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Paleoclimatic implications of glacial and postglacial refugia for Pinus pumila in western Beringia

  • Patricia M. Anderson (a1), Anatoly V. Lozhkin (a2), Tatiana B. Solomatkina (a2) and Thomas A. Brown (a3)
Abstract

Palynological results from Julietta Lake currently provide the most direct evidence to support the existence of a glacial refugium for Pinus pumila in mountains of southwestern Beringia. Both percentages and accumulation rates indicate the evergreen shrub survived until at least ∼ 19,000 14C yr BP in the Upper Kolyma region. Percentage data suggest numbers dwindled into the late glaciation, whereas pollen accumulation rates point towards a more rapid demise shortly after ∼ 19,000 14C yr BP. Pinus pumila did not re-establish in any great numbers until ∼ 8100 14C yr BP, despite the local presence ∼ 9800 14C yr BP of Larix dahurica, which shares similar summer temperature requirements. The postglacial thermal maximum (in Beringia ∼ 11,000-9000 14C yr BP) provided Pinus pumila shrubs with equally harsh albeit different conditions for survival than those present during the LGM. Regional records indicate that in this time of maximum warmth Pinus pumila likely sheltered in a second, lower-elevation refugium. Paleoclimatic models and modern ecology suggest that shifts in the nature of seasonal transitions and not only seasonal extremes have played important roles in the history of Pinus pumila over the last ∼ 21,000 14C yr BP.

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*Corresponding author.E-mail address: pata@u.washington.edu (P.M. Anderson).
References
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