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Sample records for early pleistocene climate

  1. Late Pleistocene climate drivers of early human migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, Axel; Friedrich, Tobias

    2016-10-01

    On the basis of fossil and archaeological data it has been hypothesized that the exodus of Homo sapiens out of Africa and into Eurasia between ~50-120 thousand years ago occurred in several orbitally paced migration episodes. Crossing vegetated pluvial corridors from northeastern Africa into the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant and expanding further into Eurasia, Australia and the Americas, early H. sapiens experienced massive time-varying climate and sea level conditions on a variety of timescales. Hitherto it has remained difficult to quantify the effect of glacial- and millennial-scale climate variability on early human dispersal and evolution. Here we present results from a numerical human dispersal model, which is forced by spatiotemporal estimates of climate and sea level changes over the past 125 thousand years. The model simulates the overall dispersal of H. sapiens in close agreement with archaeological and fossil data and features prominent glacial migration waves across the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant region around 106-94, 89-73, 59-47 and 45-29 thousand years ago. The findings document that orbital-scale global climate swings played a key role in shaping Late Pleistocene global population distributions, whereas millennial-scale abrupt climate changes, associated with Dansgaard-Oeschger events, had a more limited regional effect.

  2. Shaped by uneven Pleistocene climate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Xinlei; Dong, Feng; Lei, Fumin

    2016-01-01

    had different impacts on different populations: clade N expanded after the last glacial maximum (LGM), whereas milder Pleistocene climate of east Asia allowed clade SE a longer expansion time (since MIS 5); clade SW expanded over a similarly long time as clade SE, which is untypical for European...

  3. Long-term climate record inferred from early-middle Pleistocene amphibian and squamate reptile assemblages at the Gran Dolina Cave, Atapuerca, Spain.

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    Blain, Hugues-Alexandre; Bailon, Salvador; Cuenca-Bescós, Gloria; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Bermúdez de Castro, José Maria; Carbonell, Eudald

    2009-01-01

    The Gran Dolina cave site is famous for having delivered some of the oldest hominin remains of Western Europe (Homo antecessor, ca. 960 ka). Moreover, the evidence of lithic industries throughout the long vertical section suggests occupation on the part of hominins from the latest early Pleistocene (levels TD3/4, TD5, and TD6) to the late middle Pleistocene (level TD10). The Gran Dolina Sondeo Sur (TDS) has furnished a great number of small-vertebrate remains; among them some 40,000 bones are attributed to amphibians and squamates. Although they do not differ specifically from the extant herpetofauna of the Iberian Peninsula, the overlap of their current distribution areas (= mutual climatic range method) in Spain can provide mean annual temperatures (MAT), the mean temperatures of the coldest (MTC) and warmest (MTW) months, and mean annual precipitation (MAP) estimations for each sub-level, and their change can be studied throughout the sequence. Results from the squamate and amphibian study indicate that during hominin occupation the MAT (10-13 degrees C) was always slightly warmer than at present in the vicinity of the Gran Dolina Cave, and the MAP (800-1000mm) was greater than today in the Burgos area. Climatic differences between "glacial" and "interglacial" phases are poorly marked. Summer temperatures (MTW) show stronger oscillations than winter temperatures (MTC), but seasonality remains almost unchanged throughout the sequence. These results are compared with those for large mammals, small mammals, and pollen analysis, giving a scenario for the palaeoclimatic conditions that occurred during the early to middle Pleistocene in Atapuerca, and hence a scenario for the hominins that once lived in the Sierra de Atapuerca.

  4. Transient nature of late Pleistocene climate variability.

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    Crowley, Thomas J; Hyde, William T

    2008-11-13

    Climate in the early Pleistocene varied with a period of 41 kyr and was related to variations in Earth's obliquity. About 900 kyr ago, variability increased and oscillated primarily at a period of approximately 100 kyr, suggesting that the link was then with the eccentricity of Earth's orbit. This transition has often been attributed to a nonlinear response to small changes in external boundary conditions. Here we propose that increasing variablility within the past million years may indicate that the climate system was approaching a second climate bifurcation point, after which it would transition again to a new stable state characterized by permanent mid-latitude Northern Hemisphere glaciation. From this perspective the past million years can be viewed as a transient interval in the evolution of Earth's climate. We support our hypothesis using a coupled energy-balance/ice-sheet model, which furthermore predicts that the future transition would involve a large expansion of the Eurasian ice sheet. The process responsible for the abrupt change seems to be the albedo discontinuity at the snow-ice edge. The best-fit model run, which explains almost 60% of the variance in global ice volume during the past 400 kyr, predicts a rapid transition in the geologically near future to the proposed glacial state. Should it be attained, this state would be more 'symmetric' than the present climate, with comparable areas of ice/sea-ice cover in each hemisphere, and would represent the culmination of 50 million years of evolution from bipolar nonglacial climates to bipolar glacial climates.

  5. Millennial-scale climate variations in western Mediterranean during late Pleistocene-early Holocene: multi-proxy analyses from Padul peatbog (southern Iberian Peninsula)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camuera, Jon; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; José Ramos-Román, María; García-Alix, Antonio; Jiménez-Espejo, Francisco; Toney, Jaime L.; Anderson, R. Scott; Kaufman, Darrell; Bright, Jordon; Sachse, Dirk

    2017-04-01

    Padul peatbog, located in southern Iberian Peninsula (western Mediterranean region) is a unique area for palaeoenvironmental studies due to its location, between arid and temperate climates. Previous studies showed that the Padul peatbog contains a continuous record of the last ca. 0.8-1 Ma, so it is an extraordinary site to identify glacial-interglacial phases as well as Heinrich and D-O events, linked to orbital- and suborbital-scale variations. In 2015, a new 42 m long core was taken from this area, providing an excellent sediment record probably for the last ca. 300,000 years. This study is focused on the paleoenvironmental and climatic reconstruction of the late Pleistocene and the early Holocene (ca. from 50,000 to 9,500 cal. yrs BP), using AMS 14C and AAR dating, high-resolution pollen analysis, lithology, continuous XRF-scanning, X-ray diffraction, magnetic susceptibility and organic geochemistry. These different proxies provide information not only about the regional environment change but also about local changes in the conditions of the Padul lake/peatbog due to variations in water temperature, pH or nutrients.

  6. A ~600 kyr duration Early Pleistocene record from the West Turkana (Kenya) HSPDP drill site: elemental XRF variability to reconstruct climate change in Turkana Boy's backyard

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    Stockhecke, M.; Beck, C. C.; Brown, E. T.; Cohen, A.; Deino, A. L.; Feibel, C. S.; Sier, M.

    2015-12-01

    Outcrops in the Kenyan and Ethiopian rift valleys document repeated occurrences of freshwater lakes and wooded landscapes over the past 4 million years at locations that are currently seasonally-dry savanna. Studies of the rich fossil records, in combination with outcropping lacustrine sequences, led to major breakthroughs in our knowledge of driving factors in human evolution. However, study of continuous drill core from ancient lake basins provides a basis for to unravel East African climate dynamics in an unseen fashion. The Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project (HSPDP), and the related Olorgesailie Drilling Project, recovered ~2 km of drill core since 2012. A major project goal is characterization of East African paleoclimate in order to evaluate its impact on hominin evolution. XRF core scanning data provide a means of evaluating records of past environmental conditions continuously and at high resolution. However, the HSPDP records contain complex lithologies reflecting repeated episodes of inundation and desiccation of the lake basins. Nevertheless, careful data evaluation based on detailed lithostratigraphy, which includes smear-slide microscopic analyses and X-radiographic images, allows disentanglement of complex signals and robust identification of continuous sequences for any cyclostratigraphic and statistical analysis. At the HSPDP Turkana Basin site a 175.6 m-long core the covers the Early Pleistocene time window during which hominids first expanded out of Africa and marine records document reorganization of tropical climate and the development of the strong Walker circulation. This drill site carries particular interest as it is located in only 2.5 km from the location of one of the most complete hominin skeletons ever recovered (Turkana Boy). Here we present a methodological approach to address the highly variable lithostratigraphy of the East African records to establish comprehensive and environmentally meaningful paleoclimate timeseries

  7. Snapshots of the Greenland ice sheet configuration in the Pliocene to early Pleistocene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Solgaard, Anne M.; Reeh, Niels; Japsen, Peter

    2011-01-01

    The geometry of the ice sheets during the Pliocene to early Pleistocene is not well constrained. Here we apply an ice-flow model in the study of the Greenland ice sheet (GIS) during three extreme intervals of this period constrained by geological observations and climate reconstructions. We study...... the extent of the GIS during the Mid-Pliocene Warmth (3.3-3.0 Ma), its advance across the continental shelf during the late Pliocene to early Pleistocene glaciations (3.0-2.4 Ma) as implied by offshore geological studies, and the transition from glacial to interglacial conditions around 2.4 Ma as deduced...... the variability of the GIS during the Pliocene to early Pleistocene and underline the importance of including independent estimates of the GIS in studies of climate during this period. We conclude that the GIS did not exist throughout the Pliocene to early Pleistocene, and that it melted during interglacials even...

  8. Contribution of changes in opal productivity and nutrient distribution in the coastal upwelling systems to Late Pliocene/Early Pleistocene climate cooling

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    J. Etourneau

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The global Late Pliocene/Early Pleistocene cooling (~3.0–2.0 million years ago – Ma concurred with extremely high diatom and biogenic opal production in most of the major coastal upwelling regions. This phenomenon was particularly pronounced in the Benguela upwelling system (BUS, off Namibia, where it is known as the Matuyama Diatom Maximum (MDM. Our study focuses on a new diatom silicon isotope (δ30Si record covering the MDM in the BUS. Unexpectedly, the variations in δ30Si signal follow biogenic opal content, whereby the highest δ30Si values correspond to the highest biogenic opal content. We interpret the higher δ30Si values during the MDM as a result of a stronger degree of silicate utilisation in the surface waters caused by high productivity of mat-forming diatom species. This was most likely promoted by weak upwelling intensity dominating the BUS during the Late Pliocene/Early Pleistocene cooling combined with a large silicate supply derived from a strong Southern Ocean nutrient leakage responding to the expansion of Antarctic ice cover and the resulting stratification of the polar ocean 3.0–2.7 Ma ago. A similar scenario is hypothesized for other major coastal upwelling systems (e.g. off California during this time interval, suggesting that the efficiency of the biological carbon pump was probably sufficiently enhanced in these regions during the MDM to have significantly increased the transport of atmospheric CO2 to the deep ocean. In addition, the coeval extension of the area of surface water stratification in both the Southern Ocean and the North Pacific, which decreased CO2 release to the atmosphere, led to further enhanced atmospheric CO2 drawn-down and thus contributed significantly to Late Pliocene/Early Pleistocene cooling.

  9. Transitional changes in microfossil assemblages in the Japan Sea from the Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene related to global climatic and local tectonic events

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    Itaki, Takuya

    2016-12-01

    Many micropaleontological studies based on data from on-land sections, oil wells, and deep-sea drilling cores have provided important information about environmental changes in the Japan Sea that are related to the global climate and the local tectonics of the Japanese Islands. Here, major changes in the microfossil assemblages during the Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene are reviewed. Late Pliocene (3.5-2.7 Ma) surface-water assemblages were characterized mainly by cold-temperate planktonic flora and fauna (nannofossils, diatoms, radiolarians, and planktonic foraminifera), suggesting that nutrient-rich North Pacific surface waters entered the Japan Sea via northern straits. The common occurrence of Pacific-type deep-water radiolarians during this period also suggests that deep water from the North Pacific entered the Japan Sea via the northern straits, indicating a sill depth >500 m. A weak warm-water influence is recognized along the Japanese coast, suggesting a small inflow of warm water via a southern strait. Nannofossil and sublittoral ostracod assemblages record an abrupt cooling event at 2.75 Ma that correlates with the onset of the Northern Hemisphere glaciation. Subsequently, cold intermediate- and deep-water assemblages of ostracods and radiolarians increased in abundance, suggesting active ventilation and the formation of the Japan Sea Proper Water, associated with a strengthened winter monsoon. Pacific-type deep-water radiolarians also disappeared around 2.75 Ma, which is attributed to the intermittent occurrence of deep anoxic environments and limited migration from the North Pacific, resulting from the near-closure or shallowing of the northern strait by a eustatic fall in sea level and tectonic uplift of northeastern Japan. A notable reduction in primary productivity from 2.3 to 1.3 Ma also suggests that the nutrient supply from the North Pacific was restricted by the near-closure of the northern strait. An increase in the abundance of subtropical

  10. Paleosoils and pedogenic calcretes formations in Fray Bentos (Oligocene - early miocene) Raigon (late pliocene and middle pleistocene) and Libertad (early - middle pleistocene)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tofalo, O.; Morras, H.; Sanchez-Bettucci, L.

    2012-01-01

    The Fray Bentos formation is composed by loessic deposits based on paleosoils and pedogenic calcretes (Oligocene - early miocene). In this deposits are tubular and lamellar formations which would have been formed in arid climates.The fluvial origen of Raigon Formation, (late pliocene and middle pleistocene) presents a paleosoil roof which is generated under a subhumid climate.The Libertad Formation during the glacial intervals consisted of loess deposits

  11. The British Lower Palaeolithic of the early Middle Pleistocene

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    Hosfield, Robert

    2011-06-01

    The archaeology of Britain during the early Middle Pleistocene (MIS 19-12) is represented by a number of key sites across eastern and southern England. These sites include Pakefield, Happisburgh 1, High Lodge, Warren Hill, Waverley Wood, Boxgrove, Kent's Cavern, and Westbury-sub-Mendip, alongside a 'background scatter' lithic record associated with the principal river systems (Bytham, pre-diversion Thames, and Solent) and raised beaches (Westbourne-Arundel). Hominin behaviour can be characterised in terms of: preferences for temperate or cool temperate climates and open/woodland mosaic habitats (indicated by mammalian fauna, mollusca, insects, and sediments); a biface-dominated material culture characterised by technological diversity, although with accompanying evidence for distinctive core and flake (Pakefield) and flake tool (High Lodge) assemblages; probable direct hunting-based subsistence strategies (with a focus upon large mammal fauna); and generally locally-focused spatial and landscape behaviours (principally indicated by raw material sources data), although with some evidence of dynamic, mobile and structured technological systems. The British data continues to support a 'modified short chronology' to the north of the Alps and the Pyrenees, with highly sporadic evidence for a hominin presence prior to 500-600 ka, although the ages of key assemblages are subject to ongoing debates regarding the chronology of the Bytham river terraces and the early Middle Pleistocene glaciations of East Anglia.

  12. The role of ice sheets in the pleistocene climate

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    Oerlemans, J.

    1991-01-01

    Northern hemisphere ice sheets have played an important role in the climatic evolution of the Pleistocene. The characteristic time-scale of icesheet growth has the same order-of-magnitude as that for the orbital insolation variations. The interaction with the solid earth, the importance of the

  13. Upper Middle Pleistocene climate and landscape development of Northern Germany

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    Urban, B.

    2009-04-01

    The Pleistocene sequence of the Schöningen lignite mine contains a number of interglacial and interstadial limnic and peat deposits, travertine tuff, soils, tills and fluvioglacial sediments as well as loess deposits. The complex Quaternary sequence contains six major cycles with evidence of four interglacials younger than the Elsterian glaciation and preceding the Holocene. The sequence begins with Late Elsterian glacial and three interstadial deposits formed in shallow basins. Cycle I is assigned to late parts of the Holsteinian interglacial. A strong cooling is recorded by a significant increase of Artemisia and grasses during the following Buschhaus A Stadial, which is considered to mark the onset of the Saalian Complex sensu lato (penultimate glacial-complex). The lacustrine sediments of Cycle II, Reinsdorf interglacial sequence (Urban, 1995), have been found to occur at archaeological sites Schöningen 12 and 13 (Thieme,1997). Recent investigations give evidence for at least 13 Local Pollen Assemblage Zones showing a five-fold division of the interglacial and a sequence of five climatic oscillations following the interglacial (Urban, 2006). From the relative high values for grasses and herbs in the inferred forested periods of the interglacial, a warm dry forest steppe climate can be deduced. The stratigraphic position of throwing spears (Thieme, 1997), can clearly be allocated to Reinsdorf Interstadial B (level II-4) characterized by an open pine-birch forest. Uppermost parts (level II-5) represent the transition into a periglacial environment indicating the definite end of cycle II. The Schöningen Interglacial (Cycle III) represents the youngest of the pre-Drenthe (Early Saalian Stadial) interglacials (Urban, 1995). In summary, it can be concluded that the Middle Pleistocene terrestrial pollen record of the Schöningen sequence represents tentative correlatives of MIS 7, 9 and 11. North of Leck (North Friesland, Schleswig-Holstein) sediments of the centre

  14. Implications of the avian fauna for paleoecology in the Early Pleistocene of the Iberian Peninsula.

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    Sánchez-Marco, A

    1999-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to reconstruct the landscape and climate during the formation of the Lower Pleistocene TD6 layer at Gran Dolina, Atapuerca. Habitat preferences and phenetic behavioural spectra of fossil birds are reconstructed using comparisons of fossil bird assemblages with modern avian communities. This method is based upon the phenology (seasonality and breeding status) of each species for both the fossil association and modern communities. The results indicate that more open country and wetter conditions prevailed during the early Pleistocene than were previously inferred. Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

  15. Mineralogical evidence of reduced East Asian summer monsoon rainfall on the Chinese loess plateau during the early Pleistocene interglacials

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    Meng, Xianqiang; Liu, Lianwen; Wang, Xingchen T.; Balsam, William; Chen, Jun; Ji, Junfeng

    2018-03-01

    The East Asian summer monsoon (EASM) is an important component of the global climate system. A better understanding of EASM rainfall variability in the past can help constrain climate models and better predict the response of EASM to ongoing global warming. The warm early Pleistocene, a potential analog of future climate, is an important period to study EASM dynamics. However, existing monsoon proxies for reconstruction of EASM rainfall during the early Pleistocene fail to disentangle monsoon rainfall changes from temperature variations, complicating the comparison of these monsoon records with climate models. Here, we present three 2.6 million-year-long EASM rainfall records from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) based on carbonate dissolution, a novel proxy for rainfall intensity. These records show that the interglacial rainfall on the CLP was lower during the early Pleistocene and then gradually increased with global cooling during the middle and late Pleistocene. These results are contrary to previous suggestions that a warmer climate leads to higher monsoon rainfall on tectonic timescales. We propose that the lower interglacial EASM rainfall during the early Pleistocene was caused by reduced sea surface temperature gradients across the equatorial Pacific, providing a testable hypothesis for climate models.

  16. Dietary traits of the late Early Pleistocene Bison menneri (Bovidae, Mammalia) from its type site Untermassfeld (Central Germany) and the problem of Pleistocene 'wood bison'

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    van Asperen, Eline N.; Kahlke, Ralf-Dietrich

    2017-12-01

    Over the course of the Early and early Middle Pleistocene, a climatic cooling trend led to the partial opening up of landscapes in the western Palaearctic. This led to a gradual replacement of browsers by grazers, whilst some herbivore species shifted their diet towards including more grass. Wear patterns of herbivore cheek teeth can inform our understanding of the timing and extent of this change and indicate levels of dietary plasticity. One of the indicator species of the faunal turnover is the first large-sized form of bison in the Palaearctic, Bison menneri. The dental mesowear of the palaeopopulation from the species' late Early Pleistocene type site of Untermassfeld in Central Germany and the Late Pleistocene B. priscus from Taubach, both from habitat mosaics of forested habitats and more open landscapes, have a mixed feeder profile similar to that of North American wood bison, which has a distinct preference for open habitats but occasionally consumes a high amount of browse as a fall-back food. In contrast, the grazer mesowear signature of early Middle Pleistocene B. schoetensacki voigtstedtensis from Voigtstedt indicates these animals likely did not regularly feed in the densely forested area around the site. The mesowear of B. schoetensacki from Süssenborn, in a more open environment, is similar to that of extant European bison. Both Pleistocene and extant bison are grazers to mixed feeders with relatively high tolerance of a suboptimal browsing diet. None of these species can be regarded as true 'wood bison'.

  17. Land-sea coupling of early Pleistocene glacial cycles in the southern North Sea exhibit dominant Northern Hemisphere forcing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donders, Timme; Van Helmond, Niels A.G.M.; Verreussel, Roel; Munsterman, Dirk; Veen, Johan Ten; Speijer, Robert P.; Weijers, Johan W.H.; Sangiorgi, Francesca; Peterse, Francien; Reichart, Gert-Jan; Sinninghe Damsté, Jaap S.; Lourens, Lucas; Kuhlmann, Gesa; Brinkhuis, Henk

    2018-01-01

    We assess the disputed phase relations between forcing and climatic response in the early Pleistocene with a spliced Gelasian (ĝ1/4 2.6-1.8ĝ€Ma) multi-proxy record from the southern North Sea basin. The cored sections couple climate evolution on both land and sea during the intensification of

  18. Pleistocene climatic changes drive diversification across a tropical savanna.

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    Potter, Sally; Xue, Alexander T; Bragg, Jason G; Rosauer, Dan F; Roycroft, Emily J; Moritz, Craig

    2018-01-01

    Spatial responses of species to past climate change depend on both intrinsic traits (climatic niche breadth, dispersal rates) and the scale of climatic fluctuations across the landscape. New capabilities in generating and analysing population genomic data, along with spatial modelling, have unleashed our capacity to infer how past climate changes have shaped populations, and by extension, complex communities. Combining these approaches, we uncover lineage diversity across four codistributed lizards from the Australian Monsoonal Tropics and explore how varying climatic tolerances interact with regional climate history to generate common vs. disparate responses to late Pleistocene change. We find more divergent spatial structuring and temporal demographic responses in the drier Kimberley region compared to the more mesic and consistently suitable Top End. We hypothesize that, in general, the effects of species' traits on sensitivity to climate fluctuation will be more evident in climatically marginal regions. If true, this points to the need in climatically marginal areas to craft more species-(or trait)-specific strategies for persistence under future climate change. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Early Pleistocene occurrence of Acheulian technology in North China

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    Li, Xingwen; Ao, Hong; Dekkers, Mark J.; Roberts, Andrew P.; Zhang, Peng; Lin, Shan; Huang, Weiwen; Hou, Yamei; Zhang, Weihua; An, Zhisheng

    2017-01-01

    Acheulian tools with their associated level of cognizance heralded a major threshold in the evolution of hominin technology, culture and behavior. Thus, unraveling occurrence ages of Acheulian technology across different regions worldwide constitutes a key aspect of understanding the archeology of early human evolution. Here we present a magneto-cyclochronology for the Acheulian assemblage from Sanmenxia Basin, Loess Plateau, North China. Our results place a sequence of stable normal and reversed paleomagnetic polarities within a regional lithostratigraphic context. The Acheulian assemblage is dated to be older than the Matuyama-Brunhes boundary at 0.78 Ma, and is found in strata that are probably equivalent to a weak paleosol subunit within loess layer L9 in the Chinese loess-paleosol sequence, which corresponds to marine isotope stage (MIS) 23, a relatively subdued interglacial period with age range of ∼0.89-0.92 Ma. This age of ∼0.9 Ma implies that Acheulian stone tools were unambiguously present in North China during the Early Pleistocene. It distinctly enlarges the geographic distribution of Acheulian technology and brings its occurrence in North China back into the Early Pleistocene, which is contemporaneous with its first emergence in Europe. Combined with other archeological records, the larger area over which Acheulian technology existed in East Asia during the terminal Early Pleistocene has important implications for understanding early human occupation of North China.

  20. Early pleistocene sediments at Great Blakenham, Suffolk, England

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    Gibbard, P. L.; Allen, P.; Field, M. H.; Hallam, D. F.

    Detailed investigation of a fine sediment sequence, the College Farm Silty Clay Member, that overlies the Creeting Sands (Early Pleistocene) in Suffolk, is presented. The sedimentary sequence is thought to represent a freshwater pool accumulation in a small coastal embayment. Palaeobotanical investigation of the sediment indicates that it accumulated during the late temperate substage of a temperate (interglacial) event. The occurrence of Tsuga pollen, associated with abundant remains of the water fern Azolla tegeliensis indicate that the deposits are of Early Pleistocene age and are correlated with a later part of the Antian-Bramertonian Stage. Correlation with Tiglian TO substage in The Netherlands' sequence is most likely. The sediments' normal palaeomagnetic polarity reinforces the biostratigraphical correlation.

  1. Early Pleistocene aquatic resource use in the Turkana Basin.

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    Archer, Will; Braun, David R; Harris, Jack W K; McCoy, Jack T; Richmond, Brian G

    2014-12-01

    Evidence for the acquisition of nutritionally dense food resources by early Pleistocene hominins has implications for both hominin biology and behavior. Aquatic fauna may have comprised a source of highly nutritious resources to hominins in the Turkana Basin at ∼1.95 Ma. Here we employ multiple datasets to examine the issue of aquatic resource use in the early Pleistocene. This study focuses on four components of aquatic faunal assemblages (1) taxonomic diversity, (2) skeletal element proportion, (3) bone fragmentation and (4) bone surface modification. These components are used to identify associations between early Pleistocene aquatic remains and hominin behavior at the site of FwJj20 in the Koobi Fora Fm. (Kenya). We focus on two dominant aquatic species: catfish and turtles. Further we suggest that data on aquatic resource availability as well as ethnographic examples of aquatic resource use complement our observations on the archaeological remains from FwJj20. Aquatic food items provided hominins with a valuable nutritional alternative to an exclusively terrestrial resource base. We argue that specific advantages afforded by an aquatic alternative to terrestrial resources include (1) a probable reduction in required investment of energy relative to economic return in the form of nutritionally dense food items, (2) a decrease in the technological costs of resource acquisition, and (3) a reduced level of inter-specific competition associated with carcass access and an associated reduction of predation risk relative to terrestrial sources of food. The combined evidence from FwJj20 suggests that aquatic resources may have played a substantial role in early Pleistocene diets and these resources may have been overlooked in previous interpretations of hominin behavior. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. New radiocarbon dates for terminal Pleistocene and early Holocene settlements in West Turkana, northern Kenya

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    Beyin, Amanuel; Prendergast, Mary E.; Grillo, Katherine M.; Wang, Hong

    2017-07-01

    The Turkana Basin in northern Kenya is located in an environmentally sensitive region along the eastern African Rift system. Lake Turkana's sensitivity to fluctuations in precipitation makes this an ideal place to study prehistoric human adaptations during key climatic transitions. Here we present eleven radiocarbon dates from two recently excavated sites in West Turkana, Kokito 01 and Kokito 02. The sites span the Pleistocene-Holocene transition, a time of fluctuating lake levels and novel cultural responses within the region. Several scenarios are laid out for the interpretation of site chronologies, and these are discussed with reference to the terminal Pleistocene and early Holocene chronological record for the region. Given the paucity of well-dated sites from this timespan in the Turkana Basin, the new radiocarbon dates are an important step toward establishing human settlement history and associated cultural developments in the region.

  3. Ancient DNA reveals that bowhead whale lineages survived Late Pleistocene climate change and habitat shifts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Foote, Andrew David; Kaschner, Kristin; Schultze, Sebastian E.

    2013-01-01

    that a true Arctic species, the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus), shifted its range and tracked its core suitable habitat northwards during the rapid climate change of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Late Pleistocene lineages survived into the Holocene and effective female population size increased...

  4. Pleistocene Park: the restoration of steppes as a tool to mitigate climate change through albedo effect

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    Zimov, N.; Loranty, M. M.; Edgar, C.; Kropp, H.; Zimov, S. A.

    2017-12-01

    In the late Pleistocene, the world largest ecosystem was the mammoth steppe. It stretched from the Iberian Peninsula to Canada and from the New Siberian Islands to China. It was a highly productive steppe ecosystem with numerous predators and herbivores that maintained the dominance of grasslands. With the end of the Pleistocene, the climate warmed and humans entered Siberia and the Americas. The introduction of humans as predators in these regions led to the extinction of most large animals, and the further degradation of the steppes. Mosses, shrubs and larch forest soon replaced grasses and herbs. Pleistocene Park is an experiment conducted in the far north of Siberia; its main goal is to revive the extinct steppe ecosystem in the Arctic. This would increase the richness of the northern ecosystems and, bioproductivity, and through a series of ecological mechanisms help to mitigate climate change. To conduct the experiment, was fenced 2000 hectares of land, and continue the ongoing process of introducing animals that either lived on this territory in the past or that can adapt to the modern northern environment. Through grazing, animals slowly transform the vegetation, replacing mosses, shrubs, and trees with grasses and herbs. Here we present the effects grazing animals have on the albedo of the landscape. Several years of year-round measurement of albedo and incoming and reflected radiation conducted in the grasslands in the park indicate substantially higher albedo compared with most modern ecosystems like larch forest and shrublands. Since grasses are lighter than forest, they reflect a higher portion of energy back to space. Results indicate the most dramatic difference in reflected solar radiation is in April and early May. Grasslands covered with snow reflect most of the sun's energy, while dark stems of forests and shrubs absorb that energy and promote warming. We argue that large-scale promotion of highly productive steppes in the Arctic will

  5. Early human symbolic behavior in the Late Pleistocene of Wallacea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brumm, Adam; Hakim, Budianto; Ramli, Muhammad; Sumantri, Iwan; Burhan, Basran; Saiful, Andi Muhammad; Siagian, Linda; Suryatman; Sardi, Ratno; Jusdi, Andi; Abdullah; Mubarak, Andi Pampang; Hasliana; Hasrianti; Oktaviana, Adhi Agus; Adhityatama, Shinatria; van den Bergh, Gerrit D.; Aubert, Maxime; Zhao, Jian-xin; Huntley, Jillian; Li, Bo; Roberts, Richard G.; Saptomo, E. Wahyu; Perston, Yinika; Grün, Rainer

    2017-01-01

    Wallacea, the zone of oceanic islands separating the continental regions of Southeast Asia and Australia, has yielded sparse evidence for the symbolic culture of early modern humans. Here we report evidence for symbolic activity 30,000–22,000 y ago at Leang Bulu Bettue, a cave and rock-shelter site on the Wallacean island of Sulawesi. We describe hitherto undocumented practices of personal ornamentation and portable art, alongside evidence for pigment processing and use in deposits that are the same age as dated rock art in the surrounding karst region. Previously, assemblages of multiple and diverse types of Pleistocene “symbolic” artifacts were entirely unknown from this region. The Leang Bulu Bettue assemblage provides insight into the complexity and diversification of modern human culture during a key period in the global dispersal of our species. It also shows that early inhabitants of Sulawesi fashioned ornaments from body parts of endemic animals, suggesting modern humans integrated exotic faunas and other novel resources into their symbolic world as they colonized the biogeographically unique regions southeast of continental Eurasia. PMID:28373568

  6. TERRESTRIAL EFFECTS OF NEARBY SUPERNOVAE IN THE EARLY PLEISTOCENE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, B. C.; Engler, E. E. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Washburn University, Topeka, KS 66621 (United States); Kachelrieß, M. [Institutt for fysikk, NTNU, Trondheim (Norway); Melott, A. L. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045 (United States); Overholt, A. C. [Department of Science and Mathematics, MidAmerica Nazarene University, Olathe, KS 66062 (United States); Semikoz, D. V., E-mail: brian.thomas@washburn.edu [APC, Universite Paris Diderot, CNRS/IN2P3, CEA/IRFU, Observatoire de Paris, Sorbonne Paris Cite, F-119 75205 Paris (France)

    2016-07-20

    Recent results have strongly confirmed that multiple supernovae happened at distances of ∼100 pc, consisting of two main events: one at 1.7–3.2 million years ago, and the other at 6.5–8.7 million years ago. These events are said to be responsible for excavating the Local Bubble in the interstellar medium and depositing {sup 60}Fe on Earth and the Moon. Other events are indicated by effects in the local cosmic ray (CR) spectrum. Given this updated and refined picture, we ask whether such supernovae are expected to have had substantial effects on the terrestrial atmosphere and biota. In a first look at the most probable cases, combining photon and CR effects, we find that a supernova at 100 pc can have only a small effect on terrestrial organisms from visible light and that chemical changes such as ozone depletion are weak. However, tropospheric ionization right down to the ground, due to the penetration of ≥TeV CRs, will increase by nearly an order of magnitude for thousands of years, and irradiation by muons on the ground and in the upper ocean will increase twentyfold, which will approximately triple the overall radiation load on terrestrial organisms. Such irradiation has been linked to possible changes in climate and increased cancer and mutation rates. This may be related to a minor mass extinction around the Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary, and further research on the effects is needed.

  7. Continuity versus discontinuity of the human settlement of Europe between the late Early Pleistocene and the early Middle Pleistocene. The mandibular evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martinón-Torres, María; Rosell, Jordi; Blasco, Ruth; Arsuaga, Juan Luís; Carbonell, Eudald

    2016-12-01

    One of the most interesting aspects of the settlement of Europe is the possible continuity or discontinuity of the populations living in this continent during the Early and Middle Pleistocene. In this paper we present an analysis of the mandibular fossil record from four important Pleistocene European sites, Gran Dolina-TD6-2 (Sierra de Atapuerca), Mauer, Arago, and Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos. We focus this study in the recognition of key derived mandibular features that may be useful to assess the relationship among the populations represented at these sites. In order to make an approach to the ecological scenario, we also present a short review and discussion of the archaeological and paleoenvironmental evidences at that time. Our results suggest that probably there was a demographic discontinuity between the late Early Pleistocene populations (MIS 21-MIS 19), and those dated to the MIS 15. Hybridization between residents and new settlers cannot be discarded. However, some features of the Gran Dolina-TD6 hominins point to some relationship between the population represented in this site (probably dated to the MIS 21) and the European Middle Pleistocene and early Late Pleistocene populations. A hypothetical scenario is presented in order to understand this apparent contradiction with the model of discontinuity.

  8. Holocene and latest Pleistocene climate and glacier fluctuations in Iceland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geirsdóttir, Áslaug; Miller, Gifford H.; Axford, Yarrow; Ólafsdóttir, Sædís

    2009-10-01

    Multiproxy climate records from Iceland document complex changes in terrestrial climate and glacier fluctuations through the Holocene, revealing some coherent patterns of change as well as significant spatial variability. Most studies on the Last Glacial Maximum and subsequent deglaciation reveal a dynamic Iceland Ice Sheet (IIS) that responded abruptly to changes in ocean currents and sea level. The IIS broke up catastrophically around 15 ka as the Polar Front migrated northward and sea level rose. Indications of regional advance or halt of the glaciers are seen in late Alleröd/early Younger Dryas time and again in PreBoreal time. Due to the apparent rise of relative sea level in Iceland during this time, most sites contain evidence for fluctuating, tidewater glacier termini occupying paleo fjords and bays. The time between the end of the Younger Dryas and the Preboreal was characterized by repeated jökulhlaups that eroded glacial deposits. By 10.3 ka, the main ice sheet was in rapid retreat across the highlands of Iceland. The Holocene thermal maximum (HTM) was reached after 8 ka with land temperatures estimated to be 3 °C higher than the 1961-1990 reference, and net precipitation similar to modern. Such temperatures imply largely ice-free conditions across Iceland in the early to mid-Holocene. Several marine and lacustrine sediment climate proxies record substantial summer temperature depression between 8.5 and 8 ka, but no moraines have been detected from that time. Termination of the HTM and onset of Neoglacial cooling took place sometime after 6 ka with increased glacier activity between 4.5 and 4.0 ka, intensifying between 3.0 and 2.5 ka. Although a distinct warming during the Medieval Warm Period is not dramatically apparent in Icelandic records, the interval from ca AD 0 to 1200 is commonly characterized by relative stability with slow rates of change. The literature most commonly describes Little Ice Age moraines (ca AD 1250-1900) as representing the

  9. Replicating the Ice-Volume Signal of the Early Pleistocene with a Complex Earth System Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabor, C. R.; Poulsen, C. J.; Pollard, D.

    2013-12-01

    greater summer insolation variability from the cycle of precession. We find obliquity enhances the climate sensitivity to direct insolation forcing through positive high-latitude surface feedbacks between vegetation, sea-ice, and mean-annual insolation while the seasonal dichotomy of precessional forcing leads to climate counterbalancing that dampens the annual ice-volume response. Longer cycle duration further amplifies the ice-volume response to obliquity. Our results help remedy the discrepancies between Milankovitch theory and the ice-volume proxy records. However, summer insolation intensity remains the most important factor for determining ice-volume rate-of-change in our experiments. Consequently, we still find a significant ice-volume response to precession, which is inconsistent with the Early Pleistocene records. The disconnect is likely attributable to climate phenomena not accounted for in the model or our choice of initial conditions, which are poorly constrained for the Early Pleistocene and ice-sheet modeling in general. Future work will examine the importance of initial climate conditions on ice-volume response.

  10. Mid-Pleistocene climate transition drives net mass loss from rapidly uplifting St. Elias mountains, Alaska

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Gulick, S.P.S.; Jaeger, J.M.; Mix, A.C.; Asahi, H.; Bahlburg, H.; Belanger, C.L.; Berbel, G.B.B.; Childress, L.; Cowan, E.; Drab, L.; Forwick, M.; Fukumura, A.; Ge, S.; Gupta, S.M.; Kioka, A.; Konno, S.; LeVay, L.J.; Marz, C.; Matsuzaki, K.M.; McClymont, E.L.; Moy, C.; Muller, J.; Nakamura, A.; Ojima, T.; Ribeiro, F.R.; Ridgway, K.D.; Romero, O.E.; Slagle, A.L.; Stoner, J.S.; St-Onge, G.; Suto, I.; Walczak, M.D.; Worthington, L.L.; Bailey, I.; Enkelmann, E.; Reece, R.; Swartz, J.M.

    the onset of quasi-periodic (~100-ky) glacial cycles in the mid-Pleistocene climate transition (1.2–0.7 Ma). Since then, erosion and transport of material out of the orogen has outpaced tectonic influx by 50–80%. Such a rapid net mass loss explains apparent...

  11. Reconstructing the climate states of the Late Pleistocene with the MIROC climate model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Wing-Le; Abe-Ouchi, Ayako; O'ishi, Ryouta; Takahashi, Kunio

    2014-05-01

    The Late Pleistocene was a period which lasted from the Eemian interglacial period to the start of the warm Holocene and was characterized mostly by widespread glacial ice. It was also a period which saw modern humans spread throughout the world and other species of the same genus, like the Neanderthals, become extinct. Various hypotheses have been put forward to explain the extinction of Neanderthals, about 30,000 years ago. Among these is one which involves changes in past climate and the inability of Neanderthals to adapt to such changes. The last traces of Neanderthals coincide with the end of Marine Isotope Stage 3 (MIS3) which was marked by large fluctuations in temperature and so-called Heinrich events, as suggested by geochemical records from ice cores. It is thought that melting sea ice or icebergs originating from the Laurentide ice sheet led to a large discharge of freshwater into the North Atlantic Ocean during the Heinrich events and severely weakened the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation, with important environmental ramifications across parts of Europe such as sharp decreases in temperature and reduction in forest cover. In order to assess the effects of past climate change on past hominin migration and on the extinction of certain species, it is first important to have a good understanding of the past climate itself. In this study, we have used three variants of MIROC (The Model for Interdisciplinary Research on Climate), a global climate model, for a time slice experiment within the Late Pleistocene: two mid-resolution models (an atmosphere model and a coupled atmosphere-ocean model) and a high-resolution atmosphere model. To obtain a fuller picture, we also look at a cool stadial state as obtained from a 'freshwater hosing' coupled-model experiment, designed to mimic the effects of freshwater discharge in the North Atlantic. We next use the sea surface temperature response from this experiment to drive the atmosphere models. We discuss

  12. Climate at the edge of human dispersal in the European Middle Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horne, David

    2014-05-01

    Pleistocene palaeoclimatic reconstructions based on fossils from sites containing archaeological evidence of human occupation can answer key questions about the climatic context of early human dispersal in Europe. Biological proxies including foraminifera, ostracods, diatoms, chironomid larvae, molluscs and pollen are widely used to estimate palaeoclimatic parameters, typically palaeotemperatures, using indicator species, Mutual Climatic Range (MCR), Modern Analogue Technique (MAT) and transfer function approaches. Any single proxy method will yield plausible results, but there is a need for multi-proxy testing; matching or overlapping results inspire confidence, whereas if independent proxies yield results that do not match or even overlap, one or more must be wrong. The Multi-Proxy Consensus (MPC) approach not only compares two or more proxy results in order to check for agreement, but also offers potential for more refined results to be obtained from the range of mutual agreement between two or more overlapping palaeotemperature ranges. Studies of MIS9 (late Middle Pleistocene) deposits in the Thames-Medway river system in SE England (some of which contain stone implements representing human occupation) have yielded palaeotemperature estimates based on ostracods, beetles, fish, herpetiles, pollen and plant macrofossils. The MPC approach demonstrates the consistency of the results and defines a more continental climate than today (mean July air temperatures similar or 1 degree warmer, mean January air temperatures at least 2 degrees colder). Two River Thames MIS11 sites (Ebbsfleet and Swanscombe) have yielded MPC results indicating summers up to 1.5 degrees warmer and winters at least 5 degrees colder than today. British early Middle Pleistocene sites record the earliest human presence in Europe North of the Alps. At Boxgrove (MIS13), well-known for its rich record of human activity (stone tools and butchered bones), combined ostracod and herpetile MCR results

  13. Lifestyle and Ice: The Relationship between Ecological Specialization and Response to Pleistocene Climate Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kašparová, Eva; Van de Putte, Anton P; Marshall, Craig; Janko, Karel

    2015-01-01

    Major climatic changes in the Pleistocene had significant effects on marine organisms and the environments in which they lived. The presence of divergent patterns of demographic history even among phylogenetically closely-related species sharing climatic changes raises questions as to the respective influence of species-specific traits on population structure. In this work we tested whether the lifestyle of Antarctic notothenioid benthic and pelagic fish species from the Southern Ocean influenced the concerted population response to Pleistocene climatic fluctuations. This was done by a comparative analysis of sequence variation at the cyt b and S7 loci in nine newly sequenced and four re-analysed species. We found that all species underwent more or less intensive changes in population size but we also found consistent differences between demographic histories of pelagic and benthic species. Contemporary pelagic populations are significantly more genetically diverse and bear traces of older demographic expansions than less diverse benthic species that show evidence of more recent population expansions. Our findings suggest that the lifestyles of different species have strong influences on their responses to the same environmental events. Our data, in conjunction with previous studies showing a constant diversification tempo of these species during the Pleistocene, support the hypothesis that Pleistocene glaciations had a smaller effect on pelagic species than on benthic species whose survival may have relied upon ephemeral refugia in shallow shelf waters. These findings suggest that the interaction between lifestyle and environmental changes should be considered in genetic analyses.

  14. Hominin teeth from the early Late Pleistocene site of Xujiayao, Northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Song; Martinón-Torres, María; Bermúdez de Castro, Jose María; Wu, Xiujie; Liu, Wu

    2015-02-01

    It is generally accepted that from the late Middle to the early Late Pleistocene (∼340-90 ka BP), Neanderthals were occupying Europe and Western Asia, whereas anatomically modern humans were present in the African continent. In contrast, the paucity of hominin fossil evidence from East Asia from this period impedes a complete evolutionary picture of the genus Homo, as well as assessment of the possible contribution of or interaction with Asian hominins in the evolution of Homo sapiens and Homo neanderthalensis. Here we present a comparative study of a hominin dental sample recovered from the Xujiayao site, in Northern China, attributed to the early Late Pleistocene (MIS 5 to 4). Our dental study reveals a mosaic of primitive and derived dental features for the Xujiayao hominins that can be summarized as follows: i) they are different from archaic and recent modern humans, ii) they present some features that are common but not exclusive to the Neanderthal lineage, and iii) they retain some primitive conformations classically found in East Asian Early and Middle Pleistocene hominins despite their young geological age. Thus, our study evinces the existence in China of a population of unclear taxonomic status with regard to other contemporary populations such as H. sapiens and H. neanderthalensis. The morphological and metric studies of the Xujiayao teeth expand the variability known for early Late Pleistocene hominin fossils and suggest the possibility that a primitive hominin lineage may have survived late into the Late Pleistocene in China. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. A NEW EARLY PLEISTOCENE BIRD ASSOCIATION FROM PIETRAFITTA (PERUGIA, CENTRAL ITALY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GILDA ZUCCHETTA

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available We here present che preliminary results of the analysis of the fossil bird assemblages found in the lignite deposits of the Pietrafitta Mine (Perugia, Central Italy. A rich vertebrate association, mainly mammals, has been retrieved in Pietrafitta, which is the richest local fauna of the Farneta Faunal Unit (late Villafranchian, early Pleistocene. Avian remains of Podicipedidae, Ardeidae, Phalacrocoracidae, Anatidae, Phasianidae and Rallidae have been identified, for most of which Pietrafitta represents the earliest occurrence in Italy. The Pietrafitta fossil bird association is the first Italian bird assemblage of the Early Pleistocene and seems to be one of the most important ones for the early Pleistocene in Europe, especially because it contains mainly aquatic birds, often rare in many other European deposits. 

  16. The consequences of pleistocene climate change on lowland neotropical vegetation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    De Oliveira, P.E.; Colinvaux, P.A. (Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama City (Panama))

    1994-06-01

    Palynological reconstructions indicate that lowland tropical America was subject to intense cooling during the last ice-age. The descent of presently montane taxa into the lowlands of Amazonia and Minas Gerais indicate temperature depressions ranging from 5[degrees]C to 9[degrees]C cooler-than-present. The strengthened incursion of southerly airmasses caused a reassortment of vegetation throughout Amazonia. Presently allopatric species are found to have been sympatric as novel forest assemblages and formed and dissolved. Modest drying, perhaps a 20% reduction in precipitation, accounts for all the records that show a Pleistocene expansion of savanna. No evidence is found to support the fragmentation of Amazonian forests during glacial times, and the hypothesis of forest refuges as an explanation of tropical speciation is rejected on empirical grounds.

  17. Modeling the imprint of Milankovitch cycles on early Pleistocene ice volume

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roychowdhury, R.; DeConto, R.; Pollard, D.

    2017-12-01

    Global climate during Quaternary and Late Pliocene (present-3.1 Ma) is characterized by alternating glacial and interglacial conditions. Several proposed theories associate these cycles with variations in the Earth's orbital configuration. In this study, we attempt to address the anomalously strong obliquity forcing in the Late Pliocene/Early Pleistocene ice volume records (41 kyr world), which stands in sharp contrast to the primary cyclicity of insolation, which is at precessional periods (23 kyr). Model results from GCM simulations show that at low eccentricities (e0.015), precessional response is important, and the insolation metrics vary out-of-phase between the two hemispheres. Using simulations from a GCM-driven ice sheet model, we simulate time continuous ice volume changes from Northern and Southern Hemispheres. Under eccentricities lower than 0.015, ice sheets in both hemispheres respond only to obliquity cycle, and grow and melt together (in-phase). If the ice sheet is simulated with eccentricity higher than 0.015, both hemispheres become more sensitive to precessional variation, and vary out-of-phase with each other, which is consistent with proxy observations from the late Pleistocene glaciations. We use the simulated ice volumes from 2.0 to 1.0 ma to empirically calculate global benthic δ18O variations based on the assumption that relationships between collapse and growth of ice-sheets and sea level is linear and symmetric and that the isotopic signature of the individual ice-sheets has not changed with time. Our modeled global benthic δ18O values are broadly consistent with the paleoclimate proxy records such as the LR04 stack.

  18. Small mammal diversity loss in response to late-Pleistocene climatic change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blois, Jessica L; McGuire, Jenny L; Hadly, Elizabeth A

    2010-06-10

    Communities have been shaped in numerous ways by past climatic change; this process continues today. At the end of the Pleistocene epoch about 11,700 years ago, North American communities were substantially altered by the interplay of two events. The climate shifted from the cold, arid Last Glacial Maximum to the warm, mesic Holocene interglacial, causing many mammal species to shift their geographic distributions substantially. Populations were further stressed as humans arrived on the continent. The resulting megafaunal extinction event, in which 70 of the roughly 220 largest mammals in North America (32%) became extinct, has received much attention. However, responses of small mammals to events at the end of the Pleistocene have been much less studied, despite the sensitivity of these animals to current and future environmental change. Here we examine community changes in small mammals in northern California during the last 'natural' global warming event at the Pleistocene-Holocene transition and show that even though no small mammals in the local community became extinct, species losses and gains, combined with changes in abundance, caused declines in both the evenness and richness of communities. Modern mammalian communities are thus depauperate not only as a result of megafaunal extinctions at the end of the Pleistocene but also because of diversity loss among small mammals. Our results suggest that across future landscapes there will be some unanticipated effects of global change on diversity: restructuring of small mammal communities, significant loss of richness, and perhaps the rising dominance of native 'weedy' species.

  19. The Pliocene initiation and Early Pleistocene volcanic disruption of the palaeo-Gediz fluvial system, Western Turkey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maddy, D.; Demir, T.; Bridgland, D.R.; Veldkamp, A.; Stemerdink, C.; Schriek, van der T.; Schreve, D.

    2007-01-01

    In this paper, we report our latest observations concerning a Pliocene and Early Pleistocene record from Western Turkey. The sedimentary sequence described comprises the fluvial deposits of an Early Pleistocene palaeo-Gediz river system and its tributaries prior to the onset of volcanism around Kula

  20. Plio-Pleistocene climate change and geographic heterogeneity in plant diversity-environment relationships

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svenning, J.-C.; Normand, Signe; Skov, Flemming

    2009-01-01

    Plio-Pleistocene climate change may have induced geographic heterogeneity in plant species richness-environment relationships in Europe due to greater in situ species survival and speciation rates in southern Europe. We formulate distinct hypotheses on how Plio-Pleistocene climate change may have...... affected richness-topographic heterogeneity and richness-water-energy availability relationships, causing steeper relationships in southern Europe. We investigated these hypotheses using data from Atlas Florae Europaeae on the distribution of 3069 species and geographically weighted regression (GWR). Our...... analyses showed that plant species richness generally increased with topographic heterogeneity (ln-transformed altitudinal range) and actual evapotranspiration (AET). We also found evidence for strong geographic heterogeneity in the species richness-environment relationship, with a greater increase...

  1. Plio-Pleistocene climate sensitivity evaluated using high-resolution CO2 records

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Botí, M. A.; Foster, G. L.; Chalk, T. B.; Rohling, E. J.; Sexton, P. F.; Lunt, D. J.; Pancost, R. D.; Badger, M. P. S.; Schmidt, D. N.

    2015-02-01

    Theory and climate modelling suggest that the sensitivity of Earth's climate to changes in radiative forcing could depend on the background climate. However, palaeoclimate data have thus far been insufficient to provide a conclusive test of this prediction. Here we present atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) reconstructions based on multi-site boron-isotope records from the late Pliocene epoch (3.3 to 2.3 million years ago). We find that Earth's climate sensitivity to CO2-based radiative forcing (Earth system sensitivity) was half as strong during the warm Pliocene as during the cold late Pleistocene epoch (0.8 to 0.01 million years ago). We attribute this difference to the radiative impacts of continental ice-volume changes (the ice-albedo feedback) during the late Pleistocene, because equilibrium climate sensitivity is identical for the two intervals when we account for such impacts using sea-level reconstructions. We conclude that, on a global scale, no unexpected climate feedbacks operated during the warm Pliocene, and that predictions of equilibrium climate sensitivity (excluding long-term ice-albedo feedbacks) for our Pliocene-like future (with CO2 levels up to maximum Pliocene levels of 450 parts per million) are well described by the currently accepted range of an increase of 1.5 K to 4.5 K per doubling of CO2.

  2. Plio-Pleistocene climate sensitivity evaluated using high-resolution CO2 records.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Botí, M A; Foster, G L; Chalk, T B; Rohling, E J; Sexton, P F; Lunt, D J; Pancost, R D; Badger, M P S; Schmidt, D N

    2015-02-05

    Theory and climate modelling suggest that the sensitivity of Earth's climate to changes in radiative forcing could depend on the background climate. However, palaeoclimate data have thus far been insufficient to provide a conclusive test of this prediction. Here we present atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) reconstructions based on multi-site boron-isotope records from the late Pliocene epoch (3.3 to 2.3 million years ago). We find that Earth's climate sensitivity to CO2-based radiative forcing (Earth system sensitivity) was half as strong during the warm Pliocene as during the cold late Pleistocene epoch (0.8 to 0.01 million years ago). We attribute this difference to the radiative impacts of continental ice-volume changes (the ice-albedo feedback) during the late Pleistocene, because equilibrium climate sensitivity is identical for the two intervals when we account for such impacts using sea-level reconstructions. We conclude that, on a global scale, no unexpected climate feedbacks operated during the warm Pliocene, and that predictions of equilibrium climate sensitivity (excluding long-term ice-albedo feedbacks) for our Pliocene-like future (with CO2 levels up to maximum Pliocene levels of 450 parts per million) are well described by the currently accepted range of an increase of 1.5 K to 4.5 K per doubling of CO2.

  3. Spatial prediction of the variability of early pleistocene subsurface sediments in the Netherlands part 2: geochemistry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, D.J.; Weijers, J.P.; Dijkshoorn, L.; Veldkamp, A.

    2000-01-01

    We started a geochemical mapping campaign in the Early Pleistocene fluviatile Kedichem Formation in the Netherlands in order to meet the demand for more information about subsurface sediment compositions. Geochemical data were collected during a sampling campaign, and about 600 samples from the

  4. Spatial prediction of the variability of Early Pleistocene subsurface sediments in the Netherlands - Part 2 : Geochemistry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, D.J.; Weijers, J.P.; Dijkshoorn, L.; Veldkamp, A.

    2000-01-01

    We started a geochemical mapping campaign in the Early Pleistocene fluviatile Kedichem Formation in the Netherlands in order to meet the demand for more information about subsurface sediment compositions. Geochemical data were collected during a sampling campaign, and about 600 samples from the

  5. Land-sea coupling of early Pleistocene glacial cycles in the southern North Sea exhibit dominant Northern Hemisphere forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donders, Timme H.; van Helmond, Niels A. G. M.; Verreussel, Roel; Munsterman, Dirk; ten Veen, Johan; Speijer, Robert P.; Weijers, Johan W. H.; Sangiorgi, Francesca; Peterse, Francien; Reichart, Gert-Jan; Sinninghe Damsté, Jaap S.; Lourens, Lucas; Kuhlmann, Gesa; Brinkhuis, Henk

    2018-03-01

    We assess the disputed phase relations between forcing and climatic response in the early Pleistocene with a spliced Gelasian (˜ 2.6-1.8 Ma) multi-proxy record from the southern North Sea basin. The cored sections couple climate evolution on both land and sea during the intensification of Northern Hemisphere glaciation (NHG) in NW Europe, providing the first well-constrained stratigraphic sequence of the classic terrestrial Praetiglian stage. Terrestrial signals were derived from the Eridanos paleoriver, a major fluvial system that contributed a large amount of freshwater to the northeast Atlantic. Due to its latitudinal position, the Eridanos catchment was likely affected by early Pleistocene NHG, leading to intermittent shutdown and reactivation of river flow and sediment transport. Here we apply organic geochemistry, palynology, carbonate isotope geochemistry, and seismostratigraphy to document both vegetation changes in the Eridanos catchment and regional surface water conditions and relate them to early Pleistocene glacial-interglacial cycles and relative sea level changes. Paleomagnetic and palynological data provide a solid integrated timeframe that ties the obliquity cycles, expressed in the borehole geophysical logs, to Marine Isotope Stages (MIS) 103 to 92, independently confirmed by a local benthic oxygen isotope record. Marine and terrestrial palynological and organic geochemical records provide high-resolution reconstructions of relative terrestrial and sea surface temperature (TT and SST), vegetation, relative sea level, and coastal influence.During the prominent cold stages MIS 98 and 96, as well as 94, the record indicates increased non-arboreal vegetation, low SST and TT, and low relative sea level. During the warm stages MIS 99, 97, and 95 we infer increased stratification of the water column together with a higher percentage of arboreal vegetation, high SST, and relative sea level maxima. The early Pleistocene distinct warm-cold alterations are

  6. Land–sea coupling of early Pleistocene glacial cycles in the southern North Sea exhibit dominant Northern Hemisphere forcing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. H. Donders

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available We assess the disputed phase relations between forcing and climatic response in the early Pleistocene with a spliced Gelasian (∼ 2.6–1.8 Ma multi-proxy record from the southern North Sea basin. The cored sections couple climate evolution on both land and sea during the intensification of Northern Hemisphere glaciation (NHG in NW Europe, providing the first well-constrained stratigraphic sequence of the classic terrestrial Praetiglian stage. Terrestrial signals were derived from the Eridanos paleoriver, a major fluvial system that contributed a large amount of freshwater to the northeast Atlantic. Due to its latitudinal position, the Eridanos catchment was likely affected by early Pleistocene NHG, leading to intermittent shutdown and reactivation of river flow and sediment transport. Here we apply organic geochemistry, palynology, carbonate isotope geochemistry, and seismostratigraphy to document both vegetation changes in the Eridanos catchment and regional surface water conditions and relate them to early Pleistocene glacial–interglacial cycles and relative sea level changes. Paleomagnetic and palynological data provide a solid integrated timeframe that ties the obliquity cycles, expressed in the borehole geophysical logs, to Marine Isotope Stages (MIS 103 to 92, independently confirmed by a local benthic oxygen isotope record. Marine and terrestrial palynological and organic geochemical records provide high-resolution reconstructions of relative terrestrial and sea surface temperature (TT and SST, vegetation, relative sea level, and coastal influence.During the prominent cold stages MIS 98 and 96, as well as 94, the record indicates increased non-arboreal vegetation, low SST and TT, and low relative sea level. During the warm stages MIS 99, 97, and 95 we infer increased stratification of the water column together with a higher percentage of arboreal vegetation, high SST, and relative sea level maxima. The early Pleistocene distinct

  7. Pleistocene climate, phylogeny, and climate envelope models: an integrative approach to better understand species' response to climate change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Michelle Lawing

    Full Text Available Mean annual temperature reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change increases at least 1.1°C to 6.4°C over the next 90 years. In context, a change in climate of 6°C is approximately the difference between the mean annual temperature of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM and our current warm interglacial. Species have been responding to changing climate throughout Earth's history and their previous biological responses can inform our expectations for future climate change. Here we synthesize geological evidence in the form of stable oxygen isotopes, general circulation paleoclimate models, species' evolutionary relatedness, and species' geographic distributions. We use the stable oxygen isotope record to develop a series of temporally high-resolution paleoclimate reconstructions spanning the Middle Pleistocene to Recent, which we use to map ancestral climatic envelope reconstructions for North American rattlesnakes. A simple linear interpolation between current climate and a general circulation paleoclimate model of the LGM using stable oxygen isotope ratios provides good estimates of paleoclimate at other time periods. We use geologically informed rates of change derived from these reconstructions to predict magnitudes and rates of change in species' suitable habitat over the next century. Our approach to modeling the past suitable habitat of species is general and can be adopted by others. We use multiple lines of evidence of past climate (isotopes and climate models, phylogenetic topology (to correct the models for long-term changes in the suitable habitat of a species, and the fossil record, however sparse, to cross check the models. Our models indicate the annual rate of displacement in a clade of rattlesnakes over the next century will be 2 to 3 orders of magnitude greater (430-2,420 m/yr than it has been on average for the past 320 ky (2.3 m/yr.

  8. Predicting Pleistocene climate from vegetation in North America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Loehle

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Climates at the Last Glacial Maximum have been inferred from fossil pollen assemblages, but these inferred climates are colder for eastern North America than those produced by climate simulations. It has been suggested that low CO2 levels could account for this discrepancy. In this study biogeographic evidence is used to test the CO2 effect model. The recolonization of glaciated zones in eastern North America following the last ice age produced distinct biogeographic patterns. It has been assumed that a wide zone south of the ice was tundra or boreal parkland (Boreal-Parkland Zone or BPZ, which would have been recolonized from southern refugia as the ice melted, but the patterns in this zone differ from those in the glaciated zone, which creates a major biogeographic anomaly. In the glacial zone, there are few endemics but in the BPZ there are many across multiple taxa. In the glacial zone, there are the expected gradients of genetic diversity with distance from the ice-free zone, but no evidence of this is found in the BPZ. Many races and related species exist in the BPZ which would have merged or hybridized if confined to the same refugia. Evidence for distinct southern refugia for most temperate species is lacking. Extinctions of temperate flora were rare. The interpretation of spruce as a boreal climate indicator may be mistaken over much of the region if the spruce was actually an extinct temperate species. All of these anomalies call into question the concept that climates in the zone south of the ice were extremely cold or that temperate species had to migrate far to the south. An alternate hypothesis is that low CO2 levels gave an advantage to pine and spruce, which are the dominant trees in the BPZ, and to herbaceous species over trees, which also fits the observed pattern. Thus climate reconstruction from pollen data is probably biased and needs to incorporate CO2 effects. Most temperate species could have survived across their current

  9. Response of the Amazon rainforest to late Pleistocene climate variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Häggi, Christoph; Chiessi, Cristiano M.; Merkel, Ute; Mulitza, Stefan; Prange, Matthias; Schulz, Michael; Schefuß, Enno

    2017-12-01

    Variations in Amazonian hydrology and forest cover have major consequences for the global carbon and hydrological cycles as well as for biodiversity. Yet, the climate and vegetation history of the lowland Amazon basin and its effect on biogeography remain debated due to the scarcity of suitable high-resolution paleoclimate records. Here, we use the isotopic composition (δD and δ13C) of plant-waxes from a high-resolution marine sediment core collected offshore the Amazon River to reconstruct the climate and vegetation history of the integrated lowland Amazon basin for the period from 50,000 to 12,800 yr before present. Our results show that δD values from the Last Glacial Maximum were more enriched than those from Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3 and the present-day. We interpret this trend to reflect long-term changes in precipitation and atmospheric circulation, with overall drier conditions during the Last Glacial Maximum. Our results thus suggest a dominant glacial forcing of the climate in lowland Amazonia. In addition to previously suggested thermodynamic mechanisms of precipitation change, which are directly related to temperature, we conclude that changes in atmospheric circulation are crucial to explain the temporal evolution of Amazonian rainfall variations, as demonstrated in climate model experiments. Our vegetation reconstruction based on δ13C values shows that the Amazon rainforest was affected by intrusions of savannah or more open vegetation types in its northern sector during Heinrich Stadials, while it was resilient to glacial drying. This suggests that biogeographic patterns in tropical South America were affected by Heinrich Stadials in addition to glacial-interglacial climate variability.

  10. Quantifying the astronomical contribution to Pleistocene climate change: A non-linear, statistical approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crucifix, Michel; Wilkinson, Richard; Carson, Jake; Preston, Simon; Alemeida, Carlos; Rougier, Jonathan

    2013-04-01

    The existence of an action of astronomical forcing on the Pleistocene climate is almost undisputed. However, quantifying this action is not straightforward. In particular, the phenomenon of deglaciation is generally interpreted as a manifestation of instability, which is typical of non-linear systems. As a consequence, explaining the Pleistocene climate record as the addition of an astronomical contribution and noise-as often done using harmonic analysis tools-is potentially deceptive. Rather, we advocate a methodology in which non-linear stochastic dynamical systems are calibrated on the Pleistocene climate record. The exercise, though, requires careful statistical reasoning and state-of-the-art techniques. In fact, the problem has been judged to be mathematically 'intractable and unsolved' and some pragmatism is justified. In order to illustrate the methodology we consider one dynamical system that potentially captures four dynamical features of the Pleistocene climate : the existence of a saddle-node bifurcation in at least one of its slow components, a time-scale separation between a slow and a fast component, the action of astronomical forcing, and the existence a stochastic contribution to the system dynamics. This model is obviously not the only possible representation of Pleistocene dynamics, but it encapsulates well enough both our theoretical and empirical knowledge into a very simple form to constitute a valid starting point. The purpose of this poster is to outline the practical challenges in calibrating such a model on paleoclimate observations. Just as in time series analysis, there is no one single and universal test or criteria that would demonstrate the validity of an approach. Several methods exist to calibrate the model and judgement develops by the confrontation of the results of the different methods. In particular, we consider here the Kalman filter variants, the Particle Monte-Carlo Markov Chain, and two other variants of Sequential Monte

  11. The medial pterygoid tubercle in the Atapuerca Early and Middle Pleistocene mandibles: evolutionary implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, José-María; Quam, Rolf; Martinón-Torres, María; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Arsuaga, Juan Luís; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-01-01

    Numerous studies have attempted to identify the presence of uniquely derived (autoapomorphic) Neandertal features. Here, we deal with the medial pterygoid tubercle (MTP), which is usually present on the internal face of the ascending ramus of Neandertal specimens. Our study stems from the identification of a hypertrophied tubercle in ATD6-96, an Early Pleistocene mandible recovered from the TD6 level of the Atapuerca-Gran Dolina site and attributed to Homo antecessor. Our review of the literature and study of numerous original fossil specimens and high quality replicas confirm that the MTP occurs at a high frequency in Neandertals (ca. 89%) and is also present in over half (ca. 55%) of the Middle Pleistocene Sima de los Huesos (SH) hominins. In contrast, it is generally absent or minimally developed in other extinct hominins, but can be found in variable frequencies (Pleistocene and recent H. sapiens samples. The presence of this feature in ATD6-96 joins other traits shared by H. antecessor, the SH hominins and Neandertals. Since the TD6 hominins have been attributed either to MIS 21 or to MIS 25, it seems that a suite of assumed derived Neandertal features appeared in the Early Pleistocene, and they should be interpreted as synapomorphies shared among different taxa. We suggest that H. antecessor, the SH hominins and Neandertals shared a common ancestor in which these features appeared during the Early Pleistocene. The presence of the MTP in taxa other than H. neanderthalensis precludes this feature from being a Neandertal autapomorphy. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Plio-Pleistocene imprint of natural climate cycles in marine sediments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lebreiro, S. M.

    2013-06-01

    The response of Earth to natural climate cyclicity is written in marine sediments. The Earth is a complex system, as is climate change determined by various modes, frequency of cycles, forcings, boundary conditions, thresholds, and tipping elements. Oceans act as climate change buffers, and marine sediments provide archives of climate conditions in the Earths history. To read climate records they must be well-dated, well-calibrated and analysed at high-resolution. Reconstructions of past climates are based on climate variables such as atmospheric composition, temperature, salinity, ocean productivity and wind, the nature and quality which are of the utmost importance. Once the palaeoclimate and palaeoceanographic proxy-variables of past events are well documented, the best results of modelling and validation, and future predictions can be obtained from climate models. Neither the mechanisms for abrupt climate changes at orbital, millennial and multi-decadal time scales nor the origin, rhythms and stability of cyclicity are as yet fully understood. Possible sources of cyclicity are either natural in the form of internal ocean-atmosphere-land interactions or external radioactive forcing such as solar irradiance and volcanic activity, or else anthropogenic. Coupling with stochastic resonance is also very probable. I provide here, an overview of the cyclicity affecting the Earth on various time scales focussing upon the Plio-Pleistocene and Holocene epochs, together with a compilation of some of the key questions under debate, and a number of representative works that illustrate cyclicity in marine sediments. (Author)

  13. Recalibrating Equus evolution using the genome sequence of an early Middle Pleistocene horse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orlando, Ludovic; Ginolhac, Aurélien; Zhang, Guojie; Froese, Duane; Albrechtsen, Anders; Stiller, Mathias; Schubert, Mikkel; Cappellini, Enrico; Petersen, Bent; Moltke, Ida; Johnson, Philip L F; Fumagalli, Matteo; Vilstrup, Julia T; Raghavan, Maanasa; Korneliussen, Thorfinn; Malaspinas, Anna-Sapfo; Vogt, Josef; Szklarczyk, Damian; Kelstrup, Christian D; Vinther, Jakob; Dolocan, Andrei; Stenderup, Jesper; Velazquez, Amhed M V; Cahill, James; Rasmussen, Morten; Wang, Xiaoli; Min, Jiumeng; Zazula, Grant D; Seguin-Orlando, Andaine; Mortensen, Cecilie; Magnussen, Kim; Thompson, John F; Weinstock, Jacobo; Gregersen, Kristian; Røed, Knut H; Eisenmann, Véra; Rubin, Carl J; Miller, Donald C; Antczak, Douglas F; Bertelsen, Mads F; Brunak, Søren; Al-Rasheid, Khaled A S; Ryder, Oliver; Andersson, Leif; Mundy, John; Krogh, Anders; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Kjær, Kurt; Sicheritz-Ponten, Thomas; Jensen, Lars Juhl; Olsen, Jesper V; Hofreiter, Michael; Nielsen, Rasmus; Shapiro, Beth; Wang, Jun; Willerslev, Eske

    2013-07-04

    The rich fossil record of equids has made them a model for evolutionary processes. Here we present a 1.12-times coverage draft genome from a horse bone recovered from permafrost dated to approximately 560-780 thousand years before present (kyr BP). Our data represent the oldest full genome sequence determined so far by almost an order of magnitude. For comparison, we sequenced the genome of a Late Pleistocene horse (43 kyr BP), and modern genomes of five domestic horse breeds (Equus ferus caballus), a Przewalski's horse (E. f. przewalskii) and a donkey (E. asinus). Our analyses suggest that the Equus lineage giving rise to all contemporary horses, zebras and donkeys originated 4.0-4.5 million years before present (Myr BP), twice the conventionally accepted time to the most recent common ancestor of the genus Equus. We also find that horse population size fluctuated multiple times over the past 2 Myr, particularly during periods of severe climatic changes. We estimate that the Przewalski's and domestic horse populations diverged 38-72 kyr BP, and find no evidence of recent admixture between the domestic horse breeds and the Przewalski's horse investigated. This supports the contention that Przewalski's horses represent the last surviving wild horse population. We find similar levels of genetic variation among Przewalski's and domestic populations, indicating that the former are genetically viable and worthy of conservation efforts. We also find evidence for continuous selection on the immune system and olfaction throughout horse evolution. Finally, we identify 29 genomic regions among horse breeds that deviate from neutrality and show low levels of genetic variation compared to the Przewalski's horse. Such regions could correspond to loci selected early during domestication.

  14. Phylogeographic Structure of a Tethyan Relict Capparis spinosa (Capparaceae) Traces Pleistocene Geologic and Climatic Changes in the Western Himalayas, Tianshan Mountains, and Adjacent Desert Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qian; Zhang, Ming-Li; Yin, Lin-Ke

    2016-01-01

    Complex geological movements more or less affected or changed floristic structures, while the alternation of glacials and interglacials is presumed to have further shaped the present discontinuous genetic pattern of temperate plants. Here we consider Capparis spinosa, a xeromorphic Tethyan relict, to discuss its divergence pattern and explore how it responded in a stepwise fashion to Pleistocene geologic and climatic changes. 267 individuals from 31 populations were sampled and 24 haplotypes were identified, based on three cpDNA fragments (trnL-trnF, rps12-rpl20, and ndhF). SAMOVA clustered the 31 populations into 5 major clades. AMOVA suggests that gene flow between them might be restricted by vicariance. Molecular clock dating indicates that intraspecific divergence began in early Pleistocene, consistent with a time of intense uplift of the Himalaya and Tianshan Mountains, and intensified in mid-Pleistocene. Species distribution modeling suggests range reduction in the high mountains during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) as a result of cold climates when glacier advanced, while gorges at midelevations in Tianshan appear to have served as refugia. Populations of low-altitude desert regions, on the other hand, probably experienced only marginal impacts from glaciation, according to the high levels of genetic diversity.

  15. Phylogeographic Structure of a Tethyan Relict Capparis spinosa (Capparaceae Traces Pleistocene Geologic and Climatic Changes in the Western Himalayas, Tianshan Mountains, and Adjacent Desert Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian Wang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Complex geological movements more or less affected or changed floristic structures, while the alternation of glacials and interglacials is presumed to have further shaped the present discontinuous genetic pattern of temperate plants. Here we consider Capparis spinosa, a xeromorphic Tethyan relict, to discuss its divergence pattern and explore how it responded in a stepwise fashion to Pleistocene geologic and climatic changes. 267 individuals from 31 populations were sampled and 24 haplotypes were identified, based on three cpDNA fragments (trnL-trnF, rps12-rpl20, and ndhF. SAMOVA clustered the 31 populations into 5 major clades. AMOVA suggests that gene flow between them might be restricted by vicariance. Molecular clock dating indicates that intraspecific divergence began in early Pleistocene, consistent with a time of intense uplift of the Himalaya and Tianshan Mountains, and intensified in mid-Pleistocene. Species distribution modeling suggests range reduction in the high mountains during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM as a result of cold climates when glacier advanced, while gorges at midelevations in Tianshan appear to have served as refugia. Populations of low-altitude desert regions, on the other hand, probably experienced only marginal impacts from glaciation, according to the high levels of genetic diversity.

  16. Leaf wax biomarker reconstruction of Early Pleistocene hydrological variation during hominin evolution in West Turkana, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupien, R.; Russell, J. M.; Cohen, A. S.; Feibel, C. S.; Beck, C.; Castañeda, I. S.

