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Sample records for pleistocene superieur-holocene ancien

  1. L'astronomie des Anciens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nazé, Yaël

    2009-04-01

    Quelle que soit la civilisation à laquelle il appartient, l'être humain cherche dans le ciel des réponses aux questions qu'il se pose sur son origine, son avenir et sa finalité. Le premier mérite de ce livre est de nous rappeler que l'astronomie a commencé ainsi à travers les mythes célestes imaginés par les Anciens pour expliquer l'ordre du monde et la place qu'ils y occupaient. Mais les savoirs astronomiques passés étaient loin d'être négligeables et certainement pas limités aux seuls travaux des Grecs : c'est ce que l'auteur montre à travers une passionnante enquête, de Stonehenge à Gizeh en passant par Pékin et Mexico, fondée sur l'étude des monuments anciens et des sources écrites encore accessibles. Les tablettes mésopotamiennes, les annales chinoises, les chroniques médiévales, etc. sont en outre d'une singulière utilité pour les astronomes modernes : comment sinon remonter aux variations de la durée du jour au cours des siècles, ou percer la nature de l'explosion qui a frappé tant d'observateurs en 1054 ? Ce livre offre un voyage magnifiquement illustré à travers les âges, entre astronomie et archéologie.

  2. Groupement des anciens du CERN et de l'ESO

    CERN Document Server

    GAC-EPA

    2011-01-01

    Le GAC organise chaque mois des permanences avec entretiens individuels. La prochaine permanence se tiendra le Mardi 13 avril de 13h30 à 16h00 Salle de conférence de l’Association du personnel Les permanences suivantes auront lieu les mardis 4 mai, 1er juin, 7 septembre, 5 octobre, 2 novembre et 7 décembre. Les permanences du Groupement des Anciens sont ouvertes aux bénéficiaires de la Caisse de pensions (y compris les conjoints survivants !) et à tous ceux qui approchent de la retraite. Nous invitons vivement ces derniers à s’associer à notre groupement en se procurant, auprès de l’Association du personnel, les documents nécessaires. * * * * * Le Comité du GAC-EPA vous informe de la tenue de son Assemblée générale ordinaire 2011 Vendredi 25 mars 2011 à 14h00 dans l’Amphith&e...

  3. Groupement des anciens du CERN et de l'ESO

    CERN Document Server

    GAC-EPA

    2011-01-01

    Le GAC organise chaque mois des permanences avec entretiens individuels. La prochaine permanence se tiendra le Mardi 8 mars de 13h30 à 16h00 Salle de conférence de l’Association du personnel Les permanences suivantes auront lieu les mardis 13 avril, 4 mai, 1er juin, 7 septembre, 5 octobre, 2 novembre et 7 décembre. Les permanences du Groupement des Anciens sont ouvertes aux bénéficiaires de la Caisse de pensions (y compris les conjoints survivants !) et à tous ceux qui approchent de la retraite. Nous invitons vivement ces derniers à s’associer à notre groupement en se procurant, auprès de l’Association du personnel, les documents nécessaires. * * * * * Le Comité du GAC-EPA vous informe de la tenue de son Assemblée générale ordinaire 2011 Vendredi 25 mars 2011 à 14h00 dans l’Amphithé&...

  4. Le Proche-Orient ancien à la lumière des sciences sociales

    OpenAIRE

    Angelini, Anna; Bert, Jean-François; Bodi, Daniel; Boyarin, Daniel; Glassner, Jean-Jacques; Kalinowski, Isabelle; Koch Piettre, Renée; Malkin, Irad; Polak, Frank; Vârtejanu-Joubert, Madalina; Vârtejanu‑Joubert, Madalina

    2013-01-01

    Les articles réunis dans ce volume explorent les multiples relations entre le Proche-Orient ancien comme objet d'étude et les méthodes des sciences sociales -- l'anthropologie, la sociologie, la socio-linguistique, l'histoire des mentalités. Le corpus est organisé en deux parties : la première porte sur la manière dont les spécialistes de l'Antiquité se sont approprié ces dispositifs heuristiques et la deuxième, sur les modalités selon lesquelles les socioanthropologues ont abordé le domaine ...

