Palaeohydrology and climate

 

Palaeohydrological fieldwork in Kilnagarnagh BogPlate 1 Palaeohydrological fieldwork in Kilnagarnagh Bog, Co Offaly.The aim of palaeohydrological investigations is to reconstruct hydrological sequences that display wet-dry changes over the course of the mire’s development. Investigating sequences from archaeological sites, such as trackways in raised bogs, enables reconstruction of local conditions aiding the interpretation of human activity within wetlands.

Sampling EdercloonPlate 2 Investigating a sequence from an archaeological site in Edercloon, Co Longford.

 

 

 

These may relate to changing local conditions or have wider implications for climate. Microscopic fauna, such as testate amoebae (Protozoa: Rhizopoda), unicellular shelled animals found in abundance on the surface of a bog, which are sensitive to changes in hydrology are utilised to reconstruct the hydrological history of raised bogs.

Coring EdercloonPlate 3 Peat core containing wood fragments and visible banding. This core segment was extracted with a Russian peat sampler

 

 

Plant macrofossils including the remains of /Sphagnum/ mosses, heather, cotton grass, reeds, sedges and wood allow identification of local vegetation and hydrological change. Studies in palaeohydrology typically derived from raised or blanket mires and increasingly are carried out in association with archaeological investigations.