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Life Sciences - Ecology | Late Pleistocene and Holocene Environmental Change on the Olympic Peninsula, Washington

Late Pleistocene and Holocene Environmental Change on the Olympic Peninsula, Washington

Series: Ecological Studies, Vol. 222

Gavin, Daniel G., Brubaker, Linda B.

2015, XII, 142 p. 52 illus., 36 illus. in color.

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  • Offers reviews of past studies of the Olympic Peninsula as well as new data and analysis from the authors
  • Updated presentation and analysis of studies from the 1950s through 1980s offers a historical baseline and exposes readers to previously inaccessible data
  • The records presented show how climate change of the late Pleistocene and Holocene periods affected the biodiversity of the Olympic Peninsula
  • This data sheds light on the potential impacts of projected climate change

Utilizing a paleoecological approach, this volume brings together decades of research on the modern natural environment of Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. This review of past research on paleoenvironmental change since the Late Pleistocene presents paleoecological records of changing forest composition and fire over the last 14,000 years. This volume, and its conclusions, draws extensively from Dr. Daniel Gavin and Dr. Linda Brubaker’s study of five Olympic Peninsula pollen records.

The Olympic Peninsula is an ideal setting for studying the responses of ecosystems to past climate change. Located just south of the maximum ice-sheet extent during the Last Glacial Maximum, there is abundant evidence that it functioned as a glacial refugium; 29 taxa endemic to the peninsula likely persisted in such refugia. Furthermore, its uniquely steep rainfall gradient produces a wide range of habitats over short distances. A literature review, synthesis of published data, and close examination of the authors’ investigations of post-glacial climate and vegetation change, this book features detailed color maps and data graphics.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » Paleocology - Pleistocene and Holocene climate and vegetation - forest ecology - natural disturbance regimes - vegetation gradients

Related subjects » Earth System Sciences - Ecology - Global Change - Climate Change

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