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Pollen Analysis of Fossil Packrat Middens from the Sonoran Desert

  • James E. King (a1) and Thomas R. Van Devender (a2)

Pollen contained in 22 fossil packrat middens from the Sonoran Desert provides a complementary, but differing, view of the paleoenvironment from that derived by analysis of the associated plant macrofossils. The regional component of the pollen data is in sharp contrast to the locally oriented macrofossils. A total of 84 macrofossil taxa and 47 pollen taxa were identified; only 18 taxa were common to both. The low Index of Similarity, 0.4, indicates that the two sources of fossil information are providing different sets of paleobotanical data. When combined with plant macrofossils and good radiocarbon dating control, the pollen spectra derived from fossil middens are compatable with other paleoenvironmental sequences.

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Quaternary Research
  • ISSN: 0033-5894
  • EISSN: 1096-0287
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