Fraser Island is the world's largest island composed completely of sand. This photo captures the layers of carbon sequestered in this sand from decomposed plant matter. The light grey layer at the bottom of the photo is the former site of a lake. The dark, compacted area in the middle also formed the bed of this lake, but has been less disrupted over time. The yellow sand holds less carbon (black tint), but reveals a midden, or location where aboriginal people dined on shellfish thousands of years ago. Stone tools brought over from the mainland, white shells and charcoal preserved for thousands of years have been unearthed as the sand shifts. A Casuarina equisetifolia (horsetail casuarina) and a pandanis, two salt tolerant flora are located in the upper right and left corners respectively. The vegetation helps secure the sand from extreme drifting.
Images and metadata in the Macalester Views Project database are provided with permission of the content providers/copyright holders. The photographer or artist holds copyright for these images. Content for this collection is licensed under a Creative Commons license 3.0 for non-commercial, non-derivative works. The exception to this is use by Macalester College for informational and promotional publications if approved by copyright owner.