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Sample records for pleistocene ground sloths

  1. Muzzle of South American Pleistocene ground sloths (Xenarthra, Tardigrada).

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    Bargo, M Susana; Toledo, Néstor; Vizcaíno, Sergio F

    2006-02-01

    Sloths are among the most characteristic elements of the Cainozoic of South America and are represented, during the Pleistocene, by approximately nine genera of gigantic ground sloths (Megatheriidae and Mylodontidae). A few contributions have described their masticatory apparatus, but almost no attention has been paid to the reconstruction of the muzzle, an important feature to consider in relation to food intake, and particularly relevant in sloths because of the edentulous nature of the muzzle and its varied morphology. The relationship between dietary habits and shape and width of the muzzle is well documented in living herbivores and has been considered an important feature for the inference of alimentary styles in fossils, providing an interesting methodological tool that deserves to be considered for xenarthrans. The goal of this study was to examine models of food intake by reconstructing the appearance and shape of the muzzle in five species of Pleistocene ground sloths (Megatherium americanum, Glossotherium robustum, Lestodon armatus, Mylodon darwini, and Scelidotherium leptocephalum) using reconstructions of the nasal cartilages and facial muscles involved in food intake. The preservation of the nasal septum, and the scars for muscular attachment in the rostral part of the skulls, allow making a conservative reconstruction of muzzle anatomy in fossil sloths. Wide-muzzled ground sloths (Glossotherium and Lestodon) had a square, nonprehensile upper lip and were mostly bulk-feeders. The lips, coupled with the tongue, were used to pull out grass and herbaceous plants. Narrow-muzzled sloths (Mylodon, Scelidotherium, and Megatherium) had a cone-shaped and prehensile lip and were mixed or selective feeders. The prehensile lip was used to select particular plants or plant parts. (c) 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. Collagen Sequence Analysis of the Extinct Giant Ground Sloths Lestodon and Megatherium.

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    Michael Buckley

    Full Text Available For over 200 years, fossils of bizarre extinct creatures have been described from the Americas that have ranged from giant ground sloths to the 'native' South American ungulates, groups of mammals that evolved in relative isolation on South America. Ground sloths belong to the South American xenarthrans, a group with modern although morphologically and ecologically very different representatives (anteaters, armadillos and sloths, which has been proposed to be one of the four main eutherian clades. Recently, proteomics analyses of bone collagen have recently been used to yield a molecular phylogeny for a range of mammals including the unusual 'Malagasy aardvark' shown to be most closely related to the afrotherian tenrecs, and the south American ungulates supporting their morphological association with condylarths. However, proteomics results generate partial sequence information that could impact upon the phylogenetic placement that has not been appropriately tested. For comparison, this paper examines the phylogenetic potential of proteomics-based sequencing through the analysis of collagen extracted from two extinct giant ground sloths, Lestodon and Megatherium. The ground sloths were placed as sister taxa to extant sloths, but with a closer relationship between Lestodon and the extant sloths than the basal Megatherium. These results highlight that proteomics methods could yield plausible phylogenies that share similarities with other methods, but have the potential to be more useful in fossils beyond the limits of ancient DNA survival.

  3. Shasta ground sloth ( Nothrotheriops shastense hoffstetter) at Shelter Cave, New Mexico: Environment, diet, and extinction

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    Thompson, Robert S.; Van Devender, Thomas R.; Martin, Paul S.; Foppe, Theresa; Long, Austin

    1980-11-01

    Seven coprolites of the extinct Shasta ground sloth ( Nothrotheriops shastense) were recently discovered in the Los Angeles County Museum collection from Shelter Cave, New Mexico. Three dung balls provided radiocarbon ages of 11,330, 12,330 and 12,430 yr B.P. Packrat ( Neotoma) middens disclose a xeric juniper woodland at Shelter Cave during the sloth's occupation. Plant cuticles from the dung indicate that the ground sloth had a diet dominated by mormon tea ( Ephedra) and other xerophytic shrubs. Pollen spectra from the coprolites have high representations of anemophilous plants and low representations of the dietary items shown in the cuticle analysis. Fifteen radiocarbon dates of sloth dung obtained since 1974 strengthen the hypothesis that sloth extinction occurred about 11,000 yr B.P. Paleoenvironmental studies indicate that ground sloths lived in juniper woodlands and montane conifer communities. Nothrotheriops commonly dined on shrubs that are still present in these habitats. It is difficult to explain the demise of the Shasta ground sloth by climatic change or dietary stress. Human predation remains as a possible explanation; ground sloth extinction appears to coincide with the time of Clovis mammoth hunters.

  4. Youngest radiocarbon age for Jefferson's ground sloth, Megalonyx jeffersonii (Xenarthra, Megalonychidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregory McDonald, H.; Stafford, Thomas W.; Gnidovec, Dale M.

    2015-01-01

    A partial skeleton of the extinct ground sloth, Megalonyx jeffersonii, recovered from a farm near Millersburg, Ohio in 1890, was radiocarbon dated for the first time. The ungual dated is part of a skeleton mounted for exhibit at the Orton Geological Museum at Ohio State University and was the fir...

  5. Phylogeny, diet, and habitat of an extinct ground sloth from Cuchillo Curá, Neuquén Province, southwest Argentina

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    Hofreiter, Michael; Betancourt, Julio L.; Sbriller, Alicia Pelliza; Markgraf, Vera; McDonald, H. Gregory

    2003-01-01

    Advancements in ancient DNA analyses now permit comparative molecular and morphological studies of extinct animal dung commonly preserved in caves of semiarid regions. These new techniques are showcased using a unique dung deposit preserved in a late glacial vizcacha (Lagidium sp.) midden from a limestone cave in southwestern Argentina (38.5° S). Phylogenetic analyses of the mitochondrial DNA show that the dung originated from a small ground sloth species not yet represented by skeletal material in the region, and not closely related to any of the four previously sequenced extinct and extant sloth species. Analyses of pollen and plant cuticles, as well as analyses of the chloroplast DNA, show that the Cuchillo Curá ground sloth browsed on many of the same herb, grass, and shrub genera common at the site today, and that its habitat was treeless Patagonian scrub-steppe. We envision a day when molecular analyses are used routinely to supplement morphological identifications and possibly to provide a time-lapse view of molecular diversification.

  6. Was Frozen Mammoth or Giant Ground Sloth Served for Dinner at The Explorers Club?

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    Jessica R Glass

    Full Text Available Accounts of woolly mammoths (Mammuthus primigenius preserved so well in ice that their meat is still edible have a long history of intriguing the public and influencing paleontological thought on Quaternary extinctions and climate, with some scientists resorting to catastrophism to explain the instantaneous freezing necessary to preserve edible meat. Famously, members of The Explorers Club purportedly dined on frozen mammoth from Alaska, USA, in 1951. This event, well received by the press and general public, became an enduring legend for the Club and popularized the notorious annual tradition of serving rare and exotic food at Club dinners that continues to this day. The Yale Peabody Museum holds a sample of meat preserved from the 1951 meal, interestingly labeled as a South American giant ground sloth (Megatherium, not mammoth. We sequenced a fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome-b gene and studied archival material to verify its identity, which if genuine, would extend the range of Megatherium over 600% and alter our views on ground sloth evolution. Our results indicate that the meat was not mammoth or Megatherium but green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas. The prehistoric dinner was likely an elaborate publicity stunt. Our study emphasizes the value of museums collecting and curating voucher specimens, particularly those used for evidence of extraordinary claims.

  7. Potential suitable areas of giant ground sloths dropped before its extinction in South America

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lima-Ribeiro, Matheus Souza; Varela, Sara; Nogues, David Bravo

    2012-01-01

    of the climate preferences through time for the two species and modeled their potential distributions at last glacial maximum (LGM, 21 ky BP) and mid-Holocene (6 ky BP) using Bioclimatic Envelope Modeling (BEM), fossil records and paleoclimatic simulations. The model predictions showed a drastic reduction......Here we analyze the effects that climatic changes through last ice age had on the potential distributions and extinction risk dynamics of two extinct species of South American giant ground sloths, Eremotherium laurillardi and Megatherium americanum. We tested the assumption of stability...

  8. Urban Sloths: Public Knowledge, Opinions, and Interactions

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    Kissia Ferreira Pereira

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Free-range sloths living in an urban environment are rare. In this study, the opinions, attitudes, and interactions with a population of Bradypus variegatus were investigated through short, structured interviews of people in the pubic square where the sloths live, in addition to informal, opportunistic observations of human-sloth interactions. A questionnaire was applied to people in the square where the sloths reside, and informal, opportunistic observations of human-sloth interactions were made. 95% of respondents knew of the sloths’ existence in the square and 87.8% liked their presence. Opinions about population size differed greatly and younger people were concerned as to whether the square was an appropriate place for them. Some human-sloth interactions showed the consequences of a lack of biological knowledge. People initiated all sloth-human interactions. The fact that sloths are strictly folivorous has avoided interactions with humans and, consequently, mitigated any negative impacts of the human-animal interaction on their wellbeing. These results demonstrate that, while there is a harmonious relationship between people and sloths, actions in environmental education of the square’s public could be beneficial for the sloths.

  9. Sloths like it hot: ambient temperature modulates food intake in the brown-throated sloth (Bradypus variegatus).

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    Cliffe, Rebecca N; Haupt, Ryan J; Avey-Arroyo, Judy A; Wilson, Rory P

    2015-01-01

    Sloths are considered to have one of the lowest mass-specific metabolic rates of any mammal and, in tandem with a slow digestive rate, have been theorized to have correspondingly low rates of ingestion. Here, we show in a study conducted over five months, that three captive Bradypus variegatus (Brown-throated sloths) had a remarkably low mean food intake of 17 g kg(-1)day(-1) (SD 4.2). Food consumption was significantly affected by ambient temperature, with increased intake at higher temperatures. We suggest that the known fluctuation of sloth core body temperature with ambient temperature affects the rate at which gut fauna process digesta, allowing for increased rates of fermentation at higher temperatures. Since Bradypus sloths maintain a constantly full stomach, faster rates of fermentation should enhance digestive throughput, increasing the capacity for higher levels of food intake, thereby allowing increased energy acquisition at higher ambient temperatures. This contrasts with other mammals, which tend to show increased levels of food intake in colder conditions, and points to the importance of temperature in regulating all aspects of energy use in sloths.

  10. Sloths like it hot: ambient temperature modulates food intake in the brown-throated sloth (Bradypus variegatus

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    Rebecca N. Cliffe

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Sloths are considered to have one of the lowest mass-specific metabolic rates of any mammal and, in tandem with a slow digestive rate, have been theorized to have correspondingly low rates of ingestion. Here, we show in a study conducted over five months, that three captive Bradypus variegatus (Brown-throated sloths had a remarkably low mean food intake of 17 g kg−1day−1 (SD 4.2. Food consumption was significantly affected by ambient temperature, with increased intake at higher temperatures. We suggest that the known fluctuation of sloth core body temperature with ambient temperature affects the rate at which gut fauna process digesta, allowing for increased rates of fermentation at higher temperatures. Since Bradypus sloths maintain a constantly full stomach, faster rates of fermentation should enhance digestive throughput, increasing the capacity for higher levels of food intake, thereby allowing increased energy acquisition at higher ambient temperatures. This contrasts with other mammals, which tend to show increased levels of food intake in colder conditions, and points to the importance of temperature in regulating all aspects of energy use in sloths.

  11. Evolutionary diversity of bile salts in reptiles and mammals, including analysis of ancient human and extinct giant ground sloth coprolites

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Bile salts are the major end-metabolites of cholesterol and are also important in lipid and protein digestion and in influencing the intestinal microflora. We greatly extend prior surveys of bile salt diversity in both reptiles and mammals, including analysis of 8,000 year old human coprolites and coprolites from the extinct Shasta ground sloth (Nothrotherium shastense). Results While there is significant variation of bile salts across species, bile salt profiles are generally stable within families and often within orders of reptiles and mammals, and do not directly correlate with differences in diet. The variation of bile salts generally accords with current molecular phylogenies of reptiles and mammals, including more recent groupings of squamate reptiles. For mammals, the most unusual finding was that the Paenungulates (elephants, manatees, and the rock hyrax) have a very different bile salt profile from the Rufous sengi and South American aardvark, two other mammals classified with Paenungulates in the cohort Afrotheria in molecular phylogenies. Analyses of the approximately 8,000 year old human coprolites yielded a bile salt profile very similar to that found in modern human feces. Analysis of the Shasta ground sloth coprolites (approximately 12,000 years old) showed the predominant presence of glycine-conjugated bile acids, similar to analyses of bile and feces of living sloths, in addition to a complex mixture of plant sterols and stanols expected from an herbivorous diet. Conclusions The bile salt synthetic pathway has become longer and more complex throughout vertebrate evolution, with some bile salt modifications only found within single groups such as marsupials. Analysis of the evolution of bile salt structures in different species provides a potentially rich model system for the evolution of a complex biochemical pathway in vertebrates. Our results also demonstrate the stability of bile salts in coprolites preserved in arid climates

  12. Evolutionary diversity of bile salts in reptiles and mammals, including analysis of ancient human and extinct giant ground sloth coprolites

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    Hofmann Alan F

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bile salts are the major end-metabolites of cholesterol and are also important in lipid and protein digestion and in influencing the intestinal microflora. We greatly extend prior surveys of bile salt diversity in both reptiles and mammals, including analysis of 8,000 year old human coprolites and coprolites from the extinct Shasta ground sloth (Nothrotherium shastense. Results While there is significant variation of bile salts across species, bile salt profiles are generally stable within families and often within orders of reptiles and mammals, and do not directly correlate with differences in diet. The variation of bile salts generally accords with current molecular phylogenies of reptiles and mammals, including more recent groupings of squamate reptiles. For mammals, the most unusual finding was that the Paenungulates (elephants, manatees, and the rock hyrax have a very different bile salt profile from the Rufous sengi and South American aardvark, two other mammals classified with Paenungulates in the cohort Afrotheria in molecular phylogenies. Analyses of the approximately 8,000 year old human coprolites yielded a bile salt profile very similar to that found in modern human feces. Analysis of the Shasta ground sloth coprolites (approximately 12,000 years old showed the predominant presence of glycine-conjugated bile acids, similar to analyses of bile and feces of living sloths, in addition to a complex mixture of plant sterols and stanols expected from an herbivorous diet. Conclusions The bile salt synthetic pathway has become longer and more complex throughout vertebrate evolution, with some bile salt modifications only found within single groups such as marsupials. Analysis of the evolution of bile salt structures in different species provides a potentially rich model system for the evolution of a complex biochemical pathway in vertebrates. Our results also demonstrate the stability of bile salts in coprolites

  13. SEROSURVEY OF SELECTED ARBOVIRAL PATHOGENS IN FREE-RANGING, TWO-TOED SLOTHS (CHOLOEPUS HOFFMANNI) AND THREE-TOED SLOTHS (BRADYPUS VARIEGATUS) IN COSTA RICA, 2005–07

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    Medlin, Scott; Deardorff, Eleanor R.; Hanley, Christopher S.; Vergneau-Grosset, Claire; Siudak-Campfield, Asia; Dallwig, Rebecca; Travassos da Rosa, Amelia; Tesh, Robert B.; Pia Martin, Maria; Weaver, Scott C.; Vaughan, Christopher; Ramirez, Oscar; Sladky, Kurt K.; Paul-Murphy, Joanne

    2016-01-01

    We screened for antibodies to 16 arboviruses in four populations of free-ranging sloths in Costa Rica. Blood samples were taken from 16 Hoffman’s two-toed sloths (HTSs; CHOLOEPUS HOFFMANNI) and 26 brown-throated sloths (BTSs; BRADYPUS VARIEGATUS) over a 3-yr period. We used serologic assays to detect antibodies against 10 arboviruses previously described in sloths (St. Louis encephalitis [SLEV], Changuinola, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, Ilheus [ILHV], Oropouche, Mayaro, Utinga, Murutucu, Punta Toro, and vesicular stomatitis [VSV] viruses) and six arboviruses not described in sloths (Rio Grande, West Nile [WNV], eastern equine encephalitis, Piry, Munguba, and La Crosse viruses). Overall, 80% of sloths had detectable antibodies to SLEV, 67% had antibodies to ILHV, 32% to Punta Toro virus, 30% to Changuinola virus, 15% to WNV, 14% to VSV, 11% to Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus, and 10% to Rio Grande virus. No samples had detectable antibodies to the remaining eight viruses. We found a significant increase in prevalence of antibody to VSV in HTSs between 2005 and 2007, and for WNV antibody between 2005 and 2006. We found no significant differences in the prevalences of antibodies to the sampled viruses between the two locations. Antibody prevalences were significantly higher in HTSs than in BTSs for SLEV in 2005. Antibody-positive results for ILHV were likely due to cross-reaction with SLEV. The novel finding of antibodies to Rio Grande virus in sloths could be due to cross-reaction with another phlebovirus. These findings might have implications for land management and domestic animal health. Due to the nature of the study, we could not determine whether sloths could represent amplification hosts for these viruses, or whether they were only exposed and could be used as sentinel species. Further studies are needed to fully characterize arboviral exposure in sloths. PMID:27479900

  14. Hypoadrenocorticism (Addison's disease) in a Hoffmann's two-toed sloth (Choloepus hoffmanni).

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    Kline, Sarah; Rooker, Leah; Nobrega-Lee, Michelle; Guthrie, Amanda

    2015-03-01

    A 22-yr-old, captive-born, presumed female Hoffmann's two-toed sloth (Choloepus hoffmanni) presented in respiratory distress with severe dehydration and symptoms of hypotension. During treatment, dysphagia was noted and oral examination revealed enlarged palatine tonsils and mucosal plaques. Bloodwork showed a decreased sodium:potassium ratio, a low baseline cortisol, a decreased adrenocorticotropin response test, and a blunted aldosterone stimulation test. All values were compared to a healthy male Hoffmann's two-toed sloth at the same facility. Despite aggressive medical management and treatment for hypoadrenocorticism, the sloth was found deceased. Necropsy revealed abdominal effusion, multifocal plaques throughout the upper gastrointestinal tract, and testes. Histopathology showed marked adrenal cortical atrophy and intranuclear mucosal inclusions in the gastrointestinal tract; advanced molecular techniques did not uncover any viral etiologies. This is the first reported case of hypoadrenocorticism in a sloth.

  15. Splendid oddness: revisiting the curious trophic relationships of South American Pleistocene mammals and their abundance

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    RICHARD A. FARIÑA

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The South American Pleistocene mammal fauna includes great-sized animals that have intrigued scientists for over two centuries. Here we intend to update the knowledge on its palaeoecology and provide new evidence regarding two approaches: energetics and population density and relative abundance of fossils per taxa. To determine whether an imbalance exists, population density models were applied to several South American fossil faunas and the results compared to those that best describe the palaeoecology of African faunas. The results on the abundance study for Uruguay and the province of Buenos Aires during the Lujanian stage/age reveal that bulk-feeding ground sloths (Lestodon and Glossotherium were more represented in the first territory, while the more selective Scelidotherium and Megatherium were more abundant in the second. Although the obtained values were corrected to avoid size-related taphonomic biases, linear regressions of abundance vs. body mass plots did not fit the expected either for first or second consumers. South American Pleistocene faunas behave differently from what models suggest they should. Changes in sea level and available area could account for these differences; the possibility of a floodplain in the area then emerged could explain seasonal changes, which would modify the calculations of energetics and abundance.

  16. Molecular prevalence and characterization of Hepatozoon ursi infection in Indian sloth bears (Melursus ursinus).

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    Pawar, Rahul Mohanchandra; Poornachandar, Anantula; Arun, Attur Shanmugam; Manikandan, Santhanam; Shivaji, Sisinthy

    2011-12-15

    Hepatozoon species are parasites that infect a wide variety of domestic and wild animals. The objective of the study was to detect the occurrence of Hepatozoon ursi in Indian sloth bears and to characterize the parasite based on phylogenetic analysis of the partial 18S rRNA gene sequence. Hepatozoon infection could be detected in 38 (70%) out of fifty-four blood samples of Indian sloth bears (captive and wild), suggestive of high prevalence of Hepatozoon infection in Indian sloth bears. Sequencing of partial 18S rRNA gene of the positive samples and BLAST analysis indicated that the nearest phylogenetic neighbour was H. ursi with which they exhibited 99-100% similarity. Additionally, Hepatozoon sp. isolated from wild sloth bears of India were identical to those in captive sloth bears and phylogenetically related to H. ursi reported from Japanese black bears from Japan. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the molecular characterization of H. ursi infection in Indian sloth bears. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Assessing sloth bears as surrogates for carnivore conservation in Sri Lanka

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    Ratnayeke, Shyamala; Van Manen, Frank T.

    2012-01-01

    Bears are large, charismatic mammals whose presence often garners conservation attention. Because healthy bear populations typically require large, contiguous areas of habitat, land conservation actions often are assumed to benefit co-occurring species, including other mammalian carnivores. However, we are not aware of an empirical test of this assumption. We used remote camera data from 2 national parks in Sri Lanka to test the hypothesis that the frequency of detection of sloth bears (Melursus ursinus) is associated with greater richness of carnivore species. We focused on mammalian carnivores because they play a pivotal role in the stability of ecological communities and are among Sri Lanka's most endangered species. Seven of Sri Lanka's carnivores are listed as endangered, vulnerable, or near threatened, and little empirical information exists on their status and distribution. During 2002–03, we placed camera traps at 152 sites to document carnivore species presence. We used Poisson regression to develop predictive models for 3 categories of dependent variables: species richness of (1) all carnivores, (2) carnivores considered at risk, and (3) carnivores of least conservation concern. For each category, we analyzed 8 a priori models based on combinations of sloth bear detections, sample year, and study area and used Akaike's information criterion (AICc) to test our research hypothesis. We detected sloth bears at 55 camera sites and detected 13 of Sri Lanka's 14 Carnivora species. Species richness of all carnivores showed positive associations with the number of sloth bear detections, regardless of study area. Sloth bear detections were also positively associated with species richness of carnivores at risk across both study years and study areas, but not with species richness of common carnivores. Sloth bears may serve as a valuable surrogate species whose habitat protection would contribute to conservation of other carnivores in Sri Lanka.

  18. Chewing through the Miocene: an examination of the feeding musculature in the ground sloth Hapalops from South America (Mammalia: Pilosa [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/2pu

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    Virginia L. Naples

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Hapalops, a smaller-sized and early sloth of the Megatheroidea, appeared in the middle Miocene Santa Cruz formation of Argentina. This genus is part of the group from which later, larger megatheroids arose, i.e., Nothrotheriops and Megatherium. Many cranial characters support this idea; however Hapalops is not merely a smaller antecedent of the later forms. Specifically, Hapalops retains short anterior caniniform teeth, and a temporomandibular joint elevated above the cheek tooth row; a combination distinct among sloths. An elevated temporomandibular joint occurs in Bradypus, a tree sloth with anterior chisel-shaped teeth instead of caniniforms, and the tree sloth Choloepus, which is aligned with the megalonychids, has anterior caniniforms. Hapalops has an elongated zygomatic ascending process that is reminiscent of that in Bradypus; however, the Bradypus skull is extremely foreshortened while that of Hapalops is elongated, as in nothrotheres, but not deepened as in megatheres. Previous work identified many sloth cranial character complexes, and functional limitations on skull feature combinations. The unique Hapalops character patterns indicate a selective feeder with a mediolaterally oriented grinding stroke during mastication.

  19. An update on the physiology of two- and three-toed sloths

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    D.P. Gilmore

    2000-02-01

    Full Text Available Physiological and pharmacological research undertaken on sloths during the past 30 years is comprehensively reviewed. This includes the numerous studies carried out upon the respiratory and cardiovascular systems, anesthesia, blood chemistry, neuromuscular responses, the brain and spinal cord, vision, sleeping and waking, water balance and kidney function and reproduction. Similarities and differences between the physiology of sloths and that of other mammals are discussed in detail.

  20. Patterns of morphological variation of extant sloth skulls and their implication for future conservation efforts.

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    Hautier, Lionel; Billet, Guillaume; Eastwood, Bethany; Lane, Jemima

    2014-06-01

    Several studies have shown an increased morphological variability of sloths from mammalian norms, affecting varied phenotypic traits from skeletal parts to soft tissues. We present here the first descriptive comparison of the whole skull morphology within the two extant sloth genera, combining geometric morphometric approaches with comparative anatomy. We used these methods to explore the patterns of the intra- and interspecific morphological variation of the skull with regard to several factors such as phylogeny, geography, allometry, or sexual dimorphism. Our study first revealed strong phylogenetic and geographical imprints on the cranial and mandibular morphological traits. This result demonstrates the importance of accurate knowledge of species and their geographical distributions; here we show from an example pertaining to Bradypus variegatus populations the implications this has on conservation management. Moreover, in order to control the amount of this detected variation, we tentatively compared sloths to a wide range of mammalian species. Our analysis found no significant increase in the average deviation of skull shape within each investigated sloth species compared to other mammals. This suggests that the intraspecific cranial variation in sloths does not depart significantly from the variation observed in other mammals. This result has positive implications for the demarcation of anatomical regions that maintain high levels of morphological variation in sloths. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Fecal estradiol and progesterone metabolite levels in the three-toed sloth (Bradypus variegatus

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    M. Mühlbauer

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available The present study was carried out to assess the possibility of measuring fecal steroid hormone metabolites as a noninvasive technique for monitoring reproductive function in the three-toed sloth, Bradypus variegatus. Levels of the estradiol (E2 and progesterone (P4 metabolites were measured by radioimmunoassay in fecal samples collected over 12 weeks from 4 captive female B. variegatus sloths. The validation of the radioimmunoassay for evaluation of fecal steroid metabolites was carried out by collecting 10 blood samples on the same day as defecation. There was a significant direct correlation between the plasma and fecal E2 and P4 levels (P < 0.05, Pearson's test, thereby validating this noninvasive technique for the study of the estrous cycle in these animals. Ovulation was detected in two sloths (SL03 and SL04 whose E2 levels reached 2237.43 and 6713.26 pg/g wet feces weight, respectively, for over four weeks, followed by an increase in P4 metabolites reaching 33.54 and 3242.68 ng/g wet feces weight, respectively. Interestingly, SL04, which presented higher levels of E2 and P4 metabolites, later gave birth to a healthy baby sloth. The results obtained indicate that this is a reliable technique for recording gonadal steroid secretion and thereby reproduction in sloths.

  2. Julia Sloth-Nielsen and Jacqui Gallinetti

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    juliasn

    The history of the development and passage through Parliament of the Child Justice ... Sloth-Nielsen J The Role of International law in Juvenile Justice Reform in .... rehabilitation and reintegration of children; balancing the interests of children and ... African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (African Children's ...

  3. Sloth biology: an update on their physiological ecology, behavior and role as vectors of arthropods and arboviruses

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    Gilmore D.P.

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available This is a review of the research undertaken since 1971 on the behavior and physiological ecology of sloths. The animals exhibit numerous fascinating features. Sloth hair is extremely specialized for a wet tropical environment and contains symbiotic algae. Activity shows circadian and seasonal variation. Nutrients derived from the food, particularly in Bradypus, only barely match the requirements for energy expenditure. Sloths are hosts to a fascinating array of commensal and parasitic arthropods and are carriers of various arthropod-borne viruses. Sloths are known reservoirs of the flagellate protozoan which causes leishmaniasis in humans, and may also carry trypanosomes and the protozoan Pneumocystis carinii.

  4. Molecular evidence for a diverse green algal community growing in the hair of sloths and a specific association with Trichophilus welckeri (Chlorophyta, Ulvophyceae

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    Chiarello Adriano G

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sloths are slow-moving arboreal mammals inhabiting tropical rainforests in Central and South America. The six living species of sloths are occasionally reported to display a greenish discoloration of their pelage. Trichophilus welckeri, a green algal species first described more than a century ago, is widely believed to discolor the animals fur and provide the sloth with effective camouflage. However, this phenomenon has not been explored in any detail and there is little evidence to substantiate this widely held opinion. Results Here we investigate the genetic diversity of the eukaryotic community present in fur of all six extant species of sloth. Analysis of 71 sloth hair samples yielding 426 partial 18S rRNA gene sequences demonstrates a diverse eukaryotic microbial assemblage. Phylogenetic analysis reveals that sloth fur hosts a number of green algal species and suggests that acquisition of these organisms from the surrounding rainforest plays an important role in the discoloration of sloth fur. However, an alga corresponding to the morphological description of Trichophilus welckeri was found to be frequent and abundant on sloth fur. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated the retention of this alga on the fur of sloths independent of geographic location. Conclusions These results demonstrate a unique diverse microbial eukaryotic community in the fur of sloths from Central and South America. Our analysis streghtens the case for symbiosis between sloths and Trichophilus welckeri.

  5. Pesticide exposure on sloths (Bradypus variegatus and Choloepus hoffmanni) in an agricultural landscape of Northeastern Costa Rica.

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    Pinnock Branford, Margaret Verónica; de la Cruz, Elba; Solano, Karla; Ramírez, Oscar

    2014-01-01

    Between 2005 and 2008, wild Bradypus variegatus and Choloepus hoffmanni inhabiting an agricultural landscape and captive animals from a rescue center in Northeastern Costa Rica were studied to assess exposure to pesticides. A total of 54 animals were sampled: 42 wild sloths captured at an agricultural landscape and 12 captive animals from a rescue center. Pesticides' active ingredients were determined in three sample matrices: hair, aqueous mixture (paws' wash) and cotton gauze (mouth clean) based on multi-residue gas chromatography methods. Recoveries tests ranged from 73 to 146% and relative standard deviations were less than 20% throughout all the recovery tests. Active ingredients detected in sloths samples were ametryn, chlorothalonil, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, difenoconazole, ethoprophos and thiabendazole. These active ingredients were used in intensive agricultural production for bananas, pineapples and other crops. Blood plasma cholinesterase activity (PChE) was determined by the Ellman method modified for micro plates. Enzyme activity determination was normalized to protein content in the samples according to Bradford method. Wild sloth PChE activity was similar for both species while sloths in captivity showed differences between species. Enzyme activity was significantly lower for two-toed sloths. This study showed that sloths were exposed to pesticides that caused acute and chronic effect in mammals and can also be a threat to other wildlife species. There is a need to better understand the potential effects of exposure to pesticides in sloths and other wild mammal populations, especially those threatened or endangered. More studies in this field must be carried out on the wildlife fauna inhabiting the agricultural landscape and its surroundings.

  6. Phylogenetic and functional implications of the ear region anatomy of Glossotherium robustum (Xenarthra, Mylodontidae) from the Late Pleistocene of Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boscaini, Alberto; Iurino, Dawid A.; Billet, Guillaume; Hautier, Lionel; Sardella, Raffaele; Tirao, German; Gaudin, Timothy J.; Pujos, François

    2018-04-01

    Several detailed studies of the external morphology of the ear region in extinct sloths have been published in the past few decades, and this anatomical region has proved extremely helpful in elucidating the phylogenetic relationships among the members of this mammalian clade. Few studies of the inner ear anatomy in these peculiar animals were conducted historically, but these are increasing in number in recent years, in both the extinct and extant representatives, due to wider access to CT-scanning facilities, which allow non-destructive access to internal morphologies. In the present study, we analyze the extinct ground sloth Glossotherium robustum and provide a description of the external features of the ear region and the endocranial side of the petrosal bone, coupled with the first data on the anatomy of the bony labyrinth. Some features observable in the ear region of G. robustum (e.g., the shape and size of the entotympanic bone and the morphology of the posteromedial surface of the petrosal) are highly variable, both intraspecifically and intraindividually. The form of the bony labyrinth of G. robustum is also described, providing the first data from this anatomical region for the family Mylodontidae. The anatomy of the bony labyrinth of the genus Glossotherium is here compared at the level of the superorder Xenarthra, including all available extant and extinct representatives, using geometric morphometric methods. In light of the new data, we discuss the evolution of inner ear anatomy in the xenarthran clade, and most particularly in sloths, considering the influence of phylogeny, allometry, and physiology on the shape of this highly informative region of the skull. These analyses show that the inner ear of Glossotherium more closely resembles that of the extant anteaters, and to a lesser extent those of the giant ground sloth Megatherium and euphractine armadillos, than those of the extant sloths Bradypus and Choloepus, further demonstrating the striking

  7. Novel 12S mtDNA findings in sloths (Pilosa, Folivora and anteaters (Pilosa, Vermilingua suggest a true case of long branch attraction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Claudene Barros

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available We sequenced 12S RNA mtDNA for the majority of the extant species of sloths and anteaters and compared our results with previous data obtained by our group using 16S RNA mtDNA in the same specimens and to GenBank sequences of the extinct giant sloth Mylodon. Our results suggest that pigmy-anteaters may be a case of the long-branch attraction phenomenon and also show the large genetic difference between the Amazonian and Atlantic forest three-toed sloths, contrasting with the small differences observed between the two non-Atlantic forest forms of sloths. These results have important implications for the taxonomy of sloths and anteaters and strongly suggest the placement of pigmy anteaters in their own family (Cyclopidae and raising the taxonomic status of Bradypus torquatus to a genus.

  8. Temporal and spatial resource use by female three-toed sloths and their young in an agricultural landscape in Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oscar Ramirez

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The information on ecological behavior of wild sloths is very scarce. In this study we determined the home ranges and resources used by three adult female three-toed sloths (Bradypus variegatus and their four young in an agricultural matrix of cacao (Theobroma cacao, pasture, riparian forests and living fencerows in Costa Rica. Births occurred during November-December and the young became independent at five to seven months of age. Initially, mothers remained fixed in one or a few trees, but expanded their use of resources as young sloths became independent from them. Mothers initially guided the young to preferred food and cover resources, but they gradually left their young in small nucleus areas and colonized new areas for themselves. Home range sizes for young sloths (up to seven months of age varied between 0.04-0.6 hectares, while home range sizes for mothers varied from 0.04-25.0 hectares. During the maternal care period, 22 tree species were used, with the most common being Cecropia obtusifolia (30.9%, Coussapoa villosa (25.6%, Nectandra salicifolia (12.1%, Pterocarpus officinalis (5.8% and Samanea saman (5.4%. However, young sloths used only 20 tree species, with the most common being C. villosa (18.4%, S. saman (18.5 % and N. salicifolia (16.7%. The cacao agroforest was used only by mother sloths and never by their young following separation. However, in the riparian forest, both mother sloths and young used the tree species. A total of 28 tree species were used by the mother sloth; including the food species: C. obtusifolia, C. villosa, N. salicifolia and P. officinalis. However, the young used 18 trees species in this habitat with N. salicifolia and S. saman most commonly used, although they rested and fed during the day in C. obtusifolia, C. villosa and O. sinnuata. The cacao agroforest with adjacent riparian forests and fencerows provides an important habitat type that links the smaller secondary forests and other patches. Rev

  9. Home ranges and habitat use of sloth bears Melursus ursinus inornatus in Wasgomuwa National Park, Sri Lanka

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratnayeke, S.; Van Manen, F.T.; Padmalal, U.K.G.K.

    2007-01-01

    We studied home ranges and habitat selection of 10 adult sloth bears Melursus ursinus inornatus at Wasgomuwa National Park, Sri Lanka during 2002-2003. Very little is known about the ecology and behaviour of M. u. inornatus, which is a subspecies found in Sri Lanka. Our study was undertaken to assess space and habitat requirements typical of a viable population of M. u. inornatus to facilitate future conservation efforts. We captured and radio-collared 10 adult sloth bears and used the telemetry data to assess home-range size and habitat use. Mean 95% fixed kernel home ranges were 2.2 km2 (SE = 0.61) and 3.8 km2 (SE = 1.01) for adult females and males, respectively. Although areas outside the national park were accessible to bears, home ranges were almost exclusively situated within the national park boundaries. Within the home ranges, high forests were used more and abandoned agricultural fields (chenas) were used less than expected based on availability. Our estimates of home-range size are among the smallest reported for any species of bear. Thus, despite its relatively small size, Wasgomuwa National Park may support a sizeable population of sloth bears. The restriction of human activity within protected areas may be necessary for long-term viability of sloth bear populations in Sri Lanka as is maintenance of forest or scrub cover in areas with existing sloth bear populations and along potential travel corridors. ?? Wildlife Biology 2007.

  10. Index of Relative Importance of the Dietary Proportions of Sloth Bear (Melursus ursinus in Semi-Arid Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tana P. MEWADA

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Characterisations of the Sloth bear (Melursus ursinus diet during three distinguished seasons (monsoon, winter and summer in the semi-arid region of western India was under study. Diet was estimated using scat analysis, based on the calculation of Index of Relative Importance (IRI in order to determine the contribution of different food items in the Sloth bear diet. Sloth bears were observed to feed on a wide variety of prey items. They are specialized on insect prey, particularly termites or ants, and are considered as myrmecophagous. The myrmecophagousis character was confirmed by the highest score of insect part (IRI = 21.37 from the samples (n = 566, which was followed by Diospyros melanoxylon (IRI Score 13.51, Ficus spp. (IRI score 12.69 and Cassia fistula (IRI Score 10.13. Sloth bear dietary proportions varied among the three seasons under the study interval. Data suggested that the Sloth bear is essentially behaving as an omnivore, having similar diet (in terms of high incidence of wild fruits and insects with the bears inhabiting semi-arid regions. The opportunistic and generalist strategy of selecting diet ingredients has probably helped the species to survive in semi-arid habitat across the North Gujarat.

  11. Effects of body weight and season on serum lipid concentrations in sloth bears (Melursus ursinus ursinus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shanmugam, Arun Attur; Kumar, Jadav Kajal; Selvaraj, Illayaraja; Selvaraj, Vimal

    2011-09-01

    Serum lipid levels were measured in 66 healthy sloth bears (Melursus ursinus ursinus) living under semicaptive conditions with access to natural food resources in the Bannerghatta Biological Park (Karnataka, India), a portion of their native habitat range in the Indian peninsula. Total cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels were analyzed. The effects of age, body weight, and season on these lipid parameters were statistically evaluated. There were no correlations between age and any of the serum lipid parameters analyzed. Positive correlations of body weight to both triglyceride and HDL cholesterol levels in these bears were identified. In addition, seasonal trends in physiological serum lipid values, potentially due to variations in the sloth bear diet, were identified. Serum triglyceride levels were higher during postmonsoon season and cholesterol levels were higher during winter compared to other seasons. Serum lipid values obtained from sloth bears in this study were also compared to previously published data on other members of the family Ursidae. This is the first report of serum lipid values as a reference for sloth bears. These values can be used as sensitive predictors of overall health and nutritional status to aid in the captive management and feeding of these bears.

  12. Characteristics of human - sloth bear (Melursus ursinus) encounters and the resulting human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor, Madhya Pradesh, India

    OpenAIRE

    Dhamorikar, Aniruddha H.; Mehta, Prakash; Bargali, Harendra; Gore, Kedar

    2017-01-01

    Sloth bears (Melursus ursinus) caused the highest number of human deaths between 2001 and 2015 and ranked second compared to other wild animals in causing human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor area. We studied the patterns of sloth bear attacks in the region to understand the reasons for conflict. We interviewed 166 victims of sloth bear attacks which occurred between 2004 and 2016 and found that most attacks occurred in forests (81%), with the greatest number of those (42%) occurring ...

  13. Novel 12S mtDNA findings in sloths (Pilosa, Folivora) and anteaters (Pilosa, Vermilingua) suggest a true case of long branch attraction

    OpenAIRE

    Barros, Maria Claudene; Sampaio, Iracilda; Schneider, Horacio

    2008-01-01

    We sequenced 12S RNA mtDNA for the majority of the extant species of sloths and anteaters and compared our results with previous data obtained by our group using 16S RNA mtDNA in the same specimens and to GenBank sequences of the extinct giant sloth Mylodon. Our results suggest that pigmy-anteaters may be a case of the long-branch attraction phenomenon and also show the large genetic difference between the Amazonian and Atlantic forest three-toed sloths, contrasting with the small differences...

  14. SEROLOGIC RESPONSE TO CANINE DISTEMPER VACCINATION IN CAPTIVE LINNAEUS'S TWO-TOED SLOTHS ( CHOLOEPUS DIDACTYLUS) AFTER A FATAL CANINE DISTEMPER VIRUS OUTBREAK.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheldon, Julie D; Cushing, Andrew C; Wilkes, Rebecca P; Anis, Eman; Dubovi, Edward J

    2017-12-01

    Canine distemper virus (CDV) affects many wild and captive, nondomestic species worldwide but has not been previously reported in Xenarthra. Paucity of information on vaccination safety and efficacy presents challenges for disease prevention in captive collections. CDV infections and subsequent mortalities in five captive Linnaeus's two-toed sloths ( Choloepus didactylus) in eastern Tennessee are reported. Clinical signs included oculonasal discharge, oral ulcerations, and diarrhea, and the diagnosis was confirmed by necropsy, histopathology, immunohistochemistry, virus isolation, and polymerase chain reaction. Viral sequencing identified the strain to be consistent with a new CDV lineage currently affecting domestic dogs and wildlife in Tennessee. Seven sloths were examined and vaccinated using a recombinant CDV vaccine on days 0 and 21. Subsequent blood samples showed increased titers in 3/4 sloths. Based on the outbreak and serologic findings postvaccination without adverse effects, the authors recommend recombinant CDV vaccination in sloths exposed to known carriers of CDV.

  15. Chronology and ancient feeding ecology of two upper Pleistocene megamammals from the Brazilian Intertropical Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Melo França, Lucas; Trindade Dantas, Mário André; Bocchiglieri, Adriana; Cherckinsky, Alexander; de Souza Ribeiro, Adauto; Bocherens, Hervé

    2014-09-01

    In Brazilian Intertropical Region (BIR) fossil remains of the giant ground sloth Eremotherium laurillardi (Lund, 1842) and of the proboscidean Notiomastodon platensis (Ameghino, 1888) are the most abundant among megaherbivores. However, the paleoecology of both species needs to be better understood to enlighten why these species disappear in the end of the Pleistocene, an issue that is still debated. During the last decades, the carbon and oxygen stable isotopes have been increasingly being used to obtain paleoecological information about extinct animals, although this information is in most cases dissociated from chronological data. Thus, the main objective of this study is to contribute to the knowledge about feeding ecology and chronology of E. laurillardi and N. platensis within BIR. For each fossil sample we performed stable isotopes analyses (δ13C/δ18O) and radiocarbon dating (14C with AMS). The results showed that N. platensis occurred between 12,125 and 19,594 cal yr BP and exhibited a grazer diet (δ13C = -1.1‰-1.3‰), while E. laurillardi lived between 11,084 and 27,690 cal yr BP, with a mixed feeder diet (C3/C4 plants; values ratio δ13C = -7.7‰ to -3.3‰). The δ18O values of N. platensis ranged between 2.20‰ and 3.60‰, while the values of E. laurillardi ranged between -3.10‰ and -1.10‰. Neither species did exhibit differences in its diet through time, which suggests that the vegetational composition of this locality did not vary in the late Pleistocene. Both species were living in an open environment, rich in herbaceous plants (C4 plants) and with tree and shrub with disjoint distribution, maybe similar to some parts of recent Caatinga, where they have partitioned the spatial and feeding niches.

  16. Size and shape stasis in late Pleistocene mammals and birds from Rancho La Brea during the Last Glacial-Interglacial cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prothero, Donald R.; Syverson, Valerie J.; Raymond, Kristina R.; Madan, Meena; Molina, Sarah; Fragomeni, Ashley; DeSantis, Sylvana; Sutyagina, Anastasiya; Gage, Gina L.

    2012-11-01

    Conventional neo-Darwinian theory views organisms as infinitely sensitive and responsive to their environments, and considers them able to readily change size or shape when they adapt to selective pressures. Yet since 1863 it has been well known that Pleistocene animals and plants do not show much morphological change or speciation in response to the glacial-interglacial climate cycles. We tested this hypothesis with all of the common birds (condors, golden and bald eagles, turkeys, caracaras) and mammals (dire wolves, saber-toothed cats, giant lions, horses, camels, bison, and ground sloths) from Rancho La Brea tar pits in Los Angeles, California, which preserves large samples of many bones from many well-dated pits spanning the 35,000 years of the Last Glacial-Interglacial cycle. Pollen evidence showed the climate changed from chaparral/oaks 35,000 years ago to snowy piñon-juniper forests at the peak glacial 20,000 years ago, then back to the modern chaparral since the glacial-interglacial transition. Based on Bergmann's rule, we would expect peak glacial specimens to have larger body sizes, and based on Allen's rule, peak glacial samples should have shorter and more robust limbs. Yet statistical analysis (ANOVA for parametric samples; Kruskal-Wallis test for non-parametric samples) showed that none of the Pleistocene pit samples is statistically distinct from the rest, indicating complete stasis from 35 ka to 9 ka. The sole exception was the Pit 13 sample of dire wolves (16 ka), which was significantly smaller than the rest, but this did not occur in response to climate change. We also performed a time series analysis of the pit samples. None showed directional change; all were either static or showed a random walk. Thus, the data show that birds and mammals at Rancho La Brea show complete stasis and were unresponsive to the major climate change that occurred at 20 ka, consistent with other studies of Pleistocene animals and plants. Most explanations for such

  17. Tundmatud kohad ja asjade loomus / Katrine Gram Sloth, Johna Hansen ; intervjueerinud Laura Põld

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Gram Sloth, Katrine, 1983-

    2016-01-01

    Taani kunstnik Katrine Gram Sloth ja Rootsi arhitekt Johna Hansen räägivad oma lapsepõlvest, kunstnikuteest, loomingust. Johna Hanseni jaapanipärasest einelaua installatsioonist "Laud" (2015-2016), Katrine Gram Slothi Islandil loodud teosest "Vista Revisited" (2015)

  18. Genomics meets applied ecology: Characterizing habitat quality for sloths in a tropical agroecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain, Emily D; Kang, Jung Koo; Tempel, Douglas J; Palsbøll, Per J; Pauli, Jonathan N; Zachariah Peery, M

    2018-01-01

    Understanding how habitat quality in heterogeneous landscapes governs the distribution and fitness of individuals is a fundamental aspect of ecology. While mean individual fitness is generally considered a key to assessing habitat quality, a comprehensive understanding of habitat quality in heterogeneous landscapes requires estimates of dispersal rates among habitat types. The increasing accessibility of genomic approaches, combined with field-based demographic methods, provides novel opportunities for incorporating dispersal estimation into assessments of habitat quality. In this study, we integrated genomic kinship approaches with field-based estimates of fitness components and approximate Bayesian computation (ABC) procedures to estimate habitat-specific dispersal rates and characterize habitat quality in two-toed sloths (Choloepus hoffmanni) occurring in a Costa Rican agricultural ecosystem. Field-based observations indicated that birth and survival rates were similar in a sparsely shaded cacao farm and adjacent cattle pasture-forest mosaic. Sloth density was threefold higher in pasture compared with cacao, whereas home range size and overlap were greater in cacao compared with pasture. Dispersal rates were similar between the two habitats, as estimated using ABC procedures applied to the spatial distribution of pairs of related individuals identified using 3,431 single nucleotide polymorphism and 11 microsatellite locus genotypes. Our results indicate that crops produced under a sparse overstorey can, in some cases, constitute lower-quality habitat than pasture-forest mosaics for sloths, perhaps because of differences in food resources or predator communities. Finally, our study demonstrates that integrating field-based demographic approaches with genomic methods can provide a powerful means for characterizing habitat quality for animal populations occurring in heterogeneous landscapes. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Unexpected strong polygyny in the brown-throated three-toed sloth.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan N Pauli

    Full Text Available Promiscuous mating strategies are much more common than previously appreciated. So much so, that several authors have proposed that promiscuity is the "rule" rather than the exception in vertebrate mating systems. Decreasing species mobility and increasing habitat fragmentation have both been suggested to reduce the "polygyny potential" of the environment and promote other mating strategies like promiscuity in females. We explored the social and genetic mating system for one of the most sedentary extant mammals, the brown-throated three-toed sloth (Bradypus variegatus, within a highly fragmented Neotropical habitat. Surprisingly, we found that three-toed sloths were strongly polygynous, with males excluding male competitors from their core ranges, and exhibiting strong reproductive skew. Indeed, only 25% of all resident adult males sired offspring and one individual sired half of all sampled juveniles. Paradoxically, a sedentary life-history strategy seems to facilitate polygyny in fragmented landscapes because multiple females can persist within small patches of habitat, and be monopolized by a single male. Our work demonstrates that strong polygyny can arise in systems in which the polygyny potential should be extremely low, and other strategies, including promiscuity, would be favoured. Mating systems can be influenced by a multitude of factor and are dynamic, varying among taxa, over time, and across habitats; consequently, mating systems remain difficult to predict based on general ecological principles.

