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A late-glacial transition from Picea glauca to Picea mariana in southern New England

  • Matts Lindbladh (a1), W. Wyatt Oswald (a2) (a3), David R. Foster (a3), Edward K. Faison (a3), Juzhi Hou (a4) and Yongsong Huang (a4)...

Picea is an important taxon in late-glacial pollen records from eastern North America, but little is known about which species of Picea were present. We apply a recently developed palynological method for discriminating the three Picea species in eastern North America to three records from New England. Picea glauca was dominant at ∼ 14,500–14,000 cal yr BP, followed by a transition to Picea mariana between ∼ 14,000 and 13,500 cal yr BP. Comparison of the pollen data with hydrogen isotope data shows clearly that this transition began before the beginning of the Younger Dryas Chronozone. The ecological changes of the late-glacial interval were not a simple oscillation in the position of a single species' range, but rather major changes in vegetation structure and composition occurring during an interval of variations in several environmental factors, including climate, edaphic conditions, and atmospheric CO2 levels.

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*Corresponding author. E-mail address: (M. Lindbladh).
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Quaternary Research
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