, Volume 48, Issue 4, pp 651-667,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 01 Aug 2012

The Late Vistulian and Holocene evolution of Jezioro Lake: a record of environmental change in southern Poland found in deposits and landforms


Jezioro Lake is the only natural lake in southern Poland outside mountainous areas to have existed continuously since the Pleistocene. The record of environmental change in the Late Vistulian (Weichselian) and Holocene is preserved in the deposits and landforms around the lake. This paper presents the results of paleogeographical and paleoecological research that emabled us to reconstruct the history of the Jezioro Lake. At the end of the Vistulian period, the outlet of the lake was blocked by a parabolic dune moving in from the west. Limnic sedimentation was evident in the sediment core at all levels from the Holocene, with remains of Cladocera, Chironomidae larvae, and aquatic plants. The lake did not disappear at that time, although its area decreased by a factor of 12 by the end of the period. Paleobotanical research permitted the reconstruction of sequences of plant communities and changes in nutrient status and water level. An initial oligotrophic lake, as indicated by the presence of Isoëtes lacustris L., changed to a eutrophic lake, as indicated by the presence of Potamogeton natans L. and Nuphar sp., then the lake progressed to the present-day dystrophic lake that is surrounded by a swamp. The profile of organic deposits contains a record of environmental change at least since the Younger Dryas in southern Poland.