    2016-12-01

    Climate change is thought to play a critical role in human evolution; however, this hypothesis is difficult to test due to a lack of long, high-quality paleoclimate records from key hominin fossil locales. To address this issue, we examine Plio-Pleistocene lake sediment drill cores from East Africa that were recovered by the Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project, an international effort to study the environment in which our hominin ancestors evolved and dispersed. With new data we test various evolutionary hypotheses, such as the "variability selection" hypothesis, which posits that high-frequency environmental variations selected for generalist traits that allowed hominins to expand into variable environments. We analyzed organic geochemical signals of climate in lake cores from West Turkana, Kenya, which span 1.87-1.38 Ma and contain the first fossils from Homo erectus. In particular, we present a compound-specific hydrogen isotopic analysis of terrestrial plant waxes (δDwax) that records regional hydrology. The amount effect dominates water isotope fractionation in the tropics; therefore, these data are interpreted to reflect mean annual rainfall, which affects vegetation structure and thus, hominin habitats. The canonical view of East Africa is that climate became drier and increasingly felt high-latitude glacial-interglacial cycles during the Plio-Pleistocene. However, the drying trend seen in some records is not evident in Turkana δDwax, signifying instead a climate with a steady mean state. Spectral and moving variance analyses indicate paleohydrological variations related to both high-latitude glaciation (41 ky cycle) and local insolation-forced monsoons (21 ky cycle). An interval of particularly high-amplitude rainfall variation occurs at 1.7 Ma, which coincides with the intensification of the Walker Circulation. These results identify high- and low-latitude controls on East African paleohydrology during Homo erectus evolution. In particular, the

  17. Pollen analyses of Pleistocene hyaena coprolites from Montenegro and Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Argant Jacqueline

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The results of pollen analyses of hyaena coprolites from the Early Pleistocene cave of Trlica in northern Montenegro and the Late Pleistocene cave of Baranica in southeast Serbia are described. The Early Pleistocene Pachycrocuta brevirostris, and the Late Pleistocene Crocuta spelaea are coprolite-producing species. Although the pollen concentration was rather low, the presented analyses add considerably to the much-needed knowledge of the vegetation of the central Balkans during the Pleistocene. Pollen extracted from a coprolite from the Baranica cave indicates an open landscape with the presence of steppe taxa, which is in accordance with the recorded conditions and faunal remains. Pollen analysis of the Early Pleistocene samples from Trlica indicate fresh and temperate humid climatic conditions, as well as the co-existence of several biotopes which formed a mosaic landscape in the vicinity of the cave.

  18. Discontinuity of human presence at Atapuerca during the early Middle Pleistocene: a matter of ecological competition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Gómez, Guillermo; Mateos, Ana; Martín-González, Jesús Angel; Blasco, Ruth; Rosell, Jordi; Rodríguez, Jesús

    2014-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that the European human settlement is older than 1.2 Ma. However, there is a fierce debate about the continuity or discontinuity of the early human settlement of Europe. In particular, evidence of human presence in the interval 0.7-0.5 Ma is scarce in comparison with evidence for the previous and later periods. Here, we present a case study in which the environmental conditions at Sierra de Atapuerca in the early Middle Pleistocene, a period without evidence of human presence, are compared with the conditions in the previous period, for which a relatively intense human occupation is documented. With this objective in mind, the available resources for a human population and the intensity of competition between secondary consumers during the two periods are compared using a mathematical model. The Gran Dolina site TD8 level, dated to 0.7-0.6 Ma, is taken as representative of the period during which Atapuerca was apparently not occupied by humans. Conditions at TD8 are compared with those of the previous period, represented by the TD6-2 level, which has yielded abundant evidence of intense human occupation. The results show that survival opportunities for a hypothetical human population were lower at TD8 than they were at TD6-2. Increased resource competition between secondary consumers arises as a possible explanation for the absence of human occupation at Atapuerca in the early Middle Pleistocene.

  19. Modeling 100,000-year climate fluctuations in pre-Pleistocene time series

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowley, Thomas J.; Kim, Kwang-Yul; Mengel, John G.; Short, David A.

    1992-01-01

    A number of pre-Pleistocene climate records exhibit significant fluctuations at the 100,000-year (100-ky) eccentricity period, before the time of such fluctuations in global ice volume. The origin of these fluctuations has been obscure. Results reported here from a modeling study suggest that such a response can occur over low-altitude land areas involved in monsoon fluctuations. The twice yearly passage of the sun across the equator and the seasonal timing of perihelion interact to increase both 100-ky and 400-ky power in the modeled temperature field. The magnitude of the temperature response is sufficiently large to leave an imprint on the geologic record, and simulated fluctuations resemble those found in records of Triassic lake levels.

  20. Using provenance of terrigenous sediment to reconstruct the Agulhas Leakage during the Early and Late Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, B.; Franzese, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    instance, for the Early Pleistocene ( 1.3 - 1.5 Ma), K-Ar model ages correlate with shipboard measurements of natural gamma radiation, which show approximate 41 kyr periodicity.

  1. Fossil amphibians and reptiles from Tegelen (Province of Limburg) and the early Pleistocene palaeoclimate of The Netherlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villa, Andrea; Blain, Hugues-Alexandre; van den Hoek Ostende, Lars W.; Delfino, Massimo

    2018-05-01

    Few Quaternary herpetofaunas have been recovered from The Netherlands. Among these, the one coming from the early Pleistocene site of the Russel-Tiglia-Egypte pit near Tegelen is of particular interest, because it is the type locality of the recently described, last western European palaeobatrachid anuran, Palaeobatrachus eurydices. The large number of fossil remains of amphibians and reptiles found in the pit are representative of a very diverse fauna, including at least 17 taxa: Triturus gr. T. cristatus, Lissotriton sp., Pelobates fuscus, Bufo bufo, Bombina sp., Pelophylax sp., Rana sp., Hyla gr. H. arborea, Pelodytes sp., Mauremys sp., Lacerta sp., Lacertidae indet., Anguis gr. A. fragilis, cf. Pseudopus sp., "colubrines" indet., Natrix natrix and Vipera sp. Emys orbicularis, previously reported from a different Tegelen pit, is not present in this assemblage. Palaeoclimatic conditions reconstructed based on the herpetofaunistic association indicate a humid subtropical climate (Cfa according to the Köppen-Geiger classification of climates) for Tegelen during the TC5 section of the Tiglian, with low, but fairly regular rainfalls during the year. Mean annual temperature was 13.4 ± 0.3 °C and mean annual precipitation was 542 ± 50 mm. Moreover, three dry months were present during summer and early autumn, resulting in a much drier climate than the one present at Tegelen today. Nevertheless, the occurrence of the water-dwelling P. eurydices suggests the persistence of suitable permanent water bodies during the whole year, and the survival of this taxon in this part of Europe might have been allowed by the generally humid climate.

  2. The Towuti Drilling Project: A new, long Pleistocene record of Indo-Pacific Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, James M.; Vogel, Hendrik; Bijaksana, Satria; Melles, Martin

    2016-04-01

    Lake Towuti is the largest tectonic lake in Indonesia, and the longest known terrestrial sediment archive in Southeast Asia. Lake Towuti's location in central Indonesia provides an important opportunity to reconstruct long-term changes in terrestrial climate in the Western Pacific warm pool, heart of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation. Lake Towuti has extremely high rates of floral and faunal endemism and is surrounded by one of the most diverse tropical forests on Earth making it a hotspot of Southeast Asian biodiversity. The ultramafic rocks and soils surrounding Lake Towuti provide high concentrations of metals to the lake and its sediments that feed a diverse, exotic microbial community. From May - July, 2015, the Towuti Drilling Project, consisting of more than 30 scientists from eight countries, recovered over 1,000 meters of new sediment core from 3 different drill sites in Lake Towuti, including cores through the entire sediment column to bedrock. These new sediment cores will allow us to investigate the history of rainfall and temperature in central Indonesia, long-term changes in the composition of the region's rainforests and diverse aquatic ecosystems, and the micro-organisms living in Towuti's exotic, metal-rich sediments. The Indo-Pacific region plays a pivotal role in the Earth's climate system, regulating critical atmospheric circulation systems and the global concentration of atmospheric water vapor- the Earth's most important greenhouse gas. Changes in seasonal insolation, greenhouse gas concentrations, ice volume, and local sea level are each hypothesized to exert a dominant control on Indo-Pacific hydroclimate variations through the Pleistocene. Existing records from the region are short and exhibit fundamental differences and complexity in orbital-scale climate patterns that limit our understanding of the regional climate responses to climate boundary conditions. Our sediment cores, which span much of the past 1 million years, allow new tests of

  3. Compilation of information on the climate and evaluation of the hydrochemical and isotopic composition during Late Pleistocene and Holocene

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andersson, Cecilia

    1998-01-01

    This report summarises and evaluates some of the existing information on the Late Pleistocene and Holocene climates, i.e. the last 130 000 years. An estimation of the conditions at the Aespoe island (southeast Sweden) has also been made during this time span. The knowledge about Late Pleistocene (Eemian Interglacial and Weichselian glacial) is not yet fully understood. There are still a lot of assumptions concerning this period and more information is needed to be able to establish the climatic conditions. This is not the case for the Weichselian deglaciation and the present interglacial, Holocene, for which the environmental conditions are quite certain. It has been concluded, however, that the Eemian climatic development probably was similar to the Holocene but perhaps somewhat warmer and more humid. The Eemian Baltic Sea level was probably also higher than the present Baltic Sea level and there was a connection between it and the White Sea in the northeast. Aespoe was probably situated below sea level during the greater part of Eemian. Not much is known about the last glacial period, the Weichselian glaciation, until the final deglaciation. The ice sheet during Early Weichselian was probably mostly concentrated to the Scandinavian mountain area and in northern Scandinavia. At least two intervals with higher temperatures have been recorded, the Broerup and Odderade interstadials. The Middle Weichselian substage is characterised by fluctuations, melting and re-advances. Aespoe was probably not glaciated until the middle or latter part of Middle Weichselian. The maximum extension of the Weichselian ice sheet occurred in Late Weichselian, around 20 to 18 ka BP, which was succeeded by the final deglaciation. The retreat of the Weichselian ice sheet is described by for example end moraines and glacial varved clay. The Aespoe area was glaciated until 12 500 BP. Huge quantities of glacial meltwater was released into the Baltic basin as the ice receded. Due to different

  4. Compilation of information on the climate and evaluation of the hydrochemical and isotopic composition during Late Pleistocene and Holocene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andersson, Cecilia [Intera KB (Sweden)

    1998-01-01

    This report summarises and evaluates some of the existing information on the Late Pleistocene and Holocene climates, i.e. the last 130 000 years. An estimation of the conditions at the Aespoe island (southeast Sweden) has also been made during this time span. The knowledge about Late Pleistocene (Eemian Interglacial and Weichselian glacial) is not yet fully understood. There are still a lot of assumptions concerning this period and more information is needed to be able to establish the climatic conditions. This is not the case for the Weichselian deglaciation and the present interglacial, Holocene, for which the environmental conditions are quite certain. It has been concluded, however, that the Eemian climatic development probably was similar to the Holocene but perhaps somewhat warmer and more humid. The Eemian Baltic Sea level was probably also higher than the present Baltic Sea level and there was a connection between it and the White Sea in the northeast. Aespoe was probably situated below sea level during the greater part of Eemian. Not much is known about the last glacial period, the Weichselian glaciation, until the final deglaciation. The ice sheet during Early Weichselian was probably mostly concentrated to the Scandinavian mountain area and in northern Scandinavia. At least two intervals with higher temperatures have been recorded, the Broerup and Odderade interstadials. The Middle Weichselian substage is characterised by fluctuations, melting and re-advances. Aespoe was probably not glaciated until the middle or latter part of Middle Weichselian. The maximum extension of the Weichselian ice sheet occurred in Late Weichselian, around 20 to 18 ka BP, which was succeeded by the final deglaciation. The retreat of the Weichselian ice sheet is described by for example end moraines and glacial varved clay. The Aespoe area was glaciated until 12 500 BP. Huge quantities of glacial meltwater was released into the Baltic basin as the ice receded. Due to different

  5. Microbial Community Dynamics from Permafrost Across the Pleistocene-Holocene Boundary and Response to Abrupt Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammad, A.; Mahony, M.; Froese, D. G.; Lanoil, B. D.

    2014-12-01

    Earth is currently undergoing rapid warming similar to that observed about 10,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene. We know a considerable amount about the adaptations and extinctions of mammals and plants at the Pleistocene/Holocene (P/H) boundary, but relatively little about changes at the microbial level. Due to permafrost soils' freezing anoxic conditions, they act as microbial diversity archives allowing us to determine how microbial communities adapted to the abrupt warming at the end of P. Since microbial community composition only helps differentiate viable and extant microorganisms in frozen permafrost, microbial activity in thawing permafrost must be investigated to provide a clear understanding of microbial response to climate change. Current increased temperatures will result in warming and potential thaw of permafrost and release of stored organic carbon, freeing it for microbial utilization; turning permafrost into a carbon source. Studying permafrost viable microbial communities' diversity and activity will provide a better understanding of how these microorganisms respond to soil edaphic variability due to climate change across the P/H boundary, providing insight into the changes that the soil community is currently undergoing in this modern era of rapid climate change. Modern soil, H and P permafrost cores were collected from Lucky Lady II site outside Dawson City, Yukon. 16S rRNA high throughput sequencing of permafrost DNA showed the same trends for total and viable community richness and diversity with both decreasing with permafrost depth and only the richness increasing in mid and early P. The modern, H and P soils had 50.9, 33.9, and 27.3% unique viable species and only 14% of the total number of viable species were shared by all soils. Gas flux measurements of thawed permafrost showed metabolic activity in modern and permafrost soils, aerobic CH­­4 consumption in modern, some H and P soils, and anaerobic CH­­4 production in one H

  6. Millennial-scale northern Hemisphere Atlantic-Pacific climate teleconnections in the earliest Middle Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyodo, Masayuki; Bradák, Balázs; Okada, Makoto; Katoh, Shigehiro; Kitaba, Ikuko; Dettman, David L; Hayashi, Hiroki; Kumazawa, Koyo; Hirose, Kotaro; Kazaoka, Osamu; Shikoku, Kizuku; Kitamura, Akihisa

    2017-08-30

    Suborbital-scale climate variations, possibly caused by solar activity, are observed in the Holocene and last-glacial climates. Recently published bicentennial-resolution paleoceanic environmental records reveal millennial-scale high-amplitude oscillations postdating the last geomagnetic reversal in the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 19 interglacial. These oscillations, together with decoupling of post-reversal warming from maximum sea-level highstand in mid-latitudes, are key features for understanding the climate system of MIS 19 and the following Middle Pleistocene. It is unclear whether the oscillations are synchronous, or have the same driver as Holocene cycles. Here we present a high resolution record of western North Pacific submarine anoxia and sea surface bioproductivity from the Chiba Section, central Japan. The record reveals many oxic events in MIS 19, coincident with cold intervals, or with combined cold and sea-level fall events. This allows detailed correlations with paleoceanic records from the mid-latitude North Atlantic and Osaka Bay, southwest Japan. We find that the millennial-scale oscillations are synchronous between East and West hemispheres. In addition, during the two warmest intervals, bioproductivity follows the same pattern of change modulated by bicentennial cycles that are possibly related to solar activity.

  7. Parallel responses of bees to Pleistocene climate change in three isolated archipelagos of the southwestern Pacific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groom, Scott V C; Stevens, Mark I; Schwarz, Michael P

    2014-06-22

    The impacts of glacial cycles on the geographical distribution and size of populations have been explored for numerous terrestrial and marine taxa. However, most studies have focused on high latitudes, with only a few focused on the response of biota to the last glacial maximum (LGM) in equatorial regions. Here, we examine how population sizes of key bee fauna in the southwest Pacific archipelagos of Fiji, Vanuatu and Samoa have fluctuated over the Quaternary. We show that all three island faunas suffered massive population declines, roughly corresponding in time to the LGM, followed by rapid expansion post-LGM. Our data therefore suggest that Pleistocene climate change has had major impacts across a very broad tropical region. While other studies indicate widespread Holarctic effects of the LGM, our data suggest a much wider range of latitudes, extending to the tropics, where these climate change repercussions were important. As key pollinators, the inferred changes in these bee faunas may have been critical in the development of the diverse Pacific island flora. The magnitude of these responses indicates future climate change scenarios may have alarming consequences for Pacific island systems involving pollinator-dependent plant communities and agricultural crops.

  8. Amphibian DNA shows marked genetic structure and tracks pleistocene climate change in northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carnaval, Ana Carolina; Bates, John M

    2007-12-01

    The glacial refugia paradigm has been broadly applied to patterns of species dynamics and population diversification. However, recent geological studies have demonstrated striking Pleistocene climate changes in currently semiarid northeastern Brazil at time intervals much more frequent than the climatic oscillations associated with glacial and interglacial periods. These geomorphic data documented recurrent pulses of wet regimes in the past 210,000 years that correlate with climate anomalies affecting multiple continents. While analyzing DNA sequences of two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome b and NADH-dehydrogenase subunit 2) and one nuclear marker (cellular-myelocytomatosis proto-oncogene) in the forest-associated frogs Proceratophrys boiei and Ischnocnema gr. ramagii, we found evidence of biological responses consistent with these pluvial maxima events. Sampled areas included old, naturally isolated forest enclaves within the semiarid Caatinga, as well as recent man-made fragments of humid coastal Atlantic forest. Results show that mtDNA lineages in enclave populations are monophyletic or nearly so, whereas nonenclave populations are polyphyletic and more diverse. The studied taxa show evidence of demographic expansions at times that match phases of pluvial maxima inferred from geological data. Divergence times between several populations fall within comparatively drier intervals suggested by geomorphology. Mitochondrial and nuclear data show local populations to be genetically structured, with some high levels of differentiation that suggest the need of further taxonomic work.

  9. Paleoecological and climatic implications of stable isotope results from late Pleistocene bone collagen, Ziegeleigrube Coenen, Germany

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wißing, Christoph; Matzerath, Simon; Turner, Elaine; Bocherens, Hervé

    2015-07-01

    Climatic and ecological conditions during Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 3 are complex and the impact of cold spells on the ecosystems in Central Europe still needs to be investigated thoroughly. Ziegeleigrube Coenen (ZC) is a late Pleistocene MIS 3 locality in the Lower Rhine Embayment of Germany, radiocarbon-dated to > 34 14C ka BP. The site yielded a broad spectrum of mammal species. We investigated the carbon (δ13C), nitrogen (δ15N) and sulfur (δ34S) isotope signatures of bone collagen, since these are valuable tools in characterizing ecological niches, environmental conditions and aspects of climate and mobility. By comparison with pre- and post-Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) sites in Central Europe we show that ZC belongs in a cold event of MIS 3 and was climatically more similar to post-LGM sites than to pre-LGM sites. However, the trophic structure resembled that of typical pre-LGM sites in Belgium. This cold event in MIS 3 changed the bottom of the foodweb, but do not seem to have had a direct impact on the occurrence of the mammalian species and their ecological distribution. Apparently the (mega-) faunal community could adapt also to harsher environmental conditions during MIS 3.

  10. Is the climate right for pleistocene rewilding? Using species distribution models to extrapolate climatic suitability for mammals across continents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orien M W Richmond

    Full Text Available Species distribution models (SDMs are increasingly used for extrapolation, or predicting suitable regions for species under new geographic or temporal scenarios. However, SDM predictions may be prone to errors if species are not at equilibrium with climatic conditions in the current range and if training samples are not representative. Here the controversial "Pleistocene rewilding" proposal was used as a novel example to address some of the challenges of extrapolating modeled species-climate relationships outside of current ranges. Climatic suitability for three proposed proxy species (Asian elephant, African cheetah and African lion was extrapolated to the American southwest and Great Plains using Maxent, a machine-learning species distribution model. Similar models were fit for Oryx gazella, a species native to Africa that has naturalized in North America, to test model predictions. To overcome biases introduced by contracted modern ranges and limited occurrence data, random pseudo-presence points generated from modern and historical ranges were used for model training. For all species except the oryx, models of climatic suitability fit to training data from historical ranges produced larger areas of predicted suitability in North America than models fit to training data from modern ranges. Four naturalized oryx populations in the American southwest were correctly predicted with a generous model threshold, but none of these locations were predicted with a more stringent threshold. In general, the northern Great Plains had low climatic suitability for all focal species and scenarios considered, while portions of the southern Great Plains and American southwest had low to intermediate suitability for some species in some scenarios. The results suggest that the use of historical, in addition to modern, range information and randomly sampled pseudo-presence points may improve model accuracy. This has implications for modeling range shifts of

  11. Humans rather than climate the primary cause of Pleistocene megafaunal extinction in Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Kaars, Sander; Miller, Gifford H.; Turney, Chris S. M.; Cook, Ellyn J.; Nürnberg, Dirk; Schönfeld, Joachim; Kershaw, A. Peter; Lehman, Scott J.

    2017-01-01

    Environmental histories that span the last full glacial cycle and are representative of regional change in Australia are scarce, hampering assessment of environmental change preceding and concurrent with human dispersal on the continent ca. 47,000 years ago. Here we present a continuous 150,000-year record offshore south-western Australia and identify the timing of two critical late Pleistocene events: wide-scale ecosystem change and regional megafaunal population collapse. We establish that substantial changes in vegetation and fire regime occurred ∼70,000 years ago under a climate much drier than today. We record high levels of the dung fungus Sporormiella, a proxy for herbivore biomass, from 150,000 to 45,000 years ago, then a marked decline indicating megafaunal population collapse, from 45,000 to 43,100 years ago, placing the extinctions within 4,000 years of human dispersal across Australia. These findings rule out climate change, and implicate humans, as the primary extinction cause. PMID:28106043

  12. Continuity or discontinuity in the European Early Pleistocene human settlement: the Atapuerca evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martinón-Torres, María; Blasco, Ruth; Rosell, Jordi; Carbonell, Eudald

    2013-09-01

    The nature, timing, pattern, favourable circumstances and impediments of the human occupation of the European continent during the Early Pleistocene are hot topics in Quaternary studies. In particular, the problem of the (dis) continuity of the settlement of Europe in this period is an important matter of discussion, which has been approached in the last decade from different points of view. The Gran Dolina (TD) and Sima del Elefante (TE) cave sites in the Sierra de Atapuerca, (Spain) include large and quasi-continuous stratigraphic sequences that stretch back from at least 1.2 million years ago (Ma) to the Matuyama/Brunhes boundary. The archaeological and paleontological record from these sites can help to test different hypotheses about the character of the human settlement in this region and period. Furthermore, the TD6 level has yielded a large collection of human fossil remains attributed to Homo antecessor. According to different geochronological methods, as well as to paleomagnetic and biostratigraphical analyses, these hominins belong to an age range of 0.96-0.80 Ma. Unfortunately, the finding in 2007 of some human fossil remains in the TE9 level, dated to about 1.22 Ma, was not enough to conclude whether H. antecessor had deep roots in the European Early Pleistocene. A set of derived features of H. antecessor shared with both the Neanderthal lineage and modern humans suggests that this species is related, and not far, from the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of Homo neanderthalensis and Homo sapiens. If we assume that there was a lineal biological relationship between the TE9 and TD6 hominins, we should reconsider many of the conclusions achieved in previous paleontological and genetic studies. In addition, we would be obliged to build a highly complicated paleogeographical scenario for the origin of the MRCA. Although continuity in the settlement of Europe during the entire late Early Pleistocene is not discarded (e.g. in refuge areas), it seems that

  13. Demographic expansion of two Tamarix species along the Yellow River caused by geological events and climate change in the Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Hong-Yan; Feng, Zhi-Pei; Pei, Bing; Li, Yong; Yang, Xi-Tian

    2018-01-08

    The geological events and climatic fluctuations during the Pleistocene played important roles in shaping patterns of species distribution. However, few studies have evaluated the patterns of species distribution that were influenced by the Yellow River. The present work analyzed the demography of two endemic tree species that are widely distributed along the Yellow River, Tamarix austromongolica and Tamarix chinensis, to understand the role of the Yellow River and Pleistocene climate in shaping their distribution patterns. The most common chlorotype, chlorotype 1, was found in all populations, and its divergence time could be dated back to 0.19 million years ago (Ma). This dating coincides well with the formation of the modern Yellow River and the timing of Marine Isotope Stages 5e-6 (MIS 5e-6). Bayesian reconstructions along with models of paleodistribution revealed that these two species experienced a demographic expansion in population size during the Quaternary period. Approximate Bayesian computation analyses supported a scenario of expansion approximately from the upper to lower reaches of the Yellow River. Our results provide support for the roles of the Yellow River and the Pleistocene climate in driving demographic expansion of the populations of T. austromongolica and T. chinensis. These findings are useful for understanding the effects of geological events and past climatic fluctuations on species distribution patterns.

  14. Reconsideration of the systematics of the Early Pleistocene Cervavitus (Cervidae, Artiodactyla, Mammalia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong, W.

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Cervavitus were usually found from the Late Miocene and Pliocene deposits in East Europe, Middle Asia and North China, but they were found recently in many Early Pleistocene localities in southern China. The latter resulted in the discussion of their systematic status between Cervavitus and Cervus. Here we show the Early Pleistocene forms from southern China are morphometrically more similar to northern China Cervavitus species, and the cladistic analysis shows that the southern China forms are closer to classic Cervavitus species than Cervus and that also proves their systematic status in Cervavitus rather than in Cervus. Cervavitus originated in Moldovan forests of East Europe in the late Vallesian (MN10 from a brachyodont and holometacarpal ancestor with two/three-tined antlers and Palaeomeryx fold and evolved into C. novorossiae. It dispersed into West Europe forests in the earliest Turolian and further west to France in the Ruscinian. It dispersed into northern China forests in the early Turolian and represented by C. shanxius. The great quantity of C. shanxius specimens with brachyodont teeth and complete lateral metacarpals implies the arid Loess Plateau of today was a humid forested region in the Late Miocene. C. shanxius migrated southwards in the Plio-Pleistocene probably due to the drying environment in northern China with uplifting of Himalayas and evolved into C. ultimus and C. fenqii, which survived in southern China until the Early Pleistocene (MNQ18.La revisión sistemática de Cervivatus sugiere que deriva del principal clado de los cérvidos posteriores a los muntiacinos, e implica que Procervulinae, Dicrocerinae y la primeras formas de Munticiacinae serían holometacarpales, como también lo es Cervivatus, originario en los bosques de Moldavia (Europa del Este durante el Vallesiense final (MN 10, a partir de un antecesor braquiodonto y holometacarpal, con astas con dos o tres candiles y pliegue paleomerícido, y que da lugar a

  15. Reconstructing Early Pleistocene (1.3 Ma) terrestrial environmental change in western Anatolia: Did it drive fluvial terrace formation?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldkamp, A.; Candy, I.; Jongmans, A.G.; Maddy, D.; Demir, T.; Schoorl, J.M.; Schreve, D.; Stemerdink, C.; Schriek, van der T.

    2015-01-01

    A terrestrial environmental reconstruction of an Early Pleistocene landscape from western Anatolia is presented. The basis of this reconstruction is a sedimentary stack comprising fluvial and colluvial slope deposits. Contained within this stack is a sequence comprising two massive laminar calcretes

  16. Greigite formed in early Pleistocene lacustrine sediments from the Heqing Basin, southwest China, and its paleoenvironmental implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiang, Xiaoke; Xu, Xinwen; Zhao, Hui; Fu, Chaofeng

    2018-05-01

    The ferrimagnetic iron sulfide greigite (Fe3S4) occurs widely in sulfidic lacustrine and marine sedimentary environments. Knowledge of its formation and persistence is important for both magnetostratigraphic and paleoenvironmental studies. Although the formation mechanism of greigite has been widely demonstrated, the sedimentary environments associated with greigite formation in lakes, especially on relatively long timescales, are poorly understood. A long and continuous sequence of Pleistocene lacustrine sediments was recovered in the Heqing drill core from southwestern China, which provides an outstanding record of continental climate and environment. Integrated magnetic, geochemical, and paleoclimatic analysis of the lacustrine sequence provides an opportunity to improve our understanding of the environmental controls on greigite formation. Rock magnetic and scanning electron microscope analyses of selected samples from the core reveal that greigite is present in the lower part of the core (part 1, 665.8-372.5 m). Greigite occurs throughout this interval and is the dominant magnetic mineral, irrespective of the climatic state. The magnetic susceptibility (χ) record, which is mainly controlled by the concentration of greigite, matches well with variations in the Indian Summer Monsoon (ISM) index and total organic carbon (TOC) content, with no significant time lag. This indicates that the greigite formed during early diagenesis. In greigite-bearing intervals, with the χ increase, Bc value increase and tends to be stable at about 50 mT. Therefore, we suggest that χ values could estimate the variation of greigite concentration approximately in the Heqing core. Greigite favored more abundant in terrigenous-rich and organic-poor layers associated with weak summer monsoon which are characterized by high χ values, high Fe content, high Rb/Sr ratio and low TOC content. Greigite enhancement can be explained by variations in terrigenous inputs. Our studies demonstrate

  17. Multilocus phylogeography of a widespread savanna-woodland-adapted rodent reveals the influence of Pleistocene geomorphology and climate change in Africa's Zambezi region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonough, Molly M; Šumbera, Radim; Mazoch, Vladimír; Ferguson, Adam W; Phillips, Caleb D; Bryja, Josef

    2015-10-01

    Understanding historical influences of climate and physiographic barriers in shaping patterns of biodiversity remains limited for many regions of the world. For mammals of continental Africa, phylogeographic studies, particularly for West African lineages, implicate both geographic barriers and climate oscillations in shaping small mammal diversity. In contrast, studies for southern African species have revealed conflicting phylogenetic patterns for how mammalian lineages respond to both climate change and geologic events such as river formation, especially during the Pleistocene. However, these studies were often biased by limited geographic sampling or exclusively focused on large-bodied taxa. We exploited the broad southern African distribution of a savanna-woodland-adapted African rodent, Gerbilliscus leucogaster (bushveld gerbil) and generated mitochondrial, autosomal and sex chromosome data to quantify regional signatures of climatic and vicariant biogeographic phenomena. Results indicate the most recent common ancestor for all G. leucogaster lineages occurred during the early Pleistocene. We documented six divergent mitochondrial lineages that diverged ~0.270-0.100 mya, each of which was geographically isolated during periods characterized by alterations to the course of the Zambezi River and its tributaries as well as regional 'megadroughts'. Results demonstrate the presence of a widespread lineage exhibiting demographic expansion ~0.065-0.035 mya, a time that coincides with savanna-woodland expansion across southern Africa. A multilocus autosomal perspective revealed the influence of the Kafue River as a current barrier to gene flow and regions of secondary contact among divergent mitochondrial lineages. Our results demonstrate the importance of both climatic fluctuations and physiographic vicariance in shaping the distribution of southern African biodiversity. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. The integration of multiple independent data reveals an unusual response to Pleistocene climatic changes in the hard tick Ixodes ricinus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porretta, Daniele; Mastrantonio, Valentina; Mona, Stefano; Epis, Sara; Montagna, Matteo; Sassera, Davide; Bandi, Claudio; Urbanelli, Sandra

    2013-03-01

    In the last few years, improved analytical tools and the integration of genetic data with multiple sources of information have shown that temperate species exhibited more complex responses to ice ages than previously thought. In this study, we investigated how Pleistocene climatic changes affected the current distribution and genetic diversity of European populations of the tick Ixodes ricinus, an ectoparasite with high ecological plasticity. We first used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic markers to investigate the phylogeographic structure of the species and its Pleistocene history using coalescent-based methods; then we used species distribution modelling to infer the climatic niche of the species at last glacial maximum; finally, we reviewed the literature on the I. ricinus hosts to identify the locations of their glacial refugia. Our results support the scenario that during the last glacial phase, I. ricinus never experienced a prolonged allopatric divergence in separate glacial refugia, but persisted with interconnected populations across Southern and Central Europe. The generalist behaviour in host choice of I. ricinus would have played a major role in maintaining connections between its populations. Although most of the hosts persisted in separate refugia, from the point of view of I. ricinus, they represented a continuity of 'bridges' among populations. Our study highlights the importance of species-specific ecology in affecting responses to Pleistocene glacial-interglacial cycles. Together with other cases in Europe and elsewhere, it contributes to setting new hypotheses on how species with wide ecological plasticity coped with Pleistocene climatic changes. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  19. Climatic fluctuations as a significant contributing factor for volcanic collapses. Evidence from Mexico during the Late Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capra, L.; Bernal-Uruchurtu, J. P.; Carrasco, G.

    2013-05-01

    Climate oscillations have significantly contributed to the planet's evolution, including volcanic activity. Major glaciations have been considered not only as a triggering mechanism for large magmatic eruptions but also inducing volcano instability. Generally, volcano instability can be inferred from detailed volcanological and structural studies of a volcano and its associated depositional sequence, but the triggering mechanism has been always difficult to infer. In this paper, we present evidence of how climatic variations during the Late Pleistocene could have forced sector collapses of the main Mexican stratovolcanoes and enhanced the mobility of associated massive flows inducing the transformation of debris avalanche into debris flows. In particular, the climatic record based on atmospheric moisture content from robustly dated lake record from Guatemala and a U/Th dated speleothem from New Mexico are used here as indicators of summer and winter precipitation. Depositional sequences associated with Late Pleistocene sector collapses of Volcan de Colima, Nevado de Toluca, Citlaltepetl (Pico de Orizaba) and Cofre de Perote volcanoes are here analyzed. Comparing the timing of the event with the climatic record, a combination of summer and/or winter pluvial conditions could have forced and triggered the failure of already unstable volcanoes, even during glacier advances (as for the Citlaltepetl event). Independently of the main cause of the volcano instability (magmatic or tectonic) it is important to highlight that the climatic factor played an important role in enhancing the volcano instability and promoted the lateral transformation of debris avalanches, which under dry conditions would have affected more limited areas.

  20. Preliminary Study of Late Pleistocene to Early Holocene Plant Food Strategies in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi Tang, M.; Liu, X.; Fritz, G.; Zhao, Z.

    2017-12-01

    In recent decades, studies on the domestication and early cultivation of seed crops have contributed significantly to how we understand human-plant interactions, and their impact on human social organisation and the environment. It is becoming clear, however, that plants have been critical to the human diet for much longer and in more diverse ways than previously assumed. This paper is a preliminary attempt at identifying and addressing early prehistoric plant food strategies in China. In particular, very little is known about the use of vegetatively propagated plants, despite their significant representation in modern crops. Many ingredients of Chinese medicine are also roots and tubers (or vegetative storage organs, VSOs). Unlike seed crops, however, we lack a systematic criterion for examining diagnostic characters of different VSO taxa in the archaeological record. To address this issue, we characterized commonly consumed and historically significant VSOs in China, by studying experimentally charred modern samples under the optical microscope and scanning electron microscope. We then compared the characteristics of these modern VSO samples against plant remains from Late Pleistocene to early Holocene archaeological sites in China, such as Zengpiyan (Guangxi), Zhaoguodong (Guizhou), and Jiahu (Henan) sites. We found that different taxa of VSOs can be differentiated by using multiple lines of evidence, including: shape and size of various cells, texture and arrangement of cell walls, as well as anatomical arrangements of organs, especially the vascular bundles. Though identification can be difficult when fragile cell structures have collapsed or deteriorated, more robust features are often preserved for diagnosis. Our results suggest that the potential for studying the role of vegetatively propagated plants in early human-environmental interactions is overlooked, and can be expanded significantly with further investment in their systematic identification.

  1. Late Pliocene - Early Pleistocene paleoenvironmental reconstruction based on stable isotope compositions of Stephanorhinus sp. and Mammut sp. teeth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szabó, Péter; Kovács, János; Kocsis, László; Gasparik, Mihály; Vennemann, Torsten; Demény, Attila; Virág, Attila

    2014-05-01

    Stable isotope measurements of skeletal apatite from herbivorous mammals are often used to provide information on the terrestrial paleoenvironment and paleoclimate. In this study fossil teeth of Stephanorhinus Kretzoi 1942 (rhinoceros) and Mammut Blumenbach 1799 (mastodon), amongst others, were investigated from the Carpathian Basin. According to the biostratigraphy, the age of the samples has a range from Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene. Reconstructing paleoclimate and paleoenvironment of this era is important as it can be an analogue for the future climate. Oxygen and carbon isotopic compositions were measured from the tooth enamel, because it is believed to be the most resistant to diagenetic alteration (e.g., Kohn & Cerling, 2002). The carbon isotopic composition in the carbonate fraction of apatite can be related to the diet of the animal (Kohn & Cerling, 2002). Hence, it can reflect the photosynthetic pathway (C3 or C4) of the plants consumed by these herbivores. The δ18O values were determined in the phosphate fraction of apatite. In the case of large mammals that are obligate drinkers, the δ18O values closely track those of the environmental water (Bryant & Froelich, 1995). Knowing the δ18O values of environmental water and relating it to local precipitation, the mean annual temperature (MAT) of the site can be calculated (Dansgaard, 1964). The δ13C values range from -10 to -15 o (VPDB). The result clearly shows that these animals consumed C3 plants. Most of the δ13C values indicate mixed grassland-open woodland rather than a closed canopy forest. Although there is variation in the δ18O values (mean 14.2 ± 1.0 o VSMOW, n=17), most of the samples would support a MAT range of 8-12 ° C. This is in good agreement with other proxies for the localities and time period (Kovács et al., 2013). Bryant, D.J. & Froelich, P.N. (1995) A model of oxygen-isotope fractionation in bodywater of large-mammals. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 59, 4523

  2. The ESR dating of fossil enamel samples from palaeo-anthropological and Palaeolithic sites of Early Pleistocene

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen Qi; Chen Tiemei; Li Jiuqiang

    1999-01-01

    The following problems regarding the ESR dating of fossil enamel samples from palaeo-anthropological and Palaeolithic sites of Early Pleistocene are discussed: 1) the applicability of exponential fitting in the additive method for reliable AD determination; 2) the thermo-stability of the g = 2.0018 line of hydroxyapatite and its influence on apparent ESR ages; 3) the right selection of U-uptake models; and 4) the effect of high U-content in enamel on the ESR ages. It is concluded that the ESR-EU ages of Early Pleistocene enamel samples can only be regarded as the lower limit of the true ages if no appropriate corrections for the factors discussed above are made

  3. Two Late Pleistocene climate-driven incision/aggradation rhythms in the middle Dnieper River basin, west-central Russian Plain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Panin, Andrei; Adamiec, Grzegorz; Buylaert, Jan-Pieter

    2017-01-01

    Pleistocene - Holocene climate cycle. The following events were detected. (1) Late MIS 5 - early MIS 4: aggradation of Terrace T1 following the deep incision at the end of MIS 6. (2) Late MIS 4 (40-30 ka): incision into Terrace T1 below the present-day river, formation of the main scarp in the bottom...... of the valley between Terrace T1 and Terrace T0/Floodplain levels. (3) MIS 2: aggradation of Terrace T0, lateral migrations of a shallow braided channel located few meters above the present-day river since ∼25 ka through the LGM. (4) 18-13 ka: incision into Terrace T0 below the modern river. Multiple...

  4. Pleistocene climate change inferred from multi-proxy analyses of a loess-paleosol sequence in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yi; Qiu, Shifan; Fu, Shuqing; Rao, Zhiguo; Zhu, Zhaoyu

    2018-04-01

    The aeolian loess blanketing the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) is sensitive to climate change in monsoonal East Asia. Here, we present a multi-proxy climatic record from a Pleistocene loess-paleosol sequence from the Lantian Basin on the southern margin of the CLP. The measurements include magnetic susceptibility and related magnetic properties, bulk median grain-size, color reflectance, and the color-inferred hematite versus goethite ratio (Hm/Gt). A long-term aridification and cooling trend during the interval from ca 2.22-0.43 Ma is indicated by two magnetic grain-size proxies, corresponding to the global climatic cooling of the late Cenozoic. In addition, at least four intervals of climatic extremes are evident in the record of Hm/Gt ratio: at 1.71-1.65 Ma, 1.26-1.24 Ma, 0.94-0.86 Ma, and 0.62-0.48 Ma. These intervals are characterized by distinct regional climates, which contrast with the global climatic conditions represented in marine sediments. For example, a relatively arid climate is documented from 1.71 to 1.65 Ma, which was rapidly succeeded by a relatively humid climate which is associated with the earliest hominin (with an age of ca 1.63 Ma) in the Lantian Basin.

  5. The first hominin from the early Pleistocene paleocave of Haasgat, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leece, A B; Kegley, Anthony D T; Lacruz, Rodrigo S; Herries, Andy I R; Hemingway, Jason; Kgasi, Lazarus; Potze, Stephany; Adams, Justin W

    2016-01-01

    localities in the topographically-distinct northern World Heritage Site. When coupled with the substantial differences in the mammalian faunal communities between the northern localities (e.g., Haasgat, Gondolin) and well-sampled Bloubank Valley sites (e.g., Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai), the recovery of the HGT 500 specimen highlights the potential for further research at the Haasgat locality for understanding the distribution and interactions of hominin populations across the landscape, ecosystems and fossil mammalian communities of early Pleistocene South Africa. Such contextual data from sites like Haasgat is critical for understanding the transition in hominin representation at ∼2 Ma sites in the region from Australopithecus to Paranthropus and early Homo.

  6. The first hominin from the early Pleistocene paleocave of Haasgat, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AB Leece

    2016-05-01

    one of the few hominin localities in the topographically-distinct northern World Heritage Site. When coupled with the substantial differences in the mammalian faunal communities between the northern localities (e.g., Haasgat, Gondolin and well-sampled Bloubank Valley sites (e.g., Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai, the recovery of the HGT 500 specimen highlights the potential for further research at the Haasgat locality for understanding the distribution and interactions of hominin populations across the landscape, ecosystems and fossil mammalian communities of early Pleistocene South Africa. Such contextual data from sites like Haasgat is critical for understanding the transition in hominin representation at ∼2 Ma sites in the region from Australopithecus to Paranthropus and early Homo.

  7. Evidences of climatic variations during Late Pleistocene- Holocene in the eastern Bay of Bengal

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chauhan, O.S; Borole, D.V.; Gujar, A; Mascarenhas, A; Mislankar, P.G.; Rao, Ch.M.

    Based upon the variations of clay minerals, sediment texture, heavy mineral assemblage and sup(230)Th excess in the Late Pleistocene sediments of a hemipelagic core from the eastern Bay of Bengal (2713 m water depth), 35 cm and 73-78 cm levels...

  8. Late Pleistocene to early Holocene environmental changes on Store Koldewey, coastal north-east Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Klug

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available A lake sediment sequence from southern Store Koldewey, north-east Greenland, has been investigated using a multidisciplinary approach, including geophysical, geochemical, biogeochemical, biological and sedimentological methods. Chronological constraints are provided by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS 14C dating of bulk sediment and complemented with published water moss ages. The record consists of three major sediment units. Their individual structural, textural, geophysical and geochemical characteristics indicate variable input of sediment and meltwater due to variable proximity of the ice margin and therefore reflect the growth and decay of a local glacier during the late Weichselian. Radiocarbon dating of bulk sediment samples from the lowermost unit gave ages of 42 to 34 calibrated thousand years (cal Ky B.P. and indicates that this material is redeposited in the lake basin during or after the ice advance at the end of the Pleistocene. Increased meltwater and sediment input from a retreating ice margin following the Younger Dryas is indicated by the occurrence of a sandy to gravely section. Fine-grained and laminated sediments were deposited during the Pleistocene–Holocene transition and indicate calm sedimentation conditions with an ice margin outside of the lake catchment. The reoccurrence of coarse sediments during the early Holocene may indicate increased meltwater input in response to the cold spell at about 9.3 Kya with increased snow accumulation rather than fluctuations of local glaciers. The dating results furthermore show that AMS 14C dating of bulk sediment samples deposited during glacier decay in High Arctic environments can give problematic ages.

  9. Acinonyx pardinensis (Carnivora, Felidae) from the Early Pleistocene of Pantalla (Italy): predatory behavior and ecological role of the giant Plio-Pleistocene cheetah

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherin, Marco; Iurino, Dawid Adam; Sardella, Raffaele; Rook, Lorenzo

    2014-03-01

    The site of Pantalla (central Italy) yielded a rich late Villafranchian (Early Pleistocene) faunal assemblage, which includes some well-preserved large mammal skulls. We describe here two nearly complete crania and a left hemimandible of Acinonyx pardinensis from this locality, representing the most complete cranial material of this species in Europe. These finds allowed us to define more clearly the craniodental morphology of A. pardinensis. Similarly to the forms from North Africa and China, the giant cheetah from Pantalla has a more generalized skull than the living Acinonyx jubatus, showing some primitive, pantherine-like features such as the less domed dorsal outline of the cranium, the more developed sagittal and nuchal crests and the less bowed zygomatic arches. High-resolution CT scans of the specimens were used to obtain the first 3D model of a cranium with articulated mandible of A. pardinensis. Starting from the insertion areas on this model we reconstructed the jaw muscles of the Pantalla felid, confirming its affinities with pantherine felines. In the light of the musculoskeletal skull anatomy and the average body mass (about 80 kg), it is likely that A. pardinensis could kill large prey through a hunting strategy more similar to pantherine cats than to the living cheetah.

  10. Charred wood remains in the natufian sequence of el-Wad terrace (Israel): New insights into the climatic, environmental and cultural changes at the end of the Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caracuta, Valentina; Weinstein-Evron, Mina; Yeshurun, Reuven; Kaufman, Daniel; Tsatskin, Alexander; Boaretto, Elisabetta

    2016-01-01

    The major social and economic changes associated with the rise of a sedentary lifestyle and the gradual transition to food production in the southern Levant are often considered to have been triggered by climate changes at the end of the Pleistocene (∼20,000-11,000 years BP). This explanation, however, is biased by the scarcity of high-resolution climate records directly associated with human activity and the lack of refined palaeoecological studies from multi-stratified sites in the area. Here, we present the results of an anthracological analysis, carried out on charcoals collected along a continuous column of archaeological sediments in the Natufian site of el-Wad Terrace (Mount Carmel, Israel). We also present the carbon isotopes analysis of 14C-dated archaeological remains of Amygdalus sp. The analyses of charcoal shows the predominance of an oak forest including Quercus calliprinos and ithaburensis around the site during the Early Natufian building phase (∼14,600-13,700 cal BP), and the values of Δ13C point to a high rainfall rate. This period is followed by a marked decrease in the local rainfall between ∼13,700 and 12,000 cal BP). The reduction, culturally associated with the latest Early Natufian and the Late Natufian, is independently recorded by the speleothems of the region: Soreq Cave and Jerusalem Cave. This period incorporates an increase in drought tolerant species such as Amygdalus sp. Thermo-Mediterranean species, such as Olea europaea and Ceratonia siliqua, as well as Pistacia palaestina, which dominate the modern landscape, become established in the Holocene. We conclude that the Natufian settlement at el-Wad Terrace flourished in the context of oak forests, and subsequently occupation intensity decreased in concurrence to the drying trend. This shift does not correspond to the cultural typology (i.e. Early Natufian vs. Late Natufian). Human response to climate change at the terminal Pleistocene Levant was multifaceted and localized. Its

  11. European wildcat populations are subdivided into five main biogeographic groups: consequences of Pleistocene climate changes or recent anthropogenic fragmentation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattucci, Federica; Oliveira, Rita; Lyons, Leslie A; Alves, Paulo C; Randi, Ettore

    2016-01-01

    Extant populations of the European wildcat are fragmented across the continent, the likely consequence of recent extirpations due to habitat loss and over-hunting. However, their underlying phylogeographic history has never been reconstructed. For testing the hypothesis that the European wildcat survived the Ice Age fragmented in Mediterranean refuges, we assayed the genetic variation at 31 microsatellites in 668 presumptive European wildcats sampled in 15 European countries. Moreover, to evaluate the extent of subspecies/population divergence and identify eventual wild × domestic cat hybrids, we genotyped 26 African wildcats from Sardinia and North Africa and 294 random-bred domestic cats. Results of multivariate analyses and Bayesian clustering confirmed that the European wild and the domestic cats (plus the African wildcats) belong to two well-differentiated clusters (average Ф ST = 0.159, r st = 0.392, P > 0.001; Analysis of molecular variance [AMOVA]). We identified from c. 5% to 10% cryptic hybrids in southern and central European populations. In contrast, wild-living cats in Hungary and Scotland showed deep signatures of genetic admixture and introgression with domestic cats. The European wildcats are subdivided into five main genetic clusters (average Ф ST = 0.103, r st = 0.143, P > 0.001; AMOVA) corresponding to five biogeographic groups, respectively, distributed in the Iberian Peninsula, central Europe, central Germany, Italian Peninsula and the island of Sicily, and in north-eastern Italy and northern Balkan regions (Dinaric Alps). Approximate Bayesian Computation simulations supported late Pleistocene-early Holocene population splittings (from c. 60 k to 10 k years ago), contemporary to the last Ice Age climatic changes. These results provide evidences for wildcat Mediterranean refuges in southwestern Europe, but the evolution history of eastern wildcat populations remains to be clarified. Historical genetic subdivisions suggest

  12. Early Pleistocene archaeological occurrences at the Feiliang site, and the archaeology of human origins in the Nihewan Basin, North China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuwen Pei

    Full Text Available The Early Pleistocene archaeological evidence from the fluvio-lacustrine sequence of the Nihewan Basin (North China offers an excellent opportunity to explore early human evolution and behavior in a temperate setting in East Asia, following the earliest 'Out of Africa'. Here we present the first comprehensive study of the Feiliang (FL site, with emphasis on the archaeological sequence, site integrity, and stone artifact assemblages. Magnetostratigraphic dating results show that early humans occupied the site ca. 1.2 Ma. Archaeological deposits were buried rapidly in primary context within shallow lake margin deposits, with only minor post-depositional disturbance from relatively low energy hydraulic forces. The FL lithic assemblage is characterized by a core and flake, Oldowan-like or Mode 1 technology, with a low degree of standardization, expedient knapping techniques, and casually retouched flakes. The bone assemblage suggests that hominin occupation of the FL site was in an open habitat of temperate grassland with areas of steppe and water. The main features of the FL assemblage are discussed in the context of the early Pleistocene archaeology of Nihewan, for which an assessment of current and future research is also presented.

  13. Climatic implications of correlated upper Pleistocene glacial and fluvial deposits on the Cinca and Gallego rivers, NE Spain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lewis, Claudia J [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Mcdonald, Eric [NON LANL; Sancho, Carlos [NON LANL; Pena, Jose- Luis [NON LANL

    2008-01-01

    We correlate Upper Pleistocene glacial and fluvial deposits of the Cinca and Gallego River valleys (south central Pyrenees and Ebro basin, Spain) using geomorphic position, luminescence dates, and time-related trends in soil development. The ages obtained from glacial deposits indicate glacial periods at 85 {+-} 5 ka, 64 {+-} 11 ka, and 36 {+-} 3 ka (from glacial till) and 20 {+-} 3 ka (from loess). The fluvial drainage system, fed by glaciers in the headwaters, developed extensive terrace systems in the Cinca River valley at 178 {+-} 21 ka, 97 {+-} 16 ka, 61 {+-} 4 ka, 47 {+-} 4 ka, and 11 {+-} 1 ka, and in the Gallego River valley at 151 {+-} 11 ka, 68 {+-} 7 ka, and 45 {+-} 3 ka. The times of maximum geomorphic activity related to cold phases coincide with Late Pleistocene marine isotope stages and heinrich events. The maximum extent of glaciers during the last glacial occurred at 64 {+-} 11 ka, and the terraces correlated with this glacial phase are the most extensive in both the Cinca (61 {+-} 4 ka) and Gallego (68 {+-} 7 ka) valleys, indicating a strong increase in fluvial discharge and availability of sediments related to the transition to deglaciation. The global Last Glacial Maximum is scarcely represented in the south central Pyrenees owing to dominantly dry conditions at that time. Precipitation must be controlled by the position of the Iberian Peninsula with respect to the North Atlantic atmospheric circulation system. The glacial systems and the associated fluvial dynamic seem sensitive to (1) global climate changes controlled by insolation, (2) North Atlantic thermohaline circulation influenced by freshwater pulses into the North Atlantic, and (3) anomalies in atmospheric circulation in the North Atlantic controlling precipitation on the Iberian peninsula. The model of glacial and fluvial evolution during the Late Pleistocene in northern Spain could be extrapolated to other glaciated mountainous areas in southern Europe.

  14. High resolution magnetostratigraphy and raio-isotope dating of early Pleistocene lake sediments from southern Armenia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kirscher, U.; Bruch, A.A.; Gabrielyan, I.; Scharrer, S.; Kuiper, K.F.; Bachtadse, V.

    2014-01-01

    The Pleistocene geology of Armenia is dominated by widespread occurrence of sediments recording recurring rapid and drastic changes of the environmental conditions during at least the last 2 million years. These sediments, predominantly diatomites, contain a huge variety of various fossil remains,

  15. Pleistocene Arid and Wet Climatic Variability: Imprint of Glacial Climate, Tectonics and Oceanographic Events in the Sediments of the se Indian Ocean, Western Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHugh, C. M.; Castaneda, J.; Kominz, M. A.; Gallagher, S. J.; Gurnis, M.; Ishiwa, T.; Mamo, B. L.; Henderiks, J.; Christensen, B. A.; Groeneveld, J.; Yokoyama, Y.; Mustaque, S.; Iqbal, F.

    2017-12-01

    The interaction between the evolving tectonic configuration of the Indo Pacific region as a result of the northward migration of the Australian continent, and its collision with the Banda Arc began in the Late Miocene ( 8 Ma ago). This constriction played an important role in the diversion of the Indonesian Throughflow and initiation of the Leeuwin Current. These events coupled to Pleistocene glaciations left a significant imprint in the sediments offshore western Australia. The International Ocean Discovery Program Expedition 356 drilled in shelf depths of the Carnarvon and Perth Basins recovering a thick section of Pleistocene sediment from Sites U1461 (440 m thick) and U1460 (306 m), respectively. Analyses of the lithology (logs, grain size), chemistry (X-ray elemental analyses) and an initial age model constructed from biostratigraphy and radiocarbon ages were interpreted within the framework of multichannel seismic profiles. Radiocarbon ages provide control for MIS 1-4, and the identification of glacial cycles is based on shipboard biostratigraphy best developed for Site U1460. Arid and high productivity signals are linked with glacial stages. Wet conditions are associated with river discharge, terrigenous sediments and linked with interglacial stages. Except for one very pronounced interval the productivity signal during interglacials is low. High productivity during glacial stages is related to upwelling linked to the southward flowing Leeuwin Current. Comparison of the northernmost (U1461) with southernmost (U1460) sites reveals a strong arid and wet climatic variability beginning in the Pleistocene. This variability is most pronounced in the late Pleistocene post 0.8-1.0 Ma and can be correlated with glacial-interglacial cycles, especially in the more humid southern Site that was closer to the Subantarctic Front and influenced by the Westerlies. In Site U1461 we recovered the 135m thick Gorgon slide. Its occurrence at 1 Ma coincides with a rapid tectonic

  16. Liquefaction along Late Pleistocene to early Holocene Faults as Revealed by Lidar in Northwest Tasmania, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, J.; Gardner, T.

    2016-12-01

    In northwest Tasmania well-preserved mid-Holocene beach ridges with maximum radiocarbon ages of 5.25 ka occur along the coast; inland are a parallel set of lower relief beach ridges of probable MIS 5e age. The latter are cut by northeast-striking faults clearly visible on LIDAR images, with a maximum vertical displacement (evident as difference in topographic elevation) of 3 m. Also distinct on the LIDAR images are large sand boils along the fault lines; they are up to 5 m in diameter and 2-3 m high and mostly occur on the hanging wall close to the fault traces. Without LIDAR it would have been almost impossible to distinguish either the fault scarps or the sand boils. Excavations through the sand boils show that they are massive, with no internal structure, suggesting that they formed in a single event. They are composed of well-sorted, very fine white sand, identical to the sand in the underlying beach ridges. The sand boils overlie a peaty paleosol; this formed in the tea-tree swamp that formerly covered the area, and has been offset along the faults. Radiocarbon dating of the buried organic-rich paleosol gave ages of 14.8-7.2 ka, suggesting that the faulting is latest Pleistocene to early Holocene in age; it occurred prior to deposition of the mid-Holocene beach ridges, which are not offset. The beach ridge sediments are up to 7 m thick and contain an iron-cemented hard pan 1-3 m below the surface. The water table is very shallow and close to the ground surface, so the sands of the beach ridges are mostly saturated. During faulting these sands experienced extensive liquefaction. The resulting sand boils rose to a substantial height of 2-3 m, probably possibly reflecting the elevation of the potentiometric surface within the confined part of the beach ridge sediments below the iron-cemented hard pan. Motion on the faults was predominantly dip slip (shown by an absence of horizontal offset) and probably reverse, which is consistent with the present-day northwest

  17. Late Pleistocene Climate Events and The Origin of Agriculture In SW Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossignol-Strick, M.

    favourable locations, on a year-long or semi-permanent basis. They exploited, proba- bly more widely, the vegetal food resources of wild cereals and pulses. In Palestine, this culture is called Natufian. In Syria on the Middle Euphrates, the settlement at Tel Abu Hureira displays a first phase of occupation that yielded wild emmer wheat and two-row barley. These wild varieties of cereals are characterized by a brittle rachis of the ear that insures the wide dispersion of the spikelets at maturity. This Phase I came to an end with the abandonment of the site for several hundred years. The following occupation Phase II immediately yields the domesticated form of cereals, which are 1 mainly identified by the non-brittle, solid rachis at maturity. This mutant form makes possible for man to more efficiently collect the seeds with a sickle or a stick. Based on the local 14C dates, the settlement interruption is coeval with the cold, arid Younger Dryas, and the incipience of Phase II is coeval with the Climate Optimum of the early Holocene. It is striking that the domestication of emmer wheat appears to have taken place during the Younger Dryas. This strong climatic shift must somehow have constrained this most fundamental step in the globally earliest emergence of agriculture, that of SW Asia. The accumulation of grain surplus supported the human population increase that eventually led to the earliest emergence of urban civilization in SW Asia. 2

  18. Pliocene to early Middle Pleistocene ursine bears in Europe: a taxonomic overview

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Wagner, Jan

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 179, - (2010), s. 197-215 ISSN 1802-6842 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/0184; GA AV ČR IAA300130701 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : Ursus * taxonomy * Pliocene * Pleistocene Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy http://www.nm.cz/publikace/publikace-download.php?name=File1&dir=archiv&table=tabPublikaceArchiv&id=2796

  19. Late Pleistocene ecological, environmental and climatic reconstruction based on megafauna stable isotopes from northwestern Chilean Patagonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Guarda, Erwin; Domingo, Laura; Tornero, Carlos; Pino, Mario; Hernández Fernández, Manuel; Sevilla, Paloma; Villavicencio, Natalia; Agustí, Jordi

    2017-08-01

    Stable isotope analyses have been performed on the bioapatite (δ13C; δ18O) and collagen (δ13C; δ15N) of four late Pleistocene South American megafaunal taxa (Notiomastodon platensis, Equus andium, cf. Hemiauchenia paradoxa and Xenarthra indet.) to evaluate paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental conditions as well as paleoecological features of this time period. The analyzed megafauna was found at several locations in the northwestern Chilean Patagonia (38°-42°S, 74°-71°W). The bioapatite δ13C values indicated the presence of C3 vegetation ranging from forestal to woodland areas. The collagen δ15N values pointed to temperate and humid ecosystems, and to the consumption of shrubs, trees, grasses and sedges. Mean annual temperatures estimated from bioapatite δ18OPO4 values show a similarity to modern temperatures and suggested that the megafauna under study may have lived during warm stages (interstadials) of the late Pleistocene. When comparing our results with those obtained from other South American regions, we find that the diet of this particular Chilean megafauna appears to have been more influenced by resource availability than by the potential dietary range of the taxa.

  20. The Cova des Pas de Vallgornera (Llucmajor, Mallorca: a singular deposit bearing an exceptional well preserved Early Pleistocene vertebrate fauna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pere Bover

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The Cova des Pas de Vallgornera is the longest cave of Mallorca (Balearic Islands, Western Mediterranean and one of the 30 longest caves in the world. The exploration of one of the galleries allowed the discovery of a fossiliferous deposit of vertebrate remains in a remarkable preservation state. The fossil faunal complex found in this gallery is composed of up to 5 mammalian species (Myotragus aff. kopperi, Hypnomys onicensis, Nesiotites aff. ponsi, Rhinolophus aff. mehelyi and Pipistrellus sp., at least 14 bird species (among them two Mallorcan endemic taxa: Pica mourerae and Athene vallgornerensis, one reptile (Podarcis aff. lilfordi and one amphibian (Discoglossus sp.. This faunal composition is similar to the one recorded in the Pedrera de s’Ònix, a well known deposit from the Early Pleistocene of Mallorca, and shared morphological characteristics between taxa of both deposits suggest that the chronology of the Cova des Pas de Vallgornera should be considered Early Pleistocene as well. Both taxonomical analysis and chronology of this fauna furnished information on some speleological aspects of the cave.

  1. Early Pleistocene human hand phalanx from the Sima del Elefante (TE) cave site in Sierra de Atapuerca (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo, Carlos; Pablos, Adrián; Carretero, José Miguel; Huguet, Rosa; Valverdú, Josep; Martinón-Torres, María; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Carbonell, Eudald; Bermúdez de Castro, José María

    2015-01-01

    In this study, a new Early Pleistocene proximal hand phalanx (ATE9-2) from the Sima del Elefante cave site (TE - Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain), ascribed to Homo sp., is presented and comparatively described in the context of the evolution of the genus Homo. The ATE9-2 specimen is especially important because of the paucity of hand bones in the human fossil record during the Early Pleistocene. The morphological and metrical analyses of the phalanx ATE9-2 indicate that there are no essential differences between it and comparator fossil specimens for the genus Homo after 1.3 Ma (millions of years ago). Similar to Sima de los Huesos and Neandertal specimens, ATE9-2 is a robust proximal hand phalanx, probably reflecting greater overall body robusticity in these populations or a higher gracility in modern humans. The age of level TE9 from Sima del Elefante and morphological and metrical studies of ATE9-2 suggest that the morphology of the proximal hand phalanges and, thus, the morphology of the hand could have remained stable over the last 1.2-1.3 Ma. Taking into account the evidence recently provided by a metacarpal from Kaitio (Kenya) from around 1.42 Ma, we argue that modern hand morphology is present in the genus Homo subsequent to Homo habilis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. ON THE PALEOFAUNA INVERTEBRATES (MOLLUSCA, ARTROPODA; INSECTA OF DIATOMITE DEPOSITS OF SHAMB–1 LOCALITY (SISIAN SUITE, EARLY PLEISTOCENE, ARMENIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    М. A. Маrjanyan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Aim. The study of fossil insects from diatomaceous sediments of Shamb-1 locality of Sisian Suite (Early Pleistocene. The collection of fossils plants and animals of Institute of Botany of NAS RA and authors' findings served as material for study.Methods. The material is processed and prepared for study by conventional methods in paleontology for prints and fossils of insects from diatomaceous sediments. There are 654 samples studied: 2 samples were with mollusks’ imprints and 652 samples with imprints of insects, from which preserved marks on 291samples allowed to identify them up to order, family, genus and species.Results. The studied material refers to the Mollusca and Arthropoda (Insecta types. Insects are represented by species of orders Orthoptera (2 fam., Homoptera (1 fam., Heteroptera (2 fam., Coleoptera (15 fam., Hymenoptera (2 fam., Diptera (1 fam.. Coleopteras dominate among them and are presented with following species of the family – Carabidae, Dytiscidae, Hydrophilidae, Histeridae, Staphylinidae, Silphidae, Elateridae, Buprestidae, Lampyridae, Scarabaeidae, Chrysomelidae, Tenebrionidae, Coccinellidae, Cerambycidae, Curculionidae.Main conclusions. An analysis of the taxonomic composition of paleofauna was done, which corresponds to the recent fauna and with considering modern ecological characteristics of systematical groups and species. In the investigated location of Shamb-1 a version is suggested about the palaeolandscapes and palaeoclimate in the Early Pleistocene.

  3. Middle to Late Pleistocene multi-proxy record of environmental response to climate change from the Vienna Basin, Central Europe (Austria)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salcher, Bernhard C.; Frank-Fellner, Christa; Lomax, Johanna; Preusser, Frank; Ottner, Franz; Scholger, Robert; Wagreich, Michael

    2017-10-01

    Tectonic basins can represent valuable archives of the environmental history. Presented here are the stratigraphy and multi-proxy analyses of two adjacent alluvial fans in the Quaternary active parts of the Vienna Basin, situated at the interface of the Atlantic, European continental and Mediterranean climate. Deposits comprise a sequence of coarse-grained fluvial deposits intercalated by laterally extensive horizons of pedogenically altered fine sediments. To establish palaeoenvironmental reconstructions, fine-grained sequences from a drill core and outcrop data were analysed according to its malacofauna, palaeopedology, susceptibility and sedimentology. The chronological framework is provided by 38 luminescence ages and supported by geomagnetic polarity investigations. Distinct warm periods each associated with a geomagnetic excursion, are recorded in three pedocomplexes formed during the Last Interglacial and two earlier interglacial periods, indicted to correlate with Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 9 and MIS 11, respectively. Environmental conditions during the early last glacial period (MIS 5, c. 100-70 ka) are reconstructed from mollusc-shell rich overbank fines deposited along a former channel belt, covered by massive sheetflood deposits during MIS 2. Analysed warm phases suggest strong variations in humidity, ranging from steppe to forest dominated environments. The study presents one of the few numerically dated Middle Pleistocene multi-proxy records and one of the most comprehensive malacological datasets covering the early phases of last glacial period of continental Europe.

  4. The Late-Pleistocene sedimentation history in the Eastern Arabian Sea: Climate Weathering-Productivity linkage

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chodankar, A.R.

    to understand the past climate variation because the region has been shown to contain valuable sedimentary records relating to evidences of regulating glacial-interglacial climate. However, the palaeoclimate studies from this region are very limited unlike...

  5. Caribbean Reef Response to Plio-Pleistocene Climate Change: Results of the Dominican Republic Drilling Project (DRDP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaus, J.; McNeill, D. F.; Diaz, V.; Swart, P. K.; Pourmand, A.

    2014-12-01

    Caribbean reefs changed profoundly in taxonomic composition, diversity, and dominance structure during late Pliocene and Pleistocene climatic change. These changes coincide with protracted climatic deterioration and cooling between 2.0 to 0.8 Ma, and the onset of high amplitude sea-level fluctuations ~400 ka. The Dominican Republic Drilling Project (DRDP) was initiated to determine how climate change and global high-amplitude sea level changes influenced depositional patterns in Pliocene to Recent reef systems of the Caribbean. A transect of 7 core borings (~700 m total depth) were collected along the southern coast of the DR. New age constraints based on U/Th geochronometry and radiogenic Sr isotopes, combined with depositional lithofacies, faunal indicators, and stable isotope profiles have allowed us to correlate between wells and define the internal anatomy and stratal geometry of the individual reef sigmoids and sigmoid sets. Faunal records suggest most extinction occurred prior to ~1 Ma. Following this extinction, fringing reef margins of the Caribbean display a characteristic zonation in which Acropora palmata dominates shallow high-energy reef crests and Acropora cervicornis calmer fore-reef slopes and backreef lagoons. The dominance of acroporids across this zonation has been attributed to growth rates 5-100 times faster than other corals.

  6. Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene Rock Art from the Mongolian Altai: The Material and its Cultural Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther Jacobson-Tepfer

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Rock-pecked images from the northern Mongolian Altai attest to the presence of human communities within the high valleys of that region during the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene. The material provides evidence that is hitherto largely missing from the archaeological record of that region. This paper reviews the rock art, its find sites and larger physical contexts and uses evidence from paleoenvironmental studies to propose dating and cultural significance. The material is compared with other sites said to have Paleolithic imagery from Mongolia and the adjoining Russian Altai. The body of presented material offers a major resource for the study of early hunter-gatherer communities at the interface of Central and North Asia.

  7. Pleistocene climate change and the origin of two desert plant species, Pugionium cornutum and Pugionium dolabratum (Brassicaceae), in northwest China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qian; Abbott, Richard J; Yu, Qiu-Shi; Lin, Kao; Liu, Jian-Quan

    2013-07-01

    Pleistocene climate change has had an important effect in shaping intraspecific genetic variation in many species; however, its role in driving speciation is less clear. We examined the possibility of a Pleistocene origin of the only two representatives of the genus Pugionium (Brassicaceae), Pugionium cornutum and Pugionium dolabratum, which occupy different desert habitats in northwest China. We surveyed sequence variation for internal transcribed spacer (ITS), three chloroplast (cp) DNA fragments, and eight low-copy nuclear genes among individuals sampled from 11 populations of each species across their geographic ranges. One ITS mutation distinguished the two species, whereas mutations in cpDNA and the eight low-copy nuclear gene sequences were not species-specific. Although interspecific divergence varied greatly among nuclear gene sequences, in each case divergence was estimated to have occurred within the Pleistocene when deserts expanded in northwest China. Our findings point to the importance of Pleistocene climate change, in this case an increase in aridity, as a cause of speciation in Pugionium as a result of divergence in different habitats that formed in association with the expansion of deserts in China. © 2013 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2013 New Phytologist Trust.

  8. Climate impacts on transocean dispersal and habitat in gray whales from the Pleistocene to 2100

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alter, S Elizabeth; Meyer, Matthias; Post, Klaas; Czechowski, Paul; Gravlund, Peter; Gaines, Cork; Rosenbaum, Howard C; Kaschner, Kristin; Turvey, Samuel T; van der Plicht, Johannes; Shapiro, Beth; Hofreiter, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Arctic animals face dramatic habitat alteration due to ongoing climate change. Understanding how such species have responded to past glacial cycles can help us forecast their response to today's changing climate. Gray whales are among those marine species likely to be strongly affected by Arctic

  9. Pedo-chemical climate proxies in Late Pleistocene Serbian-Ukranian loess sequences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bokhorst, M.P.; Beets, C.J.; Markovic, S.B.; Gerasimenko, N.P.; Matviishina, Z.N.; Frechen, M.

    2009-01-01

    The last glacial-interglacial loess-paleosol sequences of Serbia and Ukraine provide a good climate reconstruction potential for this part of Europe. Four loess sections distributed over an area with present-day moist to semi-arid climates were studied. In addition to traditional paleoclimate

  10. Orbital- to Sub-Orbital-Scale Cyclicity in Seismic Reflections and Sediment Character in Early to Middle Pleistocene Mudstone, Santa Barbara Basin, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, C. D.; Behl, R. J.; Nicholson, C.; Lisiecki, L. E.; Sorlien, C. C.

    2009-12-01

    High-resolution seismic reflection records and well logs from the Santa Barbara Channel suggest that large parts of the Pleistocene succession records climate variability on orbital to sub-orbital scales with remarkable sensitivity, much like the well-studied sediments of the last glacial cycle (ODP Site 893). Spectral analysis of seismic reflection data and gamma ray logs from stratigraphically similar Pleistocene sections finds similar cyclic character and shifts through the section. This correlation suggests that acoustic impedance and physical properties of sediment are linked by basin-scale, likely climatically-driven, oscillations in lithologic composition and fabric during deposition, and that seismic profiling can provide a method for remote identification and correlation of orbital- and sub-orbital-scale sedimentary cyclicity. Where it crops out along the northern shelf of the central Santa Barbara Channel, the early to middle Pleistocene succession (~1.8-1.2 Ma) is a bathyal hemipelagic mudstone with remarkably rhythmic planar bedding, finely laminated fabric, and well-preserved foraminifera, none of which have been significantly altered, or obscured by post-depositional diagenesis or tectonic deformation. Unlike the coarser, turbiditic successions in the central Ventura and Los Angeles basins, this sequence has the potential to record Quaternary global climate change at high resolution. Seismic reflection data (towed chirp) collected on the R/V Melville 2008 Cruise (MV08) penetrate 10's of meters below seafloor into a ~1 km-long sequence of south-dipping seismic reflectors. Sampling parallel to the seafloor permits acquisition of consistent signal amplitude for similar reflectors without spreading loss. Based on established age ranges for this section, sedimentation rates may range from 0.4 to 1.4 meters/kyr, therefore suggesting that the most powerful cycles are orbital- to sub-orbital-scale. Discrete sets of cycles with high power show an abrupt shift

  11. Mid-Pliocene to Early Pleistocene land and sea surface temperature history of NW Australia based on organic geochemical proxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, R. A.; Castañeda, I. S.; Henderiks, J.; Christensen, B. A.; De Vleeschouwer, D.; Renema, W.; Groeneveld, J.; Bogus, K.; Gallagher, S. J.; Fulthorpe, C.; Expedition 356 Scientists, I.

    2017-12-01

    IODP Expedition 356 Site U1463 is located off the coast of NW Australia, and is sensitive to Indonesian Throughflow (ITF) variability. The ITF is a critical ocean gateway that affects global thermohaline circulation, and regulates the movement of water from the Pacific Ocean into the Indian Ocean. However, despite its importance to the global climate system, few SST reconstructions exist for this region that span the Plio-Pleistocene. Here we investigate both the land and sea-surface temperature (SST) history of NW Australia to constrain ITF variability across the Plio-Pleistocene interval. We apply multiple organic geochemical proxies to this site from 3.4-2.6 Ma, which includes the mid-Pliocene warm period, characterized by slightly higher (2-3°C) global temperatures and similar CO2 concentrations to modern values (e.g. Badger et al. 2013; Bartoli et al., 2011; Dowsett et al., 2009; Hönisch et al., 2009; Pagani et al. 2009; Raymo et al., 1996). SST was reconstructed using TEX86, based on isoprenoid glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (iGDGTs), and the long-chain diol index (LDI), based on the ratio of diols produced by marine diatoms (Rampen et al., 2012). The Uk'37 index, based on long-chain ketones, was analyzed but cannot be applied as a SST proxy at this site due to the influence of coastal alkenone producers. Additionally, a continental air temperature record was developed using the MBT'5ME proxy, based on branched GDGTs (De Jonge et al., 2014; Weijers et al., 2007). We find that TEX86, LDI and MBT'5Me exhibit similar trends and show relatively warm and stable temperatures from 3.5-2.4 Ma followed by a gradual cooling of 3-4°C from 2.4-1.5 Ma. This cooling corresponds with an arid interval previously identified on the same core by Christensen et al. (2017). Furthermore, we find that the TEX86 record agrees closely with the LR04 global benthic δ18O stack (Lisiecki and Raymo, 2005) and captures glacial/interglacial periods including Marine Isotope Stage

  12. Evolution of Early Pleistocene fluvial systems in central Poland prior to the first ice sheet advance – a case study from the Bełchatów lignite mine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goździk Jan

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Deposits formed between the Neogene/Pleistocene transition and into the Early Pleistocene have been studied, mainly on the basis of drillings and at rare, small outcrops in the lowland part of Polish territory. At the Bełchatów lignite mine (Kleszczów Graben, central Poland, one of the largest opencast pits in Europe, strata of this age have long been exposed in extensive outcrops. The present paper is based on our field studies and laboratory analyses, as well as on research data presented by other authors. For that reason, it can be seen as an overview of current knowledge of lowermost Pleistocene deposits at Bełchatów, where exploitation of the Quaternary overburden has just been completed. The results of cartographic work, sedimentological, mineralogical and palynological analyses as well as assessment of sand grain morphology have been considered. All of these studies have allowed the distinction of three Lower Pleistocene series, i.e., the Łękińsko, Faustynów and Krzaki series. These were laid down in fluvial environments between the end of the Pliocene up to the advance of the first Scandinavian ice sheet on central Poland. The following environmental features have been interpreted: phases of river incision and aggradation, changes of river channel patterns, source sediments for alluvia, rates of aeolian supply to rivers and roles of fluvial systems in morphological and geological development of the area. The two older series studied, i.e., Łękińsko and Faustynów, share common characteristics. They were formed by sinuous rivers in boreal forest and open forest environments. The Neogene substratum was the source of the alluvium. The younger series (Krzaki formed mainly in a braided river setting, under conditions of progressive climatic cooling. Over time, a gradual increase of aeolian supply to the fluvial system can be noted; initially, silt and sand were laid down, followed by sand only during cold desert conditions. These

  13. Late Pleistocene dune activity in the central Great Plains, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, J.A.; Swinehart, J.B.; Hanson, P.R.; Loope, D.B.; Goble, R.J.; Miao, X.; Schmeisser, R.L.

