Vegetation History and Archaeobotany

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 319–330 | Cite as

Representation of Picea pollen in modern and surface samples from Central European Russia

  • Maria B. NosovaEmail author
  • Elena E. Severova
  • Olga A. Volkova
  • Jana V. Kosenko
Original Article


Picea pollen abundance (percentage and PAR) was investigated in 23 Tauber pollen traps located in the mixed coniferous-broadleaved forest zone, broadleaved forest zone and forest-steppe zone in the European part of Russia. Modern data were compared with fossil pollen diagrams. In the modern spectra of non-forest zones average Picea pollen percentage is about 1 %, the highest values (up to 3 %) are usually connected with open locations and reflect the regional component of pollen rain. Within the coniferous forest belt average pollen abundance is about 10 %, but this value varies considerably from 1 to 40 % depending on local characteristics of sampling points. The lowest Picea pollen percentages (1 % and less) are observed in the pollen spectra of oligo- and mesotrophic mires, thus the level of 1 % can be significant for Picea and can indicate the continuous range of Picea. For an appropriate interpretation of low Picea pollen abundance in fossil samples the abundance should be analyzed together with other components of the pollen spectra. Large areas of Picea forests are not always reflected in pollen spectra as a high Picea percentage/PAR, as in unfavorable climatic or hydrological conditions the pollen production of Picea forests can be very low. Comparison of fossil and modern pollen spectra shows that a modern analogue of Holocene Picea forests in Central European Russia has not yet been discovered.


Picea Holocene Modern pollen Surface samples Tauber trap Russia 



We thank numerous people: Mikhail Yablokov, Elena Volkova and Olga Burova for their help in the field; Oxana Cherednichenko for help in creating figures; Elena Novenko for creating and supporting the Russian Palynological Database, which we used for this study; Daniil Kozlov for his help in improving the vegetation data in GIS. We are also thankful to Sheila Hicks and Anneli Poska for discussions and critical comments on the manuscript. The study was financed by Russian Foundation for Basic Research, project RFBR 11-04-01467a.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria B. Nosova
    • 1
    Email author
  • Elena E. Severova
    • 2
  • Olga A. Volkova
    • 2
  • Jana V. Kosenko
    • 2
  1. 1.Main Botanical Garden RASMoscowRussia
  2. 2.Higher Plants DepartmentMoscow State UniversityMoscowRussia

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