  5. Pleistocene Paleoart of Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert G. Bednarik

    2014-02-01

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

  6. 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.

  7. Patrick Saurin, Teocuicatl. Chants sacrés des anciens Mexicains

    OpenAIRE

    Gruzinski, Serge

    2007-01-01

    Patrick Saurin s’est penché sur l’un des nombreux manuscrits laissés par le franciscain Bernardino de Sahagùn : les teocuicatl, ces hymnes sacrés composés en l’honneur des anciens dieux mexicains. Vraisemblablement d’origine mexica, ces chants ont été rassemblés à Tepepulco vers 1560. S’agit- il de textes archaïques comme la critique s’est accordée à le penser ? L’auteur propose d’y voir, au moins pour partie d’entre eux, des hymnes portant la « marque d’une réécriture, voire d’une écriture r...

  8. 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.

  9. Le corps, instrument de connaissance du monde: la connaissance des Anciens Toltèques

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    Mabel Franzone

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Cet article traite le corps comme instrument de la connaissance de l’univers. Le corps s’étend vers des contrées infinies, se prolonge, atteint d’autres règnes, cherche l’unité absolue de ce qu’on appelle l’intention. L’intention est le mot clé pour les Anciens Toltèques, réunissant sous ce mot le visible et l’invisible, la volonté de la Nature et celle de l’univers. Le corps n’est qu’un instrument et pour arriver à le parfaire devons chercher la totalité de nous-mêmes, réussir la communication de deux côtés, droit et gauche, aller à la quête d’autres expériences, inimaginables. Les conditions nécessaires sont d’avoir un corps puissant et d’emmagasiner de l’énergie. Tout l’enseignement des sorciers est fondé dans un vrai changement de conception du monde et de la perception de ce monde. L’objectif final est celui de pouvoir choisir sa propre mort ; la vraie, la seule, l’unique liberté de l’homme.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Des vitraux par milliers… Bilan d’un inventaire : le recensement des vitraux anciens de la France

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Françoise Gatouillat

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Le Recensement des vitraux anciens de la France sera bientôt achevé, conduit dans le cadre du ministère de la Culture depuis 1972 et intégré aux missions de l’Inventaire général depuis 1979. Cet inventaire méthodique et exhaustif est régulièrement publié dans des ouvrages conçus comme des instruments de travail qui visent à apporter au monde de la recherche une documentation précise, critique et présentée avec objectivité, sur toutes les œuvres de ce domaine patrimonial, sans hiérarchie. Ce recensement fait émerger une multiple et inépuisable matière à réflexion, qui alimente des problématiques communes à d’autres disciplines de l’histoire de l’art (usages techniques, questions de la commande artistique, de la diffusion des formes, etc.. Un retour sur la documentation accumulée et sur les travaux qui se sont ajoutés au fil de l’expérience permet d’apprécier l’évolution du champ scientifique que constitue le vitrail, qui a beaucoup gagné en participant d’une vision élargie.Soon will be completed the Recensement des vitraux anciens de la France, France’s general inventory of stained-glass windows from the Middle Ages to the end of the Ancien Régime, which has been carried out since 1972 under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, in charge since 1979 of the Inventaire général. The results of this methodical and exhaustive inventory are published at regular intervals in works which are designed as tools for research, providing precise critical documentation covering all the works in this particular field of the national heritage, objectively and without hierarchical judgement. The survey work has drawn attention to stained–glass windows as an extremely rich and varied source, informing problematics shared by other disciplines in art history (technical usages, problems relating to artistic patronage, to the diffusion of forms, etc. An overview of the documentation accumulated over the years

  13. 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...

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Aimola

    2014-09-01

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

  18. 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 ...

  19. Révision systématique des Hipparion sensu lato (Perissodactyla, Equidae de l'Ancien Monde

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zouhri, S.

