Zarrillo, S., Miller, C., Bromley, G.R.M., Leach, P., Reid, D.A., Yepez Alvarez, W. & Sandweiss, D.H. (2014) Paleoindian settlement of the high-altitude Peruvian Andes. Science 346, 466-469. doi: 10.1126/science.1258260

da Silva, S.G. & Tehrani, J.J. (2016) Comparative phylogenetic analyses uncover the ancient roots of Indo-European folktales. Royal Society Open Science 3. doi

Veenendaal, E.M. et al. (2015) Structural, physiognomic and above-ground biomass variation in savanna-forest transition zones on three continents – how different are co-occurring savanna and forest formations? Biogeosciences 12, 2927-2951. doi: 10.5194/bg-12-2927-2015

Quantifying late-Holocene climate in the Ecuadorian Andes using a chironomid-based temperature inference model

January 21, 2016
WDG

midge headOur latest manuscript has just been made available, via Climate of the Past Discussions, for comment and review. Click here to check it out. We look forward to hearing what people think.

Quantifying late-Holocene climate in the Ecuadorian Andes using a chironomid-based temperature inference model
Matthews-Bird, F., Brooks, S.J., Holden, P.B., Montoya, E. & Gosling, W.D.

Abstract below

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Published open access:

Hoogakker, B.A.A., Smith, R.S., Singarayer, J.S., Marchant, R., Prentice, I.C., Allen, J.R.M., Anderson, R.S., Bhagwat, S.A., Behling, H., Borisova, O., Bush, M., Correa-Metrio, A., de Vernal, A., Finch, J.M., Frechette, B., Lozano-Garcia, S., Gosling, W.D., Granoszewski, W., Grimm, E.C., Gruger, E., Hanselman, J., Harrison, S.P., Hill, T.R., Huntley, B., Jimenez-Moreno, G., Kershaw, P., Ledru, M.-., Magri, D., McKenzie, M., Muller, U., Nakagawa, T., Novenko, E., Penny, D., Sadori, L., Scott, L., Stevenson, J., Valdes, P.J., Vandergoes, M., Velichko, A., Whitlock, C. & Tzedakis, C. (2016) Terrestrial biosphere changes over the last 120 kyr. Climate of the Past 12, 51-73. DOI: 10.5194/cp-12-51-2016

 

In the news:

Jonathan Amos (2016) ‘Case is made’ for Anthropogenic Epoch. BBC News: Science & Environment.

Scientific publications:

Sarmiento, F.O. (2002) Anthropogenic change in the landscapes of highland Ecuador. Geographical Review 92, 213-234. doi: 10.1111/j.1931-0846.2002.tb00005.x

Swindles, G.T., Lamentowicz, M., Reczuga, M. & Galloway, J.M. (online)  Palaeoecology of testate amoebae in a tropical peatland. European Journal of Protistology. doi: 10.1016/j.ejop.2015.10.002

Tellkamp, M.P. (2014) Habitat change and trade explain the bird assemblage from the La Chimba archaeological site in the northeastern Andes of Ecuador. Ibis 156, 812-825. doi: 10.1111/ibi.12179

Waters, C.N., Zalasiewicz, J., Summerhayes, C., Barnosky, A.D., Poirier, C., Galuszka, A., Cearreta, A., Edgeworth, M., Ellis, E.C., Ellis, M., Jeandel, C., Leinfelder, R., McNeill, J.R., Richter, D.d., Steffen, W., Syvitski, J., Vidas, D., Wagreich, M., Williams, M., Zhisheng, A., Grinevald, J., Odada, E., Oreskes, N. & Wolfe, A.P. (2016) The Anthropocene is functionally and stratigraphically distinct from the Holocene. Science 351, . doi: 10.1126/science.aad2622

Open access online:

Flantua, S.G.A., Hooghiemstra, H., Grimm, E.C., Behling, H., Bush, M.B., González-Arango, C., Gosling, W.D., Ledru, M., Lozano-García, S., Maldonado, A., Prieto, A.R., Rull, V. & Van Boxel, J.H. Updated site compilation of the Latin American Pollen Database. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 223, 104-115. DOI: 10.1016/j.revpalbo.2015.09.008

Assistant Professor Palaeoecology

November 18, 2014
WDG

02_05_2007_AsteraceaeVacancy: Assistant Professor Palaeoecology
(5-year tenure track)

Palaeoecology & Landscape Ecology
Institute of Biodiversity & Ecosystem Dynamics
University of Amsterdam

Closing data: 14 December 2014
Interviews: January 2015

We are looking for an ecologist with experience and interest in long timescales specifically related to one, or more, of the following research areas:

  • the Quaternary (last 2.6 million years);
  • sedimentary archives;
  • application and interpretation of proxy indicators (physical, biological and/or geochemical);
  • novel proxy development;
  • numerical/statistical methods in ecology.

For full details on the position and how to apply click here.
For informal discussion of the position please contact William Gosling.

Current research within the P&L group focuses on examining past environmental change in lake sediments (Yanacocha, Peru)

Current research within the P&L group focuses on examining past environmental change in lake sediments (Photo: Yanacocha, Peru)

Williams PhD thesis 2011

May 13, 2014
WDG

Williams, J.J. (2011) Human and climate impacts on tropical Andean ecosystems. PhD Thesis, Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, The Open University.

JJW Bolivia (2007)

JJW Bolivia (2007)

Abstract:

Population growth and predicted global climate change are applying new, and increasing, pressure to mountain environments, but the consequences of these changes upon the biodiverse and vulnerable Tropical Andean ecosystems are poorly understood. This thesis explores past human-climate-ecosystem interactions using multi-proxy palaeolimnological investigations (fossil pollen, spore, charcoal and Chironomidae (midges); elemental abundance, colour spectra and magnetic susceptibility) of two sites in the eastern Bolivian Andes (Lake Challacaba and Laguna Khomer Kocha Upper) over the last c. 18,000 years. During the deglaciation and Holocene ecosystems were exposed to varying climatic stress levels, and pressures imposed by the development of human cultures.

Examination of preserved ecological assemblages, including the first assessment of subfossil central Andean Chironomidae, reveals ecosystem sensitivity to changes in temperature, moisture, fire regime, lake level and salinity. Charcoal analysis from Laguna Khomer Kotcha Upper reveals changes in burning at c. 14,500, 10,100 and 6,400 cal yr BP. Concomitant palynological shifts shows this climatically controlled fire regime was a transformative agent of Andean vegetation, particularly for the threatened, high elevation, Polylepis woodlands. Pollen and geochemical data from Lake Challacaba indicate two periods of aridity (c. 4000−3370 and 2190−1020 cal yr BP), these broadly correlated to El Niño/Southern Oscillation variations. Increased Sporormiella abundance after c. 1,340 cal yr BP indicate changes in trade routes and agricultural practices; demonstrating human adaption to environmental change and interconnectivity to Tiwanaku and Inca civilizations.

The long-term response of the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, reconstructed from these lakes, has provided insights into how Tropical Andean ecosystems may respond to future changes in temperature, precipitation and human interference. The palaeoenvironmental data has implications for conservation management; it indicates that spatial and temporal variations in site sensitivity, exposure and resilience should be assessed, and that planting strategies should mimic the present day natural patchy distribution of Polylepis woodlands.

Supervisors: Dr. William D. Gosling , Dr. Angela Coe (both The Open University), and Steve Brooks (Natural History Museum).

Examined by: Prof. Henry Hoogheimstra (University of Amsterdam), and Prof. Bob Spicer (The Open University).

To borrow a copy from The Open University Library click here.

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