Flora of Beringia

The vegetation of Ice Age Beringia was a mosaic of different plants.  Today it is possible to learn about this vegetation by studying preserved pollen and the remains of the plants themselves. These remains are often found frozen in glacial mucks and lake bottoms. Some remains have been found in the stomachs of mummified Ice Age animals, such as the mammoth and bison.  In some instances, preservation of the plant remains is remarkable. Scientists have been able to germinate and grow healthy plants from 10,000 year old lupine seeds that were discovered from a prehistoric lemming nest found in the Sixty Mile River area of the Klondike.  An analysis of the stomach contents from mammoths plus other research material, indicates that the following plants were in existence at the time of Beringia:

  • Columbine
  • Sage
  • YarrowCinquefoil
  • Jacob’s Ladder
  • Arctic Lupine
  • Wind Flower
  • Balsam Poplar
  • Dwarf Willow
  • Dwarf Birch
  • Sedges
  • Cotton-grass

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