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available La systématique des Hipparion sensu lato de l’Ancien Monde se caractérise par un foisonnement anormal des espèces rapportées à ce groupe et par une vive controverse sur le statut supraspécifique de celles-ci d’où une confusion générale de la phylogénie de ce groupe et bien évidemment des interprétations biochronologiques et biogéographiques qui en découlent. L’analyse critique de la systématique de chacune de ces nombreuses espèces d’Hipparion [s. l.] a permis une discussion et une réévaluation de la validité de ces dernières et la suggestion de synonymies et de regroupements de certaines espèces et l’élaboration d’une nouvelle classification supraspécifique de ce groupe. Quatre genres ont été alors redéfinis : Hippotherium, Hipparion, Cremohipparion et Proboscidipparion. Ce dernier taxon est subdivisé en trois sous-genres : Proboscidipparion, Plesiohipparion et Eurygnathohippus.La sistemática de Hipparion sensu lato del Antiguo Mundo se caracteriza por una multiplicación excesiva de especies relacionadas con este grupo y una marcada controversia sobre el status supraespecífico que trae consigo una confusión general de su filogenia, así como de las interpretaciones biocronológicas y biogeográficas que se deducen. El análisis crítico de la sistemática de cada una de las numerosas especies de Hipparion [s. l.] del Antiguo Mundo ha permitido una discusión y una reevaluación de la validez de las mismas, así como una nueva clasificación supraespecífica de este grupo. Cuatro géneros han sido redefinidos: Hippotherium, Hipparion, Cremohipparion y Proboscidipparion. Este último taxon ha sido subdividido en tres subgéneros: Proboscidipparion, Plesiohipparion y Eurygnathohippus. La validez, las sinonimias y los reagrupamientos de las especies relacionadas con cada uno de estos taxones han sido discutidos y analizados en detalle.

  20. 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.

  1. Melun (Seine-et-Marne, ancien prieuré Saint-Sauveur : première synthèse des campagnes 2000-2005 

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabrice Henrion

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available En 1995, l’étude de la crypte  du début du xie siècle, conservée sous le chevet de l’église de l’ancien prieuré Saint-Sauveur , nous persuadait de l’indéniable intérêt du site et d’un fort potentiel archéologique qu’il était nécessaire de saisir si l’on voulait comprendre son origine et son évolution. Les travaux de fouille engagés par le Service municipal de l’archéologie dans les années 1997-1999 (fouille de la crypte et des premières travées de la nef auraient pu apporter cette connaissan...

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Histoire des prisons et de l’administration pénitentiaire française de l’Ancien Régime à nos jours

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Carlier

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Les ambitions de cette synthèse sont modestes : indiquer à grands traits l’évolution de l’administration pénitentiaire française, depuis les dernières années de l’Ancien Régime jusqu’à nos jours (début du XXIe siècle.Ce texte a été complété par une bibliographie sommaire (ci-dessous. Il peut servir d’introduction à la chronologie des textes relatifs aux peines et aux prisons.La plupart des illustrations de cet article ont été puisées dans les richesses, à mon gré trop méconnues, du Musée national des prisons de Fontainebleau (voir le site web et profité de la généreuse disponibilité de sa conservatrice, Catherine Prade.

  6. 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

  7. Lethal interpersonal violence in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nohemi Sala

    Full Text Available Evidence of interpersonal violence has been documented previously in Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, but only very rarely has this been posited as the possible manner of death. Here we report the earliest evidence of lethal interpersonal violence in the hominin fossil record. Cranium 17 recovered from the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene site shows two clear perimortem depression fractures on the frontal bone, interpreted as being produced by two episodes of localized blunt force trauma. The type of injuries, their location, the strong similarity of the fractures in shape and size, and the different orientations and implied trajectories of the two fractures suggest they were produced with the same object in face-to-face interpersonal conflict. Given that either of the two traumatic events was likely lethal, the presence of multiple blows implies an intention to kill. This finding shows that the lethal interpersonal violence is an ancient human behavior and has important implications for the accumulation of bodies at the site, supporting an anthropic origin.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  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. 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.

  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. 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 ...

  14. 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).