    2011-01-01

    Stabilized dunes of the central Great Plains, especially the megabarchans and large barchanoid ridges of the Nebraska Sand Hills, provide dramatic evidence of late Quaternary environmental change. Episodic Holocene dune activity in this region is now well-documented, but Late Pleistocene dune mobility has remained poorly documented, despite early interpretations of the Sand Hills dunes as Pleistocene relicts. New optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages from drill cores and outcrops provide evidence of Late Pleistocene dune activity at sites distributed across the central Great Plains. In addition, Late Pleistocene eolian sands deposited at 20-25 ka are interbedded with loess south of the Sand Hills. Several of the large dunes sampled in the Sand Hills clearly contain a substantial core of Late Pleistocene sand; thus, they had developed by the Late Pleistocene and were fully mobile at that time, although substantial sand deposition and extensive longitudinal dune construction occurred during the Holocene. Many of the Late Pleistocene OSL ages fall between 17 and 14 ka, but it is likely that these ages represent only the later part of a longer period of dune construction and migration. At several sites, significant Late Pleistocene or Holocene large-dune migration also probably occurred after the time represented by the Pleistocene OSL ages. Sedimentary structures in Late Pleistocene eolian sand and the forms of large dunes potentially constructed in the Late Pleistocene both indicate sand transport dominated by northerly to westerly winds, consistent with Late Pleistocene loess transport directions. Numerical modeling of the climate of the Last Glacial Maximum has often yielded mean monthly surface winds southwest of the Laurentide Ice Sheet that are consistent with this geologic evidence, despite strengthened anticyclonic circulation over the ice sheet. Mobility of large dunes during the Late Pleistocene on the central Great Plains may have been the result of

  14. Revision of the early Middle Pleistocene bears (Ursidae, Mammalia) of Central Europe, with special respect to possible co-occurrence of spelaeoid and arctoid lineages

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Wagner, J.; Čermák, Stanislav

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 87, č. 3 (2012), s. 461-496 ISSN 1214-1119 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : Ursus deningeri * U. arctos, * Late Biharian * Early Toringian * Middle Pleistocene Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 1.141, year: 2012 http://www.geology.cz/bulletin/fulltext/1354_Wagner.pdf

  15. The lithic industry of Sima del Elefante (Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain) in the context of Early and Middle Pleistocene technology in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Lombera-Hermida, Arturo; Bargalló, Amèlia; Terradillos-Bernal, Marcos; Huguet, Rosa; Vallverdú, Josep; García-Antón, Maria-Dolores; Mosquera, Marina; Ollé, Andreu; Sala, Robert; Carbonell, Eudald; Rodríguez-Álvarez, Xosé-Pedro

    2015-05-01

    This paper presents the lithic assemblages documented at Sima del Elefante (TE) and their importance in the context of the Early and Middle Pleistocene human occupation of Europe. We also study changes in human behaviour within the context of the palaeoenvironmental evolution of the Sierra de Atapuerca. This site has characteristics that are of great value for the study of human evolution. The lower levels of TE (Units TE7-TE14) are an essential reference for understanding the early stages of the colonization of Europe. The TE9c level has provided stone tools (Mode 1), faunal remains, and human fossils dated to 1.22 Ma (millions of years ago). Moreover, this is one of the few European sites with a stratigraphic sequence that includes remains of human occupations predating the Jaramillo subchron (Early Pleistocene) and from the Late Middle Pleistocene (Units TE18-TE19). Despite this, the presence of archaeologically sterile units (TE15-17) prevents us from establishing a continuous relationship between the Early and Middle Pleistocene human settlements and, consequently, between their technological and behavioural differences. We can, however compare the technological and palaeoeconomic strategies adopted by different species of hominins during two key phases of the occupation of Europe. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Systematics and paleobiogeography of .i.Sardolagus obscurus./i. n. gen. n. sp. (Leporidae, Lagomorpha) from the early Pleistocene of Sardinia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Angelone, Ch.; Čermák, Stanislav; Moncunill-Solé, B.; Quintana, J.; Tuveri, C.; Arca, M.; Kotsakis, T.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 92, č. 3 (2018) ISSN 0022-3360 Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : Sardolagus obscurus n. gen. n. sp. * Leporidae * early Pleistocene * Sardinia * systematics Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy OBOR OECD: Paleontology Impact factor: 1.591, year: 2016

  17. A reassessment of the early archaeological record at Leang Burung 2, a Late Pleistocene rock-shelter site on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brumm, Adam; Hakim, Budianto; Ramli, Muhammad; Aubert, Maxime; van den Bergh, Gerrit D.; Li, Bo; Burhan, Basran; Saiful, Andi Muhammad; Siagian, Linda; Sardi, Ratno; Jusdi, Andi; Said, Abdullah; Mubarak, Andi Pampang; Moore, Mark W.; Roberts, Richard G.; Zhao, Jian-xin; McGahan, David; Jones, Brian G.; Perston, Yinika; Szabó, Katherine; Mahmud, M. Irfan; Westaway, Kira; [Unknown], Jatmiko; Saptomo, E. Wahyu; van der Kaars, Sander; Grün, Rainer; Wood, Rachel; Dodson, John; Morwood, Michael J.

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents a reassessment of the archaeological record at Leang Burung 2, a key early human occupation site in the Late Pleistocene of Southeast Asia. Excavated originally by Ian Glover in 1975, this limestone rock-shelter in the Maros karsts of Sulawesi, Indonesia, has long held

  18. Brain size and encephalization in early to Mid-Pleistocene Homo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rightmire, G Philip

    2004-06-01

    Important changes in the brain have occurred during the course of human evolution. Both absolute and relative size increases can be documented for species of Homo, culminating in the appearance of modern humans. One species that is particularly well-represented by fossil crania is Homo erectus. The mean capacity for 30 individuals is 973 cm(3). Within this group there is substantial variation, but brain size increases slightly in specimens from later time periods. Other Middle Pleistocene crania differ from those of Homo erectus. Characters of the facial skeleton, vault, and cranial base suggest that fossils from sites such as Arago Cave in France, the Sima de los Huesos in Spain, Bodo in Ethiopia, Broken Hill in Zambia, and perhaps Dali in China belong to the taxon Homo heidelbergensis. Ten of these mid-Quaternary hominins have brains averaging 1,206 cm(3) in volume, and many fall beyond the limits of size predicted for Homo erectus of equivalent age. When orbit height is used to construct an index of relative brain size, it is apparent that the (significant) increase in volume documented for the Middle Pleistocene individuals is not simply a consequence of larger body mass. Encephalization quotient values confirm this finding. These changes in absolute and relative brain size can be taken as further corroborative evidence for a speciation event, in which Homo erectus produced a daughter lineage. It is probable that Homo heidelbergensis originated in Africa or western Eurasia and then ranged widely across the Old World. Archaeological traces indicate that these populations differed in their technology and behavior from earlier hominins. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Frost for the trees: Did climate increase erosion in unglaciated landscapes during the late Pleistocene?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Jill A; Roering, Joshua J; Bartlein, Patrick J; Gavin, Daniel G; Granger, Darryl E; Rempel, Alan W; Praskievicz, Sarah J; Hales, Tristram C

    2015-11-01

    Understanding climatic influences on the rates and mechanisms of landscape erosion is an unresolved problem in Earth science that is important for quantifying soil formation rates, sediment and solute fluxes to oceans, and atmospheric CO2 regulation by silicate weathering. Glaciated landscapes record the erosional legacy of glacial intervals through moraine deposits and U-shaped valleys, whereas more widespread unglaciated hillslopes and rivers lack obvious climate signatures, hampering mechanistic theory for how climate sets fluxes and form. Today, periglacial processes in high-elevation settings promote vigorous bedrock-to-regolith conversion and regolith transport, but the extent to which frost processes shaped vast swaths of low- to moderate-elevation terrain during past climate regimes is not well established. By combining a mechanistic frost weathering model with a regional Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) climate reconstruction derived from a paleo-Earth System Model, paleovegetation data, and a paleoerosion archive, we propose that frost-driven sediment production was pervasive during the LGM in our unglaciated Pacific Northwest study site, coincident with a 2.5 times increase in erosion relative to modern rates. Our findings provide a novel framework to quantify how climate modulates sediment production over glacial-interglacial cycles in mid-latitude unglaciated terrain.

  20. Late Pleistocene climate change and the global expansion of anatomically modern humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eriksson, Anders; Betti, Lia; Friend, Andrew D.; Lycett, Stephen J.; Singarayer, Joy S.; von Cramon-Taubadel, Noreen; Valdes, Paul J.; Balloux, Francois; Manica, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    The extent to which past climate change has dictated the pattern and timing of the out-of-Africa expansion by anatomically modern humans is currently unclear [Stewart JR, Stringer CB (2012) Science 335:1317–1321]. In particular, the incompleteness of the fossil record makes it difficult to quantify the effect of climate. Here, we take a different approach to this problem; rather than relying on the appearance of fossils or archaeological evidence to determine arrival times in different parts of the world, we use patterns of genetic variation in modern human populations to determine the plausibility of past demographic parameters. We develop a spatially explicit model of the expansion of anatomically modern humans and use climate reconstructions over the past 120 ky based on the Hadley Centre global climate model HadCM3 to quantify the possible effects of climate on human demography. The combinations of demographic parameters compatible with the current genetic makeup of worldwide populations indicate a clear effect of climate on past population densities. Our estimates of this effect, based on population genetics, capture the observed relationship between current climate and population density in modern hunter–gatherers worldwide, providing supporting evidence for the realism of our approach. Furthermore, although we did not use any archaeological and anthropological data to inform the model, the arrival times in different continents predicted by our model are also broadly consistent with the fossil and archaeological records. Our framework provides the most accurate spatiotemporal reconstruction of human demographic history available at present and will allow for a greater integration of genetic and archaeological evidence. PMID:22988099

  1. Extent, timing, and climatic significance of latest Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation in the Sierra Nevada, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clark, Douglas Howe [Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States)

    1995-01-01

    Despite more than a century of study, scant attention has been paid to the glacial record in the northern end of the Sierra Nevada, and to the smaller moraines deposited after the retreat of the Tioga (last glacial maximum) glaciers. Equilibrium-line altitude (ELA) estimates of the ice fields indicate that the Tioga ELA gradients there are consistent with similar estimates for the southern half of the range, and with an intensification of the modern temperature/precipitation pattern in the region. The Recess Peak advance has traditionally been considered to be mid-Neoglacial age, about 2--3,000 yr B.P., on the basis of relative weathering estimates. Sediment cores of lakes dammed behind moraines correlative with Recess Peak in four widely spaced sites yields a series of high-resolution AMS radiocarbon dates which demonstrate that Recess Peak glaciers retreated before ~13,100 cal yr B.P.. This minimum limiting age indicates that the advance predates the North Atlantic Younger Dryas cooling. It also implies that there have been no advances larger than the Matthes in the roughly 12,000 year interval between it and the Recess Peak advance. This finding casts doubt on several recent studies that claim Younger Dryas glacier advances in western North America. The 13,100 cal yr B.P. date is also a minimum age for deglaciation of the sample sites used to calibrate the in situ production rates of cosmogenic 10Be and 26Al. The discrepancy between this age and the 11,000 cal yr B.P. exposure age assumed in the original calibration introduces a large (> 19%) potential error in late-Pleistocene exposure ages calculated using these production rates.

  2. Effects of climatic and geological processes during the pleistocene on the evolutionary history of the northern cavefish, Amblyopsis spelaea (teleostei: amblyopsidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemiller, Matthew L; McCandless, James R; Reynolds, R Graham; Caddle, James; Near, Thomas J; Tillquist, Christopher R; Pearson, William D; Fitzpatrick, Benjamin M

    2013-04-01

    Climatic and geological processes associated with glaciation cycles during the Pleistocene have been implicated in influencing patterns of genetic variation and promoting speciation of temperate flora and fauna. However, determining the factors promoting divergence and speciation is often difficult in many groups because of our limited understanding of potential vicariant barriers and connectivity between populations. Pleistocene glacial cycles are thought to have significantly influenced the distribution and diversity of subterranean invertebrates; however, impacts on subterranean aquatic vertebrates are less clear. We employed several hypothesis-driven approaches to assess the impacts of Pleistocene climatic and geological changes on the Northern Cavefish, Amblyopsis spelaea, whose current distribution occurs near the southern extent of glacial advances in North America. Our results show that the modern Ohio River has been a significant barrier to dispersal and is correlated with patterns of genetic divergence. We infer that populations were isolated in two refugia located north and south of the Ohio River during the most recent two glacial cycles with evidence of demographic expansion in the northern isolate. Finally, we conclude that climatic and geological processes have resulted in the formation of cryptic forms and advocate recognition of two distinct phylogenetic lineages currently recognized as A. spelaea. © 2012 The Author(s). Evolution© 2012 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  3. Pleistocene climatic oscillations rather than recent human disturbance influence genetic diversity in one of the world's highest treeline species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Yanling; Lachmuth, Susanne; Gallegos, Silvia C; Kessler, Michael; Ramsay, Paul M; Renison, Daniel; Suarez, Ricardo; Hensen, Isabell

    2015-10-01

    Biological responses to climatic change usually leave imprints on the genetic diversity and structure of plants. Information on the current genetic diversity and structure of dominant tree species has facilitated our general understanding of phylogeographical patterns. Using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLPs), we compared genetic diversity and structure of 384 adults of P. tarapacana with those of 384 seedlings across 32 forest sites spanning a latitudinal gradient of 600 km occurring between 4100 m and 5000 m a.s.l. in Polylepis tarapacana (Rosaceae), one of the world's highest treeline species endemic to the central Andes. Moderate to high levels of genetic diversity and low genetic differentiation were detected in both adults and seedlings, with levels of genetic diversity and differentiation being almost identical. Four slightly genetically divergent clusters were identified that accorded to differing geographical regions. Genetic diversity decreased from south to north and with increasing precipitation for adults and seedlings, but there was no relationship to elevation. Our study shows that, unlike the case for other Andean treeline species, recent human activities have not affected the genetic structure of P. tarapacana, possibly because its inhospitable habitat is unsuitable for agriculture. The current genetic pattern of P. tarapacana points to a historically more widespread distribution at lower altitudes, which allowed considerable gene flow possibly during the glacial periods of the Pleistocene epoch, and also suggests that the northern Argentinean Andes may have served as a refugium for historical populations. © 2015 Botanical Society of America.

  4. Simple technologies and diverse food strategies of the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene at Huaca Prieta, Coastal Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dillehay, Tom D; Goodbred, Steve; Pino, Mario; Vásquez Sánchez, Víctor F; Tham, Teresa Rosales; Adovasio, James; Collins, Michael B; Netherly, Patricia J; Hastorf, Christine A; Chiou, Katherine L; Piperno, Dolores; Rey, Isabel; Velchoff, Nancy

    2017-05-01

    Simple pebble tools, ephemeral cultural features, and the remains of maritime and terrestrial foods are present in undisturbed Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene deposits underneath a large human-made mound at Huaca Prieta and nearby sites on the Pacific coast of northern Peru. Radiocarbon ages indicate an intermittent human presence dated between ~15,000 and 8000 calendar years ago before the mound was built. The absence of fishhooks, harpoons, and bifacial stone tools suggests that technologies of gathering, trapping, clubbing, and exchange were used primarily to procure food resources along the shoreline and in estuarine wetlands and distant mountains. The stone artifacts are minimally worked unifacial stone tools characteristic of several areas of South America. Remains of avocado, bean, and possibly cultivated squash and chile pepper are also present, suggesting human transport and consumption. Our new findings emphasize an early coastal lifeway of diverse food procurement strategies that suggest detailed observation of resource availability in multiple environments and a knowledgeable economic organization, although technologies were simple and campsites were seemingly ephemeral and discontinuous. These findings raise questions about the pace of early human movement along some areas of the Pacific coast and the level of knowledge and technology required to exploit maritime and inland resources.

  5. Pedogenic carbonate stable isotopic evidence for wooded habitat preference of early Pleistocene tool makers in the Turkana Basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, Rhonda L; Lepre, Christopher J; Feibel, Craig S; Wright, James D; Mortlock, Richard A; Harmand, Sonia; Brugal, Jean-Philip; Roche, Hélène

    2013-07-01

    The origin and evolution of early Pleistocene hominin lithic technologies in Africa occurred within the context of savanna grassland ecosystems. The Nachukui Formation of the Turkana Basin in northern Kenya, containing Oldowan and Acheulean tool assemblages and fossil evidence for early members of Homo and Paranthropus, provides an extensive spatial and temporal paleosol record of early Pleistocene savanna flora. Here we present new carbon isotopic (δ(13)CVPDB) values of pedogenic carbonates (68 nodules, 193 analyses) from the Nachukui Formation in order to characterize past vegetation structure and change through time. We compared three members (Kalochoro, Kaitio, and Natoo) at five locations spanning 2.4-1.4Ma and sampled in proximity to hominin archaeological and paleontological sites. Our results indicate diverse habitats showing a mosaic pattern of vegetation cover at each location yet demonstrate grassland expansion through time influenced by paleogeography. Kalochoro floodplains occurred adjacent to large river systems, and paleosols show evidence of C3 woodlands averaging 46-50% woody cover. Kaitio habitats were located along smaller rivers and lake margins. Paleosols yielded evidence for reduced portions of woody vegetation averaging 34-37% woody cover. Natoo environments had the highest percentage of grasslands averaging 21% woody cover near a diminishing Lake Turkana precursor. We also compared paleosol δ(13)CVPDB values of lithic archaeological sites with paleosol δ(13)CVPDB values of all environments available to hominins at 2.4-1.4Ma in the Nachukui and Koobi Fora Formations. Grassy environments became more widespread during this interval; woody canopy cover mean percentages steadily decreased by 12%. However, significantly more wooded savanna habitats were present in the vicinity of lithic archaeological sites and did not mirror the basin-wide trend of grassland spread. Hominin lithic archaeological sites consistently demonstrated woody cover

  6. Early warning of climate tipping points

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenton, Timothy M.

    2011-07-01

    A climate 'tipping point' occurs when a small change in forcing triggers a strongly nonlinear response in the internal dynamics of part of the climate system, qualitatively changing its future state. Human-induced climate change could push several large-scale 'tipping elements' past a tipping point. Candidates include irreversible melt of the Greenland ice sheet, dieback of the Amazon rainforest and shift of the West African monsoon. Recent assessments give an increased probability of future tipping events, and the corresponding impacts are estimated to be large, making them significant risks. Recent work shows that early warning of an approaching climate tipping point is possible in principle, and could have considerable value in reducing the risk that they pose.

  7. Climate Proxy Signals in the Plio-Pleistocene Chemeron and Miocene Lukeino Formations, Baringo Basin, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deino, A. L.; Kingston, J.; Hill, A.; Wilson, K. E.; Edgar, R.; Goble, E.

    2009-12-01

    The Chemeron Formation is a hominin-bearing, highly fossiliferous sequence of dominantly alluvial fan and fluvial sedimentary rocks, with climatically significant lacustrine intercalations, exposed within the Tugen Hills of the central Kenya Rift. As we have previously documented (Deino et al., 2006; Kingston et al., 2007), the formation contains a sequence of five 3-7 m thick diatomites in the interval 2.7-2.5 Ma that record, at precessional intervals, the repeated occurrence of deep-lake conditions in the Baringo Basin. These lakes appear abruptly, persist for only about 8,000 years of the ~23,000 year precessional cycle, and recede quickly. The oscillations have been tied to marine core and Mediterranean sapropel sections based on high-precision 40Ar/39Ar dating of K-feldspar in tuffs interspersed through the sequence, and paleomagnetic reversal stratigraphy. Ongoing paleontological investigations in the Tugen Hills are addressing the dynamics of high-resolution faunal and ecological change directly related to the fluctuating climatic background, including its effect on hominin evolution. This specific interval in the Baringo Basin/Tugen Hills has been identified by the Hominid Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project Steering Committee as one of five target areas in East Africa for high-resolution coring studies. The drilling project is currently moving forward to the funding agency proposal development phase. Further exploration in the Tugen Hills has revealed a similar, older sequence of rhythmic alternating diatomites and non-lacustrine sediments in nearby drainages. These beds may represent a precessionally driven climate response possibly associated with the next older orbital eccentricity maximum from ~3.2-2.9 Ma. Characterization of the lithostratigraphy of this area is in progress, and samples of intercalated tuff beds suitable for high-precision single-crystal 40Ar/39Ar dating have been acquired. We have also extended our search for climate proxy records

  8. Equatorial Pacific peak in biological production regulated by nutrient and upwelling during the late Pliocene/early Pleistocene cooling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Etourneau

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The largest increase in export production in the eastern Pacific of the last 5.3 Myr (million years occurred between 2.2 and 1.6 Myr, a time of major climatic and oceanographic reorganization in the region. Here, we investigate the causes of this event using reconstructions of export production, nutrient supply and oceanic conditions across the Pliocene–Pleistocene in the eastern equatorial Pacific (EEP for the last 3.2 Myr. Our results indicate that the export production peak corresponds to a cold interval marked by high nutrient supply relative to consumption, as revealed by the low bulk sedimentary 15N/14N (δ15N and alkenone-derived sea surface temperature (SST values. This ∼0.6 million year long episode of enhanced delivery of nutrients to the surface of the EEP was predominantly initiated through the upwelling of nutrient-enriched water sourced in high latitudes. In addition, this phenomenon was likely promoted by the regional intensification of upwelling in response to the development of intense Walker and Hadley atmospheric circulations. Increased nutrient consumption in the polar oceans and enhanced denitrification in the equatorial regions restrained nutrient supply and availability and terminated the high export production event.

  9. Dinoflagellate cysts and the paleoenvironment of Late-Pliocene early-pleistocene deposits of Brittany, Northwest France

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morzadec-Kerfourn, Marie Thérèse

    The marine Pliocene facies of the Redon clay is widely distributed in the western part of Brittany. the decrease in the abundance of Tertiary pollen towards the top of the deposits, coupled with the increase of pollen of boreal forest taxa and the development of Ericaceae and Poaceae indicates a Late-Pliocene age. The occurrence of the transgression maximum is recorded in calcareous beds which contain the highest concentration of microforaminiferal linings and dinoflagellate cysts. Hystrichokolpoma rigaudae and Melitasphaeridium choanophorum, along with Achomosphaera andalousiensis and Operculodinium israelianum make up these aseemblages. The presence of dinoflagellate cyst assemblages with estuarine and neritic affinities but with an occasional oceanic form, indicates sedimentation in coastal waters with a neritic influence. The paleotopography exerts a control on the altitudinal distribution of the Redon clays in the western part of Brittany to the west of the Rennes Basin. The Pliocene-Pleistocene dinoflagelate cyst assemblages of southern England and northwestern france show a remarkable degree of homogeneity in their composition, chiefly expressed in the apparent contradictory association of A. andalousensis and O. israelianum that suggest sedimentation in an unusual type of environment which arose in the context of climatic change and sea-level variations at that time.

  10. A leaf wax biomarker record of early Pleistocene hydroclimate from West Turkana, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupien, R. L.; Russell, J. M.; Feibel, C.; Beck, C.; Castañeda, I.; Deino, A.; Cohen, A. S.

    2018-04-01

    Climate is thought to play a critical role in human evolution; however, this hypothesis is difficult to test due to a lack of long, high-quality paleoclimate records from key hominin fossil locales. To address this issue, we analyzed organic geochemical indicators of climate in a drill core from West Turkana, Kenya that spans ∼1.9-1.4 Ma, an interval that includes several important hominin evolutionary transitions. We analyzed the hydrogen isotopic composition of terrestrial plant waxes (δDwax) to reconstruct orbital-timescale changes in regional hydrology and their relationship with global climate forcings and the hominin fossil record. Our data indicate little change in the long-term mean hydroclimate during this interval, in contrast to inferred changes in the level of Lake Turkana, suggesting that lake level may be responding dominantly to deltaic progradation or tectonically-driven changes in basin configuration as opposed to hydroclimate. Time-series spectral analyses of the isotopic data reveal strong precession-band (21 kyr) periodicity, indicating that regional hydroclimate was strongly affected by changes in insolation. We observe an interval of particularly high-amplitude hydrologic variation at ∼1.7 Ma, which occurs during a time of high orbital eccentricity hence large changes in processionally-driven insolation amplitude. This interval overlaps with multiple hominin species turnovers, the appearance of new stone tool technology, and hominin dispersal out of Africa, supporting the notion that climate variability played an important role in hominin evolution.

  11. Environment and Climate of Early Human Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Naomi E.

    2015-05-01

    Evaluating the relationships between climate, the environment, and human traits is a key part of human origins research because changes in Earth's atmosphere, oceans, landscapes, and ecosystems over the past 10 Myr shaped the selection pressures experienced by early humans. In Africa, these relationships have been influenced by a combination of high-latitude ice distributions, sea surface temperatures, and low-latitude orbital forcing that resulted in large oscillations in vegetation and moisture availability that were modulated by local basin dynamics. The importance of both climate and tectonics in shaping African landscapes means that integrated views of the ecological, environmental, and tectonic histories of a region are necessary in order to understand the relationships between climate and human evolution.

  12. Two Late Pleistocene climate-driven incision/aggradation rhythms in the middle Dnieper River basin, west-central Russian Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panin, Andrei; Adamiec, Grzegorz; Buylaert, Jan-Pieter; Matlakhova, Ekaterina; Moska, Piotr; Novenko, Elena

    2017-06-01

    In valleys of the River Seim and its tributaries in the middle Dnieper basin (west-central Russian Plain), two low terraces (T1, 10-16 m, and T0, 5-7 m above the river) and a floodplain (2-4 m) with characteristic large and small palaeochannels exist. A range of field and laboratory techniques was applied and ∼30 new numerical ages (OSL and 14C dates) were obtained to establish a chronology of incision and aggradation events that resulted in the current valley morphology. Two full incision/aggradation rhythms and one additional aggradation phase from the previous rhythm were recognized in the Late Pleistocene - Holocene climate cycle. The following events were detected. (1) Late MIS 5 - early MIS 4: aggradation of Terrace T1 following the deep incision at the end of MIS 6. (2) Late MIS 4 (40-30 ka): incision into Terrace T1 below the present-day river, formation of the main scarp in the bottom of the valley between Terrace T1 and Terrace T0/Floodplain levels. (3) MIS 2: aggradation of Terrace T0, lateral migrations of a shallow braided channel located few meters above the present-day river since ∼25 ka through the LGM. (4) 18-13 ka: incision into Terrace T0 below the modern river. Multiple-thread channels concentrated in a single flow that at some places formed large meanders. In the period 15-13 ka, high floods that rose above the present-day floods left large levees and overbank loams on Terrace T0. (5) Younger Dryas - Holocene transition: aggradation up to the modern channel level, transformation of large Late Glacial to small Holocene meanders. The established incision/aggradation rhythms are believed to be manifested over the Central Russian Plain outside the influence of ice sheets in the north and base level changes in the south. The two-phase deepening of the valley occurred in the last quarter of the last glacial epoch but can not be attributed directly to the glacial-interglacial transition. Both the detected incision events correspond to relatively

  13. Before the Emergence of Homo sapiens: Overview on the Early-to-Middle Pleistocene Fossil Record (with a Proposal about Homo heidelbergensis at the subspecific level)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzi, Giorgio

    2011-01-01

    The origin of H. sapiens has deep roots, which include two crucial nodes: (1) the emergence and diffusion of the last common ancestor of later Homo (in the Early Pleistocene) and (2) the tempo and mode of the appearance of distinct evolutionary lineages (in the Middle Pleistocene). The window between 1,000 and 500 thousand years before present appears of crucial importance, including the generation of a new and more encephalised kind of humanity, referred to by many authors as H. heidelbergensis. This species greatly diversified during the Middle Pleistocene up to the formation of new variants (i.e., incipient species) that, eventually, led to the allopatric speciation of H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens. The special case furnished by the calvarium found near Ceprano (Italy), dated to 430–385 ka, offers the opportunity to investigate this matter from an original perspective. It is proposed to separate the hypodigm of a single, widespread, and polymorphic human taxon of the Middle Pleistocene into distinct subspecies (i.e., incipient species). The ancestral one should be H. heidelbergensis, including specimens such as Ceprano and the mandible from Mauer. PMID:21716742

  14. New ESR/U-series data for the early Middle Pleistocene site of Isernia la Pineta, Italy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shao Qingfeng; Bahain, Jean-Jacques; Falgueres, Christophe; Peretto, Carlo; Arzarello, Marta; Minelli, Antonella; Thun Hohenstein, Ursula; Dolo, Jean-Michel; Garcia, Tristan; Frank, Norbert; Douville, Eric

    2011-01-01

    Located in Southern Italy, the Early Palaeolithic site of Isernia la Pineta has provided numerous palaeontological remains and artefacts in well-defined fluvio-lacustrine sequence. The normal magnetization of the main archaeological layer t3a and 39 Ar/ 40 Ar date of 610 ± 10 (2σ) ka, obtained from the immediately overlaying geological level, put the Isernia assemblage in the first part of the Middle Pleistocene. Previous ESR/U-series analyses of Isernia fossil teeth have displayed both recent U-uptake and severe underestimation of the ESR/U-series dates in comparison with the 39 Ar/ 40 Ar age. In order to identify the cause of this age underestimation, new analyses were realized in the present study on four bovid teeth directly recovered from the archaeological surface t3a. The ESR/U-series dates obtained were once again strongly underestimated, with an error weighted mean age of 435 ± 24 (1σ) ka. These too young dates could be associated to a change of the environmental γ-dose rate during the geological history of the Isernia site, related to the revealed recent U-uptake into the palaeontological remains of the archaeological level. If we consider that this dose rate change was coeval with a wet interglacial period and taking the 39 Ar/ 40 Ar age as geochronological reference, simulations with two dose rate steps indicate that this change could be correlated with marine isotopic stage 7 (MIS 7).

  15. New ESR/U-series data for the early Middle Pleistocene site of Isernia la Pineta, Italy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shao Qingfeng, E-mail: shao@mnhn.fr [Departement de Prehistoire du Museum National d' Histoire Naturelle, UMR 7194 CNRS, 1 rue Rene Panhard, F-75013 Paris (France); Bahain, Jean-Jacques; Falgueres, Christophe [Departement de Prehistoire du Museum National d' Histoire Naturelle, UMR 7194 CNRS, 1 rue Rene Panhard, F-75013 Paris (France); Peretto, Carlo; Arzarello, Marta; Minelli, Antonella; Thun Hohenstein, Ursula [Dipartimento di Biologia ed Evoluzione, Universita di Ferrara, C.so Ercole I d' Este 32, I-44121 Ferrara (Italy); Dolo, Jean-Michel; Garcia, Tristan [CEA, LIST, Laboratoire National Henri Becquerel, F-91191 Gif-sur-Yvette cedex (France); Frank, Norbert; Douville, Eric [Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l' Environnement, LSCE/IPSL, UMR 8212 CNRS-CEA-UVSQ, Domaine du CNRS, F-91198 Gif/Yvette cedex (France)

    2011-09-15

    Located in Southern Italy, the Early Palaeolithic site of Isernia la Pineta has provided numerous palaeontological remains and artefacts in well-defined fluvio-lacustrine sequence. The normal magnetization of the main archaeological layer t3a and {sup 39}Ar/{sup 40}Ar date of 610 {+-} 10 (2{sigma}) ka, obtained from the immediately overlaying geological level, put the Isernia assemblage in the first part of the Middle Pleistocene. Previous ESR/U-series analyses of Isernia fossil teeth have displayed both recent U-uptake and severe underestimation of the ESR/U-series dates in comparison with the {sup 39}Ar/{sup 40}Ar age. In order to identify the cause of this age underestimation, new analyses were realized in the present study on four bovid teeth directly recovered from the archaeological surface t3a. The ESR/U-series dates obtained were once again strongly underestimated, with an error weighted mean age of 435 {+-} 24 (1{sigma}) ka. These too young dates could be associated to a change of the environmental {gamma}-dose rate during the geological history of the Isernia site, related to the revealed recent U-uptake into the palaeontological remains of the archaeological level. If we consider that this dose rate change was coeval with a wet interglacial period and taking the {sup 39}Ar/{sup 40}Ar age as geochronological reference, simulations with two dose rate steps indicate that this change could be correlated with marine isotopic stage 7 (MIS 7).

  16. The early and middle Pleistocene archaeological record of Greece : current status and future prospects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tourloukis, Vangelis

    2010-01-01

    By applying a fieldwork-based, geoarchaeological approach, Tourloukis examines in this study the evidence from Greece within the framework of the earliest occupation of Europe. Although the Greek Peninsula lies within a core area of early hominin movements between Africa and Europe but also within

  17. A new record of late Pliocene-early Pleistocene aeolian loess-red clay deposits from the western Chinese Loess Plateau and its palaeoenvironmental implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zan, Jinbo; Fang, Xiaomin; Zhang, Weilin; Yan, Maodu; Zhang, Dawen

    2018-04-01

    The loess-red clay sequences in northern China provide high-resolution terrestrial records of Asian monsoon evolution and aridification of the Asian interior. To date, however, aeolian deposits of late Pliocene-early Pleistocene age (3.5-2.4 Ma) have only rarely been reported from the western Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP), which significantly hinders our understanding of the distribution of aeolian deposits and the palaeoenvironmental evolution of the region. Here, we present magnetostratigraphic, lithologic and magnetic susceptibility results for two recently-drilled boreholes from the north bank of Baxie River, central Linxia Basin, which are highly correlative with those of the loess-red clay deposits spanning the interval from 3.6 to 2.4 Ma in the eastern CLP. Our results provide the first direct evidence for the occurrence of late Pliocene-early Pleistocene aeolian deposits in the western CLP and provide new insights into the distribution of aeolian deposits in northern China. The spatial coherence of the magnetic susceptibility fluctuations further indicates that magnetic susceptibility is a powerful tool for stratigraphic correlation of late Pliocene aeolian deposits in the western CLP. In addition, our results demonstrate that erosional events may have occurred in the early or middle Pleistocene, and they may provide new insights into the reasons for the absence of loess-red clay deposits from 3.5 to 2.4 Ma in most parts of the western CLP.

  18. Pleistocene Palaeoart of Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert G. Bednarik

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available This comprehensive overview considers the currently known Pleistocene palaeoart of Asia on a common basis, which suggests that the available data are entirely inadequate to form any cohesive synthesis about this corpus. In comparison to the attention lavished on the corresponding record available from Eurasia’s small western appendage, Europe, it is evident that Pleistocene palaeoart from the rest of the world has been severely neglected. Southern Asia, in particular, holds great promise for the study of early cognitive development of hominins, and yet this potential has remained almost entirely unexplored. Asia is suggested to be the key continent in any global synthesis of ‘art’ origins, emphasising the need for a comprehensive pan-continental research program. This is not just to counter-balance the incredible imbalance in favour of Europe, but to examine the topic of Middle Pleistocene palaeoart development effectively.

  19. A reassessment of the early archaeological record at Leang Burung 2, a Late Pleistocene rock-shelter site on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hakim, Budianto; Ramli, Muhammad; Aubert, Maxime; van den Bergh, Gerrit D.; Li, Bo; Burhan, Basran; Saiful, Andi Muhammad; Siagian, Linda; Sardi, Ratno; Jusdi, Andi; Abdullah; Mubarak, Andi Pampang; Moore, Mark W.; Roberts, Richard G.; Zhao, Jian-xin; McGahan, David; Jones, Brian G.; Perston, Yinika; Szabó, Katherine; Mahmud, M. Irfan; Westaway, Kira; Jatmiko; Saptomo, E. Wahyu; van der Kaars, Sander; Grün, Rainer; Wood, Rachel; Dodson, John

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents a reassessment of the archaeological record at Leang Burung 2, a key early human occupation site in the Late Pleistocene of Southeast Asia. Excavated originally by Ian Glover in 1975, this limestone rock-shelter in the Maros karsts of Sulawesi, Indonesia, has long held significance in our understanding of early human dispersals into ‘Wallacea’, the vast zone of oceanic islands between continental Asia and Australia. We present new stratigraphic information and dating evidence from Leang Burung 2 collected during the course of our excavations at this site in 2007 and 2011–13. Our findings suggest that the classic Late Pleistocene modern human occupation sequence identified previously at Leang Burung 2, and proposed to span around 31,000 to 19,000 conventional 14C years BP (~35–24 ka cal BP), may actually represent an amalgam of reworked archaeological materials. Sources for cultural materials of mixed ages comprise breccias from the rear wall of the rock-shelter–remnants of older, eroded deposits dated to 35–23 ka cal BP–and cultural remains of early Holocene antiquity. Below the upper levels affected by the mass loss of Late Pleistocene deposits, our deep-trench excavations uncovered evidence for an earlier hominin presence at the site. These findings include fossils of now-extinct proboscideans and other ‘megafauna’ in stratified context, as well as a cobble-based stone artifact technology comparable to that produced by late Middle Pleistocene hominins elsewhere on Sulawesi. PMID:29641524

  20. The challenge of dating Early Pleistocene fossil teeth by the combined uranium series-electron spin resonance method: the Venta Micena palaeontological site (Orce, Spain)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duval, M.; Falgueres, Ch.; Bahain, J.J.; Shao, Q.; Grun, R.; Aubert, M.; Hellstrom, J.; Dolo, J.M.; Agusti, J.; Martinez-Navarro, B.; Palmqvist, P.; Toro-Moyano, I.

    2011-01-01

    The palaeontological site of Venta Micena (Orce, Andalusia, Spain) lies in the eastern sector of the Guadix-Baza basin, one of the best documented areas in Europe for Plio-Pleistocene bio-stratigraphy. The combination of bio-chronological and palaeo-magnetic results, combined with the radiometric data obtained for Atapuerca Sima del Elefante, indicated that the Venta Micena stratum was formed between the Jaramillo and Olduvai palaeo-magnetic events, most likely between 1.22 and 1.77 Ma. Five fossil teeth from two outcrops (sites A and B) were selected to assess the potential of combined uranium series-electron spin resonance (US-ESR) dating of Early Pleistocene sites. Although the US-ESR results of the first outcrop showed a large scatter between the three teeth, the mean age of 1.37 ± 0.24 Ma can be considered a reasonable age estimate for Venta Micena. The mean ESR age of 0.62 ± 0.03 Ma obtained for site B seems to be a severe underestimation when compared with the independent age control. This underestimation is attributed to a relative recent U-mobilization event that led to some U-leaching. The results show that any ESR age calculations of old samples are extremely sensitive to variations in the measured 230 Th/ 234 U ratios in dental tissues. Although the results demonstrate that ESR can in principle be applied to Early Pleistocene sites, they also reveal the complexity of dating such old teeth. It is necessary to continue research in several directions, such as study of the behaviour of ESR signals in old teeth and understanding recent U-mobilization processes, to improve the reliability of the combined US-ESR dating method applied to Early Pleistocene times, a period for which the number of available numerical dating techniques is very limited. (authors)

  1. Dama roberti, a new species of deer from the early Middle Pleistocene of Europe, and the origins of modern fallow deer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breda, Marzia; Lister, Adrian M.

    2013-06-01

    The ancestry of the modern fallow deer, Dama dama, has been tentatively traced back to Pliocene/Early Pleistocene forms referred to 'Pseudodama', characterized by unpalmated three- or four-point antlers. By the late Middle Pleistocene, Dama with palmated antlers appears, as Dama dama clactoniana. However, fallow deer from the interim period, the early Middle Pleistocene, are poorly-known. A new specimen from Pakefield (Suffolk, UK), represented by a portion of cranium with a substantial part of both antlers plus a mandible and scapula, is the most complete medium-sized deer specimen from the British early Middle Pleistocene (ca 700 ka). The position and orientation of the basal tine, together with dental characters and mandibular morphology, are typical of fallow deer. The narrow palmation is reminiscent of D. dama clactoniana, but the lack of palmation tines is unique. Moreover, the lack of second (and third) tines in an adult specimen differs from both D. dama dama and D. d. clactoniana, being a primitive character shared with the last representatives of 'Pseudodama' which, on the other hand, has a circular beam lacking any palmation. This combination of features justifies the erection of a new species provisionally placed within the genus Dama, Dama roberti n. sp. Another specimen, from Soleilhac (Auvergne, France), represented by portions of the two antlers, a mandible and a tibia, shares antler morphology with the Pakefield specimen and can be ascribed to the same new species. Isolated antler and dental remains from coeval British sites are tentatively ascribed to D. roberti n. sp. The new species has implications for the ancestry of modern fallow deer.

  2. Climate science and famine early warning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verdin, James; Funk, Chris; Senay, Gabriel; Choularton, Richard

    2005-11-29

    Food security assessment in sub-Saharan Africa requires simultaneous consideration of multiple socio-economic and environmental variables. Early identification of populations at risk enables timely and appropriate action. Since large and widely dispersed populations depend on rainfed agriculture and pastoralism, climate monitoring and forecasting are important inputs to food security analysis. Satellite rainfall estimates (RFE) fill in gaps in station observations, and serve as input to drought index maps and crop water balance models. Gridded rainfall time-series give historical context, and provide a basis for quantitative interpretation of seasonal precipitation forecasts. RFE are also used to characterize flood hazards, in both simple indices and stream flow models. In the future, many African countries are likely to see negative impacts on subsistence agriculture due to the effects of global warming. Increased climate variability is forecast, with more frequent extreme events. Ethiopia requires special attention. Already facing a food security emergency, troubling persistent dryness has been observed in some areas, associated with a positive trend in Indian Ocean sea surface temperatures. Increased African capacity for rainfall observation, forecasting, data management and modelling applications is urgently needed. Managing climate change and increased climate variability require these fundamental technical capacities if creative coping strategies are to be devised.

  3. Pleistocene climate changes shaped the population structure of Partamona seridoensis (Apidae, Meliponini, an endemic stingless bee from the Neotropical dry forest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elder Assis Miranda

    Full Text Available Partamona seridoensis is an endemic stingless bee from the Caatinga, a Neotropical dry forest in northeastern Brazil. Like other stingless bees, this species plays an important ecological role as a pollinator. The aim of the present study was to investigate the genetic structure and evolutionary history of P. seridoensis across its current geographic range. Workers from 84 nests from 17 localities were analyzed for COI and Cytb genic regions. The population structure tests (Bayesian phylogenetic inference, AMOVA and haplotype network consistently characterized two haplogroups (northwestern and eastern, with little gene flow between them, generating a high differentiation between them as well as among the populations within each haplogroup. The Mantel test revealed no isolation by distance. No evidence of a potential geographic barrier in the present that could explain the diversification between the P. seridoensis haplogroups was found. However, Pleistocene climatic changes may explain this differentiation, since the initial time for the P. seridoensis lineages diversification took place during the mid-Pleistocene, specifically the interglacial period, when the biota is presumed to have been more associated with dry conditions and had more restricted, fragmented geographical distribution. This event may have driven diversification by isolating the two haplogroups. Otherwise, the climatic changes in the late Pleistocene must not have drastically affected the population dynamics of P. seridoensis, since the Bayesian Skyline Plot did not reveal any substantial fluctuation in effective population size in either haplogroup. Considering its importance and the fact that it is an endemic bee from a very threatened Neotropical dry forest, the results herein could be useful to the development of conservation strategies for P. seridoensis.

  4. Pleistocene climate changes shaped the population structure of Partamona seridoensis (Apidae, Meliponini), an endemic stingless bee from the Neotropical dry forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Elder Assis; Ferreira, Kátia Maria; Carvalho, Airton Torres; Martins, Celso Feitosa; Fernandes, Carlo Rivero; Del Lama, Marco Antonio

    2017-01-01

    Partamona seridoensis is an endemic stingless bee from the Caatinga, a Neotropical dry forest in northeastern Brazil. Like other stingless bees, this species plays an important ecological role as a pollinator. The aim of the present study was to investigate the genetic structure and evolutionary history of P. seridoensis across its current geographic range. Workers from 84 nests from 17 localities were analyzed for COI and Cytb genic regions. The population structure tests (Bayesian phylogenetic inference, AMOVA and haplotype network) consistently characterized two haplogroups (northwestern and eastern), with little gene flow between them, generating a high differentiation between them as well as among the populations within each haplogroup. The Mantel test revealed no isolation by distance. No evidence of a potential geographic barrier in the present that could explain the diversification between the P. seridoensis haplogroups was found. However, Pleistocene climatic changes may explain this differentiation, since the initial time for the P. seridoensis lineages diversification took place during the mid-Pleistocene, specifically the interglacial period, when the biota is presumed to have been more associated with dry conditions and had more restricted, fragmented geographical distribution. This event may have driven diversification by isolating the two haplogroups. Otherwise, the climatic changes in the late Pleistocene must not have drastically affected the population dynamics of P. seridoensis, since the Bayesian Skyline Plot did not reveal any substantial fluctuation in effective population size in either haplogroup. Considering its importance and the fact that it is an endemic bee from a very threatened Neotropical dry forest, the results herein could be useful to the development of conservation strategies for P. seridoensis.

  5. Shedding light on the Early Pleistocene of TD6 (Gran Dolina, Atapuerca, Spain): The technological sequence and occupational inferences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosquera, Marina; Ollé, Andreu; Rodríguez-Álvarez, Xose Pedro; Carbonell, Eudald

    2018-01-01

    This paper aims to update the information available on the lithic assemblage from the entire sequence of TD6 now that the most recent excavations have been completed, and to explore possible changes in both occupational patterns and technological strategies evidenced in the unit. This is the first study to analyse the entire TD6 sequence, including subunits TD6.3 and TD6.1, which have never been studied, along with the better-known TD6.2 Homo antecessor-bearing subunit. We also present an analysis of several lithic refits found in TD6, as well as certain technical features that may help characterise the hominin occupations. The archaeo-palaeontological record from TD6 consists of 9,452 faunal remains, 443 coprolites, 1,046 lithic pieces, 170 hominin remains and 91 Celtis seeds. The characteristics of this record seem to indicate two main stages of occupation. In the oldest subunit, TD6.3, the lithic assemblage points to the light and limited hominin occupation of the cave, which does, however, grow over the course of the level. In contrast, the lithic assemblages from TD6.2 and TD6.1 are rich and varied, which may reflect Gran Dolina cave's establishment as a landmark in the region. Despite the occupational differences between the lowermost subunit and the rest of the deposit, technologically the TD6 lithic assemblage is extremely homogeneous throughout. In addition, the composition and spatial distribution of the 12 groups of lithic refits found in unit TD6, as well as the in situ nature of the assemblage demonstrate the high degree of preservation at the site. This may help clarify the nature of the Early Pleistocene hominin occupations of TD6, and raise reasonable doubt about the latest interpretations that support the ex situ character of the assemblage as a whole.

  6. Climate and evolution: implications of some extinction patterns in African and European Machairodontine Cats of the Plio-Pleistocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antón, M.

    1998-12-01

    Full Text Available Estudios recientes sobre las correlaciones entre cambios climáticos globales y la evolución de la biota del Plio-Pleistoceno Africano han revelado aparentes discrepancias entre las fechas y la significación de eventos registrados en distintas fuentes. Las diferencias mas notables se refieren a un importante cambio en la proporción de isótopos de oxígeno marinas hace 2,5 millones de años, y a la posibilidad de una transición biótica relacionada causalmente con dicho cambio. Cambios en la vegetación detectados a través de los valores de isótopos estables en los paleosuelos sugieren que el principal cambio hacia una vegetación mas abierta ocurrió mas tarde, hace ∼1,7 millones de años. Nosotros estudiamos el problema refiriendonos en particular a los eventos de hace 1,7 millones de años, y a la extinción en Africa de los félidos con dientes de sable que se produce poco después, puesto que las extinciones de taxones euritópicos como estos probablemente señala cambios significativos en las condiciones ambientales. Nosotros comparamos el patrón de dichas extinciones con los de taxones semejantes 0 idénticos, en Eurasia y América, y sugerimos que en cada caso hay claros indicios de importantes cambios ambientales. Es probable que los cambios en la vegetación de Africa registrados hace ∼1,7 millones de años representen una respuesta en el medio terrestre alas cambios climáticos globales reflejados en el registro marino hace ∼1,9 millones de años.Recent discussions of correlations between global climatic change and evolution of the African Plio-Pleistocene biota have revealed apparent discrepancies between the timing and significance of events recorded in different data sets. The most notable differences have occurred in relation to a major shift in the ratio of marine oxygen isotopes by 2.5 myr and claims for a causally related transition in the biota. Vegetational changes recorded in palaeosol stable isotope

  7. Contrasting population-level responses to Pleistocene climatic oscillations in an alpine bat revealed by complete mitochondrial genomes and evolutionary history inference

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alberdi, Antton; Gilbert, M. Thomas P; Razgour, Orly

    2015-01-01

    Aim: We used an integrative approach to reconstruct the evolutionary history of the alpine long-eared bat, Plecotus macrobullaris, to test whether the variable effects of Pleistocene climatic oscillations across geographical regions led to contrasting population-level demographic histories within...... a single species. Location: The Western Palaearctic. Methods: We sequenced the complete mitochondrial genomes of 57 individuals from across the distribution of the species. The analysis integrated ecological niche modelling (ENM), approximate Bayesian computation (ABC), measures of genetic diversity...... and Bayesian phylogenetic methods. Results: We identified two deep lineages: a western lineage, restricted to the Pyrenees and the Alps, and an eastern lineage, which expanded across the mountain ranges east of the Dinarides (Croatia). ENM projections of past conditions predicted that climatic suitability...

  8. Sensitivity of Photosynthetic Gas Exchange and Growth of Lodgepole Pine to Climate Variability Depends on the Age of Pleistocene Glacial Surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, B.; Chapple, W.; Ewers, B. E.; Williams, D. G.

    2014-12-01

    The interaction between soil conditions and climate variability plays a central role in the ecohydrological functions of montane conifer forests. Although soil moisture availability to trees is largely dependent on climate, the depth and texture of soil exerts a key secondary influence. Multiple Pleistocene glacial events have shaped the landscape of the central Rocky Mountains creating a patchwork of soils differing in age and textural classification. This mosaic of soil conditions impacts hydrological properties, and montane conifer forests potentially respond to climate variability quite differently depending on the age of glacial till and soil development. We hypothesized that the age of glacial till and associated soil textural changes exert strong control on growth and photosynthetic gas exchange of lodgepole pine. We examined physiological and growth responses of lodgepole pine to interannual variation in maximum annual snow water equivalence (SWEmax) of montane snowpack and growing season air temperature (Tair) and vapor pressure deficit (VPD) across a chronosequence of Pleistocene glacial tills ranging in age from 700k to 12k years. Soil textural differences across the glacial tills illustrate the varying degrees of weathering with the most well developed soils with highest clay content on the oldest till surfaces. We show that sensitivity of growth and carbon isotope discrimination, an integrated measure of canopy gas exchange properties, to interannual variation SWEmax , Tair and VPD is greatest on young till surfaces, whereas trees on old glacial tills with well-developed soils are mostly insensitive to these interannual climate fluctuations. Tree-ring widths were most sensitive to changes in SWEmax on young glacial tills (p < 0.01), and less sensitive on the oldest till (p < 0.05). Tair correlates strongly with δ13C values on the oldest and youngest tills sites, but shows no significant relationship on the middle aged glacial till. It is clear that

  9. TL/OSL ages from Salto Formation (Uruguay)tectonic, climatic and environmental considerations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ubilla, M.; Veroslavsky, G.

    2004-01-01

    TL/OSL ages from Salto Formation based on two sandy samples collected at Salto City and Route 3 (Boycua Creek) are provided: 986±100 ky (LVD-948) and 830±95 ky (LVD-949) respectively. Both support a Pleistocene age for Salto Formation, approximately late early/early middle Pleistocene. Neotectonic and climatic processes are also discussed [es

  10. The Alleret Maar lacustrine sequence (French Massif Central): a 150 ka long early-middle Pleistocene continental paleoenvironmental record.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomade, S.; Pastre, J.; Guillou, H.; Gauthier, A.; Scaillet, S.

    2008-12-01

    Lacustrine maar sequences of the French Massif Central are of great interest for paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental reconstructions of mid-latitudes Quaternary continental environments. In particular, the western Velay region yields exceptional sequences spanning the last 450 ka (Reille et al., J. Quat. Sci. 2000). However, older sequences remain largely unknown despite the presence of interbedded alkaline tephras allowing precise absolute radiochronological control of many lacustrine squences. The Alleret maar is a 1500 m wide phreatomagmatic crater that provides a long lacustrine sequence (41 m). The upper part of this sequence (AL2 core, 14.6 m) was studied between 2005 and 2006 (Pastre et al., C. R. Acad Sci, 2007). A 39Ar/40Ar date (557 ± 5ka) obtained from an interbedded tephra layer located at 7m as well as the associated pollen data attribute the beginning of this sequence to the MIS 15. Thanks to the AL3 core recovered in 2005 (40.6 m, CNRS Meudon) several new tephra layers were discovered in the bottom part of this lacustrine sequence. Three new 39Ar/40Ar ages (single crystal analyses) from trachytic tephra layers were obtained at the LSCE Argon Laboratory (France). These layers are located at -30.2, -36.2 and -39.2m. Ages obtained relative to the ACR-2 flux standard (1,201Ma, Kuiper et al., Science, 2008) range from 692 ± 6 ka (MSWD: 2.3, n=18) for the youngest (-30.2m) to 726 ± 9Ka Ka (MSWD: 2.2, n=12) for the lowest tephra located at -39.2m. These new dates indicate a relatively homogeneous deposition rate of 3.5cm/ka and that the last 10 meters cover the MIS 17-MIS18 period. According to these current radiochronological data the complete lacustrine sequence last more than 150ka. Ongoing sedimentary and pollen studies will allow to extend the paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatic records of the French Massif Central towards the beginning of the early middle Pleistocene.

  11. Mio-Pliocene to Pleistocene paleotopographic evolution of Brittany (France) from a sequence stratigraphic analysis: relative influence of tectonics and climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brault, N.; Bourquin, S.; Guillocheau, F.; Dabard, M.-P.; Bonnet, S.; Courville, P.; Estéoule-Choux, J.; Stepanoff, F.

    2004-01-01

    this study, five paleogeographic maps were drawn up also indicating paleocurrent directions: three maps for the lower cycle (Tortonian retrogradational trend, Late Tortonian to Early Messinian maximum flooding surface and Messinian progradational trend) and two for the upper cycle (Pliocene retrogradational trend and Piacenzian maximum flooding surface). These maps show (1) the variations of paleocurrent directions during the Mio-Pliocene, (2) the extent of estuarine environments during the maximum flooding intervals and (3) a paleodrainage watershed oriented NNW-SSE following the regional Quessoy/Nort-sur-Erdre Fault during the retrogradational trend of the upper cycle and possibly during the progradational trend of the lower cycle. The present-day morphology of the Armorican Massif is characterized by (1) incised valleys and jagged topography, in contrast with the "smooth" morphology described for Mio-Pliocene times and (2) a main East-West drainage watershed, located to the north, separating rivers flowing towards the English Channel from rivers flowing towards the Atlantic Ocean. The Mio-Pliocene/Pleistocene paleotopographic changes seem to be controlled by climatic effects. These can be related to the change in runoff associated with warmer and wetter conditions during the Mio-Pliocene, which control the river discharge and lead to the development of extensive fluvial sheetflood deposits. Tectonic or eustatic factors exert a second-order control.

  12. The Response of Eastern African Terrestrial Environments to the Mid-Pleistocene Climate Transition: Paleosol Isotopic Evidence from the Turkana Basin, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, R.; Lepre, C. J.

    2017-12-01

    Heightened aridity and C4 grass expansion are recorded in Africa during the Mid-Pleistocene Climate Transition (MPCT, 1.3-0.7 Ma), potentially as consequences of decreasing atmospheric CO2. Whether all of Africa responded to the MPCT in the same manner is unclear. Recent studies of a Malawi Basin lake core and paleosols show abundant C3 flora across the MPCT. African climate change is often suggested as a primary cause of hominin speciation, extinction, and technological innovations. Competing environmental-based evolutionary hypotheses propose increased aridity, humidity pulses, and climatic variability as influences of water availability and vegetation structure in Plio-Pleistocene hominin habitats. The Turkana Basin in northern Kenya preserves a rich fossil record of hominins from 4.3-0.7 Ma and offers high-resolution age control via paleomagnetic stratigraphy, isotopic geochronology, and tephrostratigraphy. Turkana's large paleosol isotopic database demonstrates a gradual increase in C4 grass abundance and aridity from 4-1 Ma. Faunal evidence for increasing abundances of C4 grazers corroborates the spread of C4 grasslands from 2-1 Ma. However, there is a dearth of terrestrial environmental records after 1.5 Ma and through the MPCT at Turkana, during which time eastern Africa witnessed the extinction of Paranthropus and the disperal of genus Homo. Here we report a stable isotopic (δ13C, δ18O) record of paleosol carbonates from the Turkana Basin from 1.4 to 0.7 Ma. Based on our findings and comparisons with comparable datasets from other hominin locales, we suggest that eastern African environments responded to the MPCT in a phased shift from south to north, possibly as a consequence of the compression of the ITCZ during glacial maxima and/or to changes to the Indian Ocean Dipole.

  13. Plio-Pleistocene facies environments from the KBS Member, Koobi Fora Formation: implications for climate controls on the development of lake-margin hominin habitats in the northeast Turkana Basin (northwest Kenya)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lepre, C.J.; Quinn, R.L.; Joordens, J.C.A.; Swisher III, C.S.; Feibel, C.S.

    2007-01-01

    Climate change is hypothesized as a cause of major events of Plio-Pleistocene East African hominin evolution, but the vertically discontinuous and laterally confined nature of the relevant geological records has led to difficulties with assessing probable links between the two. High-resolution

  14. A new reference frame for astronomically-tuned Plio-Pleistocene climate variability derived from a benthic oxygen isotope splice of the Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourens, L. J.; Ziegler, M.; Konijnendijk, T. Y. M.; Hilgen, F. J.; Bos, R.; Beekvelt, B.; van Loevezijn, A.; Collin, S.

    2017-12-01

    The astronomical theory of climate has revolutionized our understanding of past climate change and the development of highly accurate geologic time scales for the entire Cenozoic. Most of this understanding has come from the construction of astronomically tuned global ocean benthic foraminiferal oxygen isotope (δ18O) stacked record, derived by the international drilling operations of DSDP, ODP and IODP. The tuning includes fixed phase relationships between the obliquity and precession cycles and the inferred high-latitude climate, i.e. glacial-interglacial, response, which hark back to SPECMAP, using simple ice sheet models and a limited number of radiometric dates. This approach was largely implemented in the widely applied LR04 stack, though LR04 assumed shorter response times for the smaller ice caps during the Pliocene. In the past decades, an astronomically calibrated time scale for the Pliocene and Pleistocene of the Mediterranean has been developed, which has become the reference for the standard Geologic Time Scale. Typical of the Mediterranean marine sediments are the cyclic lithological alternations, reflecting the interference between obliquity and precession-paced low latitude climate variability, such as the African monsoon. Here we present the first benthic foraminiferal based oxygen isotope record of the Mediterranean reference scale, which strikingly mirrors the LR04. We will use this record to discuss the assumed open ocean glacial-interglacial related phase relations over the past 5.3 million years.

  15. A New Tephrochronology for Early Diverse Stone Tool Technologies and Long-Distance Raw Material Transport in the Middle-Late Pleistocene Kapthurin Formation, East Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blegen, N.; Jicha, B.

    2017-12-01

    The Middle to Late Pleistocene (780-10 ka) of East Africa records significant behavioral change, the earliest fossils of Homo sapiens and the dispersals of our species across and out of Africa. Studying human evolution in the Middle to Late Pleistocene thus requires an extensive and precise chronology relating the appearances of various behaviors preserved in archaeological sequences to aspects of hominin biology and evidence of past environments preserved in the fossils and geological sequences. Tephrochronology provides the chronostratigraphic resolution to achieve this through correlation and dating of volcanic ashes. The tephrochronology of the Kapthurin Formation presented here, based on tephra correlations and 40Ar/ 39Ar dates, provides new ages between 396.3 ± 3.4 ka and 465.3 ± 1.0 ka for nine sites showing some of the earliest evidence of diverse blade and Levallois methods of core reduction. These are >110 kyr older than previously known in East Africa. New 40Ar/ 39Ar dates provide a refined age of 222.5 ± 0.6 ka for early evidence of long-distance obsidian transport at the Sibilo School Road Site. Long-distance tephra correlation between the Baringo and Lake Victoria basins also provides a new date of 100 ka for the Middle Stone Age site of Keraswanin. By providing new or older dates for 11 sites containing several important aspects of hominin behavior and extending the chronology of the Kapthurin Formation forward by 130,000 years, the tephrochronology presented here contributes one of the longest and most refined chronostratigraphic frameworks relevant to modern human evolution. In conjunction with recent archaeological and paleoenvironmental data, this tephrochronology provides the foundation to understand the process of modern human behavioral evolution through the East African Middle and Late Pleistocene as it relates to biological and paleoenvironmental circumstances.

  16. The Mediterranean Plio-Pleistocene: A reference frame for astronomically paced low and high latitude climate changes (Jean Baptiste Lamarck Medal Lecture)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourens, Lucas

    2016-04-01

    The astronomical theory of climate has revolutionized our understanding of past climate change and the development of highly accurate geologic time scales for the entire Cenozoic. Most of this understanding has started with the construction of high-resolution stable oxygen isotope (18O) records from planktonic and benthic foraminifera of open ocean deep marine sediments explored by the international drilling operations of DSDP, ODP and IODP. These efforts culminated into global ocean isotopic stacked records, which give a clear picture of the evolution of the climate state through time. Fundamental for these reconstructions are the assumptions made between the astronomical forcing and the tuned time series and the accuracy of the astronomical solution. In the past decades, an astronomically calibrated time scale for the Pliocene and Pleistocene of the Mediterranean has been developed, which has become the reference for the standard Geologic Time Scale. Characteristic of the studied marine sediments are the cyclic lithological alternations, reflecting the interference between obliquity and precession-paced low latitude climate variability. These interference patterns allowed to evaluate the accuracy of astronomical solutions and to constrain the dynamical ellipticity of the Earth and tidal dissipation by the Sun and the Moon, which in turn provided the backbone for the widely applied LR04 open ocean benthic isotope stack of the past 5 Myr. So far, the assumed time lags between orbital forcing and the global climate response as reflected in LR04 have not been tested, while these assumptions hark back to SPECMAP, using simple ice sheet models and a limited number of radiometric dates. In addition, LR04 adopted a shorter response time for the smaller ice caps during the Pliocene. Here I present the first benthic 18O record of the Mediterranean reference scale, which strikingly mirrors the LR04. I will use this record to discuss the assumed phase relations and its

  17. New Zealand's shallow-marine record of Pliocene-Pleistocene global sea-level and climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naish, T.R.

    2005-01-01

    It has now been 10 years since the first high resolution integrated studies of the Wanganui Basin glacio-eustatic cycles were published. During this time significant improvements have been made to the chronology and fine-scale stratigraphy of the basin fill. These improvements are a result of two main advances: (1) more detailed section (cycle) descriptions and mapping, constrained by new geochemically-characteristic tephra within the onshore basin, and (2) the use of onshore-offshore tephra correlations, which allow the highly resolved astrochronologies from the ODP 181 cores to be transferred onshore. In this issue we present the results from this latest phase of high resolution stratigraphic studies in the marine Pliocene-Pleistocene of New Zealand. (author). 45 refs., 2 figs

  18. Early human speciation, brain expansion and dispersal influenced by African climate pulses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanne Shultz

    Full Text Available Early human evolution is characterised by pulsed speciation and dispersal events that cannot be explained fully by global or continental paleoclimate records. We propose that the collated record of ephemeral East African Rift System (EARS lakes could be a proxy for the regional paleoclimate conditions experienced by early hominins. Here we show that the presence of these lakes is associated with low levels of dust deposition in both West African and Mediterranean records, but is not associated with long-term global cooling and aridification of East Africa. Hominin expansion and diversification seem to be associated with climate pulses characterized by the precession-forced appearance and disappearance of deep EARS lakes. The most profound period for hominin evolution occurs at about 1.9 Ma; with the highest recorded diversity of hominin species, the appearance of Homo (sensu stricto and major dispersal events out of East Africa into Eurasia. During this period, ephemeral deep-freshwater lakes appeared along the whole length of the EARS, fundamentally changing the local environment. The relationship between the local environment and hominin brain expansion is less clear. The major step-wise expansion in brain size around 1.9 Ma when Homo appeared was coeval with the occurrence of ephemeral deep lakes. Subsequent incremental increases in brain size are associated with dry periods with few if any lakes. Plio-Pleistocene East African climate pulses as evinced by the paleo-lake records seem, therefore, fundamental to hominin speciation, encephalisation and migration.

  19. Early human speciation, brain expansion and dispersal influenced by African climate pulses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shultz, Susanne; Maslin, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Early human evolution is characterised by pulsed speciation and dispersal events that cannot be explained fully by global or continental paleoclimate records. We propose that the collated record of ephemeral East African Rift System (EARS) lakes could be a proxy for the regional paleoclimate conditions experienced by early hominins. Here we show that the presence of these lakes is associated with low levels of dust deposition in both West African and Mediterranean records, but is not associated with long-term global cooling and aridification of East Africa. Hominin expansion and diversification seem to be associated with climate pulses characterized by the precession-forced appearance and disappearance of deep EARS lakes. The most profound period for hominin evolution occurs at about 1.9 Ma; with the highest recorded diversity of hominin species, the appearance of Homo (sensu stricto) and major dispersal events out of East Africa into Eurasia. During this period, ephemeral deep-freshwater lakes appeared along the whole length of the EARS, fundamentally changing the local environment. The relationship between the local environment and hominin brain expansion is less clear. The major step-wise expansion in brain size around 1.9 Ma when Homo appeared was coeval with the occurrence of ephemeral deep lakes. Subsequent incremental increases in brain size are associated with dry periods with few if any lakes. Plio-Pleistocene East African climate pulses as evinced by the paleo-lake records seem, therefore, fundamental to hominin speciation, encephalisation and migration.

  20. The origin and disappearance of the late Pleistocene-early Holocene short-lived coastal wetlands along the Carmel coast, Israel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivan, Dorit; Greenbaum, Noam; Cohen-Seffer, Ronit; Sisma-Ventura, Guy; Almogi-Labin, Ahuva

    The formation of short-lived backswamps along the Carmel coast of Israel coincides with the rapid global sea-level rise during the late Pleistocene-early Holocene transition. The current study shows that the wetland phenomena originated around 10,000 yr ago and dried up shortly before the local Pre-Pottery Neolithic humans settled on the wetland dark clay sediments 9430 cal yr BP. Palaeontological and stable-isotope data were used in this study to elucidate previously published sedimentological reconstruction obtained from a core drilled into the western trough of the Carmel coastal plain. The water body contained typical brackish calcareous fauna, with variable numerical abundance and low species richness of ostracods and foraminifera. The δ 18O and δ 13C of the ostracod Cyprideis torosa show close similarity to the present Pleistocene coastal aquifer isotopic values. This study therefore concludes that the wetlands were shallow-water bodies fed by groundwater, with no evidence of sea-water mixing. It seems that they developed as the result of high groundwater levels, transportation of sediments landward, and deposition of sand bars at the paleo-river mouths. It is still not fully understood why these wetlands deteriorated abruptly and disappeared within less than 1000 yr.

  1. The Effect of Pleistocene Climate Fluctuations on Distribution of European Abalone (Haliotis tuberculata), Revealed by Combined Mitochondrial and Nuclear Marker Analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roussel, Valérie; Van Wormhoudt, Alain

    2017-04-01

    The genetic differentiation among the populations of the European abalone Haliotis tuberculata was investigated using different markers to better understand the evolutionary history and exchanges between populations. Three markers were used: mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI), the sperm lysin nuclear gene, and eight nuclear microsatellites. These markers present different characteristics concerning mutation rate and inheritance, which provided complementary information about abalone history and gene diversity. Genetic diversity and relationships among subspecies were calculated from a sample of approximately 500 individuals, collected from 17 different locations in the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean, Macaronesia, and Mediterranean Sea. COI marker was used to explore the phylogeny of the species with a network analysis and two phylogenetic methods. The analysis revealed 18 major haplotypes grouped into two distinct clades with a pairwise sequence divergence up to 3.5 %. These clades do not correspond to subspecies but revealed many contacts along Atlantic coast during the Pleistocene interglaciations. The sperm lysin gene analysis separated two different subtaxa: one associated to Macaronesian islands, and the other to all other populations. Moreover, a small population of the northern subtaxon was isolated in the Adriatic Sea-probably before the separation of the two lineages-and evolved independently. Microsatellites were analyzed by different genetics methods, including the Bayesian clustering method and migration patterns analysis. It revealed genetically distinct microsatellite patterns among populations from Mediterranean Sea, Brittany and Normandy, Morocco, and Canary and Balearic islands. Gene flow is asymmetric among the regions; the Azores and the Canary Islands are particularly isolated and have low effective population sizes. Our results support the hypothesis that climate changes since the Pleistocene glaciations have played a major role in the

  2. Molecular records of climate variability and vegetation response since the Late Pleistocene in the Lake Victoria basin, East Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berke, M.A.; Johnson, T.C.; Werne, J.P.; Grice, K.; Schouten, S.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.

    2012-01-01

    New molecular proxies of temperature and hydrology are helping to constrain tropical climate change and elucidate possible forcing mechanisms during the Holocene. Here, we examine a similar to 14,000 year record of climate variability from Lake Victoria, East Africa, the world's second largest

  3. The association between mid-facial morphology and climate in northeast Europe differs from that in north Asia: Implications for understanding the morphology of Late Pleistocene Homo sapiens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evteev, Andrej A; Movsesian, Alla A; Grosheva, Alexandra N

    2017-06-01

    The climate of northeastern Europe is likely to resemble in many ways Late Pleistocene periglacial conditions in Europe, but there have been relatively few studies exploring the association between climate and morphology in the mid-face of modern northeastern European populations. To fill this gap, we sampled 540 male skulls from 22 European and Near Eastern groups, including 314 skulls from 11 populations from northeastern Europe, to test for possible climate-morphology association at the continental scale. Our results found a moderate and highly significant association (R = 0.48, p = 0.0013, Mantel test) between sets of 23 mid-facial measurements and eight climatic variables. A partial least squares analysis revealed this association to be mostly driven by differences between groups from northeastern Europe and populations from the Mediterranean and the Caucasus. Matrices of between-group genetic distances based on Y-chromosome and mtDNA markers, as well as cranial non-metric and geographic distance matrices, were used to control for the possible influence of shared population history. Irrespective of which measure of neutral between-population distances is taken into account, the association between cranial variables and climate remains significant. The pattern of association between climate and morphology of the mid-face in western Eurasia was then compared to that in east and north Asia. Although differences between the two were found, there were also similarities that support existing functional interpretations of morphology for the bony parts of the upper airways. Last, in a preliminary analysis using a reduced set of measurements, mid-facial morphology of several Upper Paleolithic European Homo sapiens specimens was found to be more similar to groups from northern and northeastern Europe than to southern European populations. Thus, the population of northeastern Europe rather than east and north Asian groups should be used as a model when studying

  4. A multilocus evaluation of ermine (Mustela erminea) across the Holarctic, testing hypotheses of Pleistocene diversification in response to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Natalie G.; Hope, Andrew G.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Cook, Joseph A.

    2013-01-01

    Aim: We examined data for ermine (Mustela erminea) to test two sets of diversification hypotheses concerning the number and location of late Pleistocene refugia, the timing and mode of diversification, and the evolutionary influence of insularization. Location: Temperate and sub-Arctic Northern Hemisphere. Methods: We used up to two mitochondrial and four nuclear loci from 237 specimens for statistical phylogeographical and demographic analyses. Coalescent species-tree estimation used a Bayesian approach for clade divergence based on external mutation rate calibrations. Approximate Bayesian methods were used to assess population size, timing of divergence and gene flow. Results: Limited structure coupled with evidence of population growth across broad regions, including previously ice-covered areas, indicated expansion from multiple centres of differentiation, but high endemism along the North Pacific coast (NPC). A bifurcating model of diversification with recent growth spanning three glacial cycles best explained the empirical data. Main conclusions: A newly identified clade in North America indicated a fourth refugial area for ermine. The shallow coalescence of all extant ermine reflects a recent history of diversification overlying a deeper fossil record. Post-glacial colonization has led to potential contact zones for multiple lineages in north-western North America. A model of diversification of ermine accompanied by recent gene flow was marginally less well supported than a model of divergence of major clades in response to the most recent glacial cycles.

