Leaf of Quercus (oak) found in an old interglacial varved sediment at Trelde klint [see published article]
A project funded by Carlsberg foundation (2009-2010) aimed to revise the terrestrial interglacial stratigraphy and palaeoenvironments in Denmark as was the topic of my postdoc at Aarhus University.
According to classical stratigraphical scheme there were only three interglacials, the Eemian, the Holsteinian and the Harreskovian. Hence, marine record suggested a series of about eight interglacials for the last 800.000 years. The project therefore included palynological studies of a suite of newly discovered interglacial sites supplemented with an analysis of other sedimentary proxies. The ultimate goal was to find correlation with a number of Central European interglacial sequences with an attempt to determine main pattern in ecosystem changes by numerical analyses and comparisons.
By looking at ecosystem dynamics within a number of interglacial sequences we found an interesting common pattern in their evolution driven mainly by long-term changes in soil. Additionally by analysing newly discovered pollen sequences, dating and correlating with other known records we found a new interglacial with distinct flora. For more information see our papers [2011 Journal of Biogeography, 2013 Boreas]
A large database of interglacial records collected within the project now serves for new scientific aims within the IGNEX project (lead by John Birks at University of Bergen).