  15. La renaissance du Jardin des Plantes de Montpellier. Passé, présent et avenir du plus ancien jardin botanique de France

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    François Michaud

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Le Jardin des Plantes de Montpellier est le plus ancien jardin botanique de France, l’un des rares à ne pas avoir été déplacé sous la pression urbaine et surtout à être resté universitaire depuis ses origines, il y a plus de quatre siècles. Sa reconnaissance patrimoniale au XXe siècle, au travers de ses classements au titre des Sites (1982 puis des Monuments Historiques (1992, a permis d’entamer un vaste programme de restauration qui vise, en ce début de 3ème millénaire, à lui redonner le rayonnement qu’il a connu en élevant la botanique, avant tout médicale, au rang de science à part entière. Il remplira également son rôle de médiateur vers le grand public en illustrant les rapports homme/plantes sur les thématiques désormais incontournables pour l’avenir de notre planète de la biodiversité et du développement durable.The Jardin des Plantes in Montpellier is the oldest botanical garden in France. It has remained a University property since its creation over four centuries ago and is one of the few gardens to have resisted the crush of urban development. In recognition of its importance, the Gardens’ classification as a protected nature preserve ("Site classé" - 1982 and among the French National Monuments (1992 paved the way for funding an expansive restoration effort. The third millenium will restore the Jardin des Plantes to its original glory, when it elevated botanics – initially mostly confined to medical purposes – to the rank of a science. This unique site will also return to its public service role, illustrating the relationship between man and plants and the now critical concerns of biodiversity and sustainability.

  16. 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.

  17. Restauration automatique de films anciens

    OpenAIRE

    Decencière , Etienne

    1997-01-01

    Most motion pictures produced before the fifties have a very short life span. They are very damaged and their condition continues to deteriorate. It is necessary and urgent to restore and preserve them. Besides, if these films were restored they could be used to feed the rapidly increasing audio visual market. Classical restoration methods can correct some defects but not all. Computer based restoration methods are paid more attention, but most of them treat the frames manually, one by one, r...

  18. 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.

  19. Contribution à l'évaluation de la vitesse d'érosion des cirques glaciaires de quelques massifs anciens européens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francis Huguet

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Les données morphométriques d'un échantillon de trente cirques glaciaires situés dans les massifs anciens européens (Forêt Noire, Sud-Ouest de l'Irlande et Pays de Galles permettent d'estimer la vitesse de l'érosion glaciaire. La hauteur de la paroi donne un ordre de grandeur de la vitesse du creusement, sous réserve que la forme en creux ne soit pas en partie un héritage du relief préglaciaire (alvéole ou gradin d'érosion. Si l'on admet que l'érosion mécanique liée à la présence du glacier a pu s'exercer pendant la durée cumulée de toutes les périodes froides depuis 2,5 MA, soit pendant environ 1,8 MA, et que l'abaissement du plancher pendant les Interglaciaires a été négligeable, on aboutit à une vitesse moyenne comprise entre 0,07 et 0,34 mm/an, sensiblement inférieure aux valeurs de l'érosion glaciaires mesurées in situ ou calculées à partir des flux sédimentaires. Toutefois, dans l'hypothèse où le creusement glaciaire aurait été réalisé pendant une seule période froide, il serait légitime de multiplier ces ordres de grandeur par 20, ce qui aboutit à des valeurs du même ordre de grandeur que les valeurs publiées.Morphometric data from a sample of thirty glacial cirques located in European basement regions (Black Forest, South-West Ireland and Wales assess the rate of glacial erosion. The height of the wall, measured from the summit down to the floor, indicates a value of the average rate of erosion, on condition that the hollow was not partly inherited from the pre-glacial topography (such as structural basins or erosion scarps. Admitting that the mechanical erosion due to the glacier was at work during the cumulated time of all the cold periods since 2.5 MA, that is during about 1.8 MA, and admitting that the lowering of the floor during the Interglacial periods can be neglected, the average rate of glacial erosion can be estimated, ranging from 0.07 to 0.34 mm per year. These values are one

  20. 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.

  1. 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 ...

