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Relative pollen productivity estimates in the forest steppe landscape of southeastern Romania

  • Roxana Grindean
  • Anne Birgitte Nielsen
  • Ioan Tanţău
  • Angelica Feurdean
Publishing year: 2019
Language: English
Pages: 54-63
Publication/Series: Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology
Volume: 264
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Elsevier

Abstract english

Estimates of relative pollen productivity (RPP) represent key input parameters for model-based quantitative reconstructions of past vegetation cover. In this study, we provide the first RPP estimates for 13 taxa from the forest steppe ecoregion in southeastern Romania (southeastern Europe). We used modern pollen assemblages from 26 points together with vegetation surveys and mapping, covering a 1.5 km radius around each sampling site. We have estimated the relevant source area of pollen (RSAP) and pollen productivity for 13 taxa relative to Poaceae using the ERV (Extended R-value model), sub-model 3, as this model shows the best goodness of fit. The estimated RSAP is about 100 m and falls within the range of RSAP estimates of moss pollsters and forest hollows from other RPP-related studies. Results show that Rubiaceae (7.97), Apiaceae (5.91), Artemisia (5.89) and Fraxinus (2.99) are high pollen producers compared to Poaceae, while Plantago lanceolata (0.58), Fabaceae (0.40), Acer (0.30), Rosaceae (0.29), Carpinus orientalis (0.24), Cerealia (0.22) and Asteraceae (0.16) are low pollen producers with lower RPPs than Poaceae. Quercus (1.10) has a pollen productivity close to that of Poaceae. The RPPs for Carpinus orientalis and Fabaceae are published here the first time for Europe. The high pollen producing plants include both entomophilous and anemophilous species, while the low pollen producers are mostly entomophilous species. Our results form an essential contribution to improving the accuracy of quantitative reconstruction of forest steppe ecoregion in Europe and generally in regions with a similar climate and vegetation setting.


  • Botany
  • Extended R-value model
  • Forest steppe
  • Relative pollen productivity estimates
  • Relevant source area of pollen
  • Southeastern Romania


  • PAGES’ LandCover6k Working Group
  • ISSN: 0034-6667
Anne Birgitte Nielsen
E-mail: anne_birgitte [dot] nielsen [at] geol [dot] lu [dot] se

Senior lecturer

Quaternary Sciences

+46 46 222 39 48


Sölvegatan 12, Lund


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

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