High-resolution pollen analysis of annually laminated sediments from Lake Suigetsu in Japan revealed that climate amelioration at 16,500 varve years before present (vy BP) triggered the expansion of cool temperate deciduous broad-leaved forest. The oldest pottery appearance in Japan coincided with this climate amelioration. Significant vegetation change occurred from 15,000 to 14,500vyBP. The period during 15,000-14,500vyBP was a time of ecological transition from a Glacial-type ecosystem, eventually destroyed by global warming, to a new Postglacial-type ecosystem represented by that in Lake Suigetsu. It is believed that the completion of this ecological transition actually took nearly 500-800 years. This drastic change in the ecosystem had forced people to create a new strategy of adaptation. The Japanese Neolithic Jomon culture, mainly sustained by gathering nuts and fishing, was widely established at this time. On the other hand, the cold period which correlates with the Younger Dryas in Europe had no significant ecological influence on the Japanese ecosystem and human culture.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.