Frank Neumann

Frank Neumann
North-West University | NWU · Geology-School for Geo- and Spatial Science Potchefstroom

Dr. rer. nat.
Palaeoecology of southern African Neogene & Quaternary strata Associate Professor, Geology-Soil Science, NWU

About

96
Publications
31,470
Reads
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2,170
Citations
Introduction
Frank H. Neumann, Associate Professor, NRF C1 rated, analyses Cenozoic profiles from Africa, Israel and Europe to reconstruct past landscapes, and to understand the evolution of biomes using palynology. Also, he applies biostratigraphy to establish chronologies, e.g. in Neogene strata of the Cape region. Utilizing his additional expertise in melissopalynology and aeropalynology, he aims at revealing pollination pathways in the savanna which will help in the interpretation of palaeorecords.
Additional affiliations
May 2018 - present
University of the Witwatersrand
Position
  • Senior Researcher
June 2017 - April 2018
University of KwaZulu-Natal
Position
  • PostDoc Position
February 2011 - January 2017
University of Münster
Position
  • Akademischer Rat
Education
February 2000 - February 2004
University of Bonn
Field of study
  • Paleontology
October 1992 - January 2000
University of Bonn
Field of study
  • Geology, palaeontology, Geography

Publications

Publications (96)
Article
Several models which remain equivocal and controversial cite migration and/or diffusion for the emergence and spread of pastoralism and farming in southern Africa during the first millennium AD. A synthesis of archaeobotanical proxies (e.g., palynology, phytoliths, anthracology) consistent with existing archaeobotanical and archaeological data lead...
Article
We have reassessed the palynological record of Equus Cave in the Savanna Biome of the southern Kalahari, one of the longest Late Quaternary pollen records for the semi-arid central interior of South Africa. We combined published pollen results from the cave, derived from hyena coprolites and the rubified deposits in which they occur, into a single...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Palynological studies were carried out on cored late Holocene sediments from the Mkhuze Swamp at the northern shore of Lake St. Lucia located in the Indian Ocean Coastal Belt Biome of KwaZulu-Natal, eastern South Africa. The project is part of TRACES (Tracing Human and Climate Impacts in South Africa, coordinated by MARUM, University of Bremen,...
Article
The role of plant–pollinator interactions in the rapid radiation of the angiosperms have long fascinated evolutionary biologists. Studies have brought evidence for pollinator-driven diversification of various plant lineages, particularly plants with specialized flowers and concealed rewards. By contrast, little is known about how this crucial inter...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper was presented orally at the 92nd Annual Meeting of the Paläontologische Gesellschaft, hosted by the Department of Palaeontology, University of Vienna, Austria from September 27 to October 1, 2021. In this paper, we synthesized reliable, independent archaeobotanical proxies (e.g., palynology, phytoliths, anthracology) to develop a narrati...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This abstract was submitted for an oral presentation at the 92nd Annual Meeting of the Paläontologische Gesellschaft, hosted by the Department of Palaeontology of the University of Vienna from the 27th September, 2021. The talk was based on my Master's research project outlining the influence of sea-level fluctuations on Oligo-Miocene palaeoenviron...
Article
The role of plant–pollinator interactions in the rapid radiation of the angiosperms have long fascinated evolutionary biologists. Studies have brought evidence for pollinator-driven diversification of various plant lineages, particularly plants with specialized flowers and concealed rewards. By contrast, little is known about how this crucial inter...
Article
Full-text available
Pollen and fungal spores (aerospora) are major atmospheric bioaerosols for pollen allergy sufferers. Aerospora types and concentration vary seasonally, depending upon the flowering period and meteorological factors which are variable in different geographical regions. The aim of this study was to analyze a two-year record of aerospora from two loca...
Presentation
Full-text available
The Cape floral region represents one of the highest plant biodiversities worldwide with dominant shrubby vegetation of the fynbos biome Fossil pollen, spores and dinoflagellate ( cysts in sediments were processed from Langebaanweg 120 km from Cape Town, to determine the origin of the fynbos vegetation and to reconstruct the past vegetation and env...
