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Steppe Expansion in Patagonia?

  • Thomas T. Veblen (a1) and Vera Markgraf (a2)

Westward expansion of the Patagonian steppe and retrocession of Andean forests due to increasing aridity over the past one or two millennia has been a persistent theme in the ecological and paleoecological literature for at least half a century. New evidence from pollen profiles, tree-ring analysis, vegetation structure, and photographic and documentary historical sources does not show the expansion of the steppe. Instead, over the past century trees have invaded the steppe as a consequence mainly of human-induced changes in the fire regime, and trees have regenerated in forest areas that were heavily burnt at the onset of European colonization.

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