Ecología de la altiplanicie de la Gran Sabana (Guayana Venezolana) : Estructura, diversidad, crecimiento y adaptación en bosques de las subcuencas de los ríos Yuruaní y Alto Kukenán / editado por Lionel Hernández
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This work consists of a key, descriptions and illustrations, to identify the most significant angiosperm pollen types (85 genera/ species, belonging to 36 families), from a paleoecological point of view, of the Gran Sabana and the 'tepui' (table mountains) summits from eastern Venezuelan Guayana. The pollen key and plates contain the most frequent and abundant pollen types found so far by the author in the Holocene sediments, as well as the significant medium and minor elements. This is enough to carry out a standard, successful palynological analysis in the area with a small percentage of unknown taxa, and can be considered a first step to be enhanced with future studies, especially from the 'tepui' summits of the western Venezuelan Guayana.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The southern Gran Sabana (SE Venezuela) holds a particular type of neotropical savanna characterized by the local occurrence of morichales (Mauritia palm swamps), in a climate apparently more suitable for rain forests. We present a paleoecological analysis of the last millennia of Lake Chonita (4°39′N–61°0′W, 884 m elevation), based on biological and physico-chemical proxies. Savannas dominated the region during the last millennia, but a significant vegetation replacement occurred in recent times. The site was covered by a treeless savanna with nearby rainforests from 3640 to 2180 cal yr BP. Water levels were higher than today until about 2800 cal yr BP. Forests retreated since about 2180 cal yr BP onwards, likely influenced by a higher fire incidence that facilitated a dramatic expansion of morichales. The simultaneous appearance of charcoal particles and Mauritia pollen around 2000 cal yr BP supports the potential pyrophilous nature of this palm and the importance of fire for its recent expansion. The whole picture suggests human settlements similar to today – in which fire is an essential element – since around 2000 yr ago. Therefore, present-day southern Gran Sabana landscapes seem to have been the result of the synergy between biogeographical, climatic and anthropogenic factors, mostly fire.
Quaternary Research 11/2011; 76(3):335-344. · 2.58 Impact Factor
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