  20. The evolution of armadillos, anteaters and sloths depicted by nuclear and mitochondrial phylogenies: implications for the status of the enigmatic fossil Eurotamandua.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delsuc, F; Catzeflis, F M; Stanhope, M J; Douzery, E J

    2001-08-07

    The mammalian order Xenarthra (armadillos, anteaters and sloths) is one of the four major clades of placentals, but it remains poorly studied from the molecular phylogenetics perspective. We present here a study encompassing most of the order's diversity in order to establish xenarthrans' intra-ordinal relationships, discuss the evolution of their morphological characters, search for their extant sister group and specify the timing of their radiation with special emphasis on the status of the controversial fossil Eurotamandua. Sequences of three genes (nuclear exon 28 of the Von Willebrand factor and mitochondrial 12S and 16S rRNAs) are compared for eight of the 13 living genera. Phylogenetic analyses confirm the order's monophyly and that of its three major lineages: armadillos (Cingulata), anteaters (Vermilingua) and sloths ('Tardigrada', renamed in 'Folivora'), and our results strongly support the grouping of hairy xenarthrans (anteaters and sloths) into Pilosa. Within placentals, Afrotheria might be the first lineage to branch off, followed by Xenarthra. The morphological adaptative convergence between New World xenarthrans and Old World pangolins is confirmed. Molecular datings place the early emergence of armadillos around the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary, followed by the divergence between anteaters and sloths in the Early Eocene era. These Tertiary dates contradict the concept of a very ancient origin of modern xenarthran lineages. They also question the placement of the purported fossil anteater (Eurotamandua) from the Middle Eocene period of Europe with the Vermilingua and instead suggest the independent and convergent evolution of this enigmatic taxon.

  1. First record of Eremotherium laurillardi (Lund, 1842) (Mammalia, Xenarthra, Megatheriidae) in the Quaternary of Uberaba, Triângulo Mineiro (Minas Gerais State), Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinelli, Agustín G.; Ferraz, Patrícia Fonseca; Cunha, Gabriel Cardoso; Cunha, Isabella Cardoso; de Souza Carvalho, Ismar; Borges Ribeiro, Luiz Carlos; Neto, Francisco Macedo; Cavellani, Camila Lourencini; de Paula Antunes Teixeira, Vicente; da Fonseca Ferraz, Mara Lúcia

    2012-08-01

    Although the occurrence of Pleistocene mammals is abundant in many localities of Minas Gerais State (e.g., Lagoa Santa, Janaúba, Bambuí, Cordisburgo, Patos de Minas, Araxá), there are no references at present of Quaternary megafauna in Uberaba, Triângulo Mineiro, southeastern Brazil. This region is traditionally recognized for its taxonomically diverse fauna of the Late Cretaceous Bauru Group. In 2006, fossil material attributed to giant ground sloth Eremotherium laurillardi (Xenarthra, Megatheriidae), a typical taxon of the Brazilian Pleistocene, was discovered in the Uberaba City (Minas Gerais State). The specimen (CPP 1122) which is here described consists of several cranial and postcranial bones of a single individual. The material was confined to a small alluvial deposit, yielding in the Córrego da Saudade stream, which due its restricted area distribution it is not represented in geological maps.

  2. Nitrogen Isotope Evidence for a Shift in Eastern Beringian Nitrogen Cycle after the Terminal Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tahmasebi, F.; Longstaffe, F. J.; Zazula, G.

    2016-12-01

    The loess deposits of eastern Beringia, a region in North America between 60° and 70°N latitude and bounded by Chukchi Sea to the west and the Mackenzie River to the east, are a magnificent repository of Late Pleistocene megafauna fossils. The stable carbon and nitrogen isotope compositions of these fossils are measured to determine the paleodiet of these animals, and hence the paleoenvironment of this ecosystem during the Quaternary. For this approach to be most successful, however, requires consideration of possible changes in nutrient cycling and hence the carbon and nitrogen isotopic compositions of vegetation in this ecosystem. To test for such a shift following the terminal Pleistocene, we analyzed the stable carbon and nitrogen isotope compositions of modern plants and bone collagen of Arctic ground squirrels from Yukon Territory, and fossil plants and bones recovered from Late Pleistocene fossil Arctic ground squirrel nests. The data for modern samples provided a measure of the isotopic fractionation between ground squirrel bone collagen and their diet. The over-wintering isotopic effect of decay on typical forage grasses was also measured to evaluate its role in determining fossil plant isotopic compositions. The grasses showed only a minor change ( 0-1 ‰) in carbon isotope composition, but a major change ( 2-10 ‰) in nitrogen isotope composition over the 317-day experiment. Based on the modern carbon isotope fractionation between ground squirrel bone collagen and their diet, the modern vegetation carbon isotopic baseline provides a suitable proxy for the Late Pleistocene of eastern Beringia, after accounting for the Suess effect. However, the predicted nitrogen isotope composition of vegetation comprising the diet of fossil ground squirrels remains 2.5 ‰ higher than modern grasslands in this area, even after accounting for possible N-15 enrichment during decay. This result suggests a change in N cycling in this region since the Late Pleistocene.

  3. Genetic diversity in different populations of sloths assessed by DNA fingerprinting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MORAES N.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study we analyzed a population of Bradypus torquatus with individuals originally distributed in different localities of Bahia, and two populations of B. variegatus with individuals from Bahia and São Paulo States. Using the DNA fingerprinting method, we assessed the genetic variability within and between populations. Analysis of the DNA profiles revealed genetic similarity indices ranging from 0.34 ± 0.07 to 0.87 ± 0.04. Similar low levels of genetic variability were found only in isolated mammalian populations or among related individuals. This study presents the first analyses of genetic diversity in sloth populations.

  4. Temporal and spatial resource use by female three-toed sloths and their young in an agricultural landscape in Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oscar Ramirez

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The information on ecological behavior of wild sloths is very scarce. In this study we determined the home ranges and resources used by three adult female three-toed sloths (Bradypus variegatus and their four young in an agricultural matrix of cacao (Theobroma cacao, pasture, riparian forests and living fencerows in Costa Rica. Births occurred during November-December and the young became independent at five to seven months of age. Initially, mothers remained fixed in one or a few trees, but expanded their use of resources as young sloths became independent from them. Mothers initially guided the young to preferred food and cover resources, but they gradually left their young in small nucleus areas and colonized new areas for themselves. Home range sizes for young sloths (up to seven months of age varied between 0.04-0.6 hectares, while home range sizes for mothers varied from 0.04-25.0 hectares. During the maternal care period, 22 tree species were used, with the most common being Cecropia obtusifolia (30.9%, Coussapoa villosa (25.6%, Nectandra salicifolia (12.1%, Pterocarpus officinalis (5.8% and Samanea saman (5.4%. However, young sloths used only 20 tree species, with the most common being C. villosa (18.4%, S. saman (18.5 % and N. salicifolia (16.7%. The cacao agroforest was used only by mother sloths and never by their young following separation. However, in the riparian forest, both mother sloths and young used the tree species. A total of 28 tree species were used by the mother sloth; including the food species: C. obtusifolia, C. villosa, N. salicifolia and P. officinalis. However, the young used 18 trees species in this habitat with N. salicifolia and S. saman most commonly used, although they rested and fed during the day in C. obtusifolia, C. villosa and O. sinnuata. The cacao agroforest with adjacent riparian forests and fencerows provides an important habitat type that links the smaller secondary forests and other patches. Rev

  5. Characteristics of human - sloth bear (Melursus ursinus) encounters and the resulting human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor, Madhya Pradesh, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhamorikar, Aniruddha H; Mehta, Prakash; Bargali, Harendra; Gore, Kedar

    2017-01-01

    Sloth bears (Melursus ursinus) caused the highest number of human deaths between 2001 and 2015 and ranked second compared to other wild animals in causing human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor area. We studied the patterns of sloth bear attacks in the region to understand the reasons for conflict. We interviewed 166 victims of sloth bear attacks which occurred between 2004 and 2016 and found that most attacks occurred in forests (81%), with the greatest number of those (42%) occurring during the collection of Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP), 15% during the collection of fuelwood and 13% during grazing of livestock. The remainder took place at forest edges or in agricultural fields (19%), most occurring when person(s) were working in fields (7%), defecating (5%), or engaged in construction work (3%). Most victims were between the ages of 31 to 50 (57%) and most (54%) were members of the Gond tribe. The majority of attacks occurred in summer (40%) followed by monsoon (35%) and winter (25%). Forty-four percent of victims were rescued by people, while 43% of the time bears retreated by themselves. In 60% of attacks, a single bear was involved, whereas 25% involved adult females with dependent cubs and the remainder (15%) of the cases involved a pair of bears. We discuss the compensation program for attack victims as well as other governmental programs which can help reduce conflict. Finally, we recommend short-term mitigation measures for forest-dependent communities.

  6. Characteristics of human - sloth bear (Melursus ursinus encounters and the resulting human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor, Madhya Pradesh, India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aniruddha H Dhamorikar

    Full Text Available Sloth bears (Melursus ursinus caused the highest number of human deaths between 2001 and 2015 and ranked second compared to other wild animals in causing human casualties in the Kanha-Pench corridor area. We studied the patterns of sloth bear attacks in the region to understand the reasons for conflict. We interviewed 166 victims of sloth bear attacks which occurred between 2004 and 2016 and found that most attacks occurred in forests (81%, with the greatest number of those (42% occurring during the collection of Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP, 15% during the collection of fuelwood and 13% during grazing of livestock. The remainder took place at forest edges or in agricultural fields (19%, most occurring when person(s were working in fields (7%, defecating (5%, or engaged in construction work (3%. Most victims were between the ages of 31 to 50 (57% and most (54% were members of the Gond tribe. The majority of attacks occurred in summer (40% followed by monsoon (35% and winter (25%. Forty-four percent of victims were rescued by people, while 43% of the time bears retreated by themselves. In 60% of attacks, a single bear was involved, whereas 25% involved adult females with dependent cubs and the remainder (15% of the cases involved a pair of bears. We discuss the compensation program for attack victims as well as other governmental programs which can help reduce conflict. Finally, we recommend short-term mitigation measures for forest-dependent communities.

  7. A model for the Holocene extinction of the mammal megafauna in Ecuador

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ficcarelli, G.; Coltorti, M.; Moreno-Espinosa, M.; Pieruccini, P. L.; Rook, L.; Torre, D.

    2003-03-01

    This paper presents the results of multidisciplinary research in the Ecuadorian coastal regions, with particular emphasis on the Santa Elena Peninsula. The new evidence, together with previous data gathered on the Ecuadorian cordillera during the last 12 years, allows us to formulate a model that accounts for most of the mammal megafauna extinction at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition. After the illustration of geomorphological and paleontological evidences of the area of the Santa Elena Peninsula (and other sites), and of a summary of the paleoclimatic data, the main results and conclusions of this work are: (1) Late Pleistocene mammal assemblages survived in the Ecuadorian coast until the Early Holocene sea level rise; (2) Prior to the extinction of most of the megafauna elements (mastodons, ground sloths, equids, sabre-tooth felids), the mammal communities at Santa Elena Peninsula comprise elements with differing habitat requirements, attesting conditions of high biological pressure; (3) At the El Cautivo site (Santa Elena Peninsula), we have discovered Holocene sediments containing the first known occurrences in Ecuador of lithic artifacts that are associated with mammal megafauna remains; (4) During the last 10,000 years, the coastal region of Ecuador underwent significant changes in vegetation cover. At the Pleistocene/Holocene transition the climate changed from very arid conditions to humid conditions. Our data indicates that the megafauna definitively abandoned the Cordillera areas around 12,000 yr BP due to t he increasing aridity, and subsequently migrated to coastal areas where ecological conditions still were suitable, Santa Elena Peninsula and mainly Amazonian areas being typical. We conclude that the unusual high faunal concentrations and the change to dense vegetation cover (due to a rapid increase in precipitation in the lower Holocene) at 8000-6000 yr BP, caused the final collapse and extinction of most elements of the mammal megafauna

  8. Reproductive System of Brown-throated Sloth (Bradypus variegatus, Schinz 1825, Pilosa, Xenarthra): Anatomy and Histology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favoretto, S M; daSilva, E G; Menezes, J; Guerra, R R; Campos, D B

    2016-08-01

    In recent years, habitat degradation led to the decline of some populations of brown-throated sloth. The aim of this study was to describe morphological features of the female reproductive system of the species. The oval ovaries were partially surrounded by ovarian bursa. An external cortex and an inner medulla were present. Corpora lutea and corpora albicans together with follicles at various stages of development each with a single oocyte were found in the cortex. Uterine tubes were tortuous, tubular, travelled around the perimeter of the ovary and possessed a folded mucosa with ciliated pseudostratified epithelium. Uterus was simplex, with no horns and divided into three parts: a pear-shaped cranial segment and a long caudal uterine segment (both forming the body of the uterus) and two cervices. Uterus presented three layers: mucosa, lined by pseudostratified epithelium, muscular and serosa. The cervices connected the uterus to the urogenital sinus, a distensible cavity with longitudinal mucosal folds lined by transitional epithelium that extended from the external urethral orifice and the external uterine ostia to the vulva, which was lined by a keratinized stratified squamous epithelium. Brown-throated sloth presented a bipartite clitoris with paired crura, bodies and glandes. The presence of a double cervix and a bipartite clitoris was unique features of the species. © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  9. Social behavior between mothers ´ young of sloths Bradypus variegatus SCHINZ, 1825 (Xenarthra: Bradypodidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SOARES C. A.

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available This study is a contribution to the ex situ and in situ conservation and preservation of Sloths. The behavioral records of the social interaction between mothers and offspring allow the detection of important learning interactions and psychomotor development. The results provide valuable information that may assist in improving management conditions of captive orphan progeny. They also favor a more effective monitoring of released or transferred specimens. Age is of fundamental importance in deciding what is important during the release, transfer, or reintroduction of the species.

  10. Nitrogen isotopes suggest a change in nitrogen dynamics between the Late Pleistocene and modern time in Yukon, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longstaffe, Fred J.; Zazula, Grant

    2018-01-01

    A magnificent repository of Late Pleistocene terrestrial megafauna fossils is contained in ice-rich loess deposits of Alaska and Yukon, collectively eastern Beringia. The stable carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotope compositions of bone collagen from these fossils are routinely used to determine paleodiet and reconstruct the paleoecosystem. This approach requires consideration of changes in C- and N-isotope dynamics over time and their effects on the terrestrial vegetation isotopic baseline. To test for such changes between the Late Pleistocene and modern time, we compared δ13C and δ15N for vegetation and bone collagen and structural carbonate of some modern, Yukon, arctic ground squirrels with vegetation and bones from Late Pleistocene fossil arctic ground squirrel nests preserved in Yukon loess deposits. The isotopic discrimination between arctic ground squirrel bone collagen and their diet was measured using modern samples, as were isotopic changes during plant decomposition; Over-wintering decomposition of typical vegetation following senescence resulted in a minor change (~0–1 ‰) in δ13C of modern Yukon grasses. A major change (~2–10 ‰) in δ15N was measured for decomposing Yukon grasses thinly covered by loess. As expected, the collagen-diet C-isotope discrimination measured for modern samples confirms that modern vegetation δ13C is a suitable proxy for the Late Pleistocene vegetation in Yukon Territory, after correction for the Suess effect. The N-isotope composition of vegetation from the fossil arctic ground squirrel nests, however, is determined to be ~2.8 ‰ higher than modern grasslands in the region, after correction for decomposition effects. This result suggests a change in N dynamics in this region between the Late Pleistocene and modern time. PMID:29447202

  11. Circadian rhythms in blood pressure in free-ranging three-toed sloths (Bradypus variegatus

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    Duarte D.P.F.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Blood pressure (BP profiles were monitored in nine free-ranging sloths (Bradypus variegatus by coupling one common carotid artery to a BP telemetry transmitter. Animals moved freely in an isolated and temperature-controlled room (24ºC with 12/12-h artificial light-dark cycles and behaviors were observed during resting, eating and moving. Systolic (SBP and diastolic (DBP blood pressures were sampled for 1 min every 15 min for 24 h. BP rhythm over 24 h was analyzed by the cosinor method and the mesor, amplitude, acrophase and percent rhythm were calculated. A total of 764 measurements were made in the light cycle and 721 in the dark cycle. Twenty-four-hour values (mean ± SD were obtained for SBP (121 ± 22 mmHg, DBP (86 ± 17 mmHg, mean BP (MBP, 98 ± 18 mmHg and heart rate (73 ± 16 bpm. The SBP, DBP and MBP were significantly higher (unpaired Student t-test during the light period (125 ± 21, 88 ± 15 and 100 ± 17 mmHg, respectively than during the dark period (120 ± 21, 85 ± 17 and 97 ± 17 mmHg, respectively and the acrophase occurred between 16:00 and 17:45 h. This circadian variation is similar to that observed in cats, dogs and marmosets. The BP decreased during "behavioral sleep" (MBP down from 110 ± 19 to 90 ± 19 mmHg at 21:00 to 8:00 h. Both feeding and moving induced an increase in MBP (96 ± 17 to 119 ± 17 mmHg at 17:00 h and 97 ± 19 to 105 ± 12 mmHg at 15:00 h, respectively. The results show that conscious sloths present biphasic circadian fluctuations in BP levels, which are higher during the light period and are mainly synchronized with feeding.

  12. PLEISTOCENE-HOLOCENE PALAEOENVIRONMENTAL RECORDS FROM PERMAFROST SEQUENCES AT THE KARA SEA COAST (NW SIBERIA, RUSSIA

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    Irina Streletskaya

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The Kara Sea coasts were studied using comprehensive stratigraphic and geocryological methods. The paper presents the new analytical studies of ground ice and Quaternary deposits of Western Taymyr and presents the results of spore and pollen, foraminifera, grain-size, mineralogical, geochemical, oxygen isotopic, and other analyses. Several stratigraphic-geocryological transects from Yenisey and Gydan Bays enable us to refine the stratigraphy and palaeogeographical reconstruction of the environments and freezing of Late Pleistocene-Holocene sediments. Marine sedimentation conditions during the late Kargino time (MIS3 changed to continental conditions in MIS2 and MIS1. Marine sediments were frozen syn- and epigenetically with cryotexture and ground ice formation. Ice wedges formation corresponds to the end of the Pleistocene (MIS2 and during cooler periods of the Holocene.

  13. Hydrology of the alluvial, buried channel, basal Pleistocene and Dakota aquifers in west-central Iowa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runkle, D.L.

    1985-01-01

    A ground-water resources investigation in west-central Iowa indicates that water is available from alluvial, buried channel, basal Pleistocene, and Dakota aquifers. The west-central Iowa area includes Audubon, Carrol1, Crawford, Greene, Guthrie, Harrison, Monona, and Shelby Counties.

  14. Tanque Loma, a new late-Pleistocene megafaunal tar seep locality from southwest Ecuador

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindsey, Emily L.; Lopez R., Eric X.

    2015-01-01

    Fossil deposits in the petroleum-rich sediments of the Santa Elena Peninsula in southwestern Ecuador contain some of the largest and best-preserved assemblages of Pleistocene megafaunal remains known from the neotropics, and thus represent an opportunity to greatly expand our knowledge of Pleistocene paleoecology and the extinction of Quaternary megafauna in this region. This paper reports data from excavations at Tanque Loma, a late-Pleistocene locality on the Santa Elena Peninsula that preserves a dense assemblage of megafaunal remains in hydrocarbon-saturated sediments along with microfaunal and paleobotanical material. The megafauna bones are concentrated in and just above a ˜0.5 m thick asphaltic layer, but occur sparsely and with poorer preservation up to 1 m above this deposit. Several meters of presumed-Holocene sediments overlying the megafauna-bearing strata are rich in bones of microvertebrates including birds, squamates, and rodents. These are interpreted as raptor assemblages. While over 1000 megafaunal bones have been identified from the Pleistocene strata at Tanque Loma, more than 85% of these remains pertain to a single species, the giant ground sloth Eremotherium laurillardi. Only five other megafauna taxa have been identified from this site, including Glossotherium cf. tropicorum, Holmesina occidentalis, cf. Notiomastodon platensis, Equus (Amerhippus) c.f. santaeelenae, and a cervid tentatively assigned to cf. Odocoileus salinae based on body size and geography. No carnivores have yet been identified from Tanque Loma, and microvertebrate remains are extremely rare in the Pleistocene deposits, although terrestrial snail shells and fragmented remains of marine invertebrates are occasionally encountered. Accelerator Mass Spectrometry radiocarbon dates on Eremotherium and cf. Notiomaston bones from within and just above the asphaltic layer yielded dates of ˜17,000 - 23,500 radiocarbon years BP. Taken together, the taxonomic composition, taphonomy

  15. The evolution of armadillos, anteaters and sloths depicted by nuclear and mitochondrial phylogenies: implications for the status of the enigmatic fossil Eurotamandua.

    OpenAIRE

    Delsuc , Frédéric; Catzeflis , François ,; Stanhope , Michael ,; Douzery , Emmanuel ,

    2001-01-01

    The mammalian order Xenarthra (armadillos, anteaters and sloths) is one of the four major clades of placentals, but it remains poorly studied from the molecular phylogenetics perspective. We present here a study encompassing most of the order's diversity in order to establish xenarthrans' intra-ordinal relationships, discuss the evolution of their morphological characters, search for their extant sister group and specify the timing of their radiation with special emphasis on the status of the...

  16. 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.

  17. Evolution, Systematics, and Phylogeography of Pleistocene Horses in the New World: A Molecular Perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weinstock, Jaco; Willerslev, Eske; Sher, A.

    2005-01-01

    . Furthermore, we show that stilt-legged horses, commonly regarded as Old World migrants related to the hemionid asses of Asia, were in fact an endemic North American lineage. Finally, our data suggest that there were fewer horse species in late Pleistocene North America than have been named on morphological...... grounds. Both caballine and stilt-legged lineages may each have comprised a single, wide-ranging species....

  18. Pleistocene Paleoart of Australia

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    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.

  19. Isotopic composition on ground ice in Western Yamal (Marre-Sale

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    I. D. Streletskaya

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The profile of Quaternary sediments near Marre-Salle polar station, Western Yamal Peninsula, has large bodies of tabular ground ice. This profile is considered strata-typical and critical in understanding of paleogeographic conditions of the Arctic in Pleistocene-Holocene. However, interpretation of the profile is under discussion. It consists of two distinct strata: upper layer of 10–15 m thick represented by continental sediments and lower one with a thickness of more than 100 m represented by marine sediments. Lower layer of saline marine clays has lenses of tabular ground ice (more than 20 m thick, the bases of which are below the sea level. Upper continental layer is characterized by syngenetic ice-wedges of different generations. Samples were collected from ice-wedges and tabular ground ice for chemical and isotope analysis. The results of the analysis allow to reconstruct paleogeographic conditions of the sedimentation and freezing of Quaternary sediments. Heavy stable isotope content and relationship between oxygen and hydrogen isotopes show that the ice bodies in the lower layer were formed in-situ within the ground. In the upper layer, heavier isotope content found in younger ice-wedges relative to the old-generation wedges. Formation of massive syngenetic Upper-Pleistocene ice-wedges occurred in conditions of colder winter temperatures than at present. Syngenetic Holocene wedges were formed after Holocene Optimum under winter conditions similar to present. Younger ice wedges formed smaller polygons, were smaller and often were developing in the locations of the degraded old wedges. Results of the isotope analysis of various types of ground ice near Marre-Sale allow reconstructing changes of marine sedimentation to continental one around Kargino time (MIS 3 and changes in climatic conditions in Arctic in Late Pleistocene and Holocene.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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).

  8. The Snowmastodon Project: A view of the Last Interglacial Period from high in the Colorado Rockies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pigati, Jeffery S.

    2015-01-01

    In North America, terrestrial records of biodiversity and climate change that span the Last Interglacial Period [or Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5] are rare. In 2010-11, construction at Ziegler Reservoir near Snowmass Village, Colorado revealed a lacustrine/wetland sedimentary sequence that preserved evidence of past plant communities between ~140 and 55 ka, including all of MIS 5. At an elevation of 2705 m, the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site (ZRFS) also contained thousands of well-preserved bones and teeth of Pleistocene megafauna, including mastodons, mammoths, ground sloths, horses, camels, deer, bison, black bear, coyotes, and bighorn sheep. In addition, the site contained more than 26,000 bones from at least 30 species of small animals, including salamanders, otters, muskrats, minks, rabbits, beavers, frogs, lizards, snakes, fish, and birds. The combination of macro- and micro-vertebrates, invertebrates, terrestrial and aquatic plant macrofossils, a detailed pollen record, and a robust, directly dated stratigraphic framework, shows that high-elevation ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado are climatically sensitive and varied dramatically throughout MIS 5.

  9. 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 ...

  10. 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.

  11. Middle Pleistocene protein sequences from the rhinoceros genus Stephanorhinus and the phylogeny of extant and extinct Middle/Late Pleistocene Rhinocerotidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welker, Frido; Smith, Geoff M; Hutson, Jarod M; Kindler, Lutz; Garcia-Moreno, Alejandro; Villaluenga, Aritza; Turner, Elaine; Gaudzinski-Windheuser, Sabine

    2017-01-01

    Ancient protein sequences are increasingly used to elucidate the phylogenetic relationships between extinct and extant mammalian taxa. Here, we apply these recent developments to Middle Pleistocene bone specimens of the rhinoceros genus Stephanorhinus . No biomolecular sequence data is currently available for this genus, leaving phylogenetic hypotheses on its evolutionary relationships to extant and extinct rhinoceroses untested. Furthermore, recent phylogenies based on Rhinocerotidae (partial or complete) mitochondrial DNA sequences differ in the placement of the Sumatran rhinoceros ( Dicerorhinus sumatrensis ). Therefore, studies utilising ancient protein sequences from Middle Pleistocene contexts have the potential to provide further insights into the phylogenetic relationships between extant and extinct species, including Stephanorhinus and Dicerorhinus . ZooMS screening (zooarchaeology by mass spectrometry) was performed on several Late and Middle Pleistocene specimens from the genus Stephanorhinus , subsequently followed by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to obtain ancient protein sequences from a Middle Pleistocene Stephanorhinus specimen. We performed parallel analysis on a Late Pleistocene woolly rhinoceros specimen and extant species of rhinoceroses, resulting in the availability of protein sequence data for five extant species and two extinct genera. Phylogenetic analysis additionally included all extant Perissodactyla genera ( Equus , Tapirus ), and was conducted using Bayesian (MrBayes) and maximum-likelihood (RAxML) methods. Various ancient proteins were identified in both the Middle and Late Pleistocene rhinoceros samples. Protein degradation and proteome complexity are consistent with an endogenous origin of the identified proteins. Phylogenetic analysis of informative proteins resolved the Perissodactyla phylogeny in agreement with previous studies in regards to the placement of the families Equidae, Tapiridae, and

  12. Middle and Late Pleistocene glaciations in the southwestern Pamir and their effects on topography [Topography of the SW Pamir shaped by middle-late Pleistocene glaciation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stübner, Konstanze; Grin, Elena; Hidy, Alan J.; Schaller, Mirjam; Gold, Ryan D.

    2017-01-01

    Glacial chronologies provide insight into the evolution of paleo-landscapes, paleoclimate, topography, and the erosion processes that shape mountain ranges. In the Pamir of Central Asia, glacial morphologies and deposits indicate extensive past glaciations, whose timing and extent remain poorly constrained. Geomorphic data and 15 new "1"0Be exposure ages from moraine boulders and roches moutonnées in the southwestern Pamir document multiple Pleistocene glacial stages. The oldest exposure ages, View the MathML source113 ± 10ka, underestimate the age of the earliest preserved glacial advance and imply that the modern relief of the southwestern Pamir (peaks at ~5000–6000 m a.s.l.; valleys at ~2000–3000 m a.s.l.) already existed in the late Middle Pleistocene. Younger exposure ages (~40–80 ka, ~30 ka) complement the existing Central Asian glacial chronology and reflect successively less extensive Late Pleistocene glaciations. The topography of the Pamir and the glacial chronologies suggest that, in the Middle Pleistocene, an ice cap or ice field occupied the eastern Pamir high-altitude plateau, whereas westward flowing valley glaciers incised the southwestern Pamir. Since the Late Pleistocene deglaciation, the rivers of the southwestern Pamir adjusted to the glacially shaped landscape. As a result, localized rapid fluvial incision and drainage network reorganization reflect the transient nature of the deglaciated landscape.

  13. Evolution, systematics, and phylogeography of pleistocene horses in the new world: a molecular perspective.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2005-08-01

    Full Text Available The rich fossil record of horses has made them a classic example of evolutionary processes. However, while the overall picture of equid evolution is well known, the details are surprisingly poorly understood, especially for the later Pliocene and Pleistocene, c. 3 million to 0.01 million years (Ma ago, and nowhere more so than in the Americas. There is no consensus on the number of equid species or even the number of lineages that existed in these continents. Likewise, the origin of the endemic South American genus Hippidion is unresolved, as is the phylogenetic position of the "stilt-legged" horses of North America. Using ancient DNA sequences, we show that, in contrast to current models based on morphology and a recent genetic study, Hippidion was phylogenetically close to the caballine (true horses, with origins considerably more recent than the currently accepted date of c. 10 Ma. Furthermore, we show that stilt-legged horses, commonly regarded as Old World migrants related to the hemionid asses of Asia, were in fact an endemic North American lineage. Finally, our data suggest that there were fewer horse species in late Pleistocene North America than have been named on morphological grounds. Both caballine and stilt-legged lineages may each have comprised a single, wide-ranging species.

  14. Evolution, systematics, and phylogeography of pleistocene horses in the new world: a molecular perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstock, Jaco; Willerslev, Eske; Sher, Andrei; Tong, Wenfei; Ho, Simon Y W; Rubenstein, Dan; Storer, John; Burns, James; Martin, Larry; Bravi, Claudio; Prieto, Alfredo; Froese, Duane; Scott, Eric; Xulong, Lai; Cooper, Alan

    2005-08-01

    The rich fossil record of horses has made them a classic example of evolutionary processes. However, while the overall picture of equid evolution is well known, the details are surprisingly poorly understood, especially for the later Pliocene and Pleistocene, c. 3 million to 0.01 million years (Ma) ago, and nowhere more so than in the Americas. There is no consensus on the number of equid species or even the number of lineages that existed in these continents. Likewise, the origin of the endemic South American genus Hippidion is unresolved, as is the phylogenetic position of the "stilt-legged" horses of North America. Using ancient DNA sequences, we show that, in contrast to current models based on morphology and a recent genetic study, Hippidion was phylogenetically close to the caballine (true) horses, with origins considerably more recent than the currently accepted date of c. 10 Ma. Furthermore, we show that stilt-legged horses, commonly regarded as Old World migrants related to the hemionid asses of Asia, were in fact an endemic North American lineage. Finally, our data suggest that there were fewer horse species in late Pleistocene North America than have been named on morphological grounds. Both caballine and stilt-legged lineages may each have comprised a single, wide-ranging species.

  15. Significance of Two New Pleistocene Plant Records from Western Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, Michael H.; Velichkevich, Felix Y.; Andrieu-Ponel, Valerie; Woltz, Phillipe

    2000-09-01

    The first records of extinct Caulinia goretskyi (Dorofeev) Dorofeev (synonym Najas goretskyi Dorofeev) in western Europe and of Potamogeton occidentalis M.H. Field sp. nov. were obtained from plant macrofossil analyses of Middle Pleistocene temperate stage deposits exposed at Trez Rouz, Brittany, France. Palynological assemblages recovered suggest correlation with the Holsteinian Stage. This discovery greatly expands the western limit of the paleogeographical distribution of Caulinia goretskyi. The record of Potamogeton occidentalis indicates an affinity with the eastern Asiatic flora, as the fruits resemble those of the extant Potamogeton maackianus A. Bennett. Other extinct Pleistocene species related to P. maackianus have been described, and it is possible to follow the development of this group through the Pleistocene in the European fossil record. These new finds illustrate the importance of a complete paleobotanical approach (both plant macrofossil and palynological analyses). The plant macrofossil assemblages not only provide detailed insight into local vegetation and environment, because they are often not transported long distances (in temperate areas) and can frequently be identified to species level; they can also offer the opportunity to investigate Pleistocene evolutionary trends.

  16. Plio-Pleistocene aardvarks (Mammalia, Tubulidentata from East Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Lehmann

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available The Tubulidentata are unique among mammals for being the only order represented nowadays by a single living species, Orycteropus afer: the aardvark. Nevertheless, it is one of the least studied mammalian orders. Aardvarks are currently distributed all over sub-Saharan Africa, but the fossil record extends their spatial range to Europe and Asia. The earliest known Tubulidentata are ca. 20 million years old. About 14 species and three to four genera have been recognised so far, but since the late Pliocene, aardvarks have only been represented by a single genus and are restricted to Africa. The extant aardvark is the only species of Tubulidentata with a large distribution area, i.e. the African continent. There are three known Plio-Pleistocene African species of aardvark: Orycteropus afer (Pallas, 1766, O. crassidens MacInnes, 1956, and O. djourabensis Lehmann et al., 2004. Fossils of these species have been discovered in North-Africa, Kenya, and Chad respectively. The present study is focused on the aardvark material found in the Plio-Pleistocene of East Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya. New specimens from Asa Issie (Ethiopia and East Turkana (Kenya are described, and published ones are re-examined in the light of the latest discoveries. This study demonstrates that Kenyan specimens identified as O. crassidens are in fact representatives of the Chadian O. djourabensis. Moreover, additional material from Ethiopia and Kenya shows a close relationship with the latter species too. The presence of specimens of O. djourabensis in Chad and in Kenya during the Plio-Pleistocene implies that this taxon is the oldest-known species of aardvark to have experienced a continental dispersal. It also shows that Tubulidentates were able to cross Africa from east-west during Plio-Pleistocene times, despite the presence of the Rift Valley. It is however not possible to infer the centre of origin of O. djourabensis. Finally, this study suggests that two species of aardvark

  17. 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...

  18. Sedimentology and Ground-Penetrating Radar Characteristics of a Pleistocene Sandur Deposit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Henrik; Andreasen, Frank Erik

    1995-01-01

    -upward lithology, terminating with a jökulhlaup episode characterized by large compound dune migration and slack-water draping. Mapping of a more than 200 m long well exposed pitwall and ground-penetrating radar measurements in a 50 × 200 m grid along the pitwall made it possible to outline the three...

  19. 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'

    Science.gov (United States)

    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'.

  20. THE MOLLUSCAN FAUNA FROM THE UPPER PLEISTOCENE VERTEBRATE-BEARING DEPOSITS OF S. TEODORO CAVE (NORTH-EASTERN SICILY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DANIELA ESU

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with terrestrial, freshwater and marine molluscs collected in the upper Pleistocene deposits of clay, sands and gravels of S. Teodoro Cave (North-eastern Sicily. Beginning from 1998 two trenches have been excavated (1998 and 2002-2004. A highly diversified assemblage of endemic and not endemic vertebrates (elephant, horse, wild ox, deer, wild boar, hyaena, fox, mouse, ground vole, shrew, hedgehog, bats, birds, reptiles, invertebrates (molluscs and vegetal remains have been collected from the two trenches. The molluscan fauna is represented by poor to rich-species assemblages of land and freshwater gastropods and bivalves with Mediterranean-European character. Some species have been found for the first time as fossils in Sicily. The land snails prevail in the 1998 trench showing a persistent arid environment during the time of the sediment deposition. The freshwater species, characteristic of slow-running water, point to the presence of a small water body (stream or spring inside the cave, probably more consistent in the 2002-2004 trench where this fauna prevails. The dispersal of the molluscan fauna of S. Teodoro Cave from the mainland during the low stand sea-level phases of the upper Pleistocene probably belongs to the same dispersal events following the Oxygen Isotope Stage 5e which introduced into the island not endemic faunal elements which are associated with endemic faunal elements in S. Teodoro Cave. Littoral marine reworked molluscs found in the cave deposits probably come from the sedimentary cover of a middle Pleistocene terrace which overlies the roof of the cave. SHORT NOTE

  1. 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.

  2. Summary of the Snowmastodon Project Special Volume. A high-elevation, multi-proxy biotic and environmental record of MIS 6-4 from the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site, Snowmass Village, Colorado, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Ian M.; Pigati, Jeffrey S.; Scott Anderson, R.; Johnson, Kirk R.; Mahan, Shannon A.; Ager, Thomas A.; Baker, Richard G.; Blaauw, Maarten; Bright, Jordon; Brown, Peter M.; Bryant, Bruce; Calamari, Zachary T.; Carrara, Paul E.; Cherney, Michael D.; Demboski, John R.; Elias, Scott A.; Fisher, Daniel C.; Gray, Harrison J.; Haskett, Danielle R.; Honke, Jeffrey S.; Jackson, Stephen T.; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; Kline, Douglas; Leonard, Eric M.; Lifton, Nathaniel A.; Lucking, Carol; Gregory McDonald, H.; Miller, Dane M.; Muhs, Daniel R.; Nash, Stephen E.; Newton, Cody; Paces, James B.; Petrie, Lesley; Plummer, Mitchell A.; Porinchu, David F.; Rountrey, Adam N.; Scott, Eric; Sertich, Joseph J. W.; Sharpe, Saxon E.; Skipp, Gary L.; Strickland, Laura E.; Stucky, Richard K.; Thompson, Robert S.; Wilson, Jim

    2014-11-01

    In North America, terrestrial records of biodiversity and climate change that span Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 are rare. Where found, they provide insight into how the coupling of the ocean-atmosphere system is manifested in biotic and environmental records and how the biosphere responds to climate change. In 2010-2011, construction at Ziegler Reservoir near Snowmass Village, Colorado (USA) revealed a nearly continuous, lacustrine/wetland sedimentary sequence that preserved evidence of past plant communities between ~ 140 and 55 ka, including all of MIS 5. At an elevation of 2705 m, the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site also contained thousands of well-preserved bones of late Pleistocene megafauna, including mastodons, mammoths, ground sloths, horses, camels, deer, bison, black bear, coyotes, and bighorn sheep. In addition, the site contained more than 26,000 bones from at least 30 species of small animals including salamanders, otters, muskrats, minks, rabbits, beavers, frogs, lizards, snakes, fish, and birds. The combination of macro- and micro-vertebrates, invertebrates, terrestrial and aquatic plant macrofossils, a detailed pollen record, and a robust, directly dated stratigraphic framework shows that high-elevation ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado are climatically sensitive and varied dramatically throughout MIS 5.

  3. A high-elevation, multi-proxy biotic and environmental record of MIS 6-4 from the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site, Snowmass Village, Colorado, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Ian M.; Pigati, Jeffrey S.; Anderson, R. Scott; Johnson, Kirk R.; Mahan, Shannon; Ager, Thomas A.; Baker, Richard G.; Blaauw, Maarten; Bright, Jordon; Brown, Peter M.; Bryant, Bruce; Calamari, Zachary T.; Carrara, Paul E.; Michael D., Cherney; Demboski, John R.; Elias, Scott A.; Fisher, Daniel C.; Gray, Harrison J.; Haskett, Danielle R.; Honke, Jeffrey S.; Jackson, Stephen T.; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; Kline, Douglas; Leonard, Eric M.; Lifton, Nathaniel A.; Lucking, Carol; McDonald, H. Gregory; Miller, Dane M.; Muhs, Daniel R.; Nash, Stephen E.; Newton, Cody; Paces, James B.; Petrie, Lesley; Plummer, Mitchell A.; Porinchu, David F.; Rountrey, Adam N.; Scott, Eric; Sertich, Joseph J. W.; Sharpe, Saxon E.; Skipp, Gary L.; Strickland, Laura E.; Stucky, Richard K.; Thompson, Robert S.; Wilson, Jim

    2014-01-01

    In North America, terrestrial records of biodiversity and climate change that span Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 are rare. Where found, they provide insight into how the coupling of the ocean–atmosphere system is manifested in biotic and environmental records and how the biosphere responds to climate change. In 2010–2011, construction at Ziegler Reservoir near Snowmass Village, Colorado (USA) revealed a nearly continuous, lacustrine/wetland sedimentary sequence that preserved evidence of past plant communities between ~ 140 and 55 ka, including all of MIS 5. At an elevation of 2705 m, the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site also contained thousands of well-preserved bones of late Pleistocene megafauna, including mastodons, mammoths, ground sloths, horses, camels, deer, bison, black bear, coyotes, and bighorn sheep. In addition, the site contained more than 26,000 bones from at least 30 species of small animals including salamanders, otters, muskrats, minks, rabbits, beavers, frogs, lizards, snakes, fish, and birds. The combination of macro- and micro-vertebrates, invertebrates, terrestrial and aquatic plant macrofossils, a detailed pollen record, and a robust, directly dated stratigraphic framework shows that high-elevation ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado are climatically sensitive and varied dramatically throughout MIS 5.

  4. A high-elevation, multi-proxy biotic and environmental record of MIS 6–4 from the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site, Snowmass Village, Colorado, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ian M. Miller; Mitchell A. Plummer; Various Others

    2014-10-01

    In North America, terrestrial records of biodiversity and climate change that span Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 are rare. Where found, they provide insight into how the coupling of the ocean–atmosphere system is manifested in biotic and environmental records and how the biosphere responds to climate change. In 2010–2011, construction at Ziegler Reservoir near Snowmass Village, Colorado (USA) revealed a nearly continuous, lacustrine/wetland sedimentary sequence that preserved evidence of past plant communities between ~140 and 55 ka, including all of MIS 5. At an elevation of 2705 m, the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site also contained thousands of well-preserved bones of late Pleistocene megafauna, including mastodons, mammoths, ground sloths, horses, camels, deer, bison, black bear, coyotes, and bighorn sheep. In addition, the site contained more than 26,000 bones from at least 30 species of small animals including salamanders, otters, muskrats, minks, rabbits, beavers, frogs, lizards, snakes, fish, and birds. The combination of macro- and micro-vertebrates, invertebrates, terrestrial and aquatic plant macrofossils, a detailed pollen record, and a robust, directly dated stratigraphic framework shows that high-elevation ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado are climatically sensitive and varied dramatically throughout MIS 5

  5. Environmental Impact Statement for Proposed Closure of Los Angeles Air Force Base, California and Relocation of Space Systems Division

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-05-01

    1. The slender- horned spine flower is a federally-listed endangered species. Because of the highly disturbed nature of the proposed sites, none of...deposit include deer, antelope, gazelle, horse, pig, camel, elephant, rhinoceros, hippopotamus, rabbit, beaver, mole, shrew, ground sloth, hedgehog

  6. Extinction of Harrington's mountain goat

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mead, J.I.; Martin, P.S.; Euler, R.C.; Long, A.; Jull, A.J.T.; Toolin, L.J.; Donahue, D.J.; Linick, T.W.

    1986-01-01

    Keratinous horn sheaths of the extinct Harrington's mountain goat, Oreamnos harringtoni, were recovered at or near the surface of dry caves of the Grand Canyon, Arizona. Twenty-three separate specimens from two caves were dated nondestructively by the tandem accelerator mass spectrometer (TAMS). Both the TAMS and the conventional dates indicate that Harrington's mountain goat occupied the Grand Canyon for at least 19,000 years prior to becoming extinct by 11,160 +/- 125 radiocarbon years before present. The youngest average radiocarbon dates on Shasta ground sloths, Nothrotheriops shastensis, from the region are not significantly younger than those on extinct mountain goats. Rather than sequential extinction with Harrington's mountain goat disappearing from the Grand Canyon before the ground sloths, as one might predict in view of evidence of climatic warming at the time, the losses were concurrent. Both extinctions coincide with the regional arrival of Clovis hunters

  7. High-latitude steppe vegetation and the mineral nutrition of Pleistocene herbivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davydov, S. P.; Davydova, A.; Makarevich, R.; Loranty, M. M.; Boeskorov, G.

    2014-12-01

    High-latitude steppes were widespread and zonal in the Late Pleistocene and formed a landscape basis for the Mammoth Biome. Now the patches of these steppes survived on steep slopes under southern aspects. These steppes serve as unique information sources about the Late Pleistocene "Mammoth" steppe. Numerous data obtained by palynological, carpological, and DNA analysis of plant remains from feces and stomach contents of Pleistocene herbivore mummies, as well as from buried soils and enclosing deposits show that they are similar to modern steppe plant assemblage in taxa composition. Plant's nutrient concentrations are of fundamental importance across Pleistocene grass-rich ecosystems because of their role in the support of large herbivores. The average weight of an adult mammoth skeleton (about 0.5 tons) and of a woolly rhinoceros (about 0.2 tons) clearly suggests this. Detailed studies on fossil bone remains showed mineral deficiency in large Pleistocene herbivores. A three-year study of ash and mineral contents of two types of relict steppe vegetation at the Kolyma Lowland, Arctic Siberia has been carried out. Nowadays refugia of similar vegetation are located not far (1 - 15km) from the Yedoma permafrost outcrops were abundant fossil remains are found. Dominant species of the steppe vegetation were sampled. Preliminary studies indicate that the ash-content varied 1.5-2 times in speceies of steppe herbs. The Ca, P, Mg, K element contents was higher for most steppe species than in the local herbaceous vegetation, especially in Ca and P. One of the most important elements of the mineral nutrition, the phosphorus, was always found in higher concentrations in the steppe vegetation than in plants of recently dominant landscapes of the study area. It should be noted that the mineral nutrient content of the modern steppe vegetation of Siberian Arctic is comparable to that of the recent zonal steppe of Transbaikal Region. This study supports the hypothesis that

  8. Assessment of geomorphological and hydrological changes produced by Pleistocene glaciations in a Patagonian basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scordo, Facundo; Seitz, Carina; Melo, Walter D.; Piccolo, M. Cintia; Perillo, Gerardo M. E.

    2018-04-01

    This work aims to assess how Pleistocene glaciations modeled the landscape in the upper Senguer River basin and its relationship to current watershed features (drainage surface and fluvial hydrological regime). During the Pleistocene six glacial lobes developed in the upper basin of the Senguer River localized east of the Andean range in southern Argentinean Patagonia between 43° 36' - 46° 27‧ S. To describe the topography and hydrology, map the geomorphology, and propose an evolution of the study area during the Pleistocene we employed multitemporal Landsat images, national geological sheets and a mosaic of the digital elevation model (Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) along with fieldwork. The main conclusion is that until the Middle Pleistocene, the drainage divide of the Senguer River basin was located to the west of its current limits and its rivers drained the meltwater of the glaciers during interglacial periods. However, processes of drainage inversion and drainage surface reduction occurred in the headwater of most rivers of the basin during the Late Pleistocene. Those processes were favored by a relative shorter glacial extension during LGM and the dam effect produced by the moraines of the Post GPG I and III glaciations. Thus, since the Late Pleistocene, the headwaters of several rivers in the basin have been reduced, and the moraines corresponding to the Middle Pleistocene glaciations currently divide the watersheds that drain towards the Senguer River from those that flow west towards the Pacific Ocean.