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Travail, immigration et relations sociales à travers les parcours d’individus et familles d’une ville de l’Ancien Régime (Turin, xviiie siècle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatrice Zucca Micheletto

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Cet article envisage une utilisation des archives judiciaires qui, loin de refaire l’histoire sociale de la criminalité, a pour but d’interroger le système des normes et valeurs qui affectent les trajectoires professionnelles d’individus et familles qui fréquentent ou habitent la ville de Turin au xviiie siècle. Dans l’histoire des métiers artisanaux, abordés par l’unique biais des sources produites par les corporations elles-mêmes, la continuité et la stabilité du travail constituent le véritable fil rouge des démonstrations. Cela laisse dans l’ombre plusieurs phénomènes et notamment tout ce qui a trait aux trajectoires des individus dans l’espace urbain, ou ce qui concerne le temps et les modalités d’exercice d’un métier, le rôle du cycle de vie individuel et familial.À ce propos, les archives judiciaires turinoises – criminelles comme civiles – avec leur souci de prouver l’ancrage et la stabilité des individus dans le tissu urbain, face à une grande mobilité de la population, nous permettent d’apporter un nouveau regard sur le rapport entre individus et pratiques des métiers dans les milieux urbains d’Ancien Régime.This paper aims to use trial and justice archives, not to return to a social history of crime, but to question the system of norms and values at the core of professional paths (specifically crafts of individuals and families that lived or stayed temporarily in Turin in xviiith century.Scholars who studied “work” traditionally focused on guilds archives and underlined stability and continuity of work in the artisan ateliers. Yet, this historiography let in the shadow some interesting social phenomenon, moreover the nature of relation between professional and personal paths of artisans in the city, time and way of exercising crafts, the role played by individual and family life-cycle. Finally, in this paper I suggest that through the study of two justice and trial archives

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Les hydrocarbures aromatiques polycycliques dans l'environnement : la réhabilitation des anciens sites industriels The Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in the Environment : the Former Industrial Sites Remediation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Costes J. M.

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Les hydrocarbures aromatiques polycycliques ou HAP peuvent être d'origine naturelle mais ils proviennent principalement des processus de pyrolyse. On peut les retrouver dans les sols de certains anciens sites industriels. Cela peut être le cas des sites d'anciennes usines à gaz. Même si aucune conséquence sur la santé humaine n'a été signalée et même si les risques paraissent virtuels, le principe de précaution rend nécessaire de s'occuper des risques liés à ces anciens sites industriels. Gaz de France, propriétaire de 467 sites d'anciennes usines à gaz assume l'héritage industriel dans le cadre d'un protocole signé avec le ministère de l'Environnement. Après une étude des sols, une évaluation des risques est réalisée. En fonction des résultats de cette évaluation des risques et de l'usage du site (actuel et prévu, des solutions de traitement peuvent être mises en Suvre. Parmi les techniques applicables aux sols pollués par des HAP, un intérêt particulier s'est porté sur les traitements biologiques, en pleine évolution, qui offrent une solution économique bien adaptée au traitement de grands volumes de sols souillés par une pollution organique moyennement concentrée. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs can be found under natural conditions but they can be produced by pyrolysis processes. They can be found in former industrial sites subsoil, especially on Manufactured Gas Plant sites (MGP sites. Gaz de France has inherited the patrimony of former French gas companies on nationalisation in 1946; consequently, Gaz De France is still the owner of 467 of manufactured gas plants. Even if no impact on human health has been detected and even if the risks seem to be virtual, Gaz de France has to prevent any environmental consequence due to the possible presence of residues in the subsoil of the sites: a protocol has been signed with the French Ministry of Environment. Following the investigations on the site, a

  3. À propos du lexique juridique en ancien français avant le 13e siècle : la Règle de saint Benoît et le Perceval de Chrétien de Troyes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schauwecker Yela

