This meeting will be held virtually via Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory Zoom. Please contact the seminar organizer with your full name to be cleared from the waiting room.
Opening the molecular history book: what sediment-DNA can tell us about past ecosystems – and where the challenges lay
Applying molecular techniques to environmental samples is one of the new promising approaches in geosciences, offering opportunities for large-scale biodiversity surveys, invasive species detection, and long-term monitoring of species that do not commonly preserve as fossils. In this talk, I will show how sediment-DNA, in combination with traditional sedimentary proxies, brings a new perspective to Holocene human-environment interactions in alpine environments by providing direct evidence for mammal presence and diversity and linking this information to physical and ecological factors such as soil erosion and vegetation change. I will also highlight how a thorough characterisation of the sedimentology is essential for the interpretation of sediment-DNA results and what challenges remain to be tackled in this new research field.