  9. Late Middle Pleistocene hominin teeth from Panxian Dadong, South China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wu; Schepartz, Lynne A; Xing, Song; Miller-Antonio, Sari; Wu, Xiujie; Trinkaus, Erik; Martinón-Torres, María

    2013-05-01

    The hominin teeth and evidence of hominin activities recovered from 1991 to 2005 at the Panxian Dadong site in South China are dated to the late Middle Pleistocene (MIS 8-6 or ca. 130-300 ka), a period for which very little is known about the morphology of Asian populations. The present study provides the first detailed morphometric description and comparisons of four hominin teeth (I(1), C1, P(3) and P3) from this site. Our study shows that the Panxian Dadong teeth combine archaic and derived features that align them with Middle and Upper Pleistocene fossils from East and West Asia and Europe. These teeth do not display any typical Neanderthal features and they are generally more derived than other contemporaneous populations from Asia and Africa. However, the derived traits are not diagnostic enough to specifically link the Panxian Dadong teeth to Homo sapiens, a common problem when analyzing the Middle Pleistocene dental record from Africa and Asia. These findings are contextualized in the discussion of the evolutionary course of Asian Middle Pleistocene hominins, and they highlight the necessity of incorporating the Asian fossil record in the still open debate about the origin of H. sapiens. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. 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.

  11. 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. 

  12. Late Pleistocene fishes of the Tennessee River Basin: an analysis of a late Pleistocene freshwater fish fauna from Bell Cave (site ACb-2) in Colbert County, Alabama, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacquemin, Stephen J; Ebersole, Jun A; Dickinson, William C; Ciampaglio, Charles N

    2016-01-01

    The Tennessee River Basin is considered one of the most important regions for freshwater biodiversity anywhere on the globe. The Tennessee River Basin currently includes populations of at least half of the described contemporary diversity of extant North American freshwater fishes, crayfish, mussel, and gastropod species. However, comparatively little is known about the biodiversity of this basin from the Pleistocene Epoch, particularly the late Pleistocene (∼10,000 to 30,000 years B.P.) leading to modern Holocene fish diversity patterns. The objective of this study was to describe the fish assemblages of the Tennessee River Basin from the late Pleistocene using a series of faunas from locales throughout the basin documented from published literature, unpublished reports, and an undocumented fauna from Bell Cave (site ACb-2, Colbert County, AL). Herein we discuss 41 unequivocal taxa from 10 late Pleistocene localities within the basin and include a systematic discussion of 11 families, 19 genera, and 24 identifiable species (28 unequivocal taxa) specific to the Bell Cave locality. Among the described fauna are several extirpated (e.g., Northern Pike Esox lucius, Northern Madtom Noturus stigmosus) and a single extinct (Harelip Sucker Moxostoma lacerum) taxa that suggest a combination of late Pleistocene displacement events coupled with more recent changes in habitat that have resulted in modern basin diversity patterns. The Bell Cave locality represents one of the most intact Pleistocene freshwater fish deposits anywhere in North America. Significant preservational, taphonomic, sampling, and identification biases preclude the identification of additional taxa. Overall, this study provides a detailed look into paleo-river ecology, as well as freshwater fish diversity and distribution leading up to the contemporary biodiversity patterns of the Tennessee River Basin and Mississippi River Basin as a whole.

  13. Late Pleistocene fishes of the Tennessee River Basin: an analysis of a late Pleistocene freshwater fish fauna from Bell Cave (site ACb-2 in Colbert County, Alabama, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J. Jacquemin

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The Tennessee River Basin is considered one of the most important regions for freshwater biodiversity anywhere on the globe. The Tennessee River Basin currently includes populations of at least half of the described contemporary diversity of extant North American freshwater fishes, crayfish, mussel, and gastropod species. However, comparatively little is known about the biodiversity of this basin from the Pleistocene Epoch, particularly the late Pleistocene (∼10,000 to 30,000 years B.P. leading to modern Holocene fish diversity patterns. The objective of this study was to describe the fish assemblages of the Tennessee River Basin from the late Pleistocene using a series of faunas from locales throughout the basin documented from published literature, unpublished reports, and an undocumented fauna from Bell Cave (site ACb-2, Colbert County, AL. Herein we discuss 41 unequivocal taxa from 10 late Pleistocene localities within the basin and include a systematic discussion of 11 families, 19 genera, and 24 identifiable species (28 unequivocal taxa specific to the Bell Cave locality. Among the described fauna are several extirpated (e.g., Northern Pike Esox lucius, Northern Madtom Noturus stigmosus and a single extinct (Harelip Sucker Moxostoma lacerum taxa that suggest a combination of late Pleistocene displacement events coupled with more recent changes in habitat that have resulted in modern basin diversity patterns. The Bell Cave locality represents one of the most intact Pleistocene freshwater fish deposits anywhere in North America. Significant preservational, taphonomic, sampling, and identification biases preclude the identification of additional taxa. Overall, this study provides a detailed look into paleo-river ecology, as well as freshwater fish diversity and distribution leading up to the contemporary biodiversity patterns of the Tennessee River Basin and Mississippi River Basin as a whole.

  14. Salt water and its relation to fresh ground water in Harris County, Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Allen G.; Doyel, William Watson; Wood, L.A.

    1957-01-01

    Harris County, in the West Gulf Coastal Plain in southeastern Texas, has one of the heaviest concentrations of ground-water withdrawal in the United States. Large quantities of water are pumped to meet the requirements of the rapidly growing population, for industry, and for rice irrigation. The water is pumped from artesian wells which tap a thick series of sands ranging in age from Miocene (?) to Pleistocene.

  15. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  17. 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...

  18. Patterns of myoxid evolution in the Pliocene and Pleistocene of Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Nadachoswki

    1995-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The origin of recent species belonging to the genera Myoxus, Muscardinus, Glirulus, Eliomys, Dryomys and Myomimus is discussed. Evolution of myoxids in the Pliocene and Pleistocene is expressed by gradual size increase of their cheek teeth. No gradual change in the dental pattern is observed. Riassunto Modelli di evoluzione dei Mioxidi nel Pliocene e Pleistocene in Europa - Viene discussa l'origine delle specie recenti appartenenti ai generi Myoxus, Muscardinus, Glirulus, Eliomys, Dryomys e Myomimus. L'evoluzione dei Mioxidi nel Pliocene e nel Pleistocene è espressa da un graduale aumento delle dimensioni dei molari. Non è stato osservato alcun cambiamento graduale nel pattern dentale.

  19. The late Middle Pleistocene hominin fossil record of eastern Asia: synthesis and review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  4. Late Pleistocene fishes of the Tennessee River Basin: an analysis of a late Pleistocene freshwater fish fauna from Bell Cave (site ACb-2) in Colbert County, Alabama, USA

    OpenAIRE

    Stephen J. Jacquemin; Jun A. Ebersole; William C. Dickinson; Charles N. Ciampaglio

    2016-01-01

    The Tennessee River Basin is considered one of the most important regions for freshwater biodiversity anywhere on the globe. The Tennessee River Basin currently includes populations of at least half of the described contemporary diversity of extant North American freshwater fishes, crayfish, mussel, and gastropod species. However, comparatively little is known about the biodiversity of this basin from the Pleistocene Epoch, particularly the late Pleistocene (?10,000 to 30,000 years B.P.) lead...

  5. Cardiovascular responses to locomotor activity and feeding in unrestrained three-toed sloths, Bradypus variegatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D.P.F. Duarte

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Heart rate (HR and systolic (SBP, diastolic (DBP and mean (MBP blood pressure were recorded by biotelemetry in nine conscious unrestrained sloths for 1 min every 15 min over a 24-h period. The animals were allowed to freely move in an acoustically isolated and temperature-controlled (24 ± 1ºC experimental room with light-dark cycle (12/12 h. Behavior was closely monitored through a unidirectional visor and classified as resting (sitting or suspended, feeding (chewing and swallowing embauba leaves, Cecropia adenops, or locomotor activity around the tree trunk or on the room floor. Locomotor activity caused statistically significant increases in SBP (+8%, from 121 ± 22 to 131 ± 18 mmHg, DBP (+7%, from 86 ± 17 to 92 ± 10 mmHg, MBP (+8%, from 97 ± 19 to 105 ± 12 mmHg, and HR (+14%, from 84 ± 15 to 96 ± 15 bpm compared to resting values, indicating a possible major influence of the autonomic nervous system on the modulation of cardiac function during this behavior. During feeding, the increase in blood pressure was even higher (SBP +27%, from 119 ± 21 to 151 ± 21 mmHg; DBP +21%, from 85 ± 16 to 103 ± 15 mmHg; MBP +24%, from 96 ± 17 to 119 ± 17 mmHg, while HR remained at 14% (from 84 ± 15 to 96 ± 10 bpm above resting values. The proportionally greater increase in blood pressure than in HR during feeding suggests an increase in peripheral vascular resistance as part of the overall response to this behavior.

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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

  8. 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...

  9. 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 ...

  10. 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...

  11. The temporal bones from Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain). A phylogenetic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, I; Arsuaga, J L

    1997-01-01

    Three well-preserved crania and 22 temporal bones were recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site up to and including the 1994 field season. This is the largest sample of hominid temporal bones known from a single Middle Pleistocene site and it offers the chance to characterize the temporal bone morphology of an European Middle Pleistocene population and to study the phylogenetic relationships of the SH sample with other Upper and Middle Pleistocene hominids. We have carried out a cladistic analysis based on nine traits commonly used in phylogenetic analysis of Middle and Late Pleistocene hominids: shape of the temporal squama superior border, articular eminence morphology, contribution of the sphenoid bone to the median glenoid wall, postglenoid process projection, tympanic plate orientation, presence of the styloid process, mastoid process projection, digastric groove morphology and anterior mastoid tubercle. We have found two autapomorphies on the Home erectus temporal bone: strong reduction of the postglenoid process and absence of the styloid process. Modern humans, Neandertals and the Middle Pleistocene fossils from Europe and Africa constitute a clade characterized by a convex superior border of the temporal squama. The European Middle Pleistocene fossils from Sima de los Huesos, Petralona, Steinheim, Bilzingsleben and Castel di Guido share a Neandertal apomorphy: a relatively flat articular eminence. The fossils from Ehringsdorf, La Chaise Suardi and Biache-Saint-Vaast also display another Neandertal derived trait: an anteriorly obliterated digastric groove. Modern humans and the African Middle Pleistocene fossils share a synapomorphy: a sagittally orientated tympanic plate.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Early Pleistocene occurrence of Acheulian technology in North China

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. Is the modern koala ( Phascolarctos cinereus) a derived dwarf of a Pleistocene giant? Implications for testing megafauna extinction hypotheses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Gilbert J.

    2008-12-01

    The modern Australian koala ( Phascolarctos cinereus) is commonly regarded as a dwarf descendent of a Late Pleistocene giant koala ( Ph. stirtoni). The implication of that hypothesis is that the giant koala survived the Late Pleistocene megafaunal extinction "event", albeit as a smaller body-sized form. It is important to be able to constrain rates of Late Pleistocene faunal turnover, an aspect reliant on having accurate taxonomic information of extinct species. The koala dwarfing hypothesis is tested here by using a temporally-constrained biogeographical record of fossil koalas, and a morphological character analysis. The contemporary occurrence of both taxa in pre-Late Pleistocene deposits and significant differences in dental morphologies between those forms suggests that the modern koala is not a derived dwarf of the Pleistocene giant koala. Thus, the giant-form was among a number of other giant mammals, lizards and birds that suffered extinction sometime during the Late Pleistocene. The potential phenomenon of dwarfing of other Late Pleistocene and Recent faunas, such as grey kangaroos, is commonly used as a test for or against various megafaunal extinction hypotheses. However, the results of this study also demonstrate that the dwarfing hypothesis has not been adequately tested for a suite of other taxa. Thus, until the dwarfing hypothesis can be more fully tested, a clear understanding of the fate of Late Pleistocene faunas that apparently survived the extinction "event", and the origins of many extant forms will remain elusive.

  16. Rodent burrows in late Pleistocene paleosols at Korean Palaeolithic sites and their implications for paleoclimate changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, H.; Park, S.; Lee, J.; Lee, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Rodent burrows are commonly found at many Paleolithic archaeological sites in Korea. They are nearly straight in horizontal view and gently inclined in lateral view. Burrow diameters are mostly 7 - 10cm, and burrow length may reach a few meters. Vertical penetration depths are generally about 1 m from the surface, and the thickness of the burrow-bearing layer is about 1-2 m. Although no remains (bones, teeth, claws, and coprolites) were found within burrows, they are interpreted to have been produced by rodent-like mammals (probably ground squirrels) based on the size and architecture. According to the previous study, the age of these burrows was constrained to be between ca. 40,000 and 25,000 yr BP by tephrochronology, radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating results (Lim et al., 2007). However, little is known about the reason why these burrows have disappeared after late Pleistocene time. For this question, two explanations can be considered: extinction or migration. Since same kinds of burrows are still found in the high-latitude regions, such as Mongolia and North America, the possibility of extinction can be ruled out. Therefore, migration seems to be the most likely explanation. Our results show that the destruction of habitat caused by climate change during this period is the main reason for the northward migration of burrowing animals. This study suggests that rodent burrows found in the late Pleistocene paleosols can provide useful information on paleoclimate and paleoenvironmental changes.

  17. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

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    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. 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. 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.

  1. The snout of Paulocnus petrifactus (Mammalia, Edentata)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hooijer, D.A.

    1964-01-01

    A specimen of the ground sloth discovered by Mr. P. Stuiver in Curaçao, Paulocnus petrifactus Hooijer (1962), recently dressed from the matrix by Mr. P. H. de Buisonjé, comprises the front part of the mandible and the left half of the rostrum of the skull. It holds the left upper and right lower

  2. 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.

  3. Drainage system inversion in the Guadalentin Depression during the Late Pleistocene-Holocene (Murcia, Spain)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Calmel-Avila, M.; Silva, P. G.; Bardaji, T.; Goy, J. L.; Zazo, C.

    2009-07-01

    This article presents the results of studies conducted in the central sector of Guadalentin depression (Murcia) for the abnormal accumulation (more than 17 m) of Pleistocene and Holocene deposits upstream of Romeral tectonic threshold (Librilla). {sup 1}4C dating. ruins and archaeological sites, together with its stratigraphic analysis show that the three sequences that constitute the Holocene detrital filling of the Depression, prograded are superimposed on the upper Pleistocene travertine upstream from the confluence of the River Guadalentin the Rambla de Librilla. Between Librilla and threshold Romeral Holocene deposits only appear along the left bank (15-17m). By contrast the right side shows significant lifting of the Pleistocene travertine up area Romeral threshold, where the substrate allora Neogene. (Author) 11 refs.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Ancient divergence time estimates in Eutropis rugifera support the existence of Pleistocene barriers on the exposed Sunda Shelf

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Pattern of dental development in Hominid XVIII from the Middle Pleistocene Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos site (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermudez De Castro, J M; Rosas, A

    2001-04-01

    . We describe the pattern of dental development of Hominid XVIII from the Middle Pleistocene Sima de los Huesos (SH) site of the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos, Spain). As expected, this pattern is similar to that of modern humans. A delay of development of the lower and upper canines was observed. In contrast, the relative advanced development of the lower second molars and, especially, the upper and lower third molars is noteworthy. This latter feature seems to be common in Pleistocene hominids, and suggests that the pattern of dental development evolved in the genus Homo during the Pleistocene. In European Middle Pleistocene hominids, this pattern probably was facilitated by the extra space available in the mandible and maxilla for developing teeth. Copyright 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  10. In situ study of the effect of ground source heat pump on shallow ground-water quality in the late Pleistocene terrace area of Tokyo, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemura, T.; Uemura, K.; Akiba, Y.; Ota, M.

    2015-12-01

    The implementation of ground source heat pump (GSHP) systems has rapidly increased around the world, since they reduce carbon dioxide emissions and save electric energy. The GSHP system transfer heat into the geosphere zone when air conditioners are used to cool rooms or buildings. However, the effects of temperature increase on the quality of underground water has yet to be fully investigated. In order to reduce the risks of ground-water pollution by the installed GSHPs, it is important to evaluate the effect of temperature change on the ground-water quality. In this study, we installed a closed loop GSHP system on a heat exchange well along with a monitoring well drilled to measure ground-water quality and temperature. The monitoring well was drilled at 0.1cm away from the heat exchange well. We observed that changes of temperature in the heat exchange well affected the water quality, especially turbidity, in gravelly layer.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Ground ice as indicator of the Pleistocene history of the Russian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. A. Shpolyanskaya

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the analysis of massive ground ice origin, the geological development of the Russian Arctic in the Quaternary period has been considered. A classification of massive ice with two new genetic types (submarine and coastal-marine and new mechanism of their formation have been proposed by the author. The possibility of permafrost formation with massive ice directly in marine environments has been calculated. Significant differences in the geological development of western and eastern Arctic, particularly in the transgressive-regressive mode, have been revealed. This calls into question the leading role of glacial eustatic processes in sea level fluctuations and brings to the fore the role of tectonic processes.

  14. Late Pleistocene paleohydrology near the boundary of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts, southeastern Arizona, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pigati, Jeffery S.; Bright, Jordon E.; Shanahan, Timothy M.; Mahan, Shannon

    2009-01-01

    Ground-water discharge (GWD) deposits form in arid environments as water tables rise and approach or breach the ground surface during periods of enhanced effective precipitation. Where preserved, these deposits contain information on the timing and elevation of past ground-water fluctuations. Here we report on the investigation of a series of GWD deposits that are exposed in discontinuous outcrops along a ???150-km stretch of the San Pedro Valley in southeastern Arizona, near the boundary of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts. Chronologic, isotopic, geochemical, faunal assemblage (ostracodes and gastropods), and sedimentological evidence collectively suggest that the elevation of the regional water table in the valley rose in response to a change in climate ???50 ka ago and remained relatively high for the next ???35 ka before falling during the B??lling-Aller??d warm period, rebounding briefly during the Younger Dryas cold event, and falling again at the onset of the Holocene. The timing of these hydrologic changes coincides closely with variations in ??18O values of calcite from a nearby speleothem to the west and changes in lake levels at pluvial Lake Cochise to the east. Thus, in southeastern Arizona, the assumption that changes in climate are reflected in all aspects of the hydrologic cycle of a region simultaneously is validated. The timing of these changes also broadly coincides with variations in the GISP2 ??18O record, which supports the hypothesis that atmospheric teleconnections existed between the North Atlantic and the deserts of the American Southwest during the late Pleistocene.

  15. Paleohydrology and paleoenvironments at Bir Sahara: Pleistocene lithostratigraphy and sedimentology in the southern Egyptian Sahara

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Christopher L.; Schild, Romuald

    2017-12-01

    The Bir Sahara area contains a remarkable record of Middle and Late Pleistocene hydrologic and environmental conditions for Saharan North Africa, based on lithostratigraphic and sedimentologic evidence from basin-fill deposits. Some of the deposits contain Lower Paleolithic (Acheulean) or Middle Paleolithic artifacts that help to constrain their age, since Acheulian artifacts are assigned to the Middle Pleistocene, while Middle Paleolithic artifacts are limited to either the Middle or Late Pleistocene. Locality BS-14 is in the southern part of Bir Sahara, while localities E-88-15, E-88-2, BS-13, and BS-16 are situated in the south-central part of the deflational basin, closer to the present-day water-hole. Lowered groundwater conditions during arid intervals resulted in erosional topographic basins. These deflational basins were later filled with sediments associated with wetter hydrologic conditions. The oldest studied sedimentary sequence in the Bir Sahara depression (BS-14) contains in situ Acheulian artifacts. Acheulian handaxes are found in sands underlying carbonates that are interpreted as evidence of spring-fed pond and marsh environments during a Middle Pleistocene wet interval. At the E-88-15 locality, the stratigraphic sequence documents deposition in a possible perennial pond or small lake that varied in extent and depth and is associated with Middle Paleolithic artifacts. At E-88-12 and BS-13, lateral and vertical variations in the lithofacies of the basin-fill sediments provide additional records of changing hydrologic conditions during the Late Pleistocene. These hydrologic conditions appear to reflect variations in water-table levels related to groundwater recharge and, at times, local rains.

  16. Geology and ground water in the Platte-Republican Rivers watershed and the Little Blue River basin above Angus, Nebraska, with a section on chemical quality of the ground water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, C.R.; Brennan, Robert

    1960-01-01

    This report describes an area of about 7,300 square miles in south-central Nebraska. Approximately one-fourth of the area, largely at its east end, consists of an undissected southeastward-sloping upland plain and is almost wholly irrigable; the remainder is in various stages of dissection and only parts of it are suitable for irrigation. Although some of the deeper lying bedrock formations are potential sources of water supply, they are not likely to be tapped in the near future because abundant supplies are available at shallower depth from semiconsolidated and unconsolidated deposits. The Ogallala formation of Tertiary (Pliocene) age consists of gravel, sand, silt, and volcanic ash, some layers of which are partly cemented. It was deposited by eastward-flowing streams, which formed a constructional plain above a surface into which the streams had previously eroded broad valleys. In turn, valleys were cut into the surface of the Ogallala before the overlying deposits of gravel, sand, silt, and clay of Quaternary (Pleistocene) age were laid down, also forming a constructional plain. During Recent time, streams have dissected the older deposits and have deposited thin alluvium in their valleys; also, several parts of the area have become mantled by wind-deposited sand. Because during Tertiary and Quaternary time the area repeatedly was the site of deposition and erosion, the thickness of all the stratigraphic units differs markedly from place to place. In general, however, the Ogallala formation thins eastward and in the central and eastern parts of the area is overlain by the eastward-thickening deposits of Pleistocene age. The maximum thickness of the Ogallala formation is about 500 feet, and the maximum thickness of the Pleistocene deposits is a little more than 300 feet. Each thins to a featheredge and is completely absent in parts of the area. The water-bearing part of the combined Tertiary and Pleistocene deposits is considered to be a single zone of

  17. PLIO-PLEISTOCENE FOSSIL VERTEBRATES OF MONTE TUTTAVISTA (OROSEI, EASTERN SARDINIA, ITALY, AN OVERVIEW

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. The role of ice sheets in the pleistocene climate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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

  19. Pleistocene aridification cycles shaped the contemporary genetic architecture of Southern African baboons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Late Pleistocene and Holocene landscape formation in a gully catchment area in Northern Hesse, Germany

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Döhler, Susanne; Damm, Bodo; Terhorst, Birgit

    2015-01-01

    the differentiation between Pleistocene and Holocene landforms. Radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating are applied to add numerical data to the relative ages of the sediments and landforms. The gully channels are oriented along Pleistocene depressions that are built up of periglacial cover beds...... and intercalated reworked loess. As the gully channels cut through the periglacial cover beds, especially the upper layer, the gully system is of Holocene age. At least two phases of gully erosion are identified in the alluvial fan sediments. The initial gully erosion is dated to the time span between the Late......Permanent gully channels under forest are common geomorphological features in Central European low mountain areas. In the Rehgraben/Fuchslöchergraben gully catchment in Northern Hesse, Germany the Late Pleistocene landscape formation is reconstructed based on periglacial cover beds. In addition...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  4. A new fossil peccary from the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary of the eastern Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stinnesbeck, Sarah R.; Frey, Eberhard; Stinnesbeck, Wolfgang; Avíles Olguín, Jeronimo; Zell, Patrick; Terrazas Mata, Alejandro; Benavente Sanvicente, Martha; González González, Arturo; Rojas Sandoval, Carmen; Acevez Nuñez, Eugenio

    2017-08-01

    Here we describe the left mandibular ramus of a fossil peccary from the submerged karst cave system in the southeastern Mexican state of Quintana Roo. The specimen, which was discovered in the Muknal cave northwest of Tulúm, is a new genus and species of peccary termed Muknalia minima. The taxon likely dates from the latest Pleistocene and differs significantly from all extant peccaries and their Pleistocene relatives by a concave notch at the caudal edge of the mandibular ramus and prominent ventrally directed angular process. These diagnostic osteological differences suggest that the masticatory apparatus differed from all other peccaries, which may hint to an ecological isolation on the late Pleistocene Yucatán Peninsula.

  5. 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...

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Paleomagnetism and geochronology of the Pliocene-Pleistocene lavas in Iceland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McDougall, Ian; Wensink, H.

    Potassium-argon dates are reported on five basalt samples from the Pliocene-Pleistocene sequence of lavas in the Jökuldalur area, northeastern Iceland. These dates confirm the correlations previously made with the geological time scale by means of paleomagnetic stratigraphy. The R1 and N2 polarity

  10. Complete mitochondrial genome and phylogeny of Pleistocene mammoth Mammuthus primigenius.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evgeny I Rogaev

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Phylogenetic relationships between the extinct woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius, and the Asian (Elephas maximus and African savanna (Loxodonta africana elephants remain unresolved. Here, we report the sequence of the complete mitochondrial genome (16,842 base pairs of a woolly mammoth extracted from permafrost-preserved remains from the Pleistocene epoch--the oldest mitochondrial genome sequence determined to date. We demonstrate that well-preserved mitochondrial genome fragments, as long as approximately 1,600-1700 base pairs, can be retrieved from pre-Holocene remains of an extinct species. Phylogenetic reconstruction of the Elephantinae clade suggests that M. primigenius and E. maximus are sister species that diverged soon after their common ancestor split from the L. africana lineage. Low nucleotide diversity found between independently determined mitochondrial genomic sequences of woolly mammoths separated geographically and in time suggests that north-eastern Siberia was occupied by a relatively homogeneous population of M. primigenius throughout the late Pleistocene.

  11. Geology and ground-water resources of Goshen County, Wyoming; Chemical quality of the ground water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, J.R.; Visher, F.N.; Littleton, R.T.; Durum, W.H.

    1957-01-01

    siltstone, ranges in thickness from a knife edge to about 450 feet and yields water to domestic and stock wells from fractures and from lenses of sandstone. The Arikaree formation ranges in thickness from a knife edge to about 1,000 feet, and yields water to several domestic and stock wells in the northwestern part of the area. The Pliocene channel deposits, which probably do not exceed 25 feet in thickness, are not a source of water for wells in Goshen County. The upland deposits, which are mainly of Pleistocene age, generally are dry and do not serve as aquifers; however, test drilling revealed several deep, buried channels occupied by deposits which probably would yield moderate quantities of water to wells if a sufficient saturated thickness were penetrate The deposits of the third terrace, which are of Pleistocene age, range in thickness from a knife edge to about 210 feet and yield water to a large number of irrigation wells in the area. The flood-plain deposits, which are of Pleistocene and Recent age, range in thickness from a knife edge to about 200 feet. Those in the valley of the North Platte River yield abundant water to many large supply wells. The flood-plain deposits along the valley of Rawhide Creek consist mainly of fine-grained materials and yield large supplies of water to well only in the lower stretches of the creek valley near its confluence with the valley of the North Platte River. The deposits along the valleys of Horse and Bear Creeks generally are relatively thin and fine grained. In the vicinity of Ls grange, however, the deposits, which are about 45 feet thick, yield moderate, supplies of water to several irrigation wells. Other Recent deposits in the area--dune sand, loesslike deposits, and slope wash--generally are fine grained and relatively thin and, hence, are not important sources of ground water. The unconsolidated sand and gravel of the flood-plain and terrace deposits are the principal aquifers in the area. In some places

  12. Paleoescatology in the sopas formation (Upper Pleistocene) form Uruguay, paleobilogic focus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verde, M.; Ubilla, M.; Soloviy, J.

    1998-01-01

    Continental tetrapod coprolites are reported for the first time for Uruguay, these remains come from the Sopas Formation (Upper Pleistocene). They are assigned to carnivore mammals based on morphology and inclusions of micrommmal remains besides of other attributes.(author)

  13. True single-molecule DNA sequencing of a pleistocene horse bone

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orlando, Ludovic Antoine Alexandre; Ginolhac, Aurélien; Raghavan, Maanasa

    2011-01-01

    -preserved Pleistocene horse bone using the Helicos HeliScope and Illumina GAIIx platforms, respectively. We find that the percentage of endogenous DNA sequences derived from the horse is higher among the Helicos data than Illumina data. This result indicates that the molecular biology tools used to generate sequencing...

  14. Vertebrates from the Middle Pleistocene locality Lysa Gora 1 in Ukraine

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rekovets, L.; Čermák, Stanislav; Kovalchuk, O.; Prisyazhniuk, V.; Nowakowski, D.

    326/327, 1 April (2014), s. 481-491 ISSN 1040-6182 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : Vertebrates * Pleistocene * paleoecology * taxonomy * phylogeny Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 2.062, year: 2014

  15. Attempt at ESR dating of tooth enamel of French middle pleistocene sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bahain, J.J.; Sarcia, M.N.; Falgueres, C.; Yokoyama, Y.

    1993-01-01

    Tooth enamel samples from four important French middle Pleistocene sites are analyzed by the ESR method. ESR ages were calculated using uranium uptake mathematical models and compared with U-series results. (author)

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Mandibular molar root morphology in Neanderthals and Late Pleistocene and recent Homo sapiens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kupczik, Kornelius; Hublin, Jean-Jacques

    2010-11-01

    Neanderthals have a distinctive suite of dental features, including large anterior crown and root dimensions and molars with enlarged pulp cavities. Yet, there is little known about variation in molar root morphology in Neanderthals and other recent and fossil members of Homo. Here, we provide the first comprehensive metric analysis of permanent mandibular molar root morphology in Middle and Late Pleistocene Homo neanderthalensis, and Late Pleistocene (Aterian) and recent Homo sapiens. We specifically address the question of whether root form can be used to distinguish between these groups and assess whether any variation in root form can be related to differences in tooth function. We apply a microtomographic imaging approach to visualise and quantify the external and internal dental morphologies of both isolated molars and molars embedded in the mandible (n=127). Univariate and multivariate analyses reveal both similarities (root length and pulp volume) and differences (occurrence of pyramidal roots and dental tissue volume proportion) in molar root morphology among penecontemporaneous Neanderthals and Aterian H. sapiens. In contrast, the molars of recent H. sapiens are markedly smaller than both Pleistocene H. sapiens and Neanderthals, but share with the former the dentine volume reduction and a smaller root-to-crown volume compared with Neanderthals. Furthermore, we found the first molar to have the largest average root surface area in recent H. sapiens and Neanderthals, although in the latter the difference between M(1) and M(2) is small. In contrast, Aterian H. sapiens root surface areas peak at M(2). Since root surface area is linked to masticatory function, this suggests a distinct occlusal loading regime in Neanderthals compared with both recent and Pleistocene H. sapiens. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Conference on Continental margin mass wasting and Pleistocene sea-level changes, August 13-15, 1980

    Science.gov (United States)

    Folger, David W.; Hathaway, J.C.

    1987-01-01

    A conference on Continental Margin Mass Wasting and Pleistocene Sea-Level Changes was held in Woods Hole, Mass., August 13-15, 1980. Forty-seven participants, representing many government, academic, and industrial organizations, discussed the current state of knowledge of the features of marine mass wasting and of the interrelations of factors influencing them. These factors include sediment source, composition, textures, sedimentation rates, climatic and sea-level changes, gas and gas hydrate (clathrate) contents of sediments, geotechnical characteristics, oceanographic and morphological factors, ground-water processes, and seismic events. The part played by these factors in the processes and features of mass movement and the engineering considerations imposed by the emplacement of manmade structures on the sea floor were considered vital to the evaluation of hazards involved in offshore exploration and development. The conference concluded with a call for bold programs to establish the probability of occurrence and the quantitative importance of these factors and to devise more reliable means of measurement, particularly in place, of the characteristics of the sediment and features involved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. Dating of ground water: an evaluation of its use in the assessment of HLW repositories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Davis, S.N.; Bentley, H.W.; Zito, R.

    1984-01-01

    Dating of ground water is potentially useful in the evaluation of the hydrogeologic hazards associated with proposed repositories for high-level radioactive waste in the following ways: (1) identification of areas of static ground water where regional migration of radionuclides should be minimal; (2) help with the calibration of numerical transport models; (3) estimation of water velocities; (4) help with the prediction of future natural changes in the chemistry of ground water; and (5) help with the interpretation of the Pleistocene history of a region which will have a bearing on the development of hazards not related directly to ground water. Methods judged to be most useful for dating water are hydrodynamic calculations, the use of atmospherically derived radionuclides, and the measurement of the accumulated products of the decay of certain radionuclides. Thus far, the most useful atmospherically derived radionuclide is chlorine-36 with a half-life of about 3 x 10 5 years. Iodine-129, with a half-life of 1.6 x 10 7 years, is potentially useful in dating and tracing some waters older than 5 x 10 6 years. Further study is needed, however

  2. 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. 

  3. 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

  4. Forests of the tropical eastern Andean flank during the middle Pleistocene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cárdenas, M.L.; Gosling, W.D.; Pennington, R.T.; Poole, I.; Sherlock, S.C.; Mothes, P.

    2014-01-01

    Inter-bedded volcanic and organic sediments from Erazo (Ecuador) indicate the presence of four different forest assemblages on the eastern Andean flank during the middle Pleistocene. Radiometric dates (40Ar-39Ar) obtained from the volcanic ash indicate that deposition occurred between 620,000 and

  5. Terminal Pleistocene Alaskan genome reveals first founding population of Native Americans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moreno-Mayar, J Víctor; Potter, Ben A; Vinner, Lasse

    2017-01-01

    Despite broad agreement that the Americas were initially populated via Beringia, the land bridge that connected far northeast Asia with northwestern North America during the Pleistocene epoch, when and how the peopling of the Americas occurred remains unresolved. Analyses of human remains from La...

  6. Signatures of Late Pleistocene fluvial incision in an Alpine landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Fox, Matthew; Moore, Jeffrey R.

    2018-02-01

    Uncertainty regarding the relative efficacy of fluvial and glacial erosion has hindered attempts to quantitatively analyse the Pleistocene evolution of alpine landscapes. Here we show that the morphology of major tributaries of the Rhone River, Switzerland, is consistent with that predicted for a landscape shaped primarily by multiple phases of fluvial incision following a period of intense glacial erosion after the mid-Pleistocene transition (∼0.7 Ma). This is despite major ice sheets reoccupying the region during cold intervals since the mid-Pleistocene. We use high-resolution LiDAR data to identify a series of convex reaches within the long-profiles of 18 tributary channels. We propose these reaches represent knickpoints, which developed as regional uplift raised tributary bedrock channels above the local fluvial baselevel during glacial intervals, and migrated upstream as the fluvial system was re-established during interglacial periods. Using a combination of integral long-profile analysis and stream-power modelling, we find that the locations of ∼80% of knickpoints in our study region are consistent with that predicted for a fluvial origin, while the mean residual error over ∼100 km of modelled channels is just 26.3 m. Breaks in cross-valley profiles project toward the elevation of former end-of-interglacial channel elevations, supporting our model results. Calculated long-term uplift rates are within ∼15% of present-day measurements, while modelled rates of bedrock incision range from ∼1 mm/yr for low gradient reaches between knickpoints to ∼6-10 mm/yr close to retreating knickpoints, typical of observed rates in alpine settings. Together, our results reveal approximately 800 m of regional uplift, river incision, and hillslope erosion in the lower half of each tributary catchment since 0.7 Ma.

  7. Human talus bones from the Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pablos, Adrián; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Gracia, Ana; Sala, Nohemi; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2013-07-01

    Here we present and describe comparatively 25 talus bones from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain). These tali belong to 14 individuals (11 adult and three immature). Although variation among Middle and Late Pleistocene tali tends to be subtle, this study has identified unique morphological characteristics of the SH tali. They are vertically shorter than those of Late Pleistocene Homo sapiens, and show a shorter head and a broader lateral malleolar facet than all of the samples. Moreover, a few shared characters with Neanderthals are consistent with the hypothesis that the SH population and Neanderthals are sister groups. These shared characters are a broad lateral malleolar facet, a trochlear height intermediate between modern humans and Late Pleistocene H. sapiens, and a short middle calcaneal facet. It has been possible to propose sex assignment for the SH tali based on their size. Stature estimates based on these fossils give a mean stature of 174.4 cm for males and 161.9 cm for females, similar to that obtained based on the long bones from this same site. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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...

  12. A critical evaluation of the evidence for multiple Late Pleistocene eruptions of Laacher See Volcano

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zernack, Anke Verena; Hoggard, Christian Steven; Sauer, Florian Rudolf

    The c. 12,900 BP Plinian eruption of Laacher See Volcano is one of the largest known volcanic events of the Late Pleistocene in the Northern Hemisphere. It buried proximal areas under tens of meters of pyroclastic flow, surge and fallout deposits and deposited a widespread tephra layer across much...... of dispersal of the products from varying eruptive stages and some sites even report two distinct Laacher See Tephra layers that have been interpreted as evidence of a precursor eruption. In order to assess the potential for multiple Late Pleistocene eruptions of Laacher See Volcano, we have compiled...

  13. Zoogdieren uit de Onderst-Pleistocene kuststreken van Nederland (with English summary)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schreuder, A.

    1949-01-01

    Lower-Villafranchian landmammals lived in the South of the Netherlands when the coastline of the North Sea retired in northern direction during the Plio-Pleistocene transition period. In the province of Zealand their black remains have been fished out of the waters of the Scheldt in the depth of

  14. Phylogeography, hybridization and Pleistocene refugia of the kob antelope (Kobus kob)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lorenzen, Eline Deidre; De Neergaard, Rikke; Arctander, Peter

    2007-01-01

    that the divergent phenotype and life-history adaptations of K. k. leucotis reflect the isolation of kob populations in refugia in west and east Africa during the Pleistocene. Subsequent dispersal has led to secondary contact and hybridization in northern Uganda between lineages, which was supported by high levels...

  15. Pleistocene vertebrates from Celebes : XIV. Additions to the Archidiskodon-Celebochoerus fauna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hooijer, D.A.

    1972-01-01

    A joint Dutch-Indonesian expedition to Celebes in 1970 worked especially in the Beru area whence the first described Pleistocene Celebes vertebrate remains came. In the present contribution I shall describe the most important specimens that have been brought to light. My thanks are due to Mr. R. P.

  16. Trophic interactions between larger crocodylians and giant tortoises on Aldabra Atoll, Western Indian Ocean, during the Late Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheyer, Torsten M; Delfino, Massimo; Klein, Nicole; Bunbury, Nancy; Fleischer-Dogley, Frauke; Hansen, Dennis M

    2018-01-01

    Today, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Aldabra Atoll is home to about 100 000 giant tortoises, Aldabrachelys gigantea , whose fossil record goes back to the Late Pleistocene. New Late Pleistocene fossils (age ca . 90-125 000 years) from the atoll revealed some appendicular bones and numerous shell fragments of giant tortoises and cranial and postcranial elements of crocodylians. Several tortoise bones show circular holes, pits and scratch marks that are interpreted as bite marks of crocodylians. The presence of a Late Pleistocene crocodylian species, Aldabrachampsus dilophus , has been known for some time, but the recently found crocodylian remains presented herein are distinctly larger than those previously described. This indicates the presence of at least some larger crocodylians, either of the same or of a different species, on the atoll. These larger crocodylians, likely the apex predators in the Aldabra ecosystem at the time, were well capable of inflicting damage on even very large giant tortoises. We thus propose an extinct predator-prey interaction between crocodylians and giant tortoises during the Late Pleistocene, when both groups were living sympatrically on Aldabra, and we discuss scenarios for the crocodylians directly attacking the tortoises or scavenging on recently deceased animals.

  17. 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

  18. A Pleistocene coastal alluvial fan complex produced by Middle Pleistocene glacio-fluvial processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamson, Kathryn; Woodward, Jamie; Hughes, Philip; Giglio, Federico; Del Bianco, Fabrizio

    2014-05-01

    A coarse-grained alluvial fan sequence at Lipci, Kotor Bay, in western Montenegro, provides a sedimentary record of meltwater streams draining from the Orjen Massif (1,894 m a.s.l.) to the coastal zone. At Lipci sedimentary evidence and U-series ages have been used alongside offshore bathymetric imagery and seismic profiles to establish the size of the fan and constrain the nature and timing of its formation. Establishing the depositional history of such coastal fans is important for our understanding of cold stage sediment flux from glaciated uplands to the offshore zone, and for exploring the impact of sea level change on fan reworking. There is evidence of at least four phases of Pleistocene glaciation on the Orjen massif, which have been U-series dated and correlated to MIS 12, MIS 6, MIS 5d-2 and the Younger Dryas. A series of meltwater channels delivered large volumes of coarse- and fine-grained limestone sediment from the glaciated uplands into the Bay of Kotor. At the southern margin of the Orjen massif, a series of large (>700 m long) alluvial fans has developed. Some of these extend offshore for up to 600 m. Lipci fan lies downstream of end moraines in the valley immediately above, which were formed by an extensive outlet glacier of the Orjen ice cap during MIS 12. The terrestrial deposits are part of the fan apex (50 m a.s.l.) that lies at the foot of a steep bedrock channel, but the majority of the fan is now more than 25 m below sea level. The terrestrial fan sediments are strongly cemented by multiple generations of calcite precipitates: the oldest U-series ages are infinite indicating that the fan is >350 ka in age. These ages are in agreement with alluvial sedimentary evidence and U-series ages from other fluvial units on Mount Orjen. The terrestrial portion of the Lipci fan surface contains several channels. These are well preserved due to cementation with calcium carbonate. Submarine imagery indicates that the now submerged portion of the fan also

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Effects of Pleistocene sea-level fluctuations on mangrove population dynamics: a lesson from Sonneratia alba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  2. The first finding of Asian black bear (Carnivora, Ursidae, Ursus (Euarctos) thibetanus G. Cuvier, 1823) in the Late Pleistocene of northern Eurasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kosintsev, P A; Tiunov, M P; Gimranov, D O; Panov, V S

    2016-11-01

    An M1 tooth of Asian black bear (Ursus (Euarctos) thibetanus G. Cuvier, 1823) was found in deposits of the Tetyukhinskaya cave (Middle Sikhote-Alin, 44°35'N, 135°36'E). This finding is the first reliable evidence of Asian black bear's presence in Pleistocene of Primorye. Its morphological and morphometric descriptions are given. The period of inhabitation of U. (E.) thibetanus determined based on the radiocarbon date obtained during the study of the tooth, is 39 874 ± 133 BP (NSK-850, UGAMS-21786), which corresponds to the middle of Marine Isotope Stage 3 (MIS 3) of Late Pleistocene. The composition of ancient theriofauna indicates the existence of wide variety of landscapes in Primorye in the middle of Late Pleistocene. A refugium of forest fauna, in which species of taiga, nemoral, and Central Asian mountain-forest theriocomplexes were present, was located in southern Primorye in Late Pleistocene.

  3. Changes of 2H and 18O enrichment of meteoric water and Pleistocene glaciation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harmon, R.S.; Schwarcz, H.P.

    1981-01-01

    Isotopic data on fluid inclusions and host speleothems are presented which support the hypothesis that the deltaD-delta 18 O relationship for modern meteoric waters may have changed during the Pleistocene glacial periods in response to increased ocean surface air humidity. Palaeotemperatures for five areas of east-central North America and Bermuda, calculated assuming the present deltaDdelta 18 O meteoric water relationship for fluid inclusion waters, are observed to be too low during late Pleistocene glacial periods (in some instances falling below O 0 C) while interglacial palaeotemperatures are largely equivalent to those in the areas at present. As speleothem deposition cannot occur at subzero temperatures, a possible solution to this dilemma is a shift in the intercept of the meteoric water relationship. (U.K.)

  4. Cheek tooth morphology and ancient mitochondrial DNA of late Pleistocene horses from the western interior of North America: Implications for the taxonomy of North American Late Pleistocene Equus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina I Barrón-Ortiz

    Full Text Available Horses were a dominant component of North American Pleistocene land mammal communities and their remains are well represented in the fossil record. Despite the abundant material available for study, there is still considerable disagreement over the number of species of Equus that inhabited the different regions of the continent and on their taxonomic nomenclature. In this study, we investigated cheek tooth morphology and ancient mtDNA of late Pleistocene Equus specimens from the Western Interior of North America, with the objective of clarifying the species that lived in this region prior to the end-Pleistocene extinction. Based on the morphological and molecular data analyzed, a caballine (Equus ferus and a non-caballine (E. conversidens species were identified from different localities across most of the Western Interior. A second non-caballine species (E. cedralensis was recognized from southern localities based exclusively on the morphological analyses of the cheek teeth. Notably the separation into caballine and non-caballine species was observed in the Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of ancient mtDNA as well as in the geometric morphometric analyses of the upper and lower premolars. Teeth morphologically identified as E. conversidens that yielded ancient mtDNA fall within the New World stilt-legged clade recognized in previous studies and this is the name we apply to this group. Geographic variation in morphology in the caballine species is indicated by statistically different occlusal enamel patterns in the specimens from Bluefish Caves, Yukon Territory, relative to the specimens from the other geographic regions. Whether this represents ecomorphological variation and/or a certain degree of geographic and genetic isolation of these Arctic populations requires further study.

  5. Preliminary Facies Reconstruction of a Late Pleistocene Cypress Forest Discovered on the Northern Gulf of Mexico Continental Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez Rodriguez, S. M.; Bentley, S. J.; DeLong, K. L.; Xu, K.; Caporaso, A.; Obelcz, J. B.; Harley, G. L.; Reese, C. A.; Truong, J. T.

    2016-12-01

    We are investigating the origin and preservation of an ancient bald cypress forest (Taxodium distichum) discovered on the continental shelf seafloor, offshore of Gulf Shores, Alabama, USA, in 20 m water depth. The forest was likely buried in the late Pleistocene, possibly exhumed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004, and is now exposed as stumps in life position with little evidence of decay before recent marine exposure. Radiocarbon analyses show that the forest age is near (and in some cases beyond) the limits of 14C dating, at least 41-45 ky BP. In August 2015 and July 2016, submersible vibracores (up to 5 m in length) were collected. Ongoing core analyses include: organic content (loss on ignition), granulometry, and core logging using a Geotek Multi Sensor Core Logger to generate imagery, bulk density, and x-ray fluorescence data. To bolster 14C analyses, cores collected in 2016 are presently being dated using optically stimulated luminescence. Local stratigraphy consists of a surface facies of Holocene transgressive sands, underlain by possible estuarine sediments of interbedded sand and mud (potentially Holocene or Pleistocene), overlying a swamp or delta plain facies (likely Pleistocene) containing woody debris and mud. Deeper woody facies are thought to include the soil horizons of the ancient cypress forest. Cores collected in 2016 revealed a Pleistocene paleosol beneath Holocene sands in a nearby trough. Elevation differences between swamp and paleosol horizons will be evaluated from bathymetric and subbottom data, to help characterize the preserved ancient landscape. Initial interpretation based on close proximity of Pleistocene swamp and oxidized paleosol sediments, and regional geomorphic gradients suggest that this relatively diverse assemblage of facies developed up to tens of km from the glacial-age coastline, and relatively rapid burial prevented erosion by coastal processes during the Holocene transgression thus preserving the tree stumps and wood debris.

  6. 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.

  7. Fossils mollusc asemblage found at Zagarzazu, marine Pleistocene, Uruguay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rojas, A. . E mail: alejandra@fcien.edu.uy

    2004-01-01

    There are presented the results of the paleoecological analysis of the mollusc assemblage found at Zagarzazu, Colonia department. The fossils are well preserved, arranged in thin shell-beds with some specimens in life position. The assemblage is indicative of higher temperatures than present, and a strong marine influence. It is important to stress that new thermophilic molluscs for the marine Quaternary were found and that this locality represents a new Pleistocene marine record in Uruguay [es

  8. Macro fossils vegetable in Palmar formation (later pleistocene) in Entre Rios - Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ramos, R.; Brea, M.; Krohling, D.

