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Universiteit van Amsterdam (2013)

Geomorphology and Landscape Evolution of the Parroquia-Zarzilla Region, SE Spain

Bösken J.J.

Titre : Geomorphology and Landscape Evolution of the Parroquia-Zarzilla Region, SE Spain

Auteur : Bösken J.J.

Université de soutenance : Universiteit van Amsterdam - Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED)

Grade : Master programme : Earth and Environmental Sciences 2013

Présentation
Phytolith application in paleovegetation reconstructions has increased since the last change of century. Paleovegetation reconstructions provide information about response and resilience of vegetation on environmental changes, including climate change and human impact. Andean-Amazonian environmental gradients provide opportunities to relate phytolith assemblages to plant taxa. In this research, phytoliths from Ecuador’s Andean- Amazonian forests were counted and related to plant taxa. To find controls of forest structure and functioning, taxonomic variance was related to gradients of climate, land use and human disturbance using Canonical Correspondence Analysis and Pearson’s correlations. Stronger human disturbance affected taxonomic composition most, but taxa remained relatively resilient to moderate human disturbance, potentially informing environmental management strategies. Temperature related gradients also strongly affected taxonomic composition. Impact of precipitation related gradients was low, possibly a result of limited reliability of the precipitation data. Palm taxa thrived at warmer low elevations. Grass taxa thrived at cooler higher elevations. No increase of arboreal taxa was found above 1200 meter, although expected as a result of increased moisture availability due to permanent montane cloud formation. Near local roads more agricultural phytoliths were found, reflecting their use by local farmers. Phytolith analysis reflected existing knowledge, emphasizing potential as a paleo proxy.

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Page publiée le 6 novembre 2016, mise à jour le 12 octobre 2018