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Quantitative landscape reconstruction and erosion history during the past 1,100 years in the Skogaryd Research Catchment, southern Sweden

Author:
  • Bingjie Yang
  • Anne Birgitte Nielsen
  • Karl Ljung
  • Elise Fahlgren
  • Anne Hormes
  • Dan Hammarlund
Publishing year: 2020-01-30
Language: English
Pages:
Publication/Series: Vegetation History and Archaeobotany
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Springer

Abstract english

A sediment sequence from a small forest lake in southwestern Sweden was investigated to explore the effects of forestry and land-use on catchment erosion and delivery of organic and minerogenic matter to the lake. Catchment-scale vegetation changes during the last 1,100 years were reconstructed quantitatively at 50-year resolution using pollen analysis and the Landscape reconstruction algorithm (LRA). Variations in terrestrial organic matter input to lake sediments were assessed by total organic carbon (TOC) content and carbon to nitrogen (C/N) ratios. Changes in minerogenic matter were analysed using X-ray fluorescence (XRF) scanning. The results show that Skogaryd was not intensively used for agriculture throughout the past 1,100 years, but its land-use changes were very sensitive to societal changes. Between ca. ad 950 and 1350, local land-use was characterized by small-scale agricultural activities associated with the Medieval expansion, and enhanced soil erosion was recorded by increased K, Ti and Rb deposition. Around ad 1350 much of the farmland was abandoned, most likely in response to outbreaks of plague. The abandonment of farmland caused increased coniferous woodland cover and lower soil erosion. From the 16th century land-use expanded and gradually intensified, concurrent with a population increase documented in the study area between ca. ad 1600 and 1850. Intensive exploitation of the forest led to soil erosion and increased terrestrial organic and minerogenic matter export to the lake. These processes peaked with the artificial drainage of a nearby wetland for agricultural purposes. During the 20th century, modern forestry management started with the plantation of conifers, and soil erosion declined.

Keywords

  • Geosciences, Multidisciplinary

Other

Published
  • Late Holocene climate change and human impacts in southern Sweden based on lake sediments
  • ISSN: 1617-6278
Anne Birgitte Nielsen
E-mail: anne_birgitte [dot] nielsen [at] geol [dot] lu [dot] se

Senior lecturer

Quaternary Sciences

+46 46 222 39 48

315

Sölvegatan 12, Lund

16

Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science
Lund University
Sölvegatan 12
S-223 62 Lund
Sweden

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