Late Quaternary palaeoenvironments in the central semi-arid region of South Africa from pollen in cave, pan, spring, stream and dung deposits

L. Scott, M. Sobol, F. H. Neumann, G. Gil Romera, Y. Fernández-Jalvo, C. B. Bousman, L. K. Horwitz, A. C. van Aardt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

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 sequence. By re-considering the chronology of this sequence, we critically evaluated the palaeoenvironmental record for the site. We compared the pollen evidence from Equus Cave to that from the longer Wonderwerk Cave records (stalagmite, sediments and dung), also located in the Savanna Biome. Then, we contrasted Equus and Wonderwerk records with other previously published pollen sequences derived from a range of sources from several sites in central South Africa. These sites follow a broad northwest to southeast transect of c. 500 km through the Grassland and Nama Karoo Biomes of the Free State and Eastern Cape. Applying Principal Components Analysis to the pollen data, we derived climatic signals at a regional scale to refine reconstructions of Late Quaternary changes for central South Africa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-97
Number of pages14
JournalQuaternary International
Volume614
DOIs
StatePublished - 20 Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA

Keywords

  • Equus Cave
  • Hyena coprolites
  • Palynology
  • Southern Hemisphere
  • Taphonomy

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