The influence of climatic change, fire and species invasion on a Tasmanian temperate rainforest system over the past 18,000 years

Fletcher, Michael-Shawn, Bowman, David MJS, Whitlock, Cathy , Mariani, Michela, Beck, Kristen, Stahle, Laura N, Hopf, Felicitas, Benson, Alexa, Hall, Tegan, Heijnis, Hendrik and Zawadzki, Atun (2021) The influence of climatic change, fire and species invasion on a Tasmanian temperate rainforest system over the past 18,000 years. Quaternary Science Reviews, 260 . p. 106824. ISSN 0277-3791

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2021.106824

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The influence of climatic change, fire and species invasion on a southern temperate rainforest system over the past 18,000 years
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Abstract

We aim to understand how did cool temperate rainforest respond to changes in climate and fire activity
over the past 18 kcal yrs, interrogating the role that flammable plant species (such as Eucalyptus) have in
the long-term dynamics of rainforest vegetation. We used high-resolution pollen and charcoal analysis,
radiometric dating (lead and carbon), modern pollen-vegetation relationships, detrended correspondence
analysis, rarefaction (palynological richness), rate of change and granger causality to understand
the patterns and drivers of change in cool temperate rainforest from the sediments of Lake Vera,
southwest Tasmania through time. We record clear changes in key rainforest taxa in response to climatic
change throughout the record. The spread of rainforest through the lake catchment in the early and mid-
Holocene effectively negated disturbance from fire despite a region-wide peak in fire activity. An
anomalously dry period in the late-Holocene resulted in a local fire that facilitated the establishment of
Eucalyptus within the local catchment. Granger causality tests reveal a significant lead of Eucalyptus over
fire activity in the Holocene, indicating that fires were enhanced by this pyrogenic taxon following
establishment.

Keywords:Pollen, Fire, Rainforest, Tasmania, Topographic fire refugia, climate change, Eucalyptus
Subjects:F Physical Sciences > F670 Geochemistry
F Physical Sciences > F850 Environmental Sciences
F Physical Sciences > F643 Quaternary studies
F Physical Sciences > F642 Geoscience
Divisions:College of Science > School of Geography
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ID Code:46615
Deposited On:05 Oct 2021 09:00

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