Vegetation and climate during Late Holocene in Garhwal Himalaya
Keywords:Vegetation, Palaeoenvironment, Garhwal Himalaya, Late Holocene, India
Pollen analysis of a 5 metre deep profile from Chharaka Tal (Sat Tal) in Garhwal Himalaya has brought out that during 2800-1900 BP mixed conifer-broad leaved temperate forests comprising chiefly Pinus, Cedrus, Betula, Quercus associated with Abies, Alnus, Salix and Carpinus grew in the region under cool and moist conditions, Later on, during 1900-1200 BP the temperate forests continued but with reduced frequencies of Pinus, Betula, Quercus, Carpinus, Alnus; sedges, however, improved. This change in vegetation composition reflects the deterioration of the climate. The increase in frequencies of sedges indicates the transformation of the lake into a swamp. Subsequent to this period, the expansion of Pinus, Cedrus and Abies together with non-arboreal elements, viz., sedges, grasses, Artemisia, Ranunculaceae, etc. indicates further deterioration of climate.