    2012-01-01

    This work is about the macro fossil knowledge preserved like wood fossils in the El Palmar Formation (Late Pleistocene) from a systematic - anatomical as well as paleoecological and paleoclimate point of view.The paleo Flora comes from various fossil located in the province of Entre Rios - Argentina

  9. Paleocene-Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene sea-level changes as "species pumps" in Southeast Asia: Evidence from Althepus spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fengyuan; Li, Shuqiang

    2018-05-17

    Sea-level change has been viewed as a primary driver in the formation of biodiversity. Early studies confirmed that Plio-Pleistocene sea-level changes led to the isolation and subsequent genetic differentiation of Southeast (SE) Asian organisms over short geological timescales. However, long-time consequences of sea-level fluctuations remain unclear. Herein, we analyze the evolutionary history of Althepus (spiders) whose distribution encompasses Indo-Burma and the Sunda shelf islands to understand how sea-level changes over shallow and deep timescales effected their history. Our integrative analyses, including phylogeny, divergence times, ancestral area reconstruction and diversification dynamics, reveal an intricate pattern of diversification, probably triggered by sea-level fluctuations during the Paleocene-Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene. The timing of one early divergence between the Indo-Burmese and Sundaic species coincides with late Paleocene and early Eocene high global sea levels, which induced the formation of inland seaways in the Thai-Malay Peninsula. Subsequent lowered sea levels could have provided a land bridge for its dispersal colonization across the Isthmus of Kra. Analyses suggest that Plio-Pleistocene sea-level rises contributed to recent divergence of many species. Thus, our findings cannot reject the hypothesis that sea-level changes during the Paleocene-Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene played a major role in generating biodiversity in SE Asia; sea-level changes can act as "species pumps". Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Prey preferences of the jaguar Panthera onca reflect the post-Pleistocene demise of large prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt W Hayward

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Documenting the impacts of the Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions on predator-prey interactions is a challenge because of the incomplete fossil record and depauperate extant community structure. We used a comparative ecological approach to investigate whether the existing prey preference patterns of jaguars Panthera onca were potentially affected by the Pleistocene extinctions in the Americas compared with large felids in Africa and Asia. We reviewed the literature and found 25 studies reporting 3214 jaguar kills recorded throughout the species’ distribution. We found that jaguars significantly preferred capybara Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris and giant anteater Myrmecophaga tridactyla, and avoided agoutis, carnivorans, primates, black-eared opossum Didelphis marsupialis and tapirs. Generalised linear models showed that jaguars select prey primarily based on socio-ecological and behavioural traits (abundance and herd size, rather than morphological characteristics (body size. Nonetheless, their accessible prey weight range was 6-60 kg, preferred prey weight range was 45-85 kg, and mean mass of significantly preferred prey was 32 ± 13 kg leading to a predator to prey body mass ratio of 1:0.53, which is much less than that of other solitary felids. Compared with other large, solitary felids, jaguars have an unusual predator to prey body mass ratio, show limited effect of prey morphology as a driver of prey selection, lack evidence of optimal foraging beyond their preferred prey, and an absence of preferentially hunting on Cetartiodactyla herbivores. These features, coupled with the reduction in jaguar body mass since the Pleistocene, suggest that the loss of larger potential prey items within the preferred and accessible weight ranges at the end-Pleistocene still affects jaguar predatory behaviour. It may be that jaguars survived this mass extinction event by preferentially preying on relatively small species.

  11. The British Lower Palaeolithic of the early Middle Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Late Pleistocene and Holocene mammal extinctions on continental Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. Magnetostratigraphy, paleomagnetic correlation, and deformation of pleistocene deposits in the south central Puget Lowland, Washington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagstrum, J.T.; Booth, D.B.; Troost, K.G.; Blakely, R.J.

    2002-01-01

    Paleomagnetic results from Pleistocene sedimentary deposits in the central Puget Lowland indicate that the region has experienced widespread deformation within the last 780 kyr. Three oriented samples were collected from unaltered fine-grained sediments mostly at sea level to determine the magnetostratigraphy at 83 sites. Of these, 47 have normal, 18 have reversed, and 18 have transitional (8 localities) polarities. Records of reversed- to normal-polarity transitions of the geomagnetic field were found in thick sections of silt near the eastern end of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, and again at Wingehaven Park near the northern tip of Vashon Island. The transitional horizons, probably related to the Bruhnes-Matuyama reversal, apparently fall between previously dated Pleistocene sediments at the Puyallup Valley type section (all reversed-polarity) to the south and the Whidbey Island type section (all normal-polarity) to the north. The samples, in general, are of sufficient quality to record paleosecular variation (PSV) of the geomagnetic field, and a statistical technique is used to correlate horizons with significant agreement in their paleomagnetic directions. Our data are consistent with the broad structures of the Seattle uplift inferred at depth from seismic reflection, gravity, and aeromagnetic profiles, but the magnitude of vertical adjustments is greatly subdued in the Pleistocene deposits.

  15. Frequency of fault occurrence at shallow depths during Plio-Pleistocene and estimation of the incident of new faults

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shiratsuchi, H.; Yoshida, S.

    2009-01-01

    It is required that buried high-level radioactive wastes should not be broken directly by faulting in the future. Although a disposal site will be selected in an area where no active faults are present, the possibility of new fault occurrence in the site has to be evaluated. The probability of new fault occurrence is estimated from the frequency of faults which exist in Pliocene and Pleistocene strata distributed beneath 3 large plains in Japan, where a large number of seismic profiles and borehole data are obtained. Estimation of the frequency of faults having occurred and/or reached at shallow depth during Plio-Pleistocene time. The frequency of fault occurrence was estimated by counting the number of faults that exist in Plio-Pleistocene strata that are widely distributed in large plains in Japan. Three plains, Kanto, Nobi and Osaka Plains are selected for this purpose because highly precise geological profiles, which were prepared from numerous geological drillings and geophysical investigations, are available in them. (authors)

  16. Constraining Middle Pleistocene Glaciations in Birmingham, England; Using Optical Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) Dating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, S. M.; Gibbard, P. L.; Bateman, M. D.; Boreham, S.

    2014-12-01

    Birmingham is built on a complex sequence of Middle Pleistocene sediments, representing at least three lowland glaciations (MIS12, MIS6, and MIS2). British Geological Survey mapping accounts 75% of the land mass as Quaternary deposits; predominantly glacial-sandy tills, glacial-fluvial sands, clays and organic silts and peats. Understanding the age of fluvial-glacial outwash, related to specific glaciations, is critical in establishing a Geochronology of Birmingham. Shotton (1953) found a series of Middle Pleistocene glacial sediments, termed the Wolstonian, intermediate in age between MIS11 and MIS5e Interglacial's. Uncertainty surrounding the relation to East Anglian sequences developed by Rose (1987) implies Birmingham sequences should be referred to MIS12. Despite this, younger Middle Pleistocene glacial sequences occur in Birmingham, yet uncertainty has deepened over our understanding of the complex, inaccessible sediments, especially as deposits have similar extent with MIS2 sequences. Five Optical Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) dates from three sites around Birmingham have been sampled. East of Birmingham, ice advanced from the Irish Sea and later the North East. In Wolston, a sample of outwash sand, associated with the Thurssington Till, is dated. In Meriden, two samples of outwash sands, associated with a distal Oadby Till, are dated. West of Birmingham, ice advanced from the Welsh Ice Sheet. In Seisdon, two samples of an Esker and outwash sand, associated with a Ridgeacre Till, are dated. Correlation of OSL dates provide an important constraint on understanding the history of Birmingham. Using GSI3D modeling to correlate geochronology and sedimentology, the significance of OSL dating can be understood within the complex sequences (and regional stratigraphy), complimented by Cosmogenic and Palynology dates taken in South West and North East. OSL dating on Birmingham's outwash sands, deposited by extensive repeated Middle Pleistocene glaciations, asserts the

  17. Late Pleistocene and Holocene activity of the Atacazo-Ninahuilca Volcanic Complex (Ecuador)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hidalgo, Silvana; Monzier, Michel; Almeida, Eduardo; Chazot, Gilles; Eissen, Jean-Philippe; van der Plicht, Johannes; Hall, Minard L.

    2008-01-01

    The Atacazo-Ninahuilca Volcanic Complex (ANVC) is located in the Western Cordillera of Ecuador, 10 km southwest of Quito. At least six periods of Pleistocene to Holocene activity (N1 to N6) have been preserved in the geologic record as tephra fallouts and pyroclastic flow deposits. New field data,

  18. Earthquake-induced soft-sediment deformation structures in Late Pleistocene lacustrine deposits of Issyk-Kul lake (Kyrgyzstan)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gladkov, A. S.; Lobova, E. U.; Deev, E. V.; Korzhenkov, A. M.; Mazeika, J. V.; Abdieva, S. V.; Rogozhin, E. A.; Rodkin, M. V.; Fortuna, A. B.; Charimov, T. A.; Yudakhin, A. S.

    2016-10-01

    This paper discusses the composition and distribution of soft-sediment deformation structures induced by liquefaction in Late Pleistocene lacustrine terrace deposits on the southern shore of Issyk-Kul Lake in the northern Tien Shan mountains of Kyrgyzstan. The section contains seven deformed beds grouped in two intervals. Five deformed beds in the upper interval contain load structures (load casts and flame structures), convolute lamination, ball-and-pillow structures, folds and slumps. Deformation patterns indicate that a seismic trigger generated a multiple slump on a gentle slope. The dating of overlying subaerial deposits suggests correlation between the deformation features and strong earthquakes in the Late Pleistocene.

  19. Nature of short-period microtremors on the cliff-like ground. part 6; Gakechi kinbo no tanshuki bido. 6

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maiguma, T; Kimura, Y [Waseda University, Tokyo (Japan). School of Science and Engineering; Yasui, [Toda Corp., Tokyo, (Japan)

    1997-10-22

    Short-period microtremors were observed on the cliff-like ground to discuss vibration characteristics of the ground. It is known that damage of an earthquake becomes especially serious in the vicinity of the cliff-like ground with steep slopes. The present investigation has performed observations on short-period microtremors in two cliff-like grounds, one with a height of about 17 m and an inclination angle of about 55 degrees, and another with a height of 11 m and an inclination angle of about 60 degrees. The areas of the investigation are the Musashino tableland of the Pleistocene era covered by the Kanto loam bed, and the Oritate area (a farm land) with the cliff-like ground which has been formed as a result of erosion of a river terrace consisted of a gravel bed. The observation was carried out with nine moving coil type vibration converters having a natural period of one second installed for horizontal movements and seven converters installed for vertical movements. The result of the investigation revealed that, at the Musashino tableland, no noticeable influence of the cliff-like ground was recognized in the short-period microtremors; at the Oritate area, the spectra of the horizontal movements vary largely with vibrating directions; and the cliff effect can be seen in microtremors with frequencies from 5 Hz to 9 Hz. 5 refs., 9 figs.

  20. 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.

  1. Microfaunal evidence of age and depositional environments of the Cerro Prieto section (Plio-Pleistocene), Baja California, Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ingle, J.C. Jr.

    1982-01-01

    Microfossils including benthic and planktic foraminifera, ostracodes, calcareous algae, fish skeletal material, and fragments of pelecypods were found in 14 core samples from depths of 185 to 1952 m in the Cerro Prieto geothermal field, providing evidence of both the age and depositional history of sediments comprising the 3000-m-thick Pliocene and Pleistocene section in this area. Ostracodes of brackish water and marine origin constitute the most common microfossils present in this sequence occurring in 8 samples; in situ littoral and neritic species of benthic foraminifera occur in 5 samples with planktic species present in 2 samples. Distributional patterns of ostracodes and foraminifera together with previously analyzed lithofacies (Lyons and van de Kamp, 1980) indicate that the Cerro Prieto section represents an intertonguing complex of alluvial, deltaic, estuarine, and shallow marine environments deposited along the front of the Colorado River delta as it prograded across the Salton Trough during Pliocene and Pleistocene time. Foraminiferal evidence indicates that a sand and shale unit commonly present at depths between 700 and 1100 m represents a significant mid-Pleistocene marine incursion in the Cerro Prieto area. Tentative correlation of the Cerro Prieto section with the well dated Palm Springs Formation of the Imperial Valley, California area suggests that the Pliocene/Pleistocene boundary occurs at a depth of approximately 2000 m in the area of well M-93. Reworked specimens of Cretaceous foraminifera and fragments of the Cretaceous pelecypod Inoceramus were found in five samples further substantiating the Colorado Plateau provenance of a significant portion of the Colorado River deltaic sediments in the Cerro Prieto area.

  2. Biogeography and molar morphology of Pleistocene African elephants: new evidence from Elandsfontein, Western Cape Province, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kathlyn M.; Stynder, Deano D.

    2015-05-01

    Elandsfontein (EFT) is a Middle Pleistocene archaeological/paleontological site located in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. The largest herbivore in the assemblage is Loxodonta atlantica zulu, an extinct member of the genus that includes modern African elephants. No Elephas recki specimens were recovered at EFT, despite their common occurrence in other regions of Africa at the same time. Because E. recki and L. atlantica molars are similar in appearance, but the two species are traditionally viewed as dominating different regions of Africa during the Pleistocene, isolated molars may on occasions have been assessed to species level on the basis of geography rather than morphology. The last morphologic evaluation of EFT elephants was conducted in the 1970s, and revisiting this issue with new specimens provides added insight into the evolution of elephants in Africa. Reevaluating morphological characteristics of EFT elephant molars, through qualitative and quantitative description and comparison with Middle Pleistocene E. recki recki, L. atlantica atlantica, and L. atlantica zulu molar morphology, corroborates assessment of EFT elephants as L. a. zulu. Two recently discovered, previously undescribed molars from EFT show that molars of L. a. zulu exhibit greater variation in enamel thickness, lamellar frequency, and occlusal surface morphology than previously reported. An update of the Pleistocene biogeography of Loxodonta and Elephas indicates that fossil remains of both are often found at the same localities in eastern Africa. Their rare co-occurrences in the north and south, however, suggest geographic separation of the two genera in at least some regions of Africa, which may have been based on habitat preference.

  3. New Middle Pleistocene hominin cranium from Gruta da Aroeira (Portugal).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daura, Joan; Sanz, Montserrat; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Hoffmann, Dirk L; Quam, Rolf M; Ortega, María Cruz; Santos, Elena; Gómez, Sandra; Rubio, Angel; Villaescusa, Lucía; Souto, Pedro; Mauricio, João; Rodrigues, Filipa; Ferreira, Artur; Godinho, Paulo; Trinkaus, Erik; Zilhão, João

    2017-03-28

    The Middle Pleistocene is a crucial time period for studying human evolution in Europe, because it marks the appearance of both fossil hominins ancestral to the later Neandertals and the Acheulean technology. Nevertheless, European sites containing well-dated human remains associated with an Acheulean toolkit remain scarce. The earliest European hominin crania associated with Acheulean handaxes are at the sites of Arago, Atapuerca Sima de los Huesos (SH), and Swanscombe, dating to 400-500 ka (Marine Isotope Stage 11-12). The Atapuerca (SH) fossils and the Swanscombe cranium belong to the Neandertal clade, whereas the Arago hominins have been attributed to an incipient stage of Neandertal evolution, to Homo heidelbergensis , or to a subspecies of Homo erectus A recently discovered cranium (Aroeira 3) from the Gruta da Aroeira (Almonda karst system, Portugal) dating to 390-436 ka provides important evidence on the earliest European Acheulean-bearing hominins. This cranium is represented by most of the right half of a calvarium (with the exception of the missing occipital bone) and a fragmentary right maxilla preserving part of the nasal floor and two fragmentary molars. The combination of traits in the Aroeira 3 cranium augments the previously documented diversity in the European Middle Pleistocene fossil record.

  4. Sonar Subsea Images of Large Temples, Mammoths, Giant Sloths. Huge Artwork Carvings, Eroded Cities, Human Images, and Paleo Astronomy Sites that Must be Over Ten Thousand Years Old.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, R. L.

    2016-12-01

    Computer enhancing of side scanning sonar plots revealed images of massive art, apparent ruins of cities, and subsea temples. Some images are about four to twenty kilometers in length. Present water depths imply that many of the finds must have been created over ten thousand years ago. Also, large carvings of giant sloths, Ice Age elk, mammoths, mastodons, and other cold climate creatures concurrently indicate great age. In offshore areas of North America, some human faces have beards and what appear to be Caucasian characteristics that clearly contrast with the native tribal images. A few images have possible physical appearances associated with Polynesians. Contacts and at least limited migrations must have occurred much further in the ancient past than previously believed. Greatly rising sea levels and radical changes away from late Ice Age climates had to be devastating to very ancient civilizations. Many images indicate that these cultures were capable of construction and massive art at or near the technological level of the Old Kingdom in Egypt. Paleo astronomy is obvious in some plots. Major concerns are how to further evaluate, catalog, protect, and conserve the creations of those cultures.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. ON THE PRESENCE OF PYRAMIODONTHERIUM (MAMMALIA, XENARTHRA, MEGATHERIIDAE IN THE LATE MIOCENE OF NORTHEASTERN ARGENTINA AND ITS BIOGEOGRAPHICAL IMPLICATIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DIEGO BRANDONI

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available The biochron of the subfamily Megatheriinae, large to very large terrestrial sloths typified by Megatherium Cuvier, in Argentina extends from the middle Miocene of Patagonia to the late Pleistocene-early Holocene. Megatheriines reached their highest diversity in the lower levels (="conglomerado osífero", late Miocene of the Ituzaingó Formation in Entre Ríos Province, northeastern Argentina. Among the four megatheriines that occur in this unit, the genera Promegatherium Ameghino, Eomegatherium Kraglievich and Pliomegatherium Kraglievich represent relatively small to medium-sized taxa. Here we describe new material assigned to Pyramiodontherium, the largest of the four genera from the same bed and comparable in size to some Quaternary species of Megatherium. Three valid species of Pyramiodontherium have been recognized, all distributed mainly in northwestern Argentina, from the late Miocene in Catamarca Province (and probably also in Tucumán Province, and the late Pliocene in La Rioja Province. The presence of this genus in northeastern Argentina extends its known paleobiogeographical distribution. 

  9. The Pleistocene reindeer of the North Sea - initial palaeontological data and archaeological remarks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Glimmerveen, J; Mol, D; van der Plicht, H

    The interdisciplinary North Sea Project aims at investigating the biotic history of the Pleistocene in the Southern Bight of the North Sea. Humans were part of these biotopes too as Palaeolithic flint artefacts prove. Based on a large fossil record and radiocarbon dating, it becomes clear that

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Preliminary report on the geology and ground-water supply of the Newark, New Jersey, area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herpers, Henry; Barksdale, Henry C.

    1951-01-01

    In the Newark area, ground water is used chiefly for industrial cooling, air-conditioning, general processing, and for sanitary purposes. A small amount is used in the manufacture of beverages. Total ground-water pumpage in Newark is estimated at not less than 20,000,000 gallons daily. The Newark area is underlain by formations of Recent, Pleistocene and Triassic age, and the geology and hydrologic properties of these formations are discussed. Attention is called to the important influence of a buried valley in the rock floor beneath the Newark area on the yield of wells located within it. Data on the fluctuation of the water levels and the variation in pumpage are presented, and their significance discussed. The results of a pumping test made during the investigation were inconclusive. The beneficial results of artificially recharging the aquifers in one part of the area are described. The intrusion of salt water into certain parts of the ground-water body is described and graphically portrayed by a map showing the chloride concentration of the ground water in various parts of the City. Insofar as available data permit, the chemical quality of the ground water is discussed and records are given of the ground-water temperatures in various parts of the City. There has been marked lowering of the water table in the eastern part of the area, accompanied by salt water intrusion, indicating that the safe yield of the formations in this part of Newark has probably been exceeded. It is recommended that the study of the ground-water resources of this area be continued, and that artificial recharging of the aquifers be increased over as wide an area as possible.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. Water-table fluctuations in the Amargosa Desert, Nye County, Nevada

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paces, James B.; Whelan, Joseph

    2001-01-01

    Pleistocene ground-water discharge deposits approximately 20 km southwest of Yucca Mountain were previously thought to represent pluvial water-table rises of 80 to 120 m. Data from new boreholes at two of the three discharge sites indicate that the modern water-table is at depths of only 17 to 30 m and that this shallow water is part of the regional ground-water flow system rather than being perched. Calcite in equilibrium with this modern ground water would have isotopic compositions similar to those in Pleistocene calcite associated with the discharge deposits. Carbon and uranium isotopes in both ground water and discharge deposits imply that past discharge consisted of a mixture of both shallow and deep ground water. These data limit Pleistocene water-table fluctuations at the specified Amargosa Desert discharge sites to between 17 and 30 m and eliminate the need to invoke large water-table rises

  18. Mitochondrial and nuclear genes-based phylogeography of Arvicanthis niloticus (Murinae and sub-Saharan open habitats pleistocene history.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gauthier Dobigny

    Full Text Available A phylogeographic study was conducted on the Nile grass rat, Arvicanthis niloticus, a rodent species that is tightly associated with open grasslands from the Sudano-Sahelian regions. Using one mitochondrial (cytochrome b and one nuclear (intron 7 of Beta Fibrinogen gene, robust patterns were retrieved that clearly show that (i the species originated in East Africa concomitantly with expanding grasslands some 2 Ma, and (ii four parapatric and genetically well-defined lineages differentiated essentially from East to West following Pleistocene bioclimatic cycles. This strongly points towards allopatric genetic divergence within savannah refuges during humid episodes, then dispersal during arid ones; secondary contact zones would have then stabilized around geographic barriers, namely, Niger River and Lake Chad basins. Our results pertinently add to those obtained for several other African rodent as well as non-rodent species that inhabit forests, humid zones, savannahs and deserts, all studies that now allow one to depict a more comprehensive picture of the Pleistocene history of the continent south of the Sahara. In particular, although their precise location remains to be determined, at least three Pleistocene refuges are identified within the West and Central African savannah biome.

  19. 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

  20. People of the ancient rainforest: late Pleistocene foragers at the Batadomba-lena rockshelter, Sri Lanka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, Nimal; Kourampas, Nikos; Simpson, Ian A; Deraniyagala, Siran U; Bulbeck, David; Kamminga, Johan; Perera, Jude; Fuller, Dorian Q; Szabó, Katherine; Oliveira, Nuno V

    2011-09-01

    Batadomba-lena, a rockshelter in the rainforest of southwestern Sri Lanka, has yielded some of the earliest evidence of Homo sapiens in South Asia. H. sapiens foragers were present at Batadomba-lena from ca. 36,000 cal BP to the terminal Pleistocene and Holocene. Human occupation was sporadic before the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). Batadomba-lena's Late Pleistocene inhabitants foraged for a broad spectrum of plant and mainly arboreal animal resources (monkeys, squirrels and abundant rainforest snails), derived from a landscape that retained equatorial rainforest cover through periods of pronounced regional aridity during the LGM. Juxtaposed hearths, palaeofloors with habitation debris, postholes, excavated pits, and animal and plant remains, including abundant Canarium nutshells, reflect intensive habitation of the rockshelter in times of monsoon intensification and biome reorganisation after ca. 16,000 cal BP. This period corresponds with further broadening of the economic spectrum, evidenced though increased contribution of squirrels, freshwater snails and Canarium nuts in the diet of the rockshelter occupants. Microliths are more abundant and morphologically diverse in the earliest, pre-LGM layer and decline markedly during intensified rockshelter use on the wane of the LGM. We propose that changing toolkits and subsistence base reflect changing foraging practices, from shorter-lived visits of highly mobile foraging bands in the period before the LGM, to intensified use of Batadomba-lena and intense foraging for diverse resources around the site during and, especially, following the LGM. Traces of ochre, marine shell beads and other objects from an 80 km-distant shore, and, possibly burials reflect symbolic practices from the outset of human presence at the rockshelter. Evidence for differentiated use of space (individual hearths, possible habitation structures) is present in LGM and terminal Pleistocene layers. The record of Batadomba-lena demonstrates

  1. 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...

  2. A remarkable collection of Late Pleistocene reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) remains from Woerden (The Netherlands)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Kolfschoten, Thijs; van der Jagt, Inge; Beeren, Zoe; Argiti, Vasiliki; van der Leije, Judith; van Essen, Hans; Busschers, Freek S.; Stoel, Pieter; van der Plicht, Hans

    2011-01-01

    Woerden, in the central part of The Netherlands, is a locality where the amateur-archaeologist Pieter Stoel collected several thousands of fossil mammalian remains of Pleistocene age. The stratigraphically-mixed assemblage includes a broad variety of taxa including species that are indicative of

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Large Late Pleistocene landslides from the marginal slope of the Flysch Carpathians

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pánek, T.; Hartvich, Filip; Jankovská, Vlasta; Klimeš, Jan; Tábořík, Petr; Bubík, M.; Smolková, V.; Hradecký, J.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 11, č. 6 (2014), s. 981-992 ISSN 1612-510X R&D Projects: GA MŠk LM2010008 Institutional support: RVO:67985891 ; RVO:67985939 Keywords : fossil landslide * radiocarbon dating * electrical resistivity tomography * pollen analysis * Late Pleistocene * Flysch Carpathians * Marine Isotope Stage 3 Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography; EF - Botanics (BU-J) Impact factor: 2.870, year: 2014

  6. Palaeodemography of the Atapuerca-SH Middle Pleistocene hominid sample.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Nicolás, M E

    1997-01-01

    We report here on the palaeodemographic analysis of the hominid sample recovered to date from the Sima de los Huesos (SH) Middle Pleistocene cave site in the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos, Spain). The analysis of the mandibular, maxillary, and dental remains has made it possible to estimate that a minimum of 32 individuals, who probably belonged to the same biological population, are represented in the current SH human hypodigm. The remains of nine-individuals are assigned to males, and nine to females, suggesting that a 1:1 sex ratio characterizes this hominid sample. The survivorship curve shows a low representation of infants and children, a high mortality among the adolescents and prime-age adults, and a low older adult mortality. Longevity was probably no greater than 40 years. This mortality pattern (adolescents and adults); which in some aspects resembles that observed in Neandertals, is quite different from those reported for recent foraging human groups. The adult age-at-death distribution of the SH hominid sample appears to be neither the consequence of underaging the older adults, nor of differential preservation or of the recognition of skeletal remains. Thus if we accept that they had a life history pattern similar to that of modern humans there would appear to be a clear contradiction between the demographic distribution and the demographic viability of the population represented by the SH hominid fossils. The possible representational bias of the SH hominid sample, as well as some aspects of the reproductive biology of the Pleistocene populations are also discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  8. Ground-water resources of north-central Connecticut

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cushman, Robert Vittum

    1964-01-01

    The term 'north-central Connecticut' in this report refers to an area of about 640 square miles within the central lowland of the Connecticut River basin north of Middletown. The area is mostly a broad valley floor underlain by unconsolidated deposits of Pleistocene and Recent age which mantle an erosional surface formed on consolidated rocks of pre-Triassic and Triassic age. The mean annual precipitation at Hartford, near the center of the area, is 42.83 inches and is uniformly distributed throughout the year. The average annual streamflow from the area is about 22 inches or about half the precipitation. The consolidated water-bearing formations are crystalline rocks of pre-Triassic age and sedimentary and igneous rocks of the Newark group of Triassic age. The crystalline rocks include the Middletown gneiss, the Maromas granite gneiss, the Glastonbury granite-gneiss of Rice and Gregory (1906), and the Bolton schist which form the basement complex and the Eastern Upland of north-central Connecticut. Enough water for domestic, stock, and small commercial use generally can be obtained from the crystalline rocks. Recoverable ground water occurs in the interconnected joints and fracture zones and is yielded in amounts ranging from 29 to 35 gpm (gallons per minute) to wells ranging in depth from 29 to 550 feet. The sedimentary rocks of Triassic age underlie all the Connecticut River Lowland and are predominantly arkosic sandstone and shale. Water supplies sufficient for domestic, stock, and small commercial use can be obtained from shallow wells penetrating these rocks, and larger supplies sufficient for industries and smaller municipalities can probably be obtained from deeper wells. Reported yields range from ? to 578 gpm; the larger yields are generally obtained from wells between 300 and 600 feet in depth. Yields are larger where the overlying material is sand and gravel or where the rocks are well fractured. The igneous rocks of Triassic age are basalt and have

  9. Relationship between geohydrology and Upper Pleistocene-Holocene evolution of the eastern region of the Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capítulo, Leandro Rodrigues; Kruse, Eduardo E.

    2017-07-01

    The Upper Pleistocene-Holocene geological evolution, which is characterized by its landscape-forming energy and is related to geological and geomorphological complexity, has an impact on the groundwater dynamics of coastal aquifers. The geological configuration of a sector of the east coast of the Province of Buenos Aires was analyzed, as well as its connection with the geological and geomorphological history of the region during the Late Pleistocene and Holocene, and its influence on the regional and local geohydrological behaviour. This analysis was based on the application of the concept of hydrofacies. Boreholes were drilled and sampled (with depths of up to 40 m), and vertical electrical sounding, electrical tomography and pumping tests were undertaken. The description of the cutting samples by means of a stereo microscope, the interpretation of satellite images, and the construction of lithological and hydrogeological profiles and flow charts were carried out in the laboratory, and then integrated in a GIS. The identification of the lithological units and their distribution in the area allowed the construction of an evolutionary geological model for the Late Pleistocene and Holocene. Three aquifer units can be recognized: one of Late Pleistocene age (hydrofacies E) and the other two of Holocene age (hydrofacies A and C); their hydraulic connection depends on the occurrence and thickness variation of the aquitard units (hydrofacies B and D). The approach adopted allows the examination of the possibilities for groundwater exploitation and constitutes an applied conceptual framework to be taken into consideration when developing conceptual and numerical models at the local and regional scales.

  10. 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.

  11. Middle Pleistocene palaeoenvironmental changes of the eastern Canary Islands - revealed by the Mála dune-palaeosol-sequence at Lanzarote (Canary Islands)

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Suchodoletz, H.; Zöller, L.; Hilgers, A.; Radtke, U.; Faust, D.

    2012-04-01

    The Canary Islands are located at the transition between the Mediterranean and the Saharan climate off NW-Africa. Thus, they are a key area for the investigation of palaeoenvironmental changes. Several terrestrial studies investigated the palaeoenvironmental development of that region during the later part of the last glacial cycle. However, apart from recent investigations of "vega" sediments on Lanzarote Island (Suchodoletz et al. 2010) the palaeoenvironmental evolution during the Middle Pleistocene is hardly studied yet, basically due to the lack of reliable geochronological data. The Mála dune-palaeosol-sequence is located in the north of Lanzarote. It consists of marine shell detritus originally blown out from the insular shelf during periods of low global sea level, and to a small part of Saharan dust and fine quartz sand. The aeolian layers are intercalated with up to eight silty-clayey palaeosol horizons. Unlike the dune sands, the soils indicate stable landscape conditions with trapping of Saharan dust. Using a combination of ESR and luminescence dating techniques, we are able to place this sequence into the Middle Pleistocene, in contrast to former investigations based on 14C datings postulating a Late Pleistocene age (Ortiz et al. 2006). As a consequence, clayey-silty palaeosols represent periods of stable landscape conditions in the Canarian region during the Middle Pleistocene, which we compare with marine palaeoclimatic studies from the area.

  12. The late Pleistocene environment of the Eastern West Beringia based on the principal section at the Main River, Chukotka

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuzmina, Svetlana A.; Sher, Andrei V.; Edwards, Mary E.

    2011-01-01

    Chukotka is a key region for understanding both Quaternary environmental history and transcontinental migrations of flora and fauna during the Pleistocene as it lies at the far eastern edge of Asia bordering the Bering Sea. The now submerged land bridge is the least understood region of Beringia...... yet the most critical to understanding migrations between the Old and New Worlds. The insect fauna of the Main River Ledovy Obryv (Ice Bluff) section, which is late Pleistocene in age (MIS 3-2), is markedly different from coeval faunas of areas further to the west, as it is characterized by very few...

  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. 50 CFR 14.151 - Primary enclosures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR TAKING... Wild Mammals and Birds to the United States Specifications for Sloths, Bats, and Flying Lemurs... located on the upper one-half of the primary enclosure. (b) No more than one sloth, bat, or flying lemur...

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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,

  18. Diversification in a fluctuating island setting: rapid radiation of Ohomopterus ground beetles in the Japanese Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sota, Teiji; Nagata, Nobuaki

    2008-10-27

    The Japanese Islands have been largely isolated from the East Asian mainland since the Early Pleistocene, allowing the diversification of endemic lineages. Here, we explore speciation rates and historical biogeography of the ground beetles of the subgenus Ohomopterus (genus Carabus) based on nuclear and mitochondrial gene sequences. Ohomopterus diverged into 15 species during the Pleistocene. The speciation rate was 1.92 Ma(-1) and was particularly fast (2.37 Ma(-1)) in a group with highly divergent genitalia. Speciation occurred almost solely within Honshu, the largest island with complex geography. Species diversity is highest in central Honshu, where closely related species occur parapatrically and different-sized species co-occur. Range expansion of some species in the past has resulted in such species assemblages. Introgressive hybridization, at least for mitochondrial DNA, has occurred repeatedly between species in contact, but has not greatly disturbed species distinctness. Small-island populations of some species were separated from main-island populations only after the last glacial (or the last interglacial) period, indicating that island isolation had little role in speciation. Thus, the speciation and formation of the Ohomopterus assemblage occurred despite frequent opportunities for secondary contact and hybridization and the lack of persistent isolation. This radiation was achieved without substantial ecological differentiation, but with marked differentiation in mechanical agents of reproductive isolation (body size and genital morphology).

  19. 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

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The role of Pleistocene glacial oscillations in current biodiversity and distribution patterns varies with latitude, physical topology and population life history and has long been a topic of discussion. However, there had been little phylogeographical research in south China, where the geophysical complexity is associated with great biodiversity. A bird endemic in Southeast Asia, the Grey-cheeked Fulvetta, Alcippe morrisonia, has been reported to show deep genetic divergences among its seven subspecies. In the present study, we investigated the phylogeography of A. morrisonia to explore its population structure and evolutionary history, in order to gain insight into the effect of geological events on the speciation and diversity of birds endemic in south China. Results Mitochondrial genes cytochrome b (Cytb and cytochrome c oxidase I (COI were represented by 1236 nucleotide sites from 151 individuals from 29 localities. Phylogenetic analysis showed seven monophyletic clades congruent with the geographically separated groups, which were identified as major sources of molecular variance (90.92% by AMOVA. TCS analysis revealed four disconnected networks, and that no haplotype was shared among the geographical groups. The common ancestor of these populations was dated to 11.6 Mya and several divergence events were estimated along the population evolutionary history. Isolation by distance was inferred by NCPA to be responsible for the current intra-population genetic pattern and gene flow among geographical groups was interrupted. A late Pleistocene demographic expansion was detected in the eastern geographical groups, while the expansion time (0.2–0.4 Mya was earlier than the Last Glacial Maximum. Conclusion It is proposed that the complicated topology preserves high genetic diversity and ancient lineages for geographical groups of A. morrisonia in China mainland and its two major islands, and restricts gene exchange during

  20. Multilocus Phylogeography of the Treefrog Scinax eurydice (Anura, Hylidae) Reveals a Plio-Pleistocene Diversification in the Atlantic Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menezes, Lucas; Canedo, Clarissa; Batalha-Filho, Henrique; Garda, Adrian Antonio; Gehara, Marcelo; Napoli, Marcelo Felgueiras

    2016-01-01

    We aim to evaluate the genetic structure of an Atlantic Forest amphibian species, Scinax eurydice, testing the congruence among patterns identified and proposed by the literature for Pleistocene refugia, microrefugia, and geographic barriers to gene flow such as major rivers. Furthermore, we aim to evaluate predictions of such barriers and refugia on the genetic structure of the species, such as presence/absence of dispersal, timing since separation, and population expansions/contractions. We sequenced mitochondrial and nuclear genetic markers on 94 tissue samples from 41 localities. We inferred a gene tree and estimated genetic distances using mtDNA sequences. We then ran population clustering and assignment methods, AMOVA, and estimated migration rates among populations identified through mtDNA and nDNA analyses. We used a dated species tree, skyline plots, and summary statistics to evaluate concordance between population’s distributions and geographic barriers and Pleistocene refugia. Scinax eurydice showed high mtDNA divergences and four clearly distinct mtDNA lineages. Species tree and population assignment tests supported the existence of two major clades corresponding to northeastern and southeastern Atlantic Forest in Brazil, each one composed of two other clades. Lineage splitting events occurred from late Pliocene to Pleistocene. We identified demographic expansions in two clades, and inexistent to low levels of migrations among different populations. Genetic patterns and demographic data support the existence of two northern Refuge and corroborate microrefugia south of the Doce/Jequitinhonha Rivers biogeographic divide. The results agree with a scenario of recent demographic expansion of lowland taxa. Scinax eurydice comprises a species complex, harboring undescribed taxa consistent with Pleistocene refugia. Two rivers lie at the boundaries among populations and endorse their role as secondary barriers to gene flow. PMID:27248688

  1. Human Remains from the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition of Southwest China Suggest a Complex Evolutionary History for East Asians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curnoe, Darren; Xueping, Ji; Herries, Andy I. R.; Kanning, Bai; Taçon, Paul S. C.; Zhende, Bao; Fink, David; Yunsheng, Zhu; Hellstrom, John; Yun, Luo; Cassis, Gerasimos; Bing, Su; Wroe, Stephen; Shi, Hong; Parr, William C. H.; Shengmin, Huang; Rogers, Natalie

    2012-01-01

    Background Later Pleistocene human evolution in East Asia remains poorly understood owing to a scarcity of well described, reliably classified and accurately dated fossils. Southwest China has been identified from genetic research as a hotspot of human diversity, containing ancient mtDNA and Y-DNA lineages, and has yielded a number of human remains thought to derive from Pleistocene deposits. We have prepared, reconstructed, described and dated a new partial skull from a consolidated sediment block collected in 1979 from the site of Longlin Cave (Guangxi Province). We also undertook new excavations at Maludong (Yunnan Province) to clarify the stratigraphy and dating of a large sample of mostly undescribed human remains from the site. Methodology/Principal Findings We undertook a detailed comparison of cranial, including a virtual endocast for the Maludong calotte, mandibular and dental remains from these two localities. Both samples probably derive from the same population, exhibiting an unusual mixture of modern human traits, characters probably plesiomorphic for later Homo, and some unusual features. We dated charcoal with AMS radiocarbon dating and speleothem with the Uranium-series technique and the results show both samples to be from the Pleistocene-Holocene transition: ∼14.3-11.5 ka. Conclusions/Significance Our analysis suggests two plausible explanations for the morphology sampled at Longlin Cave and Maludong. First, it may represent a late-surviving archaic population, perhaps paralleling the situation seen in North Africa as indicated by remains from Dar-es-Soltane and Temara, and maybe also in southern China at Zhirendong. Alternatively, East Asia may have been colonised during multiple waves during the Pleistocene, with the Longlin-Maludong morphology possibly reflecting deep population substructure in Africa prior to modern humans dispersing into Eurasia. PMID:22431968

  2. Multilocus Phylogeography of the Treefrog Scinax eurydice (Anura, Hylidae) Reveals a Plio-Pleistocene Diversification in the Atlantic Forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menezes, Lucas; Canedo, Clarissa; Batalha-Filho, Henrique; Garda, Adrian Antonio; Gehara, Marcelo; Napoli, Marcelo Felgueiras

    2016-01-01

    We aim to evaluate the genetic structure of an Atlantic Forest amphibian species, Scinax eurydice, testing the congruence among patterns identified and proposed by the literature for Pleistocene refugia, microrefugia, and geographic barriers to gene flow such as major rivers. Furthermore, we aim to evaluate predictions of such barriers and refugia on the genetic structure of the species, such as presence/absence of dispersal, timing since separation, and population expansions/contractions. We sequenced mitochondrial and nuclear genetic markers on 94 tissue samples from 41 localities. We inferred a gene tree and estimated genetic distances using mtDNA sequences. We then ran population clustering and assignment methods, AMOVA, and estimated migration rates among populations identified through mtDNA and nDNA analyses. We used a dated species tree, skyline plots, and summary statistics to evaluate concordance between population's distributions and geographic barriers and Pleistocene refugia. Scinax eurydice showed high mtDNA divergences and four clearly distinct mtDNA lineages. Species tree and population assignment tests supported the existence of two major clades corresponding to northeastern and southeastern Atlantic Forest in Brazil, each one composed of two other clades. Lineage splitting events occurred from late Pliocene to Pleistocene. We identified demographic expansions in two clades, and inexistent to low levels of migrations among different populations. Genetic patterns and demographic data support the existence of two northern Refuge and corroborate microrefugia south of the Doce/Jequitinhonha Rivers biogeographic divide. The results agree with a scenario of recent demographic expansion of lowland taxa. Scinax eurydice comprises a species complex, harboring undescribed taxa consistent with Pleistocene refugia. Two rivers lie at the boundaries among populations and endorse their role as secondary barriers to gene flow.

  3. Changing sedimentary environments during Pleistocene-Holocene in a core from the eastern continental margin of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rao, V.P.; Rao, Ch.M.; Mascarenhas, A.; Rao, K.M.; Reddy, N.P.C.; Das, H.C.

    and are apparently formEd. by rapid burial of terrigenous organic matter by turbidites with intermittent reducing conditions during lowered sealevels. Dolostone fragments appear to have been transportEd. by mass movement processes during the terminal Pleistocene...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  5. Ground-water geology of Kordofan Province, Sudan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodis, Harry G.; Hassan, Abdulla; Wahadan, Lutfi

    1968-01-01

    For much of Kordofan Province, surface-water supplies collected and stored in hafirs, fulas, and tebeldi trees are almost completely appropriated for present needs, and water from wells must serve as the base for future economic and cultural development. This report describes the results of a reconnaissance hydrogeologic investigation of the Province and the nature and distribution of the ground-water resources with respect to their availability for development. Kordofan Province, in central Sudan, lies within the White Nile-Nile River drainage basin. The land surface is largely a plain of low relief; jebels (hills) occur sporadically, and sandy soils are common in most areas except in the south where clayey soils predominate. Seasonal rainfall, ranging from less than 100 millimeters in the north to about 800 millimeters in the south, occurs almost entirely during the summer months, but little runoff ever reaches the Nile or White Nile Rivers. The rocks beneath the surficial depsits (Pleistocene to Recent) in the Province comprise the basement complex (Precambrian), Nawa Series (upper Paleozoic), Nubian Series (Mesozoic), laterite (lower to middle Tertiary), and the Umm Ruwaba Series (Pliocene to Pleistocene). Perennial ground-water supplies in the Province are found chiefly in five hydrologic units, each having distinct geologic or hydrologic characteristics. These units occur in Nubian or Umm Ruwaba strata or both, and the sandstone and conglomerate beds form the :principal aquifers. The water is generally under slight artesian head, and the upper surface of the zone of saturation ranges from about 50 meters to 160 meters below land surface. The surficial deposits and basement rocks are generally poor sources of ground water in most of the Province. Supplies from such sources are commonly temporary and may dissipate entirely during the dry season. Locally, however, perennial supplies are obtained from the surficial deposits and from the basement rocks. Generally

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Pleistocene calcareous nannofossil biochronology at IODP Site U1385 (Expedition 339)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balestra, B.; Flores, J.-A.; Hodell, D. A.; Hernández-Molina, F. J.; Stow, D. A. V.

    2015-12-01

    During Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Expedition 339, Site U1385 (37°34‧N, 10°7‧W, 2578 m below sea level) was drilled in the lower slope of the Portuguese margin, to provide a marine reference section of Pleistocene millennial-scale climate variability. Five holes were cored using the Advanced Piston Corer (APC) to a depth of ~ 151 m below sea floor (mbsf) recovering a continuous stratigraphic record covering the past 1.4 Ma. Here we present results of the succession of standard and unconventional calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphic events. The quantitative study of calcareous nannofossils showed well-preserved and abundant assemblages throughout the core. Most conventional Pleistocene events were recognized and the timing of bioevents were calibrated using correlation to the new oxygen isotope stratigraphy record developed for the Site U1385. The analyses provide further data on the stratigraphic distribution of selected species and genera, such as the large Emiliania huxleyi (> 4 μm), Gephyrocapsa caribbeanica, Helicosphaera inversa, Gephyrocapsa omega and Reticulofenestra asanoi (> 6 μm) and other circular-subcircular small reticulofenestrids, resulting in new insights into the environmental control of their stratigraphic patterns. Finally, the comparison between nannofossil datums and oxygen isotope stratigraphy on the same samples has resulted in an accurate revision of timing of the events, providing valuable biochronologic information.

  9. LATE PLEISTOCENE RODENTS (MAMMALIA: RODENTIA FROM THE BARANICA CAVE NEAR KNJAZEVAC (EASTERN SERBIA: SYSTEMATICS AND PALAEOECOLOGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KATARINA BOGICEVIC

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Baranica is a cave in the Balkan mountain range in the eastern part of Serbia. It contains four layers of sediments of Quaternary age. The Upper Pleistocene deposits (layers 2-4 have yielded a rich and diverse assemblage of vertebrate fauna, including fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and small and large mammals. In this work, preliminary results of a study of the rodent fauna from the Upper Pleistocene deposits of the Baranica Cave (Knjazevac, eastern Serbia are presented. The fossil material comes from the 1995 archaeological excavation. The remains of 10 rodent species are described herein: Spermophilus cf. citelloides, Castor fiber, Sicista subtilis, Cricetulus migratorius, Cricetus cricetus, Mesocricetus newtoni, Apodemus ex gr. sylvaticus-flavicollis, Spalax leucodon, Dryomys nitedula, and Muscardinus avellanarius. Along with eight vole species, this makes altogether 18 species of rodents found in this locality. Both layers 2 and 4 (layer 3 is very poor in fossils have yielded a rodent fauna typical for the cold periods of the Late Pleistocene on the Balkan Peninsula, with a prevalence of open and steppe inhabitants, but some forest dwellers were also present. The assemblages from these layers are similar, but there are some differences in the composition of the fauna, which may indicate a slight shift towards drier conditions. They have also been compared to rodent associations from some Serbian and Bulgarian localities of the same age and their similarities and differences are discussed. SHORT NOTE-NOTA BREVE

  10. Oldest human occupation of Wallacea at Laili Cave, Timor-Leste, shows broad-spectrum foraging responses to late Pleistocene environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Stuart; O'Connor, Sue; Maloney, Tim Ryan; Litster, Mirani; Kealy, Shimona; Fenner, Jack N.; Aplin, Ken; Boulanger, Clara; Brockwell, Sally; Willan, Richard; Piotto, Elena; Louys, Julien

    2017-09-01

    The Wallacea Archipelago provides an extraordinary laboratory for the study of human colonisation and adaptation, yet few detailed archaeological studies have been conducted in the region that span the earliest phase of human settlement. Laili Cave, in northern Timor-Leste, preserves the oldest human occupation in this insular region with a cultural sequence spanning 11,200 to 44,600 cal BP. Small-bodied vertebrates and invertebrates were recovered to the lowest excavated levels, associated with highly concentrated stone artefacts. We report on human behavioural adaptations within the context of Pleistocene environments and changing landscapes using zooarchaeological, stone artefact, bathymetric, and experimental isotopic analyses. Results indicate that Pleistocene humans used the abundant local chert liberally and engaged in mobile broad-spectrum exploitation of invertebrates and fishes from marine, estuarine, and freshwater environments within close proximity of Laili Cave. The faunal assemblage indicates heterogeneous but relatively stable environments during the late Pleistocene. Variability in subsistence strategies over time appears to be a response to changing landscapes and concomitant local resources. This record contrasts with marine specialisations evident from other sites in Timor-Leste and within the broader Wallacean region.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. A comparison of Thellier-type and multispecimen paleointensity determinations on Pleistocene and historical lava flows from Lanzarote (Canary Islands, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvo-Rathert, Manuel; Morales-Contreras, Juan; Carrancho, Ángel; Goguitchaichvili, Avto

    2016-09-01

    Sixteen Miocene, Pleistocene, and historic lava flows have been sampled in Lanzarote (Canary Islands) for paleointensity analysis with both the Coe and multispecimen methods. Besides obtaining new data, the main goal of the study was the comparison of paleointensity results determined with two different techniques. Characteristic Remanent Magnetization (ChRM) directions were obtained in 15 flows, and 12 were chosen for paleointensity determination. In Thellier-type experiments, a selection of reliable paleointensity determinations (43 of 78 studied samples) was performed using sets of criteria of different stringency, trying to relate the quality of results to the strictness of the chosen criteria. Uncorrected and fraction and domain-state corrected multispecimen paleointensity results were obtained in all flows. Results with the Coe method on historical flows either agree with the expected values or show moderately lower ones, but multispecimen determinations display a large deviation from the expected result in one case. No relation can be detected between correct or anomalous results and paleointensity determination quality or rock-magnetic properties. However, results on historical flows suggest that agreement between both methods could be a good indicator of correct determinations. Comparison of results obtained with both methods on seven Pleistocene flows yields an excellent agreement in four and disagreements in three cases. Pleistocene determinations were only accepted if either results from both methods agreed or a result was based on a sufficiently large number (n > 4) of individual Thellier-type determinations. In most Pleistocene flows, a VADM around 5 × 1022 Am2 was observed, although two flows displayed higher values around 9 × 1022 Am2.

