IJSRP, Volume 6, Issue 3, March 2016 Edition [ISSN 2250-3153]
Divya V, Padmalal D and Mohanan C.N
The climate system of the Earth undergoes dramatic changes over the past few millennia and information about these changes can best be obtained from the study of a spectrum of climate dependent natural processes that are measurable using geological archives. Such measurements of climate parameters using proxies in geological archives are now being used widely to refine climate predictive models deduced from limited instrumental measurements. Although several archives are used to measure climate parameters using proxy evidences, the potentials of soils are rarely being used in paleo-climate studies. Here, we examine records of climate changes in a few soil profiles in the forestlands of the Southern Western Ghats, SW India. The altitudinal height of the studied locations ranges from 150 m to 2000 m above msl. Clay, sandy clay and sandy clay loam are the dominant soil types of the area. Among the different forest categories of the study area, tropical montane forests sequester higher organic carbon and nitrogen in the soils. Radiocarbon dates of the organic rich samples of the soil profiles vary from 3150 ± 90 yrs BP to Modern age. The study reveals that the soil of the study area is developed in high rain fall events punctuated by a dry event at 1500-1000 yrs BP.