Expected trends and surprises in the Lateglacial and Holocene vegetation history of the Iberian Peninsula and Balearic Islands

José S. Carrión, Santiago Fernández, Penélope González-Sampériz, Graciela Gil-Romera, Ernestina Badal, Yolanda Carrión-Marco, Lourdes López-Merino, José A. López-Sáez, Elena Fierro, Francesc Burjachs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

321 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Recent, high-resolution palaeoecological records are changing the traditional picture of post-glacial vegetation succession in the Iberian Peninsula. In addition to the influence of Lateglacial and Early Holocene climatic changes, other factors are critical in the course of vegetation development and we observe strong regional differences. The floristic composition, location and structure of glacial tree populations and communities may have been primary causes of vegetation development. Refugial populations in the Baetic cordilleras would have been a source, but not the only one, for the early Lateglacial oak expansions. From Mid to Late Holocene, inertial, resilient, and rapid responses of vegetation to climatic change are described, and regional differences in the response are stressed. The role of fire, pastoralism, agriculture, and other anthropogenic disturbances (such as mining), during the Copper, Bronze, Iberian, and Roman times, is analysed. The implications of ecological transitions in cultural changes, especially when they occur as societal collapses, are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-475
Number of pages18
JournalReview of Palaeobotany and Palynology
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010

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