  5. A new tephrochronology for early diverse stone tool technologies and long-distance raw material transport in the Middle to Late Pleistocene Kapthurin Formation, East Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blegen, Nick; Jicha, Brian R; McBrearty, Sally

    2018-05-09

    The Middle to Late Pleistocene (780-10 ka) of East Africa records evidence of significant behavioral change, early fossils of Homo sapiens, and the dispersals of our species across and out of Africa. Studying human evolution in this time period thus requires an extensive and precise chronology relating behavioral evidence from archaeological sequences to aspects of hominin biology and evidence of past environments from fossils and geological sequences. Tephrochronology provides the chronostratigraphic resolution to achieve this through correlation and dating of volcanic ashes. The tephrochronology of the Kapthurin Formation presented here, based on tephra correlations and 40 Ar/ 39 Ar dates, provides new ages between 395.6 ± 3.5 ka and 465.3 ± 1.0 ka for nine sites showing diverse blade and Levallois methods of core reduction. These are >110 kyr older than previously known in East Africa. New 40 Ar/ 39 Ar dates provide a refined age of 222.5 ± 0.6 ka for early evidence of long-distance (166 km) obsidian transport at the Sibilo School Road Site. A tephra correlation between the Baringo and Victoria basins also provides a new date of ∼100 ka for the Middle Stone Age site of Keraswanin. By providing new and older dates for 11 sites containing several important aspects of hominin behavior and extending the chronology of the Kapthurin Formation forward by ∼130,000 years, the tephrochronology presented here contributes one of the longest and most refined chronostratigraphic frameworks of Middle through Late Pleistocene East Africa. This tephrochronology thus provides the foundation to understand the process of modern human behavioral evolution as it relates to biological and paleoenvironmental circumstances. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Oleistocene mammals in the late-early Holocene in Santa Lucia river basin (Uruguay southern)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ubilla, M.; Perea, D.; Corona, A.; Rinderknecht, A.; Sanchez, A.

    2012-01-01

    This work is about the fossileferous outcrops belongs to the late Pleistocene - early Holocene in Santa Lucia River. It enable to analyse the last records of megafauna vertebrate extinctions (olistecene mammals) with the climate conditions / environment

  7. An arid episod in the climatic evolution of the Atakor mountains (Hoggar) about 1.5 m.y. (K/Ar datations). Its signification in the paleoclimatic context during the Plio-Pleistocene of Africa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rognon, Pierre; Gourinard, Yves; Bandet, Y.

    1981-01-01

    Nine K/Ar datations of some basaltic lavas from the Atakor mountains allow to date, for the first time, an arid period at 1.5 m.y. +- 0.1. This arid period takes place after the drying of the Plio-Pleistocene tropical lakes and after the first cool Pluvial, during an important turning phase of the geomorphologic and climatic evolution. These environmental changes are similar to those pointed out in Eastern Africa [fr

  8. Final Pleistocene and Early Holocene at Sitio do Meio, Piauí, Brazil: Stratigraphy and comparison with Pedra Furada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Aimola

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available English: Sitio do Meio, in southern Piaui, Brazil, is the second rock shelter presenting fully Pleistocene dates and artefacts after Pedra Furada.  Despite the anthropogenic origin of Pedra Furada artefacts has been questioned, SDM has better chances to be accepted by the scientific community because of the absence of the most relevant stone breaking agents in this kind of site, i.e. waterfalls. This paper presents a critical revision of the history of excavations (1980-2000, stratigraphy, chronology, and the archaeological content of the site (sector 2. At least 98 stone tools have been identified and described, all of them being older than 12,500 BP, i.e. belonging to the Upper Pleistocenic phase of Pedra Furada 3, as defined in the close reference site. The lithic industry of Serra Talhada phase (lower Holocene is also presented and compared with paleoindian sites of North-Eastern and Central Brazil.French:Le Sitio do meio, dans le  Piaui méridional (Brésil est le deuxième abri sous roche de la région ayant livré des dates pléistocènes en dehors du site de la Pedra Furada. L'article présente une révision critique des fouilles (1980-2000, la chronostratigraphie et le contenu archéologique du secteur 2. Une centaine d'outils lithiques sont décrits, ils sont plus anciens de 12,5 ka BP  et correspondent à la phase Pléistocène Pedra Furada 3 définie dans le site éponyme de référence. On présente aussi l' industrie lithique de la phase Serra Talhada (Holocène  ancien en la comparant aux industries paléoindiennes du Nord-Est et du centre du Brésil.

  9. The early Pleistocene deciduous hominid molar FS-72 from the Sangiran Dome of Java, Indonesia: A taxonomic reappraisal based on its comparative endostructural characterization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanolli, Clément; Grine, Frederick E; Kullmer, Ottmar; Schrenk, Friedemann; Macchiarelli, Roberto

    2015-08-01

    Among the ten fossil hominid deciduous teeth reported so far from the Pleistocene sediments of the Sangiran Dome of Java are two isolated lower second molars: specimens PCG.2 from the Kabuh Formation and FS-72 from the Pucangan Formation. While PCG.2 appears to be certainly attributable to Homo erectus, FS-72 is somewhat more problematic, even though it is commonly listed within the Indonesian H. erectus hypodigm. Largely because of its large size, it was originally attributed to Meganthropus paleojavanicus. Subsequent study highlighted a set of metric and nonmetric crown features also found in Australopith and African early Homo (notably H. habilis) homologues. An additional problem with the taxonomic assignment of isolated teeth from the Pleistocene of Java is the presence of Pongo in these same deposits. To assess the taxonomic affinity of FS-72, we investigated its inner structure (tissue proportions and enamel-dentine junction morphology) by using techniques of 2-3D virtual imaging coupled with geometric morphometric analyses. The results show that FS-72 has thinner enamel compared to fossil and recent humans and that its topographic repartition more closely follows the pongine pattern. It also exhibits a Pongo-like elongated morphology of the enamel-dentine junction, with proportionally lower and mesiodistally spaced dentine horns. Given the morphological and metric similarities between fossil orangutan and H. erectus molars, we tested the hypothesis that its internal morphology more closely resembles the patterns evinced by PCG.2 and modern humans than Pongo. Accordingly, we consider that FS-72 more likely represents a dm2 of Pongo rather than Homo. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Climate controls on late Pleistocene landscape evolution of the Okhombe valley, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Temme, A.J.A.M.; Baartman, J.E.M.; Botha, G.A.; Veldkamp, A.; Jongmans, A.G.; Wallinga, J.

    2008-01-01

    Hillslopes in central and western parts of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa are often mantled by colluvial sediments of the Masotcheni Formation. These sediments have accreted in response to several cycles of deposition, pedogenesis and incomplete erosion. Climatic controls on these cycles are

  11. Possible role of oceanic heat transport in early Eocene climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sloan, L. C.; Walker, J. C.; Moore, T. C. Jr

    1995-01-01

    Increased oceanic heat transport has often been cited as a means of maintaining warm high-latitude surface temperatures in many intervals of the geologic past, including the early Eocene. Although the excess amount of oceanic heat transport required by warm high latitude sea surface temperatures can be calculated empirically, determining how additional oceanic heat transport would take place has yet to be accomplished. That the mechanisms of enhanced poleward oceanic heat transport remain undefined in paleoclimate reconstructions is an important point that is often overlooked. Using early Eocene climate as an example, we consider various ways to produce enhanced poleward heat transport and latitudinal energy redistribution of the sign and magnitude required by interpreted early Eocene conditions. Our interpolation of early Eocene paleotemperature data indicate that an approximately 30% increase in poleward heat transport would be required to maintain Eocene high-latitude temperatures. This increased heat transport appears difficult to accomplish by any means of ocean circulation if we use present ocean circulation characteristics to evaluate early Eocene rates. Either oceanic processes were very different from those of the present to produce the early Eocene climate conditions or oceanic heat transport was not the primary cause of that climate. We believe that atmospheric processes, with contributions from other factors, such as clouds, were the most likely primary cause of early Eocene climate.

  12. New foot remains from the Gran Dolina-TD6 Early Pleistocene site (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pablos, Adrián; Lorenzo, Carlos; Martínez, Ignacio; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martinón-Torres, María; Carbonell, Eudald; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2012-10-01

    This paper presents and describes new foot fossils from the species Homo antecessor, found in level TD6 of the site of Gran Dolina (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain). These new fossils consist of an almost complete left talus (ATD6-95) and the proximal three-quarters of a right fourth metatarsal (ATD6-124). The talus ATD6-95 is tentatively assigned to Hominin 10 of the TD6 sample, an adult male specimen with which the second metatarsal ATD6-70+107 (already published) is also tentatively associated. Analysis of these fossils and other postcranial remains has made possible to estimate a stature similar to those of the specimens from the Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain). The morphology of the TD6 metatarsals does not differ significantly from that of modern humans, Neanderthals and the specimens from Sima de los Huesos. Talus ATD6-95, however, differs from the rest of the comparative samples in being long and high, having a long and wide trochlea, and displaying a proportionally short neck. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Possible linkage between supernovae, increased terrestrial lightning, and wildfire activity in the Late Miocene and Early Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, B. C.; Feulner, G.; Melott, A. L.; Kirsten, T.; von Bloh, W.

    2017-12-01

    Radioisotopes from deep-sea deposits show that Earth was affected by nearby supernovae about 2.5 and 8 million years ago. Recent modelling work shows that high-energy particles from these events resulted in greatly enhanced ionization of the troposphere. This could have led to an increase in wildfires via more frequent lightning. Here we show that published data on global fire activity from charcoal records reveal a marked increase in wildfires around the times of the supernova explosions. We use a dynamic global vegetation model to assess the impact of increased lightning frequency on vegetation patterns, finding a patchy global decrease in tree cover. Regionally, vegetation changes are particularly pronounced in western North America, the Mediterranean, Central Asia, Northern Indochina, subtropical South America, Africa and Australia, and notably East Africa, in agreement with empirical evidence for a global shift towards savannas during the Pleistocene. Our results demonstrate that moderately nearby supernovae have the potential to affect life on Earth even if they are too distant to initiate a mass extinction. Finally, we note that the shift from forest to savannah biomes in the East African Rift Valley region has been tentatively linked to hominin evolution in this region.

  14. Paleobiology of Pleistocene Proboscideans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Daniel C.

    2018-05-01

    The paleobiology of Pleistocene proboscideans plays a pivotal role in understanding their history and in answering fundamental questions involving their interactions with other taxa, including humans. Much of our view of proboscidean paleobiology is influenced by analogies with extant elephants. However, a wealth of information is available for reconstructing the paleobiology of ancient proboscideans using data from fossil specimens and preservational settings. Remarkable opportunities include permafrost-derived specimens with preserved soft tissue, intestinal contents with direct evidence of diet, and compositional and structural profiles with subannual temporal resolution archived in appositional systems such as proboscidean tusks. New information on diets and local climates puts our understanding of proboscidean paleoecology on a firmer foundation, but the greatest prospects for new insight spring from life history data now being retrieved from accelerator mass spectrometry–dated fossil material. Interaction between humans and proboscideans has been a critical factor in the history of both groups.

  15. Discriminating Between Tectonic and Climatic Controls on Early Hominin Paleoenvironments From the Koobi Fora Region, Northeastern Turkana Basin, Kenya: Part II

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, R. L.; Lepre, C. J.

    2004-12-01

    Global climate is often elected as a catalyst for environmental change and used to characterize selective pressures acting on Plio-Pleistocene African hominins. Vrba's Habitat Theory (1992) and Pott's Variability Selection (1998) credit mammalian evolutionary pattern and process to global climate regulated by orbital forcing. Feibel (1999: 276) argues the need for a middle ground, tethering the "global-scale climatic phenomena" to "environmental change, habitat shift, and biotic evolution" and offers the basin as a scale for analysis. Feibel suggests that all basins are not created equal, and will respond to climate change with different sensitivities and thresholds. As such, interpretations of climate proxies must account for differences in basin size, climatic regime(s), topography, geology, and water availability when drawing relationships to global phenomena. Here we examine pedogenic carbonate isotopes (d13C, d18O) from the Plio-Pleistocene Koobi Fora Region to elucidate the differential influences of climate, tectonics, and deposition on ecological factors of early hominin evolution in the northeastern Turkana Basin of Kenya. One of the richest Plio-Pleistocene fossil localities in Africa, Koobi Fora has served as a setting for hominin evolution between 4.0 and 1.0 Ma. Numerous paleosols, stratigraphically controlled by tuffaceous marker beds, are preserved in the Plio-Pleistocene sediments of the Koobi Fora Formation. Cerling and others (1988) and Wynn (2000) conducted isotopic studies of pedogenic carbonates from the Plio-Pleistocene Omo Group deposits of the Turkana Basin. With these data Wynn (2004) demonstrates stepwise d13C shifts over the last 4.0 Ma, with marked events at 2.5 and 1.8 Ma, and interprets increased aridity on a basin scale due to comparable records on the east and west side of present Lake Turkana. In this study, we increased the sample size of the current database and conducted widespread sampling of synchronous lateral horizons in the

  16. The disappearance of Picea at the end of Upper Pleistocene in the Basque-Cantabrian region: climatic and anthropogenic factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uzquiano, P.

    1995-01-01

    Charcoal analysis from archaeological sites in Cantabrian region (North of Spain) has yielded evidence of Picea charcoal in Late-Wurmian sediments. Taking into account the behaviour of this taxon in Quaternary climatic cycles, data suggest the presence of small localities of low-density populations near each catchment area of prehistoric settlements. The different function of each site and hunter-gatherers'logistical moves closer to the economic resources are responsible for the presence or absence of Picea, and for the disappearance of its last localities. (author). 16 refs., 4 figs

  17. Pleistocene and Holocene Iberian flora: a complete picture and review

    Science.gov (United States)

    González Sampériz, Penélope

    2010-05-01

    A detailed analysis of the location and composition of Iberian vegetation types during the whole Pleistocene and Holocene periods shows a complex patched landscape with persistence of different types of ecosystems, even during glacial times. In addition, recent, high-resolution palaeoecological records are changing the traditional picture of post-glacial vegetation succession in the Iberian Peninsula. The main available charcoal and pollen sequences include, coniferous and deciduous forest, steppes, shrublands, savannahs and glacial refugia during the Pleistocene for Meso-thermophytes (phytodiversity reservoirs), in different proportions. This panorama suggests an environmental complexity that relates biotic responses to climate changes forced by Milankovitch cycles, suborbital forcings and by the latitudinal and physiographic particularities of the Iberian Peninsula. Thus, many factors are critical in the course of vegetational developments and strong regional differences are observed since the Early Pleistocene. Currently, the flora of Iberia is located in two biogeographical/climatic regions: the Eurosiberian and the Mediterranean. The first one includes northern and northwestern areas of the peninsula, where post-glacial responses of vegetation are very similar to Central Europe, although with some particularities due to its proximity to both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean region. The second one comprises the main territory of Iberia and shows more complex patterns and singularities, now and in the past. Steppe landscapes dominated extensive areas over all the territory during the cold spells of the Quaternary, especially during the Late Pleistocene up to the Last Glacial Maximum, but differences in composition of the dominant taxa (Compositae versus Artemisia) are observed since the Early Pleistocene, probably related to moisture regional gradients. Coastal shelves and intramountainous valleys, even in continental areas, are spots of floristic

  18. The Early Eocene equable climate problem: can perturbations of climate model parameters identify possible solutions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sagoo, Navjit; Valdes, Paul; Flecker, Rachel; Gregoire, Lauren J

    2013-10-28

    Geological data for the Early Eocene (56-47.8 Ma) indicate extensive global warming, with very warm temperatures at both poles. However, despite numerous attempts to simulate this warmth, there are remarkable data-model differences in the prediction of these polar surface temperatures, resulting in the so-called 'equable climate problem'. In this paper, for the first time an ensemble with a perturbed climate-sensitive model parameters approach has been applied to modelling the Early Eocene climate. We performed more than 100 simulations with perturbed physics parameters, and identified two simulations that have an optimal fit with the proxy data. We have simulated the warmth of the Early Eocene at 560 ppmv CO2, which is a much lower CO2 level than many other models. We investigate the changes in atmospheric circulation, cloud properties and ocean circulation that are common to these simulations and how they differ from the remaining simulations in order to understand what mechanisms contribute to the polar warming. The parameter set from one of the optimal Early Eocene simulations also produces a favourable fit for the last glacial maximum boundary climate and outperforms the control parameter set for the present day. Although this does not 'prove' that this model is correct, it is very encouraging that there is a parameter set that creates a climate model able to simulate well very different palaeoclimates and the present-day climate. Interestingly, to achieve the great warmth of the Early Eocene this version of the model does not have a strong future climate change Charney climate sensitivity. It produces a Charney climate sensitivity of 2.7(°)C, whereas the mean value of the 18 models in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) is 3.26(°)C±0.69(°)C. Thus, this value is within the range and below the mean of the models included in the AR4.

  19. The Pleistocene rivers of the English Channel region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antoine, Pierre; Coutard, Jean-Pierre; Gibbard, Philip; Hallegouet, Bernard; Lautridou, Jean-Pierre; Ozouf, Jean-Claude

    2003-02-01

    The Pleistocene history of river systems that enter the English Channel from northern France and southern England is reviewed. During periods of low sea-level (cold stages) these streams were tributaries of the Channel River. In southern England the largest, the River Solent, is an axial stream that has drained the Hampshire Basin from the Early Pleistocene or late Pliocene. Other streams of southern England may be of similar antiquity but their records are generally short and their sedimentary history have been destroyed, as in northern Brittany, by coastal erosion and valley deepening as a consequence of tectonic uplift. In northern France, the Seine and Somme rivers have very well developed terrace systems recording incision that began at around 1 Ma. The uplift rate, deduced from the study of these terrace systems, is of 55 to 60 m myr-1 since the end of the Early Pleistocene. Generally the facies and sedimentary structures indicate that the bulk of the deposits in these rivers accumulated in braided river environments under periglacial climates in all the area around the Channel. Evolution of the rivers reflects their responses to climatic change, local geological structure and long-term tectonic activity. In this context the Middle Somme valley is characterised by a regular pattern in which incision occurs at the beginning of each glacial period within a general background of uplift. Nevertheless the response of the different rivers to climatic variations, uplift and sea-level changes is complex and variable according to the different parts of the river courses.

  20. Evolution of patterns of regional groundwater flow in southeastern New Mexico: Response to post-Pleistocene changes in climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Corbet, T.F.

    1994-01-01

    The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) is a potential repository for transuranic wastes generated by defense programs of the US Department of Energy. The repository site is located 42 km east of the city of Carlsbad, New Mexico in a thick, Permian-age deposit of bedded salt. One consideration in evaluating the performance of the repository is that a future society might inadvertently penetrate the repository with one or more drill holes. Given certain circumstances, these holes could provide a pathway for contaminated brine to move upward into relatively permeable strata located above the bedded salt. There is concern that flowing groundwater could then transport radionuclides laterally to the sub-surface portion of the accessible environment, currently defined by the disposal regulations as the region more than 5 kilometers from the radioactive waste. The simulations presented here are part of a numerical modeling study of the possible impact that a change in climate over the next 10,000 years could have on the pattern of groundwater flow and, consequently, on the migration of radionuclides in strata overlying the repository

  1. Limestone percussion tools from the late Early Pleistocene sites of Barranco León and Fuente Nueva 3 (Orce, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barsky, Deborah; Vergès, Josep-María; Sala, Robert; Menéndez, Leticia; Toro-Moyano, Isidro

    2015-11-19

    In recent years, there is growing interest in the study of percussion scars and breakage patterns on hammerstones, cores and tools from Oldowan African and Eurasian lithic assemblages. Oldowan stone toolkits generally contain abundant small-sized flakes and their corresponding cores, and are characterized by their structural dichotomy of heavy- and light-duty tools. This paper explores the significance of the lesser known heavy-duty tool component, providing data from the late Lower Pleistocene sites of Barranco León and Fuente Nueva 3 (Orce, Spain), dated 1.4-1.2 Myr. Using quantitative and qualitative data from the large-sized limestone industries from these two major sites, we present a new methodology highlighting their morpho-technological features. In the light of the results, we discuss the shortfalls of extant classificatory methods for interpreting the role of percussive technology in early toolkits. This work is rooted in an experimental program designed to reproduce the wide range of percussion marks observed on the limestone artefacts from these two sites. A visual and descriptive reference is provided as an interpretative aid for future comparative research. Further experiments using a variety of materials and gestures are still needed before the elusive traces yield the secrets of the kinds of percussive activities carried out by hominins at these, and other, Oldowan sites. © 2015 The Author(s).

  2. The cheetah Acinonyx pardinensis (Croizet et Jobert, 1828) s.l. at the hominin site of Dmanisi (Georgia) - A potential prime meat supplier in Early Pleistocene ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemmer, Helmut; Kahlke, Ralf-Dietrich; Vekua, Abesalom K.

    2011-09-01

    The fossil site of Dmanisi (southern Georgia) has yielded a significant amount of hominin remains dated to around 1.8 Ma, in addition to a rich contemporaneous faunal record. Based on topographic information combined with an updated list of the vertebrate faunal assemblage, the corresponding palaeo-landscape has been reconstructed. Over a distance of some kilometres the landscape pattern changed from that of a forested valley floor, to tree savannah and open grasslands, thus providing typical habitats for carnivores hunting in open spaces. Morphological analysis of the elements from a nearly complete cat's foreleg reveals the existence of a large and stoutly built cheetah, Acinonyx pardinensis (Croizet et Jobert, 1828) s.l., in the Dmanisi faunal assemblage. Body mass estimations based on the humerus and metacarpals point to a cat of around 100 kg. The amount of pure meat and associated leftovers produced by the cheetah's hunting activity available for other consumers has been estimated. Within Early Pleistocene ecosystems, the cheetah must be considered as a potential fresh prime meat supplier, above that of any other felid.

  3. The morphology and distribution of submerged reefs in the Maui-Nui Complex, Hawaii: New insights into their evolution since the Early Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faichney, Iain D.E.; Webster, James M.; Clague, David A.; Kelley, Chris; Applegate, Bruce; Moore, James G.

    2009-01-01

    Reef drowning and backstepping have long been recognised as reef responses to sea-level rise on subsiding margins. During the Late Pleistocene (~500–14 ka) Hawaiian reefs grew in response to rapid subsidence and 120 m 100 kyr sea-level cycles, with recent work on the submerged drowned reefs around the big island of Hawaii, and in other locations from the last deglacial, providing insight into reef development under these conditions. In contrast, reefs of the Early Pleistocene (~1.8–0.8 Ma) remain largely unexplored despite developing in response to significantly different 60–70 m 41 kyr sea-level cycles. The Maui-Nui Complex (MNC — forming the islands of Maui, Molokai, Lanai and Kahoolawe), provides a natural laboratory to study reef evolution throughout this time period as recent data indicate the reefs grew from 1.1 to 0.5 Ma. We use new high resolution bathymetric and backscatter data as well as sub-bottom profiling seismic data and field observations from ROV and submersible dives to make a detailed analysis of reef morphology and structure around the MNC. We focus specifically on the south-central region of the complex that provides the best reef exposure and find that the morphology of the reefs varies both regionally and temporally within this region. Barrier and pinnacle features dominate the steeper margins in the north of the study area whilst broad backstepping of the reefs is observed in the south. Within the Au'au channel in the central region between the islands, closely spaced reef and karst morphology indicates repeated subaerial exposure. We propose that this variation in the morphology and structure of the reefs within the MNC has been controlled by three main factors; the subsidence rate of the complex, the amplitude and period of eustatic sea-level cycles, and the slope and continuity of the basement substrate. We provide a model of reef development within the MNC over the last 1.2 Ma highlighting the effect that the interaction

  4. Virtual reconstruction of the Early Pleistocene mandible ATD6-96 from Gran Dolina-TD6-2 (Sierra De Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martín-Francés, Laura; Modesto-Mata, Mario; Martínez de Pinillos, Marina; Martinón-Torres, María; García-Campos, Cecilia; Carretero, José Miguel

    2016-04-01

    In this report, we present a further study of the late Early Pleistocene ATD6-96 human mandible, recovered from the TD6-2 level of the Gran Dolina cave site (Sierra de Atapuerca, northern Spain) and attributed to Homo antecessor. ATD6-96 consists of a left half of a gracile mandible of an adult individual with the premolars and molars in place that is broken at the level of the lateral incisor-canine septum. The present analysis is based on a virtual reconstruction of the whole mandible by means of computed tomography (CT). We have reconstructed the symphysis using information from a modern human sample, as well as from a wide sample composed of several Homo specimens. This research has allowed us to record new variables with taxonomic and phylogenetic interest. We have estimated the length/width index of the alveolar arcade, as well as the percentage of the arcade length with regard to the total length. The latter confirms that ATD6-96 shares with all African and Asian Homo species a primitive structural pattern, as it was established in previous studies. In constrast, the length/width index of the alveolar arcade in the H. antecessor specimen is close to the mean values of Neandertals and the Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos hominins. H. antecessor is derived regarding the shape of the mandibular alveolar arcade within the genus Homo and points to an early divergence from contemporaneous African populations. Our results also ratify the affinities of H. antecessor with Neanderthals, although the precise relationship with this lineage needs further research. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Effects of primitive photosynthesis on Earth's early climate system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozaki, Kazumi; Tajika, Eiichi; Hong, Peng K.; Nakagawa, Yusuke; Reinhard, Christopher T.

    2018-01-01

    The evolution of different forms of photosynthetic life has profoundly altered the activity level of the biosphere, radically reshaping the composition of Earth's oceans and atmosphere over time. However, the mechanistic impacts of a primitive photosynthetic biosphere on Earth's early atmospheric chemistry and climate are poorly understood. Here, we use a global redox balance model to explore the biogeochemical and climatological effects of different forms of primitive photosynthesis. We find that a hybrid ecosystem of H2-based and Fe2+-based anoxygenic photoautotrophs—organisms that perform photosynthesis without producing oxygen—gives rise to a strong nonlinear amplification of Earth's methane (CH4) cycle, and would thus have represented a critical component of Earth's early climate system before the advent of oxygenic photosynthesis. Using a Monte Carlo approach, we find that a hybrid photosynthetic biosphere widens the range of geochemical conditions that allow for warm climate states well beyond either of these metabolic processes acting in isolation. Our results imply that the Earth's early climate was governed by a novel and poorly explored set of regulatory feedbacks linking the anoxic biosphere and the coupled H, C and Fe cycles. We suggest that similar processes should be considered when assessing the potential for sustained habitability on Earth-like planets with reducing atmospheres.

  6. Determining Late Pleistocene to Early Holocene deglaciation of the Baltic Ice Lake through sedimentological core sample analysis of IODP Site M0064

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, A. L.; Passchier, S.

    2016-12-01

    This study investigates the deglaciation history of the Scandinavian Ice Sheet (SIS) within the Baltic Sea's Hanö Bay from the Late Pleistocene to the Holocene using samples from International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Site M0064. The research aims to understand how the speed of deglaciation influences Baltic Ice Lake (BIL) drainage patterns and relative sea level changes on a high-resolution timescale. Glacial history of the SIS has been studied through glacial till analysis, surface exposure dating, and modeling, encompassing its most recent deglaciation 20-14ka BP, and suggests ice retreated from the project site 16.7ka BP. Between 17 and 14ka BP global sea level rose 4 meters per century, accompanied by a dramatic increase in atmospheric carbon. This period of rapid sea level rise and global warming is a valuable analog for understanding the Earth's current and projected climate. This project uses particle size analysis to better understand the late-glacial depositional environment in Hanö Bay, and ICP-OES geochemical analysis for evidence pertaining to changing sediment provenance and bottom water oxygenation in the BIL. Diamicton is present between 47 and 9 mbsf in Hole M0064D. At 8 mbsf, the sediment exhibits a prominent upward transition from well-laminated cm-scale grey to more thinly laminated reddish brown rhythmites. With calculated Al/Ti ratios, we find that there is not much provenance change in the sequence, however we see fluctuations in Mn/Al ratios, implying shifts in sediment color may be chemical, possibly indicating redox changes in the water column during sediment deposition. Although we find that particle size in the varve sequence does not change, this factor may be driving chemical fluctuations in the diamicton. These results increase the understanding of ice retreat, paleocirculation and relative sea level changes in the Baltic Sea at the onset of the last deglaciation.

  7. Plio-Pleistocene history and phylogeography of Acacia senegal in dry woodlands and savannahs of sub-Saharan tropical Africa: evidence of early colonisation and recent range expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odee, D W; Telford, A; Wilson, J; Gaye, A; Cavers, S

    2012-12-01

    Drylands are extensive across sub-Saharan Africa, socio-economically and ecologically important yet highly sensitive to environmental changes. Evolutionary history, as revealed by contemporary intraspecific genetic variation, can provide valuable insight into how species have responded to past environmental and population changes and guide strategies to promote resilience to future changes. The gum arabic tree (Acacia senegal) is an arid-adapted, morphologically diverse species native to the sub-Saharan drylands. We used variation in nuclear sequences (internal transcribed spacer (ITS)) and two types of chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) markers (PCR-RFLP, cpSSR) to study the phylogeography of the species with 293 individuals from 66 populations sampled across its natural range. cpDNA data showed high regional and rangewide haplotypic diversity (h(T(cpSSR))=0.903-0.948) and population differentiation (G(ST(RFLP))=0.700-0.782) with a phylogeographic pattern that indicated extensive historical gene flow via seed dispersal. Haplotypes were not restricted to any of the four varieties, but showed significant geographic structure (G(ST(cpSSR))=0.392; R(ST)=0.673; R(ST)>R(ST) (permuted)), with the major division separating East and Southern Africa populations from those in West and Central Africa. Phylogenetic analysis of ITS data indicated a more recent origin for the clade including West and Central African haplotypes, suggesting range expansion in this region, possibly during the Holocene humid period. In conjunction with paleobotanical evidence, our data suggest dispersal to West Africa, and across to the Arabian Peninsula and Indian subcontinent, from source populations located in the East African region during climate oscillations of the Plio-Pleistocene.

  8. Plio-Pleistocene history and phylogeography of Acacia senegal in dry woodlands and savannahs of sub-Saharan tropical Africa: evidence of early colonisation and recent range expansion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odee, D W; Telford, A; Wilson, J; Gaye, A; Cavers, S

    2012-01-01

    Drylands are extensive across sub-Saharan Africa, socio-economically and ecologically important yet highly sensitive to environmental changes. Evolutionary history, as revealed by contemporary intraspecific genetic variation, can provide valuable insight into how species have responded to past environmental and population changes and guide strategies to promote resilience to future changes. The gum arabic tree (Acacia senegal) is an arid-adapted, morphologically diverse species native to the sub-Saharan drylands. We used variation in nuclear sequences (internal transcribed spacer (ITS)) and two types of chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) markers (PCR-RFLP, cpSSR) to study the phylogeography of the species with 293 individuals from 66 populations sampled across its natural range. cpDNA data showed high regional and rangewide haplotypic diversity (hT(cpSSR)=0.903–0.948) and population differentiation (GST(RFLP)=0.700–0.782) with a phylogeographic pattern that indicated extensive historical gene flow via seed dispersal. Haplotypes were not restricted to any of the four varieties, but showed significant geographic structure (GST(cpSSR)=0.392; RST=0.673; RST>RST (permuted)), with the major division separating East and Southern Africa populations from those in West and Central Africa. Phylogenetic analysis of ITS data indicated a more recent origin for the clade including West and Central African haplotypes, suggesting range expansion in this region, possibly during the Holocene humid period. In conjunction with paleobotanical evidence, our data suggest dispersal to West Africa, and across to the Arabian Peninsula and Indian subcontinent, from source populations located in the East African region during climate oscillations of the Plio-Pleistocene. PMID:22929152

  9. Early Mars Climate Modeling and the Faint Young Sun Paradox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haberle, Robert M.

    2015-01-01

    Today Mars is a cold, dry, desert planet. Liquid water is not stable on its surface. There are no lakes, seas, or oceans, and precipitation falls as snowfall. Yet early in its history during the Noachian epoch, there is geological and mineralogical evidence that liquid water from rainfall flowed on its surface creating drainage systems, lakes, and - possibly - seas and oceans. More recent observations by Curiosity in Gale crater hint that such conditions may have persited into the Hesperian. The implication is that early Mars had a wamer climate than it does today as a result of a thicker atmosphere with a more powerful greenhouse effect capable of producing an active hydrological cycle with rainfall, runoff, and evaporation. Since Mariner 9 began accumulating such evidence, researchers have been trying to understand what kind of a climate system could have created greenhouse conditions favorable for liquid water. Unfortunately, the problem is not yet solved.

  10. Facies associations, depositional environments and stratigraphic framework of the Early Miocene-Pleistocene successions of the Mukah-Balingian Area, Sarawak, Malaysia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murtaza, Muhammad; Rahman, Abdul Hadi Abdul; Sum, Chow Weng; Konjing, Zainey

    2018-02-01

    Thirty-five stratigraphic section exposed along the Mukah-Selangau road in the Mukah-Balingian area have been studied. Sedimentological and palynological data have been integrated to gain a better insight into the depositional architecture of the area. Broadly, the Mukah-Balingian area is dominated by fluvial, floodplain and estuarine related coal-bearing deposits. The Balingian, Begrih and Liang formations have been described and interpreted in terms of seven facies association. These are: FA1 - Fluvial-dominated channel facies association; FA2 - Tide-influenced channel facies association; FA3 - Tide-dominated channel facies association; FA4 - Floodplain facies association; FA5 - Estuarine central basin-mud flats facies association; FA6 - Tidal flat facies association and FA7 - Coastal swamps and marshes facies association. The Balingian Formation is characterised by the transgressive phase in the base, followed by a regressive phase in the upper part. On the basis of the occurrence of Florscheutzia trilobata with Florscheutzia levipoli, the Early to Middle Miocene age has been assigned to the Balingian Formation. The distinct facies pattern and foraminifera species found from the samples taken from the Begrih outcrop imply deposition in the intertidal flats having pronounced fluvio-tidal interactions along the paleo-margin. Foraminiferal data combined with the pronounced occurrence of Stenochlaena laurifolia suggest at least the Late Miocene age for the Begrih Formation. The internal stratigraphic architecture of the Liang Formation is a function of a combination of sea level, stable tectonic and autogenic control. Based on stratigraphic position, the Middle Pliocene to Pleistocene age for the Liang Formation is probable. The Balingian, Begrih and Liang formations display deposits of multiple regressive-transgressive cycles while the sediments were derived from the uplifted Penian high and Rajang group.

  11. A Parable of Small Animals and Megafauna Extinction: A Paleo-Economic Theory of Climate Change versus Human Overkill in the Pleistocene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bulte, E.H.; Horan, R.D.; Shogren, J.F.

    2006-01-01

    After centuries of debate, paleontologists are converging towards the conclusion that human overkill caused the massive extinction of large mammals in the late Pleistocene. This paper revisits the question of megafauna extinction by incorporating economic behavior into the debate. We allow for

  12. Plio-Pleistocene facies environments from the KBS Member, Koobi Fora Formation: implications for climate controls on the development of lake-margin hominin habitats in the northeast Turkana Basin (northwest Kenya).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepre, Christopher J; Quinn, Rhonda L; Joordens, Josephine C A; Swisher, Carl C; Feibel, Craig S

    2007-11-01

    Climate change is hypothesized as a cause of major events of Plio-Pleistocene East African hominin evolution, but the vertically discontinuous and laterally confined nature of the relevant geological records has led to difficulties with assessing probable links between the two. High-resolution sedimentary sequences from lacustrine settings can provide comprehensive data of environmental changes and detailed correlations with well-established orbital and marine records of climate. Hominin-bearing deposits from Koobi Fora Ridge localities in the northeast Turkana Basin of Kenya are an archive of Plio-Pleistocene lake-margin sedimentation though significant developmental junctures of northern African climates, East African environments, and hominin evolution. This study examines alluvial channel and floodplain, nearshore lacustrine, and offshore lacustrine facies environments for the approximately 136-m-thick KBS Member (Koobi Fora Formation) exposed at the Koobi Fora Ridge. Aspects of the facies environments record information on the changing hydrosedimentary dynamics of the lake margin and give insights into potential climatic controls. Seasonal/yearly climate changes are represented by the varve-like laminations in offshore mudstones and the slickensides, dish-shaped fractures, and other paleosol features overprinted on floodplain strata. Vertical shifts between facies environments, however, are interpreted to indicate lake-level fluctuations deriving from longer-term, dry-wet periods in monsoonal rainfall. Recurrence periods for the inferred lake-level changes range from about 10,000 to 50,000 years, and several are consistent with the average estimated timescales of orbital precession ( approximately 20,000 years) and obliquity ( approximately 40,000 years). KBS Member facies environments from the Koobi Fora Ridge document the development of lake-margin hominin habitats in the northeast Turkana Basin. Environmental changes in these habitats may be a result of

  13. Cool episodes in Early Tertiary Arctic climate: Evidence from Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spielhagen, R. F.; Tripati, A.

    2009-04-01

    The Arctic is a climatically sensitive and important region. However, very little is known about the climatic and oceanographic evolution of the area, particularly prior to the Neogene. Until recently, the Arctic was assumed to be characterized by relatively warm conditions during the early Cenozoic. The Early Tertiary sedimentary sequence on Svalbard contains several layers with coal seams and broad-leaved plants which were commonly accepted as indicators of a generally temperate-warm climate. Here we report on the intermittent occurrence of certain temperature indicators in the succession, which may represent the first northern high-latitude record of near-freezing temperatures for the early Cenozoic. Besides the findings of probably ice-rafted erratic clasts in the Paleocene and Eocene sandstones and shales, we note especially the occurrence of glendonites which are pseudomorphs of calcite after ikaite (calcium carbonate hexahydrate). We measured the chemical composition of Svalbard glendonites which is almost identical to that of similar pseudomorphs from the Lower Cretaceaous of Northern Canada. Mass spectrometric analyses of the glendonite calcite gave very low carbon isotope values. These values suggest a provenance of the calcium carbonate from marine organic carbon and connect our glendonites to the precursor mineral ikaite which has similar low values. Since a variety of studies has demonstrated that ikaite is stable only at temperatures close to freezing point, we have to infer low temperatures also for the deepositional environment of which the sediments were deposited that now hold glendonites. These results imply the occurrence of cooling phases episodically during the warm background climate of the Paleocene and Eocene, suggesting that temperature variability was much greater than previously recognized.

  14. Case for a wet, warm climate on early Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pollack, J.B.; Kasting, J.F.; Richardson, S.M.; Poliakoff, K.

    1987-01-01

    Arguments are presented in support of the idea that Mars possessed a dense CO 2 atmosphere and a wet, warm climate early in its history. The plausibility of a CO 2 greenhouse is tested by formulating a simple model of the CO 2 geochemical cycle on early Mars. By scaling the rate of silicate weathering on Earth, researchers estimated a weathering time constant of the order of several times 10 to the 7th power years for early Mars. Thus, a dense atmosphere could have existed for a geologically significant time period (approx. 10 to the 9th power years) only if atmospheric CO 2 was being continuously resupplied. The most likely mechanism by which this could have been accomplished is the thermal decomposition of carbonate rocks induced directly or indirectly by intense, global scale volcanism

  15. Potential climatic impact of organic haze on early Earth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasenkopf, Christa A; Freedman, Miriam A; Beaver, Melinda R; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2011-03-01

    We have explored the direct and indirect radiative effects on climate of organic particles likely to have been present on early Earth by measuring their hygroscopicity and cloud nucleating ability. The early Earth analog aerosol particles were generated via ultraviolet photolysis of an early Earth analog gas mixture, which was designed to mimic possible atmospheric conditions before the rise of oxygen. An analog aerosol for the present-day atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan was tested for comparison. We exposed the early Earth aerosol to a range of relative humidities (RHs). Water uptake onto the aerosol was observed to occur over the entire RH range tested (RH=80-87%). To translate our measurements of hygroscopicity over a specific range of RHs into their water uptake ability at any RH 100%, we relied on the hygroscopicity parameter κ, developed by Petters and Kreidenweis. We retrieved κ=0.22 ±0.12 for the early Earth aerosol, which indicates that the humidified aerosol (RH 100%). In regions where the haze was dominant, it is expected that low particle concentrations, once activated into cloud droplets, would have created short-lived, optically thin clouds. Such clouds, if predominant on early Earth, would have had a lower albedo than clouds today, thereby warming the planet relative to current-day clouds. © Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

  16. A major reorganization of Asian climate by the early Miocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. T. Guo

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available The global climate system experienced a series of drastic changes during the Cenozoic. In Asia, these include the climate transformation from a zonal pattern to a monsoon-dominated pattern, the disappearance of typical subtropical aridity, and the onset of inland deserts. Despite major advances in the last two decades in characterizing and understanding these climate phenomena, disagreements persist relative to the timing, behaviors and underlying causes.

    This paper addresses these issues mainly based on two lines of evidence. First, we compiled newly collected data from geological indicators of the Cenozoic environment in China as paleoenvironmental maps of ten intervals. In confirming the earlier observation that a zonal climate pattern was transformed into a monsoonal one, the maps within the Miocene indicate that this change was achieved by the early Miocene, roughly consistent with the onset of loess deposition in China. Although a monsoon-like regime would have existed in the Eocene, it was restricted to tropical-subtropical regions. The latitudinal oscillations of the climate zones during the Paleogene are likely attributable to the imbalance in evolution of polar ice-sheets between the two hemispheres.

    Secondly, we examine the relevant depositional and soil forming processes of the Miocene loess-soil sequences to determine the circulation characteristics with emphasis on the early Miocene. Continuous eolian deposition in the middle reaches of the Yellow River since the early Miocene firmly indicates the formation of inland deserts, which have been constantly maintained during the past 22 Ma. Grain-size gradients between loess sections indicate northerly dust-carrying winds from northern sources, a clear indication of an Asian winter monsoon system. Meanwhile, well-developed Luvisols show evidence that moisture from the oceans reached northern China. This evidence shows the coexistence of two kinds of

  17. Oxygen isotopic stratigraphy as a tool for chronology establishing of early and Middle Pleistocene speleothems - a case study from Gleboka Cave (Kraków-Czestochowa Upland, Poland

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Blaszczyk, M.; Hercman, H.; Pawlak, J.; Gasiorowski, M.; Matoušková, Šárka; Aninowska, M.; Kicinska, D.; Tyc, A.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 22, č. 2 (2017) ISSN 1335-213X. [Vedecká konferencia „Výskum, využívanie a ochrana jaskýň“ /11./. 25.09.2017-26.09.2017, Liptovský Mikuláš] Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : speleothems * Pleistocene * Gleboka Cave Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy

  18. Fossils in Late Cretaceous to early Palaeocene flint nodules embedded in pleistocene glaciofluvial sediments near Fukov (Děčín District, Northern Bohemia)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pokorný, R.; Kaše, J.; Kvaček, J.; Zágoršek, K.; Kočí, T.; Žítt, Jiří

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 68, 3/4 (2012), s. 119-131 ISSN 0036-5343 Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : Erratic boulders * Flint * Glaciofluvial sediments * Late Cretaceous * Northern Bohemia * Palaeocene * Pleistocene glaciation * Taphocoenosis Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy http://www.nm.cz/publikace/archiv.php?id=4&rok=68&kcislu=3-4&f_=Zobrazit

  19. Managing Risks? Early Warning Systems for Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sitati, A. M.; Zommers, Z. A.; Habilov, M.

    2014-12-01

    Early warning systems are a tool with which to minimize risks posed by climate related hazards. Although great strides have been made in developing early warning systems most deal with one hazard, only provide short-term warnings and do not reach the most vulnerable. This presentation will review research results of the United Nations Environment Programme's CLIM-WARN project. The project seeks to identify how governments can better communicate risks by designing multi-hazard early warning systems that deliver actionable warnings across timescales. Household surveys and focus group discussions were conducted in 36 communities in Kenya, Ghana and Burkina Faso in order to identify relevant climate related hazards, current response strategies and early warning needs. Preliminary results show significant variability in both risks and needs within and between countries. For instance, floods are more frequent in rural western parts of Kenya. Droughts are frequent in the north while populations in urban areas face a range of hazards - floods, droughts, disease outbreaks - that sometimes occur simultaneously. The majority of the rural population, especially women, the disabled and the elderly, do not have access to modern media such as radio, television, or internet. While 55% of rural populace never watches television, 64% of urban respondents watch television on a daily basis. Communities have different concepts of how to design warning systems. It will be a challenge for national governments to create systems that accommodate such diversity yet provide standard quality of service to all. There is a need for flexible and forward-looking early warning systems that deliver broader information about risks. Information disseminated through the system could not only include details of hazards, but also long-term adaptation options, general education, and health information, thus increasingly both capabilities and response options.

  20. Macromammalian faunas, biochronology and palaeoecology of the early Pleistocene Main Quarry hominin-bearing deposits of the Drimolen Palaeocave System, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Justin W; Rovinsky, Douglass S; Herries, Andy I R; Menter, Colin G

    2016-01-01

    The Drimolen Palaeocave System Main Quarry deposits (DMQ) are some of the most prolific hominin and primate-bearing deposits in the Fossil Hominids of South Africa UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discovered in the 1990s, excavations into the DMQ have yielded a demographically diverse sample of Paranthropus robustus (including DNH 7, the most complete cranium of the species recovered to date), early Homo, Papio hamadryas robinsoni and Cercopithecoides williamsi. Alongside the hominin and primate sample is a diverse macromammalian assemblage, but prior publications have only provided a provisional species list and an analysis of the carnivores recovered prior to 2008. Here we present the first description and analysis of the non-primate macromammalian faunas from the DMQ, including all 826 taxonomically identifiable specimens catalogued from over two decades of excavation. We also provide a biochronological interpretation of the DMQ deposits and an initial discussion of local palaeoecology based on taxon representation.The current DMQ assemblage consists of the remains of minimally 147 individuals from 9 Orders and 14 Families of mammals. The carnivore assemblage described here is even more diverse than established in prior publications, including the identification of Megantereon whitei, Lycyaenops silberbergi, and first evidence for the occurrence of Dinofelis cf. barlowi and Dinofelis aff. piveteaui within a single South African site deposit. The cetartiodactyl assemblage is dominated by bovids, with the specimen composition unique in the high recovery of horn cores and dominance of Antidorcas recki remains. Other cetartiodactyl and perissodactyl taxa are represented by few specimens, as are Hystrix and Procavia; the latter somewhat surprisingly so given their common occurrence at penecontemporaneous deposits in the region. Equally unusual (particularly given the size of the sample) is the identification of single specimens of giraffoid, elephantid and aardvark

  1. Macromammalian faunas, biochronology and palaeoecology of the early Pleistocene Main Quarry hominin-bearing deposits of the Drimolen Palaeocave System, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin W. Adams

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The Drimolen Palaeocave System Main Quarry deposits (DMQ are some of the most prolific hominin and primate-bearing deposits in the Fossil Hominids of South Africa UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discovered in the 1990s, excavations into the DMQ have yielded a demographically diverse sample of Paranthropus robustus (including DNH 7, the most complete cranium of the species recovered to date, early Homo, Papio hamadryas robinsoni and Cercopithecoides williamsi. Alongside the hominin and primate sample is a diverse macromammalian assemblage, but prior publications have only provided a provisional species list and an analysis of the carnivores recovered prior to 2008. Here we present the first description and analysis of the non-primate macromammalian faunas from the DMQ, including all 826 taxonomically identifiable specimens catalogued from over two decades of excavation. We also provide a biochronological interpretation of the DMQ deposits and an initial discussion of local palaeoecology based on taxon representation.The current DMQ assemblage consists of the remains of minimally 147 individuals from 9 Orders and 14 Families of mammals. The carnivore assemblage described here is even more diverse than established in prior publications, including the identification of Megantereon whitei, Lycyaenops silberbergi, and first evidence for the occurrence of Dinofelis cf. barlowi and Dinofelis aff. piveteaui within a single South African site deposit. The cetartiodactyl assemblage is dominated by bovids, with the specimen composition unique in the high recovery of horn cores and dominance of Antidorcas recki remains. Other cetartiodactyl and perissodactyl taxa are represented by few specimens, as are Hystrix and Procavia; the latter somewhat surprisingly so given their common occurrence at penecontemporaneous deposits in the region. Equally unusual (particularly given the size of the sample is the identification of single specimens of giraffoid, elephantid

  2. CO2 condensation and the climate of early Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasting, J F

    1991-01-01

    A one-dimensional, radiative-convective climate model was used to reexamine the question of whether early Mars could have been kept warm by the greenhouse effect of a dense, CO2 atmosphere. The new model differs from previous models by considering the influence of CO2 clouds on the convective lapse rate and on the the planetary radiation budget. Condensation of CO2 decreases the lapse rate and, hence, reduces the magnitude of the greenhouse effect. This phenomenon becomes increasingly important at low solar luminosities and may preclude warm (0 degree C), globally averaged surface temperatures prior to approximately 2 billion years ago unless other greenhouse gases were present in addition to CO2 and H2O. Alternative mechanisms for warming early Mars and explaining channel formation are discussed.

  3. Mountains as early warning indicators of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, M. W.

    2015-12-01

    The panoramic splendor and complexity of mountain environments have inspired and challenged humans for centuries. These areas have been variously perceived as physical structures to be conquered, as sites of spiritual inspiration, and as some of the last untamed natural places on Earth. In our time, the perception that "mountains are forever" may provide solace to those seeking stability in a rapidly changing world. However, changes in the hydrology and in the abundance and species composition of the native flora and fauna of mountain ecosystems are potential bellwethers of global change, because these systems have a propensity to amplify environmental changes within specific portions of this landscape. Mountain areas are thus sentinels of climate change. We are seeing effects today in case histories I present from the Himalaya's, Andes, Alps, and Rocky Mountains. Furthermore, these ecosystem changes are occurring in mountain areas before they occur in downstream ecosystems. Thus, mountains are early warning indicators of perturbations such as climate change. The sensitivity of mountain ecosystems begs for enhanced protection and worldwide protection. Our understanding of the processes that control mountain ecosystems—climate interactions, snowmelt runoff, biotic diversity, nutrient cycling—is much less developed compared to downstream ecosystems where human habitation and development has resulted in large investments in scientific knowledge to sustain health and agriculture. To address these deficiencies, I propose the formation of an international mountain research consortium.

  4. Ice-rafting from the British-Irish ice sheet since the earliest Pleistocene (2.6 million years ago): implications for long-term mid-latitudinal ice-sheet growth in the North Atlantic region

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thierens, M.; Pirlet, H.; Colin, C.; Latruwe, K.; Vanhaecke, F.; Lee, J.R.; Stuut, J.-B.; Titschaeck, J.; Titschack, J.; Huvenne, V.; Dorschel, B.; Wheeler, A.J.; Henriet, J.P.

    2012-01-01

    The Plio-Pleistocene intensification of Northern Hemisphere continental ice-sheet development is known to have profoundly affected the global climate system. Evidence for early continental glaciation is preserved in sediments throughout the North Atlantic Ocean, where ice-rafted detritus (IRD)

  5. Lineage-specific late pleistocene expansion of an endemic subtropical gossamer-wing damselfly, Euphaea formosa, in Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huang Jen-Pan

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Pleistocene glacial oscillations have significantly affected the historical population dynamics of temperate taxa. However, the general effects of recent climatic changes on the evolutionary history and genetic structure of extant subtropical species remain poorly understood. In the present study, phylogeographic and historical demographic analyses based on mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences were used. The aim was to investigate whether Pleistocene climatic cycles, paleo-drainages or mountain vicariance of Taiwan shaped the evolutionary diversification of a subtropical gossamer-wing damselfly, Euphaea formosa. Results E. formosa populations originated in the middle Pleistocene period (0.3 Mya and consisted of two evolutionarily independent lineages. It is likely that they derived from the Pleistocene paleo-drainages of northern and southern Minjiang, or alternatively by divergence within Taiwan. The ancestral North-central lineage colonized northwestern Taiwan first and maintained a slowly growing population throughout much of the early to middle Pleistocene period. The ancestral widespread lineage reached central-southern Taiwan and experienced a spatial and demographic expansion into eastern Taiwan. This expansion began approximately 30,000 years ago in the Holocene interglacial period. The ancestral southern expansion into eastern Taiwan indicates that the central mountain range (CMR formed a barrier to east-west expansion. However, E. formosa populations in the three major biogeographic regions (East, South, and North-Central exhibit no significant genetic partitions, suggesting that river drainages and mountains did not form strong geographical barriers against gene flow among extant populations. Conclusions The present study implies that the antiquity of E. formosa's colonization is associated with its high dispersal ability and larval tolerance to the late Pleistocene dry grasslands. The effect of late Pleistocene

  6. Pliocene warmth, polar amplification, and stepped Pleistocene cooling recorded in NE Arctic Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brigham-Grette, Julie; Melles, Martin; Minyuk, Pavel; Andreev, Andrei; Tarasov, Pavel; DeConto, Robert; Koenig, Sebastian; Nowaczyk, Norbert; Wennrich, Volker; Rosén, Peter; Haltia, Eeva; Cook, Tim; Gebhardt, Catalina; Meyer-Jacob, Carsten; Snyder, Jeff; Herzschuh, Ulrike

    2013-06-21

    Understanding the evolution of Arctic polar climate from the protracted warmth of the middle Pliocene into the earliest glacial cycles in the Northern Hemisphere has been hindered by the lack of continuous, highly resolved Arctic time series. Evidence from Lake El'gygytgyn, in northeast (NE) Arctic Russia, shows that 3.6 to 3.4 million years ago, summer temperatures were ~8°C warmer than today, when the partial pressure of CO2 was ~400 parts per million. Multiproxy evidence suggests extreme warmth and polar amplification during the middle Pliocene, sudden stepped cooling events during the Pliocene-Pleistocene transition, and warmer than present Arctic summers until ~2.2 million years ago, after the onset of Northern Hemispheric glaciation. Our data are consistent with sea-level records and other proxies indicating that Arctic cooling was insufficient to support large-scale ice sheets until the early Pleistocene.

  7. Ecospaces occupied by Homo erectus and Homo sapiens in insular Southeast Asia in the Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertler, Christine; Haupt, Susanne; Volmer, Rebekka; Bruch, Angela

    2014-05-01

    Hominins migrated to the islands of the Sunda Shelf multiple times. At least two immigration events are evident, an early immigration of Homo erectus in the late Early Pleistocene and a second immigration of Homo sapiens during the Late Pleistocene. Regional environments changed considerably in the Pleistocene. Expansion patterns among hominins are at least co-determined by their ecologies and environmental change. We examine these expansion patterns on the basis of habitat reconstructions. Mammalian communities provide a geographically extensive record and permit to assess hominin ecospaces. Although chronological resolution is low, they represent the most complete record of habitat changes associated with hominin expansion patterns. In order to reconstruct and compare hominin ecospaces on a quantitative scale, we set up a reference sample consisting of mammalian communities of 117 national parks in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. The diversity of such communities is assessed by ecological profiling of specialized herbivore taxa. Moreover, datasets on climate and vegetation correlate with the diversity structure of such specialized herbivore communities. Reconstructing the diversity structure of communities at key sites in Pleistocene Southeast Asia permits to infer features of the climatic and vegetation framework associated with different hominin taxa. Our results show that Homo erectus and Homo sapiens did not occupy similar ecospaces. The ecospace of Homo erectus is characterized by comparatively low diversity among frugivorous and folivorous taxa, while obligate grazers are part of the assemblages. Specialized herbivore communities with such a diversity structure occur at present in East Africa, while they are absent in Southeast Asia. In the reference sample, this type of ecospace corresponds to seasonal wetlands. Although Homo sapiens still inhabits this type of environment in Southeast Asia, his ecospace is wider. Homo sapiens is associated with

  8. Sedimentary cyclicity in early Pleistocene, evaporitic, playa-lake lacustrine deposits in the Guadix-Baza basin (Betic Cordillera, Spain); Ciclicidad sedimentaria en depositos lacustres evaporiticos tipo playa-lake del Pleistoceno inferior en la cuenca de Guadix-Baza (Cordillera Betica, Espana)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia Aguilar, J. M.; Guera-Menchan, A.; Serrano, F.; Palmqvist, P.

    2013-06-01

    The Guadix-Baza basin (Betic Cordillera, southern Spain) contains in its eastern sector an early Pleistocene (Gelasian and lowermost Calabrian) sedimentary unit that was deposited in a shallow lacustrine environment. Given that the chronological limits of this unit lie between 2.5 and 1.6 Ma BP, the thickness of its preserved sediments (400 m) and high sedimentation rate (44.4 cm/ka) are remarkable. Numerous sedimentary cycles marked by an alternation of marls and sands are commonly found in the marginal sectors and marls and gypsum in the central sector, which would owe their origins to permanent flooding and evaporation/ re-flooding phases due to global climatic changes. Spectral analyses carried out using Fourier transform have revealed the existence of temporary frequencies associated with sedimentary cycles of between 0.2 and 5.2 ka. The origin of these cycles may be associated with variations in solar radiation and oscillations in the Moons orbital position, which would induce global climatic changes resulting in the rise and fall of the water table of the lake. Autocorrelation analyses conducted separately on the marly and evaporitic levels support this conclusion, as they indicate the existence of significant direct correlations between about 4 to 12 sedimentary cycles, which would correspond to repetitions of the stratigraphic series over a time span of 1.3 to 4 ka. (Author)

  9. Arctic marine climate of the early nineteenth century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Brohan

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available The climate of the early nineteenth century is likely to have been significantly cooler than that of today, as it was a period of low solar activity (the Dalton minimum and followed a series of large volcanic eruptions. Proxy reconstructions of the temperature of the period do not agree well on the size of the temperature change, so other observational records from the period are particularly valuable. Weather observations have been extracted from the reports of the noted whaling captain William Scoresby Jr., and from the records of a series of Royal Navy expeditions to the Arctic, preserved in the UK National Archives. They demonstrate that marine climate in 1810–1825 was marked by consistently cold summers, with abundant sea-ice. But although the period was significantly colder than the modern average, there was considerable variability: in the Greenland Sea the summers following the Tambora eruption (1816 and 1817 were noticeably warmer, and had less sea-ice coverage, than the years immediately preceding them; and the sea-ice coverage in Lancaster Sound in 1819 and 1820 was low even by modern standards.

  10. Pleistocene Paleoart of Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert G. Bednarik

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Pleistocene rock art is abundant in Australia, but has so far received only limited attention. Instead there has been a trend, begun over a century ago, to search for presumed depictions of extinct megafauna and the tracks of such species. All these notions have been discredited, however, and the current evidence suggests that figurative depiction was introduced only during the Holocene, never reaching Tasmania. Nevertheless, some Australian rock art has been attributed to the Pleistocene by direct dating methods, and its nature implies that a significant portion of the surviving corpus of rock art may also be of such age. In particular much of Australian cave art is of the Ice Age, or appears to be so, and any heavily weathered or patinated petroglyphs on particularly hard rocks are good candidates for Pleistocene antiquity. On the other hand, there is very limited evidence of mobiliary paleoart of such age in Australia.

  11. Influence of carbon dioxide clouds on early martian climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mischna, M A; Kasting, J F; Pavlov, A; Freedman, R

    2000-06-01

    Recent studies have shown that clouds made of carbon dioxide ice may have warmed the surface of early Mars by reflecting not only incoming solar radiation but upwelling IR radiation as well. However, these studies have not treated scattering self-consistently in the thermal IR. Our own calculations, which treat IR scattering properly, confirm these earlier calculations but show that CO2 clouds can also cool the surface, especially if they are low and optically thick. Estimating the actual effect of CO2 clouds on early martian climate will require three-dimensional models in which cloud location, height, and optical depth, as well as surface temperature and pressure, are determined self-consistently. Our calculations further confirm that CO2 clouds should extend the outer boundary of the habitable zone around a star but that there is still a finite limit beyond which above-freezing surface temperatures cannot be maintained by a CO2-H2O atmosphere. For our own Solar System, the absolute outer edge of the habitable zone is at approximately 2.4 AU.

  12. The Watinglo mandible: a second terminal Pleistocene Homo sapiens fossil from tropical Sahul with a test on existing models for the human settlement of the region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulbeck, D; O'Connor, S

    2011-02-01

    This paper analyses a fossil human mandible, dated to circa 10ka, from Watinglo rockshelter on the north coast of Papua New Guinea. The fossil is metrically and morphologically similar to male mandibles of recent Melanesians and Australian Aborigines. It is distinguished from Kow Swamp and Coobool Creek male mandibles (Murray Valley, terminal Pleistocene) by being smaller and having different shape characteristics, as well as smaller teeth and a slower rate of tooth wear. It pairs with the Liang Lemdubu female (Late Glacial Maximum, Aru Islands) in suggesting that the morphology of the terminal Pleistocene inhabitants of tropical Sahul was gracile compared to their contemporaries within the southern Murray drainage. An explanatory scenario for this morphological contrast is developed in the context of the Homo sapiens early fossil record, Australasian mtDNA evidence, terminal Pleistocene climatic variation, and the possibility of multiple entry points into Sahul. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  13. On the limits of using combined U-series/ESR method to date fossil teeth from two Early Pleistocene archaeological sites of the Orce area (Guadix-Baza basin, Spain)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duval, Mathieu; Falgueres, Christophe; Bahain, Jean-Jacques; Shao, Qingfeng; Grun, Rainer; Aubert, Maxime; Dolo, Jean-Michel; Agusti, Jordi; Martinez-Navarro, Bienvenido; Palmqvist, Paul; Toro-Moyano, Isidro

    2012-01-01

    The combined U-series/electron spin resonance (ESR) dating method was applied to nine teeth from two Early Pleistocene archaeological sites located in the Orce area (Guadix-Baza Basin, Southern Spain): Fuente Nueva-3 (FN-3) and Barranco Leon (BL). The combination of bio-stratigraphy and magneto-stratigraphy places both sites between the Olduvai and Jaramillo sub-chrons (1.78-1.07 Ma). Our results highlight the difficulty of dating such old sites and point out the limits of the combined U-series/ ESR dating method based on the US model. We identified several sources of uncertainties that may lead to inaccurate age estimates. Seven samples could not be dated because the dental tissues had ( 230 Th/ 234 U) activity ratios higher than equilibrium, indicating that uranium had probably leached from these tissues. It was however possible to calculate numerical estimates for two of the teeth, both from FN-3. One yielded a Middle Pleistocene age that seems to be strongly underestimated; the other provided an age of 1.19±0.21 Ma, in agreement with data obtained from independent methods. The latter result gives encouragement that there are samples that can be used for routine dating of old sites. (authors)

  14. A Sulfur Dioxide Climate Feedback on Early Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halevy, I.; Pierrehumbert, R. T.; Schrag, D. P.

    2007-12-01

    Reconciling evidence for persistent liquid water during the late Noachian with our understanding of the evolution of the Martian atmosphere and of solar luminosity remains a challenge, despite several decades of research. An optically-thicker atmosphere to supply the necessary radiative forcing would result in the existence of a carbon cycle similar to Earth's, where the release of CO2 from volcanoes is balanced by burial of calcium carbonate through silicate weathering reactions that remove protons and release alkalinity to surface waters. Existence of such a carbon cycle on Mars, even for tens of millions of years, would yield carbonate sediments in far greater abundance than has been observed, as well as residual clay minerals. The high concentration of sulfur in Martian soils and rocks indicates that Martian volcanic emissions contained abundant sulfur volatiles in addition to CO2. However, the atmospheric and aquatic chemistry of SO2 under the reducing conditions of early Mars, in contrast with the presently oxidizing and biologically-catalyzed Earth, has not been thoroughly examined. We argue that these conditions may have allowed atmospheric concentrations of SO2 high enough to augment a thick CO2-H2O greenhouse. Furthermore, early Martian climate may have been stabilized by a feedback mechanism involving SO2 and the solubility of sulfite minerals instead of CO2 and the solubility of carbonates. We present the results of a one-dimensional radiative-convective model, demonstrating the radiative importance of SO2 to the planetary energy budget. We also use a simple geochemical model to show that the presence of SO2 in the early Martian atmosphere would have dominated the aquatic chemistry on the planet's surface, and may provide an explanation for how water could have persisted for millions of years without forming massive carbonate sediments, yet allowing the formation of clay minerals.

  15. Size variation in early human mandibles and molars from Klasies River, South Africa: comparison with other middle and late Pleistocene assemblages and with modern humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royer, Danielle F; Lockwood, Charles A; Scott, Jeremiah E; Grine, Frederick E

    2009-10-01

    Previous studies of the Middle Stone Age human remains from Klasies River have concluded that they exhibited more sexual dimorphism than extant populations, but these claims have not been assessed statistically. We evaluate these claims by comparing size variation in the best-represented elements at the site, namely the mandibular corpora and M(2)s, to that in samples from three recent human populations using resampling methods. We also examine size variation in these same elements from seven additional middle and late Pleistocene sites: Skhūl, Dolní Vestonice, Sima de los Huesos, Arago, Krapina, Shanidar, and Vindija. Our results demonstrate that size variation in the Klasies assemblage was greater than in recent humans, consistent with arguments that the Klasies people were more dimorphic than living humans. Variation in the Skhūl, Dolní Vestonice, and Sima de los Huesos mandibular samples is also higher than in the recent human samples, indicating that the Klasies sample was not unusual among middle and late Pleistocene hominins. In contrast, the Neandertal samples (Krapina, Shanidar, and Vindija) do not evince relatively high mandibular and molar variation, which may indicate that the level of dimorphism in Neandertals was similar to that observed in extant humans. These results suggest that the reduced levels of dimorphism in Neandertals and living humans may have developed independently, though larger fossil samples are needed to test this hypothesis.

  16. The Valle di Manche section (Calabria, Southern Italy): A high resolution record of the Early-Middle Pleistocene transition (MIS 21-MIS 19) in the Central Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capraro, Luca; Ferretti, Patrizia; Macrì, Patrizia; Scarponi, Daniele; Tateo, Fabio; Fornaciari, Eliana; Bellini, Giulia; Dalan, Giorgia

    2017-06-01

    The on-land marine Valle di Manche section (Crotone Basin, Calabria, Southern Italy), one of the candidates to host the GSSP of the Middle Pleistocene (;Ionian;) Stage, preserves a manifold record of independent chronological, paleoclimatic and stratigraphic proxies that permit a straightforward correlation with marine and terrestrial reference records at the global scale. In particular, the section holds an excellent record of the Matuyama-Brunhes magnetic reversal, which occurs in the midst of Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 19. We report on a complete revision of the section that improves dramatically the available dataset, especially in the stratigraphic interval straddling the Lower-Middle Pleistocene boundary. Our benthic δ18O record provides evidence that the Matuyama-Brunhes transition, the stratigraphic position of which is marked by a prominent tephra (the ;Pitagora ash;), occurred during full MIS 19, in agreement with many records worldwide. We obtained an age of 786.9 ± 5 ka for the Matuyama-Brunhes magnetic reversal and pinpointed the paleomagnetic transition of to a 3 cm-thick interval, indicating that the event was very fast. Since the section fulfills all the requirements to host the GSSP of the Ionian Stage, we propose that the boundary should be placed at the base of the ;Pitagora ash;, ca. 12.5 cm below the midpoint of the Matuyama-Brunhes reversal.

  17. Climate sensitivity to Arctic seaway restriction during the early Paleogene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Christopher D.; LeGrande, Allegra N.; Tripati, Aradhna K.

    2009-09-01

    The opening and closing of ocean gateways affects the global distribution of heat, salt, and moisture, potentially driving climatic change on regional to global scales. Between 65 and 45 million years ago (Ma), during the early Paleogene, exchange between the Arctic and global oceans occurred through two narrow and shallow seaways, the Greenland-Norway seaway and the Turgai Strait. Sediments from the Arctic Ocean suggest that, during this interval, the surface ocean was warm, brackish, and episodically enabled the freshwater fern Azolla to bloom. The precise mechanisms responsible for the development of these conditions in the Paleogene Arctic remain uncertain. Here we show results from an isotope-enabled, atmosphere-ocean general circulation model, which indicate that Northern Hemisphere climate would have been very sensitive to the degree of oceanic exchange through the Arctic seaways. We also present modelled estimates of seawater and calcite δ18O for the Paleogene. By restricting these seaways, we simulate freshening of the surface Arctic Ocean to ~ 6 psu and warming of sea-surface temperatures by 2 °C in the North Atlantic and 5-10 °C in the Labrador Sea. Our results may help explain the occurrence of low-salinity tolerant taxa in the Arctic Ocean during the Eocene and provide a mechanism for enhanced warmth in the north western Atlantic. We propose that the formation of a volcanic land-bridge between Greenland and Europe could have caused increased ocean convection and warming of intermediate waters in the Atlantic. If true, this result is consistent with the theory that bathymetry changes may have caused thermal destabilisation of methane clathrates and supports a tectonic trigger hypothesis for the Paleocene Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM).

  18. Response of alluvial systems to Late Pleistocene climate changes recorded by environmental magnetism in the Añavieja Basin (Iberian Range, NE Spain)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oliva-Urcia, B.; Muñoz, A.; Larrasoaña, J.C.; Luzon, A.; Perez, A.; Gonzalez, A.; Jiang, Z.; Liu, Q.; Roman-Berdi, T.

    2016-07-01

    Environmental magnetic proxies were analyzed in a relatively monotonous, ~25.3m thick alluvial sedimentary sequence drilled in the Añavieja Basin (NE Spain). Results from the core AÑ2 suggest that the concentrationdependent magnetic parameters mainly reflect variations in the content of detrital magnetite, sourced in the catchment rocks and soils of the basin, via changes in the dynamics of alluvial fans due to temperature changes in the northern hemisphere during the Late Pleistocene. The correspondence between the magnetic proxies and the temperature variations in the North Atlantic region (NGRIP curve) indicates that higher (lower) concentrations and finer (coarser) magnetite grains coincide with warm (cold) periods. We propose that during cold periods, a sparser vegetation cover favored the incoming of higher energy runoff bearing coarser sediments to the basin that are relatively impoverished in magnetite. In contrast, during warm periods, the wider distribution of the vegetation cover associated with the lower runoff energy lead to finer, magnetite-richer sediment input to the basin. Maghemite, presumably of pedogenic origin, appears to be present also in the studied alluvial sediments. Further studies are necessary to unravel its palaeoclimatic significance. (Author)

  19. The Punta Lucero Quarry site (Zierbena, Bizkaia): a window into the Middle Pleistocene in the Northern Iberian Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Sala, Nohemi; Arceredillo, Diego; García, Nuria; Martínez-Pillado, Virginia; Rios-Garaizar, Joseba; Garate, Diego; Solar, Gonzalo; Libano, Iñaki

    2015-08-01

    The period between the end of the Early Pleistocene and the mid-Middle Pleistocene (roughly between 1.0 and 0.4 Ma BP) is of great interest in Western Europe. It witnessed several climatic oscillations and changes in the fauna, the demise of a hominin species and the appearance of another, along with important cultural and technological changes. Thus, the few available sites with these chronologies is vital to the understanding of the tempo and mode of these changes. Middle Pleistocene sites in the Northern Iberian Peninsula are very rare. Here we present the study of the site found at the Punta Lucero Quarry (Biscay province, Northern Iberian Peninsula), which includes for the first time the complete collection from the site. The fossil association from this site includes several ungulates, such as a Megacerine deer, Cervus elaphus, large bovids (likely both Bos primigenius and Bison sp. are present), Stephanorhinus sp., and carnivores, such as Homotherium latidens, Panthera gombaszoegensis, Canis mosbachensis and Vulpes sp. This association is typical of a middle Middle Pleistocene chronology and would be the oldest macro-mammal site in the Eastern Cantabrian region. This site would likely correspond to a chronology after Mode 1 technological complex and before the arrival of Mode 2 technology in this region. Thus, it offers a glimpse into the paleoecological conditions slightly prior to or contemporaneous with the first Acheulian makers in the northern fringe of the Iberian Peninsula.

  20. Early Cretaceous climate change (Hauterivian - Early Aptian): Learning from the past to prevent modern reefs decline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godet, Alexis; Bodin, Stéphane; Adatte, Thierry; Föllmi, Karl B.

    2010-05-01

    In the last decades, the anthropogenic increase pCO2atm has been considered as one of the main contributors for the decline of modern coral reefs, and nearly 60% of these marine ecosystems are presently threatened (Bryant et al., 1998). Interactions between anthropogenic change and reef growth can, however, not be reduced to a single factor, and it is essential to look at the Earth's history to understand and counterbalance. During the Early Cretaceous, enhanced pCO2atm may have been responsible, at least in part, for the demise of the carbonate platform along the northern margin of the Tethys through climatic feedback mechanisms. From the Hauterivian to the Early Aptian, increased rainfalls are documented from the clay-mineral association, by a change from a smectite-dominated (most of the Hauterivian), to a kaolinite-dominated assemblage (latest Hauterivian up to the early Late Barremian). This switch is dated to the Pseudothurmannia ohmi ammonozone in the Vocontian Trough of southeastern France (Angles section, Godet et al., 2008). It is immediately followed in time by major nutrient input, as is illustrated by the substantial increase in phosphorus accumulation rates (PAR), not only in this section, but also in the Ultrahelvetic area of Switzerland and in the Umbria-Marche basin of Italy (Bodin et al., 2006). On the other hand, the remainder of the Hauterivian is characterized by PAR mean values characteristic of mesotrophic conditions, whereas the Late Barremian witnesses the return to oligotrophic environments (lower PAR values). Synchronously, these perturbations are mirrored on the platform by changes in the type of carbonate ecosystems. Indeed, a stronger continental runoff, and a subsequent input in the oceanic domain of nutrients (e.g., phosphorus) and clastic material modified marine palaeoenvironmental conditions and triggered changes in ecosystems. A unique archive of the Early Cretaceous carbonate platform is preserved in the Helvetic Alps, where the

  1. Data from: Testing models of speciation from genome sequences: divergence and asymmetric admixture in Island Southeast Asian Sus species during the Plio-Pleistocene climatic fluctuations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frantz, L.A.F.; Madsen, O.; Megens, H.J.W.C.; Groenen, M.; Lohse, H.

    2014-01-01

    In many temperate regions, ice ages promoted range contractions into refugia resulting in divergence (and potentially speciation), while warmer periods led to range expansions and hybridization. However, the impact these climatic oscillations had in many parts of the tropics remains elusive. Here,

  2. Testing models of speciation from genome sequences: divergence and asymmetric admixture in Island Southeast Asian Sus species during the Plio-Pleistocene climatic fluctuations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frantz, L.A.F.; Madsen, O.; Megens, H.J.W.C.; Groenen, M.; Lohse, H.

