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Late Pleistocene vegetation and climate near Melaleuca Inlet, South-western Tasmania


Jordan, GJ and Carpenter, RJ and Hill, RS, Late Pleistocene vegetation and climate near Melaleuca Inlet, South-western Tasmania, Australian Journal of Botany, 39 pp. 315-333. ISSN 0067-1924 (1991) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 1991 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/BT9910315


Macrofossils of 27 taxa and microfossils of 47 taxa are identified from a Late Pleistocene deposit at Melaleuca Inlet with a minimum age of 38 800 years. Interpretation of the fossil assemblage suggests that at the time of deposition the climate was cooler than at present and at least as wet. The local vegetation was dominated by wet scrub and sedgeland-heath communities with rainforest and wet sclerophyll forest also present. Species composition was similar to extant vegetation in the region but now-extinct species and possibly communities were present. Charcoal occurs in the sediments and the taxonomic make-up of the assemblage is consistent with the presence of a well established high fire frequency, despite the deposit pre-dating the earliest known human occupation of Tasmania.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:fire, ecology, extinction, aborigines
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Palaeoecology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences
UTAS Author:Jordan, GJ (Professor Greg Jordan)
UTAS Author:Carpenter, RJ (Dr Raymond Carpenter)
UTAS Author:Hill, RS (Professor Bob Hill)
ID Code:88883
Year Published:1991
Web of Science® Times Cited:23
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2014-02-19
Last Modified:2014-05-15

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