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Robert Tinkler

Doctor of Philosophy, (Earth Science)
Study Completed: 2014
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
A high resolution record of late quaternary climatic and environmental change in Taranaki, New Zealand

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Mr Tinkler focused on vegetation and interpreted climate change in southern and western Taranaki over the last 80,000 years (the late Quaternary period). He achieved this using fossil pollen extracted from peat and lignite deposits to determine the floral assemblage and temperature profiles. In addition, he was the first to extract aerosolic quartz dust from peat deposits in New Zealand to elucidate wind patterns for the last 40,000 years. His research has resulted in a new western North Island vegetation and climate history for the late Quaternary period. Average temperatures between 24,000 and 18,000 years ago (the Last Glacial Maximum) in the western North Island were around 5.7°C cooler than present and were accompanied by strong winds. These temperatures contrast with the period 15,000 to 10,000 years ago when average temperatures were within 0.6°C of modern day temperatures and light winds predominated.  

Emeritus Professor Vince Neall
Dr Marcus Vandergoes
Dr Katherine Holt

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