Project: Southern High-Latitude Vegetation and Climate Change at the Eocene - Oligocene Transition and the Role of Tasman Gateway Deepening.
My PhD is focussed on using fossil pollen and spores across selected sites in Antarctica and Australasis (Prydz Bay, East Tasman Plateau, Australian Brown Creek, Cape Foulwind and the Kakanui River) to reconstruct past vegetation at the EOT. The main challenge hampering the understanding of the evolving climate of the Cenozoic Southern high-latitude are the lack of well-dated terrestrial vegetation records. This is because most palaeovegetation reconstruction in the southern high-latitude have heavily relied on isolated plant fossils such as leaves, woods and palynomorphs (pollen and spores) with relatively low time resolution and dating control.
My main objectives are;
1. To erect a high-resolution palynological record with robust dating control for selected sites.
2. To comapare and integrate the palynological data from all the sites and perform detailed analyses of the timing of vegetation changes if any, at the EOT to identify the driving force(s) of climate change.
3. To comapare terrestrial (sporomorph) data with marine (published Tex86 based SST) from Site 1172 and explore the impact of temperature on vegetation dynamics between these two proxies.