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Patterns of terrestrial and limnologic development in the northern Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (USA) during the late-glacial/early-Holocene transition

Krause, Teresa R., Lu, Yanbin, Whitlock, Cathy, Fritz, Sherilyn C., Pierce, Kenneth L.
Palaeogeography, palaeoclimatology, palaeoecology 2015 v.422 pp. 46-56
Abies, Bacillariophyceae, Picea, Pinus, Pseudotsuga, altitude, atmospheric circulation, charcoal, ecosystems, ice, lakes, landscapes, pollen, snowpack, solar radiation, storms, subalpine forests, summer, temperature, winter, Montana
A high-resolution record of pollen, charcoal, diatom, and lithologic data from Dailey Lake in southwestern Montana describes postglacial terrestrial and limnologic development from ice retreat ca. 16,000calyr BP through the early Holocene. Following deglaciation, the landscape surrounding Dailey Lake was sparsely vegetated, and erosional input into the lake was high. As summer insolation increased and ice recessional processes subsided, Picea parkland developed and diatoms established in the lake at 13,300calyr BP. Closed subalpine forests of Picea, Abies, and Pinus established at 12,300calyr BP followed by the development of open Pinus and Pseudotsuga forests at 10,200calyr BP. Increased planktic diatom abundance indicates a step-like warming at 13,100calyr BP, and alternations between planktic and tychoplankic taxa suggest changes in lake thermal structure between 12,400 and 11,400calyr BP. An increasingly open forest, in combination with increased benthic diatoms, indicates warm dry summers during the early Holocene after 11,400calyr BP, in contrast to nearby records in northern Yellowstone that register prolonged summer-wet conditions until ca. 8000calyr BP. Because of its low elevation, Dailey Lake was apparently sensitive to the direct effects of increased summer insolation on temperature and effective moisture, registering dry summers. In contrast, higher elevations in northern Yellowstone responded to the indirect effects of an amplified seasonal insolation cycle on atmospheric circulation, including elevated winter snowpack and/or increased summer convective storms as a result of enhanced monsoonal circulation.