    2014-01-01

    In many temperate regions, ice ages promoted range contractions into refugia resulting in divergence (and potentially speciation), while warmer periods led to range expansions and hybridization. However, the impact these climatic oscillations had in many parts of the tropics remains elusive. Here,

  3. Demographically idiosyncratic responses to climate change and rapid Pleistocene diversification of the walnut genus Juglans (Juglandaceae) revealed by whole-genome sequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei-Ning Bai; Peng-Cheng Yan; Bo-Wen Zhang; Keith E. Woeste; Kui Lin; Da-Yong. Zhang

    2018-01-01

    Whether species demography and diversification are driven primarily by extrinsic environmental changes such as climatic oscillations in the Quaternary or by intrinsic biological interactions like coevolution between antagonists is a matter of active debate. In fact, their relative importance can be assessed by tracking past population fluctuations over considerable...

  4. Missourian (early Late Pennsylvanian) climate in Midcontinent North America

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schutter, S.R.; Heckel, P.H.

    1985-06-01

    The abrupt decrease in mineable coals from Desmoinesian to Missourian rocks in Midcontinent North America has been related by several lines of evidence to the probability that Missourian climate became at least seasonally drier than Desmoinesian climate. This represents a transition from the equatorial Desmoinesian rainforest climate to the arid Permian climate, as North America moved northward from the equator. This change is reflected in the progression of evaporites from western Colorado in the Desmoinesian to Kansas in the Permian. Direct climatic evidence from soils in two Missourian shales deposited at low stands of sea-level includes caliche horizons, incompletely leached mixed-layer clays. Less direct climatic evidence includes the greater proportion of marine limestone deposited at intermediate sea-level stands in the Missourian than in the Desmoinesian part of the sequence, in conjunction with the greater abundance and thickness of oolite and shore-line facies in Missourian limestones than in Desmoinesian counterparts. This probably reflects increasing dryness of the climate, which would have led to decreased detrital influx and increased salinity as rainfall and runoff diminished. Indirect climatic evidence in offshore black phosphatic shales deposited at highest sea-level stands involves possible seasonality in organic and phosphatic laminations, related to periodicity of upwelling in the tropical trade-wide belt under the strong monsoonal influence of Pangaea. Mid-continent Missourian climates probably ranged from tropical monsoon to tropical savanna or hot steppe, all having wet-dry seasonality. The coincident extinctions of conodont, brachiopod, and other marine genera as well as the loss of swamp lycopods at the end of the Desmoinesian suggest the possibility that a greater than usual drop in sea level affected both realms at this time, while the climate was becoming drier. 91 references.

  5. Modern indoor climate research in Denmark from 1962 to the early 1990s

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, I; Gyntelberg, F

    2011-01-01

    Modern, holistic indoor climate research started with the formation of an interdisciplinary 'Indoor Climate Research Group' in 1962 at the Institute of Hygiene, University of Aarhus, Denmark. After some years, other groups started similar research in Denmark and Sweden, and later - after the Firs....... PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: The review may be of interest to indoor climate researchers who want to know more about the early development of research on this multidisciplinary subject, as it emerged in a small country that undertook pioneering studies....

  6. Pleistocene megafaunal interaction networks became more vulnerable after human arrival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pires, Mathias M; Koch, Paul L; Fariña, Richard A; de Aguiar, Marcus A M; dos Reis, Sérgio F; Guimarães, Paulo R

    2015-09-07

    The end of the Pleistocene was marked by the extinction of almost all large land mammals worldwide except in Africa. Although the debate on Pleistocene extinctions has focused on the roles of climate change and humans, the impact of perturbations depends on properties of ecological communities, such as species composition and the organization of ecological interactions. Here, we combined palaeoecological and ecological data, food-web models and community stability analysis to investigate if differences between Pleistocene and modern mammalian assemblages help us understand why the megafauna died out in the Americas while persisting in Africa. We show Pleistocene and modern assemblages share similar network topology, but differences in richness and body size distributions made Pleistocene communities significantly more vulnerable to the effects of human arrival. The structural changes promoted by humans in Pleistocene networks would have increased the likelihood of unstable dynamics, which may favour extinction cascades in communities facing extrinsic perturbations. Our findings suggest that the basic aspects of the organization of ecological communities may have played an important role in major extinction events in the past. Knowledge of community-level properties and their consequences to dynamics may be critical to understand past and future extinctions. © 2015 The Author(s).

  7. Pleistocene Palaeoart of Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert G. Bednarik

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available This comprehensive review of all currently known Pleistocene rock art of Africa shows that the majority of sites are located in the continent’s south, but that the petroglyphs at some of them are of exceptionally great antiquity. Much the same applies to portable palaeoart of Africa. The current record is clearly one of paucity of evidence, in contrast to some other continents. Nevertheless, an initial synthesis is attempted, and some preliminary comparisons with the other continents are attempted. Certain parallels with the existing record of southern Asia are defined.

  8. Record of environmental and climatic changes in middle Pleistocene sediments from Łuków (eastern Poland on the basis of plant macroremains analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stachowicz-Rybka Renata

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Lacustrine sediments at the Łuków site bear a record of the Ferdynandovian interglacial, correlated with Marine Isotope Stage (MIS 13-15, including two warm periods of interglacial rank (climatostratigraphic units Ferdynandovian 1 and 2 separated by cooling/glaciation (Ferdynandovian 1/2. On the basis of plant macroremains analysis, the type of local vegetation in the lake and its surroundings as well as changes in climate, trophic conditions and water level were reconstructed in detail. Ferdynandovian 1 was a time of development of tall sedge swamps. The presence of Najas marina and N. minor also suggests high levels of eutrophication, particularly in the younger part of the climatic optimum. The occurrence of Zannichellia palustris indicates habitats of variable water level and high salt content. In the terminocratic phase of Ferdynandovian 1, the communities showed the reoccurrence of Betula nana, B. humilis and Larix sp., the disappearance of thermophilous trees, and the intensification of succession processes linked to climate cooling. In the cool Ferdynandovian 1/2, Betula nana and Cenococcum geophilum increased their frequencies, most likely due to enhanced supply of mineral matter to the basin. During Ferdynandovian 2, the next climate warming of interglacial rank, communities of aquatic vegetation with the highest share of thermophilous taxa included the extinct Aldrowanda borysthenica, Brasenia borysthenica, and Scirpus atroviroides, as well as Cyperus glomeratus, a species not presently found in the flora of Poland. Another cooling in the Sanian 2 (Elsterian 2 glaciation is indicated by the development of peat communities, with numerous Carex sp., Menyanthes trifoliata, Eriophorum vaginatum, and Andromeda polifolia, accompanied by the extinct Carex paucifloroides, Caulinia macrosperma, and Potamogeton praemaackianus.

  9. Multilocus phylogeography of a widespread savanna-woodland adapted rodent reveals the influence of Pleistocene geomorphology and climate change in Africa's Zambezi region

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    McDonough, M. M.; Šumbera, R.; Mazoch, V.; Ferguson, A. W.; Phillips, C. D.; Bryja, Josef

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 24, č. 20 (2015), s. 5248-5266 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/0983; GA ČR GA15-20229S Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : climate variability * Gerbilliscus * historical biogeography * megadroughts * mito-nuclear discordance * palaeodistributional modelling * southern Africa Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 5.947, year: 2015

  10. Potentials and pitfalls of depth profile (10Be), burial isochron (26Al/10Be) and palaeomagnetic techniques for dating Early Pleistocene terrace deposits of the Moselle valley (Germany)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rixhon, Gilles; Cordier, Stéphane; May, Simon Matthias; Kelterbaum, Daniel; Szemkus, Nina; Keulertz, Rebecca; Dunai, Tibor; Binnie, Steven; Hambach, Ulrich; Scheidt, Stephanie; Brueckner, Helmut

    2016-04-01

    Throughout the river network of the Rhenish Massif the so-called main terraces complex (MTC) forms the morphological transition between a wide upper palaeovalley and a deeply incised lower valley. The youngest level of this complex (YMT), directly located at the edge of the incised valley, represents a dominant geomorphic feature; it is often used as a reference level to identify the beginning of the main middle Pleistocene incision episode (Demoulin & Hallot, 2009). Although the main terraces are particularly well preserved in the lower Moselle valley, a questionable age of ca. 800 ka is assumed for the YMT, mainly based on the uncertain extrapolation of controversially interpreted palaeomagnetic data obtained in the Rhine valley. In this study, we applied terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide (TCN) dating (10Be/26Al) and palaeomagnetic dating to Moselle fluvial sediments of the MTC. To unravel the spatio-temporal characteristics of the Pleistocene evolution of the valley, several sites along the lower Moselle were sampled following two distinct TCN dating strategies: depth profiles where the original terrace (palaeo-) surface is well preserved and did not experience a major post-depositional burial (e.g., loess cover); and the isochron technique, where the sediment thickness exceeds 4.5-5 m. One terrace deposit was sampled for both approaches (reference site). In addition, palaeomagnetic sampling was systematically performed in each terrace sampled for TCN measurements. The TCN dating techniques show contrasting results for our reference site. Three main issues are observed for the depth profile method: (i) an inability of the modeled profile to constrain the 10Be concentration of the uppermost sample; (ii) an overestimated density value as model output; and (iii) a probable concentration steady state of the terrace deposits. By contrast, the isochron method yields a burial age estimate of 1.26 +0.29/-0.25 Ma, although one sample showed a depleted 26Al/10Be ratio

  11. Topical Collection: Climate-change research by early-career hydrogeologists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Re, Viviana; Maldaner, Carlos H.; Gurdak, Jason J.; Leblanc, Marc; Resende, Tales Carvalho; Stigter, Tibor Y.

    2018-05-01

    Scientific outreach, international networking, collaboration and adequate courses are needed in both developed and developing countries to enable early-career hydrogeologists to promote long-term multidisciplinary approaches to cope with climate-change issues and emphasize the importance of groundwater in a global strategy for adaptation. One such collaboration has involved the Early Career Hydrogeologists' Network of the International Association of Hydrogeologists (ECHN-IAH) and the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme's (IHP) Groundwater Resources Assessment under the Pressures of Humanity and Climate Changes (GRAPHIC) project. This collaboration seeks to foster the education and involvement of the future generation of water leaders in the debate over groundwater and climate change.

  12. High population connectivity and Pleistocene range expansion in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nuclear markers (ATPSα, ATPSβ, ANT, SRPS4, TBP, LTRS and ZMP) showed no sequence variation. Bullia rhodostoma exhibited shallow ... from these refugial regions. Keywords: cytochrome oxidase I, demographic history, Pleistocene climatic changes, population genetic structure, sandy beach ecosystems, sea level ...

  13. Late Pleistocene Vegetation, Climate and Relative Sea Level Changes in the Southeastern Brazilian Coast, Based on C and N Isotopes and Bio Indicator Analysis of Mangrove Organic Matter

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pessenda, L. C.R.; Vidotto, E.; Buso, Jr., A. A.; Assarini, Jr., J. P.; Bendassollia, J. A. [Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture (CENA), University of Sao Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, Sao Paulo (Brazil); De Oliveira, P. E. [University of Guarulhos (UNG), Guarulhos, Sao Paulo (Brazil); Macias, F. [' ' Luiz de Queiroz' ' College of Agriculture/USP, Piracicaba, Sao Paulo (Brazil); Ricardi-Branco, F. [University of Campinas - Geosciences Institute, Campinas, Sao Paulo (Brazil)

    2013-07-15

    On the southeastern Brazilian coast, mangrove organic matter records have been studied by C and N isotopes, pollen and diatom analysis to reconstruct 40 ka of vegetation and climatic history. The {delta}{sup 13}C and {delta}{sup 15}N presented more depleted values from 40 to 19 ka BP. The high C/N ratios and depleted isotopic values indicate the predominance of C3 land plants in the location presently occupied by the mangrove vegetation, and a lower sea level than today. The presence of pollen of Ilex, Weinmannia, Symplocos, Drimys and Podocarpus suggest a colder and more humid climate than present. From 19 to 2.2 ka BP a sedimentary hiatus is associated with a sea level rise. The presence of mangrove in its present position since at least 2.200 a BP and the return of the marine coastline are associated with the lowest C/N ratio, more enriched {delta}{sup 13}C and {delta}{sup 15}N values and the presence of marine diatoms. (author)

  14. Climate Change Decouples Drought from Early Wine Grape Harvests in France

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Benjamin I.; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.

    2016-01-01

    Across the world, wine grape phenology has advanced in recent decades, in step with climate-change-induced trends in temperature - the main driver of fruit maturation - and drought. Fully understanding how climate change contributes to changes in harvest dates, however, requires analysing wine grape phenology and its relationship to climate over a longer-term context, including data predating anthropogenic interference in the climate system. Here, we investigate the climatic controls of wine grape harvest dates from 1600-2007 in France and Switzerland using historical harvest and climate data. Early harvests occur with warmer temperatures (minus 6 days per degree Centigrade) and are delayed by wet conditions (plus 0.07 days per millimeter; plus 1.68 days per PDSI (Palmer drought severity index)) during spring and summer. In recent decades (1981-2007), however, the relationship between harvest timing and drought has broken down. Historically, high summer temperatures in Western Europe, which would hasten fruit maturation, required drought conditions to generate extreme heat. The relationship between drought and temperature in this region, however, has weakened in recent decades and enhanced warming from anthropogenic greenhouse gases can generate the high temperatures needed for early harvests without drought. Our results suggest that climate change has fundamentally altered the climatic drivers of early wine grape harvests in France, with possible ramifications for viticulture management and wine quality.

  15. Early Eocene climatic optimum: Environmental impact on the North Iberian continental margin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Payros, A.; Ortiz, S.; Millán, I.; Arostegi, J.; Orue-Etxebarria, X.; Apellaniz, E.

    2015-01-01

    The early Eocene climatic optimum, which constituted the peak of the long-term early Cenozoic global warming, had a significant impact on the environmental evolution of terrestrial and oceanic areas. Surprisingly, however, its influence on continental margins is poorly known. New insights are

  16. Pleistocene vertebrates of the Yukon Territory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harington, C. R.

    2011-08-01

    Unglaciated parts of the Yukon constitute one of the most important areas in North America for yielding Pleistocene vertebrate fossils. Nearly 30 vertebrate faunal localities are reviewed spanning a period of about 1.6 Ma (million years ago) to the close of the Pleistocene some 10 000 BP (radiocarbon years before present, taken as 1950). The vertebrate fossils represent at least 8 species of fishes, 1 amphibian, 41 species of birds and 83 species of mammals. Dominant among the large mammals are: steppe bison ( Bison priscus), horse ( Equus sp.), woolly mammoth ( Mammuthus primigenius), and caribou ( Rangifer tarandus) - signature species of the Mammoth Steppe fauna ( Fig. 1), which was widespread from the British Isles, through northern Europe, and Siberia to Alaska, Yukon and adjacent Northwest Territories. The Yukon faunas extend from Herschel Island in the north to Revenue Creek in the south and from the Alaskan border in the west to Ketza River in the east. The Yukon holds evidence of the earliest-known people in North America. Artifacts made from bison, mammoth and caribou bones from Bluefish Caves, Old Crow Basin and Dawson City areas show that people had a substantial knowledge of making and using bone tools at least by 25 000 BP, and possibly as early as 40 000 BP. A suggested chronological sequence of Yukon Pleistocene vertebrates ( Table 1) facilitates comparison of selected faunas and indicates the known duration of various taxa.

  17. Plio-Pleistocene phylogeography of the Southeast Asian Blue Panchax killifish, Aplocheilus panchax

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Gary R.; Barlow, Axel; Rüber, Lukas; Hui Tan, Heok; Nugroho, Estu; Wowor, Daisy; Mohd Nor, Siti Azizah; Herder, Fabian; Muchlisin, Zainal A.; de Bruyn, Mark

    2017-01-01

    The complex climatic and geological history of Southeast Asia has shaped this region’s high biodiversity. In particular, sea level fluctuations associated with repeated glacial cycles during the Pleistocene both facilitated, and limited, connectivity between populations. In this study, we used data from two mitochondrial and three anonymous nuclear markers to determine whether a fresh/brackish water killifish, Aplocheilus panchax, Hamilton, 1822, could be used to further understand how climatic oscillations and associated sea level fluctuations have shaped the distribution of biota within this region, and whether such patterns show evidence of isolation within palaeodrainage basins. Our analyses revealed three major mitochondrial clades within A. panchax. The basal divergence of A. panchax mitochondrial lineages was approximately 3.5 Ma, whilst the subsequent divergence timings of these clades occurred early Pleistocene (~2.6 Ma), proceeding through the Pleistocene. Continuous phylogeographic analysis showed a clear west-east dispersal followed by rapid radiation across Southeast Asia. Individuals from Krabi, just north of the Isthmus of Kra, were more closely related to the Indian lineages, providing further evidence for a freshwater faunal disjunction at the Isthmus of Kra biogeographic barrier. Our results suggest that Sulawesi, across the Wallace Line, was colonised relatively recently (~30 ka). Nuclear DNA is less geographically structured, although Mantel tests indicated that nuclear genetic distances were correlated with geographic proximity. Overall, these results imply that recent gene flow, as opposed to historical isolation, has been the key factor determining patterns of nuclear genetic variation in A. panchax, however, some evidence of historical isolation is retained within the mitochondrial genome. Our study further validates the existence of a major biogeographic boundary at the Kra Isthmus, and also demonstrates the use of widely distributed

  18. FOSSIL REPTILES FROM THE PLEISTOCENE HOMO-BEARING LOCALITY OF BUIA (ERITREA, NORTHERN DANAKIL DEPRESSION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MASSIMO DELFINO

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available The early to early-Middle Pleistocene fossil assemblage form the Buia area (Northern Danakil Depression, Eritrea hosts, along with Homo and several other large mammal taxa, the following reptiles: Nile Crocodile, Crocodylus niloticus, Serrated Hinged Terrapin, Pelusios cf. P. sinuatus, Nile Monitor, Varanus niloticus and African Rock Python, Python gr. sebae. All the identified taxa belong to living species. At present, these taxa do not occur in the Northern Danakil depression since it is an arid area. P. sinuatus is not a member of the Eritrean herpetofauna. Although the marked preponderance of the crocodile remains is probably connected to the taphonomy of the sites and the collecting methods used, the ecological value of the reptile fauna corroborates that of the mammals, in indicating a lacustrine or fluvio-deltaic palaeoenvironment and a tropical/subtropical or even sub-Sahelic climate. The Buia remains represent the first reported Eritrean palaeoherpetofauna. 

  19. Neanderthal and Anatomically Modern Human interaction with Abrupt Late Pleistocene Environments - the data is finally good enough to talk about climate change!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blockley, Simon; Schreve, Danielle

    2015-04-01

    The timing and nature of the appearance of Anatomically Modern Humans (AMH) in Europe, their interaction with, and eventual morphological replacement of Neanderthals (despite some shared genetic heritage) has been a matter of intense debate within archaeology for a generation. This period, often termed the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transition occurs in the latter part of Marine Isotope Stage Three and in recent decades archaeological interest has been complemented by the input of palaeoclimate scientists, over the role of abrupt climate change in this process. This was due to the recognition from ice core and marine proxy archives, in particular, of periods if intense cooling, correlated to the marine record of Heinrich ice rafted debris layers from the Atlantic. As a result of these collaborations between the archaeological and palaeoenvironmental communities various drivers have been proposed for the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic Transition that include: (1) resource competition between two species occupying similar niches; (2) the impact of repeated cycles of Heinrich event cooling, leading to the decline and eventual disappearance of the Neanderthal populations, leaving a new region open for AMH exploitation; and (3) catastrophic impacts of large volcanic eruptions on Neanderthal populations. Attempts to address the above hypotheses have been dogged by the chronological precision available for a number of key archives. The accuracy of many of the radiocarbon ages that underpin the chronology for both Neanderthal and AMH archaeological sites has been questioned1. This has been exacerbated by uncertainties over the influence of variability in the radiocarbon marine reservoir effect on marine palaeoclimate records and a marine dominated radiocarbon calibration curve. Additionally, the counting uncertainties of the master Greenland palaeoclimate archives are also large by this time, meaning palaeoclimate interpretation can be equivocal. However, several research

  20. Quantification of climate and vegetation from southern African Middle Stone Age sites - an application using Late Pleistocene plant material from Sibudu, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruch, Angela A.; Sievers, Christine; Wadley, Lyn

    2012-06-01

    In southern Africa numerous Middle Stone Age (MSA) sites document important steps in technological and behavioural development leading to significant changes in the lifeways of modern humans. To assess whether these cultural changes and developments may be related to environmental changes we need to ascertain past environments. To do this we apply a new quantitative method, the GIS-based Coexistence Approach (CAGIS), on fossil plant material from the MSA site Sibudu, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Previous qualitative environmental interpretations of the fossil fauna and flora of the site remain ambiguous. Because much of the material is anthropogenically introduced, it is difficult to distinguish between the effects of natural changes in the local vegetation and behavioural changes of the people that inhabited the shelter. CAGIS can be applied to such biased assemblages and seems to be an adequate method to directly quantify palaeoclimate and vegetation parameters at an archaeological site. The CAGIS analysis shows that during the Howiesons Poort (HP) Industry winters were slightly colder and drier than present, whereas during summer, temperatures and precipitation were similar to today. Post-HP winters were drier and colder than present, presumably colder than during the HP. Summer temperatures remained the same, but summer precipitation decreased from the HP to post-HP. Vegetation cover was less than today, may be even less than during the HP. The late MSA was observably warmer than the older periods, especially during winter. At the same time summer precipitation slightly increased and vegetation became more dense, but still remained generally open similar to today's anthropogenic landscape. Generally, climatic changes are most pronouncedly reflected in winter temperature parameters, especially in minimum winter temperatures, and to a lesser extent by changes in summer precipitation. The observed ecological trends seem to be affected mainly by variations through

  1. Glaciolacustrine deposits formed in an ice-dammed tributary valley in the south-central Pyrenees: New evidence for late Pleistocene climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sancho, Carlos; Arenas, Concha; Pardo, Gonzalo; Peña-Monné, José Luis; Rhodes, Edward J.; Bartolomé, Miguel; García-Ruiz, José M.; Martí-Bono, Carlos

    2018-04-01

    Combined geomorphic features, stratigraphic characteristics and sedimentologic interpretation, coupled with optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dates, of a glacio-fluvio-lacustrine sequence (Linás de Broto, northern Spain) provide new information to understand the palaeoenvironmental significance of dynamics of glacier systems in the south-central Pyrenees during the Last Glacial Cycle (≈130 ka to 14 ka). The Linás de Broto depositional system consisted of a proglacial lake fed primarily by meltwater streams emanating from the small Sorrosal glacier and dammed by a lateral moraine of the Ara trunk glacier. The resulting glacio-fluvio-lacustrine sequence, around 55 m thick, is divided into five lithological units consisting of braided fluvial (gravel deposits), lake margin (gravel and sand deltaic deposits) and distal lake (silt and clay laminites) facies associations. Evolution of the depositional environment reflects three phases of progradation of a high-energy braided fluvial system separated by two phases of rapid expansion of the lake. Fluvial progradation occurred during short periods of ice melting. Lake expansion concurred with ice-dam growth of the trunk glacier. The first lake expansion occurred over a time range between 55 ± 9 ka and 49 ± 11 ka, and is consistent with the age of the Viu lateral moraine (49 ± 8 ka), which marks the maximum areal extent of the Ara glacier during the Last Glacial Cycle. These dates confirm that the maximum areal extent of the glacier occurred during Marine Isotope Stages 4 and 3 in the south-central Pyrenees, thus before the Last Glacial Maximum. The evolution of the Linás de Broto depositional system during this maximum glacier extent was modulated by climate oscillations in the northern Iberian Peninsula, probably related to latitudinal shifts of the atmospheric circulation in the southern North-Atlantic Ocean, and variations in summer insolation intensity.

  2. Is the global rise of asthma an early impact of anthropogenic climate change?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul John Beggs

    Full Text Available The increase in asthma incidence, prevalence, and morbidity over recent decades presents a significant challenge to public health. Pollen is an important trigger of some types of asthma, and both pollen quantity and season depend on climatic and meteorological variables. Over the same period as the global rise in asthma, there have been considerable increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration and global average surface temperature. We hypothesize anthropogenic climate change as a plausible contributor to the rise in asthma. Greater concentrations of carbon dioxide and higher temperatures may increase pollen quantity and induce longer pollen seasons. Pollen allergenicity can also increase as a result of these changes in climate. Exposure in early life to a more allergenic environment may also provoke the development of other atopic conditions, such as eczema and allergic rhinitis. Although the etiology of asthma is complex, the recent global rise in asthma could be an early health effect of anthropogenic climate change.

  3. Palaeobotanical data for climate change during the late Miocene - early Pliocene in Western Bulgaria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hristova, Viktoria; Ivanov, Dimiter; Bozukov, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    The Coexistence Approach (CA) analysis was applied to plant macro- and microfossils from the Late Miocene to Early Pliocene sites in western Bulgaria to obtain quantitative climate data and reconstruct climate dynamics. Calculated new values for the Sofia macro flora confirmed a warm-temperate and humid climate with mean annual temperature (MAT) between 12–170C, mean temperature of the warmest month (WMT) 23.6–280C, mean temperature of the coldest month (CMT) 0–50C and mean annual precipitation (MAP) 843–1179 mm. This is consistent with the climatic parameters obtained from the microflora – MAT 13.6–16, WMT 23.6–27.9, CMT 3.7–6 and MAP 803–1308mm. All presented data are in good accordance with other regional palaeoclimate reconstructions from Bulgarian and Europaean floras. Key words: Late Miocene–Early Pliocene, palaeoclimate, Sofia Basin

  4. Hominin responses to environmental changes during the Middle Pleistocene in central and southern Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orain, R.; Lebreton, V.; Russo Ermolli, E.; Sémah, A.-M.; Nomade, S.; Shao, Q.; Bahain, J.-J.; Thun Hohenstein, U.; Peretto, C.

    2013-03-01

    The palaeobotanical record of early Palaeolithic sites from Western Europe indicates that hominins settled in different kinds of environments. During the "mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT)", from about 1 to 0.6 Ma, the transition from 41- to 100-ka dominant climatic oscillations, occurring within a long-term cooling trend, was associated with an aridity crisis which strongly modified the ecosystems. Starting from the MPT the more favourable climate of central and southern Italy provided propitious environmental conditions for long-term human occupations even during the glacial times. In fact, the human strategy of territory occupation was certainly driven by the availabilities of resources. Prehistoric sites such as Notarchirico (ca. 680-600 ka), La Pineta (ca. 600-620 ka), Guado San Nicola (ca. 380-350 ka) or Ceprano (ca. 345-355 ka) testify to a preferential occupation of the central and southern Apennines valleys during interglacial phases, while later interglacial occupations were oriented towards the coastal plains, as attested by the numerous settlements of the Roma Basin (ca. 300 ka). Faunal remains indicate that human subsistence behaviours benefited from a diversity of exploitable ecosystems, from semi-open to closed environments. In central and southern Italy, several palynological records have already illustrated the regional- and local-scale vegetation dynamic trends. During the Middle Pleistocene climate cycles, mixed mesophytic forests developed during the interglacial periods and withdrew in response to increasing aridity during the glacial episodes. New pollen data from the Boiano Basin (Molise, Italy) attest to the evolution of vegetation and climate between MIS 13 and 9 (ca. 500 to 300 ka). In this basin the persistence of high edaphic humidity, even during the glacial phases, could have favoured the establishment of a refuge area for the arboreal flora and provided subsistence resources for the animal and hominin communities during the Middle

  5. Hominin responses to environmental changes during the Middle Pleistocene in central and southern Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Orain

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The palaeobotanical record of early Palaeolithic sites from Western Europe indicates that hominins settled in different kinds of environments. During the "mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT", from about 1 to 0.6 Ma, the transition from 41- to 100-ka dominant climatic oscillations, occurring within a long-term cooling trend, was associated with an aridity crisis which strongly modified the ecosystems. Starting from the MPT the more favourable climate of central and southern Italy provided propitious environmental conditions for long-term human occupations even during the glacial times. In fact, the human strategy of territory occupation was certainly driven by the availabilities of resources. Prehistoric sites such as Notarchirico (ca. 680–600 ka, La Pineta (ca. 600–620 ka, Guado San Nicola (ca. 380–350 ka or Ceprano (ca. 345–355 ka testify to a preferential occupation of the central and southern Apennines valleys during interglacial phases, while later interglacial occupations were oriented towards the coastal plains, as attested by the numerous settlements of the Roma Basin (ca. 300 ka. Faunal remains indicate that human subsistence behaviours benefited from a diversity of exploitable ecosystems, from semi-open to closed environments. In central and southern Italy, several palynological records have already illustrated the regional- and local-scale vegetation dynamic trends. During the Middle Pleistocene climate cycles, mixed mesophytic forests developed during the interglacial periods and withdrew in response to increasing aridity during the glacial episodes. New pollen data from the Boiano Basin (Molise, Italy attest to the evolution of vegetation and climate between MIS 13 and 9 (ca. 500 to 300 ka. In this basin the persistence of high edaphic humidity, even during the glacial phases, could have favoured the establishment of a refuge area for the arboreal flora and provided subsistence resources for the animal and hominin communities

  6. Early Childhood Directors as Socializers of Emotional Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zinsser, Katherine M.; Denham, Susanne A.; Curby, Timothy W.; Chazan-Cohen, Rachel

    2016-01-01

    Early childhood centres are vibrant social communities where child and adult emotions are integral to learning. Previous research has focused on teaching practices that support children's social-emotional learning; fewer studies have attended to relevant centre-level factors, such as the emotional leadership practices of the centre director. The…

  7. Are fish outside their usual ranges early indicators of climate-driven range shifts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogarty, Hannah E; Burrows, Michael T; Pecl, Gretta T; Robinson, Lucy M; Poloczanska, Elvira S

    2017-05-01

    Shifts in species ranges are a global phenomenon, well known to occur in response to a changing climate. New species arriving in an area may become pest species, modify ecosystem structure, or represent challenges or opportunities for fisheries and recreation. Early detection of range shifts and prompt implementation of any appropriate management strategies is therefore crucial. This study investigates whether 'first sightings' of marine species outside their normal ranges could provide an early warning of impending climate-driven range shifts. We examine the relationships between first sightings and marine regions defined by patterns of local climate velocities (calculated on a 50-year timescale), while also considering the distribution of observational effort (i.e. number of sampling days recorded with biological observations in global databases). The marine trajectory regions include climate 'source' regions (areas lacking connections to warmer areas), 'corridor' regions (areas where moving isotherms converge), and 'sink' regions (areas where isotherms locally disappear). Additionally, we investigate the latitudinal band in which first sightings were recorded, and species' thermal affiliations. We found that first sightings are more likely to occur in climate sink and 'divergent' regions (areas where many rapid and diverging climate trajectories pass through) indicating a role of temperature in driving changes in marine species distributions. The majority of our fish first sightings appear to be tropical and subtropical species moving towards high latitudes, as would be expected in climate warming. Our results indicate that first sightings are likely related to longer-term climatic processes, and therefore have potential use to indicate likely climate-driven range shifts. The development of an approach to detect impending range shifts at an early stage will allow resource managers and researchers to better manage opportunities resulting from range

  8. Molluscs as evidence for a late Pleistocene and early Holocene humid period in the southern coastal desert of Peru (14.5°S)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mächtle, Bertil; Unkel, Ingmar; Eitel, Bernhard; Kromer, Bernd; Schiegl, Solveig

    2010-01-01

    The southern Peruvian coastal desert around Palpa, southern Peru (14.5°S) is currently characterized by hyper-arid conditions. However, the presence of two species of molluscs ( Scutalus, Pupoides) and desert-loess deposits indicates the past development of semi-desert and grassland ecosystems caused by a displacement of the eastern desert margin due to hydrological changes. Radiocarbon dating shows that the transition to a semi-arid climate in the southern Peruvian coastal desert took place during the Greenland interstadial 1, ˜ 13.5 cal ka BP. At the beginning of the Holocene, the mollusc fauna vanished due to increasing humidity and the development of grasslands. Dust particles were fixed by the grasses, as indicated by abundant Poaceae phytoliths, and desert loess was formed. The humid period we observe here is out of phase with the palaeoenvironmental records from the Titicaca region, which indicates dry conditions at that time. This paper offers a new idea for this contradiction: an orbitally driven meridional shift of the Bolivian high might have altered the moisture supply across the Andes.

  9. THE WIND AS AN IMPORTANT ASPECT AND ITS IMPACT ON POPULATION TRENDS AND DEMOGRAPHIC CONDITIONS IN TRIPOLITANIA DURING LATE PLEISTOCENE/EARLY HOLOCENE

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    Amran Khalifa

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The vast majority of Tripolitania sites are open surface sites, but after the introduction of paleoclimatology in archaeological research during 1980’s, even with the insufficient amount of research, we were given a new vision of the archaeology of the region in regards to technology, adaptation, and behaviourism. The archaeological study of the region has developed within its own right, producing individual characteristics, including the sub-regional parts of Northern Africa. From the 1990’s up through today, the archaeology of Tripolitania has benefited from these new developments with the introduction of climatology inclusive of geology, physical anthropology with genetic data, and the new methods of chronology and interpretations of cultural activities. This article will attempt to show the importance of the introduction of climatology and geomorphology in the study of surface sites where systematic excavations for whatever reasons had not been possible, yet certainly preferred. The geographical positioning of the sites in correlation with their surroundings, and the appearance and composition of the sediments in context with the archaeological artefacts, could provide us with valuable information about the connection between the cultures that inhabited this region. With these developments in research, we are now able to trace the cultural evolution of Tripolitania by paying particular attention to periods impacted by climate change (particularly wind, which had caused new geological and geomorphological conditions that forced the individuals of this culture to adapt in order to survive.

  10. Geomorphic and sedimentary responses of the Bull Creek Valley (Southern High Plains, USA) to Pleistocene and Holocene environmental change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arauza, Hanna M.; Simms, Alexander R.; Bement, Leland C.; Carter, Brian J.; Conley, Travis; Woldergauy, Ammanuel; Johnson, William C.; Jaiswal, Priyank

    2016-01-01

    Fluvial geomorphology and stratigraphy often reflect past environmental and climate conditions. This study examines the response of Bull Creek, a small ephemeral creek in the Oklahoma panhandle, to environmental conditions through the late Pleistocene and Holocene. Fluvial terraces were mapped and their stratigraphy and sedimentology documented throughout the course of the main valley. Based on their elevations, terraces were broadly grouped into a late-Pleistocene fill terrace (T3) and two Holocene fill-cut terrace sets (T2 and T1). Terrace systems are marked by similar stratigraphies recording the general environmental conditions of the time. Sedimentary sequences preserved in terrace fills record the transition from a perennial fluvial system during the late glacial period and the Younger Dryas to a semiarid environment dominated by loess accumulation and punctuated by flood events during the middle to late Holocene. The highest rates of aeolian accumulation within the valley occurred during the early to middle Holocene. Our data provide significant new information regarding the late-Pleistocene and Holocene environmental history for this region, located between the well-studied Southern and Central High Plains of North America.

  11. Early Holocene climate oscillations recorded in three Greenland ice cores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Sune Olander; Vinther, Bo Møllesøe; Clausen, Henrik Brink

    2007-01-01

    around 9.3 ka before present, and the Preboreal Oscillation during the first centuries of the Holocene. For each of these sections, we present a d18O anomaly curve and a common accumulation signal that represents regional changes in the accumulation rate over the Greenland ice cap....... and accumulation anomalies that are common to the three cores in the Early Holocene (7.9–11.7 ka before present). Three time periods with significant and synchronous anomalies in the d18O and accumulation signals stand out: the well-known 8.2 ka event, an event of shorter duration but of almost similar amplitude...

  12. Discriminating Between Tectonic and Climatic Controls on Early Hominin Paleoenvironments From the Koobi Fora Region, Northeastern Turkana Basin, Kenya: Part I

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepre, C. J.; Quinn, R. L.

    2004-12-01

    Understanding controls on environmental records from Plio-Pleistocene Africa is critical for interpreting human origins. Recent geological studies from East Africa have focused on the relationship between Plio-Pleistocene patterns of hominin evolution, environmental change, and climate preserved in stratigraphic records of sedimentary basins (e.g. deMenocal, 2004; Wynn, 2004). Despite the fact that tectonics is a primary control on sedimentation in East African basins (e.g. Baker, 1986; Frostick, 1997), relatively few studies have either investigated its potential influence on early hominin evolution or attempted to discriminate between tectonic and climate controls on paleoenvironmental change. Presented is a study that explores these issues. Within the Koobi Fora Formation, between 4.0 and 2.5 Ma, environmental change is related to an overall trend of linear rates of tectonic subsidence. However, smaller-scale fluctuations in subsidence rates established lakes during times of increased subsidence followed by the transition to rivers during times of decreased subsidence and basin infilling (Feibel, 1994a, 2000). In contrast, environmental change during the period between 2.5 and 1.5 Ma was forced by changes in half-graben propagation, fault movement, and subsidence. This change is recorded within a stratigraphic sequence that is defined by major (erosional) boundary surface unconformities. The sequence is internally comprised of stable-lacustrine; stable-lacustrine, delta, and ephemeral-lacustrine; and fluvial environments of deposition. This environmental progression defines lowstand, transgressive, and highstand systems tracts respectively. Transition between systems tracts and depositional environments was controlled by rates of tectonic subsidence. The formation of stable-lacustrine environments of deposition during the lowstand systems tract was due to subsidence rates out-pacing sedimentation rates that was associated with a major tectonic event

  13. Early Adolescent Health Risk Behaviors, Conflict Resolution Strategies, and School Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaRusso, Maria; Selman, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Drawing upon an ethnically and socio-economically diverse sample of 323 7th grade students from twelve urban schools within one school district, this mixed method study examined early adolescents' self-reported health risk behaviors as related to their conflict resolution strategies and their school's conflict resolution climate. Survey data…

  14. California forests show early indications of both range shifts and local persistence under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Josep M. Serra-Diaz; Janet Franklin; Whalen W. Dillon; Alexandra D. Syphard; Frank W. Davis; Ross K. Meentemeyer

    2015-01-01

    Aim Forest regeneration data provide an early signal of the persistence and migration of tree species, so we investigated whether species shifts due to climate change exhibit a common signal of response or whether changes vary by species. Location California Floristic Province, United...

  15. Astrochronology of extreme global warming events during the early Eocene greenhouse climate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lauretano, V.

    2016-01-01

    The early Eocene represents an ideal case study to analyse the impact of enhanced global warming on the ocean-atmosphere system and the relationship between carbon cycling and climate. During this time interval, the Earth’s surface experienced a long-term warming trend that culminated in a period of

  16. The Sima de los Huesos (Burgos, northern Spain): palaeoenvironment and habitats of Homo heidelbergensis during the Middle Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, Nuria; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2011-06-01

    Interpreting how environmental dynamics respond to global climate change and how this has affected human evolution and dispersal is an on-going topic of debate. During the early Middle Pleistocene (˜0.6-0.4 Ma), as compared to earlier, environmental conditions were relatively more stable, with longer climatic cycles alternating between open and forested landscapes. During this interval, humans spread successfully providing an important number of fossil sites where fossils or tools are reported. The Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos (Burgos, northern Spain) site (Atapuerca-SH) is one of the earliest localities with hominin evidence in the European Middle Pleistocene, with the most important accumulation of Homo heidelbergensis so far. We have analyzed the abundant faunal record from Sima de los Huesos, which is mainly comprised of carnivores, in order to approach an interpretation of the palaeoenvironmental circumstances where these hominids inhabited within the Sierra. Other sites from Sierra de Atapuerca referred to the same Faunal Unit (FU 6), are roughly contemporaneous, and include important ungulates, which are here analyzed with Atapuerca-SH. Additional information provided by isotopic analysis helps elucidate the ancient ecology of taxa present in Sima de los Huesos allowing for an accurate portrayal of the setting in which humans lived. The timing of the spread of Homo heidelbergensis is dominated by a relative climatic and environmental stability and points to a landscape dominated by savannah-like open woodland.

  17. Ocean circulation in the southern Benguela region from the Pliocene to the Pleistocene: tracking Agulhas leakage into the SE Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrick, Benjamin; McClymont, Erin; Felder, Sojna; Leng, Melanie

    2013-04-01

    The transition from the warmth of the middle Pliocene to the large amplitude, 100 kyr glacial-interglacial cycles of the late Pleistocene provides a way to understand the forcings and impacts of regional and global climate change. Here, we investigate changes in ocean circulation over the period from 3.5 Ma to present using a marine sediment core, ODP Site 1087 (31o28'S, 15o19'E, 1374m water depth). ODP 1087 is located in the South-east Atlantic Ocean, outside the Benguela upwelling region. Its location allows investigation of the history of the heat and salt transfer to the Atlantic Ocean from the Indian Ocean ("Agulhas leakage"), which plays an important part in the global thermohaline circulation. It is not known how this transfer reacted to generally warmer global temperatures during the mid-Pliocene, nor to the transition to a globally cooler climate in the early Pleistocene. Our approach is to apply several organic geochemistry proxies and foraminiferal analyses to reconstruct the history of ODP 1087. These include the U37K' index to reconstruct sea surface temperatures, pigment analysis for understanding productivity changes, and foraminifera assemblage analysis to detect the presence of different water masses at the site. We have identified changes in SSTs and biological productivity that we argue to reflect shifts in the position of the Benguela upwelling cells, and a changing influence of Agulhas leakage. Our new data reveal a different organization in the Southeast Atlantic. It shows that during the Pliocene ODP 1087 was dominated by Benguela upwelling which had shifted south. We find no evidence for Agulhas leakage during the mid Pliocene, which could mean that Agulhas Leakage was severely reduced during the mid Pliocene. The implications of these results for understanding Plio-Pleistocene climate changes will be explored here.

  18. Early twenty-first-century droughts during the warmest climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Kogan

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The first 13 years of the twenty-first century have begun with a series of widespread, long and intensive droughts around the world. Extreme and severe-to-extreme intensity droughts covered 2%–6% and 7%–16% of the world land, respectively, affecting environment, economies and humans. These droughts reduced agricultural production, leading to food shortages, human health deterioration, poverty, regional disturbances, population migration and death. This feature article is a travelogue of the twenty-first-century global and regional droughts during the warmest years of the past 100 years. These droughts were identified and monitored with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration operational space technology, called vegetation health (VH, which has the longest period of observation and provides good data quality. The VH method was used for assessment of vegetation condition or health, including drought early detection and monitoring. The VH method is based on operational satellites data estimating both land surface greenness (NDVI and thermal conditions. The twenty-first-century droughts in the USA, Russia, Australia and Horn of Africa were intensive, long, covered large areas and caused huge losses in agricultural production, which affected food security and led to food riots in some countries. This research also investigates drought dynamics presenting no definite conclusion about drought intensification or/and expansion during the time of the warmest globe.

  19. Climate change implications and use of early warning systems for global dust storms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harriman, Lindsey M.

    2014-01-01

    With increased changes in land cover and global climate, early detection and warning of dust storms in conjunction with effective and widespread information broadcasts will be essential to the prevention and mitigation of future risks and impacts. Human activities, seasonal variations and long-term climatic patterns influence dust storms. More research is needed to analyse these factors of dust mobilisation to create more certainty for the fate of vulnerable populations and ecosystems in the future. Early warning and communication systems, when in place and effectively implemented, can offer some relief to these vulnerable areas. As an issue that affects many regions of the world, there is a profound need to understand the potential changes and ultimately create better early warning systems for dust storms.

  20. Pleistocene Palaeoart of the Americas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert G. Bednarik

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available In contrast to the great time depth of Pleistocene rock art and mobiliary ‘art’ in the four other continents, the available evidence from the Americas is very limited, and restricted at best to the last part of the final Pleistocene. A review of what has so far become available is hampered by a considerable burden of literature presenting material contended to be of the Ice Age, even of the Mesozoic in some cases, that needs to be sifted through to find a minute number of credible claims. Even the timing of the first colonization of the Americas remains unresolved, and the lack of clear-cut substantiation of palaeoart finds predating about 12,000 years bp is conspicuous. There are vague hints of earlier human presence, rendering it likely that archaeology has failed to define its manifestations adequately, and Pleistocene palaeoart remains almost unexplored at this stage.

  1. Fungal decomposition of terrestrial organic matter accelerated Early Jurassic climate warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pieńkowski, Grzegorz; Hodbod, Marta; Ullmann, Clemens V.

    2016-08-01

    Soils - constituting the largest terrestrial carbon pool - are vulnerable to climatic warming. Currently existing uncertainties regarding carbon fluxes within terrestrial systems can be addressed by studies of past carbon cycle dynamics and related climate change recorded in sedimentary successions. Here we show an example from the Early Jurassic (early Toarcian, c. 183 mya) marginal-marine strata from Poland, tracking the hinterland response to climatic changes through a super-greenhouse event. In contrast to anoxia-related enhanced carbon storage in coeval open marine environments, Total Organic Carbon (TOC) concentrations in the Polish successions are substantially reduced during this event. Increasing temperature favoured fungal-mediated decomposition of plant litter - specifically of normally resistant woody tissues. The associated injection of oxidized organic matter into the atmosphere corresponds to abrupt changes in standing vegetation and may have contributed significantly to the amplified greenhouse climate on Earth. The characteristic Toarcian signature of multiple warm pulses coinciding with rapidly decreasing carbon isotope ratios may in part be the result of a radical reduction of the terrestrial carbon pool as a response to climate change.

  2. Modern indoor climate research in Denmark from 1962 to the early 1990s: an eyewitness report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, I; Gyntelberg, F

    2011-06-01

    Modern, holistic indoor climate research started with the formation of an interdisciplinary 'Indoor Climate Research Group' in 1962 at the Institute of Hygiene, University of Aarhus, Denmark. After some years, other groups started similar research in Denmark and Sweden, and later - after the First International Indoor Air Symposium in Copenhagen 1978--this research spread to many countries and today it is carried out globally by probably 2000 scientists. This paper recounts the history of Danish indoor climate research, focusing on the three decades from the early 1960s to the founding of the Indoor Air journal in 1991. The aim of this paper is to summarize what was learned in those earlier years and to call to the attention of researchers in this area the need of multidisciplinary research, mingling epidemiological fact-finding field studies with climate chamber studies and laboratory investigations. The review may be of interest to indoor climate researchers who want to know more about the early development of research on this multidisciplinary subject, as it emerged in a small country that undertook pioneering studies. © 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

  3. Global situational awareness and early warning of high-consequence climate change.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Backus, George A.; Carr, Martin J.; Boslough, Mark Bruce Elrick

    2009-08-01

    Global monitoring systems that have high spatial and temporal resolution, with long observational baselines, are needed to provide situational awareness of the Earth's climate system. Continuous monitoring is required for early warning of high-consequence climate change and to help anticipate and minimize the threat. Global climate has changed abruptly in the past and will almost certainly do so again, even in the absence of anthropogenic interference. It is possible that the Earth's climate could change dramatically and suddenly within a few years. An unexpected loss of climate stability would be equivalent to the failure of an engineered system on a grand scale, and would affect billions of people by causing agricultural, economic, and environmental collapses that would cascade throughout the world. The probability of such an abrupt change happening in the near future may be small, but it is nonzero. Because the consequences would be catastrophic, we argue that the problem should be treated with science-informed engineering conservatism, which focuses on various ways a system can fail and emphasizes inspection and early detection. Such an approach will require high-fidelity continuous global monitoring, informed by scientific modeling.

  4. Pliocene –Pleistocene geomorphological evolution of the Adriatic side of Central Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gentili Bernardino

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available This work is a significant contribution to knowledge of the Quaternary and pre-Quaternary morphogenesis of a wide sector of central Italy, from the Apennine chain to the Adriatic Sea. The goal is achieved through a careful analysis and interpretation of stratigraphic and tectonic data relating to marine and continental sediments and, mostly, through the study of relict limbs of ancient landscapes (erosional surfaces shaped by prevailing planation processes. The most important scientific datum is the definition of the time span in which the modelling of the oldest morphological element (the “summit relict surface” occurred: it started during Messinian in the westernmost portion and after a significant phase during middle-late Pliocene, ended in the early Pleistocene. During the middle and late Pleistocene, the rapid tectonic uplift of the area and the climate fluctuations favoured the deepening of the hydrographic network and the genesis of three orders of fluvial terraces, thus completing the fundamental features of the landscape. The subsequent Holocene evolution reshaped the minor elements, but not the basic ones.

  5. Occurrence and significance of biogenic opal in Plio-Pleistocene sediments of the stream Tegua, Cordoba. Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ayala, R.; Karlsson, A.; Daziano, C.; Dogliani, J.; Paredes, R.

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this work is to understand the history of the vegetation from the analysis of phytoliths present in Plio-Pleistocene and interpret the possible climatic changes since the Quaternary sediments to the present

  6. Presencia de Antifer ultra Ameghino (=Antifer niemeyeri Casamiquela (Artiodactyla, Cervidae en el Pleistoceno tardío-Holoceno temprano de Chile central (30-35°S Presence of Antifer ultra Ameghino (=Antifer niemeyeri Casamiquela in the late Pleistocene-early Holocene of Central Chile (30-35°S

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Labarca E

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available El presente trabajo discute el estatus taxonómico de la especie Antifer niemeyeri Casamiquela, 1984, definida a partir de astas completas procedentes de la laguna Taguatagua y la quebrada de Quereo (Pleistoceno tardío-Holoceno temprano, en Chile central (30-35°S. Se concluye, a partir de un estudio morfológico y morfométrico detallado, que Antifer niemeyeri debe ser considerado sinónimo de Antifer ultra Ameghino, 1889 dados los caracteres anatómicos compartidos con esta especie. Los resultados amplían la distribución geográfica del taxón, que previamente se registraba en Argentina, Uruguay y sur de Brasil, y confirman su biocrón para el Pleistoceno tardío-Holoceno temprano (edad Lu-janense, aun cuando las fechas radiocarbónicas de Chile central (ca. 9.900 años 14C AP corresponden a las más tardías para la especie. A la luz de la evidencia paleoclimática disponible, se vincula A ultra durante el Pleistoceno de Chile central a ambientes cálidos y abiertos. Considerando estos requerimientos, se discute su posible vía de ingreso al actual territorio chileno a través de corredores ubicados hacia el sur del macizo andino, y su coexistencia con Hippocamelus bisulcus Molina, 1782. De acuerdo a la información estratigráfica y paleoambiental, se postula que ambas especies habrían sido alopátridas, por lo menos en el área de estudio.This paper discusses the taxonomic status of Antifer niemeyeri Casamiquela, 1984, defined from complete antlers from Taguatagua lake and Quereo canyon, both located in central Chile (30-35°S. From a detailed morphological and moiphometrical study, it is concluded that Antifer niemeyeri should be considered synonymous with Antifer ultra Ameghino, 1889, due to the anatomical characters shared between both forms. These results expand the geographical distribution of this taxa previously recorded in Argentina, Uruguay and southern Brazil, confirming their late Pleistocene-early Holocene biochron, in spite

  7. Late Glacial to Early Holocene socio-ecological responses to climatic instability within the Mediterranean basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-López de Pablo, Javier; Jones, Samantha E.; Burjachs, Francesc

    2018-03-01

    The period spanning the Late Glacial and the Early Holocene (≈19-8.2 ka) witnessed a dramatic sequence of climate and palaeoenvironmental changes (Rasmussen et al., 2014). Interestingly, some of the most significant transformations ever documented in human Prehistory took place during this period such as the intensification of hunter-gatherer economic systems, the domestication process of wild plants and animals, and the spread of farming across Eurasia. Understanding the role of climate and environmental dynamics on long-term cultural and economic trajectories, as well as specific human responses to episodes of rapid climate change, still remains as one of the main challenges of archaeological research (Kintigh et al., 2014).

  8. Phenological behaviour of early spring flowering trees in Spain in response to recent climate changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hidalgo-Galvez, M. D.; García-Mozo, H.; Oteros, J.; Mestre, A.; Botey, R.; Galán, C.

    2018-04-01

    This research reports the phenological trends of four early spring and late winter flowering trees in Spain (south Europe) from a recent period (1986-2012). The studied species were deciduous trees growing in different climatic areas: hazel ( Corylus avellana L.), willow ( Salix alba L.), ash ( Fraxinus angustifolia Vahl.) and white mulberry ( Morus alba L.). We analysed the response to climate and the trends of the following phenophases observed at the field: budburst, leaf unfolding, flowering, fruit ripening, fruit harvesting, leaf colour change and leaf-fall. The study was carried out in 17 sampling sites in the country with the aim of detecting the recent phenological response to the climate of these species, and the possible effect of climate change. We have observed differences in the phenological response to climate depending on each species. Sixty-one percent of studied sites suffered an advance of early spring phenophases, especially budburst on average by -0.67 days and flowering on average by -0.15 days during the studied period, and also in the subsequent fruit ripening and harvesting phases on average by -1.06 days. By contrast, it has been detected that 63% of sampling sites showed a delay in autumn vegetative phases, especially leaf-fall events on average by +1.15 days. The statistic correlation analysis shows in the 55% of the studied localities that phenological advances are the consequence of the increasing trend detected for temperature—being minimum temperature the most influential factor—and in the 52% of them, phenological advances occurred by rainfall variations. In general, leaf unfolding and flowering from these species showed negative correlations in relation to temperature and rainfall, whereas that leaf colour change and leaf-fall presented positive correlations. The results obtained have a great relevance due to the fact that they can be considered as reliable bio-indicators of the impact of the recent climate changes in southern

  9. Pliocene climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowsett, Harry J.; Caballero-Gill, R. P.

    2010-01-01

    The Pliocene Epoch, 5.3 Ma to 1.8 Ma, was a time when paleoclimate conditions ranged from very warm, equable climates (on a global scale), rhythmically varying every 40,000 years, to high-amplitude glacial-interglacial cycles that led to the “Ice Ages” of the Pleistocene. Evidence for paleoclimate conditions comes from fossils, geochemical data, and the integration of these data with sophisticated numerical models. The Pliocene exhibited a range in atmospheric CO2 concentrations with highs estimated to be at most ~425 ppm in the early Pliocene followed by overall decrease toward preindustrial levels by the close of the Pliocene Epoch (Pagani et al. 2010). Sea levels were estimated to be 25m higher than present day and the size and position of ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica were decidedly different from today. On the other hand, by the mid-Pliocene, the majority of fauna and flora as well as continental configurations were basically the same as today. Man’s ability to adapt to or mitigate the effects of future climate require a deep understanding of the rates and magnitude of future climate change on an ever finer scale. Since conditions projected for the end of this century are not in the human experience, we depend upon a combination of numerical climate models and comparison to analogous conditions in the geologic past. The Pliocene contains what might be the closest analog to climate conditions expected in the near future, and therefore understanding the Pliocene is not only of academic interest but essential for human adaptation.

  10. Long-term changes in composition and distribution patterns in the Iberian herpetofaunal communities since the latest Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisbal-Chinesta, Josep Francesc; Blain, Hugues-Alexandre

    2018-03-01

    The climate has undergone significant changes since the end of the Last Glacial Maximum and in the course of the Holocene, parallel to important cultural transformations and migrations in the human communities. The faunal record has also suffered the effects of climate change. Amphibians and reptiles in particular have been shown to be highly sensitive because they are very susceptible to temperature alterations due to their ectothermy. This research presents the first approach to the Iberian paleobiogeography of the different species of amphibians and reptiles from the Late Pleistocene (MIS3) to present times, based on a comparative synthesis of the latest research published in recent years and the fossil record of the 58 archaeo-paleontological sites with significant assemblages. The paleoherpetofaunal associations make it possible to establish two major biotic regions during the Late Pleistocene. The first biotic region was located in the center and south of the Iberian Peninsula, with thermophilic species as the most representative taxa. The second biotic region was formed by the Atlantic-Cantabrian facade and the northeast Iberian area, dominated by hygrophilous and Euro-Siberian species, with an absence of Mediterranean species. After the Last Glacial Maximum there was an unprecedented concurrence in the northern Iberian Peninsula of autochthonous taxa from that area with thermophilic species. In the early Holocene, new species with no previous record in the Iberian Peninsula entered northern Iberia from eastern Mediterranean refugia. Finally, the introduction of North African species was the last significant biogeographical change during the Middle-Late Holocene.

  11. CANIS LUPUS (MAMMALIA, CANIDAE FROM THE LATE PLEISTOCENE DEPOSIT OF AVETRANA (TARANTO, SOUTHERN ITALY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DAVIDE F.BERTÈ

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Here we described the remains of Canis lupus from the bed 8 of Avetrana karst filling (Late Pleistocene; Taranto, Southern Italy. The studied specimens are larger than those collected from the early Late Pleistocene Apulian localities and those referred to the recent Italian wolf. Moreover, the remains from Avetrana are morphometrically close to Canis lupus maximus from France and to C. lupus collected from Central and Northern Italian localities, chronologically related to MIS 2 and MIS 3. Morphologically, the studied specimens slightly differ from both C. l. maximus and other Pleistocene Apulian wolves. The dimensional differences between the Avetrana wolves and those collected from the other early Late Pleistocene Apulian localities could be explained through a spread of a large-sized morphotype from the Northern Italy.

  12. Pangaean climate during the Early Jurassic: GCM simulations and the sedimentary record of paleoclimate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chandler, M.A. [Columbia Univ., Palisades, NY (United States); Rind, D.; Ruedy, R. [Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York, NY (United States)

    1992-05-01

    Results from new simulations of the Early Jurassic climate show that increased ocean heat transport may have been the primary force generating warmer climates during the past 180 m.y. The simulations, conducted using the general circulation model (GCM) at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, include realistic representations of paleocontinental distribution, topography, epeiric seas, and vegetation, in order to facilitate comparisons between model results and paleoclimate data. three major features of the simulated Early Jurassic climate include the following. (1) A global warming, compared to the present, of 5 {degrees}C to 10 {degrees}C, with temperature increases at high latitudes five times this global average. Average summer temperatures exceed 35 {degrees}C in low-latitude regions of western Pangaea where eolian sandstones testify to the presence of vast deserts. (2) Simulated precipitation and evaporation patterns agree closely with the moisture distribution interpreted from evaporites, and coal deposits. High rainfall rates are associated primarily with monsoons that originate over the warm Tethys Ocean. Unlike the {open_quotes}megamonsoons{close_quotes} proposed in previous studies, these systems are found to be associated with localized pressure cells whose positions are controlled by topography and coastal geography. (3) Decreases in planetary albedo, occurring because of reductions in sea ice, snow cover, and low clouds, and increases in atmospheric water vapor are the positive climate feedbacks that amplify the global warming. Similar to other Mesozoic climate simulations, our model finds that large seasonal temperature fluctuations occurred over mid- and high-latitude continental interiors, refuting paleoclimate evidence that suggests more equable conditions. 101 refs., 9 figs., 3 tabs.

  13. Albedo and heat transport in 3-D model simulations of the early Archean climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Kienert

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available At the beginning of the Archean eon (ca. 3.8 billion years ago, the Earth's climate state was significantly different from today due to the lower solar luminosity, smaller continental fraction, higher rotation rate and, presumably, significantly larger greenhouse gas concentrations. All these aspects play a role in solutions to the "faint young Sun paradox" which must explain why the ocean surface was not fully frozen at that time. Here, we present 3-D model simulations of climate states that are consistent with early Archean boundary conditions and have different CO2 concentrations, aiming at an understanding of the fundamental characteristics of the early Archean climate system. In order to do so, we have appropriately modified an intermediate complexity climate model that couples a statistical-dynamical atmosphere model (involving parameterizations of the dynamics to an ocean general circulation model and a thermodynamic-dynamic sea-ice model. We focus on three states: one of them is ice-free, one has the same mean surface air temperature of 288 K as today's Earth and the third one is the coldest stable state in which there is still an area with liquid surface water (i.e. the critical state at the transition to a "snowball Earth". We find a reduction in meridional heat transport compared to today, which leads to a steeper latitudinal temperature profile and has atmospheric as well as oceanic contributions. Ocean surface velocities are largely zonal, and the strength of the atmospheric meridional circulation is significantly reduced in all three states. These aspects contribute to the observed relation between global mean temperature and albedo, which we suggest as a parameterization of the ice-albedo feedback for 1-D model simulations of the early Archean and thus the faint young Sun problem.

  14. Evidence From Svalbard for Cool Episodes in Early Tertiary Arctic Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spielhagen, R. F.; Tripati, A.; Mac Niocaill, C.

    2008-12-01

    The Arctic is a climatically sensitive and important region. However, very little is known about the climatic and oceanographic evolution of the area, particularly prior to the Neogene. Until recently, the Arctic was assumed to be characterized by relatively warm conditions during the early Cenozoic. The Early Tertiary sedimentary sequence on Svalbard contains several layers with coal seams and broad-leaved plants which were commonly accepted as indicators of a generally temperate-warm climate. Here we report on the intermittent occurrence of certain temperature indicators in the succession, which may represent the first northern high- latitude record of near-freezing temperatures for the early Cenozoic. Besides the findings of probably ice- rafted erratic clasts in the Paleocene and Eocene sandstones and shales, we note especially the occurrence of glendonites which are pseudomorphs of calcite after ikaite (calcium carbonate hexahydrate). Stratigraphic control for the most important glendonite layers was improved by paleomagnetic investigations on the host sediment. We measured the chemical composition of Svalbard glendonites which is almost identical to that of similar pseudomorphs from the Lower Cretaceaous of Northern Canada. Mass spectrometric analyses of the glendonite calcite gave very low carbon isotope values. These values suggest a provenance of the calcium carbonate from marine organic carbon and connect our glendonites to the precursor mineral ikaite which has similar low values. Since a variety of studies has demonstrated that ikaite is stable only at temperatures close to freezing point, we have to infer low temperatures also for the deepositional environment of which the sediments were deposited that now hold glendonites. These results imply the occurrence of cooling phases episodically during the warm background climate of the Paleocene and Eocene, suggesting that temperature variability was much greater than previously recognized.

  15. Climate hazards, adaptation and "resilience" of societies (early Little Ice Age, west of France).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athimon, Emmanuelle; Maanan, Mohamed

    2016-04-01

    Over the past ten to fifteen years, climate hazards and adaptation have received more attention due to the current climate change. Climate historians have gathered strong evidence that the world's climate has evolved over the past millennium and one of the most significant changes took place during the Little Ice Age. Recently, a set of questions has emerged: what were the effects of the Little Ice Age on human's societies? How did humans adapt to these climate changes? How did they react to extreme weather-related events? Using examples of climate hazards from the West of France during the beginning of the Little Ice Age (xivth-xviith centuries) such as storms, flooding, drought, harsh winters, the poster aims at showing how the past societies can constitute a source of inspiration for present ones. Through schemas, this research exposes the system's rebound capacity, points out the importance of the historical depth in research on human's adaptation and resilience and shows the value of integrating a historical approach. It reveals that History contributes to the knowledge of the relationship between societies and climate hazards. Data on climate hazards and adaptation of societies stem from historical sources such as chronicles, diaries, books of accounts, records of cities repairs. To protect themselves and their goods, medieval and modern societies had developed specific skills, practices and strategies. From the xivth to the xviiith century, there is an increase of defense by dikes in the low Loire, as for example the construction of those amongst Longué and Ponts-de-Cé between the early xivth century and 1407. The French kingdom's authorities also tried increasingly to provide technical, material, logistical and fiscal support: for instance, during the winter 1564-1565, several bridges have been destroyed by a river flooding in Nantes. The King Charles IX then offered to people of Nantes part of the funds from taxes on the main activities such as the

  16. Phylogeographic structure of Canthon cyanellus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), a Neotropical dung beetle in the Mexican Transition Zone: Insights on its origin and the impacts of Pleistocene climatic fluctuations on population dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolasco-Soto, Janet; González-Astorga, Jorge; Espinosa de Los Monteros, Alejandro; Galante-Patiño, Eduardo; Favila, Mario E

    2017-04-01

    Canthon cyanellus is a roller dung beetle with a wide distribution range in the tropical forests of the New World. In Mexico, it inhabits the Pacific and the Gulf coasts, the Yucatan Peninsula and the south mainly in the State of Chiapas. This species shows a wide geographical variation in cuticle color, which has been used as defining trait for subspecies. In this study we analyzed the phylogeographic and demographic history of the Mexican populations of C. cyanellus using DNA sequences of the nuclear ITS2, and the mitochondrial COI and 16S genes. We found that not all the current valid subspecies are supported by the molecular analysis. The populations are genetically and geographically structured in five lineages. The diversification events that gave origin to the main lineages within this species complex occurred during the Pleistocine in a time range of 1.63-0.91Myr. The demographic history of these lineages suggests post-glacial expansions toward the middle and the end of the Pleistocene. The combined data of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA suggest that the phylogeographic structure and demographic history of the C. cyanellus populations are the result of: the geological and volcanic activity that occurred from the end of the Pliocene to the Pleistocene; and the contraction and expansion of tropical forests due to the glacial and inter-glacial cycles during the Pleistocene. Landscape changes derived from historical events have affected the demographic history of the populations of this species. The results presented here point to the need to review the taxonomic status and delimitation of the lineages encompassed in the Canthon cyanellus complex. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Clay Mineralogy and Crystallinity as a Climatic Indicator: Evidence for Both Cold and Temperate Conditions on Early Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horgan, B.; Rutledge, A.; Rampe, E. B.

    2015-01-01

    Surface weathering on Earth is driven by precipitation (rain/snow melt). Here we summarize the influence of climate on minerals produced during surface weathering, based on terrestrial literature and our new laboratory analyses of weathering products from glacial analog sites. By comparison to minerals identified in likely surface environments on Mars, we evaluate the implications for early martian climate.

  18. Impact of a drier Early-Mid-Holocene climate upon Amazonian forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayle, Francis E; Power, Mitchell J

    2008-05-27

    This paper uses a palaeoecological approach to examine the impact of drier climatic conditions of the Early-Mid-Holocene (ca 8000-4000 years ago) upon Amazonia's forests and their fire regimes. Palaeovegetation (pollen data) and palaeofire (charcoal) records are synthesized from 20 sites within the present tropical forest biome, and the underlying causes of any emergent patterns or changes are explored by reference to independent palaeoclimate data and present-day patterns of precipitation, forest cover and fire activity across Amazonia. During the Early-Mid-Holocene, Andean cloud forest taxa were replaced by lowland tree taxa as the cloud base rose while lowland ecotonal areas, which are presently covered by evergreen rainforest, were instead dominated by savannahs and/or semi-deciduous dry forests. Elsewhere in the Amazon Basin there is considerable spatial and temporal variation in patterns of vegetation disturbance and fire, which probably reflects the complex heterogeneous patterns in precipitation and seasonality across the basin, and the interactions between climate change, drought- and fire susceptibility of the forests, and Palaeo-Indian land use. Our analysis shows that the forest biome in most parts of Amazonia appears to have been remarkably resilient to climatic conditions significantly drier than those of today, despite widespread evidence of forest burning. Only in ecotonal areas is there evidence of biome replacement in the Holocene. From this palaeoecological perspective, we argue against the Amazon forest 'dieback' scenario simulated for the future.

  19. The contrasting effects of short-term climate change on the early recruitment of tree species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibáñez, Inés; Katz, Daniel S W; Lee, Benjamin R

    2017-07-01

    Predictions of plant responses to climate change are frequently based on organisms' presence in warmer locations, which are then assumed to reflect future performance in cooler areas. However, as plant life stages may be affected differently by environmental changes, there is little empirical evidence that this approach provides reliable estimates of short-term responses to global warming. Under this premise, we analyzed 8 years of early recruitment data, seed production and seedling establishment and survival, collected for two tree species at two latitudes. We quantified recruitment to a wide range of environmental conditions, temperature, soil moisture and light, and simulated recruitment under two forecasted climatic scenarios. Annual demographic transitions were affected by the particular conditions taking place during their onset, but the effects of similar environmental shifts differed among the recruitment stages; seed production was higher in warmer years, while seedling establishment and survival peaked during cold years. Within a species, these effects also varied between latitudes; increasing temperatures at the southern location will have stronger detrimental effects on recruitment than similar changes at the northern locations. Our simulations illustrate that warmer temperatures may increase seed production, but they will have a negative effect on establishment and survival. When the three early recruitment processes were simultaneously considered, simulations showed little change in recruitment dynamics at the northern site and a slight decrease at the southern site. It is only when we considered these three stages that we were able to assess likely changes in early recruitment under the predicted conditions.

  20. Fossil palm beetles refine upland winter temperatures in the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, S Bruce; Morse, Geoffrey E; Greenwood, David R; Mathewes, Rolf W

    2014-06-03

    Eocene climate and associated biotic patterns provide an analog system to understand their modern interactions. The relationship between mean annual temperatures and winter temperatures-temperature seasonality-may be an important factor in this dynamic. Fossils of frost-intolerant palms imply low Eocene temperature seasonality into high latitudes, constraining average winter temperatures there to >8 °C. However, their presence in a paleocommunity may be obscured by taphonomic and identification factors for macrofossils and pollen. We circumvented these problems by establishing the presence of obligate palm-feeding beetles (Chrysomelidae: Pachymerina) at three localities (a fourth, tentatively) in microthermal to lower mesothermal Early Eocene upland communities in Washington and British Columbia. This provides support for warmer winter Eocene climates extending northward into cooler Canadian uplands.

  1. Quantifying the Benefit of Early Climate Change Mitigation in Avoiding Biodiversity Loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, R.; Vanderwal, J.; Price, J.; Welbergen, J.; Atkinson, I. M.; Ramirez-Villegas, J.; Osborn, T.; Shoo, L.; Jarvis, A.; Williams, S.; Lowe, J. A.

    2014-12-01

    Quantitative simulations of the global-scale benefits of climate change mitigation in avoiding biodiversity loss are presented. Previous studies have projected widespread global and regional impacts of climate change on biodiversity. However, these have focused on analysis of business-as-usual scenarios, with no explicit mitigation policy included. This study finds that early, stringent mitigation would avoid a large proportion of the impacts of climate change induced biodiversity loss projected for the 2080s. Furthermore, despite the large number of studies addressing extinction risks in particular species groups, few studies have explored the issue of potential range loss in common and widespread species. Our study is a comprehensive global scale analysis of 48,786 common and widespread species. We show that without climate change mitigation, 57+/-6% of the plants and 34+/-7% of the animals studied are likely to lose over 50% of their present climatic range by the 2080s. This estimate incorporates realistic, taxon-specific dispersal rates. With stringent mitigation, in which emissions peak in 2016 and are reduced by 5% annually thereafter, these losses are reduced by 60%. Furthermore, with stringent mitigation, global temperature rises more slowly, allowing an additional three decades for biodiversity to adapt to a temperature rise of 2C above pre-industrial levels. The work also shows that even with mitigation not all the impacts can now be avoided, and ecosystems and biodiversity generally has a very limited capacity to adapt. Delay in mitigation substantially reduces the percentage of impacts that can be avoided, for example if emissions do not peak until 2030, the percentage of losses that can be avoided declines to 40%. Since even small declines in common and widespread species can disrupt ecosystem function and services, these results indicate that without mitigation, globally widespread losses in ecosystem service provision are to be expected.

  2. Millennial-scale Climate Variations Recorded As Far Back As The Early Pliocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steenbrink, J.; Hilgen, F. J.; Lourens, L. J.

    Quaternary climate proxy records show compelling evidence for climate variability on time scales of a few thousand years. The causes for these millennial-scale or sub- Milankovitch cycles are yet poorly understood, not in the least due to the complex feedback mechanisms of large ice-sheets during the Quaternary. We present evidence of millennial-scale climate variability in Early Pliocene lacustrine sediments from the intramontane Ptolemais Basin in northwestern Greece. The sediments are well ex- posed in a series of open-pit lignite mines and exhibit a distinct m-scale sedimentary cyclicity of alternating lignites and lacustrine marl beds that result from precession- induced variations in climate. A higher-frequency cyclicity is particular prominent within the marl segment of individual cycles. A stratigraphic interval of~115 kyr, cov- ering five precession-induced sedimentary cycles, was studied in nine parallel sections from two quarries located several km apart. Colour reflectance records were used to quantify the within-cycle variability and to determine its lateral continuity. Much of the within-cycle variability could be correlated between the parallel sections, even in fine detail, which suggests that these changes reflect basin-wide variations in environ- mental conditions related to (regional) climate fluctuations. Interbedded volcanic ash beds demonstrate the synchronicity of these fluctuations and spectral analysis of the reflectance time series shows a significant concentration of variability at periods of ~11,~5.5 and~2 kyr. Their occurrence at times before the intensification of the North- ern Hemisphere glaciation suggests that they cannot solely have resulted from internal ice-sheet dynamics. Possible candidates include harmonics or combination tones of the main orbital cycles, variations in solar output or periodic motions of the Earth and moon.

  3. Paleoclimatological revision of climate evolution in Spain since the middle pleistocene from travertine and speleothems studies; Aportaciones al conociiento de la evolucion paleoclimatica y paleoambiental en la pensinsula iberica durante los dos ultimos millones de anos a partir del estudio de travertinos y espeleotemas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torres, T; Barettino, D; Canoira, L; Cobo, R; Garcia-Cortes, A; Grun, R; Hoyos, M; Julia, R; Llamas, R

    1996-10-01

    This paper deals on the main results of the Project: ``Paleoclimatological revision since the Middle Pleistocene from geochronological and isotope analysis of spanish travertine`` (CEC-F12W-CT91-0075 ``Paleoclimatological revision of climate evolution in the Western Mediterranean Region, evaluation of altered scenarios). Four travertine deposition areas and a karstic zone were selected according to their geographical signification. Travertine deposits areas were: Priego and Rio Blanco: fluvial travertine; Banyoles and Rio Blanco: lacustrine deposits; Tolox: Alluvial fan deposits. The Cueva del Reguerillo was the karstic area selected. In spite of travertine and speleothems are warm climate indicators, important paleoenvironmental and palaeoclimatological data were obtained, which are in short: Through geomorphology and dating (palaeomagnetism, U/Th, Electro spin resonance and amino acid racemization analysis) the fluvial history of Priego, Rio Blanco and el Reguerillo cave, where a neotectonic and palaeosismicity phenomena were also dated. The oldest ESR dating method age obtained was of 950ka; and the oldest Priego deposits AARD dated were 750 ka old. Through dating, sedimentology, stable isotope analysis and palinology some aspects of climatic evolution of the Iberian Peninsula were determined. A net correlation found between palinology and stable isotope ratios in the Banyoles lake drill hole, allowed to validate the results. Some cualitative data on fluvial and karstic systems water input were determined also.

