Widespread, episodic decline of alder (Alnus) during the medieval period in the boreal forest of Europe

Normunds Stivrins , Michelle S. Buchan , Helena R. Disbrey , Niina Kuosmanen , Małgorzata Latałowa , Janne Lempinen , Petteri Muukkonen , Michał Słowiński , Siim Veski , Heikki Seppä


We report pollen-stratigraphical evidence for an abrupt, episodic and widespread population decline of alder (Alnus), one of the most common boreal tree genera, during the medieval period in northern Europe. Decline of alder pollen values was observed both in forest hollow pollen records reflecting local vegetation of pristine forests and in pollen percentage and pollen accumulation data from lake sediments. The event began roughly at AD 600 and the recovery took place at AD 1000. Human impact is an unlikely cause because the decline is specific to alder and there is no evidence for a concurrent episode of human impact. It is possible that the decline was caused or influenced by a severe drought. Another potential cause is a sudden, widespread pathogen outbreak, especially as alder is known to be sensitive to the impacts of fungal pathogens such as the oomycete Phytophthora.
Author Normunds Stivrins
Normunds Stivrins,,
, Michelle S. Buchan
Michelle S. Buchan,,
, Helena R. Disbrey
Helena R. Disbrey,,
, Niina Kuosmanen
Niina Kuosmanen,,
, Małgorzata Latałowa (FB / DPE)
Małgorzata Latałowa,,
- Department of Plant Ecolog
, Janne Lempinen
Janne Lempinen,,
, Petteri Muukkonen
Petteri Muukkonen,,
, Michał Słowiński
Michał Słowiński,,
, Siim Veski
Siim Veski,,
, Heikki Seppä
Heikki Seppä,,
Journal seriesJournal of Quaternary Science, ISSN 0267-8179, (A 35 pkt)
Issue year2017
Publication size in sheets0.5
Keywords in Englishdrought, human impact, macrocharcoal, pathogen, pollen
URL http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jqs.2984/epdf
Languageen angielski
Score (nominal)40
ScoreMinisterial score = 35.0, ArticleFromJournal
Ministerial score (2013-2016) = 40.0, ArticleFromJournal
Publication indicators WoS Impact Factor: 2017 = 2.324 (2) - 2017=2.77 (5)
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* presented citation count is obtained through Internet information analysis and it is close to the number calculated by the Publish or Perish system.