elm decline

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elm decline The sharp decrease in the amount of elm (Ulmus) pollen that occurs throughout north-western Europe in soil horizons radiocarbon-dated within 100–200 years of 5000bp. Associated changes in vegetation vary from one site to another, as do the elm species involved (e.g. U. glabra in northern Britain and possibly U. minor in Denmark). It has been suggested that the decline is linked to the activities of early farmers, but it may have been caused by Dutch elm disease.