  4. Thermoluminescence dating of pleistocene sediments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poupeau, G.; Souza, J.H.; Rivera, A.

    1984-01-01

    After a short introduction on recent trends in quaternary geochronology, this article focuses on the thermoluminescence dating of sediments, whose principles and present limits and prospects are discussed. Results are presented for the TL behaviour of sands from various geological contexts in Brazil. They show that the coarse (approx. 100-200μm) quartz fraction of coastal and intra continental, eolian and fluvial-type deposits, might be datable by TL from the upper Holocene to at least the basis of the upper Pleistocene, with a precision of + - 10-15%. (Author) [pt

  5. Thermoluminescence dating of pleistocene sediments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poupeau, G.; Souza, J.H.

    1984-01-01

    After a short introduction on recent trends in quaternary geochronology, this article focuses on the thermoluminescence (TL) dating of sediments, whose principles, present limits and prospects are discussed. Results are presented for TL behavior of sands from various geological contexts in Brazil. They show that the coarse (approx. 100-200 μm) quartz fraction of coastal and intracontinental, eolian and fluvial - type deposits, might be datable by TL from the upper Holocene to at least the base of the upper Pleistocene, with a precision of +- 10-15%. (Author) [pt

  6. Pleistocene lake level changes in Western Mongolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borodavko, P. S.

    2009-04-01

    Global cooling in the Early Pleistocene caused extensive continental glaciation in the northern hemisphere including the arid areas of Central Asia. The reduction of temperatures (particularly summer temperatures) reduced evaporation and strengthened the importance of precipitation. The simultaneity of "lakes periods" (pluvials) and stages of glaciation is established experience confirmed by investigations in the west of North America and Russia. In the Mongolian Great Lakes Depression new evidence for similar conditions is found. The Great Lakes Depression is one of the largest in Central Asia, and is divided into 2 main Lakes basins: Hyargas Lake Basin and Uvs Lake Basin. The basin is 600-650 km in length with a width of 200-250 km in the north and 60-100 km in the south. Total catchment area is about 186600 km2. The elevation of the basin floor is from 1700 m a.s.l. to 760 m a.s.l., decreasing to the north and south-east. The depression extends south-north and is bounded by mountains: Tannu-Ola to the north, Hangai to the east; Gobi Altai to the south and Mongolian Altay to the west. The maximum elevation of the mountains is 4000 m a.s.l. There are some mountains with an elevation between 2000 and 3000 m a.s.l in the lake catchment. These mountains are not glaciated today. The geological record [1] suggests the Great Lakes Depression already existed in the Mesozoic, but assumed its modern form only during the Pliocene-Quaternary when tectonic movements caused the uplift of the surrounding mountains. A phase of tectonic stability occurred during the Late Quaternary. The depression is filled by Quaternary fluvial, aeolian and lacustrine deposits (e.g. sand, pebbles). The Neogene deposits are represented by coloured clay, marl, sand and sandstone [1]. Hyargas Lake is the end base level of erosion of the lake group consisting of the Hara-Us Nur, Dorgon, Hara Nur and Airag lakes. Hyargas is one of the largest lakes in Mongolia, with a water surface of 1,407 km2. The

  7. Information systems in a changing climate: Early warnings and drought risk management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roger S. Pulwarty

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Drought is among the most damaging, and least understood, of all “natural” hazards. Although some droughts last a single season and affect only small areas, the instrumental and paleoclimate records show that droughts have sometimes continued for decades and have impacted millions of square kilometers in North America, West Africa, and East Asia. To cross the spectrum of potential drivers and impacts, drought information systems have multiple sub-systems which include an integrated risk assessment, communication and decision support system of which early warning is a central component and output. An early warning system is much more than a forecast – it is a linked risk information (including people׳s perception of risk and communication system that actively engages communities involved in preparedness. There are numerous drought systems warning systems being implemented at different scales of governance. We draw on the lessons of over 21 drought early warning systems around the world, in both developing and developed countries and at regional, national and community levels. The successes illustrate that effective early warning depends upon a multi-sectoral and interdisciplinary collaboration among all concerned actors at each stage in the warning process from monitoring to response and evaluation. However, the links between the community-based approach and the national and global EWSs are relatively weak. Using the rich experience of information systems across the globe, this paper identifies pathways for knowledge management and action at the relevant scales for decision-making in response to a changing climate.

  8. Climatic and environmental conditions favoring the crossing of the Carpathians by early Neolithic populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perşoiu, Ioana; Perşoiu, Aurel

    2015-04-01

    The study of the origin and spread of Neolithic has been the subject of heated debate since the early studies of Childe (1942). To what extent the dispersal process was influenced by environmental factors is still debated, one of the issues being whether climatic conditions influencing agricultural practices, could have influenced the dispersal route, "blocking" some of the Neolithic societies in front of ecological barriers. Data from Neolithic sites in SE Europe shows that a continuous stream of people and cultures flowed through the Danube's Iron Gates towards Central Europe, while in the eastern part of Europe this process was delayed, people and cultures "moving" around the Carpathians and crossing them with a delay of ca. 1000 years. One of the possible avenues for this crossing is the floodplain of Someşu Mic River (Transylvanian depression), home to the oldest (~8500 cal. BP) Neolithic settlement in Romania. In this paper, we review the climatic and environmental changes that affected the region at the time of Neolithic dispersal. Pollen and stable isotopes in cave ice indicate an early Holocene rapid warming during summer months, peaking around 7 ka cal. BP; and a delayed warming for autumn and winter months, peaking at 5 ka cal. BP, both followed by a continuous cooling trend towards the present. Someşu Mic River developed and maintained a narrow sinuous channel during the Holocene, with local development of meanders and anabranches, in response to both climatic and geologic controlling factors. Archaeological finds in the floodplain and the lower terraces suggest that human societies in the region responded in sensitive manner to these climatic and environmental changes. During warm and dry periods, with low fluvial activity, the number of settlements increased in the floodplain's perimeter, while during the short cold and humid periods, the number of settlements rapidly increased on the lower terraces and on the valley slopes, disappearing from the

  9. Financialization impedes climate change mitigation: Evidence from the early American solar industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerneck, Max

    2017-03-01

    The article investigates how financialization impedes climate change mitigation by examining its effects on the early history of one low-carbon industry, solar photovoltaics in the United States. The industry grew rapidly in the 1970s, as large financial conglomerates acquired independent firms. While providing needed financial support, conglomerates changed the focus from existing markets in consumer applications toward a future utility market that never materialized. Concentration of the industry also left it vulnerable to the corporate restructuring of the 1980s, when the conglomerates were dismantled and solar divisions were pared back or sold off to foreign firms. Both the move toward conglomeration, when corporations became managed as stock portfolios, and its subsequent reversal were the result of increased financial dominance over corporate governance. The American case is contrasted with the more successful case of Japan, where these changes to corporate governance did not occur. Insulated from shareholder pressure and financial turbulence, Japanese photovoltaics manufacturers continued to expand investment throughout the 1980s when their American rivals were cutting back. The study is informed by Joseph Schumpeter's theory of creative destruction and Hyman Minsky's theory of financialization, along with economic sociology. By highlighting the tenuous and conflicting relation between finance and production that shaped the early history of the photovoltaics industry, the article raises doubts about the prevailing approach to mitigate climate change through carbon pricing. Given the uncertainty of innovation and the ease of speculation, it will do little to spur low-carbon technology development without financial structures supporting patient capital.

  10. Nature–Culture Relations: Early Globalization, Climate Changes, and System Crisis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sing C. Chew

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Globalization has been on everyone’s lips in light of the contemporary conditions. It has been viewed mostly as a stage reached as a result of long-term societal changes over the course of world history. For us, globalization has been an ongoing process for at least the last 5000 years. Little attention has been paid to the socioeconomic and natural processes that led to the current transformation. With the exception of historical sociologists, there is less interest in examining the long-term past as it is often assumed that the past has nothing to teach us, and it is the future that we have to turn our intellectual gaze. This paper will argue the opposite. We believe a long-term tracing of the socioeconomic and political processes of the making of the modern world will allow us to have a more incisive understanding of the current trajectory of world development and transformations. To plead our case, we outline the emergence of the first Eurasian World Economy linking seven regions (Europe, the Arabian Peninsula, East Africa, the Persian Gulf, Central Asia, South Asia, Ceylon, Southeast Asia, and China of the world, with the exception of the Americas, starting as early as 200 BC, and the sequence of structural crises and transformations (trading networks and commodities that has circumscribed the structures and trends of the current global system. Such consideration in our view is limited if we do not also include the relations between social systems and Nature, and the rhythms of the climate. For the latter, an awareness of the natural rhythms of the climate as well as human induced changes or climate forcing have triggered system-wide level collapses during certain early historical periods.

  11. Size variation in Middle Pleistocene humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arsuaga, J L; Carretero, J M; Lorenzo, C; Gracia, A; Martínez, I; Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Carbonell, E

    1997-08-22

    It has been suggested that European Middle Pleistocene humans, Neandertals, and prehistoric modern humans had a greater sexual dimorphism than modern humans. Analysis of body size variation and cranial capacity variation in the large sample from the Sima de los Huesos site in Spain showed instead that the sexual dimorphism is comparable in Middle Pleistocene and modern populations.

  12. Paleolimnological reconstruction of environmental variability during the Late Pleistocene and Holocene in the south-east Baltic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kublitskiy, Iurii; Subetto, Dmitriy; Druzhinina, Olga; Kulkova, Marianna; Arslanov, Khikmatula

    2016-04-01

    Kamyshovoe Lake : history of vegetation during late Pleistocene and early Holocene (Kaliningrad District, Russia). Baltica, 28 (2). (in press). Kublitskiy, I., Subetto, D., Kulkova, M., Druzhinina, O., Arslanov, Kh., 2015. Analysis of the climatic changes at the Late Pleistocene and the Holocene based on palaeolimnological studies of the Kamyshovoe Lake (Kaliningrad Region). Proceeding of the IX Russian conference on Quaternary Research (Irkutsk, 15-20 September 2015) [In Russian].

  13. Forecasting weed distributions using climate data: a GIS early warning tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Holcombe, Tracy R.; Barnett, David T.; Stohlgren, Thomas J.; Kartesz, John T.

    2010-01-01

    The number of invasive exotic plant species establishing in the United States is continuing to rise. When prevention of exotic species from entering into a country fails at the national level and the species establishes, reproduces, spreads, and becomes invasive, the most successful action at a local level is early detection followed eradication. We have developed a simple geographic information system (GIS) analysis for developing watch lists for early detection of invasive exotic plants that relies upon currently available species distribution data coupled with environmental data to aid in describing coarse-scale potential distributions. This GIS analysis tool develops environmental envelopes for species based upon the known distribution of a species thought to be invasive and represents the first approximation of its potential habitat while the necessary data are collected to perform more in­-depth analyses. To validate this method we looked at a time series of species distributions for 66 species in Pacific Northwest, and northern Rocky Mountain counties. The time series analysis presented here did select counties that the invasive exotic weeds invaded in subsequent years, showing that this technique could be useful in developing watch lists for the spread of particular exotic species. We applied this same habitat-matching model based upon bioclimaric envelopes to 100 invasive exotics with various levels of known distributions within continental U.S. counties. For species with climatically limited distributions, county watch lists describe county-specific vulnerability to invasion. Species with matching habitats in a county would be added to that county's list. These watch lists can influence management decisions for early warning, control prioritization, and targeted research to determine specific locations within vulnerable counties. This tool provides useful information for rapid assessment of the potential distribution based upon climate envelopes of

  14. Climate warming and humans played different roles in triggering Late Quaternary extinctions in east and west Eurasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Xinru; Zhang, Zhibin

    2017-03-29

    Climate change and humans are proposed as the two key drivers of total extinction of many large mammals in the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene, but disentangling their relative roles remains challenging owing to a lack of quantitative evaluation of human impact and climate-driven distribution changes on the extinctions of these large mammals in a continuous temporal-spatial dimension. Here, our analyses showed that temperature change had significant effects on mammoth (genus Mammuthus ), rhinoceros (Rhinocerotidae), horse (Equidae) and deer (Cervidae). Rapid global warming was the predominant factor driving the total extinction of mammoths and rhinos in frigid zones from the Late Pleistocene and Early Holocene. Humans showed significant, negative effects on extirpations of the four mammalian taxa, and were the predominant factor causing the extinction or major extirpations of rhinos and horses. Deer survived both rapid climate warming and extensive human impacts. Our study indicates that both the current rates of warming and range shifts of species are much faster than those from the Late Pleistocene to Holocene. Our results provide new insight into the extinction of Late Quaternary megafauna by demonstrating taxon-, period- and region-specific differences in extinction drivers of climate change and human disturbances, and some implications about the extinction risk of animals by recent and ongoing climate warming. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Astronomical constraints on the duration of the Early Jurassic Pliensbachian Stage and global climatic fluctuations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruhl, Micha; Hesselbo, Stephen P.; Hinnov, Linda; Jenkyns, Hugh C.; Xu, Weimu; Riding, James B.; Storm, Marisa; Minisini, Daniel; Ullmann, Clemens V.; Leng, Melanie J.

    2016-12-01

    The Early Jurassic was marked by multiple periods of major global climatic and palaeoceanographic change, biotic turnover and perturbed global geochemical cycles, commonly linked to large igneous province volcanism. This epoch was also characterised by the initial break-up of the super-continent Pangaea and the opening and formation of shallow-marine basins and ocean gateways, the timing of which are poorly constrained. Here, we show that the Pliensbachian Stage and the Sinemurian-Pliensbachian global carbon-cycle perturbation (marked by a negative shift in δ13 C of 2- 4 ‰), have respective durations of ∼8.7 and ∼2 Myr. We astronomically tune the floating Pliensbachian time scale to the 405 Kyr eccentricity solution (La2010d), and propose a revised Early Jurassic time scale with a significantly shortened Sinemurian Stage duration of 6.9 ± 0.4 Myr. When calibrated against the new time scale, the existing Pliensbachian seawater 87Sr/86Sr record shows relatively stable values during the first ∼2 Myr of the Pliensbachian, superimposed on the long-term Early Jurassic decline in 87Sr/86Sr. This plateau in 87Sr/86Sr values coincides with the Sinemurian-Pliensbachian boundary carbon-cycle perturbation. It is possibly linked to a late phase of Central Atlantic Magmatic Province (CAMP) volcanism that induced enhanced global weathering of continental crustal materials, leading to an elevated radiogenic strontium flux to the global ocean.

  16. Early warning of climate tipping points from critical slowing down: comparing methods to improve robustness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenton, T. M.; Livina, V. N.; Dakos, V.; Van Nes, E. H.; Scheffer, M.

    2012-01-01

    We address whether robust early warning signals can, in principle, be provided before a climate tipping point is reached, focusing on methods that seek to detect critical slowing down as a precursor of bifurcation. As a test bed, six previously analysed datasets are reconsidered, three palaeoclimate records approaching abrupt transitions at the end of the last ice age and three models of varying complexity forced through a collapse of the Atlantic thermohaline circulation. Approaches based on examining the lag-1 autocorrelation function or on detrended fluctuation analysis are applied together and compared. The effects of aggregating the data, detrending method, sliding window length and filtering bandwidth are examined. Robust indicators of critical slowing down are found prior to the abrupt warming event at the end of the Younger Dryas, but the indicators are less clear prior to the Bølling-Allerød warming, or glacial termination in Antarctica. Early warnings of thermohaline circulation collapse can be masked by inter-annual variability driven by atmospheric dynamics. However, rapidly decaying modes can be successfully filtered out by using a long bandwidth or by aggregating data. The two methods have complementary strengths and weaknesses and we recommend applying them together to improve the robustness of early warnings. PMID:22291229

  17. Early and Middle Jurassic climate changes: implications for palaeoceanography and tectonics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Korte, Christoph; Hesselbo, Stephen; Ullmann, Clemens Vinzenz

    2014-01-01

    The occurrence of ‘ice ages’ within the overall warm Jurassic Period has been the subject of much discussion and not a little controversy. Recently it has been suggested on the basis of occurrence of glendonites in circum-Arctic basins that cold episodes took place in the Jurassic (Price, 1999; R...... by substantial changes in oceanic current patterns which were initiated by a major tectonic uplift that prevented the transport of heat to Polar Regions....... three pronounced oxygen isotope ‘Ice Age’ cycles, and the subsequent well known Toarcian Oceanic Anoxic ‘supergreenhouse’ Event is followed by very warm seawater temperatures in the late Toarcian. Moreover, a very pronounced and effective cooling occurred during the latest Toarcian and early Aalenian...... (Early-Middle Jurassic Boundary Event) resulted in substantial expansion of Arctic climates to palaeolatitudes as low as 45° and in distinctly cooler seawater temperatures in lower latitude European seas. At least the extensive cooling at the Early-Middle Jurassic Boundary Event was most likely driven...

  18. Mid-term evaluation of the Climate Change Action Fund: Technology Early Action Measures (TEAM) block

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-11-01

    To assist Canada in meeting its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the Government of Canada established the Climate Change Action Fund (CCAF) in 1998. Under the CCAF umbrella, the Technology Early Action Measures (TEAM) Block was initially allocated 60 million dollars over a three-year period for the provision of cost-shared support to speed up the development and deployment of cost-effective near market-ready greenhouse gases emission reducing technologies. The main avenues adopted by TEAM in its mandate were: supporting technology development and deployment, overcoming obstacles to technology development and deployment, and piloting technology transfer to developing countries and countries in transition. A mid-term evaluation of its performance to date was conducted. It proved to be too early for an adequate assessment of the extent to which the projects sponsored by TEAM demonstrated technical success in reducing greenhouse gases emissions, considering the time-consuming tasks required for the development and negotiation of technology projects. Most projects to date have not moved beyond the early stages benchmark. It was determined that the expected outcomes will be achieved. The innovative approach selected by TEAM, building on existing programs, appeared to be very effective. Findings and recommendations were discussed in this report

  19. Implications of Martian Phyllosilicate Formation Conditions to the Early Climate on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bishop, J. L.; Baker, L.; Fairén, A. G.; Michalski, J. R.; Gago-Duport, L.; Velbel, M. A.; Gross, C.; Rampe, E. B.

    2017-12-01

    We propose that short-term warmer and wetter environments, occurring sporadically in a generally cold early Mars, enabled formation of phyllosilicate-rich outcrops on the surface of Mars without requiring long-term warm and wet conditions. We are investigating phyllosilicate formation mechanisms including CO2 and H2O budgets to provide constraints on the early martian climate. We have evaluated the nature and stratigraphy of phyllosilicate-bearing surface units on Mars based on i) phyllosilicate-forming environments on Earth, ii) phyllosilicate reactions in the lab, and iii) modeling experiments involving phyllosilicates and short-range ordered (SRO) materials. The type of phyllosilicates that form on Mars depends on temperature, water/rock ratio, acidity, salinity and available ions. Mg-rich trioctahedral smectite mixtures are more consistent with subsurface formation environments (crustal, hydrothermal or alkaline lakes) up to 400 °C and are not associated with martian surface environments. In contrast, clay profiles dominated by dioctahedral Al/Fe-smectites are typically formed in subaqueous or subaerial surface environments. We propose models describing formation of smectite-rich outcrops and laterally extensive vertical profiles of Fe/Mg-smectites, sulfates, and Al-rich clay assemblages formed in surface environments. Further, the presence of abundant SRO materials without phyllosilicates could mark the end of the last warm and wet episode on Mars supporting smectite formation. Climate Implications for Early Mars: Clay formation reactions proceed extremely slowly at cool temperatures. The thick smectite outcrops observed on Mars through remote sensing would require standing water on Mars for hundreds of millions of years if they formed in waters 10-15 °C. However, warmer temperatures could have enabled faster production of these smectite-rich beds. Sporadic warming episodes to 30-40 °C could have enabled formation of these smectites over only tens or

  20. MAGNETOSTRATIGRAPHY OF THE HOMO-BEARING PLEISTOCENE DANDIERO BASIN (DANAKIL DEPRESSION, ERITREA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANDREA ALBIANELLI

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Four magnetozones have been found in the 530 m thick profile of the Dandiero Group. The lower unit, the Bukra Sand and Gravel, extends in the R1 reversed magnetozone from 150 m below the tephra level which was used as the reference marker between the sampled sections. The normal magnetozone N1 is almost completely covered by the lacustrine and deltaic sediments of the Alat Formation, while the following reversed magnetozone contains both the Wara Sand and Gravel and the lacustrine Goreya Fm. The N2 polarity zone is completely occupied by the Aro Sand. This polarity sequence has been calibrated to the geomagnetic time scale using the Early to Middle Pleistocene age of the associated vertebrate fauna and fission-track dating. The four magnetozones were thus regarded as representing the chrons by which the Pleistocene is correlated with magnetochronology. Their three reversal boundaries provided the dates of 1.07, 0.99 and 0.78 Ma, allowing to determine average sedimentation rates close to 1 m/ky. Cyclostratigraphy of the magnetic signal, analysed by the spectral analysis of the time series across the Jaramillo and late Matuyama chrons, confirmed that value. The evidenced cyclicities were directly related to the alternating lithofacies, and both to the astronomical parameters driving the climate changes during the deposition of the Dandiero group (some five hundred thousand years. The section with the Homo site covers the Jaramillo/Matuyama boundary, and the Homo bed located 2 m below this limit is dated 0.992 Ma. 

  1. Anthropogenic Origin of Siliceous Scoria Droplets from Pleistocene and Holocene Archeaological Sites in Northern Syria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thy, Peter; Willcox, George; Barfod, Gry

    2015-01-01

    Siliceous scoria droplets, measuring from 1 to 10 mm, from one late Pleistocene and four early Holocene archaeological sites in northern Syria are compared to similar droplets previously suggested to be the result of a cosmic impact at the onset of the Younger Dryas global cooling event. The !ndi......Siliceous scoria droplets, measuring from 1 to 10 mm, from one late Pleistocene and four early Holocene archaeological sites in northern Syria are compared to similar droplets previously suggested to be the result of a cosmic impact at the onset of the Younger Dryas global cooling event...

  2. Climatic implications of reconstructed early - Mid Pliocene equilibrium-line altitudes in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krusic, A.G.; Prentice, M.L.; Licciardi, J.M.

    2009-01-01

    Early-mid Pliocene moraines in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, are more extensive than the present alpine glaciers in this region, indicating substantial climatic differences between the early-mid Pliocene and the present. To quantify this difference in the glacier-climate regime, we estimated the equilibrium-line altitude (ELA) change since the early-mid Pliocene by calculating the modern ELA and reconstructing the ELAs of four alpine glaciers in Wright and Taylor Valleys at their early-mid Pliocene maxima. The area-altitude balance ratio method was used on modern and reconstructed early-mid Pliocene hypsometry. In Wright and Victoria Valleys, mass-balance data identify present-day ELAs of 800-1600 m a.s.l. and an average balance ratio of 1.1. The estimated ELAs of the much larger early-mid Pliocene glaciers in Wright and Taylor Valleys range from 600 to 950 ?? 170 m a.s.l., and thus are 250-600 ??170 m lower than modern ELAs in these valleys. The depressed ELAs during the early-mid-Pliocene most likely indicate a wetter and therefore warmer climate in the Dry Valleys during this period than previous studies have recognized.

  3. Spatial Models for Prediction and Early Warning of Aedes aegypti Proliferation from Data on Climate Change and Variability in Cuba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Paulo L; Rivero, Alina; Linares, Yzenia; Pérez, Alina; Vázquez, Juan R

    2015-04-01

    Climate variability, the primary expression of climate change, is one of the most important environmental problems affecting human health, particularly vector-borne diseases. Despite research efforts worldwide, there are few studies addressing the use of information on climate variability for prevention and early warning of vector-borne infectious diseases. Show the utility of climate information for vector surveillance by developing spatial models using an entomological indicator and information on predicted climate variability in Cuba to provide early warning of danger of increased risk of dengue transmission. An ecological study was carried out using retrospective and prospective analyses of time series combined with spatial statistics. Several entomological and climatic indicators were considered using complex Bultó indices -1 and -2. Moran's I spatial autocorrelation coefficient specified for a matrix of neighbors with a radius of 20 km, was used to identify the spatial structure. Spatial structure simulation was based on simultaneous autoregressive and conditional autoregressive models; agreement between predicted and observed values for number of Aedes aegypti foci was determined by the concordance index Di and skill factor Bi. Spatial and temporal distributions of populations of Aedes aegypti were obtained. Models for describing, simulating and predicting spatial patterns of Aedes aegypti populations associated with climate variability patterns were put forward. The ranges of climate variability affecting Aedes aegypti populations were identified. Forecast maps were generated for the municipal level. Using the Bultó indices of climate variability, it is possible to construct spatial models for predicting increased Aedes aegypti populations in Cuba. At 20 x 20 km resolution, the models are able to provide warning of potential changes in vector populations in rainy and dry seasons and by month, thus demonstrating the usefulness of climate information for

  4. Aminostratigraphic correlations and paleotemperature implications, Pliocene-Pleistocene high-sea-level deposits, northwestern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Darrell S.; Brigham-Grette, Julie

    Multiple periods of Late Pliocene and Pleistocene high sea level are recorded by surficial deposits along the coastal plains of northwestern Alaska. Analyses of the extent of amino acid epimerization in fossil molluscan shells from the Nome coastal plain of the northern Bering Sea coast, and from the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain of the Chukchi and Beaufort Sea coasts, allow recognition of at least five intervals of higher-than-present relative sea level. Three Late Pliocene transgressions are represented at Nome by the complex and protracted Beringian transgression, and on the Arctic Coastal Plain by the Colvillian, Bigbendian, and Fishcreekian transgressions. These were followed by a lengthy period of non-marine deposition during the Early Pleistocene when sea level did not reach above its present position. A Middle Pleistocene high-sea-level event is represented at Nome by the Anvilian transgression, and on the Arctic Coastal Plain by the Wainwrightian transgression. Anvilian deposits at the type locality are considerably younger than previously thought, perhaps as young as Oxygen-Isotope Stage 11 (˜410,000 BP). Finally, the last interglacial Pelukian transgression is represented discontinuously along the shores of northwestern Alaska. Amino acid epimerization data, together with previous paleomagnetic measurements, radiometric-age determinations, and paleontologic evidence provide geochronological constraints on the sequence of marine deposits. They form the basis of regional correlations and offer a means of evaluating the post-depositional thermal history of the high-sea-level deposits. Provisional correlations between marine units at Nome and the Artic Coastal Plain indicate that the temperature difference that separates the two sites today had existed by about 3.0 Ma. Since that time, the effective diagenetic temperature was lowered by about 3-4°C at both sites, and the mean annual temperature was lowered considerably more. This temperature decrease was

  5. Financialization impedes climate change mitigation: Evidence from the early American solar industry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerneck, Max

    2017-01-01

    The article investigates how financialization impedes climate change mitigation by examining its effects on the early history of one low-carbon industry, solar photovoltaics in the United States. The industry grew rapidly in the 1970s, as large financial conglomerates acquired independent firms. While providing needed financial support, conglomerates changed the focus from existing markets in consumer applications toward a future utility market that never materialized. Concentration of the industry also left it vulnerable to the corporate restructuring of the 1980s, when the conglomerates were dismantled and solar divisions were pared back or sold off to foreign firms. Both the move toward conglomeration, when corporations became managed as stock portfolios, and its subsequent reversal were the result of increased financial dominance over corporate governance. The American case is contrasted with the more successful case of Japan, where these changes to corporate governance did not occur. Insulated from shareholder pressure and financial turbulence, Japanese photovoltaics manufacturers continued to expand investment throughout the 1980s when their American rivals were cutting back. The study is informed by Joseph Schumpeter’s theory of creative destruction and Hyman Minsky’s theory of financialization, along with economic sociology. By highlighting the tenuous and conflicting relation between finance and production that shaped the early history of the photovoltaics industry, the article raises doubts about the prevailing approach to mitigate climate change through carbon pricing. Given the uncertainty of innovation and the ease of speculation, it will do little to spur low-carbon technology development without financial structures supporting patient capital. PMID:28435862

  6. Early warning signal for dengue outbreaks and identification of high risk areas for dengue fever in Colombia using climate and non-climate datasets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jung-Seok; Carabali, Mabel; Lim, Jacqueline K; Herrera, Victor M; Park, Il-Yeon; Villar, Luis; Farlow, Andrew

    2017-07-10

    Dengue has been prevalent in Colombia with high risk of outbreaks in various locations. While the prediction of dengue epidemics will bring significant benefits to the society, accurate forecasts have been a challenge. Given competing health demands in Colombia, it is critical to consider the effective use of the limited healthcare resources by identifying high risk areas for dengue fever. The Climate Risk Factor (CRF) index was constructed based upon temperature, precipitation, and humidity. Considering the conditions necessary for vector survival and transmission behavior, elevation and population density were taken into account. An Early Warning Signal (EWS) model was developed by estimating the elasticity of the climate risk factor function to detect dengue epidemics. The climate risk factor index was further estimated at the smaller geographical unit (5 km by 5 km resolution) to identify populations at high risk. From January 2007 to December 2015, the Early Warning Signal model successfully detected 75% of the total number of outbreaks 1 ~ 5 months ahead of time, 12.5% in the same month, and missed 12.5% of all outbreaks. The climate risk factors showed that populations at high risk are concentrated in the Western part of Colombia where more suitable climate conditions for vector mosquitoes and the high population level were observed compared to the East. This study concludes that it is possible to detect dengue outbreaks ahead of time and identify populations at high risk for various disease prevention activities based upon observed climate and non-climate information. The study outcomes can be used to minimize potential societal losses by prioritizing limited healthcare services and resources, as well as by conducting vector control activities prior to experiencing epidemics.

  7. Paleogeographic variations of pedogenic carbonate delta13C values from Koobi Fora, Kenya: implications for floral compositions of Plio-Pleistocene hominin environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, Rhonda L; Lepre, Christopher J; Wright, James D; Feibel, Craig S

    2007-11-01

    Plio-Pleistocene East African grassland expansion and faunal macroevolution, including that of our own lineage, are attributed to global climate change. To further understand environmental factors of early hominin evolution, we reconstruct the paleogeographic distribution of vegetation (C(3)-C(4) pathways) by stable carbon isotope (delta(13)C) analysis of pedogenic carbonates from the Plio-Pleistocene Koobi Fora region, northeast Lake Turkana Basin, Kenya. We analyzed 202 nodules (530 measurements) from ten paleontological/archaeological collecting areas spanning environments over a 50-km(2) area. We compared results across subregions in evolving fluviolacustrine depositional environments in the Koobi Fora Formation from 2.0-1.5 Ma, a stratigraphic interval that temporally brackets grassland ascendancy in East Africa. Significant differences in delta(13)C values between subregions are explained by paleogeographic controls on floral composition and distribution. Our results indicate grassland expansion between 2.0 and 1.75 Ma, coincident with major shifts in basin-wide sedimentation and hydrology. Hypotheses may be correct in linking Plio-Pleistocene hominin evolution to environmental changes from global climate; however, based on our results, we interpret complexity from proximate forces that mitigated basin evolution. An approximately 2.5 Ma tectonic event in southern Ethiopia and northern Kenya exerted strong effects on paleography in the Turkana Basin from 2.0-1.5 Ma, contributing to the shift from a closed, lacustrine basin to one dominated by open, fluvial conditions. We propose basin transformation decreased residence time for Omo River water and expanded subaerial floodplain landscapes, ultimately leading to reduced proportions of wooded floras and the establishment of habitats suitable for grassland communities.

  8. Pleistocene cave art from Sulawesi, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aubert, M; Brumm, A; Ramli, M; Sutikna, T; Saptomo, E W; Hakim, B; Morwood, M J; van den Bergh, G D; Kinsley, L; Dosseto, A

    2014-10-09

    Archaeologists have long been puzzled by the appearance in Europe ∼40-35 thousand years (kyr) ago of a rich corpus of sophisticated artworks, including parietal art (that is, paintings, drawings and engravings on immobile rock surfaces) and portable art (for example, carved figurines), and the absence or scarcity of equivalent, well-dated evidence elsewhere, especially along early human migration routes in South Asia and the Far East, including Wallacea and Australia, where modern humans (Homo sapiens) were established by 50 kyr ago. Here, using uranium-series dating of coralloid speleothems directly associated with 12 human hand stencils and two figurative animal depictions from seven cave sites in the Maros karsts of Sulawesi, we show that rock art traditions on this Indonesian island are at least compatible in age with the oldest European art. The earliest dated image from Maros, with a minimum age of 39.9 kyr, is now the oldest known hand stencil in the world. In addition, a painting of a babirusa ('pig-deer') made at least 35.4 kyr ago is among the earliest dated figurative depictions worldwide, if not the earliest one. Among the implications, it can now be demonstrated that humans were producing rock art by ∼40 kyr ago at opposite ends of the Pleistocene Eurasian world.

  9. Pliocene and Pleistocene chronostratigraphy of continental sediments underlying the Altiplano at La Paz, Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Nicholas J.; Barendregt, René W.; Clague, John J.

    2018-06-01

    Continental sediments underlying the Altiplano plateau provide insight into the late Cenozoic evolution of the Central Andes. We characterize the magnetostratigraphy and lithostratigraphy of the upper part of this fill sequence along a transect extending southwestward from the Cordillera Real at La Paz, Bolivia, where it is best exposed. Multiple polarity reversals and the locally extensive, 2.74-Ma Chijini Tuff enable correlation between our six sections and three previously reported sections. The tuff ties the composite polarity sequence to the geomagnetic polarity time scale, demonstrating that the stratigraphic record extends from the latest Gilbert Chron (ca. 3.8 Ma) to the late Olduvai subchron (ca. 1.8 Ma), or possibly Jaramillo subchron (ca. 1.0 Ma). The sequence provides Earth's longest known record of low-latitude glaciation and the only record of Pliocene tropical glaciation. It includes evidence for 16 late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene glaciations, separated by interglacials of sufficient length (>103-104 a) to produce mature soil profiles. Successively larger ice caps formed directly before, during, and after the globally warm mid-Piacenzian (3.265-3.025 Ma), and throughout Plio-Pleistocene climate deterioration. The late Pliocene glacial units predate the onset of widespread Northern Hemisphere continental glaciation and in most cases unambiguously correspond to specific cool peaks of the astronomically tuned, benthic oxygen isotope (δ18O) record, including marine isotope stages MG2, M2, KM2, and G10. The glacial events broadly coincide with those nearer both poles, suggesting inter-hemispheric climate linkages. The early formation and subsequent expansion of ice caps beyond glacier margins of the Last Glacial Maximum suggest that the Cordillera Real likely attained its modern height before ca. 3.4 Ma. The number and timing of glaciations, and long-term sediment accumulation and incision rates suggest that the local Altiplano surface formed by ca

  10. The onset of the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum at Branch Stream, Clarence River valley, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Slotnick, B.S.; Dickens, G.R.; Hollis, C.J.; Crampton, J.S.; Strong, C.P.; Phillips, A.

    2015-01-01

    We present new lithologic, biostratigraphic and carbon isotope records for a calcareous-rich ∼84m thick, early Eocene, upper continental slope section now exposed along Branch Stream, Marlborough. Decimetre-scale limestone-marl couplets comprise the section. Several marl-rich intervals correspond to carbon isotope excursions (CIEs) representing increased 13 C -depleted carbon fluxes to the ocean. These records are similar to those at nearby Mead Stream, except marl-rich intervals at Branch Stream are thicker with a wider δ 13 C range. Comparison to other sites indicates the section spans ∼53.4-51.6 Ma, the onset of the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). The most prominent CIE is correlated with the K/X event (52.9 Ma). Prominent marl-rich intervals resulted from increased fluxes of terrigenous material and associated carbonate dilution. We find multiple warming events marked lowermost EECO, each probably signaling enhanced seasonal precipitation. Branch Stream bulk isotopic records suggest 'differential diagenesis' impacted the sequence during sediment burial. (author).

  11. Heterogeneity in global vegetation and terrestrial climate change during the late Eocene to early Oligocene transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pound, Matthew J; Salzmann, Ulrich

    2017-02-24

    Rapid global cooling at the Eocene - Oligocene Transition (EOT), ~33.9-33.5 Ma, is widely considered to mark the onset of the modern icehouse world. A large and rapid drop in atmospheric pCO 2 has been proposed as the driving force behind extinctions in the marine realm and glaciation on Antarctica. However, the global terrestrial response to this cooling is uncertain. Here we present the first global vegetation and terrestrial temperature reconstructions for the EOT. Using an extensive palynological dataset, that has been statistically grouped into palaeo-biomes, we show a more transitional nature of terrestrial climate change by indicating a spatial and temporal heterogeneity of vegetation change at the EOT in both hemispheres. The reconstructed terrestrial temperatures show for many regions a cooling that started well before the EOT and continued into the Early Oligocene. We conclude that the heterogeneous pattern of global vegetation change has been controlled by a combination of multiple forcings, such as tectonics, sea-level fall and long-term decline in greenhouse gas concentrations during the late Eocene to early Oligocene, and does not represent a single response to a rapid decline in atmospheric pCO 2 at the EOT.

  12. The influence of climate on early and burial diagenesis of Triassic and Jurassic sandstones from the Norwegian – Danish Basin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weibel, Rikke; Olivarius, Mette; Kjøller, Claus

    2017-01-01

    Climate changes preserved in sandstones are documented by comparing the sediment composition and early diagenetic changes in sandstones deposited during arid to semi-arid conditions, the Skagerrak Formation, with sandstones of the Gassum Formation deposited in a humid well-vegetated environment...

  13. Lethal Interpersonal Violence in the Middle Pleistocene

    OpenAIRE

    Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Pantoja-P?rez, Ana; Pablos, Adri?n; Mart?nez, Ignacio; Quam, Rolf M.; G?mez-Olivencia, Asier; Berm?dez de Castro, Jos? Mar?a; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-01-01

    Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force ...

  14. Benthic foraminiferal and isotopic patterns during the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (Aktulagay section, Kazakhstan)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deprez, Arne; Tesseur, Steven; Stassen, Peter; D'haenens, Simon; Steurbaut, Etienne; King, Christopher; Claeys, Philippe; Speijer, Robert P.

    2015-04-01

    The early Eocene is characterized by long-term global warming culminating in the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). During this time interval, the Peri-Tethys was connected to the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans by north-south and east-west trending seaways. The Aktulagay section in Kazakhstan provides an expanded record of the middle Ypresian (NP11-13, ~54-50 Ma; King et al., 2013), including the EECO. The marl sequence features a series of sapropel beds, observed throughout the Peri-Tethys, indicative of basin-wide episodic hypoxic events. In order to unravel paleoenvironmental changes, we carried out quantitative faunal studies and stable isotopic (C, O) investigations on excellently preserved foraminiferal assemblages. The period from 54 to 52.5 Ma (NP11 to lower NP12; Alashen Formation) is characterized by a diverse assemblage of deep outer neritic (~200-250 m) benthic foraminifera, with common Pulsiphonina prima and Paralabamina lunata. The initially (54 Ma) well-ventilated oligo- to mesotrophic seafloor conditions gradually changed to more eutrophic and oxygen-limited. These conditions were more permanent in the sapropel-bearing unit at 52.5-52 Ma (middle NP12; Aktulagay B1 unit). This observation is based on the dominance of Anomalinoides acutus and Bulimina aksuatica and the lower diversity. Also the upward migration of endobenthic species, as suggested by rising δ13Cendobenthic, supports this interpretation. These low-oxygen conditions might have been caused by a transgression, flooding lowlands. Benthic foraminiferal assemblages dominated by Epistominella minuta at ~52-50 Ma (top NP12-NP13; Aktulagay B2 unit) suggest an oligotrophic environment, with transient pulses of phytodetritus. Dinoflagellate blooms and Acarinina isotope values at ~50.5 Ma indicate lower salinity (lower δ18O) and higher productivity (higher δ13C), possibly due to riverine input. Large river plumes, episodically reaching the area, in a monsoonal climate context, might explain this

  15. Climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fellous, J.L.

    2005-02-01

    This book starts with a series of about 20 preconceived ideas about climate and climatic change and analyses each of them in the light of the present day knowledge. Using this approach, it makes a status of the reality of the climatic change, of its causes and of the measures to be implemented to limit its impacts and reduce its most harmful consequences. (J.S.)

  16. Early-life exposure to climate change impairs tropical shark survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosa, Rui; Baptista, Miguel; Lopes, Vanessa M; Pegado, Maria Rita; Paula, José Ricardo; Trübenbach, Katja; Leal, Miguel Costa; Calado, Ricardo; Repolho, Tiago

    2014-10-22

    Sharks are one of the most threatened groups of marine animals worldwide, mostly owing to overfishing and habitat degradation/loss. Although these cartilaginous fish have evolved to fill many ecological niches across a wide range of habitats, they have limited capability to rapidly adapt to human-induced changes in their environments. Contrary to global warming, ocean acidification was not considered as a direct climate-related threat to sharks. Here we show, for the first time, that an early ontogenetic acclimation process of a tropical shark (Chiloscyllium punctatum) to the projected scenarios of ocean acidification (ΔpH = 0.5) and warming (+4°C; 30°C) for 2100 elicited significant impairments on juvenile shark condition and survival. The mortality of shark embryos at the present-day thermal scenarios was 0% both at normocapnic and hypercapnic conditions. Yet routine metabolic rates (RMRs) were significantly affected by temperature, pH and embryonic stage. Immediately after hatching, the Fulton condition of juvenile bamboo sharks was significantly different in individuals that experienced future warming and hypercapnia; 30 days after hatching, survival rapidly declined in individuals experiencing both ocean warming and acidification (up to 44%). The RMR of juvenile sharks was also significantly affected by temperature and pH. The impact of low pH on ventilation rates was significant only under the higher thermal scenario. This study highlights the need of experimental-based risk assessments of sharks to climate change. In other words, it is critical to directly assess risk and vulnerability of sharks to ocean acidification and warming, and such effort can ultimately help managers and policy-makers to take proactive measures targeting most endangered species. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  17. Early Holocene hydroclimate of Baffin Bay: Understanding the interplay between abrupt climate change events and ice sheet fluctuations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corcoran, M. C.; Thomas, E. K.; Castañeda, I. S.; Briner, J. P.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding the causes of ice sheet fluctuations resulting in sea level rise is essential in today's warming climate. In high-latitude ice-sheet-proximal environments such as Baffin Bay, studying both the cause and the rate of ice sheet variability during past abrupt climate change events aids in predictions. Past climate reconstructions are used to understand ice sheet responses to changes in temperature and precipitation. The 9,300 and 8,200 yr BP events are examples of abrupt climate change events in the Baffin Bay region during which there were multiple re-advances of the Greenland and Laurentide ice sheets. High-resolution (decadal-scale) hydroclimate variability near the ice sheet margins during these abrupt climate change events is still unknown. We will generate a decadal-scale record of early Holocene temperature and precipitation using leaf wax hydrogen isotopes, δ2Hwax, from a lake sediment archive on Baffin Island, western Baffin Bay, to better understand abrupt climate change in this region. Shifts in temperature and moisture source result in changes in environmental water δ2H, which in turn is reflected in δ2Hwax, allowing for past hydroclimate to be determined from these compound-specific isotopes. The combination of terrestrial and aquatic δ2Hwax is used to determine soil evaporation and is ultimately used to reconstruct moisture variability. We will compare our results with a previous analysis of δ2Hwax and branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers, a temperature and pH proxy, in lake sediment from western Greenland, eastern Baffin Bay, which indicates that cool and dry climate occurred in response to freshwater forcing events in the Labrador Sea. Reconstructing and comparing records on both the western and eastern sides of Baffin Bay during the early Holocene will allow for a spatial understanding of temperature and moisture balance changes during abrupt climate events, aiding in ice sheet modeling and predictions of future sea level

  18. The southernmost record of a large erethizontid rodent (Hystricomorpha: Erethizontoidea) in the Pleistocene of South America: Biogeographic and paleoenvironmental implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vezzosi, Raúl I.; Kerber, Leonardo

    2018-03-01

    The South American porcupines (Erethizontidae) are included in two genera: Chaetomys and Coendou. The latter is a very speciose taxon, with about 13 living species. During at least the late Pliocene-early Pleistocene, erethizontids immigrated to Central and North America during the Great American Biotic Interchange. Although some Pleistocene fossils have been reported, the Quaternary history of this clade is still understudied. The only known extinct species is Coendou magnus. In this work, a fossil of a porcupine is reported from an Upper Pleistocene fluvial sedimentary sequence cropping out in the Northern Pampa geomorphological region, Santa Fe Province, Argentina. Despite this group having different living forms widely distributed in South American Neotropical woodland habitats, the Pleistocene occurrences of Erethizontidae are scarce and limited to Upper Pleistocene deposits from Bolivia, Brazil, and Uruguay. Currently, the specimen here reported represents the only Pleistocene porcupine from Argentina with a stratigraphical context. The morphological characters as well as the dimensions indicate that it is close to the Pleistocene erethizontid Coendou magnus. In this context, the presence of this erethizontid in such a southern locality, together with other taxa recorded from this site and the associated geological and paleoenvironmental evidence, indicates subtropical conditions, compared with the current conditions, which may have allowed a southern displacement of taxa more related to woodlands and xeric subtropical environments.

  19. Plio-Pleistocene aardvarks (Mammalia, Tubulidentata from East Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Lehmann

    2008-08-01

    might have co-existed in Kenya during the early Pleistocene. doi:10.1002/mmng.200800003

  20. Pleistocene changes in the fauna and flora of South america.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuilleumier, B S

    1971-08-27

    In recent years, the view that Pleistocene climatic events played a major role in the evolution of the biotas of southern, primarily tropical continents has begun to displace the previously held conviction that these areas remained relatively stable during the Quaternary. Studies of speciation patterns of high Andean plant and avian taxa (7-14) have led to the conclusion that Pleistocene climatic events were the factors that ultimately shaped the patterns now observed in the paramo-puna and the related Patagonian flora and fauna. The final uplift of the Andes at the end of the Tertiary automatically limits the age of the high Andean habitats and their biotas to the Quaternary. Within this period, the number of ecological fluctuations caused by the glaciations could easily have provided the mechanism behind the patterns now present in these habitats (Appendix, 1; Figs. 1 and 2; Table 1). In glacial periods, when vegetation belts, were lowered, organisms in the paramo-puna habitat were allowed to expand their ranges. In interglacial periods, these taxa were isolated on disjunct peaks, where differentiation could occur. At times of ice expansion, glacial tongues and lakes provided local barriers to gene exchange, whereas in warm, interglacial times, dry river valleys were a major deterrent to the interbreeding of populations on different mountains (Fig. 2; Table 2). A preliminary analysis of about 10 to 12 percent of the total South American avifauna (14), subsequent to the study of the high Andean biota, suggested that the birds of all the major habitats of the continent possess, with about equal frequency, similar stages of speciation. This correspondence in levels of evolution indicated that the avifauna of vegetation zones which were thought to have been more stable (for example, tropical rainforests) are as actively speciating as are those of the more recent paramo-puna habitats. More intensive work on lowland tropical taxa (16, 19-21) and recent work on montane

  1. Global Implications of late Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinctions in the Holarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Alan; Turney, Chris

    2017-04-01

    Improved resolution data from radiocarbon, climate and ancient DNA studies of megafauna and humans is providing the first ability to disentangle the roles of climate change and human impact in the Late Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions. In the Holarctic we find that megafaunal populations underwent repeated local or global extinctions apparently associated with abrupt, centennial to millennial duration warming events (Dansgaard-Oeschger interstadials). Importantly, the extinction events took place both before and after the arrival of modern humans in the landscape. Here we look at the possible role of human activity in Holarctic and suggest it may be through the disruption of metapopulation processes which stabilize ecosystems and may have evolved to provide resilience to rapid and frequent climate shifts in the past. The observed relationship between climate and humans on megafaunal populations may provide a model for global extinction. Fortunately in this regard, the rapid movement of the first Native Americans throughout both American continents during the Last Deglaciation provides a powerful and unique model system for testing the competing roles on extinction because the opposing climate trends in each hemisphere at the time. Here we show that while megafaunal extinctions were associated with warming trends in both cases, the out-of-phase climate patterns caused the sequence and timing of events to be mirrored, providing a unique high-resolution view of the interactions of human colonization and rapid climate change on megafaunal ecosystems, with implications for future warming scenarios. References: Cooper, A., Turney, C., Hughen, K.A., Brook, B.W., McDonald, H.G., Bradshaw, C.J.A., 2015. Abrupt warming events drove Late Pleistocene Holarctic megafaunal turnover. Science 349, 602-606. Metcalf, J.L., Turney, C., Barnett, R., Martin, F., Bray, S.C., Vilstrup, J.T., Orlando, L., Salas-Gismondi, R., Loponte, D., Medina, M., De Nigris, M., Civalero, T., Fern

  2. The terrestrial hydro-climate of the Early Eocene: insights from the oxygen and clumped isotope composition of pedogenic siderite

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Dijk, J.; Fernandez, A.; Müller, I.; White, T. S.; Bernasconi, S. M.

    2016-12-01

    The Early Eocene (56 Ma) is the youngest period of Earth's history when CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere (600-1500 ppm) reached levels close to those predicted for future emission scenarios. Proxy-based climate reconstructions from this interval can therefore be used to gain insights on effects that anthropogenic emissions might have on the climate system. So far, Early Eocene climatic data is limited to the oceans, where proxies for temperature are abundant and relatively well understood. However, in order to get a complete picture of the Early Eocene climate, temperature and rainfall reconstructions on the continental paleo-surface are needed. Here, we present clumped and stable oxygen isotope measurements of siderite samples collected along a North-South transect in the North American Continent. These siderites formed in kaolinitic soils that developed globally under the extremely wet and warm conditions of the Early Eocene. They provide a record of both soil temperature and the δ18O composition of meteoric water, which can be used to unravel the regional paleo-precipitation rate. Both parameters were estimated using an elaborate in-house calibration constructed with synthetic siderite precipitated in the presence or absence of iron reducing bacteria. Measurements of δD on plant-derived N-alkanes present within the same soils align well with our δ18Owater data, confirming an Early Eocene meteoric water line similar to the present day. We provide an estimate of the meridional temperature gradient during the Early Eocene and offer constraints on the boundary conditions of the Earth's hydrologic cycle under high pCO2.

  3. Origin of late pleistocene formation water in Mexican oil reservoirs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Birkle, P. [Instituto de Investigaciones Electricas, Cuernavaca (Mexico)

    2004-07-01

    . For wellhead samples, a 20 liter-sampling-reagent was previously filled with N{sub 2}-gas for the collection and phase separation of the pressurized gas-water-crude oil mixture. No differences in {sup 14}C-concentrations were detected applying, both, conventional and AMS-techniques. In contradiction to the expected 'fossil age' of reservoir water as part of a stagnant hydraulic system, measured {sup 14}C-concentrations between 0.89 pmC and 31.86 pmC indicate a late Pleistocene-early Holocene, regional event for the infiltration of surface water into the reservoir. The variety in water mineralization from meteoric (TDS{sub max} = 0.5 g/l) to hyper-saline composition (TDS{sub max} = 338 g/l) is not caused by halite dissolution from adjacent salt domes, as shown by elevated Br/Cl ratios. In contrary, the linear correlation between {sup 18}O and Cl values reflect varying mixing proportions of two components - meteoric water and evaporated seawater. Instead of water/rock-interaction, evaporation of seawater at the surface prior to infiltration represents the principal process for fluid enrichment in {sup 18}O and chlorine, with maximum values of 17.2 %o and 228 g/l, respectively. The young residence time of formation water in Mexican oil reservoirs implies following: - The common assumption of 'hydraulically-frozen' reservoirs is not correct, as main descending fluid migration occurred during glacial period. Probably, major infiltration processes are related to periods with climatic changes and increased humidity - as observed for the adjacent Yucatan region in SE-Mexico during early-mid Holocene (6,000 yr BP) (Metcalfe et al. 2000) - with the probable transgression of Mexican Gulf seawater into the recent Mexican coastal plain. - The common hypothesis of hydrocarbon maturation within Jurassic organic-rich layers, and its subsequent expulsion and migration into Cretaceous/Tertiary sedimentary units must be expanded by a last-step-process: As glacial

  4. A review of Early Weichselian climate (MIS 5d-a) in Europe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wohlfarth, Barbara [Dept. of Geological Sciences, Stockholm Univ., Stockholm (Sweden)

    2013-06-15

    This report addresses the transition from the last interglacial into the last glacial period in Europe, which corresponds to the time interval between approximately 122,000 and 70,000 years before present. Based on state-of-the-art paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental information from selected terrestrial, marine and ice core records, questions regarding the magnitude, duration, and cyclicity of early glacial stadial and interstadials are discussed. One of the most important aspects in this respect is the timing of climatic/environmental changes seen in terrestrial, marine, ice core and speleothem records, and most importantly, how and on which basis and by which proxy these climatic shifts are defined. Since correlations between archives are made to understand the sequence of events and the response of different systems to a change in climate, timescales are of uttermost importance. Independent chronologies however only exist for a few archives (Greenland ice cores, U/Th dated speleothems, Lago Grande di Monticchio varve record), while the timescales for other records and archives have been obtained through tuning to an independent chronology or to the astronomical time scale. Ice core and speleothem isotopic records basically monitor atmospheric changes, but also contain an important local component. Marine records provide information on sea surface and deep-sea temperature and salinity changes, which vary with location; and terrestrial records (primarily pollen stratigraphies) allow reconstructing changing vegetation patterns. Each of these archives thus has its own multitude of proxies, which respond in different ways to an externally triggered shift in climate, such as changes in incoming solar radiation. Disentangling the response of these proxies in terms of climate is one challenge; another challenge is to obtain a detailed enough correlation between the archives in order to understand what is the trigger, what is the response, and which part adds

  5. A review of Early Weichselian climate (MIS 5d-a) in Europe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wohlfarth, Barbara

    2013-06-01

    This report addresses the transition from the last interglacial into the last glacial period in Europe, which corresponds to the time interval between approximately 122,000 and 70,000 years before present. Based on state-of-the-art paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental information from selected terrestrial, marine and ice core records, questions regarding the magnitude, duration, and cyclicity of early glacial stadial and interstadials are discussed. One of the most important aspects in this respect is the timing of climatic/environmental changes seen in terrestrial, marine, ice core and speleothem records, and most importantly, how and on which basis and by which proxy these climatic shifts are defined. Since correlations between archives are made to understand the sequence of events and the response of different systems to a change in climate, timescales are of uttermost importance. Independent chronologies however only exist for a few archives (Greenland ice cores, U/Th dated speleothems, Lago Grande di Monticchio varve record), while the timescales for other records and archives have been obtained through tuning to an independent chronology or to the astronomical time scale. Ice core and speleothem isotopic records basically monitor atmospheric changes, but also contain an important local component. Marine records provide information on sea surface and deep-sea temperature and salinity changes, which vary with location; and terrestrial records (primarily pollen stratigraphies) allow reconstructing changing vegetation patterns. Each of these archives thus has its own multitude of proxies, which respond in different ways to an externally triggered shift in climate, such as changes in incoming solar radiation. Disentangling the response of these proxies in terms of climate is one challenge; another challenge is to obtain a detailed enough correlation between the archives in order to understand what is the trigger, what is the response, and which part adds

  6. Early kit mortality and growth in farmed mink are affected by litter size rather than nest climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schou, T M; Malmkvist, J

    2017-09-01

    We investigated the effects of nest box climate on early mink kit mortality and growth. We hypothesised that litters in warm nest boxes experience less hypothermia-induced mortality and higher growth rates during the 1st week of life. This study included data from 749, 1-year-old breeding dams with access to nesting materials. Kits were weighed on days 1 and 7, dead kits were collected daily from birth until day 7 after birth, and nest climate was measured continuously from days 1 to 6. We tested the influences of the following daily temperature (T) and humidity (H) parameters on the number of live-born kit deaths and kit growth: T mean, T min, T max, T var (fluctuation) and H mean. The nest microclimate experienced by the kits was buffered against the ambient climate, with higher temperatures and reduced climate fluctuation. Most (77.0%) live-born kit deaths in the 1st week occurred on days 0 and 1. Seven of 15 climate parameters on days 1 to 3 had significant effects on live-born kit mortality. However, conflicting effects among days, marginal effects and late effects indicated that climate was not the primary cause of kit mortality. Five of 30 climate parameters had significant effects on kit growth. Few and conflicting effects indicated that the climate effect on growth was negligible. One exception was that large nest temperature fluctuations on day 1 were associated with reduced deaths of live-born kit (P<0.001) and increased kit growth (P=0.003). Litter size affected kit vitality; larger total litter size at birth was associated with greater risks of kit death (P<0.001) and reduced growth (P<0.001). The number of living kits in litters had the opposite effect, as kits in large liveborn litters had a reduced risk of death (P<0.001) and those with large mean litter size on days 1 to 7 had increased growth (P=0.026). Nest box temperature had little effect on early kit survival and growth, which could be due to dams' additional maternal behaviour. Therefore, we

  7. Testing causes for long-term changes in carbon cycling and climate during the early Paleogene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komar, N.; Zeebe, R. E.; Dickens, G. R.

    2013-12-01

    The late Paleocene to the early Eocene (˜58-52 Ma) was marked by significant changes in global climate and carbon cycling. Among the evidence for these changes, stable isotope records reveal a prominent decrease of δ13C and δ18O (in both surface and deep ocean), indicating a reorganization in the long-term global carbon cycle and a long-term warming trend (˜4°C), respectively. Concurrently, deep-sea carbonate records at several sites indicate a deepening of the calcite compensation depth (CCD). Here, we investigate possible causes (e.g., increased volcanic degassing, decreased net organic burial, and accelerated dissociation of gas hydrate) for these observations, but from a new perspective. The basic model employed is a modified version of GEOCARB III. However, we have coupled this well-known geochemical model to LOSCAR, a model that enables simulation of seawater carbonate chemistry, the CCD, and ocean δ13C. We have also added a gas hydrate capacitor that can account for the storage and release of methane from the seafloor over millions of years. We further consider accurate input data (e.g., δ13C of carbonate) on a currently accepted time scale that spans an interval much longer than the perturbation. Several different scenarios are investigated with the goal of consistency amongst inferred changes in temperature, the CCD, and surface ocean and deep ocean δ13C. The results strongly suggest that a decrease in net organic carbon burial drove carbon cycle changes during the late Paleocene and early Eocene, although an increase in volcanic activity might have contributed. Importantly, a drop in net organic carbon burial may represent increased oxidation of previously deposited organic carbon, such as stored in peat or gas hydrates. The model successfully recreates trends in Earth surface warming, as inferred from δ18O records, the CCD, and δ13C. At the moment, however, our coupled modeling effort cannot reproduce the magnitude of change in all these

  8. Earliest Pleistocene hominid cranial remains from Dmanisi, Republic of Georgia: taxonomy, geological setting, and age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabunia, L; Vekua, A; Lordkipanidze, D; Swisher, C C; Ferring, R; Justus, A; Nioradze, M; Tvalchrelidze, M; Antón, S C; Bosinski, G; Jöris, O; Lumley, M A; Majsuradze, G; Mouskhelishvili, A

    2000-05-12

    Archaeological excavations at the site of Dmanisi in the Republic of Georgia have uncovered two partial early Pleistocene hominid crania. The new fossils consist of a relatively complete cranium and a second relatively complete calvaria from the same site and stratigraphic unit that yielded a hominid mandible in 1991. In contrast with the uncertain taxonomic affinity of the mandible, the new fossils are comparable in size and morphology with Homo ergaster from Koobi Fora, Kenya. Paleontological, archaeological, geochronological, and paleomagnetic data from Dmanisi all indicate an earliest Pleistocene age of about 1.7 million years ago, supporting correlation of the new specimens with the Koobi Fora fossils. The Dmanisi fossils, in contrast with Pleistocene hominids from Western Europe and Eastern Asia, show clear African affinity and may represent the species that first migrated out of Africa.

  9. Late Pleistocene glacial fluctuations in Cordillera Oriental, subtropical Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Mateo A.; Kaplan, Michael R.; Strelin, Jorge A.; Astini, Ricardo A.; Schaefer, Joerg M.; Caffee, Marc W.; Schwartz, Roseanne

    2017-09-01

    The behavior of subtropical glaciers during Middle to Late Pleistocene global glacial maxima and abrupt climate change events, specifically in Earth's most arid low-latitude regions, remains an outstanding problem in paleoclimatology. The present-day climate of Cordillera Oriental, in arid northwestern Argentina, is influenced by shifts in subtropical climate systems, including the South American Summer Monsoon. To understand better past glacier-subtropical climates during the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 26.5-19 ka) and other time periods, we combined geomorphic features with forty-two precise 10Be ages on moraine boulders and reconstructed paleo-equilibrium line altitudes (ELA) at Nevado de Chañi (24°S) in the arid subtropical Andes. We found a major glacial expansion at ∼23 ± 1.6 ka, that is, during the global LGM. Additional glacial expansions are observed before the global LGM (at ∼52-39 ka), and after, at 15 ± 0.5 and 12 ± 0.6 ka. The ∼15 ka glacial event was found on both sides of Chañi and the ∼12 ka event is only recorded on the east side. Reconstructed ELAs of the former glaciers exhibit a rise from east to west that resembles the present subtropical climate trajectory from the Atlantic side of the continent; hence, we infer that this climate pattern must have been present in the past. Based on comparison with other low-latitude paleoclimate records, such as those from lakes and caves, we infer that both temperature and precipitation influenced past glacial occurrence in this sector of the arid Andes. Our findings also imply that abrupt deglacial climate events associated with the North Atlantic, specifically curtailed meridional overturning circulation and regional cooling, may have had attendant impacts on low subtropical Southern Hemisphere latitudes, including the climate systems that affect glacial activity around Nevado de Chañi.

  10. Pleistocene Indian Monsoon Rainfall Variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yirgaw, D. G.; Hathorne, E. C.; Giosan, L.; Collett, T. S.; Sijingeo, A. V.; Nath, B. N.; Frank, M.

    2014-12-01

    The past variability of the Indian Monsoon is mostly known from records of wind strength over the Arabian Sea. Here we investigate proxies for fresh water input and runoff in a region of strong monsoon precipitation that is a major moisture source for the east Asian Monsoon. A sediment core obtained by the IODP vessel JOIDES Resolution and a gravity core from the Alcock Seamount complex in the Andaman Sea are used to examine the past monsoon variability on the Indian sub-continent and directly over the ocean. The current dataset covers the last glacial and deglacial but will eventually provide a Pleistocene record. We utilise the ecological habitats of G. sacculifer and N. dutertrei to investigate the freshwater-induced stratification with paired Mg/Ca and δ18O analyses to estimate seawater δ18O (δ18Osw). During the last 60 kyrs, Ba/Ca ratios and δ18Osw values generally agree well between the two cores and suggest the weakest surface runoff and monsoon during the LGM and strongest monsoon during the Holocene. The difference in δ18O between the species, interpreted as a proxy for upper ocean stratification, implies stratification developed around 37 ka and remained relatively constant during the LGM, deglacial and Holocene. To investigate monsoon variability for intervals in the past, single shell Mg/Ca and δ18O analyses have been conducted. Mg/Ca ratios from individual shells of N. dutertrei suggest relatively small changes in temperature. However, individual N. dutertrei δ18O differ greatly between the mid-Holocene and samples from the LGM and a nearby core top. The mid-Holocene individuals have a greater range and large skew towards negative values indicating greater fresh water influence.

  11. The Pleistocene archaeology and environments of the Wasiriya Beds, Rusinga Island, Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tryon, Christian A; Tyler Faith, J; Peppe, Daniel J; Fox, David L; McNulty, Kieran P; Jenkins, Kirsten; Dunsworth, Holly; Harcourt-Smith, Will

    2010-12-01

    Western Kenya is well known for abundant early Miocene hominoid fossils. However, the Wasiriya Beds of Rusinga Island, Kenya, preserve a Pleistocene sedimentary archive with radiocarbon age estimates of >33-45 ka that contains Middle Stone Age artifacts and abundant, well-preserved fossil fauna: a co-occurrence rare in eastern Africa, particularly in the region bounding Lake Victoria. Artifacts and fossils are associated with distal volcanic ash deposits that occur at multiple localities in the Wasiriya Beds, correlated on the basis of geochemical composition as determined by electron probe microanalysis. Sediment lithology and the fossil ungulates suggest a local fluvial system and associated riparian wooded habitat within a predominantly arid grassland setting that differs substantially from the modern environment, where local climate is strongly affected by moisture availability from Lake Victoria. In particular, the presence of oryx (Oryx gazella) and Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi) suggest a pre-Last Glacial Maximum expansion of arid grasslands, an environmental reconstruction further supported by the presence of several extinct specialized grazers (Pelorovis antiquus, Megalotragus sp., and a small alcelaphine) that are unknown from Holocene deposits in eastern Africa. The combination of artifacts, a rich fossil fauna, and volcaniclastic sediments makes the Wasiriya Beds a key site for examining the Lake Victoria basin, a biogeographically important area for understanding the diversification and dispersal of Homo sapiens from Africa, whose pre-Last Glacial Maximum history remains poorly understood. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Hominin teeth from the Middle Pleistocene site of Yiyuan, Eastern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Song; Sun, Chengkai; Martinón-Torres, María; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Han, Fei; Zhang, Yingqi; Liu, Wu

    2016-06-01

    In 1981-1982, some hominin fossils, including a relatively complete skull and seven isolated teeth, were recovered from the Middle Pleistocene site of Yiyuan in Eastern China. In the present study we provide a detailed metric and morphological comparison of the Yiyuan dental sample in order to characterize better the variability of the human populations that inhabited China during the Middle Pleistocene. Aside from taxonomic and phylogenetic questions, the lack of understanding and/or knowledge about the morphological variability of these populations have caused concern about the human versus non-human nature of some of the hominin dental remains found in East Asia during the Early and the Middle Pleistocene. Thus, our study aims to present a detailed description and comparison of the Yiyuan isolated teeth to 1) discuss and support their human nature and 2) to explore their taxonomic affinities with regard to other penecontemporaneous populations from Asia. Our results clearly differentiate the Yiyuan sample from Pongo specimens and support a human attribution for the Yiyuan material. Our analyses also suggest that the Yiyuan teeth form a morphologically coherent group together with samples from Zhoukoudian, Chaoxian and Hexian. They are different from the more derived specimens from Panxian Dadong, suggesting a pattern of biogeographic isolation and different evolutionary trends between northern and southern China during the Middle Pleistocene. In addition, and despite sharing a common morphological bauplan with Homo erectus sensu stricto (s.s.), the Yiyuan, Zhoukoudian and Hexian teeth are also different from the Indonesian Early Pleistocene samples. In particular, the expression of a highly crenulated or dendritic enamel-dentine surface could be unique to these groups. Our study supports the notion that the taxonomy of the Pleistocene hominins from Asia may have been oversimplified. Future studies should explore the variability of the Asian specimens and

  13. Microbial Habitability and Pleistocene Aridification of the Asian Interior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jiuyi; Lowenstein, Tim K; Fang, Xiaomin

    2016-06-01

    Fluid inclusions trapped in ancient halite can contain a community of halophilic prokaryotes and eukaryotes that inhabited the surface brines from which the halite formed. Long-term survival of bacteria and archaea and preservation of DNA have been reported from halite, but little is known about the distribution of microbes in buried evaporites. Here we report the discovery of prokaryotes and single-celled algae in fluid inclusions in Pleistocene halite, up to 2.26 Ma in age, from the Qaidam Basin, China. We show that water activity (aw), a measure of water availability and an environmental control on biological habitability in surface brines, is also related to microbe entrapment in fluid inclusions. The aw of Qaidam Basin brines progressively decreased over the last ∼1 million years, driven by aridification of the Asian interior, which led to decreased precipitation and water inflow and heightened evaporation rates. These changes in water balance produced highly concentrated brines, which reduced the habitability of surface lakes and decreased the number of microbes trapped in halite. By 0.13 Ma, the aw of surface brines approached the limits tolerated by halophilic prokaryotes and algae. These results show the response of microbial ecosystems to climate change in an extreme environment, which will guide future studies exploring deep life on Earth and elsewhere in the Solar System. Halite fluid inclusions-Ancient microbes-Water activity-Qaidam Basin-Pleistocene aridification. Astrobiology 16, 379-388.

  14. Early signs of range disjunction of submountainous plant species: an unexplored consequence of future and contemporary climate changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Emilien; Lenoir, Jonathan; Piedallu, Christian; Gégout, Jean-Claude

    2016-06-01

    Poleward and upward species range shifts are the most commonly anticipated and studied consequences of climate warming. However, these global responses to climate change obscure more complex distribution change patterns. We hypothesize that the spatial arrangement of mountain ranges and, consequently, climatic gradients in Europe, will result in range disjunctions. This hypothesis was investigated for submountainous forest plant species at two temporal and spatial scales: (i) under future climate change (between 1950-2000 and 2061-2080 periods) at the European scale and (ii) under contemporary climate change (between 1914-1987 and 1997-2013 periods) at the French scale. We selected 97 submountainous forest plant species occurring in France, among which distribution data across Europe are available for 25 species. By projecting future distribution changes for the 25 submountainous plant species across Europe, we demonstrated that range disjunction is a likely consequence of future climate change. To assess whether it is already taking place, we used a large forest vegetation-plot database covering the entire French territory over 100 years (1914-2013) and found an average decrease in frequency (-0.01 ± 0.004) in lowland areas for the 97 submountainous species - corresponding to a loss of 6% of their historical frequency - along with southward and upward range shifts, suggesting early signs of range disjunctions. Climate-induced range disjunctions should be considered more carefully since they could have dramatic consequences on population genetics and the ability of species to face future climate changes. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Early kit mortality and growth in farmed mink are affected by litter size rather than nest climate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schou, Toke Munk; Malmkvist, Jens

    2017-01-01

    increased growth (P=0.026). Nest box temperature had little effect on early kit survival and growth, which could be due to dams’ additional maternal behaviour. Therefore, we cannot confirm that temperature is the primary reason for kit mortality, under the conditions of plenty straw access for maternal nest......We investigated the effects of nest box climate on early mink kit mortality and growth. We hypothesised that litters in warm nest boxes experience less hypothermia-induced mortality and higher growth rates during the 1st week of life. This study included data from 749, 1-year-old breeding dams...... building. Instead, prenatal and/or parturient litter size is the primary factor influencing early kit vitality. The results indicate that the focus should be on litter size and dam welfare around the times of gestation and birth to increase early kit survival in farmed mink....

  16. Formation of Valley Networks in a Cold and Icy Early Mars Climate: Predictions for Erosion Rates and Channel Morphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassanelli, J.

    2017-12-01

    Mars is host to a diverse array of valley networks, systems of linear-to-sinuous depressions which are widely distributed across the surface and which exhibit branching patterns similar to the dendritic drainage patterns of terrestrial fluvial systems. Characteristics of the valley networks are indicative of an origin by fluvial activity, providing among the most compelling evidence for the past presence of flowing liquid water on the surface of Mars. Stratigraphic and crater age dating techniques suggest that the formation of the valley networks occurred predominantly during the early geologic history of Mars ( 3.7 Ga). However, whether the valley networks formed predominantly by rainfall in a relatively warm and wet early Mars climate, or by snowmelt and episodic rainfall in an ambient cold and icy climate, remains disputed. Understanding the formative environment of the valley networks will help distinguish between these warm and cold end-member early Mars climate models. Here we test a conceptual model for channel incision and evolution under cold and icy conditions with a substrate characterized by the presence of an ice-free dry active layer and subjacent ice-cemented regolith, similar to that found in the Antarctic McMurdo Dry Valleys. We implement numerical thermal models, quantitative erosion and transport estimates, and morphometric analyses in order to outline predictions for (1) the precise nature and structure of the substrate, (2) fluvial erosion/incision rates, and (3) channel morphology. Model predictions are compared against morphologic and morphometric observational data to evaluate consistency with the assumed cold climate scenario. In the cold climate scenario, the substrate is predicted to be characterized by a kilometers-thick globally-continuous cryosphere below a 50-100 meter thick desiccated ice-free zone. Initial results suggest that, with the predicted substrate structure, fluvial channel erosion and morphology in a cold early Mars

  17. Late Pleistocene leopards across Europe - northernmost European German population, highest elevated records in the Swiss Alps, complete skeletons in the Bosnia Herzegowina Dinarids and comparison to the Ice Age cave art

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diedrich, Cajus G.

