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Discontinuous late Pleistocene-Holocene pollen records from Auckland Domain, northern New Zealand

by Mark Horrocks last modified 2009-09-09 09:39 AM

Horrocks M, O’Loan A, Wallace R. 2009. New Zealand Journal of Botany 47, 239-247.


Two sediment sequences from Pukekawa crater, Auckland Domain contain silty clay underlain by fibrous peat. The peat contains a pollen flora and wood indicating the presence of a warm-temperate, conifer-hardwood forest with Metrosideros, Agathis, Prumnopitys taxifolia, P. ferruginea, and especially Dacrydium. Radiocarbon dates indicate that the peat was deposited before the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM).

Absence of tephras and small amounts of Fuscospora pollen indicate probable non-preservation of the LGM. The pollen flora of most of the clay contains Metrosideros, Ascarina and ferns, indicating post-LGM warmer, wetter conditions. The two uppermost samples contain exotic pollen indicating that they are post-European in origin. Excavation and levelling to form sports fields and parkland appears to have curtailed and mixed the Holocene record.


Late Pleistocene, Holocene, pollen, vegetation, climate change.

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