Article
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Olieboomspoort is one of the few rock shelters in the vast interior of southern Africa documenting pulses of occupation from the Acheulean until the end of the Later Stone Age. Revil Mason excavated the site in 1954 and attributed the large Middle Stone Age (MSA) lithic assemblage to his middle phase of the so-called Pietersburg Industry. Recent wo...
Article
Mpondoland on the South African east coast is a particularly dynamic region in terms of climate change as it is influenced by both temperate and tropical circulation and climate systems. We present a sediment record that indicates regional climatic change and anthropogenic influence during the last ~5500 yr. Catchment data allow an understanding of...
Article
Waterfall Bluff, in Eastern Mpondoland (Eastern Cape Province, South Africa), is a recently excavated archaeological site with deposits spanning Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3 to the Middle Holocene. Here, we present preliminary results of a multi-proxy palaeoenvironmental study combining macro-botanical remains, charcoal, phytoliths, pollen and plan...
Article
This paper presents ndings from the rst season of excavations conducted at the mountain-top site of Naḥal Roded 110, located in the southern Negev Desert near Eilat, Israel. Both radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence date the site to the Late Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (LPPNB, late 8th millennium BC). Palaeoenvironmental data from pollen a...
Article
Full-text available
Pollen and fungal spores (aerospora) are the major atmospheric bioaerosols. Aerospora occurrence and concentration vary by geographical region and blossoming period, and with meteorological factors. Allergic respiratory diseases affect about 20 million South Africans, with pollen and fungal allergens amongst the leading triggers. Asthma triggered b...
Article
Far’ah II is an open-air site in the north western Negev desert (Israel). Previous excavations in the 1970’s revealed a rich, in situ Middle Paleolithic (MP) assemblage composed of flint and limestone artifacts, animal bones and charcoal. Renewed excavation at the site were undertaken in 2017, to re-date it and provide a more accurate constrain to...
Article
Full-text available
Coastal occupation and foraging during the last glacial maximum and early Holocene at Waterfall Bluff, eastern Pondoland, South Africa – Erratum - Erich C. Fisher, Hayley C. Cawthra, Irene Esteban, Antonieta Jerardino, Frank H. Neumann, Annette Oertle, Justin Pargeter, Rosaria B. Saktura, Katherine Szabó, Stephan Winkler, Irit Zohar
Conference Paper
The evolution of floral host preference in longhorn bees of the genus Eucera (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Eucerini): is association with pollen from bee-flowers advantageous? Flowers with specialised pollination mechanism with concealed pollen, such as in the Fabaceae and Lamiaceae, are pollinated primarily by bees and often referred to as 'bee flowers'....
Article
Full-text available
The pantropical Picrodendraceae produce mostly spheroidal to slightly oblate, echinate pollen grains equipped with narrow circular to elliptic pori that can be hard to identify to family level in both extant and fossil material using light microscopy only. Fossil pollen of the family have been described from the Paleogene of America, Antarctica, Au...
Article
Full-text available
Excavations at the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B ritual site of Naḥal Roded 110 in the Southern Negev, Israel, have revealed evidence—unique to this region—for on-site flint knapping and abundant raptor remains. Full text available at: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/antiquity/article/investigations-at-nahal-roded-110-a-late-neolithic-ritual-sit...
Conference Paper
The P5 Project is an international and interdisciplinary team of researchers studying hunter-gatherer adaptations in persistent coastal contexts in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. Since 2015, excavations at the site of Waterfall Bluff (A2SE-1) have revealed stratified and well-preserved remains of coastal hunter-gatherer occupations dati...
Conference Paper
Waterfall Bluff, located on South Africa’s Pondoland coastline, is a recently excavated archaeological site with deposits dating from ~50 thousand years ago (ka BP), during Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3, to the Early Holocene, ~11 ka BP. This site provides the first primary evidence of coastal foraging during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in South...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
A marine core (GeoB 20615) from Maputo Bay, offshore of Mozambique, reveals vegetation fluctuations during the last c. 16,000 years. The chronology is based on 12 radiocarbon dates from planktonic foraminifera, terrestrial organic remains, e.g., seeds, and gastropod shells. Until c. 15 ka Before Present (BP) high percentages of fynbos elements, esp...