    2013-09-01

    European leopard sites in Europe demonstrate Early/Middle Pleistocene out of Africa lowland, and Late Pleistocene Asian alpine migrations being driven by climatic changes. Four different European Pleistocene subspecies are known. The final European Late Pleistocene “Ice Age leopard” Panthera pardus spelaea (Bächler, 1936) is validated taxonomically. The skull shows heavy signs of sexual dimorphism with closest cranial characters to the Caucasian Panthera pardus ciscaucasica (Persian leopard). Late Pleistocene leopards were distributed northernmost, up to S-England with the youngest stratigraphic records by skeletons and cave art in the MIS 2/3 (about 32,000-26,000 BP). The oldest leopard painting left by Late Palaeolithics (Aurignacians/Gravettians) in the Chauvet Cave (S-France) allows the reconstruction of the Ice Age leopard fur spot pattern being close to the snow or Caucasian leopards. The last Ice Age glacial leopard habitat was the mountain/alpine boreal forest (not mammoth steppe lowland), where those hunted even larger prey such as alpine game (Ibex, Chamois). Into some lairs, those imported their prey by short-term cave dwelling (e.g. Baumann's Cave, Harz Mountains, Germany). Only Eurasian Ice Age leopards specialized, similar as other Late Pleistocene large felids (steppe lions), on cave bear predation/scavenging partly very deep in caves. In Vjetrenica Cave (Dinarid Mountains, Bosnia Herzegovina), four adult leopards (two males/two females) of the MIS 3 were found about two km deep from the entrance in a cave bear den, near to one cave bear skeleton, that remained articulated in its nest. Leopards died there, partly being trapped by raising water levels of an active ponor stream, but seem to have been killed possibly either, similar as for lions known, in battles with cave bears in several cave bear den sites of Europe (e.g. Baumann's Cave, Wildkirchli Cave, Vjetrenica Cave). At other large cave sites, with overlap of hyena, wolf and dhole dens at

  18. Successful combination of electron spin resonance, luminescence and palaeomagnetic dating methods allows reconstruction of the Pleistocene evolution of the lower Moulouya river (NE Morocco)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartz, Melanie; Rixhon, Gilles; Duval, Mathieu; King, Georgina E.; Álvarez Posada, Claudia; Parés, Josep M.; Brückner, Helmut

    2018-04-01

    Based on a combination of Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) dating of quartz, luminescence dating of K-feldspar and palaeomagnetism, this study presents the first chronostratigraphic framework for the Pleistocene fluvial deposits of the lower Moulouya river in the Triffa basin (NE Morocco). K-feldspar pIRIR225 and pIRIR290 signals of all samples are saturated, suggesting fluvial deposition at least as early as the Middle Pleistocene (∼0.39-0.80 Ma). Consequently, further chronological information was obtained with ESR dating of quartz grains from the ancient Pleistocene fluvial deposits. As for ESR, the multiple centres approach provides equivalent dose values derived from the Al and Ti centres that mostly agree within 1σ-error, suggesting complete signal resetting from the former during fluvial transport. ESR dating results yield Calabrian deposition ages for all river profiles from ∼1.1 to ∼1.5 Ma. These ages are remarkably consistent with the palaeomagnetic results: the occurrence of mostly reversed polarity in the deposits indicates a Matuyama age (>0.78 Ma). While low incision rates in the Triffa basin (0.025 ± 0.003 mm/a) related to thrusting activity during the Calabrian could be inferred, the fluvial record points to an acyclic and discontinuous sedimentation pattern over the last ∼1.3 Ma. It thereby probably rules out climate as the main driver for fluvial aggradation in the lowermost sedimentary basin. At a regional scale, several indicators point to transient fluvial response resulting from major Quaternary tectonic activity along the Beni Snassen gorge, located directly upstream of the investigated basin. We suggest that a capture event at the margin of the uplifting Beni Snassen massif occurred between 1.04 and 1.36 Ma at the latest and subsequently led to the creation of the gorge.

  19. The bias and signal attenuation present in conventional pollen-based climate reconstructions as assessed by early climate data from Minnesota, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    St Jacques, Jeannine-Marie; Cumming, Brian F; Sauchyn, David J; Smol, John P

    2015-01-01

    The inference of past temperatures from a sedimentary pollen record depends upon the stationarity of the pollen-climate relationship. However, humans have altered vegetation independent of changes to climate, and consequently modern pollen deposition is a product of landscape disturbance and climate, which is different from the dominance of climate-derived processes in the past. This problem could cause serious signal distortion in pollen-based reconstructions. In the north-central United States, direct human impacts have strongly altered the modern vegetation and hence the pollen rain since Euro-American settlement in the mid-19th century. Using instrumental temperature data from the early 1800 s from Fort Snelling (Minnesota), we assessed the signal distortion and bias introduced by using the conventional method of inferring temperature from pollen assemblages in comparison to a calibration set from pre-settlement pollen assemblages and the earliest instrumental climate data. The early post-settlement calibration set provides more accurate reconstructions of the 19th century instrumental record, with less bias, than the modern set does. When both modern and pre-industrial calibration sets are used to reconstruct past temperatures since AD 1116 from pollen counts from a varve-dated record from Lake Mina, Minnesota, the conventional inference method produces significant low-frequency (centennial-scale) signal attenuation and positive bias of 0.8-1.7 °C, resulting in an overestimation of Little Ice Age temperature and likely an underestimation of the extent and rate of anthropogenic warming in this region. However, high-frequency (annual-scale) signal attenuation exists with both methods. Hence, we conclude that any past pollen spectra from before Euro-American settlement in this region should be interpreted using a pre-Euro-American settlement pollen set, paired to the earliest instrumental climate records. It remains to be explored how widespread this problem is

  20. The bias and signal attenuation present in conventional pollen-based climate reconstructions as assessed by early climate data from Minnesota, USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeannine-Marie St Jacques

    Full Text Available The inference of past temperatures from a sedimentary pollen record depends upon the stationarity of the pollen-climate relationship. However, humans have altered vegetation independent of changes to climate, and consequently modern pollen deposition is a product of landscape disturbance and climate, which is different from the dominance of climate-derived processes in the past. This problem could cause serious signal distortion in pollen-based reconstructions. In the north-central United States, direct human impacts have strongly altered the modern vegetation and hence the pollen rain since Euro-American settlement in the mid-19th century. Using instrumental temperature data from the early 1800 s from Fort Snelling (Minnesota, we assessed the signal distortion and bias introduced by using the conventional method of inferring temperature from pollen assemblages in comparison to a calibration set from pre-settlement pollen assemblages and the earliest instrumental climate data. The early post-settlement calibration set provides more accurate reconstructions of the 19th century instrumental record, with less bias, than the modern set does. When both modern and pre-industrial calibration sets are used to reconstruct past temperatures since AD 1116 from pollen counts from a varve-dated record from Lake Mina, Minnesota, the conventional inference method produces significant low-frequency (centennial-scale signal attenuation and positive bias of 0.8-1.7 °C, resulting in an overestimation of Little Ice Age temperature and likely an underestimation of the extent and rate of anthropogenic warming in this region. However, high-frequency (annual-scale signal attenuation exists with both methods. Hence, we conclude that any past pollen spectra from before Euro-American settlement in this region should be interpreted using a pre-Euro-American settlement pollen set, paired to the earliest instrumental climate records. It remains to be explored how widespread

  1. The role of dispersal and vicariance in the Pleistocene history of an East African mountain rodent, Praomys delectorum

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bryja, Josef; Mikula, Ondřej; Patzenhauerová, Hana; Oguge, N. O.; Šumbera, R.; Verheyen, E.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 41, č. 1 (2014), s. 196-208 ISSN 0305-0270 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/0983 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Cytochrome b * Eastern Arc Mountains * microsatellites * montane forests * Pleistocene climate changes * Praomys delectorum * Muridae * Southern Rift Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 4.590, year: 2014

  2. Human-climate interaction during the Early Upper Paleolithic: testing the hypothesis of an adaptive shift between the Proto-Aurignacian and the Early Aurignacian.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banks, William E; d'Errico, Francesco; Zilhão, João

    2013-01-01

    The Aurignacian technocomplex comprises a succession of culturally distinct phases. Between its first two subdivisions, the Proto-Aurignacian and the Early Aurignacian, we see a shift from single to separate reduction sequences for blade and bladelet production, the appearance of split-based antler points, and a number of other changes in stone tool typology and technology as well as in symbolic material culture. Bayesian modeling of available (14)C determinations, conducted within the framework of this study, indicates that these material culture changes are coincident with abrupt and marked climatic changes. The Proto-Aurignacian occurs during an interval (ca. 41.5-39.9 k cal BP) of relative climatic amelioration, Greenland Interstadials (GI) 10 and 9, punctuated by a short cold stadial. The Early Aurignacian (ca. 39.8-37.9 k cal BP) predominantly falls within the climatic phase known as Heinrich Stadial (HS) 4, and its end overlaps with the beginning of GI 8, the former being predominantly characterized by cold and dry conditions across the European continent. We use eco-cultural niche modeling to quantitatively evaluate whether these shifts in material culture are correlated with environmental variability and, if so, whether the ecological niches exploited by human populations shifted accordingly. We employ genetic algorithm (GARP) and maximum entropy (Maxent) techniques to estimate the ecological niches exploited by humans (i.e., eco-cultural niches) during these two phases of the Aurignacian. Partial receiver operating characteristic analyses are used to evaluate niche variability between the two phases. Results indicate that the changes in material culture between the Proto-Aurignacian and the Early Aurignacian are associated with an expansion of the ecological niche. These shifts in both the eco-cultural niche and material culture are interpreted to represent an adaptive response to the relative deterioration of environmental conditions at the onset of HS4

  3. Planktic foraminiferal photosymbiont bleaching during the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (Site 1051, northwestern Atlantic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luciani, Valeria; D'Onofrio, Roberta; Dickens, Gerald Roy; Wade, Bridget

    2017-04-01

    The symbiotic relationship with algae is a key strategy adopted by many modern species and by early Paleogene shallow-dwelling planktic foraminifera. The endosymbionts play an important role in foraminiferal calcification, longevity and growth, allowing the host to succeed in oligotrophic environment. We have indirect evidence on the presence and loss of algae photosymbionts because symbionts modify the chemistry of the microenvironment where a foraminifer calcifies, resulting in a characteristic geochemical signature between test size and δ13C. We present here the result of a test on loss of algal photosymbiont (bleaching) in planktic foraminifera from the northwest Atlantic Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 1051 across the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO), the interval ( 49-53 Ma) when Earth surface temperatures and probably atmospheric pCO2 reached their Cenozoic maximum. We select this interval because two symbiont-bearing planktic foraminiferal genera Morozovella and Acarinina, that were important calcifiers of the early Paleogene tropical-subtropical oceans, experienced a marked and permanent switch in abundance at the beginning of the EECO, close to the carbon isotope excursion known as J event. Specifically, the relative abundance of Morozovella permanently decreased by at least half, along with a progressive decrease in the number of species. Concomitantly, the genus Acarinina almost doubled its abundance and diversified within the EECO. Many stressors inducing loss of photosymbiosis may have occurred during the long-lasting environmental conditions relating to the EECO extreme warmth, such as high pCO2 and possible decrease of the surface-water pH. The bleaching may therefore represent a potential mechanism to explain the rapid morozovellid decline at the start of the EECO. Our geochemical data from Site 1051 demonstrate that there was indeed a reduction of algal-symbiosis in morozovellids at the EECO beginning. This bleaching event occurred at the

  4. Climate and history in the late 18th and early 19th centuries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Theodore S.

    As in many areas of human knowledge, the notion of climate acquired a deeper historical content around the turn of the 19th century. Natural philosophers, geographers, and others became increasingly aware of climate's own history and its relation to human, plant and animal, and Earth history. This article examines several aspects of this “historicization” of climate.The lively 18th century discussion of the influence of climate on society is well known. Montesquieu is its most famous representative, but Voltaire, Hume, Kant, and others also participated. Their debate was literary more than scientific, their goal the understanding of man, not climate. Partly for this reason and partly because of the lack of good information on climates, they made no attempt to gather substantial climatic data. In fact, the importance of systematically collecting reliable data was scarcely understood in any area of natural philosophy before the last decades of the century [Cf. Frängsmyr et al., 1990; Feldman, 1990]. Instead, participants in the debate repeated commonplaces dating from Aristotle and Hippocrates and based their conclusions on unreliable reports from travelers. As Glacken wrote of Montesquieu, “his dishes are from old and well-tested recipes” [Glacken, 1967, chapter 12]. This is not to say that the debate over climatic influence was not significant—only that its significance lay more in the history of man than in the atmospheric sciences.

  5. PLIO-PLEISTOCENE FOSSIL VERTEBRATES OF MONTE TUTTAVISTA (OROSEI, EASTERN SARDINIA, ITALY, AN OVERVIEW

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    LAURA ABBAZZI

    2004-11-01

    Full Text Available The preliminary results of the analisys of fossil vertebrate remains from 19 fissure fillings in the karst network at Monte Tuttavista (Orosei, NMoro are reported. about 80 taxa, among fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals have been recognised.These remains document the evolution of vertebrate assemblages in the Sardinian insular domain, during a time interval apparently spanning the Late Pliocene to Late Pleistocene or Holocene. A succession of at least four populating complexes has been identified which document the vertebrate colonisation phases from the Italian mainland and the following periods of insularity. Indeed, the occurrence of endemic taxa such as the murid Rhagapodemus minor, the primate Macaca cf. M. majori and the caprine Nesogoral, suggest some fissure fillings date to a phase close to the Plio/Pleistocene boundary since these taxa occur at the Sardinian locality Capo Figari I which has been dated to about 1.8 Ma. However, the presence of the "hunting-hyaena" Chasmaporthetes, never reported before in Sardinia, could suggest that the beginning of the vertebrate record of Monte Tuttavista is older, given that this carnivore is documented in European Middle Pliocene-Early Pleistocene localities. The vertebrate assemblages that document the most recent migratory phases in the karst network of Monte Tuttavista are characterised by the occurrence of the endemic megalocerine cervid Praemegaceros cazioti and the arvicolid Tyrrhenicola henseli which are comparable with those occurring in other Late Pleistocene and early Holocene Sardinian sites.

  6. Latest Pleistocene to Holocene Evolution of the Baie de Port au Prince, Haiti

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    Rios, J. K.; McHugh, C. M.; Seeber, L.; Blair, S.; Sorlien, C. C.

    2012-12-01

    The Baie de Port au Prince (BPP) is adjacent a restraining segment of the sinistral Caribbean-North America plate boundary and is therefore situated between converging high-relief thrust systems, the Massif Selle (Peninsula Range) to the south and the Chaine de Matheux (Hispaniola highlands) to the north. To evaluate neotectonic deformation, seismic hazards and sedimentation patterns for the BPP, six gravity cores were studied within the framework of chirp profiles collected from the R/V Endeavor in 2010. The cores were recovered from 76 m to 148 m of water depth sampling sediment from the carbonate platform that rims the BPP and from the slope. We studied the biostratigraphy (foraminifers, nannoplankton), geochemical elemental composition and physical properties of the sediment. An age model from the last glacial to the present (~20 ka BP) was derived from radiocarbon. Nannoplankton biostratigraphy provide constraints on the late Pleistocene. The BPP is 150 m maximum water depth and is rimmed by an ~30 m deep carbonate platform that has undergone dissolution. Terraces characterize the sub-bottom topography to the NE. This topography was covered by sediment during at least one relative sea-level cycle. Sediment progradation and mass-wasting on the northern and southern flanks of the BPP respectively, occurred during the latest Pleistocene low stand (~20 ka BP). Increased sedimentation from 0.2 mm/year to 0.8 mm/year occurred from 14.2 ka BP to 9.5 ka BP. This period also corresponds with a global rapid rate in sea-level rise from -94 m to -37 m. A basin wide acoustically transparent layer of sediment ~10 m thick covered the BPP. Mass-wasting, microfaulting, fluidization and turbidites caused by erosion triggered by pre-historic earthquakes possibly associated with EPG transform fault are found in the cores. One such deposit is possibly associated to the 2010 earthquake and another to an unconformable surface that separates early- from late-Holocene sediment on the

  7. The late Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record of eastern Asia: synthesis and review.

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    Bae, Christopher J

    2010-01-01

    Traditionally, Middle Pleistocene hominin fossils that cannot be allocated to Homo erectus sensu lato or modern H. sapiens have been assigned to different specific taxa. For example, in eastern Asia, these hominin fossils have been classified as archaic, early, or premodern H. sapiens. An increasing number of Middle Pleistocene hominin fossils are currently being assigned to H. heidelbergensis. This is particularly the case for the African and European Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record. There have been suggestions that perhaps the eastern Asian late Middle Pleistocene hominins can also be allocated to the H. heidelbergensis hypodigm. In this article, I review the current state of the late Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record from eastern Asia and examine the various arguments for assigning these hominins to the different specific taxa. The two primary conclusions drawn from this review are as follows: 1) little evidence currently exists in the eastern Asian Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record to support their assignment to H. heidelbergensis; and 2) rather than add to the growing list of hominin fossil taxa by using taxonomic names like H. daliensis for northeast Asian fossils and H. mabaensis for Southeast Asian fossils, it is better to err on the side of caution and continue to use the term archaic H. sapiens to represent all of these hominin fossils. What should be evident from this review is the need for an increase in the quality and quantity of the eastern Asian hominin fossil data set. Fortunately, with the increasing number of large-scale multidisciplinary paleoanthropological field and laboratory research projects in eastern Asia, the record is quickly becoming better understood. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  8. To what extent does climate explain variations in reported malaria cases in early 20th century Uganda?

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    Adrian M. Tompkins

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Malaria case statistics were analysed for the period 1926 to 1960 to identify inter-annual variations in malaria cases for the Uganda Protectorate. The analysis shows the mid-to-late 1930s to be a period of increased reported cases. After World War II, malaria cases trend down to a relative minimum in the early 1950s, before increasing rapidly after 1953 to the end of the decade. Data for the Western Province confirm these national trends, which at the time were attributed to a wide range of causes, including land development and management schemes, population mobility, interventions and misdiagnosis. Climate was occasionally proposed as a contributor to enhanced case numbers, and unusual precipitation patterns were held responsible; temperature was rarely, if ever, considered. In this study, a dynamical malaria model was driven with available precipitation and temperature data from the period for five stations located across a range of environments in Uganda. In line with the historical data, the simulations produced relatively enhanced transmission in the 1930s, although there is considerable variability between locations. In all locations, malaria transmission was low in the late 1940s and early 1950s, steeply increasing after 1954. Results indicate that past climate variability explains some of the variations in numbers of reported malaria cases. The impact of multiannual variability in temperature, while only on the order of 0.5°C, was sufficient to drive some of the trends observed in the statistics and thus the role of climate was likely underestimated in the contemporary reports. As the elimination campaigns of the 1960s followed this partly climate-driven increase in malaria, this emphasises the need to account for climate when planning and evaluating intervention strategies.

  9. Late Pleistocene and Holocene mammal extinctions on continental Africa

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    Faith, J. Tyler

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the cause of late Quaternary mammal extinctions is the subject of intense debate spanning the fields of archeology and paleontology. In the global context, the losses on continental Africa have received little attention and are poorly understood. This study aims to inspire new discussion of African extinctions through a review of the extinct species and the chronology and possible causes of those extinctions. There are at least 24 large mammal (> 5 kg) species known to have disappeared from continental Africa during the late Pleistocene or Holocene, indicating a much greater taxonomic breadth than previously recognized. Among the better sampled taxa, these losses are restricted to the terminal Pleistocene and early Holocene, between 13,000 and 6000 yrs ago. The African extinctions preferentially affected species that are grazers or prefer grasslands. Where good terrestrial paleoenvironmental records are present, extinctions are associated with changes in the availability, productivity, or structure of grassland habitats, suggesting that environmental changes played a decisive role in the losses. In the broader evolutionary context, these extinctions represent recent examples of selective taxonomic winnowing characterized by the loss of grassland specialists and the establishment of large mammal communities composed of more ecologically flexible taxa over the last million years. There is little reason to believe that humans played an important role in African extinctions.

  10. Ancient divergence time estimates in Eutropis rugifera support the existence of Pleistocene barriers on the exposed Sunda Shelf

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    Benjamin R. Karin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Episodic sea level changes that repeatedly exposed and inundated the Sunda Shelf characterize the Pleistocene. Available evidence points to a more xeric central Sunda Shelf during periods of low sea levels, and despite the broad land connections that persisted during this time, some organisms are assumed to have faced barriers to dispersal between land-masses on the Sunda Shelf. Eutropis rugifera is a secretive, forest adapted scincid lizard that ranges across the Sunda Shelf. In this study, we sequenced one mitochondrial (ND2 and four nuclear (BRCA1, BRCA2, RAG1, and MC1R markers and generated a time-calibrated phylogeny in BEAST to test whether divergence times between Sundaic populations of E. rugifera occurred during Pleistocene sea-level changes, or if they predate the Pleistocene. We find that E. rugifera shows pre-Pleistocene divergences between populations on different Sundaic land-masses. The earliest divergence within E. rugifera separates the Philippine samples from the Sundaic samples approximately 16 Ma; the Philippine populations thus cannot be considered conspecific with Sundaic congeners. Sundaic populations diverged approximately 6 Ma, and populations within Borneo from Sabah and Sarawak separated approximately 4.5 Ma in the early Pliocene, followed by further cladogenesis in Sarawak through the Pleistocene. Divergence of peninsular Malaysian populations from the Mentawai Archipelago occurred approximately 5 Ma. Separation among island populations from the Mentawai Archipelago likely dates to the Pliocene/Pleistocene boundary approximately 3.5 Ma, and our samples from peninsular Malaysia appear to coalesce in the middle Pleistocene, about 1 Ma. Coupled with the monophyly of these populations, these divergence times suggest that despite consistent land-connections between these regions throughout the Pleistocene E. rugifera still faced barriers to dispersal, which may be a result of environmental shifts that accompanied the

  11. The Preboreal-like Asian monsoon climate in the early last interglacial period recorded from the Dark Cave, Southwest China

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    Jiang, Xiuyang; He, Yaoqi; Wang, Xiaoyan; Sun, Xiaoshuang; Hong, Hui; Liu, Juan; Yu, Tsai-Luen; Li, Zhizhong; Shen, Chuan-Chou

    2017-08-01

    Transitions of glacial-interglacial cycles are critical periods for Quaternary climate shifts. Here, we present new, decadal resolution Asian summer monsoon (ASM) record from three stalagmites obtained from the Dark Cave in southwestern China over 130-114 thousand years ago (ka, before CE 1950). Chronology was anchored by 28 230Th dates with typical uncertainties of ±0.3-1.0 kyr, allowing an assessment of timing and transition of climate changes during the onset and end of the last interglacial. An agreement between this new and previous stalagmite δ18O records supports that summer insolation predominates orbital-scale ASM evolution. A 2-3 kyr-long gradually increasing ASM period, analogous to the classical Preboreal episode in the early Holocene, follows the termination of a weak monsoon interval at 129.0 ± 0.8 ka. This finding suggests a strong influence of high-latitude ice-sheet dynamics on Asian monsoonal conditions during the early interglacial period. An abrupt end of the marine isotope stage 5e at 118.8 ± 0.6 ka was probably caused by the internal climate system threshold effects.

  12. Influences of spawning timing, water temperature, and climatic warming on early life history phenology in western Alaska sockeye salmon

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    Sparks, Morgan M.; Falke, Jeffrey A.; Quinn, Thomas P.; Adkison, Milo D.; Schindler, Daniel E.; Bartz, Krista K.; Young, Daniel B.; Westley, Peter A. H.

    2018-01-01

    We applied an empirical model to predict hatching and emergence timing for 25 western Alaska sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) populations in four lake-nursery systems to explore current patterns and potential responses of early life history phenology to warming water temperatures. Given experienced temperature regimes during development, we predicted hatching to occur in as few as 58 d to as many as 260 d depending on spawning timing and temperature. For a focal lake spawning population, our climate-lake temperature model predicted a water temperature increase of 0.7 to 1.4 °C from 2015 to 2099 during the incubation period, which translated to a 16 d to 30 d earlier hatching timing. The most extreme scenarios of warming advanced development by approximately a week earlier than historical minima and thus climatic warming may lead to only modest shifts in phenology during the early life history stage of this population. The marked variation in the predicted timing of hatching and emergence among populations in close proximity on the landscape may serve to buffer this metapopulation from climate change.

  13. 3D Architecture and evolution of the Po Plain-Northern Adriatic Foreland basin during Plio-Pleistocene time

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    Amadori, Chiara; Toscani, Giovanni; Ghielmi, Manlio; Maesano, Francesco Emanuele; D'Ambrogi, Chiara; Lombardi, Stefano; Milanesi, Riccardo; Panara, Yuri; Di Giulio, Andrea

    2017-04-01

    The Pliocene-Pleistocene tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the eastern Po Plain and northern Adriatic Foreland Basin (PPAF) (extended ca. 35,000 km2) was the consequence of severe Northern Apennine compressional activity and climate-driven eustatic changes. According with the 2D seismic interpretation, facies analysis and sequence stratigraphy approach by Ghielmi et al. (2013 and references therein), these tectono-eustatic phases generated six basin-scale unconformities referred as Base Pliocene (PL1), Intra-Zanclean (PL2), Intra-Piacenzian (PL3), Gelasian (PL4), Base Calabrian (PS1) and Late Calabrian (PS2). We present a basin-wide detailed 3D model of the PPAF region, derived from the interpretation of these unconformities in a dense network of seismic lines (ca. 6,000 km) correlated with more than 200 well stratigraphies (courtesy of ENI E&P). The initial 3D time-model has been time-to-depth converted using the 3D velocity model created with Vel-IO 3D, a tool for 3D depth conversions and then validated and integrated with depth domain dataset from bibliography and well log. Resultant isobath and isopach maps are produced to inspect step-by-step the basin paleogeographic evolution; it occurred through alternating stages of simple and fragmented foredeeps. Changes in the basin geometry through time, from the inner sector located in the Emilia-Romagna Apennines to the outermost region (Veneto and northern Adriatic Sea), were marked by repeated phases of outward migration of two large deep depocenters located in front of Emilia arcs on the west, and in front of Ferrara-Romagna thrusts on the east. During late Pliocene-early Pleistocene, the inner side of the Emilia-Romagna arcs evolved into an elongated deep thrust-top basin due to a strong foredeep fragmentation then, an overall tectono-stratigraphic analysis shows also a decreasing trend of tectonic intensity of the Northern Apennine since Pleistocene until present.

  14. Malaria early warning tool: linking inter-annual climate and malaria variability in northern Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands.

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    Smith, Jason; Tahani, Lloyd; Bobogare, Albino; Bugoro, Hugo; Otto, Francis; Fafale, George; Hiriasa, David; Kazazic, Adna; Beard, Grant; Amjadali, Amanda; Jeanne, Isabelle

    2017-11-21

    Malaria control remains a significant challenge in the Solomon Islands. Despite progress made by local malaria control agencies over the past decade, case rates remain high in some areas of the country. Studies from around the world have confirmed important links between climate and malaria transmission. This study focuses on understanding the links between malaria and climate in Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, with a view towards developing a climate-based monitoring and early warning for periods of enhanced malaria transmission. Climate records were sourced from the Solomon Islands meteorological service (SIMS) and historical malaria case records were sourced from the National Vector-Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP). A declining trend in malaria cases over the last decade associated with improved malaria control was adjusted for. A stepwise regression was performed between climate variables and climate-associated malaria transmission (CMT) at different lag intervals to determine where significant relationships existed. The suitability of these results for use in a three-tiered categorical warning system was then assessed using a Mann-Whitney U test. Of the climate variables considered, only rainfall had a consistently significant relationship with malaria in North Guadalcanal. Optimal lag intervals were determined for prediction using R 2 skill scores. A highly significant negative correlation (R = - 0.86, R 2  = 0.74, p malaria transmission periods in January-June. Cross-validation emphasized the suitability of this relationship for forecasting purposes [Formula: see text]  as did Mann-Whitney U test results showing that rainfall below or above specific thresholds was significantly associated with above or below normal malaria transmission, respectively. This study demonstrated that rainfall provides the best predictor of malaria transmission in North Guadalcanal. This relationship is thought to be underpinned by the unique hydrological conditions

  15. Implications of climate change for agricultural productivity in the early twenty-first century.

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    Gornall, Jemma; Betts, Richard; Burke, Eleanor; Clark, Robin; Camp, Joanne; Willett, Kate; Wiltshire, Andrew

    2010-09-27

    This paper reviews recent literature concerning a wide range of processes through which climate change could potentially impact global-scale agricultural productivity, and presents projections of changes in relevant meteorological, hydrological and plant physiological quantities from a climate model ensemble to illustrate key areas of uncertainty. Few global-scale assessments have been carried out, and these are limited in their ability to capture the uncertainty in climate projections, and omit potentially important aspects such as extreme events and changes in pests and diseases. There is a lack of clarity on how climate change impacts on drought are best quantified from an agricultural perspective, with different metrics giving very different impressions of future risk. The dependence of some regional agriculture on remote rainfall, snowmelt and glaciers adds to the complexity. Indirect impacts via sea-level rise, storms and diseases have not been quantified. Perhaps most seriously, there is high uncertainty in the extent to which the direct effects of CO(2) rise on plant physiology will interact with climate change in affecting productivity. At present, the aggregate impacts of climate change on global-scale agricultural productivity cannot be reliably quantified.

  16. Pleistocene aridification cycles shaped the contemporary genetic architecture of Southern African baboons.

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    Riashna Sithaldeen

    Full Text Available Plio-Pleistocene environmental change influenced the evolutionary history of many animal lineages in Africa, highlighting key roles for both climate and tectonics in the evolution of Africa's faunal diversity. Here, we explore diversification in the southern African chacma baboon Papio ursinus sensu lato and reveal a dominant role for increasingly arid landscapes during past glacial cycles in shaping contemporary genetic structure. Recent work on baboons (Papio spp. supports complex lineage structuring with a dominant pulse of diversification occurring 1-2Ma, and yet the link to palaeoenvironmental change remains largely untested. Phylogeographic reconstruction based on mitochondrial DNA sequence data supports a scenario where chacma baboon populations were likely restricted to refugia during periods of regional cooling and drying through the Late Pleistocene. The two lineages of chacma baboon, ursinus and griseipes, are strongly geographically structured, and demographic reconstruction together with spatial analysis of genetic variation point to possible climate-driven isolating events where baboons may have retreated to more optimum conditions during cooler, drier periods. Our analysis highlights a period of continuous population growth beginning in the Middle to Late Pleistocene in both the ursinus and the PG2 griseipes lineages. All three clades identified in the study then enter a state of declining population size (Nef through to the Holocene; this is particularly marked in the last 20,000 years, most likely coincident with the Last Glacial Maximum. The pattern recovered here conforms to expectations based on the dynamic regional climate trends in southern Africa through the Pleistocene and provides further support for complex patterns of diversification in the region's biodiversity.

  17. Effects of Pleistocene sea-level fluctuations on mangrove population dynamics: a lesson from Sonneratia alba.

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    Yang, Yuchen; Li, Jianfang; Yang, Shuhuan; Li, Xinnian; Fang, Lu; Zhong, Cairong; Duke, Norman C; Zhou, Renchao; Shi, Suhua

    2017-01-18

    A large-scale systematical investigation of the influence of Pleistocene climate oscillation on mangrove population dynamics could enrich our knowledge about the evolutionary history during times of historical climate change, which in turn may provide important information for their conservation. In this study, phylogeography of a mangrove tree Sonneratia alba was studied by sequencing three chloroplast fragments and seven nuclear genes. A low level of genetic diversity at the population level was detected across its range, especially at the range margins, which was mainly attributed to the steep sea-level drop and associated climate fluctuations during the Pleistocene glacial periods. Extremely small effective population size (Ne) was inferred in populations from both eastern and western Malay Peninsula (44 and 396, respectively), mirroring the fragility of mangrove plants and their paucity of robustness against future climate perturbations and human activity. Two major genetic lineages of high divergence were identified in the two mangrove biodiversity centres: the Indo-Malesia and Australasia regions. The estimated splitting time between these two lineages was 3.153 million year ago (MYA), suggesting a role for pre-Pleistocene events in shaping the major diversity patterns of mangrove species. Within the Indo-Malesia region, a subdivision was implicated between the South China Sea (SCS) and the remaining area with a divergence time of 1.874 MYA, corresponding to glacial vicariance when the emerged Sunda Shelf halted genetic exchange between the western and eastern coasts of the Malay Peninsula during Pleistocene sea-level drops. Notably, genetic admixture was observed in populations at the boundary regions, especially in the two populations near the Malacca Strait, indicating secondary contact between divergent lineages during interglacial periods. These interregional genetic exchanges provided ample opportunity for the re-use of standing genetic variation

  18. Sequence stratigraphy and environmental background of the late Pleistocene and Holocene occupation in the Southeast Primor'ye (the Russian Far East)

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    Chlachula, Jiri; Krupyanko, Alexander A.

    2016-06-01

    The paper presents the results of Quaternary palaeoecology and geoarchaeology studies in the Zerkal'naya Basin, with new insights about sequenced natural shifts during the prehistoric occupation of this marginally explored NE Asian maritime territory. The Basin is part of the continental drainage system and the main physiographic and biotic corridor for peopling of the transitive coastal interior SE Primor'ye Region. The Final Pleistocene and Holocene environmental (biotic and abiotic) proxy records from the Upper/Final Palaeolithic to early historical sites document a dynamic climate change with vegetation cover transformations within riverine and mountain valley ecosystems of the Russian Far East. Most of the archaeological sites located on the low terraces and bedrock promontories along the main river channel and its tributary streams suggest traditional hunter gathered lifestyles based on seasonal salmon-fishing supplemented by pastoral economy. Tundra-forests with larch trees, dwarf birch thickets and polypod ferns from the basal stratigraphic units of the late Last Glacial occupation sites associated with the Upper Palaeolithic micro-blade and bifacial stone tool traditions (14C-dated to 19,000-12,000 cal yrs BP) indicate rather pronounced conditions and much lower MAT comparing today. Following a final Pleistocene cooling event, a major climate warming marked the onset of Holocene accompanied by a regional humidity increase promoting the formation of a mixed broadleaved-coniferous oak-dominant taiga, and culminating in the mid-Holocene Climatic Optimum. The appearance of mosaic parklands ca. 5,000-4,000 cal yrs BP. may be partly attributed to the expansion of the Far Eastern Neolithic cultures practicing forest clearance for pastures and dwellings. A progressing landscape opening indicated by the spread of light-demanding thickets and birch-dominated riverine biotopes with Artemisia suggests a further vegetation cover transformation during the late Neolithic

  19. Pollen reconstructions, tree-rings and early climate data from Minnesota, USA: a cautionary tale of bias and signal attentuation

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    St-Jacques, J. M.; Cumming, B. F.; Smol, J. P.; Sauchyn, D.

    2015-12-01

    High-resolution proxy reconstructions are essential to assess the rate and magnitude of anthropogenic global warming. High-resolution pollen records are being critically examined for the production of accurate climate reconstructions of the last millennium, often as extensions of tree-ring records. Past climate inference from a sedimentary pollen record depends upon the stationarity of the pollen-climate relationship. However, humans have directly altered vegetation, and hence modern pollen deposition is a product of landscape disturbance and climate, unlike in the past with its dominance of climate-derived processes. This could cause serious bias in pollen reconstructions. In the US Midwest, direct human impacts have greatly altered the vegetation and pollen rain since Euro-American settlement in the mid-19th century. Using instrumental climate data from the early 1800s from Fort Snelling (Minnesota), we assessed the bias from the conventional method of inferring climate from pollen assemblages in comparison to a calibration set from pre-settlement pollen assemblages and the earliest instrumental climate data. The pre-settlement calibration set provides more accurate reconstructions of 19th century temperature than the modern set does. When both calibration sets are used to reconstruct temperatures since AD 1116 from a varve-dated pollen record from Lake Mina, Minnesota, the conventional method produces significant low-frequency (centennial-scale) signal attenuation and positive bias of 0.8-1.7 oC, resulting in an overestimation of Little Ice Age temperature and an underestimation of anthropogenic warming. We also compared the pollen-inferred moisture reconstruction to a four-century tree-ring-inferred moisture record from Minnesota and Dakotas, which shows that the tree-ring reconstruction is biased towards dry conditions and records wet periods relatively poorly, giving a false impression of regional aridity. The tree-ring chronology also suggests varve

  20. A terrestrial Pliocene-Pleistocene temperature record from North-Western Europe

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    Dearing Crampton Flood, Emily; Peterse, Francien; Munsterman, Dirk; Sinninghe Damste, Jaap

    2016-04-01

    The Mid-Pliocene Warm Period (MPWP) (ca 3.3 to 3.0 Ma) is the most recent geological interval that serves as an appropriate analogue to our current climate for two main reasons. Firstly, atmospheric CO2 levels were similar (400 - 450 ppmv) to present day levels. Secondly, continental configurations during the Pliocene were largely similar to the present day. The MPWP is especially interesting regarding future climate predictions as global temperatures were roughly 2 - 3 °C warmer than present, indicating that current climate may not yet be in equilibrium. Reconstructions of MPWP sea surface temperatures (SSTs) indicate SSTs were warmer than present, particularly at high latitudes (ΔSST = 2 - 6 °C). However, continental temperatures for this interval remain poorly constrained due to a lack of trustworthy proxies, and scarcity of terrestrial sedimentary archives. Here we analysed branched GDGTs (brGDGTs) in a sediment core from the Netherlands to reconstruct continental mean air temperatures (MAT) in North-Western Europe during the Early Pliocene to mid-Pleistocene. BrGDGTs are membrane lipids of organisms living predominantly in soils whose relative distributions relate with the temperature and pH of the soil in which they are biosynthesized. BrGDGTs can be delivered to coastal marine sediments by fluvially transported soil material. Due to the coastal position of the sample site, land-sea climate correlations can be studied by analysing temperature-sensitive marine biomarkers, i.e. alkenones and long chain diols, in the same sediment, and subsequently applying the Uk37', TEX86, and long chain diol index (LDI) paleothermometers. The obtained MAT record can be divided into four main events: two small 'glacial' events, the MPWP, and the onset of Northern Hemisphere glaciation marking the onset of the Pleistocene, the latter being characterized by unstable and fluctuating temperatures. The glacial periods have been tentatively assigned according to the De Schepper

  1. Constraining the climate and ocean pH of the early Earth with a geological carbon cycle model

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    Krissansen-Totton, Joshua; Arney, Giada N.; Catling, David C.

    2018-04-01

    The early Earth’s environment is controversial. Climatic estimates range from hot to glacial, and inferred marine pH spans strongly alkaline to acidic. Better understanding of early climate and ocean chemistry would improve our knowledge of the origin of life and its coevolution with the environment. Here, we use a geological carbon cycle model with ocean chemistry to calculate self-consistent histories of climate and ocean pH. Our carbon cycle model includes an empirically justified temperature and pH dependence of seafloor weathering, allowing the relative importance of continental and seafloor weathering to be evaluated. We find that the Archean climate was likely temperate (0–50 °C) due to the combined negative feedbacks of continental and seafloor weathering. Ocean pH evolves monotonically from 6.6‑0.4+0.6 (2σ) at 4.0 Ga to 7.0‑0.5+0.7 (2σ) at the Archean–Proterozoic boundary, and to 7.9‑0.2+0.1 (2σ) at the Proterozoic–Phanerozoic boundary. This evolution is driven by the secular decline of pCO2, which in turn is a consequence of increasing solar luminosity, but is moderated by carbonate alkalinity delivered from continental and seafloor weathering. Archean seafloor weathering may have been a comparable carbon sink to continental weathering, but is less dominant than previously assumed, and would not have induced global glaciation. We show how these conclusions are robust to a wide range of scenarios for continental growth, internal heat flow evolution and outgassing history, greenhouse gas abundances, and changes in the biotic enhancement of weathering.

  2. Constraining the climate and ocean pH of the early Earth with a geological carbon cycle model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krissansen-Totton, Joshua; Arney, Giada N; Catling, David C

    2018-04-17

    The early Earth's environment is controversial. Climatic estimates range from hot to glacial, and inferred marine pH spans strongly alkaline to acidic. Better understanding of early climate and ocean chemistry would improve our knowledge of the origin of life and its coevolution with the environment. Here, we use a geological carbon cycle model with ocean chemistry to calculate self-consistent histories of climate and ocean pH. Our carbon cycle model includes an empirically justified temperature and pH dependence of seafloor weathering, allowing the relative importance of continental and seafloor weathering to be evaluated. We find that the Archean climate was likely temperate (0-50 °C) due to the combined negative feedbacks of continental and seafloor weathering. Ocean pH evolves monotonically from [Formula: see text] (2σ) at 4.0 Ga to [Formula: see text] (2σ) at the Archean-Proterozoic boundary, and to [Formula: see text] (2σ) at the Proterozoic-Phanerozoic boundary. This evolution is driven by the secular decline of pCO 2 , which in turn is a consequence of increasing solar luminosity, but is moderated by carbonate alkalinity delivered from continental and seafloor weathering. Archean seafloor weathering may have been a comparable carbon sink to continental weathering, but is less dominant than previously assumed, and would not have induced global glaciation. We show how these conclusions are robust to a wide range of scenarios for continental growth, internal heat flow evolution and outgassing history, greenhouse gas abundances, and changes in the biotic enhancement of weathering. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  3. A comparative study of frontal bone morphology among Pleistocene hominin fossil groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athreya, Sheela

    2009-12-01

    Features of the frontal bone that are conventionally used to distinguish among fossil hominin groups were quantitatively examined. Fifty-five fossil crania dating from the early to the late Pleistocene were analyzed. Using a modified pantograph, outlines of the frontal bone were collected along the midsagittal and two parasagittal planes. The profile from nasion to bregma, as well as two profiles above the medial and lateral sections of the orbit, respectively, extending from the orbital margin to the coronal suture were traced. The outlines were measured using Elliptical Fourier Function Analysis (EFFA), which enabled a quantification of aspects of the frontal bone that have historically been described primarily in nonmetric or linear terms. Four measurements were obtained: 1) overall morphology as expressed in the Fourier harmonic amplitudes; 2) maximum projection of the supraorbital torus at three points along the browridge (glabella and the medial and lateral aspects of the torus above the orbit); 3) maximum distance of the frontal squama from the frontal chord, capturing forehead curvature; and 4) nasion-bregma chord length. The results indicate that the midsagittal profile is significantly different among all Pleistocene groups in analyses that include both size and shape, as well as size-adjusted data. Homo erectus is significantly different from the late Pleistocene groups (Neandertals and early modern H. sapiens) in glabellar projection. Anatomically modern humans are significantly different from all other groups in both raw and size-standardized analyses of all three outlines that captured overall morphology, as well as forehead curvature and lateral supraorbital torus prominence, and middle Pleistocene Homo are significantly different in both medial and lateral overall parasagittal form. However, for the majority of analyses there were no significant differences among the Pleistocene archaic groups in supraorbital torus projection, frontal squama

  4. Phylogeographic patterns of Hawaiian Megalagrion damselflies (Odonata: Coenagrionidae) correlate with Pleistocene island boundaries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, Stephen A.; Simon, C.; Foote, D.; Englund, R.A.

    2005-01-01

    The Pleistocene geological history of the Hawaiian Islands is becoming well understood. Numerous predictions about the influence of this history on the genetic diversity of Hawaiian organisms have been made, including the idea that changing sea levels would lead to the genetic differentiation of populations isolated on individual volcanoes during high sea stands. Here, we analyse DNA sequence data from two closely related, endemic Hawaiian damselfly species in order to test these predictions, and generate novel insights into the effects of Pleistocene glaciation and climate change on island organisms. Megalagrion xanthomelas and Megalagrion pacificum are currently restricted to five islands, including three islands of the Maui Nui super-island complex (Molokai, Lanai, and Maui) that were connected during periods of Pleistocene glaciation, and Hawaii island, which has never been subdivided. Maui Nui and Hawaii are effectively a controlled, natural experiment on the genetic effects of Pleistocene sea level change. We confirm well-defined morphological species boundaries using data from the nuclear EF-1?? gene and show that the species are reciprocally monophyletic. We perform phylogeographic analyses of 663 base pairs (bp) of cytochrome oxidase subunit II (COII) gene sequence data from 157 individuals representing 25 populations. Our results point to the importance of Pleistocene land bridges and historical island habitat availability in maintaining inter-island gene flow. We also propose that repeated bottlenecks on Maui Nui caused by sea level change and restricted habitat availability are likely responsible for low genetic diversity there. An island analogue to northern genetic purity and southern diversity is proposed, whereby islands with little suitable habitat exhibit genetic purity while islands with more exhibit genetic diversity. ?? 2005 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  5. Early Mission Maneuver Operations for the Deep Space Climate Observatory Sun-Earth L1 Libration Point Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Craig; Case, Sara; Reagoso, John; Webster, Cassandra

    2015-01-01

    The Deep Space Climate Observatory mission launched on February 11, 2015, and inserted onto a transfer trajectory toward a Lissajous orbit around the Sun-Earth L1 libration point. This paper presents an overview of the baseline transfer orbit and early mission maneuver operations leading up to the start of nominal science orbit operations. In particular, the analysis and performance of the spacecraft insertion, mid-course correction maneuvers, and the deep-space Lissajous orbit insertion maneuvers are discussed, com-paring the baseline orbit with actual mission results and highlighting mission and operations constraints..

  6. Millennial-scale climate variations recorded in Early Pliocene colour reflectance time series from the lacustrine Ptolemais Basin (NW Greece)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steenbrink, J.; Kloosterboer-van Hoeve, M. L.; Hilgen, F. J.

    2003-03-01

    Quaternary climate proxy records show compelling evidence for climate variability on time scales of a few thousand years. The causes for these millennial-scale or sub-Milankovitch cycles are still poorly understood, not least due to the complex feedback mechanisms of large ice sheets during the Quaternary. We present evidence of millennial-scale climate variability in Early Pliocene lacustrine sediments from the intramontane Ptolemais Basin in northwestern Greece. The sediments are well exposed in a series of open-pit lignite mines and exhibit a distinct millennial-scale sedimentary cyclicity of alternating lignites and lacustrine marl beds that resulted from precession-induced variations in climate. The higher-frequency, millennial-scale cyclicity is particularly prominent within the grey-coloured marl segment of individual cycles. A stratigraphic interval of ˜115 ka, covering five precession-induced sedimentary cycles, was studied in nine parallel sections from two open-pit lignite mines located several km apart. High-resolution colour reflectance records were used to quantify the within-cycle variability and to determine its lateral continuity. Much of the within-cycle variability could be correlated between the parallel sections, even in fine detail, which suggests that these changes reflect basin-wide variations in environmental conditions related to (regional) climate fluctuations. Interbedded volcanic ash beds demonstrate the synchronicity of these fluctuations and spectral analysis of the reflectance time series shows a significant concentration of within-cycle variability at periods of ˜11, ˜5.5 and ˜2 ka. The occurrence of variability at such time scales at times before the intensification of the Northern Hemisphere glaciation suggests that they cannot solely have resulted from internal ice-sheet dynamics. Possible candidates include harmonics or combination tones of the main orbital cycles, variations in solar output or periodic motions of the Earth

  7. Climatic Reliability of Electronics: Early Prediction and Control of Contamination and humidity effects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verdingovas, Vadimas

    were to a significant extent guided by the climatic reliability issues the electronic companies are currently facing. The research in this thesis is focused on the synergistic effects of process related contamination, humidity, potential bias, and PCBA design related aspects, while various tests...... assuming parasitic circuit due to water layer formation on the PCBA surface. The chapters 2-5 review the factors influencing the climatic reliability of electronics namely humidity interaction with materials and ionic contamination on the PCBA surface, common types and sources of ionic contamination...... in electronics, the test methods and techniques, and failure mechanisms related to climate and contamination. Chapter 6 summarizes the materials and experimental methods employed in this thesis. The results of various investigations are presented as individual research papers as published or in the draft form...

  8. Local adaptation in brown trout early life-history traits: implications for climate change adaptability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, L.F.; Hansen, Michael Møller; Pertoldi, C.

    2008-01-01

    to adapt. Temperature-related adaptability in traits related to phenology and early life history are expected to be particularly important in salmonid fishes. We focused on the latter and investigated whether four populations of brown trout (Salmo trutta) are locally adapted in early life-history traits...

  9. A Late Pleistocene sea level stack

    OpenAIRE

    Spratt Rachel M; Lisiecki Lorraine E

    2016-01-01

    Late Pleistocene sea level has been reconstructed from ocean sediment core data using a wide variety of proxies and models. However, the accuracy of individual reconstructions is limited by measurement error, local variations in salinity and temperature, and assumptions particular to each technique. Here we present a sea level stack (average) which increases the signal-to-noise ratio of individual reconstructions. Specifically, we perform principal componen...

  10. El registro más completo de un Hoplophorini (Xenarthra: Glyptodontidae para los Pisos/Edades Chapadmalalense-Marplatense (Plioceno tardío-Pleistoceno temprano The most complete record of a Hoplophorini (Xenarthra: Glyptodontidae for the Chapadmalalan-Marplatan Stages (Late Pliocene-Early Pleistocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfredo E Zurita

    2011-06-01

    by Paraglyptodon chapadmalensis (Ameghino in Rovereto, a fossil guide of the Upper Chapadmalalan Stage, and the Plohophorini Plohophorus figuratus Ameghino. On the other hand, the "Hoplophorinae" Hoplophorini are glyptodonts that have its first records during the Huayquerian (late Miocene and "Araucanian" Stages (late Miocene-early Pliocene, but they are almost absents during the Chapadmalalan-Marplatan Stages (Pliocene-early Pleistocene. Later, the Hoplophorini (Neosclerocalyptus Paula Couto are, together with Glyptodon Owen, the most common South American Pleistocene Glyptodontidae. In this contribution we report the first record of a Chapadmalalan Hoplophorini, assigned to the genus Eosclerocalyptus C. Ameghino (Eosclerocalyptus cf. E. lineatus, coming from the Mar del Plata locality, Buenos Aires province (Argentina. This new material, represented by a complete dorsal carapace, was exhumed from the upper section of the Chapadmalalan Formation. From a morphological perspective, this dorsal carapace shows an intermediate size between E. tapinocephalus Cabrera, E. proximus (Moreno & Mercerat and Neosclerocalyptus Paula Couto. Together with cf. Paraglyptodon chapadmalensis and Plohophorus figuratus Ameghino those records represents the most entire Pliocene Glyptodontidae known and, in addition, it partially complete the stratigraphical distribution of the Glyptodontidae Hoplophorini.

  11. The feasibility of ambitious climate agreements. Norway as an early test case

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andresen, Steinar; Kolshus, Hans H.; Torvanger, Asbjoern

    2002-09-01

    There are considerable differences between developed countries as to how difficult it will be to meet their commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. 'High-cost abatement countries' are particularly interesting as they can be seen as 'test-cases' for other nations in more ambitious climate policy agreements. We assume that a country's objective is to develop an efficient climate policy, achieving cost effectiveness and environmental effectiveness, and that also is politically feasible. Norway is among the countries that will have a hard time in meeting their obligations. Our study suggests that Norway's climate policy has emphasized an international approach, whereas the domestic performance on cost effectiveness has been more moderate. An obvious reason for this is the lower cost associated with the international approach. A 'political cost' associated with such a policy can be criticism from environmental NGOs and other countries. At least in the near term there is little reason to expect 'climate enthusiasm' from the public or many countries of the world. Therefore, just like Norway, they will want emissions reductions carried out as cheaply as possible, which could imply extensive international quota trading, whereas compromises with regard to cost effectiveness are struck at the domestic scene for political feasibility reasons. (author)

  12. METODOLOGÍA ARQUEOLÓGICA DE EXCAVACIÓN EN BRECHA DE UN YACIMIENTO DEL PLEISTOCENO INFERIOR: EL CHAPARRAL (VILLALUENGA DEL ROSARIO, CÁDIZ, ESPAÑA (Excavating in Breccia in an Early Pleistocene Site: El Chaparral (Villaluenga del Rosario, Cádiz, Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Salvador Fernández-Sánchez

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available El Chaparral es un yacimiento ubicado en Villaluenga del Rosario (Cádiz, España, caracterizado por presentar un contexto sedimentológico propio de sistemas exokársticos. Su registro arqueológico está dominado por restos de macrofauna y microfauna cuyo análisis ha arrojado cronologías de entre 1-1,2 Ma, por tanto con adscripción al Pleistoceno Inferior. Desde su descubrimiento en 2009, se vio la dificultad de su excavación por la gran presencia de bloques cementados en brechas de arcilla compacta. Esta problemática obligó a diseñar una metodología propia que permitiese la recuperación controlada de los bloques de brecha para su posterior tratamiento en laboratorio. En este trabajo presentamos la metodología desarrollada durante estos trabajos, así como los resultados obtenidos gracias a su aplicación. ENGLISH: El Chaparral is a paleontological site (Villaluenga del Rosario, Cádiz, Spain characterized by a sedimentological context typical of exokarstic systems. Macro- and microfaunal analysis indicates a chronology between 1–1.2 Ma, placing this site on the Early Pleistocene. From its discovery, El Chaparral has presented an excavation challenge, as it contains cemented blocks of compact clay breccia. This forced us to design a methodology allowing controlled recovery of breccia blocks for subsequent treatment in the laboratory. In this paper, we describe the methodology and present the results of our analysis.

  13. Reconstructing Climate Change: The Model-Data Ping-Pong

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stocker, T. F.

    2017-12-01

    When Cesare Emiliani, the father of paleoceanography, made the first attempts at a quantitative reconstruction of Pleistocene climate change in the early 1950s, climate models were not yet conceived. The understanding of paleoceanographic records was therefore limited, and scientists had to resort to plausibility arguments to interpret their data. With the advent of coupled climate models in the early 1970s, for the first time hypotheses about climate processes and climate change could be tested in a dynamically consistent framework. However, only a model hierarchy can cope with the long time scales and the multi-component physical-biogeochemical Earth System. There are many examples how climate models have inspired the interpretation of paleoclimate data on the one hand, and conversely, how data have questioned long-held concepts and models. In this lecture I critically revisit a few examples of this model-data ping-pong, such as the bipolar seesaw, the mid-Holocene greenhouse gas increase, millennial and rapid CO2 changes reconstructed from polar ice cores, and the interpretation of novel paleoceanographic tracers. These examples also highlight many of the still unsolved questions and provide guidance for future research. The combination of high-resolution paleoceanographic data and modeling has never been more relevant than today. It will be the key for an appropriate risk assessment of impacts on the Earth System that are already underway in the Anthropocene.

  14. Climate change and early human land-use in a biodiversity hotspot, the Afromontane region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivory, S.; Russell, J. M.; Sax, D. F.; Early, R.

    2015-12-01

    African ecosystems are at great risk due to climate and land-use change. Paleo-records illustrate that changes in precipitation and temperature have led to dramatic alterations of African vegetation distribution over the Quaternary; however, despite the fact that the link between mankind and the environment has a longer history in the African tropics than anywhere else on earth, very little is known about pre-colonial land-use. Disentangling the influence of each is particularly critical in areas of exceptional biodiversity and endemism, such as the Afromontane forest region. This region is generally considered to be highly sensitive to temperature and thus at risk to future climate change. However, new evidence suggests that some high elevation species may have occupied warmer areas in the past and thus are not strongly limited by temperature and may be at greater risk from intensifying land-use. First, we use species distribution models constructed from modern and paleo-distributions of high elevation forests in order to evaluate differences in the climatic space occupied today compared to the past. We find that although modern Afromontane species ranges occupy very narrow climate conditions, and in particular that most species occur only in cold areas, in the past most species have tolerated warmer conditions. This suggests that many montane tree species are not currently limited by warm temperatures, and that the region has already seen significant reduction in the climate space occupied, possibly from Holocene land-use. Second, to evaluate human impacts on montane populations, we examine paleoecological records from lakes throughout sub-Saharan Africa that capture ecological processes at difference time scales to reconstruct Afromontane forest range changes. Over long time scales, we observe phases of forest expansion in the lowlands associated with climate variability alone where composition varies little from phase to phase but include both modern low and

  15. The silence of the layers: Archaeological site visibility in the Pleistocene-Holocene transition at the Ebro Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alday, Alfonso; Domingo, Rafael; Sebastián, María; Soto, Adriana; Aranbarri, Josu; González-Sampériz, Penélope; Sampietro-Vattuone, María Marta; Utrilla, Pilar; Montes, Lourdes; Peña-Monné, José Luis

    2018-03-01

    The Ebro Basin constitutes one of the most representative territories in SW Europe for the study of prehistoric societies during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. The correlation of palaeoenvironmental and geomorphological proxies obtained from sedimentary records with chronologically well-constrained reference archaeological sites has allowed defining this time frame precisely, such that three main pilot areas haven been broadly depicted: the Alavese region, the Pre-Pyrenees and the Bajo Aragón. Overall, the human imprint in the Ebro Basin was rare during the Upper Palaeolithic, but more visible from the Upper Magdalenian (14500-13500 cal BP) to Neolithic times (up to 5500 cal BP). Local environmental resources were continuously managed by the prehistoric communities in the different areas of study. In fact, the Ebro Basin acted during those millennia as a whole, developing the same cultural trends, industrial techniques and settlement patterns in parallel throughout the territory. However, some gaps exist in the 14C frequency curve (SCDPD curve). This is partially related to prehistoric sites in particular lithologies and geological structures that could have partly been lost by erosional processes, especially during the Early Holocene. In addition, this gap also parallels the reconstructed climate trend for the Pre-Pyrenean and the Bajo Aragón areas, which are defined by high frequencies of xerophilous flora until ca. 9500 cal BP, suggesting that continental climate features could have hampered the presence of well-established human communities in inland regions. The interdisciplinary research (archaeology, geomorphology and palaeoclimatology) discussed in this paper offers clues to understand the existence of fills and gaps in the archaeological record of the Ebro Basin, and can be applied in other territories with similar geographic and climate patterns.

  16. Bifurcation structure and noise assisted transitions in the Pleistocene glacial cycles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ditlevsen, Peter

    2009-01-01

    history. It indicates the dynamical origin of the mid-Pleistocene transition from the "41 ka world'' to the "100 ka world.'' The dominant forcing in the latter is still the 41 ka obliquity cycle, but the bifurcation structure of the climate system is changed. The model suggests that transitions between......The glacial cycles are attributed to the climatic response of the orbital changes in the irradiance to the Earth. These changes in the forcing are too small to explain the observed climate variations as simple linear responses. Nonlinear amplifications of the orbital forcing are necessary...... to account for the glacial cycles. Here an empirical model of the nonlinear response is presented. From the model it is possible to assess the role of stochastic noise in comparison to the deterministic orbital forcing of the ice ages. The model is based on the bifurcation structure derived from the climate...

  17. Antarctic climate and ice-sheet configuration during the early Pliocene interglacial at 4.23 Ma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. R. Golledge

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The geometry of Antarctic ice sheets during warm periods of the geological past is difficult to determine from geological evidence, but is important to know because such reconstructions enable a more complete understanding of how the ice-sheet system responds to changes in climate. Here we investigate how Antarctica evolved under orbital and greenhouse gas conditions representative of an interglacial in the early Pliocene at 4.23 Ma, when Southern Hemisphere insolation reached a maximum. Using offline-coupled climate and ice-sheet models, together with a new synthesis of high-latitude palaeoenvironmental proxy data to define a likely climate envelope, we simulate a range of ice-sheet geometries and calculate their likely contribution to sea level. In addition, we use these simulations to investigate the processes by which the West and East Antarctic ice sheets respond to environmental forcings and the timescales over which these behaviours manifest. We conclude that the Antarctic ice sheet contributed 8.6 ± 2.8 m to global sea level at this time, under an atmospheric CO2 concentration identical to present (400 ppm. Warmer-than-present ocean temperatures led to the collapse of West Antarctica over centuries, whereas higher air temperatures initiated surface melting in parts of East Antarctica that over one to two millennia led to lowering of the ice-sheet surface, flotation of grounded margins in some areas, and retreat of the ice sheet into the Wilkes Subglacial Basin. The results show that regional variations in climate, ice-sheet geometry, and topography produce long-term sea-level contributions that are non-linear with respect to the applied forcings, and which under certain conditions exhibit threshold behaviour associated with behavioural tipping points.

  18. Antarctic climate and ice-sheet configuration during the early Pliocene interglacial at 4.23 Ma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golledge, Nicholas R.; Thomas, Zoë A.; Levy, Richard H.; Gasson, Edward G. W.; Naish, Timothy R.; McKay, Robert M.; Kowalewski, Douglas E.; Fogwill, Christopher J.

    2017-07-01

    The geometry of Antarctic ice sheets during warm periods of the geological past is difficult to determine from geological evidence, but is important to know because such reconstructions enable a more complete understanding of how the ice-sheet system responds to changes in climate. Here we investigate how Antarctica evolved under orbital and greenhouse gas conditions representative of an interglacial in the early Pliocene at 4.23 Ma, when Southern Hemisphere insolation reached a maximum. Using offline-coupled climate and ice-sheet models, together with a new synthesis of high-latitude palaeoenvironmental proxy data to define a likely climate envelope, we simulate a range of ice-sheet geometries and calculate their likely contribution to sea level. In addition, we use these simulations to investigate the processes by which the West and East Antarctic ice sheets respond to environmental forcings and the timescales over which these behaviours manifest. We conclude that the Antarctic ice sheet contributed 8.6 ± 2.8 m to global sea level at this time, under an atmospheric CO2 concentration identical to present (400 ppm). Warmer-than-present ocean temperatures led to the collapse of West Antarctica over centuries, whereas higher air temperatures initiated surface melting in parts of East Antarctica that over one to two millennia led to lowering of the ice-sheet surface, flotation of grounded margins in some areas, and retreat of the ice sheet into the Wilkes Subglacial Basin. The results show that regional variations in climate, ice-sheet geometry, and topography produce long-term sea-level contributions that are non-linear with respect to the applied forcings, and which under certain conditions exhibit threshold behaviour associated with behavioural tipping points.

  19. Climate and demography in early prehistory: using calibrated (14)C dates as population proxies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riede, Felix

    2009-04-01

    Although difficult to estimate for prehistoric hunter-gatherer populations, demographic variables-population size, density, and the connectedness of demes-are critical for a better understanding of the processes of material culture change, especially in deep prehistory. Demography is the middle-range link between climatic changes and both biological and cultural evolutionary trajectories of human populations. Much of human material culture functions as a buffer against climatic changes, and the study of prehistoric population dynamics, estimated through changing frequencies of calibrated radiocarbon dates, therefore affords insights into how effectively such buffers operated and when they failed. In reviewing a number of case studies (Mesolithic Ireland, the origin of the Bromme culture, and the earliest late glacial human recolonization of southern Scandinavia), I suggest that a greater awareness of demographic processes, and in particular of demographic declines, provides many fresh insights into what structured the archaeological record. I argue that we cannot sideline climatic and environmental factors or extreme geophysical events in our reconstructions of prehistoric culture change. The implications of accepting demographic variability as a departure point for evaluating the archaeological record are discussed.

  20. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene surficial deposits and landforms of Yosemite Valley, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haddon, E. K.; Stock, G. M.; Booth, D. B.

    2016-12-01

    Field studies on the surficial geology and geomorphology of Yosemite Valley since the 1870's formed an early basis for our understanding of Quaternary landscape evolution in the central Sierra Nevada. These landmark studies described the erosional origin of Yosemite's iconic scenery, but left details of the latest Pleistocene and Holocene sedimentary record for later investigation. We combined mapping of deposits and landforms with geochronology to reconstruct the geomorphic evolution of Yosemite Valley since the 15 ka retreat of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) valley glacier. We document a sustained period of relative landscape stability, characterized by valley-bottom aggradation of glacial till, fluvial sediments, and lacustrine silts, as well as valley-margin accumulation of talus and fan alluvium. Recessional moraines, episodically emplaced rock avalanches, and alluvial fans impeded surface flow and controlled the local base level. This predominantly aggradational regime then shifted to incision in the earliest Holocene, likely due to a diminishing supply of glacial sediment, and created a flight of fluvial terraces inset by up to 9 m. The volume of fringing talus and fan alluvium in comparison with fluvial terrace sequences emphasizes the importance of valley-wall erosion as a sediment source. Cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages from rock avalanche boulders and 14C charcoal ages from deltaic sequences and inset fluvial gravels suggest variable rates of Holocene river incision. Although some incision events likely record local base level changes at the El Capitan LGM recessional moraine, the presence of perched, well-developed outwash terraces downstream indicates a more regional climatic forcing. These findings, including the depositional record of land-use disturbances over the past two centuries, help illuminate the geologic evolution of this celebrated landscape and inform ongoing river-restoration work.

  1. The Pleistocene evolution of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet in the Prydz bay region: Stable isotopic evidence from ODP Site 1167

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theissen, K.M.; Dunbar, R.B.; Cooper, A. K.; Mucciarone, D.A.; Hoffmann, D.

    2003-01-01

    Ocean Drilling Program Leg 188, Prydz Bay, East Antarctica is part of a larger initiative to explore the Cenozoic history of the Antarctic Ice Sheet through direct drilling and sampling of the continental margins. In this paper, we present stable isotopic results from Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 1167 located on the Prydz Channel Trough Mouth Fan (TMF), the first Antarctic TMF to be drilled. The foraminifer-based ??18O record is interpreted along with sedimentary and downhole logging evidence to reconstruct the Quaternary glacial history of Prydz Bay and the adjacent Lambert Glacier Amery Ice Shelf System (LGAISS). We report an electron spin resonance age date of 36. 9 ?? 3.3 ka at 0.45 m below sea floor and correlate suspected glacial-interglacial cycles with the global isotopic stratigraphy to improve the chronology for Site 1167. The ??18O record based on planktonic (Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (s.)) and limited benthic results (Globocassidulina crassa), indicates a trend of ice sheet expansion that was interrupted by a period of reduced ice volume and possibly warmer conditions during the early-mid-Pleistocene (0.9-1.38 Ma). An increase in ?? 18O values after ??? 900 ka appears to coincide with the mid-Pleistocene climate transition and the expansion of the northern hemisphere ice sheet. The ??18O record in the upper 50 m of the stratigraphic section indicates as few as three glacial-interglacial cycles, tentatively assigned as marine isotopic stages (MIS) 16-21, are preserved since the Brunhes/Matuyama paleomagnetic reversal (780 ka). This suggests that there is a large unconformity near the top of the section and/or that there may have been few extreme advances of the ice sheet since the mid-Pleistocene climate transition resulting in lowered sedimentation rates on the Prydz Channel TMF. The stable isotopic record from Site 1167 is one of the few available from the area south of the Antarctic Polar Front that has been linked with the global isotopic

  2. Paleoenvironmental evolution and geomorphic dynamics recorded in the Homo-bearing Pleistocene stratigraphic succession of Aalat (Eritrea, East Africa): A pedological perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scarciglia, Fabio; Mercatante, Giuseppe; Donato, Paola; Ghinassi, Massimiliano; Carnevale, Giorgio; Delfino, Massimo; Oms, Oriol; Papini, Mauro; Pavia, Marco; Sani, Federico; Rook, Lorenzo

    2017-04-01

    The Aalat stratigraphic succession represents a 300 m-thick continental archive in the northern sector of the African Rift Valley (Dandiero basin, Eritrea). Based on high-resolution magnetostratigraphy, along with tephrostratigrapic, paleontological and paleoanthropological data and correlations, the chronological constraints for the emplacement of this succession can be fixed at two stages characterized by normal polarity of the Earth's magnetic field, i.e. the base of the Jaramillo event and the lower part of the Brunhes chron, marking the Early to Middle Pleistocene transition. Remains of Homo erectus/ergaster and abundant fossil vertebrates were identified. Despite nowadays the study area has a typical arid, hot desert climate, the sedimentary succession records repeated shifts from fluvial to lacustrine facies, in line with dominant mammalian taxa characterized by strong water dependence and ichthyofauna typical of shallow-water fluvio-lacustrine paleoenvironments. The dominance of these water-controlled depositional environments over more than 250 ka suggests a major tectonic control, even though a clear overprinting of Pleistocene climate changes can be detected. The main morphological soil features, along with physico-chemical, mineralogical, geochemical and micromorphological data of selected soil profiles and horizons depict an overall poor to moderate degree of soil development, coherently with high rates of sedimentation of about 1 mm/year and local erosive phases. Nonetheless, the presence of calcic and especially petrocalcic horizons and one petrogypsic horizon at different stratigraphic heights clearly indicates cyclical phases of geomorphic stability, which allowed important leaching and accumulation of carbonate (or gypsum). Their complex, polygenetic fabric, often showing brecciation and re-dissolution features, points to a polyphased genesis, caused by changes in soil moisture conditions over time. This finding, together with the alternation of

  3. Climate, catchment runoff and limnological drivers of carbon and oxygen isotope composition of diatom frustules from the central andean altiplano during the Lateglacial and Early Holocene

    OpenAIRE

    Hernández, Armand; Bao, Roberto; Giralt, Santiago; Sáez, Alberto; Leng, Melanie J.; Barker, Philips A.; Kendrick, C.P.; Sloane, Hilary J.

    2013-01-01

    Diatom-based carbon and oxygen isotope analyses (δ13Cdiatom and δ18Odiatom) were performed on diatomrich laminated sediments of Lake Chungará (Andean Altiplano, northern Chile) deposited during the Lateglacial and Early Holocene (12,400e8300 cal years BP) to reconstruct climate change and environmental response across this major climate transition. The δ13Cdiatom data show both centennial-tomillennial scale changes related to fluctuations in lake productivity and CO2 concentration in the lake...

  4. Behavioural Development of Early Adolescents by Dint of Positive School Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayalekshmi, N. B.; Dharma Raja, B. William

    2011-01-01

    Early adolescence is the period where the transition from child to adult takes place gradually. A major physical and cognitive change during this period is accompanied by social and emotional development. The growth spurt in this period makes them stronger and plays an important role in developing self identities. The journey through this crucial…

  5. Spatial-temporal analysis on climate variation in early Qing dynasty (17th -18th century) using China's chronological records

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Kuan-Hui Elaine; Wang, Pao-Kuan; Fan, I.-Chun; Liao, Yi-Chun; Liao, Hsiung-Ming; Pai, Pi-Ling

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change in the form of extreme, variation, and short- or mid-term fluctuation is now widely conceived to challenge the survival of the human beings and the societies. Meanwhile, improving present and future climate modeling needs a comprehensive understanding of the past climate patterns. Although historical climate modeling has gained substantive progress in recent years based on the new findings from dynamical meteorology, phenology, or paleobiology, less known are the mid- to short-term variations or lower-frequency variabilities at different temporal scale and their regional expressions. Enabling accurate historical climate modeling would heavily rely on the robustness of the dataset that could carry specific time, location, and meteorological information in the continuous temporal and spatial chains. This study thus presents an important methodological innovation to reconstruct historical climate modeling at multiple temporal and spatial scales through building a historical climate dataset, based on the Chinese chronicles compiled in a Zhang (2004) edited Compendium of Chinese Meteorological Records of the Last 3,000 Years since Zhou Dynasty (1100BC). The dataset reserves the most delicate meteorological data with accurate time, location, meteorological event, duration, and other phonological, social and economic impact information, and is carefully digitalized, coded, and geo-referenced on the Geographical Information System based maps according to Tan's (1982) historical atlas in China. The research project, beginning in January 2015, is a collaborative work among scholars across meteorology, geography, and historical linguistics disciplines. The present research findings derived from the early 100+ years of the Qing dynasty include the following. First, the analysis is based on the sampling size, denoted as cities/counties, n=1398 across the Mainland China in the observation period. Second, the frequencies of precipitation, cold

  6. Climate change mitigation strategies in fast-growing countries: The benefits of early action

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bosetti, Valentina; Carraro, Carlo; Tavoni, Massimo

    2009-01-01

    This paper builds on the assumption that OECD countries are (or will soon be) taking actions to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. These actions, however, will not be sufficient to control global warming, unless developing countries also get involved in the cooperative effort to reduce GHG emissions. The paper investigates the best short-term strategies that emerging economies can adopt in reacting to OECD countries' mitigation effort, given the common long-term goal to prevent excessive warming without hampering economic growth. Results indicate that developing countries would incur substantial economic losses by following a myopic strategy that disregards climate in the short-run, and that their optimal investment behaviour is to anticipate the implementation of a climate policy by roughly 10 years. Investing in innovation ahead of time is also found to be advantageous. The degree of policy anticipation is shown to be important in determining the financial transfers of an international carbon market meant to provide incentives for the participation of developing countries. This is especially relevant for China, whose recent and foreseeable trends of investments in innovation are consistent with the adoption of domestic emission reduction obligations in 2030.

  7. Upper Pleistocene Human Dispersals out of Africa: A Review of the Current State of the Debate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyin, Amanuel

    2011-01-01

    Although there is a general consensus on African origin of early modern humans, there is disagreement about how and when they dispersed to Eurasia. This paper reviews genetic and Middle Stone Age/Middle Paleolithic archaeological literature from northeast Africa, Arabia, and the Levant to assess the timing and geographic backgrounds of Upper Pleistocene human colonization of Eurasia. At the center of the discussion lies the question of whether eastern Africa alone was the source of Upper Pleistocene human dispersals into Eurasia or were there other loci of human expansions outside of Africa? The reviewed literature hints at two modes of early modern human colonization of Eurasia in the Upper Pleistocene: (i) from multiple Homo sapiens source populations that had entered Arabia, South Asia, and the Levant prior to and soon after the onset of the Last Interglacial (MIS-5), (ii) from a rapid dispersal out of East Africa via the Southern Route (across the Red Sea basin), dating to ~74–60 kya. PMID:21716744

  8. The Eocene climate of China, the early elevation of the Tibetan Plateau and the onset of the Asian Monsoon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qing; Spicer, Robert A; Yang, Jian; Wang, Yu-Fei; Li, Cheng-Sen

    2013-12-01

    Eocene palynological samples from 37 widely distributed sites across China were analysed using co-existence approach to determine trends in space and time for seven palaeoclimate variables: Mean annual temperature, mean annual precipitation, mean temperature of the warmest month, mean temperature of the coldest month, mean annual range of temperature, mean maximum monthly precipitation and mean minimum monthly precipitation. Present day distributions and observed climates within China of the nearest living relatives of the fossil forms were used to find the range of a given variable in which a maximum number of taxa can coexist. Isotherm and isohyet maps for the early, middle and late Eocene were constructed. These illustrate regional changing patterns in thermal and precipitational gradients that may be interpreted as the beginnings of the modern Asian Monsoon system, and suggest that the uplift of parts of the Tibetan Plateau appear to have taken place by the middle to late Eocene. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Pleistocene North African genomes link Near Eastern and sub-Saharan African human populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Loosdrecht, Marieke; Bouzouggar, Abdeljalil; Humphrey, Louise; Posth, Cosimo; Barton, Nick; Aximu-Petri, Ayinuer; Nickel, Birgit; Nagel, Sarah; Talbi, El Hassan; El Hajraoui, Mohammed Abdeljalil; Amzazi, Saaïd; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Pääbo, Svante; Schiffels, Stephan; Meyer, Matthias; Haak, Wolfgang; Jeong, Choongwon; Krause, Johannes

    2018-05-04

    North Africa is a key region for understanding human history, but the genetic history of its people is largely unknown. We present genomic data from seven 15,000-year-old modern humans, attributed to the Iberomaurusian culture, from Morocco. We find a genetic affinity with early Holocene Near Easterners, best represented by Levantine Natufians, suggesting a pre-agricultural connection between Africa and the Near East. We do not find evidence for gene flow from Paleolithic Europeans to Late Pleistocene North Africans. The Taforalt individuals derive one-third of their ancestry from sub-Saharan Africans, best approximated by a mixture of genetic components preserved in present-day West and East Africans. Thus, we provide direct evidence for genetic interactions between modern humans across Africa and Eurasia in the Pleistocene. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  10. Spatio-temporal modelling of climate-sensitive disease risk: Towards an early warning system for dengue in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Rachel; Bailey, Trevor C.; Stephenson, David B.; Graham, Richard J.; Coelho, Caio A. S.; Sá Carvalho, Marilia; Barcellos, Christovam

    2011-03-01

    This paper considers the potential for using seasonal climate forecasts in developing an early warning system for dengue fever epidemics in Brazil. In the first instance, a generalised linear model (GLM) is used to select climate and other covariates which are both readily available and prove significant in prediction of confirmed monthly dengue cases based on data collected across the whole of Brazil for the period January 2001 to December 2008 at the microregion level (typically consisting of one large city and several smaller municipalities). The covariates explored include temperature and precipitation data on a 2.5°×2.5° longitude-latitude grid with time lags relevant to dengue transmission, an El Niño Southern Oscillation index and other relevant socio-economic and environmental variables. A negative binomial model formulation is adopted in this model selection to allow for extra-Poisson variation (overdispersion) in the observed dengue counts caused by unknown/unobserved confounding factors and possible correlations in these effects in both time and space. Subsequently, the selected global model is refined in the context of the South East region of Brazil, where dengue predominates, by reverting to a Poisson framework and explicitly modelling the overdispersion through a combination of unstructured and spatio-temporal structured random effects. The resulting spatio-temporal hierarchical model (or GLMM—generalised linear mixed model) is implemented via a Bayesian framework using Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC). Dengue predictions are found to be enhanced both spatially and temporally when using the GLMM and the Bayesian framework allows posterior predictive distributions for dengue cases to be derived, which can be useful for developing a dengue alert system. Using this model, we conclude that seasonal climate forecasts could have potential value in helping to predict dengue incidence months in advance of an epidemic in South East Brazil.

