Browsing by Author "Taffs, K"
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- ItemGlacial and Holocene terrestrial temperature variability in subtropical east Australia as inferred from branched GDGT distributions in a sediment core from Lake McKenzie.(Elsevier Inc., 2014-07-01) Woltering, M; Atahan, P; Grice, K; Heijnis, H; Taffs, K; Dodson, JRBranched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraether (GDGT) distributions observed in a sediment core from Lake McKenzie were utilized to quantitatively reconstruct the pattern of mean annual air temperature (MAAT) from coastal subtropical eastern Australia between 37 and 18.3 cal ka BP and 14.0 cal ka BP to present. Both the reconstructed trend and amplitude of MAAT changes from the top of the sediment core were nearly identical to a local instrumental MAAT record from Fraser Island, providing confidence that in this sediment core branched GDGTs could be used to produce a quantitative record of past MAAT. The reconstructed trend of MAAT during 37 to 183 cal ka BP and timing of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in the Lake McKenzie record were in agreement with previously published nearby marine climate records. The amplitude of lower-than-present MAAT during the LGM potentially provides information on the latitude of separation of the Tasman Front from the East Australian current in the subtropical western Pacific. The Lake McKenzie record shows an earlier onset of near modern day warm temperatures in the early Holocene compared to marine records and the presence of a warmer than present day period during the mid-Holocene. © 2014, Elsevier Inc.
- ItemIncreasing the understanding and use of natural archives of ecosystem services, resilience and threholds to improve policy, science and practice(SAGE, 2014-12-04) Pearson, S; Lynch, AJJ; Plant, R; Cork, S; Taffs, K; Dodson, JR; Maynard, S; Gergis, J; Gell, PA; Thackway, R; Sealie, L; Donaldson, JDespite the great potential of palaeo-environmental information to strengthen natural resource policy, science and practical outcomes naturally occurring archives of palaeo-environmental and ecosystem service information have not been fully recognised or utilised to inform the development of environmental policy. In this paper, we describe how Australian palaeo-environmental science is improving environmental understanding through local studies and regional syntheses that inform us about past conditions, extreme conditions and altered ecosystem states. Australian innovations in ecosystem services research and palaeo-environmental science contribute in five important contexts: discussions about environmental understanding and management objectives, improving access to information, improved knowledge about the dynamics of ecosystem services, increasing understanding of environmental processes and resource availability, and engaging interdisciplinary approaches to manage ecosystem services. Knowledge of the past is an important starting point for setting present and future resource management objectives, anticipating consequences of trade-offs, sharing risk and evaluating and monitoring the ongoing availability of ecosystem services. Palaeo-environmental information helps reframe discussions about desirable futures and collaborative efforts between scientists, planners, managers and communities. However, further steps are needed to translate the ecosystem services concept into ecosystem services policy and tangible management objectives and actions that are useful, feasible and encompass the range of benefits to people from ecosystems. We argue that increased incorporation of palaeo-environmental information into policy and decision-making is needed for evidence-based adaptive management to enhance sustainability of ecosystem functions and reduce long-term risks. © 2020 by SAGE Publications
- ItemLate quaternary environmental change at Lake McKenzie, in subtropical eastern Australia: evidence from sedimentary carbon, nitrogen and biomarkers(Past Global Changes, 2013-02-13) Atahan, P; Heijnis, H; Le Métayer, P; Grice, K; Taffs, K; Hembrow, SC; Dodson, JRFraser Island is part of a large sand mass that extends along the subtropical coastline of south-eastern Queensland. The island is a World Heritage site, listed for its unique natural environment that includes numerous perched oligotrophic dune lakes and a diverse suite of coastal and subtropical vegetation communities. Here we present geochemical and microfossil information for a sediment core collected from Lake McKenzie, in the island’s centre. AMS 14C and 210Pb dating has been conducted and indicates a basal age of ca. 37,000 cal. BP. A hiatus in the sedimentary record is apparent at around 25 cm depth and spans the time period from ca. 18,280 to 13,990 cal yr BP. Elemental and stable isotope measurements of carbon and nitrogen in bulk organic matter, along with biomarker and compound specific carbon isotope analyses, show a clear shift in lake conditions appearing with the re-commencement of sediment accumulation following this hiatus. A marked decline in the abundance of microfossils of the green colonial algae Botryococcus, coincides with a distinct change in composition of Botryococcus derived lipids and a shift to more negative δ13C values of long chain odd n-alkane compounds. An increase in lake size around 13,990 cal yr BP is suggested by the recommencement of sediment accumulation at the site, and is presumably in response to increased effective precipitation. The lake McKenzie record provides a long-term perspective on changing environmental conditions in central Fraser Island.