Article
The scientific contributions of E.M. van Zinderen Bakker (1907–2002) included the introduction of pollen analysis to Quaternary studies in South Africa. His palaeoecological theories evolved while performing palynological research in Southern Africa (the Maluti Mountains, Florisbad, Aliwal North, the Namib Desert), East Africa (Kalambo Falls, Mount...
Article
An investigation of the vegetation and climate from the Middle Pleistocene until the end of the Late Pleistocene reveals a plethora of terrestrial and marine biological, geological and archaeological evidence for marked and complex climate cycles of change, which reflect on past circulation patterns. While acknowledging the usefulness of diverse pr...
Article
Full-text available
An ongoing re-investigation of the early Miocene Saldanha Bay (South Africa) palynoflora, using combined light and scanning electron microscopy (single grain method), is revealing several pollen types new to the African fossil record. One of the elements identified is Loranthaceae pollen. These grains represent the first and only fossil record of L...
Article
An archaeological site is an integral part of its surrounding landscape. This is one of the main novel approaches in the long-term archaeological project of Tell es-Sâfi/Gath. The site has interacted with its surrounding for more than three thousand years. It was impacted by the ancient environment, but also had an impact on both the ancient enviro...
Article
Full-text available
When applying high-resolution microscopy, the pollen morphology of extant taxa can be used to classify fossil pollen, that is, to address the latter in the established systematic-phylogenetic framework. Here we investigate tetrads and pollen features of 20 different Winteraceae species, most of them belonging to the early-diverging generic lineages...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Our aim is to compare Quaternary palynological records from southern Africa to Neogene records in order to understand the evolution of the remarkably diverse vegetation on the subcontinent and the evolution of its distinctive biomes. An early Miocene marine core from Saldanha Bay to the north of Cape Town reveals a diverse palynoflora with mangrove...
Conference Paper
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Two case studies were conducted in order to evaluate non-HF processing of clastic sediments with consecutive heavy-liquid separation (sodium polytungstate) for both terrestrial and marine archives. Case study 1: Three palynological processing methods (H2O2, HF, (NaPO3)6) (Riding & Kyffin-Hughes 2006, 2011) where applied to Miocene clays of the clay...
Article
Fragments of cephalothecoid fructifications (peridia) were encountered during palynological investigations of Neogene deposits in Mizerna-Nowa/Poland and Adendorf/Germany. Isolated plates of cephalothecoid ascoma in shape and cellular structure similar to the extant members of the family Cephalothecaceae are described as Cephalothecoidomyces neogen...
Article
A multi-proxy study of an offshore core in Saldanha Bay (South Africa) provides new insights into fluvial deposition, ecosystems, phytogeography and sea-level history during the late Paleogene-early Neogene. Offshore seismic data reveal bedrock topography, and provide evidence of relative sea levels as low as -100 m during the Oligocene. 3D landsca...
Article
Some fragments of cephalothecoid fructifications (peridia) were encountered during palynological investigations of Neogene deposits in Mizerna-Nowa/Poland and Adendorf/Germany. Isolated plates of cephalothecoid ascoma which shape and cellular structure similar to the extant members of the family Cephalothecaceae were described as Cephalothecoideomy...
Chapter
Full-text available
Pollen and macrofossils are an integral part of palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. Here we discuss palaeobotanical evidence for vegetation and climate changes since the origins of modern biomes in southern Africa during the Miocene, and through the Pleistocene and Holocene. Examples of palaeobotanical records are provided from different biomes in...
Article
Full-text available
Few long-term climate and environmental records are available for southeast Africa where millennial scale shifts in the north-south position of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) and changes in Indian Ocean sea surface temperatures interact with local controls (e.g., fire, hydrology) to influence vegetation and ecosystem dynamics. Reconstruc...
