Late- and post-glacial vegetational change at Black Loch, Fife, eastern Scotland – a multiple core approach



Percentage and absolute (concentration and ‘influx’) pollen diagrams are presented from four locations within a small lake (Black Loch) in eastern Scotland. Two lake marginal cores extend back to lateglacial times but material recovered from the more central cores provides data over only the last c. 3500 years. Two cores are radiocarbon dated (a total of 25 dates) and provide a chronological framework for catchment events. The differences in pollen histories between cores serve to exemplify the dangers of reliance upon single profiles, but the similarities are sufficiently strong to enable useful comparisons to be made and to permit a comprehensive reconstruction of vegetational history for the site. Of particular note is the apparent early arrival of Corylus (c. 8600 BP) and Alnus (c. 7300 BP), the local presence of Pinus and the existence of multiple elm declines. Human impacts upon the vegetational landscape are demonstrable from at least Neolithic times onwards and the presence of Cannabis sativa pollen is strong from c. 985 BP. The planting of woodland on Sanded estates over the last few centuries is clearly represented.