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available La plus ancienne traduction de la {em Règle} de saint Benoît en franc{c}ais, rédigée en dialecte picard-wallon, date de la première moitié ou du milieu du {sc xii}$^{m e}$~siècle. On veut montrer que son auteur, pour qui le changement de langue, n'est pas le premier objectif s'efforce de transférer le texte de son milieu originel de l'Antiquité tardive dans le monde chevaleresque-féodal du {sc xii}$^{m e}$~siècle. Même sans nécessité apparente, quand il a eu à sa disposition l'équivalent du mot employé dans la {em Regula}, il substitue aux mots latins des termes juridiques et féodaux franc{c}ais. par Son texte, en tant que document de droit pour les moines, devient ainsi une source de vocabulaire juridique franc{c}ais avant le {sc xiii}$^{m e}$~siècle, c'est-à-dire dans un temps où les documents juridiques en langue vulgaire sont extrêmement rares. Cela est dû au fait que la justice, dans le Nord, fondée sur des coutumes, utilisait la langue vernaculaire à l'oral. La terminologie juridique franc{c}aise est bien enracinée dans la langue courante de l'époque~: leur insertion dans les Lais et les Chansons de geste en fait preuve. Mais cette terminologie est souvent méconnue par la lexicographie traditionnelle de l'ancien franc{c}ais, en raison des contextes littéraires et figurés. par

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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....

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. 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.

  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. 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'.

  14. The academisation of technical education at the end of the Ancien Régime La academización de la educación técnica afines del Antiguo Régimen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agustín ESCOLANO BENITO

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the genesis of academised technical education at the end of the Ancien Régime. The institutionalisation of the training of professionals of navigation, industry, commerce and agriculture emerged in the second half of the XVIII century in close relation to the programs of economic promotion, of diffusion of science and modern techniques and the pedagogical impulse of the Enlightenment. This process of academisation of the new knowledge would lead to the excision of the workshop- school and the revision of the teaching of the guilds, giving rise to a new model of education of the young, in contrast to the philological paradigm which had been predominant since the Renaissance in secondary schools. This new model was characterised by curricular planning according to the propositions of empirical science, mathematics and useful knowledge, by the discourse of the practicality of knowledge and by the new ethos of the middle class.Este trabajo examina la génesis de la educación técnica academizada a finales del Antiguo Régimen. La institucionalización de la formación de los profesionales de la navegación, la industria, el comercio y la agricultura emerge en la segunda mitad del siglo XVIII en estrecha relación con los programas de fomento económico, de difusión de la ciencia y de la técnica modernas y del impulso pedagógico de la Ilustración. Este proceso de academización de los nuevos saberes desencadena la escisión escuela-taller y la revisión de la enseñanza gremial, dando origen a un nuevo modelo de educación de la juventud, contrapuesto al paradigma filológico dominante desde el Renacimiento en las escuelas secundarias y caracterizado por una ordenación curricular conformada a los presupuestos de la ciencia empírica, la matemática y los conocimientos útiles, por el discurso de la practicidad del saber y por el nuevo ethos de la burguesía.

  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. 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)

  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. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. "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?

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. TERRESTRIAL EFFECTS OF NEARBY SUPERNOVAE IN THE EARLY PLEISTOCENE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2016-07-20

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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Biotic turnover rates during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stivrins, Normunds; Soininen, Janne; Amon, Leeli; Fontana, Sonia L.; Gryguc, Gražyna; Heikkilä, Maija; Heiri, Oliver; Kisielienė, Dalia; Reitalu, Triin; Stančikaitė, Miglė; Veski, Siim; Seppä, Heikki

    2016-11-01

    The Northern Hemisphere is currently warming at the rate which is unprecedented during the Holocene. Quantitative palaeoclimatic records show that the most recent time in the geological history with comparable warming rates was during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition (PHT) about 14,000 to 11,000 years ago. To better understand the biotic response to rapid temperature change, we explore the community turnover rates during the PHT by focusing on the Baltic region in the southeastern sector of the Scandinavian Ice Sheet, where an exceptionally dense network on microfossil and macrofossil data that reflect the biotic community history are available. We further use a composite chironomid-based summer temperature reconstruction compiled specifically for our study region to calculate the rate of temperature change during the PHT. The fastest biotic turnover in the terrestrial and aquatic communities occurred during the Younger Dryas-Holocene shift at 11,700 years ago. This general shift in species composition was accompanied by regional extinctions, including disappearance of mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) and reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) and many arctic-alpine plant taxa, such as Dryas octopetala, Salix polaris and Saxifraga aizoides, from the region. This rapid biotic turnover rate occurred when the rate of warming was 0.17 °C/decade, thus slightly lower than the current Northern Hemisphere warming of 0.2 °C/decade. We therefore conclude that the Younger Dryas-Holocene shift with its rapid turnover rates and associated regional extinctions represents an important palaeoanalogue to the current high latitude warming and gives insights about the probable future turnover rates and patterns of the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem change.

