• 14C Variations from Tasmanian Trees—Preliminary Results

      McPhail, Steve; Barbetti, Mike; Francey, Roger; Bird, Trevor; Dolezal, Jiri (American Journal of Science, 1983-01-01)
      Huon pine is endemic to Tasmania. It has well-defined annual rings, may live for over 2000 years, and is particularly resistant to decay. Celery-top pine has similar characteristics and may live for 800 years. As part of a multi-disciplinary study of these trees and their habitat, a simple wood pretreatment method for isotope analysis is described. The solvent-acid-alkali-acid sequence yields a value of Delta-14C = -16 +/- 6% for AD 1941-45 Huon pine heartwood; Delta-4C for extracts containing various proportions of post-AD 1955 carbon are also presented. Delta-14C measurements on super-canopy and subcanopy leaves from Celery-top pines are compared and used to place an upper limit of 10% on the amount of sub-canopy CO2 assimilated by sapling leaves, originating from decaying litter-mass. 14C ages from well-preserved logs illustrate the potential for a continuous Holocene chronology from 7400 years BP to the present. A 12,000-year-old Celery-top log has also been found.