Article
Full-text available
An archaeological site is an integral part of its surrounding landscape, rather than an isolated island. A study of the sediment record in the vicinity of a site (off-site record) can serve as an archive of the ancient landscape history and provide information about the interaction between the environmental process and human activities. There are t...
Article
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Long-term trends in climate, hydrology and geomorphology contributed to the formation of the current biomes of southern Africa. The Neogene terrestrial fossil record is patchy, due to the geomorphological evolution of the subcontinent and the restricted distribution of suitable sediment deposits. Here we review the hypotheses on the evolution of th...
Article
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This article presents the role of climate fluctuations in shaping southern Levantine human history from 3600 to 600 BCE (the Bronze and Iron Ages) as evidenced in palynological studies. This time interval is critical in the history of the region; it includes two phases of rise and decline of urban life, organization of the first territorial kingdom...
Article
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The history of lake-level changes at the Dead Sea during the Holocene was determined mainly by radiocarbon dating of terrestrial organic debris. This article reviews the various studies that have been devoted over the past 2 decades to defining the Dead Sea levels during the Bronze and Iron Ages (~5.5 to 2.5 ka cal BP) and adds new data and interpr...
Article
A palynological and sedimentological record from the Mahwaqa Mountain in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, provides evidence of the vegetation dynamics in this part of the Grassland Biome during the last c. 18,000 years. The wetland is located at 1,850 m on an isolated outlier of the Ukhahlamba–Drakensberg Mountain range on an ecotone along a climatic g...
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A detailed pollen record for the time interval of ∼2500–500 BCE, which covers the time period of the Intermediate Bronze Age (Early Bronze Age IV) into the Iron Ages in the Levant, is presented. The study was conducted in the Ze’elim Gully, which drains the southern Judean Highlands into the Dead Sea. During the Bronze and Iron Ages, the Judean Hig...
Article
Coprolites are often used in African archaeological sites as archives for proxies like pollen, which are trapped and preserved inside them. Investigating pollen taphonomy, here we aim to aid interpretations of local and regional vegetation changes by assessing dietary and other pollen sources of fresh hyaena scats from the Tswalu Kalahari Reserve (...
Article
A radiocarbon dated pollen and microscopic charred particle record from the Holocene section of the Tswaing Crater in the Savanna Biome of South Africa give new evidence for environmental changes during the period c. 9400–1800 cal years BP. Pollen grains are scarce or absent in layers dating from before 9400 cal years BP but deposits rich in pollen...
Article
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Preliminary archaeological and palynological results are presented from an early Byzantine cistern of the village Horvat Kur in eastern Lower Galilee/Israel. The rural site was settled from the Hellenistic until the Early Arab period, its synagogue was constructed shortly after 425 AD and renovated sometimes during the 2nd half of the 6th century A...
Article
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The largest deposit of excellently preserved Mio-Pliocene vertebrate faunas in SouthAfrica is located at the well known Langebaanweg (LBW) site along South Africa’s west coast in the southwestern Cape. This research deals with a core (BH2) drilled at Langebaanweg ‘E’ Quarry, which captures Miocene fluvial deposits that unconformably underlie the Mi...
Article
Full-text available
This paper summarizes the results of a recent survey of the South African “Wild Coast” in Pondoland, Eastern Cape Province. The purpose of the survey was to locate and to describe coastal caves and rock shelters that may contain Early and Middle Stone Age archaeological deposits for future study. The study is part of a much larger research design t...
Article
The late Holocene history of the South African summer rainfall zone offers insights into the effects of climate on ecosystems and human societies, as well as into the accuracy of model projections of the future. However, some important aspects of this region’s climatic history remain unresolved. Here we present new high-resolution diatom records re...
Article
Full-text available
1] Climate is an important control on biomass burning, but the sensitivity of fire to changes in temperature and moisture balance has not been quantified. We analyze sedimentary charcoal records to show that the changes in fire regime over the past 21,000 yrs are predictable from changes in regional climates. Analyses of paleo-fire data show that f...