- ItemLate quaternary environmental change at Lake McKenzie, Southeast Queensland: evidence from microfossils, biomarkers and stable isotope analysis(University of Western Australia, 2013-07-10) Atahan, P; Heijnis, H; Dodson, JR; Grice, K; Le Métayer, P; Taffs, K; Hembrow, SC; Woltering, M; Zawadzki, AUnravelling links between climate change and vegetation response during the Quaternary is a research priority, and needed if the climate-environment interactions of modern systems are to be fully understood. Using a sediment core from Lake McKenzie, Fraser Island, we reconstruct changes in the lake ecosystem and surrounding vegetation over the last ca. 36.9 cal kyr BP. Evidence is drawn from multiple sources, including pollen, micro-charcoal, biomarker and stable isotope (C and N) analyses, and is used to improve understanding about the timing and spatial scale of past changes that have occurred locally and in the southeast Queensland region. The glacial period of the record, from ca. 36.9-18.3 cal kyr BP, is characterised by lower lake water levels and increased abundance of, or closer proximity to, plants of the aquatic and littoral zone. High abundance of biomarkers and microfossils of the colonial green alga Botryococcus occur at this time and include high variation in individual botryococcene 13C values. A distinct period of dry or ephemeral conditions at the site is detected during deglaciation, causing a hiatus in the sedimentary record covering the time period from ca. 18.3-14.0 cal kyr BP. The recommencement of sediment accumulation around 14.0 cal kyr BP occurs with evidence of lower fire activity in the area and reduced abundance of terrestrial herbs in the surrounding sclerophyll vegetation. The Lake McKenzie record conforms to existing records from Fraser Island by containing evidence for a mid-Holocene dry period, spanning the time period from ca. 6.1-2.5 cal kyr BP. © The Authors
- ItemPollen, biomarker and stable isotope evidence of late quaternary environmental change at Lake McKenzie, southeast Queensland(Springer, 2014-10-30) Atahan, P; Heijnis, H; Dodson, JR; Grice, K; Le Métayer, P; Taffs, K; Hembrow, SC; Woltering, M; Zawadzki, AUnravelling links between climate change and vegetation response during the Quaternary is important if the climate–environment interactions of modern systems are to be fully understood. Using a sediment core from Lake McKenzie, Fraser Island, we reconstruct changes in the lake ecosystem and surrounding vegetation over the last ca. 36.9 cal kyr. Evidence is drawn from multiple sources, including pollen, micro-charcoal, biomarker and stable isotope (C and N) analyses, and is used to gain a better understanding of the nature and timing of past ecological changes that have occurred at the site. The glacial period of the record, from ca. 36.9 to 18.3 cal kyr BP, is characterised by an increased abundance of plants of the aquatic and littoral zone, indicating lower lake water levels. High abundance of biomarkers and microfossils of the colonial green alga Botryococcus occurred at this time and included large variation in individual botryococcene δ13C values. A slowing or ceasing of sediment accumulation occurred during the time period from ca. 18.3 to 14.0 cal kyr BP. By around 14.0 cal kyr BP fire activity in the area was reduced, as was abundance of littoral plants and terrestrial herbs, suggesting wetter conditions from that time. The Lake McKenzie pollen record conforms to existing records from Fraser Island by containing evidence of a period of reduced effective precipitation that commenced in the mid-Holocene. © Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014
- ItemVertical distribution of diatoms in the sediment of Al-Huwaiza Marsh, Southern Iraq and their use as indicators of environmental changes(Algological Studies, 2016-01-01) Al-Handal, A; Taffs, K; Abdullah, D; Zawadzki, AThe Mesopotamian marshlands are one of the most internationally important wetlands in the Middle East as it constitutes a nursing ground for many species of birds migrating from North Europe as well as for its rich biodiversity. These marshlands have undergone significant environmental changes during the last three decades owing to decreasing freshwater discharge which has led to water quality deterioration and a changing hydrological regime. This has had a considerable effect on the fauna and flora of the marshes, diminishing their ecological value and significance. The work presented here is the first attempt to investigate the marshes environmental condition during the past two centuries using paleolimnology, specifically diatoms as bioindicators in a sediment core. 80 species of diatom belonging to 35 genera were identified. The taxa encountered in the core are a mixture of fresh and brackish water forms. These are epiphytic and benthic taxa, no planktonic species were found. The fossil diatom community shows that the marshes have been exposed to different periods of salinization as well as eutrophication. The dominance of pollution tolerant species in the core indicates poor water quality for the past 160 years. Paleolimnology is important to understand past environmental conditions and forms a milestone for successful future restoration process. Further work is required to extend the time scale to identify natural ecological states and thresholds to guide international aid restoration projects.