Composition of Atlantic forest in northern Carpathian foothills, from a charcoal record from a Neolithic domestic site at Żerków (Poland): The relevance of oak and hazel
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W. Szafer Institute of Botany, Polish Academy of Sciences, Lubicz 46, 31-512 Kraków, Poland
Online publication date: 2016-06-22
Publication date: 2016-06-22
Acta Palaeobotanica 2016; 56(1): 91–109
A study of firewood remains from the foothills of the Western Carpathians in Poland yielded information about the history of forest communities growing in the vicinity of human settlements in the Atlantic period. The anthracological material was collected at Żerków, a Neolithic site of the Linear Band Pottery culture, situated on the highest parts of a hill covered by fertile soil. The anthracological assemblage was dominated by Quercus and Corylus avellana, followed by Acer and Maloideae, suggesting that those taxa probably were significant constituents of the local forest during the Atlantic period. Based on the ecological requirements of the identified taxa, such communities occupied areas of more open canopy, but it is unclear whether the material reflects the composition of the primeval forest or rather the presence of open canopy created by human impacts on local ecosystems during the period of settlement.