  11. Response of carbon isotopic compositions of Early-Middle Permian coals in North China to palaeo-climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Dianshi; Liu, Guijian; Sun, Xiaohui; Sun, Ruoyu

    2018-01-01

    To investigate the magnitude to which the carbon isotopic ratio (δ13C) varies in coals in response to their contemporary terrestrial environment, the Early-Middle Permian Huainan coals (including coals from the Shanxi Formation, Lower Shihezi Formation and Upper Shihezi Formation) in North China were systematically sampled. A 2.5‰ variation range of δ13C values (-25.15‰ to -22.65‰) was observed in Huainan coals, with an average value of -24.06‰. As coal diagenesis exerts little influence on carbon isotope fractionation, δ13C values in coals were mainly imparted by those of coal-forming flora assemblages which were linked to the contemporary climate. The δ13C values in coals from the Shanxi and Lower Shihezi Formations are variable, reflecting unstable climatic oscillations. Heavy carbon isotope is enriched in coals of the Capitanian Upper Shihezi Formation, implying a shift to high positive δ13C values of coeval atmospheric CO2. Notably, our study provides evidence of the Kamura event in the terrestrial environment for the first time.

  12. "Pleistocene Park" - A Glacial Ecosystem in a Warming World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimov, N.; Zimov, S. A.

    2011-12-01

    dry and runoff low. This would further increase nutrient availability in the soil. Water limitation would force roots grow deeper to cold soil horizons where these roots (carbon) will be sequestered for a long period of time. After high productivity and high diversity of animals in the ecosystem is reached, this ecosystem will once again be able to compete and to expand. To test this hypothesis, we have started the experiment named "Pleistocene Park". For over 15 years we have brought different herbivore species to the fenced area in the Kolyma river lowland, keep them at high density and see the ecosystem transformation. Now Pleistocene Park is size of 20 km2 and home for 7 big herbivores species. It is a small version of how the Mammoth Steppe ecosystem looked in the past and may look in the future. Pleistocene Park is a place where scientists can conduct in situ research and see how restoration of the ice age ecosystem may help mitigate future climatic changes. Arctic is a weakly populated region with no possibilities for agriculture. Modern civilization treats bigger part of the Arctic as wastelands. So why don't turn this "wasteland" into something that can strongly benefit our civilization in the future?

  13. Pleistocene magnetochronology of the fauna and Paleolithic sites in the Nihewan Basin: Significance for environmental and hominin evolution in North China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ao, H.; An, Z.; Dekkers, M.J.; Li, Y.; Xiao, G.; Zhao, H.; Qiang, X.

    2013-01-01

    The fluvio-lacustrine sequences in the Nihewan Basin of North China (known as the Nihewan Formation) are rich sources of Early Pleistocene Paleolithic sites and mammalian fossils (known as the Nihewan Fauna sensu lato), which offer an excellent opportunity to investigate the evolution of early

  14. Changes in time series of some climate elements in Estonia in early spring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Russak, Viivi

    1999-01-01

    Systematic changes in some climate elements have become evident in Estonia during the latest decades; the greatest changes have been observed in March. Two possible causes may have led to the observed warming: changes in general atmospheric circulation and in radiation budget. Due to small solar evaluation and shortness of day the role of solar radiation in air temperature formation is not considerable in March. The absence of any significant trend in the time series of net long wave radiation in March seems to be caused by simultaneous and opposite influence of changes in downward and upward infrared radiation fluxes on temperature conditions near ground. In other seasons a significant increase in greenhouse effect has been established. Therefore, the changes in general atmospheric circulation should be considered the main reason of warming, while the role of solar radiation and greenhouse effect is not considerable in March

  15. Integrated numerical modeling of a landslide early warning system in a context of adaptation to future climatic pressures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khabarov, Nikolay; Huggel, Christian; Obersteiner, Michael; Ramírez, Juan Manuel

    2010-05-01

    Mountain regions are typically characterized by rugged terrain which is susceptible to different types of landslides during high-intensity precipitation. Landslides account for billions of dollars of damage and many casualties, and are expected to increase in frequency in the future due to a projected increase of precipitation intensity. Early warning systems (EWS) are thought to be a primary tool for related disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation to extreme climatic events and hydro-meteorological hazards, including landslides. An EWS for hazards such as landslides consist of different components, including environmental monitoring instruments (e.g. rainfall or flow sensors), physical or empirical process models to support decision-making (warnings, evacuation), data and voice communication, organization and logistics-related procedures, and population response. Considering this broad range, EWS are highly complex systems, and it is therefore difficult to understand the effect of the different components and changing conditions on the overall performance, ultimately being expressed as human lives saved or structural damage reduced. In this contribution we present a further development of our approach to assess a landslide EWS in an integral way, both at the system and component level. We utilize a numerical model using 6 hour rainfall data as basic input. A threshold function based on a rainfall-intensity/duration relation was applied as a decision criterion for evacuation. Damage to infrastructure and human lives was defined as a linear function of landslide magnitude, with the magnitude modelled using a power function of landslide frequency. Correct evacuation was assessed with a ‘true' reference rainfall dataset versus a dataset of artificially reduced quality imitating the observation system component. Performance of the EWS using these rainfall datasets was expressed in monetary terms (i.e. damage related to false and correct evacuation). We

  16. Early Pleistocene occurrence of Acheulian technology in North China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, Xingwen; Ao, Hong; Dekkers, Mark J.; Roberts, Andrew P.; Zhang, Peng; Lin, Shan; Huang, Weiwen; Hou, Yamei; Zhang, Weihua; An, Zhisheng

    2017-01-01

    Acheulian tools with their associated level of cognizance heralded a major threshold in the evolution of hominin technology, culture and behavior. Thus, unraveling occurrence ages of Acheulian technology across different regions worldwide constitutes a key aspect of understanding the archeology of

  17. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nohemi Sala

    Full Text Available Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force trauma. The type of injuries, their location, the strong similarity of the fractures in shape and size, and the different orientations and implied trajectories of the two fractures suggest they were produced with the same object in face-to-face interpersonal conflict. Given that either of the two traumatic events was likely lethal, the presence of multiple blows implies an intention to kill. This finding shows that the lethal interpersonal violence is an ancient human behavior and has important implications for the accumulation of bodies at the site, supporting an anthropic origin.

  18. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Pantoja-Pérez, Ana; Pablos, Adrián; Martínez, Ignacio; Quam, Rolf M; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-01-01

    Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force trauma. The type of injuries, their location, the strong similarity of the fractures in shape and size, and the different orientations and implied trajectories of the two fractures suggest they were produced with the same object in face-to-face interpersonal conflict. Given that either of the two traumatic events was likely lethal, the presence of multiple blows implies an intention to kill. This finding shows that the lethal interpersonal violence is an ancient human behavior and has important implications for the accumulation of bodies at the site, supporting an anthropic origin.

  19. An Outrageous Geological Hypothesis for the Early Mars Hydro-climatic Conundrum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, V. R.

    2016-12-01

    Nearly a century ago a Science paper by W. M. Davis described the role for an "outrageous geological hypothesis" (OGH) as encouraging, "…a contemplation deliberate enough to seek out what conditions would make the outrage seem permissible and reasonable." Davis even advocated in 1926 that Earth scientists seriously consider "the Wegener outrage of wandering continents"- the OGH that ultimately led to the most important unifying concept for understanding the nature of Earthlike planets. Does this concept of a mobile lithosphere, manifesting itself on Earth as plate tectonics, have relevance for understanding the nature of early Mars? Conceptual arguments have been presented claiming that Mars could never have had an early phase of lithospheric dynamics similar to that associated with Earth's plate tectonics. Nevertheless, a total rejection of this OGH precludes any possibility of considering (1) the conditions that might make such dynamics possible, and (2) connections among the many phenomena that can be collectively accounted for by the OGH. While all scientific arguments are intrinsically fallible, nature presents us with absolute realities. For Mars the latter consist of the numerous anomalies related to planetary evolution that either can be explained piecemeal by ad hoc hypotheses, or, alternatively, might be viewed as part of something to be explained by a unifying, working hypothesis that may seem outrageous in the light of current theory. Briefly stated, the Early Mars OGH envisions a pre-Late Heavy Bombardment (> 4 Ga) phase of lithospheric subduction that helped generate the very powerful core dynamo while also emplacing near the core-mantle boundary a reservoir of volatiles that subsequently influenced the later Mars history of punctuated evolution, involving episodic volcanism and transient states of a denser atmosphere with associated, active hydrological cycling, including the temporary surficial expressions of oceans, lakes, glaciers, and rivers.

  20. Geochemical characterization of the middle and late Pleistocene alluvial fan-dominated infill of the northern part of the Weihe Basin, Central China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rits, Daniël S.; Beets, Christiaan J.; Prins, Maarten A.; van Balen, Ronald T.; Troelstra, Simon R.; Luo, Chao; Wang, B.; Li, Xiaoqiang; Zhou, Jie; Zheng, Hongbo

    2017-01-01

    Major reorganizations in climate and tectonic regime occurred in East Asia during the Pleistocene, resulting in large-scale environmental changes. In this paper a detailed geochemical and mineralogical record of these changes is presented from a distal alluvial fan sedimentary sequence in the

  1. Genetic Pattern and Demographic History of Salminus brasiliensis: Population Expansion in the Pantanal Region during the Pleistocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lívia A. de Carvalho Mondin

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Pleistocene climate changes were major historical events that impacted South American biodiversity. Although the effects of such changes are well-documented for several biomes, it is poorly known how these climate shifts affected the biodiversity of the Pantanal floodplain. Fish are one of the most diverse groups in the Pantanal floodplains and can be taken as a suitable biological model for reconstructing paleoenvironmental scenarios. To identify the effects of Pleistocene climate changes on Pantanal’s ichthyofauna, we used genetic data from multiple populations of a top-predator long-distance migratory fish, Salminus brasiliensis. We specifically investigated whether Pleistocene climate changes affected the demography of this species. If this was the case, we expected to find changes in population size over time. Thus, we assessed the genetic diversity of S. brasiliensis to trace the demographic history of nine populations from the Upper Paraguay basin, which includes the Pantanal floodplain, that form a single genetic group, employing approximate Bayesian computation (ABC to test five scenarios: constant population, old expansion, old decline, old bottleneck following by recent expansion, and old expansion following by recent decline. Based on two mitochondrial DNA markers, our inferences from ABC analysis, the results of Bayesian skyline plot, the implications of star-like networks, and the patterns of genetic diversity (high haplotype diversity and low-to-moderate nucleotide diversity indicated a sudden population expansion. ABC allowed us to make strong quantitative inferences about the demographic history of S. brasiliensis. We estimated a small ancestral population size that underwent a drastic fivefold expansion, probably associated with the colonization of newly formed habitats. The estimated time of this expansion was consistent with a humid and warm phase as inferred by speleothem growth phases and travertine records during

  2. A Drought Early Warning System Using System Dynamics Model and Seasonal Climate Forecasts: a case study in Hsinchu, Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tien, Yu-Chuan; Tung, Ching-Ping; Liu, Tzu-Ming; Lin, Chia-Yu

    2016-04-01

    In the last twenty years, Hsinchu, a county of Taiwan, has experienced a tremendous growth in water demand due to the development of Hsinchu Science Park. In order to fulfill the water demand, the government has built the new reservoir, Baoshan second reservoir. However, short term droughts still happen. One of the reasons is that the water level of the reservoirs in Hsinchu cannot be reasonably forecasted, which sometimes even underestimates the severity of drought. The purpose of this study is to build a drought early warning system that projects the water levels of two important reservoirs, Baoshan and Baoshan second reservoir, and also the spatial distribution of water shortagewith the lead time of three months. Furthermore, this study also attempts to assist the government to improve water resources management. Hence, a system dynamics model of Touchien River, which is the most important river for public water supply in Hsinchu, is developed. The model consists of several important subsystems, including two reservoirs, water treatment plants and agricultural irrigation districts. Using the upstream flow generated by seasonal weather forecasting data, the model is able to simulate the storage of the two reservoirs and the distribution of water shortage. Moreover, the model can also provide the information under certain emergency scenarios, such as the accident or failure of a water treatment plant. At last, the performance of the proposed method and the original water resource management method that the government used were also compared. Keyword: Water Resource Management, Hydrology, Seasonal Climate Forecast, Reservoir, Early Warning, Drought

  3. Long-term paradoxical aftermath of the Early Permian climatic warming in the Northern Hemisphere: biotic and abiotic aspects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kossovaya, Olga

    2014-05-01

    Far distant influence of the climatic changes is rather variable and sometimes paradoxical. One of the examples is the flourish of the Photozoan association in the Northern Hemisphere during time of Southern Hemisphere glaciation (P2) and it following collapse in the interglacial phase. Modelling of the possible extrinsic factors using isotope data from the Urals has demonstrated the complex succession of abiotic changes including circulation changes and penetration of cold water from Northern Panthalassa. The invasion of cold water into the Uralian Basin led to disarray of the coastal circulation and rising of cold water via upwelling. It was resulted by change of biota and wide distribution of the heterozoan biota. The replacement took place both in carbonate ramp and reef facies. The depletion of δ18O during the early Artinskian was demonstrated by analyses of the biogenic carbonates from Belaya Gora (Most) section. This coincides with the previously known trend for d18O shown for low latitudes from the Sakmarian to early Artinskian with a minimum during the middle Artinskian and is in accordance with recent data from the South Urals. The heterochrony of the impact in the far-distant and discrete photozoan assemblages depends on their bathymetric and paleo-latitudinal position.

  4. Did Photosymbiont Bleaching Lead to the Demise of Planktic Foraminifer Morozovella at the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luciani, Valeria; D'Onofrio, Roberta; Dickens, Gerald R; Wade, Bridget S

    2017-11-01

    The symbiont-bearing mixed-layer planktic foraminiferal genera Morozovella and Acarinina were among the most important calcifiers of early Paleogene tropical-subtropical oceans. A marked and permanent switch in the abundance of these genera is known to have occurred at low-latitude sites at the beginning of the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO), such that the relative abundance of Morozovella permanently and significantly decreased along with a progressive reduction in the number of species; concomitantly, the genus Acarinina almost doubled its abundance and diversified. Here we examine planktic foraminiferal assemblages and stable isotope compositions of their tests at Ocean Drilling Program Site 1051 (northwest Atlantic) to detail the timing of this biotic event, to document its details at the species level, and to test a potential cause: the loss of photosymbionts (bleaching). We also provide stable isotope measurements of bulk carbonate to refine the stratigraphy at Site 1051 and to determine when changes in Morozovella species composition and their test size occurred. We demonstrate that the switch in Morozovella and Acarinina abundance occurred rapidly and in coincidence with a negative carbon isotope excursion known as the J event (~53 Ma), which marks the start of the EECO. We provide evidence of photosymbiont loss after the J event from a size-restricted δ 13 C analysis. However, such inferred bleaching was transitory and also occurred in the acarininids. The geologically rapid switch in planktic foraminiferal genera during the early Eocene was a major evolutionary change within marine biota, but loss of photosymbionts was not the primary causal mechanism.

  5. A lacustrine record of the early stage of the Miocene Climatic Optimum in Central Europe from the Most Basin, Ohre (Eger) Graben, Czech Republic

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Matys Grygar, Tomáš; Mach, K.; Schnabl, Petr; Pruner, Petr; Laurin, Jiří; Martinez, M.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 151, č. 6 (2014), s. 1013-1033 ISSN 0016-7568 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP210/11/1357 Institutional support: RVO:61388980 ; RVO:67985530 ; RVO:67985831 Keywords : cyclostratigraphy * lake sediments * climate dynamics * Milankovitch cycles * early Miocene Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 2.482, year: 2014

  6. How Far into Europe Did Pikas (Lagomorpha: Ochotonidae) Go during the Pleistocene? New Evidence from Central Iberia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laplana, César; Sevilla, Paloma; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Arriaza, Mari Carmen; Baquedano, Enrique; Pérez-González, Alfredo

    2015-01-01

    This paper reports the first find of pika remains in the Iberian Peninsula, at a site in central Spain. A fragmented mandible of Ochotona cf. pusilla was unearthed from Layer 3 (deposited some 63.4±5.5 ka ago as determined by thermoluminescence) of the Buena Pinta Cave. This record establishes new limits for the genus geographic distribution during the Pleistocene, shifting the previous edge of its known range southwest by some 500 km. It also supports the idea that, even though Europe’s alpine mountain ranges represented a barrier that prevented the dispersal into the south to this and other taxa of small mammals from central and eastern Europe, they were crossed or circumvented at the coldest time intervals of the end of the Middle Pleistocene and of the Late Pleistocene. During those periods both the reduction of the forest cover and the emersion of large areas of the continental shelf due to the drop of the sea level probably provided these species a way to surpass this barrier. The pika mandible was found accompanying the remains of other small mammals adapted to cold climates, indicating the presence of steppe environments in central Iberia during the Late Pleistocene. PMID:26535576

  7. EARLY DETECTION OF CLIMATE CHANGE IMPACT ON AGRICULTURE AN ISRAELI CASE STUDY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N. Kliot [Department of Geography and Environment Studies University of Haifa, Haifa (Israel)

    2008-09-30

    According to moderate I.P.C.C. scenarios, within the coming 100 years the temperature in the Eastern Mediterranean is expected to rise by an average of 3.3 C in the summer and 2.8 C in the winter. It is expected that heat waves will increase in intensity and frequency. It is also expected that the annual rainfall will be reduced, there will be fewer rainy days and rise in the frequency of extreme rainfall event. Also, frequency of extreme whether events is expected to rise. The difficulties which face Israeli farming which is technologically a very advanced one, are: first, water stress - shortage in water resources and deterioration in their quality; second, impacts on crops and various livestock and poultry branches. Generally, agricultural long term planning will have to plan for replacing many fruit trees which need cool winter (apples, pears, peaches, cherries - for example) by crops which will be better adapted to heat and dry weather. It is expected that the higher temperatures will sustain more diseases of plants, crops and orchards. Field crops which depend on winter precipitation will be particularly effected by climatic changes. Some, such cotton will require supplemental irrigation. All field crops will be subjected to increased soil erosion. Studies which were conducted in Israel estimated that the future damages to agriculture as a result of water shortages as ranging between $101-$208 million. The income of farmers may drop by 20%. One of the coping methods is a system of insurance in most of the agricultural branches and a special fund to compensate wheat farmers for frequent droughts. The various difficulties and adaptation mechanisms (such as smart agriculture, or complete green house farming systems) will be presented.

  8. On the Paleobiogeography of Pleistocenic Italian Mammals / Osservazioni sulla paleobiogeografia dei mammiferi del Pleistocene italiano

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucia Caloi

    1986-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In this paper the main Italian Pleistocene mammalofaunas are examined and a chronological sequence of the main deposits is proposed. Centers of spreading, times of first appearence in Italy and ranges through the peninsula of the more representative species are indicated, as far as possible. The insular faunas and the different degrees of endemism they show, are particularly discussed. Riassunto Vengono esaminate sinteticamente le principali faune a mammiferi del Pleistocene d'Italia e viene proposta una successione cronologica per i principali giacimenti. Per le specie più rappresentative vengono indicati, per quanto possibile, le aree di provenienza, il momento della comparsa e la loro diffusione nella penisola. Particolare attenzione viene posta alle forme insulari ed al loro carattere endemico.

  9. The Middle Pleistocene vertebrate fauna from Khok Sung (Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand): biochronological and paleobiogeographical implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suraprasit, Kantapon; Jaeger, Jean-Jacques; Chaimanee, Yaowalak; Chavasseau, Olivier; Yamee, Chotima; Tian, Pannipa; Panha, Somsak

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The fluviatile terrace deposits of Khok Sung, Nakhon Ratchasima province, have yielded more than one thousand fossils, making this the richest Pleistocene vertebrate fauna of Thailand. The excellent preservation of the specimens allows precise characterization of the faunal composition. The mammalian fauna consists of fifteen species in thirteen genera, including a primate, a canid, a hyaenid, proboscideans, rhinoceroses, a suid, cervids, and bovids. Most species correspond to living taxa but globally (Stegodon cf. orientalis) and locally (Crocuta crocuta ultima, Rhinoceros unicornis, Sus barbatus, and Axis axis) extinct taxa were also present. The identification of Axis axis in Khok Sung, a chital currently restricted to the Indian Subcontinent, represents the first record of the species in Southeast Asia. Three reptilian taxa: Crocodylus cf. siamensis, Python sp., and Varanus sp., are also identified. Faunal correlations with other Southeast Asian sites suggest a late Middle to early Late Pleistocene age for the Khok Sung assemblage. However, the Khok Sung mammalian fauna is most similar to that of Thum Wiman Nakin, dated to older than 169 ka. The Khok Sung large mammal assemblage mostly comprises mainland Southeast Asian taxa that migrated to Java during the latest Middle Pleistocene, supporting the hypothesis that Thailand was a biogeographic pathway for the Sino-Malayan migration event from South China to Java. PMID:27667928

  10. Coral zonation and diagenesis of an emergent Pleistocene patch reef, Belize, Central America

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lighty, R.G.; Russell, K.L.

    1985-01-01

    Transect mapping and petrologic studies reveal a new depositional model and limited diagenesis of a well-exposed Pleistocene reef outcrop at Ambergris Cay, northern Belize. This emergent shelf-edge reef forms a rocky wave-washed headland at the northern terminus of the present-day 250 km long flourishing Belize Barrier Reef. Previously, the Belize reef outcrop was thought to extend southward in the subsurface beneath the modern barrier reef as a Pleistocene equivalent. The authors study indicate that this outcrop is a large, coral patch reef and not part of a barrier reef trend. Sixteen transects 12.5 m apart described in continuous cm increments from fore reef to back reef identified: extensive deposits of broken Acropora cervicornis; small thickets of A. palmata with small, oriented branches; and muddy skeletal sediments with few corals or reef rubble. Thin section and SEM studies show three phases of early submarine cementation: syntaxial and rosette aragonite; Mg-calcite rim cement and peloids; and colloidal Mg-calcite geopetal fill. Subaerial exposure in semi-arid northern Belize caused only minor skeletal dissolution, some precipitation of vadose whisker calcite, and no meteoric phreatic diagenesis. Facies geometry, coral assemblages, lack of rubble deposits, coralline algal encrustations and Millepora framework, and recognition of common but discrete submarine cements, all indicate that this Pleistocene reef was an isolated, coral-fringed sediment buildup similar to may large patch reefs existing today in moderate-energy shelf environments behind the modern barrier reef in central and southern Belize.

  11. Observed trends of soil fauna in the Antarctic Dry Valleys: early signs of shifts predicted under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andriuzzi, W S; Adams, B J; Barrett, J E; Virginia, R A; Wall, D H

    2018-02-01

    Long-term observations of ecological communities are necessary for generating and testing predictions of ecosystem responses to climate change. We investigated temporal trends and spatial patterns of soil fauna along similar environmental gradients in three sites of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, spanning two distinct climatic phases: a decadal cooling trend from the early 1990s through the austral summer of February 2001, followed by a shift to the current trend of warming summers and more frequent discrete warming events. After February 2001, we observed a decline in the dominant species (the nematode Scottnema lindsayae) and increased abundance and expanded distribution of less common taxa (rotifers, tardigrades, and other nematode species). Such diverging responses have resulted in slightly greater evenness and spatial homogeneity of taxa. However, total abundance of soil fauna appears to be declining, as positive trends of the less common species so far have not compensated for the declining numbers of the dominant species. Interannual variation in the proportion of juveniles in the dominant species was consistent across sites, whereas trends in abundance varied more. Structural equation modeling supports the hypothesis that the observed biological trends arose from dissimilar responses by dominant and less common species to pulses of water availability resulting from enhanced ice melt. No direct effects of mean summer temperature were found, but there is evidence of indirect effects via its weak but significant positive relationship with soil moisture. Our findings show that combining an understanding of species responses to environmental change with long-term observations in the field can provide a context for validating and refining predictions of ecological trends in the abundance and diversity of soil fauna. © 2018 by the Ecological Society of America.

  12. Glendonites as a paleoenvironmental tool: Implications for early Cretaceous high latitudinal climates in Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Lurio, Jennifer L.; Frakes, L. A.

    1999-04-01

    Glendonites, calcite pseudomorphs after the metastable mineral ikaite (CaCO 3 · 6H 2O), occur in the Late Aptian interval of the Bulldog Shale in the Eromanga Basin, Australia and in other Early Cretaceous basins at high paleolatitudes. Ikaite precipitation in the marine environment requires near-freezing temperatures (not higher than 4°C), high alkalinity, increased levels of orthophosphate, and high P CO2. The rapid and complete transformation of ikaite to calcite at temperatures between 5 and 8°C provides an upper limit on the oxygen isotopic composition of the pore waters: -2.6 ikaite precipitation. Data previously reported as 11 to 16°C (assuming δ w = 0.0‰SMOW) yield paleotemperatures ranging from -1 to 5°C, squarely in the range of ikaite stability. The low δ w indicates hyposaline conditions, most likely caused by mixing high latitude meteoric waters with seawater. The 18O depleted, low temperature waters suggest that the region was at least seasonally colder than previously accepted.

  13. Pleistocene Homo sapiens from Middle Awash, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Tim D; Asfaw, Berhane; DeGusta, David; Gilbert, Henry; Richards, Gary D; Suwa, Gen; Howell, F Clark

    2003-06-12

    The origin of anatomically modern Homo sapiens and the fate of Neanderthals have been fundamental questions in human evolutionary studies for over a century. A key barrier to the resolution of these questions has been the lack of substantial and accurately dated African hominid fossils from between 100,000 and 300,000 years ago. Here we describe fossilized hominid crania from Herto, Middle Awash, Ethiopia, that fill this gap and provide crucial evidence on the location, timing and contextual circumstances of the emergence of Homo sapiens. Radioisotopically dated to between 160,000 and 154,000 years ago, these new fossils predate classic Neanderthals and lack their derived features. The Herto hominids are morphologically and chronologically intermediate between archaic African fossils and later anatomically modern Late Pleistocene humans. They therefore represent the probable immediate ancestors of anatomically modern humans. Their anatomy and antiquity constitute strong evidence of modern-human emergence in Africa.

  14. Early hominins in Europe: The Galerian migration hypothesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muttoni, Giovanni; Scardia, Giancarlo; Kent, Dennis V.

    2018-01-01

    Our updated review of sites bearing hominin remains and/or tools from Europe, including new findings from the Balkans, still indicates that the only compelling evidence of main hominin presence in these regions was only since ∼0.9 million years ago (Ma), bracketed by the end of the Jaramillo geomagnetic polarity subchron (0.99 Ma) and the Brunhes-Matuyama polarity chron boundary (0.78 Ma). This time window straddled the late Early Pleistocene climate transition (EPT) at the onset of enhanced glacial/interglacial activity that reverberated worldwide. Europe may have become initially populated during the EPT when, possibly for the first time in the Pleistocene, vast and exploitable ecosystems were generated along the eustatically emergent Po-Danube terrestrial conduit. These newly formed settings, characterized by stable terrestrial lowlands with open grasslands and reduced woody cover especially during glacial/interglacial transitions, are regarded as optimal ecosystems for several large Galerian immigrant mammals such as African and Asian megaherbivores, possibly linked with hominins in a common food web, to expand into en route to Europe. The question of when hominins first arrived in Europe thus places the issue in the context of changes in climate, paleogeography and faunal associations as potential environmental drivers and controlling agents in a specific time frame, a key feature of the Galerian migration hypothesis.

  15. Late Pleistocene - Holocene development of the Tista megafan (West Bengal, India): 10Be cosmogenic and IRSL age constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrahami, Rachel; Huyghe, Pascale; van der Beek, Peter; Lowick, Sally; Carcaillet, Julien; Chakraborty, Tapan

    2018-04-01

    The Himalayan proximal foreland is characterized by Quaternary megafans, of which the formational mechanisms remain debated. The Tista megafan spreads over more than 16,000 km2 from the mountain front, where it is strongly incised, to the confluence of the Tista River with the Jamuna/Brahmaputra River, and stores sediments produced in the Sikkim Himalaya. We propose a scenario for the late Pleistocene - Holocene development of the Tista megafan based on new 10Be cosmogenic and Infra-Red Stimulated Luminescence (IRSL) age constraints, and discuss the main potential controls on its evolution. We suggest that two distal lobes developed successively downstream from a common proximal lobe. Deposition in the proximal lobe took place since at least ∼135 ka and incision began at 3.7-0.7+1.0 ka. The western distal lobe of the megafan was deposited early in the history of the megafan, when the Sikkim Himalaya catchment was drained by a tributary of the Ganga River, and was abandoned in the early Holocene (10-11 ka). The eastern, recent (active. Approximately synchronous incision between terraces in the hinterland and megafan surfaces suggests that incision propagated rapidly through the system. Our data do not evidence a direct link between incicion and tectonic processes. Aggradation and incision episodes appear more compatible with a climatic control, through changes in monsoon intensity and associated sediment flux. Depositional episodes in the Tista megafan, as elsewhere in the Himalaya and its foreland, appear to correlate with periods of strong monsoon precipitation and associated high sediment flux toward the foreland. Abandonment and incision of megafan surfaces and hinterland terraces appear associated to both the onset and the ending of phases of strong monsoon precipitation, during which the balance between water and sediment discharge changes rapidly.

  16. Plio-Pleistocene extinctions and immigration credit reflected in the size-frequency distribution of Mediterranean marine bivalves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawrot, Rafal; Zuschin, Martin; Chattopadhyay, Devapriya

    2015-04-01

    Following the opening of the Suez Canal hundreds of Red Sea species have entered the Mediterranean Sea making it a global hot spot of marine bioinvasion. With the ongoing influx of the subtropical and tropical alien species and increasing sea surface temperatures, the Mediterranean biota is currently gaining a more tropical character and increasingly becoming a mixture of faunal stocks with different evolutionary histories. This susceptibility to invasion was suggested to reflect the presence of an empty ecological space left after decimation of incumbent warm-water fauna during Plio-Pleistocene climate fluctuations. As molluscs are among the most prolific immigrants, we test this hypothesis using data on taxonomic composition and body size of Pliocene Mediterranean bivalves derived from the literature sources and museum collections. The Pliocene inter-specific size-frequency distribution (SFD) is strikingly similar to the SFDs of the Recent Red Sea bivalve fauna, in spite of different biogeographic provenance and the absence of true reef ecosystems in the Pliocene of the Mediterranean region. In contrast, body-size patterns in both assemblages are significantly different from the present-day Mediterranean fauna characterized by smaller median and modal size. Our preliminary results suggest that the distinct shape of the modern Mediterranean SFD may reflect the selective nature of the late Piacenzian - Galesian (Late Pliocene - Early Pleistocene) extinctions pulses related to the onset of the Northern Hemisphere glaciations. These extinctions affected almost 40% of Pliocene species and were biased towards large-bodied taxa. They were not followed by re-immigration of warm-water species owing to the isolation from the tropical Atlantic biota by the cold upwelling along the NW coasts of Africa. The resulting invasion credit (sensu Jackson & Sax, 2010) is currently being paid by the Red Sea bivalves colonizing the Mediterranean Sea through the Suez Canal. Successful

  17. Canyon Creek: A late Pleistocene vertebrate locality in interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Florence R.; Hamilton, Thomas D.; Hopkins, David M.; Repenning, Charles A.; Haas, Herbert

    1981-09-01

    The Canyon Creek vertebrate-fossil locality is an extensive road cut near Fairbanks that exposes sediments that range in age from early Wisconsin to late Holocene. Tanana River gravel at the base of the section evidently formed during the Delta Glaciation of the north-central Alaska Range. Younger layers and lenses of fluvial sand are interbedded with arkosic gravel from Canyon Creek that contains tephra as well as fossil bones of an interstadial fauna about 40,000 years old. Solifluction deposits containing ventifacts, wedge casts, and rodent burrows formed during a subsequent period of periglacial activity that took place during the maximum phase of Donnelly Glaciation about 25,000-17,000 years ago. Overlying sheets of eolian sand are separated by a 9500-year-old paleosol that may correlate with a phase of early Holocene spruce expansion through central Alaska. The Pleistocene fauna from Canyon Creek consists of rodents (indicated by burrows), Mammuthus primigenius (woolly mammoth), Equus lambei (Yukon wild ass), Camelops hesternus (western camel), Bison sp. cf. B. crassicornis (large-horned bison), Ovis sp. cf. O. dalli (mountain sheep), Canis sp. cf. C. lupus (wolf), Lepus sp. cf. L. othus or L. arcticus (tundra hare), and Rangifer sp. (caribou). This assemblage suggests an open landscape in which trees and tall shrubs were either absent or confined to sheltered and moist sites. Camelops evidently was present in eastern Beringia during the middle Wisconsin interstadial interval but may have disappeared during the following glacial episode. The stratigraphic section at Canyon Creek appears to demonstrate that the Delta Glaciation of the north-central Alaska Range is at least in part of early Wisconsin age and was separated from the succeeding Donnelly Glaciation by an interstadial rather than interglacial episode.

  18. Geographic and temporal trends in proboscidean and human radiocarbon histories during the late Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ugan, Andrew; Byers, David

    2007-12-01

    The causes of large animal extinctions at the end of the Pleistocene remain a hotly debated topic focused primarily on the effects of human over hunting and climate change. Here we examine multiple, large radiocarbon data sets for humans and extinct proboscideans and explore how variation in their temporal and geographic distributions were related prior to proboscidean extinction. These data include 4532 archaeological determinations from Europe and Siberia and 1177 mammoth and mastodont determinations from Europe, Siberia, and North America. All span the period from 45,000 to 12,000 calendar years BP. We show that while the geographic ranges of dated human occupations and proboscidean remains overlap across the terminal Pleistocene of the Old World, the two groups remain largely segregated and increases in the frequency of human occupations do not coincide with declines in proboscidean remains. Prior to the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM; ca 21,000 years BP), archaeological 14C determinations increase slightly in frequency worldwide while the frequency of dated proboscidean remains varies depending on taxon and location. After the LGM, both sympatric and allopatric groups of humans and proboscideans increase sharply as climatic conditions ameliorate. Post-LGM radiocarbon frequencies among proboscideans peak at different times, also depending upon taxon and location. Woolly mammoths in Beringia reach a maximum and then decline beginning between 16,000 and 15,500 years BP, woolly mammoths in Europe and Siberia ca 14,500 and 13,500 BP, and Columbian mammoth and American mastodont only after 13,000 BP. Declines among woolly mammoths appear to coincide with the restructuring of biotic communities following the Pleistocene-Holocene transition.

  19. Pleistocene niche stability and lineage diversification in the subtropical spider Araneus omnicolor (Araneidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elen A Peres

    Full Text Available The influence of Quaternary climate oscillations on the diversification of the South American fauna is being increasingly explored. However, most of these studies have focused on taxa that are endemic to tropical environments, and relatively few have treated organisms restricted to subtropical biomes. Here we used an integrative phylogeographical framework to investigate the effects of these climate events on the ecological niche and genetic patterns of the subtropical orb-weaver spider Araneus omnicolor (Araneidae. We analyzed the mitochondrial (Cytochrome Oxidase I, COI and nuclear (Internal Transcribed Subunit II, ITS2 DNA of 130 individuals throughout the species' range, and generated distribution models in three different climate scenarios [present, Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, and Last Interglacial Maximum (LIG]. Additionally, we used an Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC approach to compare possible demographic scenarios and select the hypothesis that better explains the genetic patterns of A. omnicolor. We obtained high haplotype diversity but low nucleotide variation among sequences. The population structure and demographic analyses showed discrepancies between markers, suggesting male-biased dispersal in the species. The time-calibrated COI phylogenetic inference showed a recent diversification of lineages (Middle/Late Pleistocene, while the paleoclimate modeling indicated niche stability since ~120 Kya. The ABC results agreed with the niche models, supporting a panmictic population as the most likely historical scenario for the species. These results indicate that A. omnicolor experienced no niche or population reductions during the Late Pleistocene, despite the intense landscape modifications that occurred in the subtropical region, and that other factors beside LGM and LIG climate oscillations might have contributed to the demographic history of this species. This pattern may be related to the high dispersal ability and wide

  20. Sedimentary architecture and chronostratigraphy of a late Quaternary incised-valley fill: A case study of the late Middle and Late Pleistocene Rhine system in the Netherlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peeters, J.; Busschers, F. S.; Stouthamer, E.; Bosch, J. H. A.; Van den Berg, M. W.; Wallinga, J.; Versendaal, A. J.; Bunnik, F. P. M.; Middelkoop, H.

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the sedimentary architecture, chronostratigraphy and palaeogeography of the late Middle and Late Pleistocene (Marine Isotope Stage/MIS 6-2) incised Rhine-valley fill in the central Netherlands based on six geological transects, luminescence dating, biostratigraphical data and a 3D geological model. The incised-valley fill consists of a ca. 50 m thick and 10-20 km wide sand-dominated succession and includes a well-developed sequence dating from the Last Interglacial: known as the Eemian in northwest Europe. The lower part of the valley fill contains coarse-grained fluvio-glacial and fluvial Rhine sediments that were deposited under Late Saalian (MIS 6) cold-climatic periglacial conditions and during the transition into the warm Eemian interglacial (MIS 5e-d). This unit is overlain by fine-grained fresh-water flood-basin deposits, which are transgressed by a fine-grained estuarine unit that formed during marine high-stand. This ca. 10 m thick sequence reflects gradual drowning of the Eemian interglacial fluvial Rhine system and transformation into an estuary due to relative sea-level rise. The chronological data suggests a delay in timing of regional Eemian interglacial transgression and sea-level high-stand of several thousand years, when compared to eustatic sea-level. As a result of this glacio-isostatic controlled delay, formation of the interglacial lower deltaic system took only place for a relative short period of time: progradation was therefore limited. During the cooler Weichselian Early Glacial period (MIS 5d-a) deposition of deltaic sediments continued and extensive westward progradation of the Rhine system occurred. Major parts of the Eemian and Weichselian Early Glacial deposits were eroded and buried as a result of sea-level lowering and climate cooling during the early Middle Weichselian (MIS 4-3). Near complete sedimentary preservation occurred along the margins of the incised valley allowing the detailed reconstruction presented

  1. A terrestrial Eocene stack: tying terrestrial lake ecology to marine carbon cycling through the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grogan, D. S.; Whiteside, J. H.; Musher, D.; Rosengard, S. Z.; Vankeuren, M. A.; Pancost, R. D.

    2010-12-01

    The lacustrine Green River Formation is known to span ≥15 million years through the early-middle Eocene, and recent work on radioisotopic dating has provided a framework on which to build ties to the orbitally-tuned marine Eocene record. Here we present a spliced stack of Fischer assay data from drilled cores of the Green River Formation that span both an East-West and a North-South transect of the Uinta Basin of Utah. Detailed work on two cores demonstrate that Fischer assay measurements covary with total organic carbon and bulk carbon isotopes, allowing us to use Fisher assay results as a representative carbon cycling proxy throughout the stack. We provide an age model for this core record by combining radioisotopic dates of tuff layers with frequency analysis of Fischer assay measurements. Identification of orbital frequencies tied directly to magnetochrons through radioisotopic dates allows for a direct comparison of the terrestrial to the marine Eocene record. Our analysis indicates that the marker beds used to correlate the stack cores represent periods of enhanced lake productivity and extreme carbon burial; however, unlike the hyperthermal events that are clearly marked in the marine Eocene record, the hydrocarbon-rich "Mahogany Bed" period of burial does not correspond to a clear carbon isotope excursion. This suggests that the terrestrial realm may have experienced extreme ecological responses to relatively small perturbations in the carbon cycle during the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum. To investigate the ecological responses to carbon cycle perturbations through the hydrocarbon rich beds, we analyzed a suite of microbial biomarkers, finding evidence for cyanobacteria, dinoflagellates, and potentially green sulfur bacteria. These taxa indicate fluctuating oxic/anoxic conditions in the lake during abrupt intervals of carbon burial, suggesting a lake biogeochemical regime with no modern analogues.

  2. Upper Pleistocene and Holocene palaeoenvironmental records in Cueva Mayor karst (Atapuerca, Spain from different proxies: speleothem crystal fabrics, palynology and archaeology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia Martínez-Pillado

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The Cueva Mayor karst system of Atapuerca, in Northern Spain, hosts a highly significant record of human occupation from the Pleistocene. The climatic context of the human activities during the Pleistocene-Holocene for this inland site has not been well constrained, since existing records of the palaeoclimatic evolution of the Northern Iberian Peninsula are from more distal coastal and high-elevation sites. In this study, we interpret the palaeoenvironmental information recorded on the petrography of a stalagmite and the pollen spectra of the Sierra de Atapuerca karst system during the last 20 kyr. The integration of both types of records has allowed us to define four palaeoenvironmental stages. During the Upper Pleistocene and until 12.8 kyr BP, the climate was cold and dry, toward the end of the interval evolving to wetter and warmer conditions. From 12.8 to 7.7 kyr BP, during the Mesolithic-Neolithic, a major erosion event in both records marks the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Around 5.9 kyr BP, the Late Neolithic, environmental conditions indicate a climatic optimum with a marked seasonality. The environmental conditions became drier from 4.2 kyr BP until the present, with a decrease in the woodlands. This aridity signal might be amplified by the impact of a more intense human agricultural activity after 3.1 kyr BP, during the Bronze Age.

  3. Fossil woods of Detarioideae subfamily (Fabaceae) from El Palmar Formation (Late Pleistocene) in South America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, R. Soledad; Brea, Mariana; Kröhling, Daniela M.

    2017-11-01

    The main aim of the present paper is to describe the first Detarioideae fossil woods from El Palmar Formation (Late Pleistocene) in the Uruguay River Basin (Entre Ríos, Argentina). This study is based on five silicified wood specimens preserved in fluvial deposits, which were transported from their growth site. Two new genera and species are described: Paraoxystigma concordiensis gen. nov and sp. nov. has medium-sized vessels, paratracheal axial parenchyma, heterocellular and multiseriate rays, and diffuse axial canals similar in size and shape to vessels, and Gossweilerodendroxylon palmariensis gen. nov and sp. nov. has medium-sized vessels, alternate intervessel pits, paratracheal and apotracheal axial parenchyma, homocellular and uni to-multiseriate rays, and small diffuse axial canals. These Detarioideae fossil records in south-eastern South America support the existence of a very old relationship with the extant West African forests. Eco-anatomical features observed in these fossil woods, along with the climatic information available from the Nearest Living Relatives (NLRs) comparison, suggest warm and humid climatic conditions for the upper-middle basin of the Uruguay River during some periods of the Late Pleistocene.

  4. Low Florida coral calcification rates in the Plio-Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brachert, Thomas C.; Reuter, Markus; Krüger, Stefan; Klaus, James S.; Helmle, Kevin; Lough, Janice M.

    2016-08-01

    In geological outcrops and drill cores from reef frameworks, the skeletons of scleractinian corals are usually leached and more or less completely transformed into sparry calcite because the highly porous skeletons formed of metastable aragonite (CaCO3) undergo rapid diagenetic alteration. Upon alteration, ghost structures of the distinct annual growth bands often allow for reconstructions of annual extension ( = growth) rates, but information on skeletal density needed for reconstructions of calcification rates is invariably lost. This report presents the bulk density, extension rates and calcification rates of fossil reef corals which underwent minor diagenetic alteration only. The corals derive from unlithified shallow water carbonates of the Florida platform (south-eastern USA), which formed during four interglacial sea level highstands dated approximately 3.2, 2.9, 1.8, and 1.2 Ma in the mid-Pliocene to early Pleistocene. With regard to the preservation, the coral skeletons display smooth growth surfaces with minor volumes of marine aragonite cement within intra-skeletal porosity. Within the skeletal structures, voids are commonly present along centres of calcification which lack secondary cements. Mean extension rates were 0.44 ± 0.19 cm yr-1 (range 0.16 to 0.86 cm yr-1), mean bulk density was 0.96 ± 0.36 g cm-3 (range 0.55 to 1.83 g cm-3) and calcification rates ranged from 0.18 to 0.82 g cm-2 yr-1 (mean 0.38 ± 0.16 g cm-2 yr-1), values which are 50 % of modern shallow-water reef corals. To understand the possible mechanisms behind these low calcification rates, we compared the fossil calcification rates with those of modern zooxanthellate corals (z corals) from the Western Atlantic (WA) and Indo-Pacific calibrated against sea surface temperature (SST). In the fossil data, we found a widely analogous relationship with SST in z corals from the WA, i.e. density increases and extension rate decreases with increasing SST, but over a significantly larger

  5. External auditory exostoses in the Xuchang and Xujiayao human remains: Patterns and implications among eastern Eurasian Middle and Late Pleistocene crania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trinkaus, Erik; Wu, Xiu-Jie

    2017-01-01

    In the context of Middle and Late Pleistocene eastern Eurasian human crania, the external auditory exostoses (EAE) of the late archaic Xuchang 1 and 2 and the Xujiayao 15 early Late Pleistocene human temporal bones are described. Xujiayao 15 has small EAE (Grade 1), Xuchang 1 presents bilateral medium EAE (Grade 2), and Xuchang 2 exhibits bilaterally large EAE (Grade 3), especially on the right side. These cranial remains join the other eastern Eurasian later Pleistocene humans in providing frequencies of 61% (N = 18) and 58% (N = 12) respectively for archaic and early modern human samples. These values are near the upper limits of recent human frequencies, and they imply frequent aquatic exposure among these Pleistocene humans. In addition, the medial extents of the Xuchang 1 and 2 EAE would have impinged on their tympanic membranes, and the large EAE of Xuchang 2 would have resulted in cerumen impaction. Both effects would have produced conductive hearing loss, a serious impairment in a Pleistocene foraging context.

  6. Zonation of uplifted pleistocene coral reefs on barbados, west indies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesolella, K J

    1967-05-05

    The coral species composition of uplifted Pleistocene reefs on Barbados is very similar to Recent West Indian reefs. Acropora palmata, Acropora cervicornis, and Montastrea annularis are qtuantitatively the most important of the coral species.

  7. Plio-Pleistocene Hyracoidea from Swartkrans Cave, South Africa

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    the decline in relative abundance and ultimate extinction of this species towards the end of the Pleistocene. Predators can ..... There is no reason to discount the possibility that leopards .... animal bones from archacologicaJ sites. Peabody Mus ...

  8. An enlarged parietal foramen in the late archaic Xujiayao 11 neurocranium from Northern China, and rare anomalies among Pleistocene Homo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiu-Jie; Xing, Song; Trinkaus, Erik

    2013-01-01

    We report here a neurocranial abnormality previously undescribed in Pleistocene human fossils, an enlarged parietal foramen (EPF) in the early Late Pleistocene Xujiayao 11 parietal bones from the Xujiayao (Houjiayao) site, northern China. Xujiayao 11 is a pair of partial posteromedial parietal bones from an adult. It exhibits thick cranial vault bones, arachnoid granulations, a deviated posterior sagittal suture, and a unilateral (right) parietal lacuna with a posteriorly-directed and enlarged endocranial vascular sulcus. Differential diagnosis indicates that the perforation is a congenital defect, an enlarged parietal foramen, commonly associated with cerebral venous and cranial vault anomalies. It was not lethal given the individual's age-at-death, but it may have been associated with secondary neurological deficiencies. The fossil constitutes the oldest evidence in human evolution of this very rare condition (a single enlarged parietal foramen). In combination with developmental and degenerative abnormalities in other Pleistocene human remains, it suggests demographic and survival patterns among Pleistocene Homo that led to an elevated frequency of conditions unknown or rare among recent humans.

  9. An enlarged parietal foramen in the late archaic Xujiayao 11 neurocranium from Northern China, and rare anomalies among Pleistocene Homo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiu-Jie Wu

    Full Text Available We report here a neurocranial abnormality previously undescribed in Pleistocene human fossils, an enlarged parietal foramen (EPF in the early Late Pleistocene Xujiayao 11 parietal bones from the Xujiayao (Houjiayao site, northern China. Xujiayao 11 is a pair of partial posteromedial parietal bones from an adult. It exhibits thick cranial vault bones, arachnoid granulations, a deviated posterior sagittal suture, and a unilateral (right parietal lacuna with a posteriorly-directed and enlarged endocranial vascular sulcus. Differential diagnosis indicates that the perforation is a congenital defect, an enlarged parietal foramen, commonly associated with cerebral venous and cranial vault anomalies. It was not lethal given the individual's age-at-death, but it may have been associated with secondary neurological deficiencies. The fossil constitutes the oldest evidence in human evolution of this very rare condition (a single enlarged parietal foramen. In combination with developmental and degenerative abnormalities in other Pleistocene human remains, it suggests demographic and survival patterns among Pleistocene Homo that led to an elevated frequency of conditions unknown or rare among recent humans.

  10. Expansion of the known distribution of Asiatic mouflon (Ovis orientalis) in the Late Pleistocene of the Southern Levant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeomans, Lisa; Martin, Louise; Richter, Tobias

    2017-08-01

    Wild sheep (Ovis orientalis) bones recovered from the Natufian site of Shubayqa 1 demonstrate a wider distribution of mouflon in the Late Pleistocene of the Southern Levant than previously known. Early Epipalaeolithic sites are common in the limestone steppe region of eastern Jordan but have yielded only a handful of caprine bones that cannot be identified to species level and few faunal remains from excavated Late Epipalaeolithic sites have been reported. Analysis of animal bone from Shubayqa 1 suggests a significant population of wild sheep could be found concentrated in the basalt desert environment of eastern Jordan during the Late Pleistocene, especially where higher rainfall over the Jebel Druze provided more water. A population of wild sheep was still present in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A when the nearby site of Shubayqa 6 was occupied. Hunting of diverse, locally available resources including wild sheep at the end of the Pleistocene illustrates the flexible and adaptive exploitation strategies that hunter-forager groups engaged in. This provides further evidence to the increasing body of data showing the creative and opportunistic approach of terminal Pleistocene groups allowing continued occupation even in more marginal environments in a period of environmental change.

  11. Phylogeography of the Alcippe morrisonia (Aves: Timaliidae: long population history beyond late Pleistocene glaciations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Shouhsien

    2009-06-01

    climate oscillations. Isolation by distance seems to be an important factor of genetic structure formation within geographical populations. Although glacial influence to population fluctuation was observed in late Pleistocene, it seems that populations in eastern China were more susceptible to climate change, and all geographical groups were growing stably through the Last Glacial Maximum. Coalescence analysis suggested that the ancestor of A. morrisonia might be traced back to the late Miocene, and the current phylogeographical structure of A. morrisonia is more likely to be attributable to a series geological events than to Pleistocene glacial cycles.

  12. Climate during the Roman and early-medieval periods in North-western Europe: a review of climate reconstructions from terrestrial archives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichelmann, Dana F. C.; Gouw-Bouman, Marjolein T. I. J.; Hoek, Wim Z.; van Lanen, Rowin J.; Stouthamer, Esther; Jansma, Esther

    2016-04-01

    High-resolution palaeoclimate reconstructions are essential to identify possible influences of climate variability on landscape evolution and landscape-related cultural changes (e.g., shifting settlement patterns and long-distance trade relations). North-western Europe is an ideal research area for comparison between climate variability and cultural transitions given its geomorphological diversity and the significant cultural changes that took place in this region during the last two millennia (e.g., the decline of the Roman Empire and the transition to medieval kingdoms). Compared to more global climate records, such as ice cores and marine sediments, terrestrial climate proxies have the advantage of representing a relatively short response time to regional climatic change. Furthermore for this region large quantity of climate reconstructions is available covering the last millennium, whereas for the first millennium AD only few high resolution climate reconstructions are available. We compiled climate reconstructions for sites in North-western Europe from the literature and its underlying data. All these reconstructions cover the time period of AD 1 to 1000. We only selected data with an annual to decadal resolution and a minimum resolution of 50 years. This resulted in 18 climate reconstructions from different archives such as chironomids (1), pollen (4), Sphagnum cellulose (1), stalagmites (6), testate amoebae (4), and tree-rings (2). The compilation of the different temperature reconstructions shows similar trends in most of the records. Colder conditions since AD 300 for a period of approximately 400 years and warmer conditions after AD 700 become apparent. A contradicting signal is found before AD 300 with warmer conditions indicated by most of the records but not all. This is likely the result of the use of different proxies, reflecting temperatures linked to different seasons. The compilation of the different precipitation reconstructions also show similar

  13. A long-standing Pleistocene refugium in southern Africa and a mosaic of refugia in East Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lorenzen, Eline; Masembe, Charles; Arctander, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Aim Previous genetic studies of African savanna ungulates have indicated Pleistocene refugial areas in East and southern Africa, and recent palynological, palaeovegetation and fossil studies have suggested the presence of a long-standing refugium in the south and a mosaic of refugia in the east....... Phylogeographic analysis of the common eland antelope, Taurotragus oryx (Bovidae), was used to assess these hypotheses and the existence of genetic signatures of Pleistocene climate change. Location The sub-Saharan savanna biome of East and southern Africa. Methods Mitochondrial DNA control-region fragments (414...... bp) from 122 individuals of common eland were analysed to elucidate the phylogeography, genetic diversity, spatial population structuring, historical migration and demographic history of the species. The phylogeographic split among major genetic lineages was dated using Bayesian coalescent...

  14. An atmosphere-ocean GCM modelling study of the climate response to changing Arctic seaways in the early Cenozoic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, C. D.; Legrande, A. N.; Tripati, A. K.

    2008-12-01

    The report of fossil Azolla (a freshwater aquatic fern) in sediments from the Lomonosov Ridge suggests low salinity conditions occurred in the Arctic Ocean in the early Eocene. Restricted passages between the Arctic Ocean and the surrounding oceans are hypothesized to have caused this Arctic freshening. We investigate this scenario using a water-isotope enabled atmosphere-ocean general circulation model with Eocene boundary conditions including 4xCO2, 7xCH4, altered bathymetry and topography, and an estimated distribution of Eocene vegetational types. In one experiment, oceanic exchange between the Arctic Ocean and other ocean basins was restricted to two shallow (~250 m) seaways, one in the North Atlantic, the Greenland-Norwegian seaway, and the second connecting the Arctic Ocean with the Tethys Ocean, the Turgai Straits. In the restricted configuration, the Greenland-Norwegian seaway was closed and exchange through the Turgai Straits was limited to a depth of ~60 m. The simulations suggest that the severe restriction of Arctic seaways in the early Eocene may have been sufficient to freshen Arctic Ocean surface waters, conducive to Azolla blooms. When exchange with the Arctic Ocean is limited, salinities in the upper several hundred meters of the water column decrease by ~10 psu. In some regions, surface salinity is within 2-3 psu of the reported maximum modern conditions tolerated by Azolla (~5 psu). In the restricted scenario, salt is stored preferentially in the North Atlantic and Tethys oceans, resulting in enhanced meridional overturning, increased poleward heat transport in the North Atlantic western boundary current, and warming of surface and intermediate waters in the North Atlantic by several degrees. Increased sensible and latent heat fluxes from the North Atlantic Ocean, combined with a reduction in cloud albedo, also lead to an increase in surface air temperature of over much of North America, Greenland and Eurasia. Our work is consistent with

  15. Overview of the Plio-Pleistocene geology of Rhodes, Greece. Lithology, calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphy, and sampling of the Kallithea Bay section

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Erik; Rasmussen, Tine Lander; Hastrup, Annette

    2005-01-01

    -water deposits are assigned to the Lindos Bay clay. Calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphy shows that the age of the marine sequence is early Pleistocene. The brackish water sediments are difficult to date, but they are probably of late Pliocene age. Sixty-nine samples representing all environments were...

  16. BIOCHRONOLOGY OF SELECTED MAMMALS, MOLLUSCS AND OSTRACODS FROM THE MIDDLE PLIOCENE TO THE LATE PLEISTOCENE IN ITALY. THE STATE OF THE ART

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. GLIOZZI

    1997-11-01

    Full Text Available The Authors have elaborated four range charts of mammalian (large and micro, molluscs and fresh-water and brackish ostracodes faunas, for the selected Plio-Pleistocene fossiliferous localities of the Italy. A new Mammal Age (Aurelian correlatable to late Middle and Late Pleistocene has been defined. Inside this age two Faunal Units (Torre in Pietra and Vitinia have been defined as characteristic for Early and Middle Aurelian, while no gisements have been chosen for the late Aurelian. Biochronological units are calibrated on magnetostratigraphic and isotopic scales and by radiometric datings.    

  17. Human influence on distribution and extinctions of the late Pleistocene Eurasian megafauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pushkina, Diana; Raia, Pasquale

    2008-06-01

    Late Pleistocene extinctions are of interest to paleontological and anthropological research. In North America and Australia, human occupation occurred during a short period of time and overexploitation may have led to the extinction of mammalian megafauna. In northern Eurasia megafaunal extinctions are believed to have occurred over a relatively longer period of time, perhaps as a result of changing environmental conditions, but the picture is much less clear. To consider megafaunal extinction in Eurasia, we compare differences in the geographical distribution and commonness of extinct and extant species between paleontological and archaeological localities from the late middle Pleistocene to Holocene. Purely paleontological localities, as well as most extinct species, were distributed north of archaeological sites and of the extant species, suggesting that apart from possible differences in adaptations between humans and other species, humans could also have a detrimental effect on large mammal distribution. However, evidence for human overexploitation applies only to the extinct steppe bison Bison priscus. Other human-preferred species survive into the Holocene, including Rangifer tarandus, Equus ferus, Capreolus capreolus, Cervus elaphus, Equus hemionus, Saiga tatarica, and Sus scrofa. Mammuthus primigenius and Megaloceros giganteus were rare in archaeological sites. Carnivores appear little influenced by human presence, although they become rarer in Holocene archaeological sites. Overall, the data are consistent with the conclusion that humans acted as efficient hunters selecting for the most abundant species. Our study supports the idea that the late Pleistocene extinctions were environmentally driven by climatic changes that triggered habitat fragmentation, species range reduction, and population decrease, after which human interference either by direct hunting or via indirect activities probably became critical.

  18. Synchronous genetic turnovers across Western Eurasia in Late Pleistocene collared lemmings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palkopoulou, Eleftheria; Baca, Mateusz; Abramson, Natalia I; Sablin, Mikhail; Socha, Paweł; Nadachowski, Adam; Prost, Stefan; Germonpré, Mietje; Kosintsev, Pavel; Smirnov, Nickolay G; Vartanyan, Sergey; Ponomarev, Dmitry; Nyström, Johanna; Nikolskiy, Pavel; Jass, Christopher N; Litvinov, Yuriy N; Kalthoff, Daniela C; Grigoriev, Semyon; Fadeeva, Tatyana; Douka, Aikaterini; Higham, Thomas F G; Ersmark, Erik; Pitulko, Vladimir; Pavlova, Elena; Stewart, John R; Węgleński, Piotr; Stankovic, Anna; Dalén, Love

    2016-05-01

    Recent palaeogenetic studies indicate a highly dynamic history in collared lemmings (Dicrostonyx spp.), with several demographical changes linked to climatic fluctuations that took place during the last glaciation. At the western range margin of D. torquatus, these changes were characterized by a series of local extinctions and recolonizations. However, it is unclear whether this pattern represents a local phenomenon, possibly driven by ecological edge effects, or a global phenomenon that took place across large geographical scales. To address this, we explored the palaeogenetic history of the collared lemming using a next-generation sequencing approach for pooled mitochondrial DNA amplicons. Sequences were obtained from over 300 fossil remains sampled across Eurasia and two sites in North America. We identified five mitochondrial lineages of D. torquatus that succeeded each other through time across Europe and western Russia, indicating a history of repeated population extinctions and recolonizations, most likely from eastern Russia, during the last 50 000 years. The observation of repeated extinctions across such a vast geographical range indicates large-scale changes in the steppe-tundra environment in western Eurasia during the last glaciation. All Holocene samples, from across the species' entire range, belonged to only one of the five mitochondrial lineages. Thus, extant D. torquatus populations only harbour a small fraction of the total genetic diversity that existed across different stages of the Late Pleistocene. In North American samples, haplotypes belonging to both D. groenlandicus and D. richardsoni were recovered from a Late Pleistocene site in south-western Canada. This suggests that D. groenlandicus had a more southern and D. richardsoni a more northern glacial distribution than previously thought. This study provides significant insights into the population dynamics of a small mammal at a large geographical scale and reveals a rather complex

  19. Indian Ocean circulation changes over the Middle Pleistocene Transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrick, B.; Auer, G.; De Vleeschouwer, D.; Christensen, B. A.; Stolfi, C.; Reuning, L.; Martinez-Garcia, A.; Haug, G. H.; Bogus, K.

    2017-12-01

    The Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT; 1.4 - 0.4 Ma) represents a climatic shift towards climate cycles at a quasi-100-kyr frequency. Although, several high-resolution records covering the MPT from globally distributed archives exist, there is only sparse evidence on changes in heat exchange between the Pacific and Indian Oceans, which represents a crucial part of the global thermohaline circulation (THC). Deciphering the influence of this heat exchange via the Indonesian Throughflow (ITF) is an important step in understanding the causes of the MPT. The Leeuwin Current off Western Australia is directly influenced by the ITF and can therefore be used to reconstruct ITF variability during the MPT. Today, the Leeuwin Current is the only southward flowing eastern boundary current in the southern hemisphere. The onset of the current is unknown but is proposed to have occurred 1 Ma and was likely related to significant changes in ITF dynamics during the MPT We present the first continuous reconstruction of changes in the Leeuwin Current during the MPT using data from IODP Expedition 356 Site U1460. The site is located at 29°S in the path of the current. High sedimentation rates ( 30 cm/ka) at Site U1460 provide the opportunity for high-resolution reconstruction of the MPT. We reconstruct paleoenvironmental variability by combining XRF, organic geochemistry, ICP-MS and XRD data with shipboard data, to reconstruct Leeuwin Current and ITF variability. Initial analyses show clear indications that upwelling off Western Australia intensified during the MPT, indicated by increased primary productivity related to increased nutrient levels, from 900-600 ka. Our results also suggest that the west Australian current (WAC) strengthened during this time supplying cool eutrophic waters from the high southern latitutes to the site. This intensification of the WAC may have had major implications for the Indian Ocean current system, but also the THC at large. This seems to be coupled with

  20. Lithic technological responses to Late Pleistocene glacial cycling at Pinnacle Point Site 5-6, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Kyle S.; Oestmo, Simen; Pereira, Telmo; Ranhorn, Kathryn L.; Schoville, Benjamin J.; Marean, Curtis W.

    2017-01-01

    There are multiple hypotheses for human responses to glacial cycling in the Late Pleistocene, including changes in population size, interconnectedness, and mobility. Lithic technological analysis informs us of human responses to environmental change because lithic assemblage characteristics are a reflection of raw material transport, reduction, and discard behaviors that depend on hunter-gatherer social and economic decisions. Pinnacle Point Site 5–6 (PP5-6), Western Cape, South Africa is an ideal locality for examining the influence of glacial cycling on early modern human behaviors because it preserves a long sequence spanning marine isotope stages (MIS) 5, 4, and 3 and is associated with robust records of paleoenvironmental change. The analysis presented here addresses the question, what, if any, lithic assemblage traits at PP5-6 represent changing behavioral responses to the MIS 5-4-3 interglacial-glacial cycle? It statistically evaluates changes in 93 traits with no a priori assumptions about which traits may significantly associate with MIS. In contrast to other studies that claim that there is little relationship between broad-scale patterns of climate change and lithic technology, we identified the following characteristics that are associated with MIS 4: increased use of quartz, increased evidence for outcrop sources of quartzite and silcrete, increased evidence for earlier stages of reduction in silcrete, evidence for increased flaking efficiency in all raw material types, and changes in tool types and function for silcrete. Based on these results, we suggest that foragers responded to MIS 4 glacial environmental conditions at PP5-6 with increased population or group sizes, ‘place provisioning’, longer and/or more intense site occupations, and decreased residential mobility. Several other traits, including silcrete frequency, do not exhibit an association with MIS. Backed pieces, once they appear in the PP5-6 record during MIS 4, persist through MIS

  1. Potential benefits of early vigor and changes in phenology in wheat to adapt to warmer and drier climates

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ludwig, F.; Asseng, S.

    2010-01-01

    Developing crop cultivars with novel traits could help agriculture adapt to climate change. As introducing new traits into crops is expensive and time consuming, it is helpful to develop methods which can test whether a potential new plant trait increases or maintains production in future climates.

  2. Postglacial Human resilience and susceptibility to abrupt climate change new insights from Star Carr

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blockley, Simon; Abrook, Ashley; Bayliss, Alex; Candy, Ian; Conneller, Chantal; Darvill, Chris; Deeprose, Laura; Kearney, Rebecca; Langdon, Pete; Langdon Langdon, Cath; Lincoln, Paul; Macleod, Alison; Matthews, Ian; Palmer, Adrian; Schreve, Danielle; Taylor, Barry; Milner, Nicky

    2017-04-01

    We know little about the lives of the early humans who lived during the early Postglacial period (the Lateglacial and Early Holocene), a time characterised by abrupt climate change after 16,000, which includes a series of abrupt climatic transitions linked to the reorganisation of the global environment after the glacial maximum and the last major global warming event at the onset of the Holocene. The hunter-gatherers who lived during the early Postglacial have been characterised as highly mobile, dispersed and living within small groups, and there is much debate as to how they adapted to climatic and environmental change: did they move in response to climatic transitions (and if so what was the climatic threshold), or instead adapt their lifeways to the new environmental conditions? A key area for examining these ideas is the British Isles as it sits on the Atlantic fringe of Northwest Europe with a climate that is highly responsive to the wider climate forcing experienced in the northern Hemisphere. Furthermore, in this period, Britain is directly linked to continental Europe due to lowered global sea levels allowing for the ease of human migration in and out of this region. In general the British record has been seen as being dominated by abandonment and reoccupation in the Postglacial during periods of climatic transition with hunter-gatherer mobility being closely linked to the prevailing environment. Recent discoveries at the Early Mesolithic site of Star Carr and surrounding area, linked to local and regional climate records, based on isotopic, chironomid and pollen proxy data and dated at high chronological resolution, offer a new picture. Postglacial human occupation of the area commences at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition but is short lived and appears to end close to the Pre-Boreal Oscillation, However, this is followed by a period where hunter-gatherers occupy Star Carr and settle and invest time and effort into building huts and large scale wooden

  3. MALACOLOGICAL RESPONSE TO PLEISTOCENE SEA-LEVEL CHANGE IN THE NORTHERN PO PLAIN, N. ITALY: DETAILED PALAEOENVIRONMENTAL RECONSTRUCTIONS FROM TWO LOMBARDIAN CORES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DANIELE GIANOLLA

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The interdisciplinary study of two deep cores drilled in Pleistocene basin fill at Northern margin of Po Plain, has been integrated with qualitative and quantitative malacological analysis. The potential of quantitative malacological analysis, to refine results obtained from interdisciplinary studies, is here highlighted. The evolution of malacological assemblages has been recorded and correlated to the general regressive trend recognized all over the Po Basin. Lower Pleistocene marine deposits, found at core base (Jaramillo Subchron and older, were gradually replaced by transitional and continental deposits since latest early Pleistocene. Area was eventually covered by continental conglomerate deposits (“Ceppo” facies during middle-late Pleistocene. Within this general trend, regional significance of a major unconformity (“r” surface, related to onset of Pleistocene glacial cycle, is confirmed. However, as evidenced by malacology, the roughly synchronous onset of coarse clastic progradation did not result in a synchronous shift from marine to transitional and continental settings all over the study area, as an effect of inherited topography and other local factors. During marine sedimentation, fossil record allowed us to recognize a transgressive event, reliably correlated to Marine Isotope Stage 35. 

  4. The Late Pleistocene distribution of vicuñas (Vicugna vicugna) and the “extinction” of the gracile llama (“Lama gracilis”): New molecular data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstock, Jaco; Shapiro, Beth; Prieto, Alfredo; Marín, Juan Carlos; González, Benito A.; Gilbert, M. Thomas P.; Willerslev, Eske

    2009-07-01

    We present the results of a palaeogenetic analysis of two Late Pleistocene camelids originating in southern Chile. Our analysis of two mitochondrial DNA fragments (control region and cytochrome b gene) reveals that these specimens do not belong to an extinct taxon, but rather to extant vicuña ( Vicugna vicugna), whose modern distribution is restricted to the extreme elevations of the Andes, more than 3500 km to the north of where these specimens originated. Our results also suggest fossil specimens from Patagonia that are currently assigned to the extinct taxon Lama gracilis, may actually belong to V. vicugna, implying a continuous distribution of the latter from the southern tip of South America to the Andes during the Final Pleistocene. The haplotypes of both specimens are not present in modern populations, suggesting a loss of genetic diversity concomitant with the contraction of the vicuña geographical distribution during the Final Pleistocene or early Holocene.

  5. Bovids as indicators of Plio-Pleistocene paleoenvironments in east Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kappelman, J; Plummer, T; Bishop, L; Duncan, A; Appleton, S

    1997-01-01

    Reconstructions of the paleoenvironments of early hominids offer a framework for understanding hominid ecological and behavioral adaptations. Habitat reconstructions typically rely upon various biological or physical habitat indicators, and here we present reconstructions of the Plio-Pleistocene paleohabitats of Koobi Fora and Olduvai Gorge as based on fossil bovids (Artiodactyla: Bovidae). Bovids are the most common faunal element at most Neogene hominid and hominoid fossil localities and have been widely studied. This study addresses the functional morphology of the bovid femur through discriminant function analysis and provides additional support for the observation that certain features of the femur demonstrate clear correlations with the amount of vegetative cover in different modern habitats. The reconstructions for both Koobi Fora and Olduvai Gorge suggest that the full range of environments inhabited by living bovids was present during the Plio-Pleistocene. Koobi Fora appears to have had a somewhat higher percentage of more closed habitats than the relatively more open habitats of Olduvai Gorge. These habitat reconstructions are in broad agreement with other reconstructions based on a purely taxonomic approach to the bovid remains. Grounding our reconstructions of paleoenvironments in studies of functional morphology can help to develop a richer idea of the habitats and resources available to early hominids.

  6. Quantitative palaeodrainage analysis in the Pleistocene of the Po Plain (Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vezzoli, G.; Garzanti, E.; Sciunnach, D.

    2009-04-01

    During the Pleistocene, Po Plain deposits recorded repeated waxing and waning of Alpine ice caps, and thus provide an excellent opportunity to investigate the interactions between pronounced climatic fluctuations and background tectonic activity (Scardia et al., 2006), resulting in frequent changes of drainage patterns. A high-resolution Pleistocene stratigraphy, with a complete sedimentological, paleontological, petrographic-mineralogical, magneto-stratigraphic, and seismic data base, was recently obtained from eleven continuous cores drilled in the Lombardy Po Plain north of the Po River (ENI and Regione Lombardia, 2002). In the present study we focus on two cores in the proximal (Cilavegna) and distal plain (Pianengo), which best exemplify the drastic change in sedimentary systems and drainage patterns associated with the onset of major Pleistocene glaciations in the Alps (˜870ky; Muttoni et al., 2003). This climatic event is recorded by a regional unconformity (named R-unconformity by Muttoni et al., 2003), traced all across the Po Basin and encountered at -81 m depth in the Pianengo Core and at -98 m depth in the Cilavegna Core. The Cilavegna Core consists of metamorphiclastic floodplain sediments, capped by the R-unconformity and overlain by quartzofeldspathic braidplain deposits. The Pianengo Core consists of metamorphiclastic deltaic to floodpain sediments, capped by the R-unconformity and overlain by alluvial-fan gravels rich in carbonate pebbles; another unconformity at -39 m depth is overlain by metamorphiclastic braidplain deposits. Our quantitative approach to paleodrainage analysis is based on comprehensive information obtained from modern settings (Garzanti et al., 2004; 2006). End-member modelling and similarity analysis allows us to objectively compare detrital modes from modern and ancient deposits, and to reconstruct the evolution of sediment pathways through geologic time (Vezzoli and Garzanti 2009). The Cilavegna Core documents stepwise south

  7. Pleistocene reef development in Bulukumba, South Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Imran Andi

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Quaternary reefs are commonly studied right now to explain climate change during that time. They act as a good archive of climate change, because their develo