Heather Plumpton

Long-term impacts of drought on Chiquitano
tropical dry forests of South America

Research: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Heather_Plumpton



  • SAGES, University of Reading
  • Faculty of Science, University of Reading

Start date:

  • October 2014


Climate change is predicted to increase the length of the dry season in tropical South America. The response of dry forests to these drought conditions over the long-term is not well understood. One way to improve our understanding of how tropical dry forests respond to drought is to study how it responded in the past. For this study, the mid-Holocene (~6000 years BP) drier period is used an analogue for future climate change induced drought.

Using palaeo-vegetation proxies, including pollen, phytoliths and stable carbon isotopes, I am reconstructing vegetation changes in the Chiquitano dry forest of eastern lowland Bolivia throughout the Holocene to characterise the long-term response to drought. This will inform predictions of dry forests responses to future climate change.