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High-resolution mollusc record from the Mituchovci tufa (western Slovakia): a reference for the Holocene succession of Western Carpathian mid-elevation forests

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Rok publikování 2021
Druh Článek v odborném periodiku
Časopis / Zdroj Boreas
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Přírodovědecká fakulta

Klíčová slova molluscs; western Slovakia; White Carpathians; palaeoecology; pollen; plant macrofossils
Popis The Western Carpathian Mountains have been attracting palaeoecologists for a long time, recently mainly to seek direct evidence of northern cryptic refugia in this region. We investigated a rich Holocene mollusc record in the White Carpathian Mountains, capturing a gradual development of forest malacofaunas under stable environmental conditions. To obtain precise data about colonization and extinction events for particular species, we applied a high-resolution depth-age model. Early Holocene assemblages revealed both the presence of Early Holocene relics and an early appearance of closed-canopy forest species that might indicate a cryptic glacial refugium nearby. Many forest species peaking at the Holocene forest optimum, including anthropophobic arboricole land snails (Bulgarica cana and Macrogastra borealis), were present since the Early Holocene as well. After 4000 cal. a BP, forest vegetation composition changed, and the environment became less suitable for woodland snails (i.e. calcium and moisture level decreased). This change was indicated by the disappearance of many sensitive forest species. Most of the exclusively forest species reappeared during the early Middle Ages because of dense beech forest development. However, in the late Middle Ages, the study site was deforested and became an open wetland. The existence of pollen, plant macro-remains, and stable isotope data allowed us to compare the recorded mollusc succession to the signal derived from these proxies. Hence, we propose that the Mituchovci site should be considered a model for the Holocene development of mollusc woodland faunas in the (Outer) Western Carpathians and one of the main reference sites for central European mollusc succession.
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