Articles | Volume 68, issue 2
E&G Quaternary Sci. J., 68, 177–188, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/egqsj-68-177-2019
E&G Quaternary Sci. J., 68, 177–188, 2019
https://doi.org/10.5194/egqsj-68-177-2019
Research article
04 Sep 2019
Research article | 04 Sep 2019

Chemotaxonomic patterns of vegetation and soils along altitudinal transects of the Bale Mountains, Ethiopia, and implications for paleovegetation reconstructions – Part 1: stable isotopes and sugar biomarkers

Betelhem Mekonnen et al.

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Cited articles

Abbate, E., Bruni, P., and Sagri, M.: Geology of Ethiopia: A Review and Geomorphological Perspectives, in: Landscapes and Landforms of Ethiopia, edited by: Billi, P., Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht, 33–64, 2015. 
Amelung, W., Cheshire, M. V., and Guggenberger, G.: Determination of neutral and acidic sugars in soil by capillary gas liquid chromatography after trifluoroacetic acid hydrolysis, Soil Biol. Biochem., 28, 1631–1639, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0038-0717(96)00248-9, 1996. 
Belayneh, A., Yohannes, T., and Worku, A.: Recurrent and extensive forest fire incidence in the Bale Mountains National Park (BMNP), Ethiopia: Extent, Cause and Consequences, Int. J. Environ. Sci., 2, 29–39, 2013. 
Billi, P.: Geomorphological Landscapes of Ethiopia, in Landscapes and Landforms of Ethiopia, edited by: Billi, P., 3–32, Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht, 2015. 
Bonnefille, R.: Evidence for a Cooler and Drier Climate in Ethiopia 2.5 Mys, Nature, 303, 487–491, 1983. 
Short summary
The study evaluates the ability of stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N) and sugar biomarkers to distinguish Erica from the dominant vegetation of the Bale Mountains in order to reconstruct the past extent of Erica on the Sanetti Plateau. No significant differences in stable isotopes are found between the dominant plant species. Although Erica is characterized by quite high (G+M)/(A+X) ratios, it cannot be unambiguously distinguished from other plants due to degradation and soil microbial effects.