The Paleolimnology Home Page

Biology Department, Indiana University

Welcome to the paleolimnology home page, intended as a central Web resource for those interested in and/or practicing paleolimnology. This page contains information of general interest to paleolimnologists and links to other useful Internet resources. Most of the information is downloaded from postings to various LISTSERVers. Please contact me at the address at the bottom of the page with information, links, or other contributions you would like to share with the community.
P. Roger Sweets

Last updated: 1 May, 1997



Paleolimnology is the study of past freshwater, saline, and brackish environments. In some cases, the history of the water body itself is important, but typically information is used in a wider geographical and ecological context.

Often a core is taken from the sediments of a limnological system, and the fossils, geological and chemical signals that are preserved in the core are the clues to revealing the ecological history of the lake and the surrounding landscape. These clues can often result in quantitative and qualitative reconstructions of important lake chemistry and biology.
And that is a small part of the story!


as posted to the LISTSERVs


The Canadian Association of Palynologists has an excellent meeting list.

Archaeometry and Archaeology meetings are listed by the Society for Archaeological Sciences

The 1997 Joint Annual Meeting of the Geological Association and Mineralogical Associations of Canada
Ottawa, Ontario; May 19-21, 1997
Canadian Quaternary Association, 8th Biennial Meeting
Montreal, Quebec; May 22-24, 1997
1st International Conference on Applications of Micropaleontology in Environmental Sciences
Hosted by the The Porter Super-Center for Ecological and Environmental Studies and Institute for Nature Conservation Research, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel; 9-13 June 1997
International Geological Correlation Programme (IGCP) Project no. 396 'Continental Shelves in the Quaternary'
VENUE - University of Durham, UK; 20-24th July, 1997
Canadian Association of Geographers (they are having some paleo applicable sessions)
Memorial University of Newfoundland  (St. John's) August 19-24, 1997
The 7th International Symposium on Palaeolimnology
Heiligkreuztal/Riedlingen, Germany; 28th Aug.-2nd Sept. 1997

UNESCO IGCP Project 335 "Biotic Recoveries from Mass Extinctions"
Prague, Czech Republic, September 12-14, 1997
The INQUA-Subcommission on European Quaternary Stratigraphy
The Late Pleistocene in Eastern Europe: Stratigraphy, palaeoenvironment and climate;
Vilnius (Lithuania); September 14-19, 1997
Palynostratigraphy at Low Latitudes
Porlamar Venezuela;  16-19 November, 1997.
Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers,
Kingston University, Kingston, UK; January 5th - 8th, 1998
The Geological and Mineralogical Associations of Canada  
Laval University, Quebec City, Canada; May 18-21, 1998
XV INQUA 1999 Congress
Durban, South Africa; 3-11 August 1999

Courses & Educational Opportunities

The Environmental Change Research Centre at University College London has many first rate courses for MSc or PhD students in palaeoecology, environmental archaeology or other areas of environmental science.

Geography of the West Field Camp: Basin & Range; 23 June-20 July 1997

Central Washington University
Don't forget the yearly summer courses on diatoms. Info can be found on my Diatom home page

Colleges with paleo opportunities
most of these have interesting information on paleoecological topics in general


Graduate Studies

Professional Societies and Organizations

The American Quaternary Association or AMQUA (includes a directory of N.Am. Quaternary Scientists)
American Association of Stratigraphic Palynologists
The Australasian Quaternary Association
Canadian Quaternary Association
Canadian Association of Palynologists
The International Union for Quaternary Research or INQUA
The Irish Association for Quaternary Studies (IQUA)
Society for Archaeological Sciences
Southeast (U.S.) Friends of the Pleistocene. The various FOP groups host frequent field trips.
The Quaternary Research Association (UK)

Journals on the Web

Great sources for notes about subscription, submission, and journal indices.


If you are unfamiliar with LISTSERVers, you can access a brief list of commands. There is a WWW home page for LISTSERVers as well. The following LISTSERVers may be of interest to paleolimnologists:

Subscribe at
Subscribe at You can now access archives of the QUATERNARY list.
Subscribe at
This is a new address for this list.
Subscribe at
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FAUNMAP-L Web site
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Top Paleo Internet pages

The Quaternary Page
Probably the most comprehensive list of paleo related Web sites.
INQUA File Boutique
Louis Maher's indispensable page for a lot of good paleo information, including downloadable programs, mostly concerned with data-handling. Includes copies of his Newsletter on Data Handling Methods. The ftp address is:
World Data Center-A
Holds the North American Pollen Database as well as the rest of the NOAA/NGDC Paleoclimatology Program data. Also, truly outstanding free programs such as SiteSeer, ShowTime, MapPad, and the astounding 'PaleoVu'. These programs provide graphical representations in space and time of all the various kinds of paleo data held by the NGDC. A must stop on the PaleoCyberTour. Substitute the term 'gopher' or 'ftp' for 'www' to access other Internet avenues.
The Institute for Arctic and Alpine Research (out of Univ. of Colorado at Boulder) now has a fine Web page.
The INQUA Commission on Glaciation
Faunmap is an electronic database of mammal species during the last 40,000 years in the United States. It has been developed at the Illinois State Museum.
Australian National University Palynology and Paleoclimatology
A Paleoatlas and literature review
Brought to you by the INQUA Commission on Land Carbon.
Canadian Association of Palynologists
CAP's excellent Web Page has many available resources including meeting lists and more useful Web pages.
Oak Ridge Data Archive
The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) is one of nine DAACs sponsored by NASA as part of the Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS). They focus on biogeochemical dynamics and ecological data based on field measurements.
The BUGS database *NEW*
A draft of the BUGS database, which includes the greater part of the North European Lateglacial and Holocene record, is available from the Sheffield ftp.  This includes Excel files and Access database stuff...
Late Quaternary Sea Level *NEW*
from the USGS

Other Web pages

Discussions, Literature, and Other Tidbits

New or updated!

Jump back to the Diatom Page

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( Internet Resources )

Last updated: 1 May, 1997
Page design and comments: P. Roger Sweets
Copyright 1995, The Trustees of Indiana University