Australia: The Land Where Time Began

A biography of the Australian continent 

Australian Tertiary Phytogeography - Palynoflroas - Pliocene

Early Pliocene

Rainforest underwent a brief resurgence during this period, though on a much reduced scale when compared with earlier times, not completely replacing the myrtaceous forests. It is believed there was probably a mosaic of forests, the rainforest growing in the wetter habitats, the floristic composition varying between forests, the drier areas being occupied by wet sclerophyll forests.

Nothofagus pollen was common in the Lachlan Valley, but much less so at Jemalong Gap (Martin, 1987). This site had a number of rainforest species that were absent from the Lachlan Valley, Cupanieae, Macaranga/Mallotus, Helicia/Orites/Macadamia and Symplacos. It is believed Gymnosperms were possibly more abundant in the Early Pliocene.

Middle-Late Pliocene

The wet sclerophyll forests again replaced the rainforest towards the latest Pliocene. The rainforests were replaced, both angiosperms and gymnosperms, by the increasingly dry sclerophyll forests of myrtaceous species. Herbaceous pollen also became more common.

Latest Pliocene-Pleistocene

At this time woodlands and grasslands/herbfields became more common as the vegetation shifted to open type.

Sources & Further reading

H.A. Martin in Hill, Robert S., (ed.), 1994, History of the Australian Vegetation, Cambridge University Press.




Journey Back Through Time
Experience Australia
Aboriginal Australia
National Parks
Photo Galleries
Site Map
                                                                                           Author: M.H.Monroe  Email:     Sources & Further reading