  14. Environmental geophysics at the Southern Bush River Peninsula, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Davies, B.E.; Miller, S.F.; McGinnis, L.D. [and others

    1995-05-01

    Geophysical studies have been conducted at five sites in the southern Bush River Peninsula in the Edgewood Area of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. The goals of the studies were to identify areas containing buried metallic objects and to provide diagnostic signatures of the hydrogeologic framework of the site. These studies indicate that, during the Pleistocene Epoch, alternating stands of high and low sea level resulted in a complex pattern of channel-fill deposits. Paleochannels of various sizes and orientations have been mapped throughout the study area by means of ground-penetrating radar and EM-31 techniques. The EM-31 paleochannel signatures are represented onshore either by conductivity highs or lows, depending on the depths and facies of the fill sequences. A companion study shows the features as conductivity highs where they extend offshore. This erosional and depositional system is environmentally significant because of the role it plays in the shallow groundwater flow regime beneath the site. Magnetic and electromagnetic anomalies outline surficial and buried debris throughout the areas surveyed. On the basis of geophysical measurements, large-scale (i.e., tens of feet) landfilling has not been found in the southern Bush River Peninsula, though smaller-scale dumping of metallic debris and/or munitions cannot be ruled out.

  15. The diversity and biogeography of late Pleistocene birds from the lowland Neotropics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steadman, David W.; Oswald, Jessica A.; Rincón, Ascanio D.

    2015-05-01

    The Neotropical lowlands sustain the world's richest bird communities, yet little that we know about their history is based on paleontology. Fossils afford a way to investigate distributional shifts in individual species, and thus improve our understanding of long-term change in Neotropical bird communities. We report a species-rich avian fossil sample from a late Pleistocene tar seep (Mene de Inciarte) in northwestern Venezuela. A mere 175 identified fossils from Mene de Inciarte represent 73 species of birds, among which six are extinct, and eight others no longer occur within 100 km. These 14 species consist mainly of ducks (Anatidae), snipe (Scolopacidae), vultures/condors (Vulturidae), hawks/eagles (Accipitridae), and blackbirds (Icteridae). Neotropical bird communities were richer in the late Pleistocene than today; their considerable extinction may be related to collapse of the large mammal fauna at that time. The species assemblage at Mene de Inciarte suggests that biogeographic patterns, even at continental scales, have been remarkably labile over short geological time frames. Mene de Inciarte is but one of 300 + tar seeps in Venezuela, only two of which have been explored for fossils. We may be on the cusp of an exciting new era of avian paleontology in the Neotropics.

  16. Contributions to the Pleistocene Coral Reefs of the Red Sea Coast, Egypt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Sorogy, A.S.

    2008-01-01

    The Pleistocene coral reefs of the Red Sea coast form discontinuous strip in three morphological units, with elevations range from 10 to 35 m above the present sea level and with maximum width of about 550 m. The morphological steps of the studied reefal units are caused by on-lap during different sea levels, by tectonics, or by erosion during transgression. Facies patterns within reefs exhibit lateral and vertical changes. The lateral development of each unit begins at the shore, covering the whole lagoonal facies and ends at the upper reef slope. These changes either reflect transitions within the depositional environment or they are related to minor/major sea level fluctuations. The vertical pattern shows a transgressive sequence in the lower (youngest) and the upper (oldest) units and a regressive one in the middle unit. Eighty-eight scleractinian species have been identified. They belong to 3 suborders, 8 families and 27 genera. The straitigraphic range of the majority of the identified species, which have been previously recorded from the recent sediments of study area is extended here to the Pleistocene age. The paleo- and -biogeographic distribution of the studied species indicated that all belong to Indo-Pacific affinity as well as Atlantic-Mediterranean for very few. (author)

  17. 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

  18. Complete mitochondrial genome sequence of a Middle Pleistocene cave bear reconstructed from ultrashort DNA fragments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabney, Jesse; Knapp, Michael; Glocke, Isabelle; Gansauge, Marie-Theres; Weihmann, Antje; Nickel, Birgit; Valdiosera, Cristina; García, Nuria; Pääbo, Svante; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Meyer, Matthias

    2013-09-24

    Although an inverse relationship is expected in ancient DNA samples between the number of surviving DNA fragments and their length, ancient DNA sequencing libraries are strikingly deficient in molecules shorter than 40 bp. We find that a loss of short molecules can occur during DNA extraction and present an improved silica-based extraction protocol that enables their efficient retrieval. In combination with single-stranded DNA library preparation, this method enabled us to reconstruct the mitochondrial genome sequence from a Middle Pleistocene cave bear (Ursus deningeri) bone excavated at Sima de los Huesos in the Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain. Phylogenetic reconstructions indicate that the U. deningeri sequence forms an early diverging sister lineage to all Western European Late Pleistocene cave bears. Our results prove that authentic ancient DNA can be preserved for hundreds of thousand years outside of permafrost. Moreover, the techniques presented enable the retrieval of phylogenetically informative sequences from samples in which virtually all DNA is diminished to fragments shorter than 50 bp.

  19. Hidden Ice Worlds - Pleistocene glacigenic deposits in Essex, England. Application of the novel systematic approach to thin-section description.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leszczynska, Karolina; Boreham, Julie; Boreham, Steve

    2013-04-01

    In the 'Hidden Ice Worlds' research project a novel systematic approach for thin-section description (Leszczynska et al., 2011) is applied to analyse the internal structure of 8 m thick periglacially disturbed sequence from the Royal Oak Pit - a small disused quarry in East Anglia, Essex, east of Chelmsford, near Danbury. Danbury Hill is situated on the south-eastern margin of the Elsterian (Anglian) till sheet. This area was glaciated only once, during the Pleistocene, Elsterian (Anglian) glaciation (480-420 ka BP), however two local ice-sheet margin fluctuations are envisaged (inter alia Turner, 1970 and others). The stratigraphical sequence of the Royal Oak Pit comprises: massive gravel, arranged in sheets, overlain by fine silty-clay and silty-sand with ripple marks and planar cross beds, overlain by a 50 cm thick unit of massive gravel gradually changing into periglacially disturbed silty-clayey-gravel with the bottom 50 cm of fine laminated silty clay. This sequence is situated on the lee side of Danbury Hill, at over 50 m OD. This is an atypical location for the periglacially disturbed deposits of such a substantial thickness (up to 8 m), which usually occur in the lower areas. The deposits at this site were investigated at a macro-scale using field-section logging, ground penetrating radar survey, clast lithology, clay mineralogy analysis and loss-on-ignition and at a micro-scale using thin-section analysis. There are two main aims of the project presented: • To describe the genesis and to discern the main processes associated with the formation of the unusually thick periglacially disturbed unit at the Danbury Hill slope and • To test the novel, tree-based, systematic approach as a guiding tool for thin for thin-section description of Quaternary deposits (Leszczynska et al., 2011). The results of the micromorphological analyses of the deposits from the Royal Oak Pit allow a new hypothesis for the origin of the sequence to be put forward. The main

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. U-series component dating for late pleistocene basalt Longgang, Jilin province

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu Fusheng; Yuan Wanming; Han Song

    2003-01-01

    Longgang volcanic swarm belongs to one of volcanic areas which have been active since modern times. In view of multiple eruptions during histories, it is very important to determine age of every eruption for evaluating volcanic hazards. The alkaline basalt samples taken from Dayizishan and diaoshuihu are analyzed by U-series component method, after magnetic separation. The ages of the two samples are (71 ± 9) ka, (106 ± 13) ka before presence, respectively. These data indicate that there exist intensively eruptive activities during late Pleistocene

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. Craniosynostosis in the Middle Pleistocene human Cranium 14 from the Sima de los Huesos, Atapuerca, Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gracia, Ana; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Carretero, José Miguel; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2009-04-21

    We report here a previously undescribed human Middle Pleistocene immature specimen, Cranium 14, recovered at the Sima de los Huesos (SH) site (Atapuerca, Spain), that constitutes the oldest evidence in human evolution of a very rare pathology in our own species, lambdoid single suture craniosynostosis (SSC). Both the ecto- and endo-cranial deformities observed in this specimen are severe. All of the evidence points out that this severity implies that the SSC occurred before birth, and that facial asymmetries, as well as motor/cognitive disorders, were likely to be associated with this condition. The analysis of the present etiological data of this specimen lead us to consider that Cranium 14 is a case of isolated SSC, probably of traumatic origin. The existence of this pathological individual among the SH sample represents also a fact to take into account when referring to sociobiological behavior in Middle Pleistocene humans.

  9. Sequential fragmentation of Pleistocene forests in an East Africa biodiversity hotspot: chameleons as a model to track forest history.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G John Measey

    Full Text Available The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal models of speciation. Dated phylogenies have revealed complex patterns throughout EAM, so we investigated divergence times of forest fauna on four montane isolates in close proximity to determine whether forest break-up was most likely to have been simultaneous or sequential, using population genetics of a forest restricted arboreal chameleon, Kinyongia boehmei.We used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic sequence data and mutation rates from a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to estimate divergence times between montane isolates using a coalescent approach. We found that chameleons on all mountains are most likely to have diverged sequentially within the Pleistocene from 0.93-0.59 Ma (95% HPD 0.22-1.84 Ma. In addition, post-hoc tests on chameleons on the largest montane isolate suggest a population expansion ∼182 Ka.Sequential divergence is most likely to have occurred after the last of three wet periods within the arid Plio-Pleistocene era, but was not correlated with inter-montane distance. We speculate that forest connection persisted due to riparian corridors regardless of proximity, highlighting their importance in the region's historic dispersal events. The population expansion coincides with nearby volcanic activity, which may also explain the relative paucity of the Taita's endemic fauna. Our study shows that forest chameleons are an apposite group to track forest fragmentation, with the inference that forest extended between some EAM during the Pleistocene 1

  10. The discovery and character of Pleistocene calcrete uranium deposits in the Southern High Plains of west Texas, United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Gosen, Bradley S.; Hall, Susan M.

    2017-12-18

    This report describes the discovery and geology of two near-surface uranium deposits within calcareous lacustrine strata of Pleistocene age in west Texas, United States. Calcrete uranium deposits have not been previously reported in the United States. The west Texas uranium deposits share characteristics with some calcrete uranium deposits in Western Australia—uranium-vanadium minerals hosted by nonpedogenic calcretes deposited in saline lacustrine environments.In the mid-1970s, Kerr-McGee Corporation conducted a regional uranium exploration program in the Southern High Plains province of the United States, which led to the discovery of two shallow uranium deposits (that were not publicly reported). With extensive drilling, Kerr-McGee delineated one deposit of about 2.1 million metric tons of ore with an average grade of 0.037 percent U3O8 and another deposit of about 0.93 million metric tons of ore averaging 0.047 percent U3O8.The west-Texas calcrete uranium-vanadium deposits occur in calcareous, fine-grained sediments interpreted to be deposited in saline lakes formed during dry interglacial periods of the Pleistocene. The lakes were associated with drainages upstream of a large Pleistocene lake. Age determinations of tephra in strata adjacent to one deposit indicate the host strata is middle Pleistocene in age.Examination of the uranium-vanadium mineralization by scanning-electron microscopy indicated at least two generations of uranium-vanadium deposition in the lacustrine strata identified as carnotite and a strontium-uranium-vanadium mineral. Preliminary uranium-series results indicate a two-component system in the host calcrete, with early lacustrine carbonate that was deposited (or recrystallized) about 190 kilo-annum, followed much later by carnotite-rich crusts and strontium-uranium-vanadium mineralization in the Holocene (about 5 kilo-annum). Differences in initial 234U/238U activity ratios indicate two separate, distinct fluid sources.

  11. A middle Pleistocene eastern Mediterranean fish refuge: the Tsampika Bay (Rhodes, Greece)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agiadi, K.; Koskeridou, E.; Moissette, P.; Lopez-Otalvaro, G. E.; Quillévéré, F.; Cornée, J. J.

    2012-04-01

    Extensive sampling of the Tsampika marly diatomites reveals the presence of at least three very important fish species, Bregmaceros sp., Sygnathus acus and Spratteloides sp.. Previous records of Bregmaceros sp. in the Mediterranean have suggested that this characteristic Pliocene warm-water circumglobal pelagic fish disappeared from the Mediterranean basin due to the climatic deterioration, after the Gelasian age1,2,3,4. The Tsampika fish-bearing deposits, mainly marly diatomites, are younger than 268 Ka, based on the occurrence of Emiliania huxleyi. Consequently, this is so far the youngest record of Bregmaceros sp. in the Mediterranean, suggesting that typical Pliocene fish may have found refuge in selected localities, such as Tsampika Bay, at least until the Ionian. Evidence for its presence in the Mediterranean basin today is ambiguous. Isolated records of Bregmaceros atlanticus place it in the Sicily Strait5, and off the Israeli and south Turkish coasts6. Although it appears more likely that Bregmaceros atlanticus has been introduced to the modern Mediterranean from the Red Sea, through the Suez Canal, the possibility that it is part of a small population native to the Mediterranean can not be excluded based on present-day data6. Indeed the late Pleistocene Mediterranean fish record is obsolete, due to the lack of appropriate sampling on this subject. Furthermore, the majority of Pleistocene Bregmaceros samples pertain to otoliths, which cannot be unambiguously identified on the species level. As a result, the present findings pose the considerable possibility that the Pleistocene Bregmaceros records belong to two species, B. albyi, the well known post-Messinian Mediterranean fish, and B. atlanticus, which may have invaded the Mediterranean Sea from Gibraltar along with several other warm-water taxa during recurring interglacial periods. The specific identification of the Tsampika fish will undoubtedly shed light to this possibility, and enhance our knowledge

  12. The Taxonomic and Phylogenetic Affinities of Bunopithecus sericus, a Fossil Hylobatid from the Pleistocene of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Alejandra; Pilbrow, Varsha; Villamil, Catalina I.; Korsgaard, Jessica G.; Bailey, Shara E.; Harrison, Terry

    2015-01-01

    Fossil hylobatids are rare, but are known from late Miocene and Pleistocene sites throughout East Asia. The best-known fossil hylobatid from the Pleistocene of China is a left mandibular fragment with M2-3 (AMNH 18534), recovered from a pit deposit near the village of Yanjinggou in Wanzhou District, Chongqing Province. Matthew and Granger described this specimen in 1923 as a new genus and species, Bunopithecus sericus. Establishing the age of Bunopithecus has proved difficult because the Yanjinggou collection represents a mixed fauna of different ages, but it likely comes from early or middle Pleistocene deposits. Although the Bunopithecus specimen has featured prominently in discussions of hylobatid evolution and nomenclature, its systematic status has never been satisfactorily resolved. The present study reexamines the taxonomic and phylogenetic relationships of Bunopithecus by carrying out a detailed comparative morphometric study of its lower molars in relation to a large sample of modern hylobatids. Our results show that differences in M2 and M3 discriminate extant hylobatids fairly well, at least at the generic level, and that AMNH 18534 is not attributable to Hylobates, Nomascus or Symphalangus. Support for a close relationship between Bunopithecus and Hoolock is more equivocal. In most multivariate analyses, Bunopithecus presents a unique morphological pattern that falls outside the range of variation of any hylobatid taxon, although its distance from the cluster represented by extant hoolocks is relatively small. Our results support the generic distinction of Bunopithecus, which most likely represents an extinct crown hylobatid, and one that may possibly represent the sister taxon to Hoolock. PMID:26154175

  13. Rock art at the pleistocene/holocene boundary in Eastern South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neves, Walter A; Araujo, Astolfo G M; Bernardo, Danilo V; Kipnis, Renato; Feathers, James K

    2012-01-01

    Most investigations regarding the first americans have primarily focused on four themes: when the New World was settled by humans; where they came from; how many migrations or colonization pulses from elsewhere were involved in the process; and what kinds of subsistence patterns and material culture they developed during the first millennia of colonization. Little is known, however, about the symbolic world of the first humans who settled the New World, because artistic manifestations either as rock-art, ornaments, and portable art objects dated to the Pleistocene/Holocene transition are exceedingly rare in the Americas. Here we report a pecked anthropomorphic figure engraved in the bedrock of Lapa do Santo, an archaeological site located in Central Brazil. The horizontal projection of the radiocarbon ages obtained at the north profile suggests a minimum age of 9,370 ± 40 BP, (cal BP 10,700 to 10,500) for the petroglyph that is further supported by optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dates from sediment in the same stratigraphic unit, located between two ages from 11.7 ± 0.8 ka BP to 9.9 ± 0.7 ka BP. These data allow us to suggest that the anthropomorphic figure is the oldest reliably dated figurative petroglyph ever found in the New World, indicating that cultural variability during the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary in South America was not restricted to stone tools and subsistence, but also encompassed the symbolic dimension.

  14. A new species of land crab, Sesarma Say, 1817 (Decapoda, Brachyura), from the Pleistocene of Jamaica

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Collins, J.S.H.; Mitchell, S.F.; Donovan, S.K.

    2009-01-01

    Terrestrial arthropods are poorly known from the Cenozoic of Jamaica. A probably Late Pleistocene land crab, Sesarma primigenium sp. nov., is described from the Western Cement Company Cave, parish of St. Elizabeth, southwestern Jamaica. The same species is also tentatively recognised from the Late

  15. 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.    

  16. Distribution of late Pleistocene ice-rich syngenetic permafrost of the Yedoma Suite in east and central Siberia, Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, Guido; Robinson, Joel E.; Bryant, Robin; Taylor, Maxwell D.; Harper, William; DeMasi, Amy; Kyker-Snowman, Emily; Veremeeva, Alexandra; Schirrmeister, Lutz; Harden, Jennifer

    2013-01-01

    This digital database is the product of collaboration between the U.S. Geological Survey, the Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks; the Los Altos Hills Foothill College GeoSpatial Technology Certificate Program; the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Potsdam, Germany; and the Institute of Physical Chemical and Biological Problems in Soil Science of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The primary goal for creating this digital database is to enhance current estimates of soil organic carbon stored in deep permafrost, in particular the late Pleistocene syngenetic ice-rich permafrost deposits of the Yedoma Suite. Previous studies estimated that Yedoma deposits cover about 1 million square kilometers of a large region in central and eastern Siberia, but these estimates generally are based on maps with scales smaller than 1:10,000,000. Taking into account this large area, it was estimated that Yedoma may store as much as 500 petagrams of soil organic carbon, a large part of which is vulnerable to thaw and mobilization from thermokarst and erosion. To refine assessments of the spatial distribution of Yedoma deposits, we digitized 11 Russian Quaternary geologic maps. Our study focused on extracting geologic units interpreted by us as late Pleistocene ice-rich syngenetic Yedoma deposits based on lithology, ground ice conditions, stratigraphy, and geomorphological and spatial association. These Yedoma units then were merged into a single data layer across map tiles. The spatial database provides a useful update of the spatial distribution of this deposit for an approximately 2.32 million square kilometers land area in Siberia that will (1) serve as a core database for future refinements of Yedoma distribution in additional regions, and (2) provide a starting point to revise the size of deep but thaw-vulnerable permafrost carbon pools in the Arctic based on surface geology and the distribution of cryolithofacies types at high spatial

  17. What happened to gray whales during the Pleistocene? The ecological impact of sea-level change on benthic feeding areas in the North Pacific Ocean.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas D Pyenson

    Full Text Available Gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus undertake long migrations, from Baja California to Alaska, to feed on seasonally productive benthos of the Bering and Chukchi seas. The invertebrates that form their primary prey are restricted to shallow water environments, but global sea-level changes during the Pleistocene eliminated or reduced this critical habitat multiple times. Because the fossil record of gray whales is coincident with the onset of Northern Hemisphere glaciation, gray whales survived these massive changes to their feeding habitat, but it is unclear how.We reconstructed gray whale carrying capacity fluctuations during the past 120,000 years by quantifying gray whale feeding habitat availability using bathymetric data for the North Pacific Ocean, constrained by their maximum diving depth. We calculated carrying capacity based on modern estimates of metabolic demand, prey availability, and feeding duration; we also constrained our estimates to reflect current population size and account for glaciated and non-glaciated areas in the North Pacific. Our results show that key feeding areas eliminated by sea-level lowstands were not replaced by commensurate areas. Our reconstructions show that such reductions affected carrying capacity, and harmonic means of these fluctuations do not differ dramatically from genetic estimates of carrying capacity.Assuming current carrying capacity estimates, Pleistocene glacial maxima may have created multiple, weak genetic bottlenecks, although the current temporal resolution of genetic datasets does not test for such signals. Our results do not, however, falsify molecular estimates of pre-whaling population size because those abundances would have been sufficient to survive the loss of major benthic feeding areas (i.e., the majority of the Bering Shelf during glacial maxima. We propose that gray whales survived the disappearance of their primary feeding ground by employing generalist filter-feeding modes

  18. Nuclear DNA sequences from the Middle Pleistocene Sima de los Huesos hominins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Matthias; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; de Filippo, Cesare; Nagel, Sarah; Aximu-Petri, Ayinuer; Nickel, Birgit; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia, Ana; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald; Viola, Bence; Kelso, Janet; Prüfer, Kay; Pääbo, Svante

    2016-03-24

    A unique assemblage of 28 hominin individuals, found in Sima de los Huesos in the Sierra de Atapuerca in Spain, has recently been dated to approximately 430,000 years ago. An interesting question is how these Middle Pleistocene hominins were related to those who lived in the Late Pleistocene epoch, in particular to Neanderthals in western Eurasia and to Denisovans, a sister group of Neanderthals so far known only from southern Siberia. While the Sima de los Huesos hominins share some derived morphological features with Neanderthals, the mitochondrial genome retrieved from one individual from Sima de los Huesos is more closely related to the mitochondrial DNA of Denisovans than to that of Neanderthals. However, since the mitochondrial DNA does not reveal the full picture of relationships among populations, we have investigated DNA preservation in several individuals found at Sima de los Huesos. Here we recover nuclear DNA sequences from two specimens, which show that the Sima de los Huesos hominins were related to Neanderthals rather than to Denisovans, indicating that the population divergence between Neanderthals and Denisovans predates 430,000 years ago. A mitochondrial DNA recovered from one of the specimens shares the previously described relationship to Denisovan mitochondrial DNAs, suggesting, among other possibilities, that the mitochondrial DNA gene pool of Neanderthals turned over later in their history.

  19. 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.

  20. Different orbital rhythms in the Asian summer monsoon records from North and South China during the Pleistocene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ao, H.; Dekkers, M.J.; Xiao, G.; Yang, X.; Qin, L.; Liu, X; Qiang, X.; Chang, H.; Zhao, H.

    2012-01-01

    Here we construct a Pleistocene astronomical timescale for the Nihewan fluvio–lacustrine sediments (North China), via tuning a stacked summer monsoon index generated from grain size and low-field magnetic susceptibility records to orbital obliquity and precession. Combining the summer monsoon

  1. Genetic consequences of population expansions and contractions in the common hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) since the Late Pleistocene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stoffel, Céline; Dufresnes, Christophe; Okello, John B A

    2015-01-01

    Over the past two decades, an increasing amount of phylogeographic work has substantially improved our understanding of African biogeography, in particular the role played by Pleistocene pluvial-drought cycles on terrestrial vertebrates. However, still little is known on the evolutionary history...

  2. Sedimentation and erosion processes in Middle to Late Pleistocene sequences exposed in the brickyard of Langenlois/Lower Austria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thiel, Christine; Terhorst, Birgit; Jaburová, Iva

    2011-01-01

    The correlation of sedimentary and pedogenetic processes in Lower Austria is difficult due to significant discontinuities and local variability in soil formation. This hampers landscape reconstruction at a regional scale. However, at a local scale distinct landscape formation processes represented...... by a shift from fluvial to aeolian deposition can be observed in the brickyard of Langenlois, Lower Austria. Sedimentological and mineralogical analyses in combination with palaeontological finds suggest that the fluvial deposition took place during the Middle Pleistocene. This attribution is confirmed...... in Austria; it indicates a Middle Pleistocene interglacial period. The low degree of weathering as well as Cryosols found in the loess sequence point to loess accumulation during the Last Glacial; the dating results (35–55 ka) indicate prolonged loess deposition. No signs of pedogenesis could be found...

  3. 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

  4. Implication of biomarkers signatures of the Ulleung Basin, East Sea, during the Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Jiyoung; Lee, Kyung Eun; Kim, Ji-Hoon; Bahk, Jang-Jun; Yoo, Dong-Geun

    2014-05-01

    In this study, the molecular distribution of the n-alkanes, alkenone and C/N ratio and δ13C of bulk sediment were used to assess changes in organic matter (OM) source and transport which could be related with paleoclimate change. The proxy records corresponding to the Pleistocene have been obtained from the well-studied the Ulleung Basin Gas Hydrate Expedition 2 (UBGH2) site 11 in the Ulleung Basin, East Sea. The distribution of carbon preference index (CPI) of n-alkane encountered in this study confirmed the importance of terrestrial OM in the marine sediment. Alkenone has been widely applied for sea surface temperature (SST) reconstruction. The data results show that CPI values generally increase with decreasing paleo-SST. Plot of C/N ratio versus δ13C shows a predominance of marine algae origin in the study area. It may indicate that the minimum CPI in warm period is related with the contribution of probably enhanced biodegradation, while the maximum CPI value in cold period result from restrain of OM input associated with sea level lowering. It is likely that the vertical variations of the biomarkers signature reflect the shifts in sedimentary environment and transportation related with change of ocean currents and sea level during the Pleistocene period.

  5. Seismic Stratigraphy of Pleistocene Deltaic Deposits in Bahía Blanca Estuary, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SALVADOR ALIOTTA

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The Bahía Blanca estuary (Argentina has a morphological configuration resulting from hydrological and sedimentary processes related to Late Quaternary sea level changes. This estuarine system occupies a large coastal plain with a dense net of tidal channels, low-altitude islands and large intertidal flats. Little is known about the sedimentary units of the marine subbottom. Therefore, a stratigraphical analysis of the northern coast of Bahía Blanca estuary was carried out using high resolution seismic (3.5 kHz in order to: i define Quaternary sequences, ii describe sedimentary structures, and iii determine the paleoenvironmental conditions of sedimentation. The seismic stratigraphic data collected and their correlation with drilling lithological data show five seismic sequences (S1, S2, S3, S4 and S5, of which S1-S2 were found to be associated with a continental paleoenvironment of Miocene-Pleistocene age. Sequences S3 and S4, whose lithology and seismic facies (paleochannel structures and prograding reflection configurations, were defined on these materials, to evidence the development of an ancient deltaic environment which was part of a large Pleistocene drainage system. The S5 sequence was formed during the Holocene transgressive-regressive process and complete the seismostratigraphic column defined in the present study.

  6. Lower and Middle Pleistocene sediment sequence with archaeological finds in Horky nad Jizerou (okr. Mladá Boleslav/ CZ)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šída, P.; Sázelová, S.; Havlíček, P.; Hlaváč, Jaroslav

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 45, č. 3 (2015), s. 283-302 ISSN 0342-734X Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : Middle Pleistocene * Lower and Middle Palaeolithic * Quaternary geology * Bohemia * Czech Republic Subject RIV: AC - Archeology, Anthropology, Ethnology

  7. Isotopic investigation of ground water resources in the Ojo Alamo sandstone, Nacimiento, and San Jose Formations, San Juan Basin, New Mexico. Technical completion report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phillips, F.M.; Peeters, L.A.; Tansey, M.K.

    1984-06-01

    The San Juan Basin, in northwest New Mexico, has vast reserves of strippable, low-sulfur coal. Development of the resource will require large quantities of water, from an area where water resources are not abundant. Since surface-water supplies are fully allocated, increased future water demands will have to be met through ground-water development. The study concentrates on the Ojo Alamo, Nacimiento, and San Jose Formations, the aquifers directly above the principal coal unit. Carbon-14 and tritium methods were used to date the ground water in these units. Initial radiocarbon activities were calculated using the models of Vogel, Tamers, Pearson, Mook and Fontes. The observation lends support to the hypothesis of isotopically lighter Pleistocene precipitation. Such lighter recharge was most likely due to a colder mean annual temperature and perhaps increased winter precipitation. A similar change is obtained from noble-gas paleothermometry

  8. 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.

  9. Geologic Setting and Preservation of a Late Pleistocene Bald Cypress Forest Discovered on the Northern Gulf of Mexico Continental Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez Rodriguez, S. M.; Bentley, S. J.; DeLong, K. L.; Xu, K.; Harley, G. L.; Reese, C. A.; Obelcz, J.

    2016-02-01

    Following landfall of Hurricane Ivan in 2004, a previously buried bald cypress forest (Taxodium distichum) was discovered on the continental shelf seafloor, offshore of Orange Beach, Alabama, USA, in 20 m of water. The forest is preserved as stumps in life position with little evidence of decay and large pieces of trunks, roots, and branches. Analysis shows the forest is older than can be dated with conventional C-14 methods. Comparison of Pleistocene sea level curves with the study area depth suggests that the forest developed and was likely buried during marine isotope stage 3 or 4, or perhaps older stages. Condition of sampled wood suggests that the forest was buried and preserved in anoxic sediments for millennia, prior to recent exhumation. To better understand the puzzling geological conditions that could allow forest preservation during sea level fall and shelf exposure spanning >30,000 years, submersible vibracores (to 6 m length) and geophysical data (swath bathymetry, sidescan, and chirp subbottom) were collected in August 2015. Cores are being analyzed using a Geotek Multi Sensor Core Logger, granulometric and sediment composition analyses, and a wide range of paleoenvironmental observations. This presentation focuses on the geological setting and mode of forest preservation. Preliminary analysis of sediment types and stratigraphy in cores shows that the local stratigraphy is broadly consistent with previous regional shelf-stratigraphic studies, consisting of (top to bottom) a surface layer of Holocene transgressive sands (to 3 m thick) unconformably overlying Pleistocene terrestrial and coastal deposits. However, the Pleistocene lithofacies (fluvial, backswamp, or possibly delta plain muds) differ considerably in both depositional environment and degree of environmental preservation compared to previous studies. Ongoing analysis will focus on elucidating the succession of events that allows preservation of this unique Pleistocene sedimentary archive.

  10. Modelling the Middle Pleistocene uplift in the Ardennes-Rhenish Massif: Thermo-mechanical weakening under the Eifel?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Garcia-Castellanos, D.; Cloetingh, S.A.P.L.; van Balen, R.T.

    2000-01-01

    Middle Pleistocene uplift in the Eifel has been interpreted as the isostatic response of the lithosphere to a deep buoyant hot body. The spatial and temporal distribution of the uplift in the Ardennes-Rhenish Massif Region has recently been constrained by new data of river incision that have been

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Intrapopulational body size variation and cranial capacity variation in Middle Pleistocene humans: the Sima de los Huesos sample (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo, C; Carretero, J M; Arsuaga, J L; Gracia, A; Martínez, I

    1998-05-01

    A sexual dimorphism more marked than in living humans has been claimed for European Middle Pleistocene humans, Neandertals and prehistoric modern humans. In this paper, body size and cranial capacity variation are studied in the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene sample. This is the largest sample of non-modern humans found to date from one single site, and with all skeletal elements represented. Since the techniques available to estimate the degree of sexual dimorphism in small palaeontological samples are all unsatisfactory, we have used the bootstraping method to asses the magnitude of the variation in the Sima de los Huesos sample compared to modern human intrapopulational variation. We analyze size variation without attempting to sex the specimens a priori. Anatomical regions investigated are scapular glenoid fossa; acetabulum; humeral proximal and distal epiphyses; ulnar proximal epiphysis; radial neck; proximal femur; humeral, femoral, ulnar and tibial shaft; lumbosacral joint; patella; calcaneum; and talar trochlea. In the Sima de los Huesos sample only the humeral midshaft perimeter shows an unusual high variation (only when it is expressed by the maximum ratio, not by the coefficient of variation). In spite of that the cranial capacity range at Sima de los Huesos almost spans the rest of the European and African Middle Pleistocene range. The maximum ratio is in the central part of the distribution of modern human samples. Thus, the hypothesis of a greater sexual dimorphism in Middle Pleistocene populations than in modern populations is not supported by either cranial or postcranial evidence from Sima de los Huesos.

  14. Adding Theoretical Grounding to Grounded Theory: Toward Multi-Grounded Theory

    OpenAIRE

    Göran Goldkuhl; Stefan Cronholm

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to challenge some of the cornerstones of the grounded theory approach and propose an extended and alternative approach for data analysis and theory development, which the authors call multi-grounded theory (MGT). A multi-grounded theory is not only empirically grounded; it is also grounded in other ways. Three different grounding processes are acknowledged: theoretical, empirical, and internal grounding. The authors go beyond the pure inductivist approach in GT an...

  15. Using obsidian transfer distances to explore social network maintenance in late Pleistocene hunter-gatherers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, Eiluned; Moutsiou, Theodora

    2014-12-01

    Social behaviour is notoriously difficult to study archaeologically and it is unclear how large the networks of prehistoric humans were, or how they remained connected. Maintaining social cohesion was crucial for early humans because social networks facilitate cooperation and are imperative for survival and reproduction. Recent hunter-gatherer social organisation typically comprises a number of nested layers, ranging from the nuclear family through to the ~1500-strong ethnolinguistic tribe. Here we compare maximum obsidian transfer distances from the late Pleistocene with ethnographic data on the size of the geographic areas associated with each of these social grouping layers in recent hunter-gatherers. The closest match between the two is taken to indicate the maximum social layer within which contact could be sustained by Pleistocene hominins. Within both the (sub)tropical African and Subarctic biomes, the maximum obsidian transfer distances for Pleistocene modern humans (~200km and ~400km respectively) correspond to the geographic ranges of the outermost tribal layer in recent hunter-gatherers. This suggests that modern humans could potentially sustain the cohesion of their entire tribe at all latitudes, even though networks are more dispersed nearer the poles. Neanderthal obsidian transfer distances (300km) indicate that although Neanderthal home ranges are larger than those of low latitude hominins, Neanderthals travelled shorter distances than modern humans living at the same high latitudes. We argue that, like modern humans, Neanderthals could have maintained tribal cohesion, but that their tribes were substantially smaller than those of contemporary modern humans living in similar environments. The greater time taken to traverse the larger modern human tribal ranges may have limited the frequency of their face-to-face interactions and thus necessitated additional mechanisms to ensure network connectivity, such as the exchange of symbolic artefacts

  16. 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. 

  17. Arctic East Siberia had a lower latitude in the Pleistocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willy Woelfli

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Remains of mammoths in Arctic East Siberia, where there is not sufficient sunlight over the year for the growth of the plants on which these animals feed, indicate that the latitude of this region was lower before the end of the Pleistocene than now. Reconstructing this geographic pole shift, we introduce a massive object, which moved in an extremely eccentric orbit and was hot from tidal work and solar radiation. Evaporation produced a disk-shaped cloud of ions around the Sun. This cloud partially shielded the solar radiation, producing the cold and warm periods characterizing the Pleistocene. The shielding depends on the inclination of Earth's orbit, which has a period of 100. 000 years. The cloud builds up to a point where inelastic particle collisions induce its collapse The resulting near-periodic time dependence resembles that of Dansgaard-Oeschger events. The Pleistocene ended when the massive object had a close encounter with the Earth, which suffered a one per mil extensional deformation. While the deformation relaxed to an equilibrium shape in one to several years, the globe turned relative to the rotation axis: The North Pole moved from Greenland to the Arctic Sea. The massive object split into fragments, which evaporated.Na Sibéria Oriental Ártica, onde há sobras de mamutes, a luzsolar durante o ano é insuficiente para sustentar as plantas que alimentam esses animais. Isto prova que a latitude dessas regiões era menor durante o Pleistoceno. Reconstruindo esse deslocamento geográfico dos pólos introduzimos um planeta adicional numa órbita tão excêntrica que a energia da maré e da radiação solar o esquentou. A sua evaporação criava em torno do sol uma nuvem de íons que espalhava a radiação solar e assim causava os períodos quentes e frios do Pleistoceno. O efeito depende da inclinação da órbita da terra, que varia com um período de 100. 000 anos. Quase periodicamente anuvem se formava até o ponto em que as colis

  18. 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.

  19. A geometric morphometric analysis of hominin upper second and third molars, with particular emphasis on European Pleistocene populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Robles, Aida; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Martinón-Torres, María; Prado-Simón, Leyre; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2012-09-01

    The study of dental morphology by means of geometric morphometric methods allows for a detailed and quantitative comparison of hominin species that is useful for taxonomic assignment and phylogenetic reconstruction. Upper second and third molars have been studied in a comprehensive sample of Plio- and Pleistocene hominins from African, Asian and European sites in order to complete our analysis of the upper postcanine dentition. Intraspecific variation in these two molars is high, but some interspecific trends can be identified. Both molars exhibit a strong reduction of the distal cusps in recent hominin species, namely European Homo heidelbergensis, Homo neanderthalensis and Homo sapiens, but this reduction shows specific patterns and proportions in the three groups. Second molars tend to show four well developed cusps in earlier hominin species and their morphology is only marginally affected by allometric effects. Third molars can be incipiently reduced in earlier species and they evince a significant allometric component, identified both inter- and intraspecifically. European Middle Pleistocene fossils from Sima de los Huesos (SH) show a very strong reduction of these two molars, even more marked than the reduction observed in Neanderthals and in modern human populations. The highly derived shape of SH molars points to an early acquisition of typical Neanderthal dental traits by pre-Neanderthal populations and to a deviation of this population from mean morphologies of other European Middle Pleistocene groups. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Paleoclimatic modeling and phylogeography of least killifish, Heterandria formosa: insights into Pleistocene expansion-contraction dynamics and evolutionary history of North American Coastal Plain freshwater biota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagley, Justin C; Sandel, Michael; Travis, Joseph; Lozano-Vilano, María de Lourdes; Johnson, Jerald B

    2013-10-09

    Climatic and sea-level fluctuations throughout the last Pleistocene glacial cycle (~130-0 ka) profoundly influenced present-day distributions and genetic diversity of Northern Hemisphere biotas by forcing range contractions in many species during the glacial advance and allowing expansion following glacial retreat ('expansion-contraction' model). Evidence for such range dynamics and refugia in the unglaciated Gulf-Atlantic Coastal Plain stems largely from terrestrial species, and aquatic species Pleistocene responses remain relatively uninvestigated. Heterandria formosa, a wide-ranging regional endemic, presents an ideal system to test the expansion-contraction model within this biota. By integrating ecological niche modeling and phylogeography, we infer the Pleistocene history of this livebearing fish (Poeciliidae) and test for several predicted distributional and genetic effects of the last glaciation. Paleoclimatic models predicted range contraction to a single southwest Florida peninsula refugium during the Last Glacial Maximum, followed by northward expansion. We inferred spatial-population subdivision into four groups that reflect genetic barriers outside this refuge. Several other features of the genetic data were consistent with predictions derived from an expansion-contraction model: limited intraspecific divergence (e.g. mean mtDNA p-distance = 0.66%); a pattern of mtDNA diversity (mean Hd = 0.934; mean π = 0.007) consistent with rapid, recent population expansion; a lack of mtDNA isolation-by-distance; and clinal variation in allozyme diversity with higher diversity at lower latitudes near the predicted refugium. Statistical tests of mismatch distributions and coalescent simulations of the gene tree lent greater support to a scenario of post-glacial expansion and diversification from a single refugium than to any other model examined (e.g. multiple-refugia scenarios). Congruent results from diverse data indicate H. formosa fits the classic Pleistocene

  1. Middel Pleistocene to Holocene fluvial terrace development and uplift-driven valley incision in the SE Carpathians, Romania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Necea, D.; Fielitz, W.; Andriessen, P.A.M.; Dinu, C.

    2013-01-01

    This study reveals that in the SE Carpathians terrace development and fluvial incision during the Middle Pleistocene-Holocene are predominantly controlled by tectonic uplift as shown by terrace distributions and uplift amounts and rates. The work focuses on a transect from the internal nappes and

  2. Three new human skulls from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site in Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arsuaga, J L; Martínez, I; Gracia, A; Carretero, J M; Carbonell, E

    1993-04-08

    Three important fossil hominids were found in July 1992 in the Middle Pleistocene cave site called Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Northern Spain). One is a complete calvaria (cranium 4), the second a virtually complete cranium (cranium 5), the third represents a more fragmentary cranium of an immature individual (cranium 6). There is a large difference in size between the two adult specimens (for example endocranial volume 1,125 cm3 versus 1,390 cm3). The Atapuerca human remains are dated to > 300,000 years. The Atapuerca cranial sample fits within the 'archaic Homo sapiens' group, but is well differentiated from the Asian Homo erectus group. The extensive Atapuerca human collection is the most complete sample of Middle Pleistocene humans yet discovered from one site, and appears to document an early stage in Neanderthal evolution.

  3. 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

  4. Loess deposition and Paleolithic human activity in late Pleistocene in North China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, D.

    2013-12-01

    Loess is one of the best geological records in the world for reconstruction of paleoenvironment. Loess deposited widely in North China in Quaternary, composing the famous Chinese Loess Plateau where loess sections could be as thick as 200 m. In these thick loess profiles, various archaeological remains including human fossils are found across the Chinese Loess Plateau, which indicates the aeolian loess deposition provides a good preservation environment for archaeological remains or the environment when loess is deposited in North China is favorable for human subsistence. Therefore, well developed loess studies using conventional methods such as grain size, magnetism, carbonate contents, TOC and biological or chemical methods like pollen, phytolith, stable isotopes, could provide important information for archaeologists about site formation process, human subsistence environment and human adaptation behaviors. This study focuses on late Pleistocene environment change and human adaptation in Chinese Western Loess Plateau. Over fifty Paleolithic sites were found buried in loess sections in two small rive catchments about 400 km2 in Chinese Western Loess Plateau in this study. Based on the well loess study in this region, the ages of most of the sites could be easily assumed in the field, which were usually confirmed by later radiocarbon or OSL dating results. Paleoenvironment of human subsistence is reconstructed using pollen, grain size, magnetism studies on the loess profiles producing archaeological remains. The chronological framework built with absolute dating results and loess-paleosol sequence comparison shows that humans first appear in the study area during warm and humid MIS5, may have abandoned the area in cold MIS4, reappeared in cool but humid MIS3 and continued thereafter, even extremely cold and dry LGM. A comprehensive study of 3727 pieces of stone artifacts shows that small-flake-tool industry is dominant through most of the late Pleistocene and

  5. From Pleistocene to Holocene: the prehistory of southwest Asia in evolutionary context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watkins, Trevor

    2017-08-14

    In this paper I seek to show how cultural niche construction theory offers the potential to extend the human evolutionary story beyond the Pleistocene, through the Neolithic, towards the kind of very large-scale societies in which we live today. The study of the human past has been compartmentalised, each compartment using different analytical vocabularies, so that their accounts are written in mutually incompatible languages. In recent years social, cognitive and cultural evolutionary theories, building on a growing body of archaeological evidence, have made substantial sense of the social and cultural evolution of the genus Homo. However, specialists in this field of studies have found it difficult to extend their kind of analysis into the Holocene human world. Within southwest Asia the three or four millennia of the Neolithic period at the beginning of the Holocene represents a pivotal point, which saw the transformation of human society in the emergence of the first large-scale, permanent communities, the domestication of plants and animals, and the establishment of effective farming economies. Following the Neolithic, the pace of human social, economic and cultural evolution continued to increase. By 5000 years ago, in parts of southwest Asia and northeast Africa there were very large-scale urban societies, and the first large-scale states (kingdoms). An extension of cultural niche construction theory enables us to extend the evolutionary narrative of the Pleistocene into the Holocene, opening the way to developing a single, long-term, evolutionary account of human history.

  6. Ground-water geology of the coastal zone, Long Beach-Santa Ana area, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poland, J.F.; Piper, A.M.

    1956-01-01

    This paper is the first chapter of a comprehensive report on the ground-water features in the southern part of the coastal plain in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, Calif., with special reference to the effectiveness of the so-called coastal barrier--the Newport-Inglewood structural zone--in restraining landwar,-1 movement of saline water. The coastal plain in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, which covers some 775 square miles, sustains a large urban and rural population, diverse industries, and intensive agricultural developments. The aggregate ground-water withdrawal in 1945 was about 400,000 acre-feet a year, an average of about 360 million gallons a day. The dominant land-form elements are a central lowland plain with tongues extending to the coast, bordering highlands and foothills, and a succession of low hills and mesas aligned northwestward along the coastal edge of the central low- land plain. These low hills and mesas are the land-surface expression of geologic structure in the Newport-Inglewood zone. The highland areas that border the inland edge of the coastal plain are of moderate altitude and relief; most of the ridge crests range from 1,400 to 2,500 feet in altitude, but Santiago Peak in the Santa Ana Mountains attains a height of 5,680 feet above sea level. From these highlands the land surface descends across foothills and aggraded alluvial aprons to the central lowland, Downey Plain, here defined as the surface formed by alluvial aggradation during the post-Pleistocene time of rising base level. The Newport-Inglewood belt of hills and plains (mesas) has a maximum relief of some 500 feet but is widely underlain at a depth of about 30 feet by a surface of marine plantation. As initially formed in late Pleistocene time that surface was largely a featureless plain. Thus the present land-surface forms within the Newport-Inglewood belt measure the earth deformation that has occurred there since late Pleistocene time and so are pertinent with respect to

  7. 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

  8. Mitochondrial genomes reveal an explosive radiation of extinct and extant bears near the Miocene-Pliocene boundary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Johannes; Unger, Tina; Noçon, Aline; Malaspinas, Anna-Sapfo; Kolokotronis, Sergios-Orestis; Stiller, Mathias; Soibelzon, Leopoldo; Spriggs, Helen; Dear, Paul H; Briggs, Adrian W; Bray, Sarah C E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Rabeder, Gernot; Matheus, Paul; Cooper, Alan; Slatkin, Montgomery; Pääbo, Svante; Hofreiter, Michael

    2008-07-28

    Despite being one of the most studied families within the Carnivora, the phylogenetic relationships among the members of the bear family (Ursidae) have long remained unclear. Widely divergent topologies have been suggested based on various data sets and methods. We present a fully resolved phylogeny for ursids based on ten complete mitochondrial genome sequences from all eight living and two recently extinct bear species, the European cave bear (Ursus spelaeus) and the American giant short-faced bear (Arctodus simus). The mitogenomic data yield a well-resolved topology for ursids, with the sloth bear at the basal position within the genus Ursus. The sun bear is the sister taxon to both the American and Asian black bears, and this clade is the sister clade of cave bear, brown bear and polar bear confirming a recent study on bear mitochondrial genomes. Sequences from extinct bears represent the third and fourth Pleistocene species for which complete mitochondrial genomes have been sequenced. Moreover, the cave bear specimen demonstrates that mitogenomic studies can be applied to Pleistocene fossils that have not been preserved in permafrost, and therefore have a broad application within ancient DNA research. Molecular dating of the mtDNA divergence times suggests a rapid radiation of bears in both the Old and New Worlds around 5 million years ago, at the Miocene-Pliocene boundary. This coincides with major global changes, such as the Messinian crisis and the first opening of the Bering Strait, and suggests a global influence of such events on species radiations.

