Vegetation history of Molinia heaths in Tysvær, Rogaland, western Norway

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Abstract

Investigations were undertaken in an area of western Norway, approximately 30 km from the coast. The area is dominated by Molinia caerulea heaths on gentle slopes of silt-dominated glacial deposits. Pollen analyses were made on 3 soil profiles. Each profile could be divided into 2 local pollen assemblage zones (PAZs) corresponding with a change from dry to damp soils. From a comparison of the fossil pollen assemblages with pollen assemblages from surface samples collected from present-day Molinia heaths, and a radiocarbon date, the Molinia heaths can be shown to have originated about 1900 years BP. The persistence of the Molinia heaths is probably related to the high water-holding capacity of the sediments and the influence of human activity.

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