Palaeozoic co-evolution of rivers and vegetation: a synthesis of current knowledge

Gibling, M. R. and Davies, N. S. and Falcon-Lang, H. J. and Bashforth, A. R. and DiMichele, W. A. and Rygel, M. C. and Ielpi, A. (2014) Palaeozoic co-evolution of rivers and vegetation: a synthesis of current knowledge. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 125 (5-6). pp. 524-533. DOI 10.1016/j.pgeola.2013.12.003

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Abstract

As vegetation evolved during the Palaeozoic Era, terrestrial landscapes were substantially transformed, especially during the ∼120 million year interval from the Devonian through the Carboniferous. Early Palaeozoic river systems were of sheet-braided style – broad, shallow, sandbed rivers with non-cohesive and readily eroded banks. Under the influence of evolving roots and trees that stabilised banks and added large woody debris to channels, a range of new fluvial planform and architectural styles came to prominence, including channelled- and island-braided systems, meandering and anabranching systems, and stable muddy floodplains. River systems co-evolved with plants and animals, generating new ecospace that we infer would have promoted biological evolution. By the end of the Carboniferous, most landforms characteristic of modern fluvial systems were in existence.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2013AREP; IA67;
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Journal or Publication Title: Proceedings of the Geologists' Association
Volume: 125
Page Range: pp. 524-533
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.pgeola.2013.12.003
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2014 18:25
Last Modified: 09 Apr 2015 09:43
URI: http://eprints.esc.cam.ac.uk/id/eprint/2994

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