  9. Mitochondrial genomes reveal an explosive radiation of extinct and extant bears near the Miocene-Pliocene boundary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rabeder Gernot

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite being one of the most studied families within the Carnivora, the phylogenetic relationships among the members of the bear family (Ursidae have long remained unclear. Widely divergent topologies have been suggested based on various data sets and methods. Results We present a fully resolved phylogeny for ursids based on ten complete mitochondrial genome sequences from all eight living and two recently extinct bear species, the European cave bear (Ursus spelaeus and the American giant short-faced bear (Arctodus simus. The mitogenomic data yield a well-resolved topology for ursids, with the sloth bear at the basal position within the genus Ursus. The sun bear is the sister taxon to both the American and Asian black bears, and this clade is the sister clade of cave bear, brown bear and polar bear confirming a recent study on bear mitochondrial genomes. Conclusion Sequences from extinct bears represent the third and fourth Pleistocene species for which complete mitochondrial genomes have been sequenced. Moreover, the cave bear specimen demonstrates that mitogenomic studies can be applied to Pleistocene fossils that have not been preserved in permafrost, and therefore have a broad application within ancient DNA research. Molecular dating of the mtDNA divergence times suggests a rapid radiation of bears in both the Old and New Worlds around 5 million years ago, at the Miocene-Pliocene boundary. This coincides with major global changes, such as the Messinian crisis and the first opening of the Bering Strait, and suggests a global influence of such events on species radiations.

  10. A cave response to environmental changes in the Late Pleistocene: a study of Budimirica Cave sediments, Macedonia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Temovski, M.; Pruner, Petr; Hercman, H.; Bosák, Pavel

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 69, č. 3 (2016), s. 307-316 ISSN 1330-030X Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : cave sediments * palaeoenvironmental changes * Late Pleistocene * Budimirica Cave * Macedonia Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 0.595, year: 2016 http://www. geologia -croatica.hr/ojs/index.php/GC

  11. Phylogeography of the common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus: Marked population structure, Neotropical Pleistocene vicariance and incongruence between nuclear and mtDNA markers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morgante João S

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The common vampire bat Desmodus rotundus is an excellent model organism for studying ecological vicariance in the Neotropics due to its broad geographic range and its preference for forested areas as roosting sites. With the objective of testing for Pleistocene ecological vicariance, we sequenced a mitocondrial DNA (mtDNA marker and two nuclear markers (RAG2 and DRB to try to understand how Pleistocene glaciations affected the distribution of intraspecific lineages in this bat. Results Five reciprocally monophyletic clades were evident in the mitochondrial gene tree, and in most cases with high bootstrap support: Central America (CA, Amazon and Cerrado (AMC, Pantanal (PAN, Northern Atlantic Forest (NAF and Southern Atlantic Forest (SAF. The Atlantic forest clades formed a monophyletic clade with high bootstrap support, creating an east/west division for this species in South America. On the one hand, all coalescent and non-coalescent estimates point to a Pleistocene time of divergence between the clades. On the other hand, the nuclear markers showed extensive sharing of haplotypes between distant localities, a result compatible with male-biased gene flow. In order to test if the disparity between the mitochondrial and nuclear markers was due to the difference in mutation rate and effective size, we performed a coalescent simulation to examine the feasibility that, given the time of separation between the observed lineages, even with a gene flow rate close to zero, there would not be reciprocal monophyly for a neutral nuclear marker. We used the observed values of theta and an estimated mutation rate for the nuclear marker gene to perform 1000 iterations of the simulation. The results of this simulation were inconclusive: the number of iterations with and without reciprocal monophyly of one or more clades are similar. Conclusions We therefore conclude that the pattern exhibited by the common vampire bat, with marked

  12. Radiometric dating of the extinction of the large Pleistocene fauna in Peru

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Falgueres, C.; Fontugne, M.

    1994-01-01

    The discovery in northern Peru of fossil deposits belonging to large mammals allows the dating of the extinction of this fauna. The method based on disequilibrium within the uranium family ( 230 Th/ 234 U) was used. The extinction occurred at the end of the Pleistocene and is contemporaneous with the beginning of the deglaciation. Moreover, this dating, compared with results of excavations of palaeo-indian ''Paijan'' sites, indicates that human groups in Peru did not play a significant role in extinction of this large fauna. (authors). 26 refs., 1 tab

  13. "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?

  14. Seasonal Variability of Ground Water Levels in the Puszcza Zielonka Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grajewski Sylwester

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents results of studies on seasonal variability of ground water tables recorded in long-term observations of water levels in the Puszcza Zielonka forest complex. The Puszcza Zielonka Forest is located in the middle part of the Warta basin in the central part of the Wielkopolska region. Its western boundary is located approx. 6 km north-east of Poznań. The area is situated in the western part of the Wielkopolska-Mazovian climatic region. The natural landscape is of young glacial type of Pleistocene and Holocene formation. For this reason parent materials for soils in this area were mainly postglacial drifts, deposits coming from the Poznań stage of the Würm glaciation. In terms of granulometric composition these were mainly low clayey sands deposited on loose sands with an admixture of gravel and eroded sandy clay. Scots pine is the dominant species. Oaks, alders, larches and scarce spruces are also found in this area. Predominant sites include fresh mixed forest, fresh mixed coniferous forest, fresh broadleaved forest and alder swamp forest.

  15. Late Pleistocene and Holocene-Age Columbia River Sediments and Bedforms: Hanford Reach Area, Washington - Part 2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    K.R. Fecht, T.E. Marceau

    2006-03-28

    This report presents the results of a geologic study conducted on the lower slopes of the Columbia River Valley in south-central Washington. The study was designed to investigate glaciofluvial and fluvial sediments and bedforms that are present in the river valley and formed subsequent to Pleistocene large-scale cataclysmic flooding of the region.

  16. Pleistocene mitochondrial genomes suggest a single major dispersal of non-Africans and a Late Glacial population turnover in Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Posth, C.; Renaud, G.; Mittnik, A.; Drucker, D. G.; Rougier, H.; Cupillard, Ch.; Valentin, F.; Thevenet, C.; Furtwängler, A.; Wissing, Ch.; Francken, M.; Malina, M.; Bolus, M.; Lari, M.; Gigli, E.; Capecchi, G.; Crevecoeur, I.; Beauval, C.; Flas, D.; Germonpré, M.; Plicht van der, J.; Cottiaux, R.; Gély, B.; Ronchitelli, A.; Wehrberger, K.; Grigorescu, D.; Svoboda, Jiří; Semal, P.; Caramelli, D.; Bocherens, H.; Harvati, K.; Conard, N. J.; Haak, W.; Powell, A.; Krause, J.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 26, March 21 (2016), s. 827-833 ISSN 0960-9822 Institutional support: RVO:68081758 Keywords : mitochondrial genome * Pleistocene * Europe Subject RIV: AC - Archeology, Anthropology, Ethnology OBOR OECD: Archaeology Impact factor: 8.851, year: 2016

  17. 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

  18. A Pathological Late Pleistocene canid from San Sidero (Italy): implications for social- and feeding-behaviour

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iurino, Dawid Adam; Fico, Rosario; Petrucci, Mauro; Sardella, Raffaele

    2013-03-01

    Evidence of diseases on vertebrate fossil bones can provide detailed information on many aspects of extinct animals. This study focused on pathological craniodental remains (left maxilla and dentary) referred to the canid Cuon alpinus unearthed from a Late Pleistocene karst filling deposit at San Sidero (Apulia, southern Italy). These fossils show clear evidence of a chronic periodontitis that caused the animal's death. Clinical diagnosis of the disease and the timing of its development have been defined on the basis of a veterinary odontostomatology approach, in addition to radiographic and tomographic techniques. From the initiation of the infection until death, a time span of at least 6 months occurred, and three main steps have been defined: (1) the bacterial infections of the buccal cavity turning into severe periodontitis, (2) the fracture of the lower carnassial and (3) the loss of teeth due to the worsening infection that deformed and/or eroded maxillary and mandibular bones and enlarged alveoli. The analysis of the palaeopathology also provides information about the biomechanics of the bite, on the feeding behaviour and on the relationships of injured members in a pack of Late Pleistocene canids.

  19. The oldest gibbon fossil (Hylobatidae) from insular Southeast Asia: evidence from Trinil, (East Java, Indonesia), Lower/Middle Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingicco, Thomas; de Vos, John; Huffman, O Frank

    2014-01-01

    A fossil femur excavated by Eugène Dubois between 1891-1900 in the Lower/Middle Pleistocene bonebed of the Trinil site (Java, Indonesia) was recognised by us as that of a Hylobatidae. The specimen, Trinil 5703 of the Dubois Collection (Leiden, The Netherlands), has the same distinctive form of fossilization that is seen in many of the bonebed fossils from Trinil in the collection. Anatomical comparison of Trinil 5703 to a sample of carnivore and primate femora, supported by morphometric analyses, lead to the attribution of the fossil to gibbon. Trinil 5703 therefore provides the oldest insular record of this clade, one of the oldest known Hylobatidae fossils from Southeast Asia. Because living Hylobatidae only inhabit evergreen rain forests, the paleoenvironment within the river drainage in the greater Trinil area evidently included forests of this kind during the Lower/Middle Pleistocene as revealed here.

  20. Morphometric analysis of molars in a Middle Pleistocene population shows a mosaic of 'modern' and Neanderthal features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinón-Torres, María; Spěváčková, Petra; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Bruner, Emiliano; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Bermúdez de Castro, José María

    2013-10-01

    Previous studies of upper first molar (M1) crown shape have shown significant differences between Homo sapiens and Homo neanderthalensis that were already present in the European Middle Pleistocene populations, including the large dental sample from Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos (SH). Analysis of other M1 features such as the total crown base area, cusp proportions, cusp angles and occlusal polygon have confirmed the differences between both lineages, becoming a useful tool for the taxonomic assignment of isolated teeth from Late Pleistocene sites. However, until now the pattern of expression of these variables has not been known for the SH sample. This fossil sample, the largest collection from the European Middle Pleistocene, is generally interpreted as being from the direct ancestors of Neanderthals, and thus is a reference sample for assessing the origin of the Neanderthal morphologies. Surprisingly, our study reveals that SH M(1) s present a unique mosaic of H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens features. Regarding the cusp angles and the relative occlusal polygon area, SH matches the H. neanderthalensis pattern. However, regarding the total crown base area and relative cusps size, SH M(1) s are similar to H. sapiens, with a small crown area, a strong hypocone reduction and a protocone enlargement, although the protocone expansion in SH is significantly larger than in any other group studied. The SH dental sample calls into question the uniqueness of some so-called modern traits. Our study also sounds a note of caution on the use of M(1) occlusal morphology for the alpha taxonomy of isolated M(1) s. © 2013 Anatomical Society.

  1. A Late Pleistocene clockwise rotation phase of Zakynthos (Greece) and implications for the evolution of the western Aegean arc

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duermeijer, C.E.; Krijgsman, W.; Langereis, C.G.; Meulenkamp, J.E.; Triantaphyllou, M.V.; Zachariasse, W.J.

    1999-01-01

    Palaeomagnetic measurements have been carried out on Eocene to Pleistocene sediments on the Ionian island of Zakynthos, NW Greece. Magnetostratigraphic constraints, biostratigraphic analyses of planktonic foraminifera and calcareous nannofossils provide a reliable time frame for these deposits.

  2. Pleistocene corals of the Florida keys: Architects of imposing reefs - Why?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lidz, B.H.

    2006-01-01

    Five asymmetrical, discontinuous, stratigraphically successive Pleistocene reef tracts rim the windward platform margin off the Florida Keys. Built of large head corals, the reefs are imposing in relief (???30 m high by 1 km wide), as measured from seismic profiles. Well dated to marine oxygen isotope substages 5c, 5b, and 5a, corals at depth are inferred to date to the Stage 6/5 transition. The size of these reefs attests to late Pleistocene conditions that repeatedly induced vigorous and sustained coral growth. In contrast, the setting today, linked to Florida Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, is generally deemed marginal for reef accretion. Incursion onto the reef tract of waters that contain seasonally inconsistent temperature, salinity, turbidity, and nutrient content impedes coral growth. Fluctuating sea level and consequent settings controlled deposition. The primary dynamic was position of eustatic zeniths relative to regional topographic elevations. Sea level during the past 150 ka reached a maximum of ???10.6 m higher than at present ???125 ka, which gave rise to an inland coral reef (Key Largo Limestone) and ooid complex (Miami Limestone) during isotope substage 5e. These formations now form the Florida Keys and a bedrock ridge beneath The Quicksands (Gulf of Mexico). High-precision radiometric ages and depths of dated corals indicate subsequent apices remained ???15 to 9 m, respectively, below present sea level. Those peaks provided accommodation space sufficient for vertical reef growth yet exposed a broad landmass landward of the reefs for >100 ka. With time, space, lack of bay waters, and protection from the Gulf of Mexico, corals thrived in clear oceanic waters of the Gulf Stream, the only waters to reach them.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Out of Africa: modern human origins special feature: middle and later Pleistocene hominins in Africa and Southwest Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rightmire, G Philip

    2009-09-22

    Approximately 700,000 years ago, Homo erectus in Africa was giving way to populations with larger brains accompanied by structural adjustments to the vault, cranial base, and face. Such early Middle Pleistocene hominins were not anatomically modern. Their skulls display strong supraorbital tori above projecting faces, flattened frontals, and less parietal expansion than is the case for Homo sapiens. Postcranial remains seem also to have archaic features. Subsequently, some groups evolved advanced skeletal morphology, and by ca. 200,000 years ago, individuals more similar to recent humans are present in the African record. These fossils are associated with Middle Stone Age lithic assemblages and, in some cases, Acheulean tools. Crania from Herto in Ethiopia carry defleshing cutmarks and superficial scoring that may be indicative of mortuary practices. Despite these signs of behavioral innovation, neither the Herto hominins, nor others from Late Pleistocene sites such as Klasies River in southern Africa and Skhūl/Qafzeh in Israel, can be matched in living populations. Skulls are quite robust, and it is only after approximately 35,000 years ago that people with more gracile, fully modern morphology make their appearance. Not surprisingly, many questions concerning this evolutionary history have been raised. Attention has centered on systematics of the mid-Pleistocene hominins, their paleobiology, and the timing of dispersals that spread H. sapiens out of Africa and across the Old World. In this report, I discuss structural changes characterizing the skulls from different time periods, possible regional differences in morphology, and the bearing of this evidence on recognizing distinct species.

  6. The Tetramerium lineage (Acanthaceae: Justicieae) does not support the Pleistocene Arc hypothesis for South American seasonally dry forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Côrtes, Ana Luiza A; Rapini, Alessandro; Daniel, Thomas F

    2015-06-01

    The Tetramerium lineage (Acanthaceae) presents a striking ecological structuring in South America, with groups concentrated in moist forests or in seasonally dry forests. In this study, we investigate the circumscription and relationships of the South American genera as a basis for better understanding historic interactions between dry and moist biomes in the Neotropics. We dated the ancestral distribution of the Tetramerium lineage based on one nuclear and four plastid DNA regions. Maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian inference analyses were performed for this study using 104 terminals. Phylogenetic divergences were dated using a relaxed molecular clock approach and ancestral distributions obtained from dispersal-vicariance analyses. The genera Pachystachys, Schaueria, and Thyrsacanthus are nonmonophyletic. A dry forest lineage dispersed from North America to South America and reached the southwestern part of the continent between the end of the Miocene and beginning of the Pleistocene. This period coincides with the segregation between Amazonian and Atlantic moist forests that established the geographic structure currently found in the group. The South American genera Pachystachys, Schaueria, and Thyrsacanthus need to be recircumscribed. The congruence among biogeographical events found for the Tetramerium lineage suggests that the dry forest centers currently dispersed throughout South America are relatively old remnants, probably isolated since the Neogene, much earlier than the Last Glacial Maximum postulated by the Pleistocene Arc hypothesis. In addition to exploring the Pleistocene Arc hypothesis, this research also informs evolution in a lineage with numerous geographically restricted and threatened species. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  7. Subglacial bed conditions during Late Pleistocene glaciations and their impact on ice dynamics in the southern North Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Passchier, S.; Laban, C.; Mesdag, C.S.; Rijsdijk, K.F.

    2010-01-01

    Changes in subglacial bed conditions through multiple glaciations and their effect on ice dynamics are addressed through an analysis of glacigenic sequences in the Upper Pleistocene stratigraphy of the southern North Sea basin. During Elsterian (MIS 12) ice growth, till deposition was subdued when

  8. 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

    Milankovitch theory proposes high-latitude summer insolation intensity paces the ice ages by controlling perennial snow cover amounts (Milankovitch, 1941). According to theory, the ~21 kyr cycle of precession should dominate the ice-volume records since it has the greatest influence on high-latitude summer insolation. Modeling experiments frequently support Milankovitch theory by attributing the majority of Northern Hemisphere high-latitude summer snowmelt to changes in the cycle of precession (e.g. Jackson and Broccoli, 2003). However, ice-volume proxy records, especially those of the Early Pleistocene (2.6-0.8 Ma), display variability with a period of ~41 kyr (Raymo and Lisiecki, 2005), indicative of insolation forcing from obliquity, which has a much smaller influence on summer insolation intensity than precession. Several hypotheses attempt to explain the discrepancies between Milkankovitch theory and the proxy records by invoking phenomena such as insolation gradients (Raymo and Nisancioglu, 2003), hemispheric offset (Raymo et al., 2006; Lee and Poulsen, 2009), and integrated summer energy (Huybers, 2006); however, all of these hypotheses contain caveats (Ruddiman, 2006) and have yet to be supported by modeling studies that use a complex GCM. To explore potential solutions to this '41 kyr problem,' we use an Earth system model composed of the GENESIS GCM and Land Surface model, the BIOME4 vegetation model, and the Pennsylvania State ice-sheet model. Using an asynchronous coupling technique, we run four idealized transient combinations of obliquity and precession, representing the orbital extremes of the Pleistocene (Berger and Loutre, 1991). Each experiment is run through several complete orbital cycles with a dynamic ice domain spanning North America and Greenland, and fixed preindustrial greenhouse-gas concentrations. For all orbital configurations, model results produce greater ice-volume spectral power at the frequency of obliquity despite significantly

  9. Sediment storage and transport in Pancho Rico Valley during and after the Pleistocene-Holocene transition, Coast Ranges of central California (Monterey County)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, A.F.; Mahan, S.A.

    2009-01-01

    Factors influencing sediment transport and storage within the 156??6 km2 drainage basin of Pancho Rico Creek (PRC), and sediment transport from the PRC drainage basin to its c. 11000 km2 mainstem drainage (Salinas River) are investigated. Numeric age estimates are determined by optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating on quartz grains from three sediment samples collected from a 'quaternary terrace a (Qta)' PRC terrace/PRC-tributary fan sequence, which consists dominantly of debris flow deposits overlying fluvial sediments. OSL dating results, morphometric analyses of topography, and field results indicate that the stormy climate of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition caused intense debris-flow erosion of PRC- tributary valleys. However, during that time, the PRC channel was backfilled by Qta sediment, which indicates that there was insufficient discharge in PRC to transport the sediment load produced by tributary-valley denudation. Locally, Salinas Valley alluvial stratigraphy lacks any record of hillslope erosion occurring during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition, in that the alluvial fan formed where PRC enters the Salinas Valley lacks lobes correlative to Qta. This indicates that sediment stripped from PRC tributaries was mostly trapped in Pancho Rico Valley despite the relatively moist climate of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Incision into Qta did not occur until PRC enlarged its drainage basin by c. 50% through capture of the upper part of San Lorenzo Creek, which occurred some time after the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. During the relatively dry Holocene, PRC incision through Qta and into bedrock, as well as delivery of sediment to the San Ardo Fan, were facilitated by the discharge increase associated with stream-capture. The influence of multiple mechanisms on sediment storage and transport in the Pancho Rico Valley-Salinas Valley system exemplifies the complexity that (in some instances) must be recognized in order to correctly

  10. Paleohydrology of the southern Great Basin, with special reference to water table fluctuations beneath the Nevada Test Site during the late(?) Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winograd, Isaac Judah; Doty, Gene C.

    1980-01-01

    Knowledge of the magnitude of water-table rise during Pleistocene pluvial climates, and of the resultant shortening of groundwater flow path and reduction in unsaturated zone thickness, is mandatory for a technical evaluation of the Nevada Test Site (NTS) or other arid zone sites as repositories for high-level or transuranic radioactive wastes. The distribution of calcitic veins filling fractures in alluvium, and of tufa deposits between the Ash Meadows spring discharge area and the Nevada Test Site indicates that discharge from the regional Paleozoic carbonate aquifer during the Late( ) Pleistocene pluvial periods may have occurred at an altitude about 50 meters higher than at present and 14 kilometers northeast of Ash Meadows. Use of the underflow equation (relating discharge to transmissivity, aquifer width, and hydraulic gradient), and various assumptions regarding pluvial recharge, transmissivity, and altitude of groundwater base level, suggest possible rises in potentiometric level in the carbonate aquifer of about -90 meters beneath central Frenchman Flat. During Wisconsin time the rise probably did not exceed 30 meters. Water-level rises beneath Frenchman Flat during future pluvials are unlikely to exceed 30 meters and might even be 10 meters lower than modern levels. Neither the cited rise in potentiometric level in the regional carbonate aquifer, nor the shortened flow path during the Late( ) Pleistocene preclude utilization of the NTS as a repository for high-level or transuranic-element radioactive wastes provided other requisite conditions are met as this site. Deep water tables, attendant thick (up to several hundred meter) unsaturated zones, and long groundwater flow paths characterized the region during the Wisconsin Stage and probably throughout the Pleistocene Epoch and are likely to so characterize it during future glacial periods. (USGS)

  11. Pleistocene Brawley and Ocotillo Formations: Evidence for initial strike-slip deformation along the San Felipe and San Jacinto fault zonez, Southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirby, S.M.; Janecke, S.U.; Dorsey, R.J.; Housen, B.A.; Langenheim, V.E.; McDougall, K.A.; Steeley, A.N.

    2007-01-01

    We examine the Pleistocene tectonic reorganization of the Pacific-North American plate boundary in the Salton Trough of southern California with an integrated approach that includes basin analysis, magnetostratigraphy, and geologic mapping of upper Pliocene to Pleistocene sedimentary rocks in the San Felipe Hills. These deposits preserve the earliest sedimentary record of movement on the San Felipe and San Jacinto fault zones that replaced and deactivated the late Cenozoic West Salton detachment fault. Sandstone and mudstone of the Brawley Formation accumulated between ???1.1 and ???0.6-0.5 Ma in a delta on the margin of an arid Pleistocene lake, which received sediment from alluvial fans of the Ocotillo Formation to the west-southwest. Our analysis indicates that the Ocotillo and Brawley formations prograded abruptly to the east-northeast across a former mud-dominated perennial lake (Borrego Formation) at ???1.1 Ma in response to initiation of the dextral-oblique San Felipe fault zone. The ???25-km-long San Felipe anticline initiated at about the same time and produced an intrabasinal basement-cored high within the San Felipe-Borrego basin that is recorded by progressive unconformities on its north and south limbs. A disconformity at the base of the Brawley Formation in the eastern San Felipe Hills probably records initiation and early blind slip at the southeast tip of the Clark strand of the San Jacinto fault zone. Our data are consistent with abrupt and nearly synchronous inception of the San Jacinto and San Felipe fault zones southwest of the southern San Andreas fault in the early Pleistocene during a pronounced southwestward broadening of the San Andreas fault zone. The current contractional geometry of the San Jacinto fault zone developed after ???0.5-0.6 Ma during a second, less significant change in structural style. ?? 2007 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

  12. Towards an Integrated Geomagnetic Polarity Reversal Timescale for the Pleistocene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rivera, Tiffany; Storey, Michael; Kuiper, Klaudia

    The development of the geomagnetic polarity timescale (GPTS) in the mid 20th century led to the greater understanding of seafloor spreading and plate tectonics (Heirtzler et al., 1968). Over 40 years later, the GPTS continues to be refined, particularly in terms of integrating multiple dating...... minerals. Each of these ages is then compared to independent astronomical ages for the events in order to define tie-points for constructing a Pleistocene a multi-chronometer GPTS. Although only three reversals are addressed here, the methodology applied shows promise to refining short-lived excursions...... to enable further understanding of the wavering magnetic field. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community's Seventh Framework Programme [FP7/2007-2013] under grant agreement no. 215458....

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Radiocarbon dating of extinct fauna in the Americas recovered from tar pits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jull, A.J.T.; Iturralde-Vinent, M.; O'Malley, J.M.; MacPhee, R.D.E.; McDonald, H.G.; Martin, P.S.; Moody, J.; Rincon, A.

    2004-01-01

    We have obtained radiocarbon dates by accelerator mass spectrometry on bones of extinct large mammals from tar pits. Results on some samples of Glyptodon and Holmesina (extinct large mammals similar to armadillos) yielded ages of >25 and >21 ka, respectively. We also studied the radiocarbon ages of three different samples of bones from the extinct Cuban ground sloth, Parocnus bownii, which yielded dates ranging from 4960 ± 280 to 11 880 ± 420 yr BP. In order to remove the tar component pretreat the samples sufficiently to obtain reliable dates, we cleaned the samples by Soxhlet extraction in benzene. Resulting samples of collagenous material were often small

  17. Direct U-series analysis of the Lezetxiki humerus reveals a Middle Pleistocene age for human remains in the Basque Country (northern Iberia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    de-la-Rúa, Concepción; Altuna, Jesús; Hervella, Monserrat; Kinsley, Leslie; Grün, Rainer

    2016-04-01

    In 1964, a human humerus was found in a sedimentary deposit in Lezetxiki Cave (Basque Country, northern Iberia). The first studies on the stratigraphy, associated mammal faunal remains and lithic implements placed the deposits containing the humerus into the Riss glacial stage. Direct chronometric evidence has so far been missing, and the previous chronostratigraphic framework and faunal dating gave inconsistent results. Here we report laser ablation U-series analyses on the humerus yielding a minimum age of 164 ± 9 ka, corresponding to MIS 6. This is the only direct dating analysis of the Lezetxiki humerus and confirms a Middle Pleistocene age for this hominin fossil. Morphometric analyses suggest that the Lezetxiki humerus has close affinities to other Middle Pleistocene archaic hominins, such as those from La Sima de los Huesos at Atapuerca. This emphasizes the significance of the Lezetxiki fossil within the populations that predate the Neanderthals in south-western Europe. It is thus an important key fossil for the understanding of human evolution in Europe during the Middle Pleistocene, a time period when a great morphological diversity is observed but whose phylogenetic meaning is not yet fully understood. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Cross-sectional properties of the lower limb long bones in the Middle Pleistocene Sima de los Huesos sample (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, Laura; Carretero, José Miguel; García-González, Rebeca; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2018-04-01

    The recovery to date of three complete and five partial femora, seven complete tibiae, and four complete fibulae from the Atapuerca Sima de los Huesos site provides an opportunity to analyze the biomechanical cross-sectional properties in this Middle Pleistocene population and to compare them with those of other fossil hominins and recent modern humans. We have performed direct comparisons of the cross-sectional geometric parameters and reduced major axis (RMA) regression lines among different samples. We have determined that Atapuerca Sima de los Huesos (SH) fossils have significantly thicker cortices than those of recent modern humans for the three leg bones at all diaphyseal levels, except that of the femur at 35% of biomechanical length. The SH bones are similar to those of Neandertals and Middle Pleistocene humans and different from Homo sapiens in their diaphyseal cross-sectional shape and strength parameters. When standardized by estimated body size, both the SH and Neandertal leg bones have in general greater strength than those of H. sapiens from the early modern (EMH), Upper Paleolithic (UP), and recent populations (RH). The Sima de los Huesos human leg bones have, in general terms, an ancestral pattern similar to that of Pleistocene humans and differing from H. sapiens. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Timing of Pleistocene glaciations in the High Atlas, Morocco: New 10Be and 36Cl exposure ages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Philip D.; Fink, David; Rodés, Ángel; Fenton, Cassandra R.; Fujioka, Toshiyuki

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents data from 42 new samples yielding Late Pleistocene cosmogenic 10Be and 36Cl exposure ages of moraine boulders across a series of glaciated valleys in the Toubkal Massif (4167 m a.s.l.), High Atlas, Morocco. This represents the first comprehensive Pleistocene glacial chronology in North Africa and one of the largest datasets from the Mediterranean region. The timing of these glacier advances has major implications for understanding the influence of Atlantic depressions on moisture supply to North Africa and the Mediterranean basin during the Pleistocene. The oldest and lowest moraines which span elevations from ∼1900 to 2400 m a.s.l. indicate that the maximum glacier advance occurred from MIS 5 to 3 with a combined mean 10Be and 36Cl age of 50.2 ± 19.5 ka (1 SD; n = 12, 7 outliers). The next moraine units up-valley at higher elevations (∼2200-2600 m a.s.l.) yielded exposure ages close to the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) with a combined mean 10Be and 36Cl age of 22.0 ± 4.9 ka (1 SD; n = 9, 7 outliers). The youngest exposure ages are from moraines that were emplaced during the Younger Dryas with a combined mean 10Be and 36Cl age of 12.3 ± 0.9 ka (1 SD; n = 7, no outliers) and are found in cirques at the highest elevations ranging from ∼2900 to 3300 m a.s.l. From moraines predating the Younger Dryas, a large number of young outliers are spread evenly between 6 and 13 ka suggesting a continuing process of exhumation or repositioning of boulders during the early to mid-Holocene. This attests to active seismic processes and possibly intense erosion during this period.

  20. Postcranial morphology of the middle Pleistocene humans from Sima de los Huesos, Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Carretero, José-Miguel; Lorenzo, Carlos; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Pablos, Adrián; Rodríguez, Laura; García-González, Rebeca; Bonmatí, Alejandro; Quam, Rolf M; Pantoja-Pérez, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Aranburu, Arantza; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Poza-Rey, Eva; Sala, Nohemi; García, Nuria; Alcázar de Velasco, Almudena; Cuenca-Bescós, Gloria; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-09-15

    Current knowledge of the evolution of the postcranial skeleton in the genus Homo is hampered by a geographically and chronologically scattered fossil record. Here we present a complete characterization of the postcranium of the middle Pleistocene paleodeme from the Sima de los Huesos (SH) and its paleobiological implications. The SH hominins show the following: (i) wide bodies, a plesiomorphic character in the genus Homo inherited from their early hominin ancestors; (ii) statures that can be found in modern human middle-latitude populations that first appeared 1.6-1.5 Mya; and (iii) large femoral heads in some individuals, a trait that first appeared during the middle Pleistocene in Africa and Europe. The intrapopulational size variation in SH shows that the level of dimorphism was similar to modern humans (MH), but the SH hominins were less encephalized than Neandertals. SH shares many postcranial anatomical features with Neandertals. Although most of these features appear to be either plesiomorphic retentions or are of uncertain phylogenetic polarity, a few represent Neandertal apomorphies. Nevertheless, the full suite of Neandertal-derived features is not yet present in the SH population. The postcranial evidence is consistent with the hypothesis based on the cranial morphology that the SH hominins are a sister group to the later Neandertals. Comparison of the SH postcranial skeleton to other hominins suggests that the evolution of the postcranium occurred in a mosaic mode, both at a general and at a detailed level.

  1. 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.

  2. MicroEcos: Micro-Scale Explorations of Large-Scale Late Pleistocene Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gellis, B. S.

    2017-12-01

    Pollen data can inform the reconstruction of early-floral environments by providing data for artistic representations of what early-terrestrial ecosystems looked like, and how existing terrestrial landscapes have evolved. For example, what did the Bighorn Basin look like when large ice sheets covered modern Canada, the Yellowstone Plateau had an ice cap, and the Bighorn Mountains were mantled with alpine glaciers? MicroEcos is an immersive, multimedia project that aims to strengthen human-nature connections through the understanding and appreciation of biological ecosystems. Collected pollen data elucidates flora that are visible in the fossil record - associated with the Late-Pleistocene - and have been illustrated and described in botanical literature. It aims to make scientific data accessible and interesting to all audiences through a series of interactive-digital sculptures, large-scale photography and field-based videography. While this project is driven by scientific data, it is rooted in deeply artistic and outreach-based practices, which include broad artistic practices, e.g.: digital design, illustration, photography, video and sound design. Using 3D modeling and printing technology MicroEcos centers around a series of 3D-printed models of the Last Canyon rock shelter on the Wyoming and Montana border, Little Windy Hill pond site in Wyoming's Medicine Bow National Forest, and Natural Trap Cave site in Wyoming's Big Horn Basin. These digital, interactive-3D sculpture provide audiences with glimpses of three-dimensional Late-Pleistocene environments, and helps create dialogue of how grass, sagebrush, and spruce based ecosystems form. To help audiences better contextualize how MicroEcos bridges notions of time, space, and place, modern photography and videography of the Last Canyon, Little Windy Hill and Natural Trap Cave sites surround these 3D-digital reconstructions.

  3. Morphometric analysis of molars in a Middle Pleistocene population shows a mosaic of ‘modern’ and Neanderthal features

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinón-Torres, María; Spěváčková, Petra; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Bruner, Emiliano; Arsuaga, Juan Luis; Bermúdez de Castro, José María

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of upper first molar (M1) crown shape have shown significant differences between Homo sapiens and Homo neanderthalensis that were already present in the European Middle Pleistocene populations, including the large dental sample from Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos (SH). Analysis of other M1 features such as the total crown base area, cusp proportions, cusp angles and occlusal polygon have confirmed the differences between both lineages, becoming a useful tool for the taxonomic assignment of isolated teeth from Late Pleistocene sites. However, until now the pattern of expression of these variables has not been known for the SH sample. This fossil sample, the largest collection from the European Middle Pleistocene, is generally interpreted as being from the direct ancestors of Neanderthals, and thus is a reference sample for assessing the origin of the Neanderthal morphologies. Surprisingly, our study reveals that SH M1s present a unique mosaic of H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens features. Regarding the cusp angles and the relative occlusal polygon area, SH matches the H. neanderthalensis pattern. However, regarding the total crown base area and relative cusps size, SH M1s are similar to H. sapiens, with a small crown area, a strong hypocone reduction and a protocone enlargement, although the protocone expansion in SH is significantly larger than in any other group studied. The SH dental sample calls into question the uniqueness of some so-called modern traits. Our study also sounds a note of caution on the use of M1 occlusal morphology for the alpha taxonomy of isolated M1s. PMID:23914934

  4. Leafcutter bee nests and pupae from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits of Southern California: implications for understanding the paleoenvironment of the Late Pleistocene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna R Holden

    Full Text Available The Rancho La Brea Tar Pits is the world's richest and most important Late Pleistocene fossil locality and best renowned for numerous fossil mammals and birds excavated over the past century. Less researched are insects, even though these specimens frequently serve as the most valuable paleoenvironemental indicators due to their narrow climate restrictions and life cycles. Our goal was to examine fossil material that included insect-plant associations, and thus an even higher potential for significant paleoenviromental data. Micro-CT scans of two exceptionally preserved leafcutter bee nest cells from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles, California reveal intact pupae dated between ∼23,000-40,000 radiocarbon years BP. Here identified as best matched to Megachile (Litomegachile gentilis Cresson (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae based on environmental niche models as well as morphometrics, the nest cells (LACMRLP 388E document rare preservation and life-stage. The result of complex plant-insect interactions, they offer new insights into the environment of the Late Pleistocene in southern California. The remarkable preservation of the nest cells suggests they were assembled and nested in the ground where they were excavated. The four different types of dicotyledonous leaves used to construct the cells were likely collected in close proximity to the nest and infer a wooded or riparian habitat with sufficient pollen sources for larval provisions. LACMRLP 388E is the first record of fossil Megachile Latreille cells with pupae. Consequently, it provides a pre-modern age location for a Nearctic group, whose phylogenetic relationships and biogeographic history remain poorly understood. Megachile gentilis appears to respond to climate change as it has expanded its distribution across elevation gradients over time as estimated by habitat suitability comparisons between low and high elevations; it currently inhabits mesic habitats which occurred at a lower

  5. Leafcutter bee nests and pupae from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits of Southern California: implications for understanding the paleoenvironment of the Late Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holden, Anna R; Koch, Jonathan B; Griswold, Terry; Erwin, Diane M; Hall, Justin

    2014-01-01

    The Rancho La Brea Tar Pits is the world's richest and most important Late Pleistocene fossil locality and best renowned for numerous fossil mammals and birds excavated over the past century. Less researched are insects, even though these specimens frequently serve as the most valuable paleoenvironemental indicators due to their narrow climate restrictions and life cycles. Our goal was to examine fossil material that included insect-plant associations, and thus an even higher potential for significant paleoenviromental data. Micro-CT scans of two exceptionally preserved leafcutter bee nest cells from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles, California reveal intact pupae dated between ∼23,000-40,000 radiocarbon years BP. Here identified as best matched to Megachile (Litomegachile) gentilis Cresson (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae) based on environmental niche models as well as morphometrics, the nest cells (LACMRLP 388E) document rare preservation and life-stage. The result of complex plant-insect interactions, they offer new insights into the environment of the Late Pleistocene in southern California. The remarkable preservation of the nest cells suggests they were assembled and nested in the ground where they were excavated. The four different types of dicotyledonous leaves used to construct the cells were likely collected in close proximity to the nest and infer a wooded or riparian habitat with sufficient pollen sources for larval provisions. LACMRLP 388E is the first record of fossil Megachile Latreille cells with pupae. Consequently, it provides a pre-modern age location for a Nearctic group, whose phylogenetic relationships and biogeographic history remain poorly understood. Megachile gentilis appears to respond to climate change as it has expanded its distribution across elevation gradients over time as estimated by habitat suitability comparisons between low and high elevations; it currently inhabits mesic habitats which occurred at a lower elevation during

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Dental size variation in the Atapuerca-SH Middle Pleistocene hominids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Sarmiento, S; Cunha, E; Rosas, A; Bastir, M

    2001-09-01

    The Middle Pleistocene Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos (SH) site in Spain has yielded the largest sample of fossil hominids so far found from a single site and belonging to the same biological population. The SH dental sample includes a total of 452 permanent and deciduous teeth, representing a minimum of 27 individuals. We present a study of the dental size variation in these hominids, based on the analysis of the mandibular permanent dentition: lateral incisors, n=29; canines, n=27; third premolars, n=30; fourth premolars, n=34; first molars, n=38; second molars, n=38. We have obtained the buccolingual diameter and the crown area (measured on occlusal photographs) of these teeth, and used the bootstrap method to assess the amount of variation in the SH sample compared with the variation of a modern human sample from the Museu Antropologico of the Universidade of Coimbra (Portugal). The SH hominids have, in general terms, a dental size variation higher than that of the modern human sample. The analysis is especially conclusive for the canines. Furthermore, we have estimated the degree of sexual dimorphism of the SH sample by obtaining male and female dental subsamples by means of sexing the large sample of SH mandibular specimens. We obtained the index of sexual dimorphism (ISD=male mean/female mean) and the values were compared with those obtained from the sexed modern human sample from Coimbra, and with data found in the literature concerning several recent human populations. In all tooth classes the ISD of the SH hominids was higher than that of modern humans, but the differences were generally modest, except for the canines, thus suggesting that canine size sexual dimorphism in Homo heidelbergensis was probably greater than that of modern humans. Since the approach of sexing fossil specimens has some obvious limitations, these results should be assessed with caution. Additional data from SH and other European Middle Pleistocene sites would be necessary to test

  9. Magnetic minerals in Pliocene and Pleistocene marine marls from Southern Italy : rock magnetic properties and alteration during thermal demagnetization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Velzen, A.J.

    1994-01-01

    The rock magnetic properties of two different Pliocene to Pleistocene marine marls from southern Italy are studied. Different conditions during sedimentation have led to two completely different magnetic mineralogies in these marls. Chapters 2, 3 and 4 examine the rock magnetic properties of the

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Parallels between playbacks and Pleistocene tar seeps suggest sociality in an extinct sabretooth cat, Smilodon

    OpenAIRE

    Carbone, Chris; Maddox, Tom; Funston, Paul J.; Mills, Michael G.L.; Grether, Gregory F.; Van Valkenburgh, Blaire

    2008-01-01

    Inferences concerning the lives of extinct animals are difficult to obtain from the fossil record. Here we present a novel approach to the study of extinct carnivores, using a comparison between fossil records (n=3324) found in Late Pleistocene tar seeps at Rancho La Brea in North America and counts (n=4491) from playback experiments used to estimate carnivore abundance in Africa. Playbacks and tar seep deposits represent competitive, potentially dangerous encounters where multiple predators ...

  13. An Arctic perspective on dating Mid-Late Pleistocene environmental history

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alexanderson, Helena; Backman, Jan; Cronin, Thomas M.

    2014-01-01

    we discuss, from an Arctic perspective, methods and correlation tools that are commonly used to date Arctic Pleistocene marine and terrestrial events. We review the state of the art of Arctic geochronology, with focus on factors that affect the possibility and quality of dating, and support...... this overview by examples of application of modern dating methods to Arctic terrestrial and marine sequences. Event stratigraphy and numerical ages are important tools used in the Arctic to correlate fragmented terrestrial records and to establish regional stratigraphic schemes. Age control is commonly provided...... of these proxies reveal cyclical patterns that provide a basis for astronomical tuning. Recent advances in dating technology, calibration and age modelling allow for measuring smaller quantities of material and to more precisely date previously undatable material (i.e. foraminifera for 14C, and single...

  14. TFTR grounding scheme and ground-monitor system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Viola, M.

    1983-01-01

    The Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor (TFTR) grounding system utilizes a single-point ground. It is located directly under the machine, at the basement floor level, and is tied to the building perimeter ground. Wired to this single-point ground, via individual 500 MCM insulated cables, are: the vacuum vessel; four toroidal field coil cases/inner support structure quadrants; umbrella structure halves; the substructure ring girder; radial beams and columns; and the diagnostic systems. Prior to the first machine operation, a ground-loop removal program was initiated. It required insulation of all hangers and supports (within a 35-foot radius of the center of the machine) of the various piping, conduits, cable trays, and ventilation systems. A special ground-monitor system was designed and installed. It actively monitors each of the individual machine grounds to insure that there are no inadvertent ground loops within the machine structure or its ground and that the machine grounds are intact prior to each pulse. The TFTR grounding system has proven to be a very manageable system and one that is easy to maintain

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  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. 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.

  18. Ground-water flow and quality, and geochemical processes, in Indian Wells Valley, Kern, Inyo, and San Bernardino counties, California, 1987-88

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berenbrock, Charles; Schroeder, R.A.

    1994-01-01

    An existing water-quality data base for the 300- square-mile Indian Wells Valley was updated by means of chemical and isotopic analysis of ground water. The wide range in measured concentrations of major ions and of minor constituents such as fluoride, borate, nitrate, manganese, and iron is attributed to geochemical reactions within lacustrine deposits of the valley floor. These reactions include sulfate reduction accompanied by generation of alkalinity, precipitation of carbonates, exchange of aqueous alkaline-earth ions for sodium on clays, and dissolution of evaporite minerals. Differences in timing and location of recharge, which originates primarily in the Sierra Nevada to the west, and evapotranspiration from a shallow water table on the valley floor result in a wide range in ratios of stable hydrogen and oxygen isotopes. As ground water moves from alluvium into lustrine deposits of the ancestral China Lake, dissolved-solids concen- trations increase from about 200 to more than 1,000 milligrams per liter; further large increases to several thousand milligrams per liter occur beneath the China Lake playa. Historical data show an increase during the past 20 years in dissolved- solids concentration in several wells in the principal pumping areas at Ridgecrest and between Ridgecrest and Inyokern. The increase apparently is caused by induced flow of saline ground water from nearby China, Mirror, and Satellite Lakes. A simplified advective-transport model calculates ground-water travel times between parts of the valley of at least several thousand years, indi- cating the presence of old ground water. A local ground-water line and an evaporation line estimated using isotopic data from the China Lake area inter- sect at a delta-deuterium value of about -125 permil. This indicates that late Pleistocene recharge was 15 to 35 permil more negative than current recharge.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. The late Pleistocene glacial sequence in the middle Maruia valley, southeast Nelson, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mabin, M.C.G.

    1983-01-01

    Glacial and fluvioglacial landforms and deposits preserved in the middle reaches of the Maruia valley, southeast Nelson, New Zealand, record the activity of the Maruia glacier during the late Pleistocene Otira Glaciation. Five advances are recognised, from oldest to youngest: Creighton 1, 2, 3, and the Reid Stream 1, 2 advances. There was an interstadial interval between the Creighton 3 and Reid Stream 1 advances. The Reid Stream 1 advance occurred shortly after 14 800 years B.P. (NZ536, old T/sub 0.5/). (auths)

  2. Ground-water and geohydrologic conditions in Queens County, Long Island, New York

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soren, Julian

    1971-01-01

    Queens County is a heavily populated borough of New York City, at the western end of Long Island, N. Y., in which large amounts of ground water are used, mostly for public supply. Ground water, pumped from local aquifers, by privately owned water-supply companies, supplied the water needs of about 750,000 of the nearly 2 million residents of the county in 1967; the balance was supplied by New York City from surface sources outside the county in upstate New York. The county's aquifers consist of sand and gravel of Late Cretaceous and of Pleistocene ages, and the aquifers comprise a wedge-shaped ground-water reservoir lying on a southeastward-sloping floor of Precambrian(?) bedrock. Beds of clay and silt generally confine water in the deeper parts of the reservoir; water in the deeper aquifers ranges from poorly confined to well confined. Wisconsin-age glacial deposits in the uppermost part of the reservoir contain ground water under water-table conditions. Ground water pumpage averaged about 60 mgd (million gallons per day) in Queens County from about 1900 to 1967. Much of the water was used in adjacent Kings County, another borough of New York City, prior to 1950. The large ground-water withdrawal has resulted in a wide-spread and still-growing cone of depression in the water table, reflecting a loss of about 61 billion gallons of fresh water from storage. Significant drawdown of the water table probably began with rapid urbanization of Queens County in the 1920's. The county has been extensively paved, and storm and sanitary sewers divert water, which formerly entered the ground, to tidewater north and south of the county. Natural recharge to the aquifers has been reduced to about one half of the preurban rate and is below the withdrawal rate. Ground-water levels have declined more than 40. feet from the earliest-known levels, in 1903, to 1967, and the water table is below sea level in much of the county. The aquifers are being contaminated by the movement of

  3. 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.

  4. New evidences on the presence of Stegomastodon platensis Ameghino, 1888, Proboscidea: Gomphotheriidae, in the Late Pleistocene of Central Chile

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Labarca, R.; Alberdi, M.T.; Prado, J.L.; Mansilla, P.; Mourgues, F.A.

    2016-07-01

    This paper contextualizes, describes and taxonomically assigned cranial and dental Gomphotheriidae materials from the El Trebal 1, late Pleistocene form central Chile. Starting from metric and morphological variables fossils are included in Stegomastodon platensis. Taxonomic implications of this finding as well as some regional paleoenvironmental history are discussed. (Author)

  5. A taxonomic revision of the Pleistocene Hystrix (Hystricidae, Rodentia) from Eurasia with notes on the evolution of the family

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weers, van D.J.

    2005-01-01

    Measurements of many hundreds of the high-crowned cheek teeth of Hystrix specimens from the Euro-Asiatic Pleistocene in the collections of European and Asiatic institutions have been compared with extant species for a revision of the genus. A review is given about the extant genera and species of

  6. A new interpretation of forming process of marine pleistocene succession in the kanto tectonic basin

    OpenAIRE

    Kikuchi, Takao

    1996-01-01

    Relatively thick marine Pleistocene deposits, the Kazusa and the Shimosa Groups. are exposed in the Boso Peninsula, central Japan. It is generally said that the continuous tectonic subsidence of the Kanto Tectonic Basin causes such remarkable sedimentation. Especially the Shimosa Group consists of a succession of several formations controlled by glacio-eustasy. Besides, the Basin must have upheaved from deep sea during the Quaternary, because it is located on the wide uplift belt of the islan...

  7. The small mammals (Eulipotyphla, Chiroptera, Rodentia and Lagomorpha from the Late Pleistocene site of the cave of El Castillo (Cantabria, Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Sesé

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The micromammals remains from the Late Pleistocene site of the cave of El Castillo studied here in detail, came from the Aurignacian levels 18b and 18c (dated in 40.000-45.000 BP, level 19, and the Musterian levels 20b, 20c, 20d, 20e (dated in 41.000-49.000 BP, 21a and 21b. The micromammal association is the following: Erinaceus europaeus, Crocidura russula, Sorex coronatus, Sorex minutus, Neomys fodiens, Talpa europaea, Galemys pyrenaicus, cf. Miniopterus schreibersii, Chiroptera indet., Pliomys lenki, Microtus arvalis – Microtus agrestis, Microtus lusitanicus, Microtus oeconomus, Chionomys nivalis, Arvicola terrestris, Apodemus sylvaticus – Apodemus flavicollis and Lepus sp. Most of these species are in the present fauna of Cantabria, except Pliomys lenki that got extinct in the last third of the Upper Pleistocene, and Microtus oeconomus that disappeared from the Iberian Peninsula during the Holocene, in historical times, and is nowadays present in northern Euroasiatic regions. There is a great continuity of most of the taxa in all the levels. The faunal association seems to indicate a mainly open environment, in general with wet meadows (and few dry meadows, with good vegetation cover in the soil, with perhaps also some tree-covered areas, and some watercourses. The thermophiles indicators are very scarce, which could indicate that the climate could be a lesser temperate than other Upper Pleistocene periods and the present-day climate in the area.

  8. The earliest settlers of Mesoamerica date back to the late Pleistocene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Stinnesbeck

    Full Text Available Preceramic human skeletal remains preserved in submerged caves near Tulum in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, Mexico, reveal conflicting results regarding 14C dating. Here we use U-series techniques for dating a stalagmite overgrowing the pelvis of a human skeleton discovered in the submerged Chan Hol cave. The oldest closed system U/Th age comes from around 21 mm above the pelvis defining the terminus ante quem for the pelvis to 11311±370 y BP. However, the skeleton might be considerable older, probably as old as 13 ky BP as indicated by the speleothem stable isotope data. The Chan Hol individual confirms a late Pleistocene settling of Mesoamerica and represents one of the oldest human osteological remains in America.

  9. 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.

  10. Erosion by pleistocene continental ice sheets in the area of the Canadian Shield

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rutter, N.W.

    The principles, theory and knowledge on the behaviour of glaciers indicate that only confined glacier flow is a major erosional agent. Unconfined, areally flowing ice sheets such as those present over the Canadian Shield during the Pleistocene Period modified the landscape very little. The potential for deep glacial erosion in future glaciations over the Canadian Shield area is low. Nuclear waste disposal sites, based only upon potential glacial erosion, should be located a few hundred meters below the surface in competent, fractureless crystalline shield bedrock, in relatively reliefless terrain, a few hundred kilometers away from the Paleozoic boundary. (auth)

  11. 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)

  12. Didelphidae marsupials (Mammalia, Didelphimorphia from the Late Pleistocene deposit of the Gruta dos Moura Cave, northern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Villa Nova

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The present study acknowledges the diversity of fossil marsupials from the Gruta dos Moura cave, as well as environmental and climatic aspects during the Quaternary. The results show that this is the largest diversity of Pleistocene marsupials recorded in a single cave: Didelphis albiventris, D. aurita, Gracilinanus agilis, G. microtarsus, Marmosa murina, Monodelphis brevicaudata, M. domesticaand Sairadelphys tocantinensis. Furthermore, the described specimens are also part of the only fossil assemblage unequivocally referable to the late Pleistocene. Paleontological studies suggest an intimate association with dry and open environments with high abundance of water sources. Since most of the identified taxa are characteristic of open forests and gallery forests, this could represent the actual environment around the Gruta dos Moura cave. Recent studies identified sympatric occurrences between species from open and dry environments and species from humid forests that were identified among our material and are characteristic of humid regions. Therefore, these species could inhabit gallery forests and capons, or even ecotones, inside a dry and open environment. Moreover, the extinction of Sairadelphyscould also indicate that the climatic and environmental conditions changed or that the past environment was more heterogeneous than the current environment of the region.

  13. Taxonomic status and paleoecology of Rusingoryx atopocranion (Mammalia, Artiodactyla), an extinct Pleistocene bovid from Rusinga Island, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faith, J. Tyler; Choiniere, Jonah N.; Tryon, Christian A.; Peppe, Daniel J.; Fox, David L.

    2011-05-01

    Rusingoryx atopocranion is a poorly known extinct alcelaphine bovid, documented in Pleistocene deposits associated with Middle Stone Age artifacts on Rusinga Island, Kenya. Following its initial description, Rusingoryx was subsumed into Megalotragus, which includes the extinct giant wildebeests, on the basis of its cranial architecture. Renewed investigations of the Pleistocene deposits on Rusinga Island recovered a large sample of Rusingoryx specimens that provide new taxonomic and paleoecological insight. This study (1) reviews the morphological and phylogenetic evidence concerning the taxonomic status of Rusingoryx and (2) evaluates its paleoecology and dietary habits . The morphology and phylogenetic data indicate that Rusingoryx is distinct from Megalotragus; they likely shared a common ancestor in the late Pliocene. Ecomorphology and mesowear analysis point to a specialized grazing adaptation, and its association with arid-adapted ungulates suggests a preference for arid grasslands. The confirmation of Rusingoryx as a valid taxonomic entity, together with the presence of other extinct taxa (including Megalotragus) on Rusinga Island, suggests an increasingly complex pattern of ungulate biogeography and extinctions in the late Quaternary of East Africa. Rusingoryx appears to have been part of an arid-adapted faunal community that potentially persisted in East Africa until the onset of the Holocene.

  14. Plio-Pleistocene basanitic and melilititic series of the Bohemian Massif: K-Ar ages, major/trace element and Sr–Nd isotopic data

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ulrych, Jaromír; Ackerman, Lukáš; Balogh, K.; Hegner, E.; Jelínek, E.; Pécskay, Z.; Přichystal, A.; Upton, B. G. J.; Zimák, J.; Foltýnová, R.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 73, č. 4 (2013), s. 429-450 ISSN 0009-2819 Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : Bohemian Massif * Plio-Pleistocene * Basanite * Melilitite * K-Ar age * Magmatism * Sr–Nd isotopes Subject RIV: DD - Geochemistry Impact factor: 1.397, year: 2013

  15. General geology and ground-water resources of the island of Maui, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stearns, Harold T.; Macdonald, Gordon Andrew

    1942-01-01

    Maui, the second largest island in the Hawaiian group, is 48 miles long, 26 miles wide, and covers 728 square miles. The principal town is Wailuku. Sugar cane and pineapples are the principal crops. Water is used chiefly for irrigating cane. The purpose of the investigation was to study the geology and the ground-water resources of the island.Maui was built by two volcanoes. East Maui or Haleakala Volcano is 10,025 feet high and famous for its so-called crater, which is a section of Hawaii National Park. Evidence is given to show that it is the head of two amphitheater-headed valleys in which numerous secondary eruptions have occurred and that it is not a crater, caldera, or eroded caldera. West Maui is a deeply dissected volcano 5,788 feet high. The flat Isthmus connecting the two volcanoes was made by lavas from East Maui banking against the West Maui Mountains. Plate 1 shows the geology, wells, springs, and water-development tunnels. Plate 2 is a map and description of points of geologic interest along the main highways. Volcanic terms used in the report are briefly defined. A synopsis of the climate is included and a record of the annual rainfall at all stations is given also. Puu Kukui, on West Maui, has an average annual rainfall of 389 inches and it lies just six miles from Olowalu where only 2 inches of rain fell in 1928, the lowest ever recorded in the Hawaiian Islands. The second rainiest place in the Territory is Kuhiwa Gulch on East Maui where 523 inches fell during 1937. Rainfall averages 2,360 million gallons daily on East Maui and 580 on West Maui. Ground water at the point of use in months of low rainfall is worth about $120 per million gallons, which makes most undeveloped supplies valuable.The oldest rocks on East Maui are the very permeable primitive Honomanu basalts, which were extruded probably in Pliocene and early Pleistocene time from three rift zones. These rocks form a dome about 8,000 feet high and extend an unknown distance below sea

  16. Paleosecular Variation of Plio-Pleistocene Lavas from the Loiyangalani Region of Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opdyke, N. D.; Kent, D. V.; Huang, K.; Foster, D.; Patel, J.

    2008-12-01

    The data reported here is part of a study of Pliocene-Pleistocene lavas in Kenya to document the paleosecular variation and time-averaged geomagnetic field direction near to the Equator. We sampled 32 sites (10 oriented cores each) in lavas to the south and the northeast of Loiyangalani that are mapped and dated as Plio-Pleistocene in age (less than ~5 Ma) and associated with Mt. Kulal and the Longipi eruption centers. The samples from this collection were returned to the US, sliced into samples and progressively demagnetized using alternating field demagnetization. The Loiyangalani sites yielded excellent results and are seemingly unaffected by lightning, which seems to be infrequent at this latitude, in this arid environment; all but one site gave acceptable data with an alpha95 of 10° or less. There are 17 reverse sites (Dec = 183.4°, Inc = 0.9°, alpha95 = 6.7°) and 15 normal sites (Dec = 358.4°, Inc = -1.2°, alpha95 = 4.7°). The reversal test is positive suggesting that the normal and reverse polarity populations both represent a reasonable time average. The site means were combined yielding an overall mean direction of Dec = 1.1°, Inc = -1.1°, alpha95 = 4.1°. The inclination is shallower than expected for a geocentric axial dipole field (delta I = -6°); accordingly, the site VGPs give a mean pole position at Lon = 205.1° E, Lat = 86.8° N, Alpha95 = 3°, which is significantly far-sided with respect to the geographic axis. The angular standard deviation of the VGPs is 9.3°, which is a relatively low angular dispersion compared to most PSVL models such as Model G.

  17. 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...

  18. 3D Architecture and evolution of the Po Plain-Northern Adriatic Foreland basin during Plio-Pleistocene time

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  19. Do Pleistocene Glacial-Interglacial Cycles Control Methane Hydrate Formation? An Example from Green Canyon, Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oryan, B.; Malinverno, A.; Goldberg, D.; Fortin, W.

    2017-12-01

    Well GC955-H was drilled in the Green Canyon region under the Gulf of Mexico Gas Hydrates Joint Industry Project in 2009. Logging-while-drilling resistivity logs obtained at the well indicate that the saturation of gas hydrate varies between high and low values in an alternating fashion. This trend is observed from 180 to 360mbsf, depths that correspond to the Late Pleistocene. Similar gas hydrate saturation patterns have been observed in other Gulf of Mexico locations (Walker Ridge sites WR313-G and 313-H) in Late Pleistocene sediments. Our hypothesis is that these variations in saturation can be explained by sea level changes through time during glacial-interglacial cycles. A higher amount of organic matter is deposited and buried in the sediment column during glacial intervals when sea level is low. Microbes in the sediment column degrade organic matter and produce methane gas as a byproduct. Higher availability of organic matter in the sediment column can increase the concentration of methane in the sediment pore water and in turn lead to the formation of gas hydrate. We use a time-dependent numerical model of the formation of gas hydrate to test this hypothesis. The model predicts the volume and distribution of gas hydrates using mass balance equations. Model inputs include in situ porosity determined from bulk density logs; local thermal gradient estimated from the depth of the bottom of the gas hydrate stability zone in proximity to the well; and sedimentation rate determined using the biostratigraphy of an industry well in the vicinity of GC955-H. Initial results show a good match between gas hydrate saturation predicted by the model and resistivity logs obtained in the well. We anticipate that this correlation will establish whether a causal link exists between the saturation of gas hydrate in this reservoir and glacioeustatic sea level changes in the Late Pleistocene.

  20. Airborne gamma-ray spectrometer and magnetometer survey: Rockford quadrangle (IL). Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1981-01-01

    Eleven uranium anomalies meet the minimum statistical requirements as defined in Volume I. These anomalies are tabulated and are shown on the Uranium Anomaly Interpretation Map. Potassium (%K), equivalent Uranium (ppM eU), equivalent Thorium (ppM eTh), eU/eTh, eU,K, eTh/K, and magnetic pseudo-contour maps are presented in Appendix E. Stacked Profiles showing geologic strip maps along each flight-line, together with sensor data, and ancillary data are presented in Appendix F. All maps and profiles were prepared on a scale of 1:250,000, but have been reduced to 1:500,000 for presentation in Volume II. Anomaly No. 1 is over an area underlain by the Mackinaw member (Qhm) of the Pleistocene Henry formation. Anomaly No. 2 is over an area underlain by Pleistocene Cahokia Alluvium (Qc) and the Ogle Till member (Qgo) of the Glasford formation. Anomaly No. 3 is over an area underlain by the Ogle Till member (Qgo) of the Pleistocene age. Anomaly No. 4 is over an area underlain by Ordovician Galena Black River Dolomite (Og). Anomaly No. 5 is over an area underlain by the Mackinaw member (Qhm) of the Henry formation and the Capron Till member (Qwic) of the Winnebago formation of Pleistocene ages. Anomaly No. 6 is over an area underlain by the Windlow Till member (Qgw) of the Glasford formation of Pleistocene age. Anomaly No. 7 is over an area underlain by the Argyle Till member (Qwia) o the Winnebago formation of Pleistocene age. Anomaly No. 8 is over an area underlain by the Capron Till member (Qwic) of the Winnebago formation of Pleistocene age. Anomaly No. 9 is over an area underlain by the Pleistocene Carmi member (Qcl) of the Equality formation and undifferentiated ground moraine (Qug). Anomalies No. 10 and No. 11 are over areas underlain by undifferentiated ground moraine (Qug) of Pleistocene age

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Biochemical indicators for the bioavailability of organic carbon in ground water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapelle, F.H.; Bradley, P.M.; Goode, D.J.; Tiedeman, C.; Lacombe, P.J.; Kaiser, K.; Benner, R.

    2009-01-01

    The bioavailability of total organic carbon (TOC) was examined in ground water from two hydrologically distinct aquifers using biochemical indicators widely employed in chemical oceanography. Concentrations of total hydrolyzable neutral sugars (THNS), total hydrolyzable amino acids (THAA), and carbon-normalized percentages of TOC present as THNS and THAA (referred to as "yields") were assessed as indicators of bioavailability. A shallow coastal plain aquifer in Kings Bay, Georgia, was characterized by relatively high concentrations (425 to 1492 ??M; 5.1 to 17.9 mg/L) of TOC but relatively low THNS and THAA yields (???0.2%-1.0%). These low yields are consistent with the highly biodegraded nature of TOC mobilized from relatively ancient (Pleistocene) sediments overlying the aquifer. In contrast, a shallow fractured rock aquifer in West Trenton, New Jersey, exhibited lower TOC concentrations (47 to 325 ??M; 0.6 to 3.9 mg/L) but higher THNS and THAA yields (???1% to 4%). These higher yields were consistent with the younger, and thus more bioavailable, TOC being mobilized from modern soils overlying the aquifer. Consistent with these apparent differences in TOC bioavailability, no significant correlation between TOC and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), a product of organic carbon mineralization, was observed at Kings Bay, whereas a strong correlation was observed at West Trenton. In contrast to TOC, THNS and THAA concentrations were observed to correlate with DIC at the Kings Bay site. These observations suggest that biochemical indicators such as THNS and THAA may provide information concerning the bioavailability of organic carbon present in ground water that is not available from TOC measurements alone.

  4. Linking changes in Indonesian Throughflow dynamics with the Middle Pleistocene Transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrick, B.; Auer, G.; Christensen, B. A.; De Vleeschouwer, D.; Reuning, L.; Martinez-Garcia, A.; Haug, G. H.; Gallagher, S. J.; Fulthorpe, C.; Bogus, K.

    2016-12-01

    The Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT; 1.4 - 0.4 Ma) represents a fundamental shift in the Earth's climate state. While there is high-resolution data covering the MPT from globally distributed archives, only sparse evidence exists on changes in the heat exchange between the Pacific and Indian Oceans, representing a crucial part of the global thermohaline circulation. 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 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. Here 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. We reconstruct paleoenvironmental variability by combining XRF, organic geochemistry, ICP-MS, and XRD data with shipboard results, to reconstruct Leeuwin Current and ITF variability. High sedimentation rates ( 30 cm/ka) at Site U1460 provide the opportunity for high-resolution reconstruction of ITF variability during the MPT. 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. Stronger upwelling in turn indicates a reduction in ITF, and thus implies that the heat transport from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean significantly diminished during the MPT. Our results suggest, that reduced heat exchange via the ITF played a major role in forcing the climatic shift towards the 100-kyr icehouse world of the Pleistocene.

  5. Ancient DNA sequences point to a large loss of mitochondrial genetic diversity in the saiga antelope (Saiga tatarica) since the Pleistocene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campos, Paula; Kristensen, Tommy; Orlando, Ludovic Antoine Alexandre

    2010-01-01

    of the Soviet Union, after which its populations were reduced by over 95%. We have analysed the mitochondrial control region sequence variation of 27 ancient and 38 modern specimens, to assay how the species' genetic diversity has changed since the Pleistocene. Phylogenetic analyses reveal the existence of two...... well-supported, and clearly distinct, clades of saiga. The first, spanning a time range from >49,500 (14) C ybp to the present, comprises all the modern specimens and ancient samples from the Northern Urals, Middle Urals and Northeast Yakutia. The second clade is exclusive to the Northern Urals...... and includes samples dating from between 40,400 to 10,250 (14) C ybp. Current genetic diversity is much lower than that present during the Pleistocene, an observation that data modelling using serial coalescent indicates cannot be explained by genetic drift in a population of constant size. Approximate...

  6. 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

  7. Contribution of the 40Ar/39Ar method to improve Middle-Pleistocene archaeological/palaeontological sites from the Italian Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomade, Sebastien, ,, Dr.; Pereira, MSc. Alison; voinchet, Pierre, ,, Dr.; Bahain, Jean-Jacques, ,, Dr.; Aureli, Daniele, ,, Dr.; Arzarello, Marta, ,, Dr.; Anzidei, Anna-Paola, ,, Dr.; Biddittu, Italo, ,, Dr.; Bulgarelli, Maria-Grazia, ,, Dr.; Falguères, Christophe, ,, Dr.; Giaccio, Biagio, ,, Dr.; Guillou, Hervé, ,, Dr.; Manzi, Gorgio, ,, Dr.; Moncel, Marie-Hélène, ,, Dr.; Nicoud, Elisa, ,, Dr.; Pagli, Maria, ,, Dr.; Parenti, Fabio, ,, Dr.; Peretto, Carlo, ,, Dr.; Piperno, Marcello, ,, Dr.; Rocca, Roxane, ,, Dr.

    2017-04-01

    European Middle-Pleistocene archaeological and/or paleontological sites lack a unified and precise chronological framework. Despite recent efforts mostly focused on methods such as OSL, ESR/U-series or cosmogenic nuclides, the age of numerous sites from this period fundamentally still relies on qualitative and speculative palaeoenvironmental and/or palaeontological/palaeoanthropological considerations. The lack of robust chronologies, along with the scarcity of human fossils, prevent coherent correlations between European sites which in turn limits our understanding of human diffusion dynamics, understand techno-cultural evolution or correlate archaeological sites with palaeoclimatic and environmental records. With the goal of providing an accurate and precise chronological framework based on a multi-method approach, a research network including geochronologists, archaeologist and paleoanthropologists from various French and Italian institutions launched in 2010 a wide study of Middle-Pleistocene archaeological sites of central and southern Italy. This study combining the 39Ar/40Ar method with palaeo-dosimetric methods applied to European sites in the age range of 700 ka to 300 ka is unprecedented. In parallel, a large effort has been done to improve the regional Middle-Pleistocene tephrostratigraphic database through a massive application of both high-precision 40Ar/39Ar geochronological and geochemical investigations. We illustrate our approach and results in addressing several key-sites such as Notarchirico, Valle Giumentina; Ceprano-Campogrande and La Polledrara di Cecanibbio. The accurate and precise chronological framework we built permits us to replace all the investigated archaeological and palaeontological records into a coherent climatic and environmental context. Furthermore, our work provides the opportunity to compare lithic industries from a technical and evolutionary point of view within a homogeneous temporal frame. These preliminary results border

  8. Late Pleistocene and Holocene Hydroclimate Variability in the Tropical Andes from Alpine Lake Sediments, Cordillera de Mérida, Venezuela

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, D. J.; Abbott, M. B.; Polissar, P. J.

    2014-12-01

    The tropics play a major role in the global hydrologic cycle and changes to tropical rainfall patterns have critical implications for water resources and ecosystem dynamics over large geographic scales. In tropical South America, late Pleistocene and Holocene precipitation variability has been documented in geologic records and associated with numerous external and internal variables, including changes in summer insolation, South American summer monsoon strength, Pacific Ocean sea surface temperatures, continental moisture recycling, and other climate processes. However, there are few records from the northern hemisphere tropical Americas, a key region for understanding interhemispheric linkages and the drivers of tropical hydroclimate variability. Here, we present a ~13 ka record of coupled hydroclimate and environmental changes from Laguna Brava, a small (~0.07 km2), hydrologically closed lake basin situated at 2400 m asl in the Cordillera de Mérida, Venezuela. Sediment cores collected from varying water depths and proximity to shore are placed in a chronologic framework using radiocarbon ages from terrestrial macrofossils, and analyzed for a suite of physical, bulk geochemical, and stable isotopic parameters. Compound specific hydrogen isotope (D/H) measurements of terrestrial plant waxes (long-chain n-alkanes) show a sharp increase in the late Pleistocene, followed by a long-term trend toward more negative values that suggest a ~20‰ decrease in the D/H ratios of South American tropical precipitation during the Holocene. This pattern is consistent in sign and magnitude to other South American precipitation reconstructions from both hemispheres, indicating interhemispheric similarities in tropical hydroclimate variability. Superimposed on this continent-scale trend are changes in moisture balance and environmental conditions in the Venezuelan Andes. We reconstruct these parameters at Laguna Brava at multidecadal and centennial resolution and evaluate this

  9. Pleistocene vertical motions of the Costa Rican outer forearc from subducting topography and a migrating fracture zone triple junction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Joel H.; Kluesner, Jared W.; Silver, Eli A.; Bangs, Nathan L.

    2018-01-01

    Understanding the links between subducting slabs and upper-plate deformation is a longstanding goal in the field of tectonics. New 3D seismic sequence stratigraphy, mapped within the Costa Rica Seismogenesis Project (CRISP) seismic-reflection volume offshore southern Costa Rica, spatiotemporally constrains several Pleistocene outer forearc processes and provides clearer connections to subducting plate dynamics. Three significant shelf and/or slope erosional events at ca. 2.5–2.3 Ma, 1.95–1.78 Ma, and 1.78–1.19 Ma, each with notable differences in spatial extent, volume removed, and subsequent margin response, caused abrupt shifts in sedimentation patterns and rates. These shifts, coupled with observed deformation, suggest three primary mechanisms for Pleistocene shelf and slope vertical motions: (1) regional subaerial erosion and rapid subsidence linked to the southeastward Panama Fracture Zone triple-junction migration, with associated abrupt bathymetric variations and plate kinematic changes; (2) transient, kilometer-scale uplift and subsidence due to inferred subducting plate topography; and (3) progressive outer wedge shortening accommodated by landward- and seaward-dipping thrust faults and fold development due to the impinging Cocos Ridge. Furthermore, we find that the present-day wedge geometry (to within ∼3 km along strike) has been maintained through the Pleistocene, in contrast to modeled landward margin retreat. We also observe that deformation, i.e., extension and shortening, is decoupled from net margin subsidence. Our findings do not require basal erosion, and they suggest that the vertical motions of the Costa Rican outer forearc are not the result of a particular continuous process, but rather are a summation of plate to plate changes (e.g., passage of a fracture zone triple junction) and episodic events (e.g., subducting plate topography).

  10. Application of vertical electrical sounding combined with induced polarization method in ground water exploration; IP koka wo koryoshita hiteikoho suichoku tansa no chikasui chosa eno tekiyo

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kondo, M; Sakurada, H [Sumiko Consultants Co. Ltd., Tokyo (Japan); Suzuki, T [Hokkaido Development Bureau, Hokkaido Development Agency, Sapporo (Japan)

    1996-10-01

    For ground water exploration using vertical Schlumberger exploration method, measurement and analysis combined with induced polarization (IP) effect were conducted as trial. For the Schlumberger method, potential is measured at the center between potential electrodes during flow of dc current between current electrodes. In the case of vertical exploration, measurements are repeated with fixed potential electrodes by extending the distance between current electrodes. Ground water exploration was conducted using this method at Otaki village, Hokkaido. Geology of surveyed plateau consists of a basement of Pliocene tuffs and Quaternary Pleistocene sediments covering on the surface. For the results of analysis, four to seven beds were detected from the resistivity. The depth up to the lowest bed was between 25 and 85 m, the resistivity of each bed was between 9 and 8,000 ohm{times}m, and the polarizability was between 1 and 15 mV/V. Among these resistivity zones, it was judged that zones satisfying following three conditions correspond to coarse grain sediments saturated with ground water, and can be expected as aquifers; having resistivity ranging between 100 and 1,000 ohm{times}m, polarizability higher than 10 mV/V, and relatively large thickness. 11 refs., 6 figs.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. The Changing Face of Plio-Pleistocene Reef Margins: Results of the Dominican Republic Drilling Project (DRDP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaus, J.; McNeill, D. F.; Díaz, V.; Swart, P. K.; Pourmand, A.; Grasmueck, M.; Eberli, G. P.

    2013-12-01

    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. However, the dominance and high accretion potential of acroporid reefs has a relatively recent geologic origin. 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 a transect of the southern coast of the DR in conjunction with over 20 km of ground penetrating radar (GPR) lines. New age constraints based on U/Th geochronometry and radiogenic Sr isotopes, combined with depositional lithofacies, faunal indicators, stable isotope profiles and GPR data have allowed us to correlate between wells and define the internal anatomy and stratal geometry of the individual reef sigmoids and sigmoid sets. The stacking of these sigmoid-shaped reefs produce lateral progradation of approximately 15 km with geometries that generally follow the highstand systems tract model of Pomar and Ward (1994). Based on existing age models eccentricity (high amplitude 100 kyr) sigmoids display increased aggradation and progradation potential compared to reef cycles driven by obliquity (41 kyr).

  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. Plio-Pleistocene landscape and vegetation reconstruction of the coastal area of the Tjörnes Peninsula, Northern Iceland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verhoeven, Koen; Louwye, Stephen; Eiriksson, Jón

    2013-01-01

    Marine and continental deposits from the Tjornes area in northern Iceland were studied to obtain their pollen/spore content. Six Pollen Zones (PZ) were defined in the Early Pliocene Tjornes beds and the Early Pleistocene Breidavik Group. The pollen is most diverse during the deposition of the low......Marine and continental deposits from the Tjornes area in northern Iceland were studied to obtain their pollen/spore content. Six Pollen Zones (PZ) were defined in the Early Pliocene Tjornes beds and the Early Pleistocene Breidavik Group. The pollen is most diverse during the deposition...... of the lowest Tapes Zone (PZ 1) and the lower part of the overlying Mactra Zone (PZ 2). Local pollen from marshland, levee and foothill forests was deposited on a large coastal plain. The pollen spectrum reflects transgression and deepening during the second part of the Mactra Zone (PZ 3) and the lower part...... of the Serripes Zone (PZ 4). Gymnosperm pollen derived from the higher inland plateau increases in PZ 3. This background pollen was of minor importance during periods with an extensive coastal plain (PZ 1, 2, 4, 6). PZ 5 did not yield sufficient pollen for analysis. The pollen analysis allowed refinement...

  17. 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.

  18. Sedimentary architecture of a Plio-Pleistocene proto-back-arc basin: Wanganui Basin, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proust, Jean-Noël; Lamarche, Geoffroy; Nodder, Scott; Kamp, Peter J. J.

    2005-11-01

    The sedimentary architecture of active margin basins, including back-arc basins, is known only from a few end-members that barely illustrate the natural diversity of such basins. Documenting more of these basins types is the key to refining our understanding of the tectonic evolution of continental margins. This paper documents the sedimentary architecture of an incipient back-arc basin 200 km behind the active Hikurangi subduction margin, North Island, New Zealand. The Wanganui Basin (WB) is a rapidly subsiding, Plio-Pleistocene sedimentary basin located at the southern termination of the extensional back-arc basin of the active Central Volcanic Region (TVZ). The WB is asymmetric with a steep, thrust-faulted, outer (arc-ward) margin and a gentle inner (craton-ward) margin. It contains a 4-km-thick succession of Plio-Pleistocene sediments, mostly lying offshore, composed of shelf platform sediments. It lacks the late molasse-like deposits derived from erosion of a subaerial volcanic arc and basement observed in classical back-arc basins. Detailed seismic stratigraphic interpretations from an extensive offshore seismic reflection data grid show that the sediment fill comprises two basin-scale mega-sequences: (1) a Pliocene (3.8 to 1.35 Ma), sub-parallel, regressive "pre-growth" sequence that overtops the uplifted craton-ward margin above the reverse Taranaki Fault, and (2) a Pleistocene (1.35 Ma to present), divergent, transgressive, "syn-growth" sequence that onlaps: (i) the craton-ward high to the west, and (ii) uplifted basement blocks associated with the high-angle reverse faults of the arc-ward margin to the east. Along strike, the sediments offlap first progressively southward (mega-sequence 1) and then southeastward (mega-sequence 2), with sediment transport funnelled between the craton- and arc-ward highs, towards the Hikurangi Trough through the Cook Strait. The change in offlap direction corresponds to the onset of arc-ward thrust faulting and the rise of

  19. NEW FOSSIL VERTEBRATE REMAINS FROM SAN GIOVANNI DI SINIS (LATE PLEISTOCENE, SARDINIA: THE LAST MAUREMYS (REPTILIA, TESTUDINES IN THE CENTRAL MEDITERRANEAN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FRANCESCO CHESI

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available New fossil vertebrates from the most representative Upper Pleistocene section (Tyrrhenian, MIS 5e of the outcrop of San Giovanni di Sinis (Oristano, Sardinia are here reported and described. The fossils, although scarce and fragmentary, document the occurrence of a terrapin (Mauremys sp. and the endemic Sardinian deer (Praemegaceros cazioti. Significant is the occurrence of the terrapin because it is the youngest representative of the genus in the central Mediterranean area where it is extinct at present. The Late Pleistocene extinction of Mauremys in Italy follows the same pattern of other Mediterranean reptiles, in being in some cases delayed on the islands. A comparison of the modern range of Mauremys and that of the pond turtle, Emys, as well as of their past ranges as evidenced by the fossil record, might suggest that some sort of thermophily (at least during pre-hatching stages characterized the former taxon and is responsible for its past and present distribution. SHORT NOTE

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. 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

  2. Time-Transgressive Nature of the Magnetic Susceptibility Record across the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pleistocene/Holocene Transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Yajie; Wu, Naiqin; Li, Fengjiang; Huang, Linpei; Wen, Wenwen

    2015-01-01

    The loess stratigraphic boundary at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition defined by the magnetic susceptibility (MS) has previously been assumed to be synchronous with the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2/1 boundary, and approximately time-synchronous at different sections across the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). However, although this assumption has been used as a basis for proxy-age model of Chinese loess deposits, it has rarely been tested by using absolute dating methods. In this study, we applied a single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol to the 45–63 μm quartz grain-size fraction to derive luminescence ages for the last glacial and Holocene sections of three loess sections on a transect from southeast to northwest across the CLP. Based on the 33 closely spaced optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) samples from the three sections, OSL chronologies were established using a polynomial curve fit at each section. Based on the OSL chronology, the timing of the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary, as defined by rapid changes in MS values, is dated at ~10.5 ka, 8.5 ka and 7.5 ka in the Yaoxian section, Jingchuan and Huanxian sections respectively. These results are clearly inconsistent with the MIS 2/1 boundary age of 12.05 ka, and therefore we conclude that the automatic correlation of the Pleistocene/Holocene transition, as inferred from the MS record, with the MIS 2/1 boundary is incorrect. The results clearly demonstrate that the marked changes in MS along the southeast to northwest transect are time-transgressive among the different sites, with the timing of significant paleosol development as indicated by the MS record being delayed by 3–4 ka in the northwest compared to the southeast. Our results suggest that this asynchronous paleosol development during the last deglacial was caused by the delayed arrival of the summer monsoon in the northwest CLP compared to the southeast. PMID:26186443

  3. Frozen in Time? Microbial strategies for survival and carbon metabolism over geologic time in a Pleistocene permafrost chronosequence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackelprang, R.; Douglas, T. A.; Waldrop, M. P.

    2014-12-01

    Permafrost soils have received tremendous interest due to their importance as a global carbon store with the potential to be thawed over the coming centuries. Instead of being 'frozen in time,' permafrost contains active microbes. Most metagenomic studies have focused on Holocene aged permafrost. Here, we target Pleistocene aged ice and carbon rich permafrost (Yedoma), which can differ in carbon content and stage of decay. Our aim was to understand how microbes in the permafrost transform organic matter over geologic time and to identify physiological and biochemical adaptations that enable long-term survival. We used next-generation sequencing to characterize microbial communities along a permafrost age gradient. Samples were collected from the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) Permafrost Tunnel near Fox, AK, which penetrates a hillside providing access to permafrost ranging in age from 12 to 40 kyr. DNA was extracted directly from unthawed samples. 16S rRNA amplicon (16S) and shotgun metagenome sequencing revealed significant age-driven differences. First, microbial diversity declines with permafrost age, likely due to long-term exposure to environmental stresses and a reduction in metabolic resources. Second, we observed taxonomic differences among ages, with an increasing abundance of Firmicutes (endospore-formers) in older samples, suggesting that dormancy is a common survival strategy in older permafrost. Ordination of 16S and metagenome data revealed age-based clustering. Genes differing significantly between age categories included those involved in lipopolysaccharide assembly, cold-response, and carbon processing. These data point to the physiological adaptations to long-term frozen conditions and to the metabolic processes utilized in ancient permafrost. In fact, a gene common in older samples is involved in cadaverine production, which could potentially explain the putrefied smell of Pleistocene aged permafrost. Coupled with soil

  4. Time-Transgressive Nature of the Magnetic Susceptibility Record across the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pleistocene/Holocene Transition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yajie Dong

    Full Text Available The loess stratigraphic boundary at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition defined by the magnetic susceptibility (MS has previously been assumed to be synchronous with the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS 2/1 boundary, and approximately time-synchronous at different sections across the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP. However, although this assumption has been used as a basis for proxy-age model of Chinese loess deposits, it has rarely been tested by using absolute dating methods. In this study, we applied a single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR protocol to the 45-63 μm quartz grain-size fraction to derive luminescence ages for the last glacial and Holocene sections of three loess sections on a transect from southeast to northwest across the CLP. Based on the 33 closely spaced optically stimulated luminescence (OSL samples from the three sections, OSL chronologies were established using a polynomial curve fit at each section. Based on the OSL chronology, the timing of the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary, as defined by rapid changes in MS values, is dated at ~10.5 ka, 8.5 ka and 7.5 ka in the Yaoxian section, Jingchuan and Huanxian sections respectively. These results are clearly inconsistent with the MIS 2/1 boundary age of 12.05 ka, and therefore we conclude that the automatic correlation of the Pleistocene/Holocene transition, as inferred from the MS record, with the MIS 2/1 boundary is incorrect. The results clearly demonstrate that the marked changes in MS along the southeast to northwest transect are time-transgressive among the different sites, with the timing of significant paleosol development as indicated by the MS record being delayed by 3-4 ka in the northwest compared to the southeast. Our results suggest that this asynchronous paleosol development during the last deglacial was caused by the delayed arrival of the summer monsoon in the northwest CLP compared to the southeast.

  5. Upper pliocene-lower pleistocene 40Ar/39Ar ages of Pudahuel ignimbrite (Diamante-Maipo volcanic complex), Central Chile (33.50S)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wall, R.M.; Lara, L.E.; Perez de Arce, C

    2001-01-01

    The Pudahuel Ignimbrite (Wall et al., 1996) is a characteristic pyroclastic flow deposit placed in the Central Depression, within the Maipo, Mapocho and Cachapoal valleys and, in the eastern side of the Andes, at Yaucha and Papagayos rivers as well (Harrington, 1989; Guerstein, 1993). Close to Santiago, Pudahuel Ignimbrite reaches 40 m in thickness (Dragicevic, 1962) which decreces up to 5 m 60 km to the west. The deposit is compounded by ash and lapilli size pumice within a cineritic matrix with shards, crystals and pumice fragments. Facies of both, laminar and turbulent flow regime can be distinguished, the latter prevailing near topographic barriers and on river plain floors. There, traction structures like cross-bedding and important amount of litic clasts are characteristic. Pumices are rhyolitic in composition (ca. 75% SiO 2 ; Stern et al., 1984; Guerstein, 1993) and have few 0.5-2 mm long biotite crystals. Two 40 Ar/ 39 Ar step-heating experiments on biotite from pumices of two localities, Maipu (Santiago) and Bollenar (Melipilla), show plateau ages of 2.3±0.3 Ma (RW-371) and 2.2±0.3 Ma (RW-1009). In both cases, the first step of the experiment indicates loss of Ar from the cristal rims wich was removed for the plateau calculus only in the second case. For the RW-371 sample an inverse isocrone age of 1.4±0.8 Ma (MSWD: 0.98) was obtained. Previously, the Pudahuel Ignimbrite was dated by Stern et al. (1984) in ca. 450 ka using zircon fission-tracks. Although inconsistent with our new ages, these pleistocene age seemed coherent with the discovery of an Antifer (deer) bone by Tavera (1978) within the ignimbrite close to Santiago. Nevertheless, as was apointed by Tavera (1978) himself, the Antifer genus is recognized in Argentina in the Pliocene-Quaternary interval and make possible a review of the well known 'pleistocene' mammal vertebrate associations in Chile. Another consequence of the new possible pliocene ages is that, since the ignimbrite does not show

  6. New findings of Pleistocene fossil turtles (Geoemydidae, Kinosternidae and Chelydridae from Santa Elena Province, Ecuador

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edwin A. Cadena

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available New Pleistocene fossilized turtle remains from five localities of western Ecuador (Santa Elena Province are described here. All these shell (carapace and plastron fossil remains come from the Tablazo Formation and belong to three different lineages of cryptodires (“hidden-necked” turtles. The most abundant remains belong to geoemydids, attributed here to the genus Rhinoclemmys (indeterminate species. Less abundant in occurrence are the kinosternidids, attributed to Kinosternon (indeterminate species, and the first fossil record of chelydrids, Chelydra(indeterminate species, in the entirety of Central and South America.

  7. Communication grounding facility

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Gye Seong

    1998-06-01

    It is about communication grounding facility, which is made up twelve chapters. It includes general grounding with purpose, materials thermal insulating material, construction of grounding, super strength grounding method, grounding facility with grounding way and building of insulating, switched grounding with No. 1A and LCR, grounding facility of transmission line, wireless facility grounding, grounding facility in wireless base station, grounding of power facility, grounding low-tenton interior power wire, communication facility of railroad, install of arrester in apartment and house, install of arrester on introduction and earth conductivity and measurement with introduction and grounding resistance.

  8. A complete human pelvis from the Middle Pleistocene of Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1999-05-20

    The Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos in Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain, has yielded around 2,500 fossils from at least 33 different hominid individuals. These have been dated at more than 200,000 years ago and have been classified as ancestors of Neanderthals. An almost complete human male pelvis (labelled Pelvis 1) has been found, which we associate with two fragmentary femora. Pelvis 1 is robust and very broad with a very long superior pubic ramus, marked iliac flare, and a long femoral neck. This pattern is probably the primitive condition from which modern humans departed. A modern human newborn would pass through the birth canal of Pelvis 1 and this would be even larger in a female individual. We estimate the body mass of this individual at 95 kg or more. Using the cranial capacities of three specimens from Sima de los Huesos, the encephalization quotients are substantially smaller than in Neanderthals and modern humans.

  9. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Periglacial fires and trees in a continental setting of Central Canada, Upper Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bélanger, N; Carcaillet, C; Padbury, G A; Harvey-Schafer, A N; Van Rees, K J C

    2014-03-01

    Fire is a key factor controlling global vegetation patterns and carbon cycling. It mostly occurs under warm periods during which fuel builds up with sufficient moisture, whereas such conditions stimulate fire ignition and spread. Biomass burning increased globally with warming periods since the last glacial era. Data confirming periglacial fires during glacial periods are very sparse because such climates are likely too cold to favour fires. Here, tree occurrence and fires during the Upper Pleistocene glacial periods in Central Canada are inferred from botanical identification and calibrated radiocarbon dates of charcoal fragments. Charcoal fragments were archived in sandy dunes of central Saskatchewan and were dated >50000-26600 cal BP. Fragments were mostly gymnosperms. Parallels between radiocarbon dates and GISP2-δ¹⁸O records deciphered relationships between fire and climate. Fires occurred either hundreds to thousands of years after Dansgaard-Oeschger (DO) interstadial warming events (i.e., the time needed to build enough fuel for fire ignition and spread) or at the onset of the DO event. The chronological uncertainties result from the dated material not precisely matching the fires and from the low residual ¹⁴C associated with old sample material. Dominance of high-pressure systems and low effective moisture during post-DO coolings likely triggered flammable periglacial ecosystems, while lower moisture and the relative abundance of fuel overshadowed lower temperatures for fire spread. Laurentide ice sheet (LIS) limits during DO events are difficult to assess in Central Canada due to sparse radiocarbon dates. Our radiocarbon data set constrains the extent of LIS. Central Saskatchewan was not covered by LIS throughout the Upper Pleistocene and was not a continental desert. Instead, our results suggest long-lasting periods where fluctuations of the northern tree limits and fires after interstadials occurred persistently. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Vegetal paleoenvironment in the human settlements found in Payre Cave at the end of the Middle Pleistocene and the beginning of the Upper Pleistocene (Ardeche, Francia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalai, Chafika

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available The Middle Paleolithic site named Payre is located in the south-east of France, in the Middle Rhone Valley, in the Mediterranean world. Since 1990, the excavations have yielded a sequence dated from the isotopic stages 7 to 5. The palynological study based on settlement levels from the isotopic stages 6 and 5 has provided us with information about the vegetal environment of the end of the Middle Pleistocene and the beginning of the Upper Pleistocene. When men came, the landscape was semi-forest and the climate was temperate with Mediterranean influences.

    [es] El emplazamiento arqueológico del Paleolítico Medio de Payre se sitúa al sureste de Francia, en el valle del Ródano, en el contexto mediterráneo actual. Las excavaciones que vienen llevándose a cabo desde 1990 presentan una secuencia fechada en los estadios isotópicos 7 al 5. El estudio palinológico de los niveles de ocupación de los estadios isotópicos 6 y 5 nos informan sobre el contexto vegetal del final del Pleistoceno Medio y de principios del Pleistoceno Superior. Los diferentes periodos climáticos se caracterizan por la predominancia de los taxones arbóreos como Quercus t. ilex y Buxus. El paisaje es a lo largo del diagrama, globalmente semi-abierto y el clima de tipo templado presenta influencias mediterráneas. [fr] Le gisement paléolithique moyen de Payre est situé dans le sud-est de la France, dans la moyenne vallée du Rhône en contexte méditerranéen. Les fouilles, qui s'y déroulent depuis 1990, livrent une séquence datée des stades isotopiques 7 à 5. L'étude palynologique des niveaux d'occupation des stades isotopiques 6 et 5 nous informe sur le contexte végétal de la fin du Pléistocène moyen et du début du Pléistocène supérieur. Le paysage est, lors des diverses occupations humaines, globalement semi-ouvert et le climat de type tempéré sous influence méditerranéenne.

  16. 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.

  17. The three-quarter power scaling of extinction risk in Late Pleistocene mammals, and a new theory of the size selectivity of extinction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Polishchuk, L.

    2010-01-01

    Questions: What is the pattern of body mass versus extinction risk in the Late Pleistocene extinctions of mammals, both qualitatively and quantitatively? Are there patterns that relate extinction risk to the well-known allometries of body mass with population density or population growth rate?

  18. A modeling experiment on the grounding of an ice shelf in the central Arctic Ocean during MIS 6

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakobsson, M.; Siegert, M.; Paton, M.

    2003-12-01

    across the section of the ridge where there is evidence for grounding. Second, even with ultra low rates of basal melting, the ice shelf thickness was always less than 200 m over the ridge. We conclude that grounding of the Lomonosov Ridge by a free-flowing ice shelf is not possible. When the strain rate was reduced to zero, however, the shelf thickness increased substantially. Such conditions are likely only to have occurred during periods of large-scale glaciation across the Eurasian Arctic such as in the Saalian, and if a substantial stagnant thickened sea ice was present in the ocean, buttressing the shelf flowing from the Barents Sea. Our results are interpreted using new techniques for dynamic 3D-visualization. Jakobsson, M., Lovlie, R., Arnold, E. M., Backman, J., Polyak, L., Knutsen, JO., and Musatov, E.,, Pleistocene stratigraphy and paleoenvironmental variation from Lomonosov Ridge sediments, central Arctic Ocean, Global and Planetary Change, 31(1-4), 1-21, 2001. Jakobsson, M., First high-resolution chirp sonar profiles from the central Arctic Ocean reveal erosion of Lomonosov Ridge sediments, Marine Geology, 158, 111-123, 1999. Polyak, L., Edwards, M. H., Coakley, B. J. and Jakobsson, M., Ice shelves in the Pleistocene Artic Ocean inferred from glaciogenic deep-sea bedforms, Nature, 410, 453-457, 2001. Svendsen, J.I. et al, Late Quaternary ice sheet history of Nortern Eurasia, submitted to Quaternay Science Reviews, in press.

  19. Ground Pollution Science

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oh, Jong Min; Bae, Jae Geun

    1997-08-01

    This book deals with ground pollution science and soil science, classification of soil and fundamentals, ground pollution and human, ground pollution and organic matter, ground pollution and city environment, environmental problems of the earth and ground pollution, soil pollution and development of geological features of the ground, ground pollution and landfill of waste, case of measurement of ground pollution.

  20. Water resources of southeastern Florida, with special reference to geology and ground water of the Miami area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Garald G.; Ferguson, G.E.; Love, S.K.

    1955-01-01

    The circulation of water, in any form, from the surface of the earth to the atmosphere and back again is called the hydrologic cycle. A comprehensive study of the water resources of any area must, therefore, include data on the climate of the area. The humid subtropical climate of southeast Florida is characterized by relatively high temperatures, alternating semi-annual wet and dry season, and usually light put persistent winds. The recurrence of drought in an area having relatively large rainfall such as southeastern Florida indicates that the agencies that remove water are especially effective. Two of the most important of the agencies associated with climate are evaporation and transpiration, or 'evapotranspiraton'. Evaporation losses from permanent water areas are believed to average between 40 and 45 inches per year. Over land areas indirect methods much be used to determine losses by evapotranspiration; necessarily, there values are not precise. Because of their importance in the occurrence and movement of both surface and ground waters, detailed studies were made of the geology and geomorphology of southern Florida. As a result of widespread crustal movements, southern Florida emerged from the sea in later Pliocene time and probably was slightly tilted to the west. At the beginning of the Pleistocene the continent emerged still farther as a result of the lowering of sea level attending the first widespread glaciation. During this epoch, south Florida may have stood several hundred feet above sea level. During the interglacial ages the sea repeatedly flooded southern Florida. The marine members of the Fort Thompson formation in the Lake Okeechobee-Everglades depression and the Calossahatchee River Valley apparently are the deposits of the interglacial invasions by the sea. The fresh-water marls, sands, and organic deposits of the Fort Thompson formation appear to have accumulated during glacial ages when seas level was low and the area was a land surface

  1. Dating Middle Pleistocene loess from Stari Slankamen (Vojvodina, Serbia) — Limitations imposed by the saturation behaviour of an elevated temperature IRSL signal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Murray, Andrew Sean; Schmidt, E.D.; Stevens, T.

    2014-01-01

    Recent advances in post-IR IRSL dating have led to breakthroughs in dating upper Middle Pleistocene loess sequences. Here, an elevated temperature post-IR IR protocol using a second IR stimulation temperature of 290°C is applied to eleven polymineral fine-grain (4–11μm) samples from the lower part...... of the Middle–Lower Pleistocene Stari Slankamen loess–palaeosol sequence with the aim of refining the site's age model and investigating the behaviour of both the IR50 and the pIRIR290 signals in material close to or in luminescence signal saturation. Both signals from the 8 samples below the prominent erosion...... is equal to laboratory saturation for this signal. Minimum equivalent dose estimates were calculated from 2*D0 values, giving minimum age estimates of ~230–390ka; this result suggests an upper limit for dating these loess deposits of ~300ka. The age estimate of the younger sample SSK2 is in good agreement...

  2. 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.

  3. Geo morphological setting and main technological features of new Middle and Upper Pleistocene sites in the Lower Manzanares River Valley (Madrid, Spain); Contexto geomorfologico y principales rasgos tecnologicos de nuevos yacimientos del Pleistoceno Medio y Superior en el Valle Inferior del Manzanares (Madrid, Espana)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silva, P. G.; Lopez Recio, M.; Cuartero, F.; Baena, J.; Tapias, F.; Manzano, I.; Martin, D.; Morin, J.; Roquero, E.

    2012-11-01

    The archaeological works developed during the years 1996 in the site of Tafesa, 2005 in the 12 de Octubre Metro Station site and 2006 in the confluence of the Butarque Stream (Villaverde-Barrio de Butarque site) located south of the Madrid City (Spain), have provided new lithic assemblages. These assemblages have been stratigraphic ally contextualized in the Pleistocene deposits of the Lower Manzanares river valley within the so-called Manzanares Complex Terrace (TCMZ). This fluvial terrace constitutes an anomalous thickened (20-15m) deposit at {+-}22-16m above the present river thalweg mainly developed along the right (southern) valley margin. This fluvial level has been traditionally considered of middle Pleistocene age on the basis of the acheulian lithics and faunal assemblages typically located within its lower stratigraphic layers. Certainly, the Tafesa is a fluvial terrace site at {+-}22 m with acheulian industry and middle Pleistocene faunal remains at its lower sedimentary sequence. However, the upper sedimentary levels of this same terrace in the 12 de Octubre y Villaverde-Butarque sites throw lithic assemblages of the lower and upper Paleolithic belonging to upper Pleistocene, as suggested by the available set of TL and OSL dates for the zone. The analyses developed in this study indicate that the development of this thickened fluvial terrace started during the end of the middle Pleistocene, but also comprise the whole Oxygen Isotopic Stage OIS 5 during the upper Pleistocene. (Author) 95 refs.

  4. Late Pleistocene sedimentation: A case study of the central Indian Ocean Basin

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Borole, D

    -Sea Research 1, Vol 40, No 4, pp 761-775, 1993 0967-0637/93 $6 00 + 0 00 Printed m Great Britain © 1993 Pergamon Press Lid Late Pleistocene sedimentation: a case study of the central Indian Ocean Basin D. V. BOROLE* (Recetved 26 August 1988, in revised... 26 + 0 11 4 10 + 0.20 1 30 + 0 10 5 03 20-25 1 10 + 0.07 3 60 + 0.14 1 08 ___ 0 09 5 3 30-35 1 51 + 0.10 3.28 + 0 34 1.10 + 0.15 5 3 65-70 1.08 + 0 05 3 20 + 0.23 0 97 + 0.09 4 38 80-85 0 81 + 0 05 1 80 + 0.12 0 63 + 0 06 4 37 Conanued 766 D V...

  5. The micromammals (Lagomorpha, Eulipotyphla and Rodentia) from the Middle Pleistocene site of Cuesta de la Bajada (Teruel, Spain): Systematic study and paleoenvironmental considerations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sese, C.; Soto, E.; Santonja, M.; Perez-Gonzalez, A.; Dominguez-Rodrigo, M.

    2016-07-01

    The micromammal association established in this work is the following: Lagomorpha: Oryctolagus cuniculus; Eulipotyphla: Crocidura cf. russula, cf. Sorex sp., Neomys sp., Soricidae indet. and Talpa sp.; and Rodentia: Eliomys quercinus, Apodemus cf. sylvaticus, Cricetulus (Allocricetus) bursae, Arvicola aff. sapidus, Microtus (Iberomys) brecciensis and Microtus (Terricola duodecimcostatus. This association is characteristic of the Middle Pleistocene. The morphological state of Cricetulus (A.) bursae, Arvicola aff. sapidus and Microtus (I.) brecciensis allows to place it in the advanced, but not final, Middle Pleistocene, which agrees with the numerical data of the site (243–337 ka) that places it in the MIS 8 or 9. The micromammals indicate the predominance of the open spaces with abundant vegetation mainly of herbaceous and bushes but also with some areas with trees. The climate would be of Mediterranean type, similar to the actual or perhaps a little milder and more humid. (Author)

  6. A Stratigraphic Pollen Record from a Late Pleistocene Cypress Forest, Northern Gulf of Mexico Continental Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, A.; Harley, G. L.; DeLong, K. L.; Bentley, S. J.; Xu, K.; Gonzalez Rodriguez, S. M.; Truong, J. T.; Obelcz, J.; Caporaso, A.

    2017-12-01

    Stratigraphic pollen analysis was performed on a layer of preserved peat found near the bottom of a 4.75m vibracore taken in 18m of water off the coast of Orange Beach, Alabama. The core was taken from a site where the remains of a previously buried bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) forest was discovered after wave action, likely from Hurricane Ivan in 2004, scoured and removed the overlying Holocene/late Pleistocene sand sheet. Many of the cypress stumps found at the site are still in growth position, and rooted in the preserved terrestrial soils below. Radiocarbon dating of the peat recovered in core DF1 suggests that the sediment is likely Marine Isotope Stage 3 (MIS 3), or earlier. We hypothesize that the site was quickly buried and preserved by floodplain aggradation associated with sea-level rise that occurred near the end of MIS 3. This rare find provides an opportunity to study in situ fossil pollen from a glacial refugium in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Pollen results from the lowermost sections within the peat layer show an assemblage consistent with a bald cypress/tupelo gum (Nyssa aquatica) backwater. This is eventually replaced by a more open, possibly brackish, environment, dominated by grasses (Poaceae) and sedges (Cyperaceae). During this change however, there is a brief but very interesting period where the pollen assemblage is likely analogous to the modern day Atlantic Coastal Plain Blackwater Levee/Bar Forests of North and South Carolina. In this modern assemblage, as well as the core samples, birch (Betula), oak (Quercus) and bald cypress are the dominant taxa, along with a strong presence of alder (Alnus), grasses and sedges. We hypothesize that these bar forests formed on areas of higher ground, which resulted from floodplain aggradation that accompanied sea level rise at the end of MIS 3.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. The carnivore remains from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    García, N; Arsuaga, J L; Torres, T

    1997-01-01

    Remains of carnivores from the Sima de los Huesos site representing at least 158 adult individuals of a primitive (i.e., not very speleoid) form of Ursus deningeri Von Reichenau 1906, have been recovered through the 1995 field season. These new finds extend our knowledge of this group in the Sierra de Atapuerca Middle Pleistocene. Material previously classified as Cuoninae indet, is now assigned to Canis lupus and a third metatarsal assigned in 1987 to Panthera of gombaszoegensis, is in our opinion only attributable to Panthera sp. The family Mustelidae is added to the faunal list and includes Martes sp. and a smaller species. The presence of Panthera leo cf. fossilis, Lynx pardina spelaea and Felis silvestris, is confirmed. The presence of a not very speloid Ursus deningeri, together with the rest of the carnivore assemblage, points to a not very late Middle Pleistocene age, i.e., oxygen isotope stage 7 or older. Relative frequencies of skeletal elements for the bear and fox samples are without major biases. The age structure of the bear sample, based on dental wear stages, does not follow the typical hibernation mortality profile and resembles a catastrophic profile. The site was not a natal or refuge den. The hypothesis that the site was a natural trap is the most plausible. If the Sima de los Huesos functioned as a natural trap (without an egress out), the human accumulation cannot be attributed to carnivore: activities and must be explained differently.

  10. Holocene estuarine sediments as a source of arsenic in Pleistocene groundwater in suburbs of Hanoi, Vietnam

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuroda, Keisuke; Hayashi, Takeshi; Funabiki, Ayako; Do, An Thuan; Canh, Vu Duc; Nga, Tran Thi Viet; Takizawa, Satoshi

    2017-06-01

    Groundwater pollution by arsenic is a major health threat in suburban areas of Hanoi, Vietnam. The present study evaluates the effect of the sedimentary environments of the Pleistocene and Holocene deposits, and the recharge systems, on the groundwater arsenic pollution in Hanoi suburbs distant from the Red River. At two study sites (Linh Dam and Tai Mo communes), undisturbed soil cores identified a Pleistocene confined aquifer (PCA) and Holocene unconfined aquifer (HUA) as major aquifers, and Holocene estuarine and deltaic sediments as an aquitard layer between the two aquifers. The Holocene estuarine sediments (approximately 25-40 m depth, 9.6-4.8 cal ka BP) contained notably high concentrations of arsenic and organic matter, both likely to have been accumulated by mangroves during the Holocene sea-level highstand. The pore waters in these particular sediments exhibited elevated levels of arsenic and dissolved organic carbon. Arsenic in groundwater was higher in the PCA (25-94 μg/L) than in the HUA (5.2-42 μg/L), in both the monitoring wells and neighboring household tubewells. Elevated arsenic concentration in the PCA groundwater was likely due to vertical infiltration through the arsenic-rich and organic-matter-rich overlying Holocene estuarine sediments, caused by massive groundwater abstraction from the PCA. Countermeasures to prevent arsenic pollution of the PCA groundwater may include seeking alternative water resources, reducing water consumption, and/or appropriate choice of aquifers for groundwater supply.

  11. Human calcanei from the Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pablos, Adrián; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Sala, Nohemi; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2014-11-01

    The existence of calcanei in the fossil record prior to modern humans and Neandertals is very scarce. This skeletal element is fundamental to understanding the evolution of the morphology of the foot in human evolution. Here we present and metrically and comparatively describe 29 calcaneus remains from the Middle Pleistocene site of Sima de los Huesos (SH) (Sierra de Atapuerca, Burgos, Spain). These calcanei belong to 15 individuals (nine adults, two adolescents and four immature individuals). The metric and morphological differences in the calcanei among Middle and Late Pleistocene hominins tend to be subtle. However, the calcanei from SH are broad and robust with large articular surfaces and most significantly, exhibit a very projected sustentaculum tali. A biomechanical and phylogenetic interpretation is proffered to explain the observed morphology of these calcanei. It has been possible to propose tentative sex assignments for the SH calcanei based on size, using methods similar to those used to establish sex from the talus bones from SH. The estimation of stature based on the calcaneus provides a mean of 175.3 cm for males and 160.6 for females, which is similar to that obtained using other skeletal parts from the site. In sum, the SH calcanei are robust with a proportionally long tubercle and a projected sustentaculum tali, which are traits shared by Neandertals. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Geothermal properties and groundwater flow estimated with a three-dimensional geological model in a late Pleistocene terrace area, central Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funabiki, A.; Takemura, T.; Hamamoto, S.; Komatsu, T.

    2012-12-01

    1. Introduction The ground source heat pump (GSHP) is a highly efficient and renewable energy technology for space heating and cooling, with benefits that include energy conservation and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. One result of the huge Tohoku-oki earthquake and tsunami and the subsequent nuclear disasters is that GSHPs are receiving more attention from the media and they are being introduced by some local governments. Heat generated by underground GSHP installation, however, can pollute the geothermal environment or change groundwater flow patterns . In this study, we estimated possible effects from the use of GSHPs in the Tokyo area with a three-dimensional (3D) geological model. 2. Geological model The Tokyo Metropolitan Area is surrounded by the Late Pleistocene terraces called the Musashino uplands. The terrace surfaces are densely populated residential areas. One of these surfaces, the Shimosueyohi surface, formed along the Tama River during the last deglacial period. The CRE-NUCHS-1 core (Funabiki et al., 2011) was obtained from this surface, and the lithology, heat transfer coefficients, and chemical characteristics of the sediments were analyzed. In this study, we used borehole log data from a 5 km2 area surrounding the CRE-NUCHS-1 core site to create a 3D geological model. In this area, the Pleistocene Kazusa Group is overlain by terrace gravels and a volcanic ash layer called the Kanto Loam. The terrace gravels occur mainly beneath the Kanda, Kitazawa, and Karasuyama rivers , which flow parallel to the Tama River, whereas away from the rivers , the Kanto Loam directly overlies the Kazusa Group sediments. 3. Geothermal disturbance and groundwater flow Using the geological model, we calculated the heat transfer coefficients and groundwater flow velocities in the sediments. Within the thick terrace gravels, which are at relatively shallow depth (8-20 m), heat transfer coefficients were high and groundwater flow was relatively fast. The amount

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. Latest Pleistocene to Holocene Evolution of the Baie de Port au Prince, Haiti

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  16. Late Miocene-Pleistocene evolution of a Rio Grande rift subbasin, Sunshine Valley-Costilla Plain, San Luis Basin, New Mexico and Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruleman, C.A.; Thompson, R.A.; Shroba, R.R.; Anderson, M.; Drenth, B.J.; Rotzien, J.; Lyon, J.

    2013-01-01

    The Sunshine Valley-Costilla Plain, a structural subbasin of the greater San Luis Basin of the northern Rio Grande rift, is bounded to the north and south by the San Luis Hills and the Red River fault zone, respectively. Surficial mapping, neotectonic investigations, geochronology, and geophysics demonstrate that the structural, volcanic, and geomorphic evolution of the basin involves the intermingling of climatic cycles and spatially and temporally varying tectonic activity of the Rio Grande rift system. Tectonic activity has transferred between range-bounding and intrabasin faults creating relict landforms of higher tectonic-activity rates along the mountain-piedmont junction. Pliocene–Pleistocene average long-term slip rates along the southern Sangre de Cristo fault zone range between 0.1 and 0.2 mm/year with late Pleistocene slip rates approximately half (0.06 mm/year) of the longer Quaternary slip rate. During the late Pleistocene, climatic influences have been dominant over tectonic influences on mountain-front geomorphic processes. Geomorphic evidence suggests that this once-closed subbasin was integrated into the Rio Grande prior to the integration of the once-closed northern San Luis Basin, north of the San Luis Hills, Colorado; however, deep canyon incision, north of the Red River and south of the San Luis Hills, initiated relatively coeval to the integration of the northern San Luis Basin.Long-term projections of slip rates applied to a 1.6 km basin depth defined from geophysical modeling suggests that rifting initiated within this subbasin between 20 and 10 Ma. Geologic mapping and geophysical interpretations reveal a complex network of northwest-, northeast-, and north-south–trending faults. Northwest- and northeast-trending faults show dual polarity and are crosscut by north-south– trending faults. This structural model possibly provides an analog for how some intracontinental rift structures evolve through time.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. Pleistocene speleothem fracturing in the foreland of the Western Carpathians: a case study from the seismically active eastern margin of the Bohemian Massif

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bábek, O.; Briestenský, Miloš; Přecechtělová, G.; Štěpančíková, Petra; Hellstrom, J.C.; Drysdale, R.N.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 59, č. 3 (2015), s. 491-506 ISSN 1641-7291 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP210/12/0573 Institutional support: RVO:67985891 Keywords : speleothems * U/Th series dating * palaeoseismicity * Pleistocene * Bohemian Massif Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy Impact factor: 0.858, year: 2015

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Grounded theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Tina

    2015-04-29

    Grounded theory is a popular research approach in health care and the social sciences. This article provides a description of grounded theory methodology and its key components, using examples from published studies to demonstrate practical application. It aims to demystify grounded theory for novice nurse researchers, by explaining what it is, when to use it, why they would want to use it and how to use it. It should enable nurse researchers to decide if grounded theory is an appropriate approach for their research, and to determine the quality of any grounded theory research they read.

  2. Ground cross-modal impedance as a tool for analyzing ground/plate interaction and ground wave propagation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grau, L; Laulagnet, B

    2015-05-01

    An analytical approach is investigated to model ground-plate interaction based on modal decomposition and the two-dimensional Fourier transform. A finite rectangular plate subjected to flexural vibration is coupled with the ground and modeled with the Kirchhoff hypothesis. A Navier equation represents the stratified ground, assumed infinite in the x- and y-directions and free at the top surface. To obtain an analytical solution, modal decomposition is applied to the structure and a Fourier Transform is applied to the ground. The result is a new tool for analyzing ground-plate interaction to resolve this problem: ground cross-modal impedance. It allows quantifying the added-stiffness, added-mass, and added-damping from the ground to the structure. Similarity with the parallel acoustic problem is highlighted. A comparison between the theory and the experiment shows good matching. Finally, specific cases are investigated, notably the influence of layer depth on plate vibration.

  3. 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

  4. Lithostratigraphical and tectono-sedimentary study of the Plio-Pleistocene infill of the Interandean North Cauca Valley Basin (Colombia)

    OpenAIRE

    Neuwerth, Ralph

    2009-01-01

    This investigation focus on the study of the Plio-Plesitocene deposits in a zone covering parts of the Quindío, Risaralda and Valle del Cauca departments in Central Colombia. The results can be summarized as follows : In the initial phase, a vast field campaign, a detailed sedimentological study and facies analyses have led to the differentiation of various lithological units within the Zarzal Formation, allowing the stratigraphical redefinition of the Plio-Pleistocene sediments deposited in ...

  5. Competition-strength-dependent ground suppression in figure-ground perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salvagio, Elizabeth; Cacciamani, Laura; Peterson, Mary A

    2012-07-01

    Figure-ground segregation is modeled as inhibitory competition between objects that might be perceived on opposite sides of borders. The winner is the figure; the loser is suppressed, and its location is perceived as shapeless ground. Evidence of ground suppression would support inhibitory competition models and would contribute to explaining why grounds are shapeless near borders shared with figures, yet such evidence is scarce. We manipulated whether competition from potential objects on the ground side of figures was high (i.e., portions of familiar objects were potentially present there) or low (novel objects were potentially present). We predicted that greater competition would produce more ground suppression. The results of two experiments in which suppression was assessed via judgments of the orientation of target bars confirmed this prediction; a third experiment showed that ground suppression is short-lived. Our findings support inhibitory competition models of figure assignment, in particular, and models of visual perception entailing feedback, in general.

  6. Ground-water resources of the Alma area, Michigan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanlier, Kenneth E.

    1963-01-01

    The Alma area consists of 30 square miles in the northwestern part of Gratiot County, Mich. It is an area of slight relief gently rolling hills and level plains and is an important agricultural center in the State.The Saginaw formation, which forms the bedrock surface in part of the area, is of relatively low permeability and yields water containing objectionable amounts of chloride. Formations below the Saginaw are tapped for brine in and near the Alma area.The consolidated rocks of the Alma area are mantled by Pleistocene glacial deposits, which are as much as 550 feet thick where preglacial valleys were eroded into the bedrock. The glacial deposits consist of till, glacial-lake deposits, and outwash. Till deposits are at the surface along the south-trending moraines that cross the area, and they underlie other types of glacial deposits at depth throughout the area. The till deposits are of low permeability and are not a source of water to wells, though locally they include small lenses of permeable sand and gravel.In the western part of the area, including much of the city of Alma, the glacial-lake deposits consist primarily of sand and are a source of small supplies of water. In the northeastern part of the area the lake deposits are predominantly clayey and of low permeability.Sand and gravel outwash yields moderate and large supplies of water within the area. Outwash is present at the surface along the West Branch of the Pine River. A more extensive deposit of outwash buried by the lake deposits is the source of most of the ground water pumped at Alma. The presence of an additional deposit of buried outwash west and southwest of the city is inferred from the glacial history of the area. Additional water supplies that may be developed from these deposits are probably adequate for anticipated population and industrial growth.Water levels have declined generally in the vicinity of the city of Alma since 1920 in response to pumping for municipal and industrial

  7. Sea surface temperatures from the southern Benguela region from the Pliocene and Pleistocene: tracking Agulhas Current input into the SE Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrick, B. F.; McClymont, E.; Felder, S.; Lloyd, J. M.; Leng, M. J.

    2011-12-01

    The Pliocene and-Pleistocene epochs provide a way to understand the effect of past climate changes on key ocean currents. Here, we show results from ODP Site1087 (31.28'S, 15.19'E, 1374m water depth) to investigate changes in ocean circulation over the period of the mid-Pliocene warm period 3.0-3.5 Ma and compare these to the time of the 100 kyr Pleistocene glacial cycles. ODP 1087 is located in the South-eastern Atlantic Ocean, outside of the Benguela upwelling region; reconstructing the temperature history of the site will therefore provide an important data set from a part of the ocean that has few orbital-scale and continuous Pliocene temperature reconstructions. ODP 1087 can be used to investigate the history of the heat and salt transfer to the Atlantic Ocean from the Indian Ocean via the Agulhas Retroflection, which plays an important part in the global thermohaline circulation (Lutjeharms, 2007). Climate models and reconstructions for the most recent glacial-interglacial cycles have shown that changes to the strength of the heat transfer may cause major climatic changes and may play a role in transitions from glacial to interglacial events (Knorr & Lohmann, 2003). It is unknown how this transfer reacted to generally warmer global temperatures during the mid-Pliocene. Because the mid-Pliocene is seen as a model for future climate change it might provide a model for ocean circulations in a warmer world. Our approach is to apply several organic geochemistry proxies and foraminiferal analyses to reconstruct the history of ODP 1087. The UK37' index records differences in the unsaturated bonds in the C37 alkenones to reconstruct sea surface temperatures (Brassell et al., 1986). We present SSTs generated for the mid-Pliocene Warm period with a resolution of 4000 years. We compare this data to the time of the 100 kyr glacial cycles during the late Pleistocene. Even though ODP 1087 is located outside the Benguela upwelling system, it has lower Pliocene temperatures

  8. Direct dating of Pleistocene stegodon from Timor Island, East Nusa Tenggara

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Louys

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Stegodons are a commonly recovered extinct proboscidean (elephants and allies from the Pleistocene record of Southeast Asian oceanic islands. Estimates on when stegodons arrived on individual islands and the timings of their extinctions are poorly constrained due to few reported direct geochronological analyses of their remains. Here we report on uranium-series dating of a stegodon tusk recovered from the Ainaro Gravels of Timor. The six dates obtained indicate the local presence of stegodons in Timor at or before 130 ka, significantly pre-dating the earliest evidence of humans on the island. On the basis of current data, we find no evidence for significant environmental changes or the presence of modern humans in the region during that time. Thus, we do not consider either of these factors to have contributed significantly to their extinction. In the absence of these, we propose that their extinction was possibly the result of long-term demographic and genetic declines associated with an isolated island population.

  9. Regional analysis of ground and above-ground climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-12-01

    The regional suitability of underground construction as a climate control technique is discussed with reference to (1) a bioclimatic analysis of long term weather data for 29 locations in the United States to determine appropriate above ground climate control techniques, (2) a data base of synthesized ground temperatures for the coterminous United States, and (3) monthly dew point ground temperature comparisons for identifying the relative likelihood of condensation from one region to another. It is concluded that the suitability of Earth tempering as a practice and of specific Earth sheltered design stereotypes varies geographically; while the subsurface almost always provides a thermal advantage on its own terms when compared to above ground climatic data, it can, nonetheless, compromise the effectiveness of other, regionally more important climate control techniques. Reviews of above and below ground climate mapping schemes related to human comfort and architectural design, and detailed description of a theoretical model of ground temperature, heat flow, and heat storage in the ground are included. Strategies of passive climate control are presented in a discussion of the building bioclimatic analysis procedure which has been applied in a computer analysis of 30 years of weather data for each of 20 locations in the United States.

  10. Regional analysis of ground and above-ground climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1981-12-01

    The regional suitability of underground construction as a climate control technique is discussed with reference to (1) a bioclimatic analysis of long-term weather data for 29 locations in the United States to determine appropriate above ground climate control techniques, (2) a data base of synthesized ground temperatures for the coterminous United States, and (3) monthly dew point ground temperature comparisons for identifying the relative likelihood of condensation from one region to another. It is concluded that the suitability of earth tempering as a practice and of specific earth-sheltered design stereotypes varies geographically; while the subsurface almost always provides a thermal advantage on its own terms when compared to above ground climatic data, it can, nonetheless, compromise the effectiveness of other, regionally more important climate control techniques. Also contained in the report are reviews of above and below ground climate mapping schemes related to human comfort and architectural design, and detailed description of a theoretical model of ground temperature, heat flow, and heat storage in the ground. Strategies of passive climate control are presented in a discussion of the building bioclimatic analysis procedure which has been applied in a computer analysis of 30 years of weather data for each of 29 locations in the United States.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

    The main goal of our research is the high-resolution reconstruction of environmental and climatic changes in SE Baltic region since the Last Glacial Maximum by palaeolimnological data. The 6 objects - lakes and peat-bogs, were studied since 2009 in the Kaliningrad region, Russian Federation. According to palaeolimnological studies of bottom sediments of the Kamyshovoe Lake (N 54°22,6`; E22°42,8`, 189 m a.s.l.), located in the Vishtynets Highland, the south-east part of Kaliningrad district, the environmental and climatic changes after the late glacial have been reconstructed. At that moment the radiocarbon and loss-on-ignition (LOI) data, geochemistry and diatom analysis for the whole sediment core, and pollen analyze for the bottom part of the core have been completed. According to the pollen data the Alleröd interstadial starts at 13 200 cal. yrs BP and is marked by the rising of birch and pine pollen. The transition to the Younger Dryas around 12 700 cal. yrs BP corresponds with the development of patches of shrublands in which light-demanding species, such as juniper, flourished and communities of steppe herbs. The late Preboreal is marked by the appearance of Populus and an increase of the role of grasses in the vegetation cover 11 300-11 100 cal. yrs BP (Druzinina et al., 2015). The Holocene climatic zones have been identified by LOI and geochemistry analyses. The Boreal period started about 10 200 cal. yrs BP, Atlantic around 9100 cal. yrs BP, Subboreal 5800 cal. yrs BP, and Subatlantic 3200 cal. yrs BP (Kublitskiy et al., 2015). During the conference the new palaeolimnological data of environmental variability during the late Pleistocene and Holocene in SE Baltic region will be presented. Acknowledgements The investigations have been granted by the Russian Fund for Basic Research (12-05-33013, 13-05-41457, 15-35-50721). References Druzhinina, O., Subetto, D., Stančikaitė, M., Vaikutienė, G., Kublitsky, J., Arslanov, Kh., 2015. Sediment record from the

  14. Chemical controls on abiotic and biotic release of geogenic arsenic from Pleistocene aquifer sediments to groundwater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillispie, Elizabeth C; Andujar, Erika; Polizzotto, Matthew L

    2016-08-10

    Over 150 million people in South and Southeast Asia consume unsafe drinking water from arsenic-rich Holocene aquifers. Although use of As-free water from Pleistocene aquifers is a potential mitigation strategy, such aquifers are vulnerable to geogenic As pollution, placing millions more people at potential risk. The goal of this research was to define chemical controls on abiotic and biotic release of geogenic As to groundwater. Batch incubations of sediments with natural chemical variability from a Pleistocene aquifer in Cambodia were conducted to evaluate how interactions among arsenic, manganese and iron oxides, and dissolved and sedimentary organic carbon influenced As mobilization from sediments. The addition of labile dissolved organic carbon produced the highest concentrations of dissolved As after >7 months, as compared to sediment samples incubated with sodium azide or without added carbon, and the extent of As release was positively correlated with the percent of initial extractable Mn released from the sediments. The mode of As release was impacted by the source of DOC supplied to the sediments, with biological processes responsible for 81% to 85% of the total As release following incubations with lactate and acetate but only up to 43% to 61% of the total As release following incubations with humic and fulvic acids. Overall, cycling of key redox-active elements and organic-carbon reactivity govern the potential for geogenic As release to groundwater, and results here may be used to formulate better predictions of the arsenic pollution potential of aquifers in South and Southeast Asia.

  15. The Mount Edgecumbe tephra deposits, a marker horizon in southeastern Alaska near the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riehle, J.R.; Mann, D.H.; Peteet, D.M.; Engstrom, D.R.; Brew, D.A.; Meyer, C.E.

    1992-01-01

    Late Pleistocene tephra deposits found from Sitka to Juneau and Lituya Bay are assigned to a source at the Mount Edgecumbe volcanic field, based on similarity of glass compositions to nearvent deposits and on thinning away from Kruzof Island. The sequence of near-vent layers is basaltic andesite and andesite at the base, rhyolite, and mixed dacite and rhyolite on top. The only breaks in the tephra sequence are two 1-mm-thick silt partings in a lake-sediment core, indicating a depositional interval from basaltic andesite to dacite of no more than about a millennium. Tephra deposits at sites >30 km from the vent are solely dacite and rhyolite and are 10,600 to 11,400 14C yr old based on interpretation of 18 radiocarbon ages, including 5 by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). Basaltic andesite and andesite deposits nearer the vent are as much as 12,000 yr old. Discrepancy among radiocarbon ages of upland tephra deposits provisionally correlated as the same grainfall is resolvable within ??2 ?? of analytical uncertainty. Comparison of bulk and AMS ages in one sediment core indicates a systematic bias of +600 to +1100 yr for the bulk ages; correlation of tephra deposits among upland and lacustrine sites implies an additional discrepancy of 200-400 yr between upland (relatively too young) and lacustrine ages. In any case, the Mount Edgecumbe tephra deposits are a widespread, latest Pleistocene stratigraphic marker that serves to emphasize the uncertainty in dating biogenic material from southeastern Alaska. ?? 1992.

  16. 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.

  17. Megadontia, striae periodicity and patterns of enamel secretion in Plio-Pleistocene fossil hominins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacruz, Rodrigo S; Dean, M Christopher; Ramirez-Rozzi, Fernando; Bromage, Timothy G

    2008-08-01

    Early hominins formed large and thick-enamelled cheek-teeth within relatively short growth periods as compared with modern humans. To understand better the developmental basis of this process, we measured daily enamel increments, or cross striations, in 17 molars of Plio-Pleistocene hominins representing seven different species, including specimens attributed to early Homo. Our results show considerable variation across species, although all specimens conformed to the known pattern characterised by greater values in outer than inner enamel, and greater cuspal than cervical values. We then compared our results with the megadontia index, which represents tooth size in relation to body mass, for each species to assess the effect of daily growth rates on tooth size. Our results indicate that larger toothed (megadont) taxa display higher rates or faster forming enamel than smaller toothed hominins. By forming enamel quickly, large tooth crowns were able to develop within the constraints of shorter growth periods. Besides daily increments, many animals express long-period markings (striae of Retzius) in their enamel. We report periodicity values (number of cross striations between adjacent striae) in 14 new specimens of Australopithecus afarensis, Paranthropus aethiopicus, Paranthropus boisei, Homo habilis, Homo rudolfensis and Homo erectus, and show that long-period striae express a strong association with male and average male-female body mass. Our results for Plio-Pleistocene hominins show that the biological rhythms that give rise to long-period striae are encompassed within the range of variation known for modern humans, but show a lower mean and modal value of 7 days in australopithecines. In our sample of early Homo, mean and modal periodicity values were 8 days, and therefore similar to modern humans. These new data on daily rates of enamel formation and periodicity provide a better framework to interpret surface manifestations of internal growth markings on

  18. The Pleistocene Eastern Equatorial Pacific: Insights from a New Carnegie Platform Stratigraphic Record

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwizd, S.; Lea, D. W.

    2016-12-01

    Renewed interest in a classic Eastern Equatorial Pacific paleoceanographic site at 3° 35.85' S, 83° 57.79' W, previous site of cores V19-29 and TR163-31, prompted a re-coring in 2009 using the recently developed CDH giant piston coring system on cruise KNR195-5. Giant piston core CDH-36 (3225 m depth, 42.61 m length) nearly triples the length of previous cores at this site. When spliced together with companion multicore MC-34A (0.36 m length), these two cores generate continuous stratigraphy throughout most of the middle Pleistocene, and include recognized stratigraphic tie points ash layer "L" (Ninkovich and Shackleton, 1975) and the extinction of pink G. ruber. A new age model utilizing Bayesian analysis of 17 N. dutertrei radiocarbon dates in MC-34A and the top 3.4 m of CDH-36, and alignment of a new CDH-36 δ18O record with the LR04 benthic stack (Lisiecki and Raymo, 2005), demonstrates that this new "Carnegie Platform" (CP) record extends from 0 to 720 ka (MIS 18), tripling the timescale of previous studies, with an average sedimentation rate of 7 cm/kyr. The CP C. wuellerstorfi δ18O and δ13C records reveal strong consistencies in timing and extent of glacial and interglacial episodes with previously studied regional records. Coarse fraction percentage (%CF) ([coarse fraction/bulk dry sample] * 100) is also evaluated throughout the CP core in order to qualitatively assess dissolution cycles. The CP %CF dataset primarily records Pleistocene dissolution cycles, yet exhibits variability representative of potential local bathymetric and hydrographic effects. The timing of %CF cyclicity is consistent with processes which affect basin-wide calcium carbonate dissolution cycles, including changes in terrestrial carbon input to the oceans and changes in water mass ventilation (Shackleton, 1977; Toggweiler et al., 2006; Sexton and Barker, 2012). Establishing the stratigraphy of the CP record provides the first step towards a more thorough and extended analysis of

  19. Stone tools associated with middle pleistocene fauna in the Toca da Esperanca, central region, Bahia state, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lumley, H. de; Lumley, M.A. de; Beltrao, M.C.M.C.

    1987-01-01

    Excavations (1 ) organized on a 12 m 2 surface have exhumed quaternary deposits under a 50 cm carbonate crust (layer I). These deposits were composed of angular broken stones compacted into breccia (layer II), yellowish sand (layer III) and reddish clayey sand (leyer IV), containing fossilized bones. These bones belong to extinct quaternary species, in particular Equidae. The uranium-thorium method was used to date several bone samples found in situ which gave these faunas an age of about 300,000 years. Several quartzite stone tools as well as fragments of quartzite and quartz pebbles were discovered among the fossil bones. In particular, the fragment of a pebble, broken by violent percussion and a chopper were found. The raw materials, quartzite and quartz, naturally absent from the cave could only have been brought there by prehistoric man. The Toca da Esperanca is, therefore, the most ancient site known on the American continent which contains evidence of early man. It provides evidence of human presence from the Middle Pleistocene period, about 300,000 years ago, well before the Calico sites in California (about 200,000 years) and the Santa Raimundo Nonato sites (about 30,000 years). In the light of these new discoveries, it is possible to surmise that Homo Erectus came from Asia very early during the Middle Pleistocene, passing the Behring Strait, during one of the big recessions in ocean levels which took place in the cold quaternary periods. (author) [pt

  20. Ground water '89

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1989-01-01

    The proceedings of the 5th biennial symposium of the Ground Water Division of the Geological Society of South Africa are presented. The theme of the symposium was ground water and mining. Papers were presented on the following topics: ground water resources; ground water contamination; chemical analyses of ground water and mining and its influece on ground water. Separate abstracts were prepared for 5 of the papers presented. The remaining papers were considered outside the subject scope of INIS

  1. Transient nature of late Pleistocene climate variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  2. 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

  3. Direct evidence for human reliance on rainforest resources in late Pleistocene Sri Lanka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Patrick; Perera, Nimal; Wedage, Oshan; Deraniyagala, Siran; Perera, Jude; Eregama, Saman; Gledhill, Andrew; Petraglia, Michael D; Lee-Thorp, Julia A

    2015-03-13

    Human occupation of tropical rainforest habitats is thought to be a mainly Holocene phenomenon. Although archaeological and paleoenvironmental data have hinted at pre-Holocene rainforest foraging, earlier human reliance on rainforest resources has not been shown directly. We applied stable carbon and oxygen isotope analysis to human and faunal tooth enamel from four late Pleistocene-to-Holocene archaeological sites in Sri Lanka. The results show that human foragers relied primarily on rainforest resources from at least ~20,000 years ago, with a distinct preference for semi-open rainforest and rain forest edges. Homo sapiens' relationship with the tropical rainforests of South Asia is therefore long-standing, a conclusion that indicates the time-depth of anthropogenic reliance and influence on these habitats. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  4. Leafcutter bee nests and pupae from the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits of southern California: Implications for understanding the paleoenvironment of the Late Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Rancho La Brea Tar Pits is the world’s richest and most important Late Pleistocene fossil locality and best renowned for numerous fossil mammals and birds excavated over the past century. Less researched are insects, even though these specimens frequently serve as the most valuable paleoenvironm...

  5. Reticulate Pleistocene evolution of Ethiopian rodent genus along remarkable altitudinal gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryja, Josef; Kostin, Danila; Meheretu, Yonas; Šumbera, Radim; Bryjová, Anna; Kasso, Mohammed; Mikula, Ondřej; Lavrenchenko, Leonid A

    2018-01-01

    The Ethiopian highlands are the most extensive complex of mountainous habitats in Africa. The presence of the Great Rift Valley (GRV) and the striking elevational ecological gradients inhabited by recently radiated Ethiopian endemics, provide a wide spectrum of model situations for evolutionary studies. The extant species of endemic rodents, often markedly phenotypically differentiated, are expected to possess complex genetic features which evolved asa consequence of the interplay between geomorphology and past climatic changes. In this study, we used the largest available multi-locus genetic dataset of the murid genus Stenocephalemys (347 specimens from ca 40 localities across the known distributional area of all taxa) to investigate the relative importance of disruptive selection, temporary geographic isolation and introgression in their adaptive radiations in the Pleistocene. We confirmed the four main highly supported mitochondrial (mtDNA) clades that were proposed as four species in a previous pilot study: S. albipes is a sister species of S. griseicauda (both lineages are present on both sides of the GRV), while the second clade is formed by two Afro-alpine species, S. albocaudata (east of GRV) and the undescribed Stenocephalemys sp. A (west of GRV). There is a clear elevational gradient in the distribution of the Stenocephalemys taxa with two to three species present at different elevations of the same mountain range. Surprisingly, the nuclear species tree corresponded only a little to the mtDNA tree. Multispecies coalescent models based on six nuclear markers revealed the presence of six separate gene pools (i.e. candidate species), with different topology. Phylogenetic analysis, together with the geographic distribution of the genetic groups, suggests a complex reticulate evolution. We propose a scenario that involves (besides classical allopatric speciation) two cases of disruptive selection along the elevational ecological gradient, multiple crosses of

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. (Plio-)Pleistocene alluvial-lacustrine basin infill evolution in a strike-slip active zone (Northern Andes, Western-Central Cordilleras, Colombia)

    OpenAIRE

    SUTER, F.; NEUWERTH, R.; GORIN, G.; GUZMÁN, C.

    2009-01-01

    The (Plio)-Pleistocene Zarzal Formation was deposited in the Cauca Depression and Quindío-Risaralda Basin between the Western and Central Cordilleras (Northern Andes). This area is structurally located on the transcurrent Romeral Fault System (RFS). Because of the interaction between the Nazca plate and the Chocó-Panamá block (an active indenter), the RFS strike-slip component changes direction around the study zone (dextral in the south, senestral in the north). Zarzal sediments are the olde...

  9. Late Pleistocene flank collapse of Zempoala volcano (Central Mexico) and the role of fault reactivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arce, José Luis; Macías, Rodolfo; García Palomo, Armando; Capra, Lucia; Macías, José Luis; Layer, Paul; Rueda, Hernando

    2008-11-01

    Zempoala is an extinct Pleistocene (˜ 0.7-0.8 Ma) stratovolcano that together with La Corona volcano (˜ 0.9 Ma) forms the southern end of the Sierra de las Cruces volcanic range, Central Mexico. The volcano consists of andesitic and dacitic lava flows and domes, as well as pyroclastic and epiclastic sequences, and has had a complex history with several flank collapses. One of these collapses occurred during the late Pleistocene on the S-SE flank of the volcano and produced the Zempoala debris avalanche deposit. This collapse could have been triggered by the reactivation of two normal fault systems (E-W and NE-SW), although magmatic activity cannot be absolutely excluded. The debris avalanche traveled 60 km to the south, covers an area of 600 km 2 and has a total volume of 6 km 3, with a calculated Heim coefficient (H/L) of 0.03. Based on the textural characteristics of the deposit we recognized three zones: proximal, axial, and lateral distal zone. The proximal zone consists of debris avalanche blocks that develop a hummocky topography; the axial zone corresponds with the main debris avalanche deposit made of large clasts set in a sandy matrix, which transformed to a debris flow in the lateral distal portion. The deposit is heterolithologic in composition, with dacitic and andesitic fragments from the old edifice that decrease in volume as bulking of exotic clasts from the substratum increase. Several cities (Cuernavaca, Jojutla de Juárez, Alpuyeca) with associated industrial, agricultural, and tourism activities have been built on the deposit, which pose in evidence the possible impact in case of a new event with such characteristics, since the area is still tectonically active.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Late Pleistocene lithostratigraphy and sequences in the southwestern Mesopotamia (Argentina): Evidences of the last interglacial stage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernesto, Brunetto; Soledad, Ferrero Brenda; Ignacio, Noriega Jorge

    2015-03-01

    The aim of this paper is to show the stratigraphic record of the Late Pleistocene corresponding to the distal region of the Paraná River basin. It displays sedimentological, paleontological and geochronological evidences that characterise the last interglacial-glacial cycle. In particular, strong environmental records are shown for the Last Interglacial Stage (LIS). Salto Ander Egg Formation (SAEF) is defined as a new lithostratigraphic unit representative of the Late Pleistocene in southwestern Mesopotamia. This unit is formed of complex fluvial deposits, which contains a heterogeneous collection of sub-environments, of ages ranging from 120 to 60 ky BP. The clast-supported gravel facies containing sparse boulders indicate high flow during a humid climate. The large and middle-scale architectures of fluvial sedimentary bodies evidence the relationship between the sediment accommodation and the sea level oscillations. Three sub-sequences identified in the succession suggest a transgressive trend during the MIS5e, a highstand stage in MIS5c, and a minor transgressive cycle during MIS3. A Brazilian faunal association collected at the bottom of the sequence and sedimentological interpretations display wet and warm climatic conditions, typical of tropical or subtropical environments. Such environmental conditions are characteristic of the maximum of the last interglacial stage (MIS5e) and show a signal stronger than the signal of the current interglacial stage. All these data show a direct correlation between the increases of paleodischarges and the elevation of the sea level. The whole sequence is completed with transitional swampy deposits, accumulated probably during the MIS3/MIS2 transition, and the typical loess of the Tezanos Pinto Formation, mantled during the Last Maximum Glacial.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Sequence stratigraphy of the Nukumaruan stratotype (Pliocene-Pleistocene, c. 2.08-1.63 Ma), Wanganui Basin, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abbott, S.T.; Naish, T.R.; Carter, R.M.; Pillans, B.J.

    2005-01-01

    Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene (c. 2.08-1.63 Ma) strata exposed in coastal cliffs along Nukumaru and Ototoka beaches near Wanganui, between the top of the Nukumaru Limestone and the base of the Butlers Shell Conglomerate, comprise 11 depositional sequences of a total thickness of c. 86 m. The sequences consist predominantly of siliciclastic shoreline facies. Non-marine facies (including palaeosols), and a variety of shallow-marine shellbed facies, are also represented. Patterns in facies composition and sequence architecture reveal three sequence motifs (Maxwell, Nukumaru, and Birdgrove) that represent progressively increasing maximum palaeowater depths within a broadly basin-margin palaeogeographic setting. The sequence motif changes systematically up section and records a lower order tectonic influence on accommodation that has modulated the stacking patterns of individual sequences. Correlation of the sequences with oxygen isotope stages 77-57 is achieved using the basin-wide Ototoka tephra, and indicates that the sequences accumulated in response to obliquity driven (41 k.y. duration) glacio-eustatic sea-level oscillations. Correlation of the Nukumaru coast sequences with other sections along basin strike, and the global oxygen isotope record indicates that (i) 500 k.y. (δ 18 O stages MIS 56-34) is missing at the unconformity between the Nukumaruan and overlying Castlecliffian stratotypes on the Wanganui coast, and (ii) the Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary lies within sequence NC7 at the base of the Lower Maxwell Formation. (author). 52 refs., 15 figs., 2 tabs

  16. Pliocene-Pleistocene (Nukumaruan) lithostratigraphy of the Tangoio block, and origin of sedimentary cyclicity, central Hawke's Bay, new Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haywick, D.W.; Lowe, D.A.; Beu, A.G.; Henderson, R.A.; Carter, R.M.

    1991-01-01

    Eleven formations are defined within the Pliocene-Pleistocene Petane Group in a 450 km 2 uplifted area of central Hawkes Bay (Tangoio block). In ascending order these are: Waipunga Formation (new), Esk Formation, Tutira Formation (new), Aropaoanui Formation (new), Darkys Spur Formation (new), Mairau Formation (new), Tangoio Formation, Te Ngaru Formation, Waipatiki Formation, Devils Elbow Formation, and Kaiwaka Formation. Petane Group strata are cyclothemic and alternate between coarse-grained lithofacies (greywacke gravel, siliciclastic and carbonate sand/sandstone and bioclastic limestone) ascribed to nonmarine and inner shelf depositional environments, and sandy/muddy-silt ('papa') ascribed to mid-shelf deposition. The Petane Group is characterised by remarkable lateral continuity of formations, contrasting with conspicuous vertical changes. This stratigraphic style is consistent with glacio-eustatic sea-level fluctuations as proposed by Vella and Beu and Edwards, whereby coarse-grained lithofacies were deposited during sea-level low stands and fine-grained lithofacies were deposited during sea-level high stands. Foraminifera extracted from low-stand lithofacies display opposite δ 18 O signatures to that predicted for glacio-eustasy, a result of synsedimentary seawater dilution during sea-level low stands, and/or isotopic exchange during meteoric diagenesis. Stratigraphic and sedimentary criteria indicate that the Petane Group was deposited under unique circumstances of rapid basinal subsidence and a high rate of sedimentation. This offers an explanation for the general rarity of cyclothemic successions in the Pliocene-Pleistocene stratigraphic record. (author). 45 refs., 9 figs., 1 tab

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Late Pleistocene deglaciation chronology in the NW of the Iberian Peninsula using cosmic-ray produced 21Ne in quartz

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernandez Mosquera, D.; Marti, K.; Romani, J.R. Vidal; Weigel, A.

    2000-01-01

    Late Pleistocene glaciations in the NW Iberian Peninsula over Serra de Queixa and Serra de Xures, all with granite substrata, were studied by mass spectrometry using cosmogenic 21 Ne. Rock cores were drilled in glacial polished surfaces and push-moraine boulders, and were analyzed to determine their integral exposure time to cosmic rays. First results, which are consistent with the relative geomorphologic model estimates, allow the identification of at least three different glacial stages, with the latest terminating about 15 ka BP

  20. Sea ice dynamics across the Mid-Pleistocene transition in the Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Detlef, H; Belt, S T; Sosdian, S M; Smik, L; Lear, C H; Hall, I R; Cabedo-Sanz, P; Husum, K; Kender, S

    2018-03-05

    Sea ice and associated feedback mechanisms play an important role for both long- and short-term climate change. Our ability to predict future s