  10. Paleochemistry of Plio-Pleistocene Lake Turkana, Kenya. [Alkalinity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cerling, T.

    1979-01-01

    The paleochemisry of Plio-Pleistocene Lake Turkana can be estimated by using the chemistry of lakes from the Eastern Rift of Africa as an analogue. Most modern East Africa lakes occupy closed basins; their chemistries follow an evaporation trend defined by the precipitation of certain mineral phases with increasing alkalinity. Estimates of paleoalkalinity can be used to closely estimate the chemical composition of ancient lakes. Three methods are used to estimate paleoalkalinity. Diatoms, molluscs, and fish have certain metabolic requirements that are dependent on pH, alkalinity, or calcium levels; thus fauna and flora can be used as paleoalkalinity indicators. Exchangeable cations on clay minerals can also be used because the relative concentrations of sodium and calcium in lake waters are related to alkalinity. Absence or presence of certain minerals also can serve as a paleoalkalinity indicator. Although the latter two techniques give estimates of paleoalkalinity that are averaged over several hundred or thousand years, their estimates agree with the instantaneous estimates based on biologic considerations. This study shows that the earliest lake phase was very fresh and contained until the end of the Kubi Algi Formation. The Lower Member of the Koobi Fora Formation is shown to have been a fresh- to brackish-water lake. From the beginning of Upper Member time (about 1.8 MY ago) to the present, the lake occupying the Turkana Depression has varied from a brackish lake that overflowed to a closed basin lake that fell below overflow level and whose alkalinity rose to about 200 meq/l.

  11. Enamel hypoplasia in the middle pleistocene hominids from Atapuerca (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Pérez, P J

    1995-03-01

    The prevalence and chronology of enamel hypoplasias were studied in a hominid dental sample from the Sima de los Huesos (SH) Middle Pleistocene site at the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos, northern Spain). A total of 89 permanent maxillary teeth, 143 permanent mandibular teeth, and one deciduous lower canine, belonging to a minimum of 29 individuals, were examined. Excluding the antimeres (16 maxillary and 37 mandibular cases) from the sample, the prevalence of hypoplasias in the permanent dentition is 12.8% (23/179), whereas the deciduous tooth also showed an enamel defect. No statistically significant differences were found between both arcades and between the anterior and postcanine teeth for the prevalence of hypoplasias. In both the maxilla and the mandible the highest frequency of enamel hypoplasias was recorded in the canines. Only one tooth (a permanent upper canine) showed two different enamel defects, and most of the hypoplasias were expressed as faint linear horizontal defects. Taking into account the limitations that the incompleteness of virtually all permanent dentitions imposes, we have estimated that the frequency by individual in the SH hominid sample was not greater than 40%. Most of the hypoplasias occurred between birth and 7 years (N = 18, X = 3.5, SD = 1.3). Both the prevalence and severity of the hypoplasias of the SH hominid sample are significantly less than those of a large Neandertal sample. Furthermore, prehistoric hunter-gatherers and historic agricultural and industrial populations exhibit a prevalence of hypoplasias generally higher than that of the SH hominids. Implications for the survival strategies and life quality of the SH hominids are also discussed.

  12. Canyon Creek: A late Pleistocene vertebrate locality in interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Florence R.; Hamilton, Thomas D.; Hopkins, David M.; Repenning, Charles A.; Haas, Herbert

    1981-09-01

    The Canyon Creek vertebrate-fossil locality is an extensive road cut near Fairbanks that exposes sediments that range in age from early Wisconsin to late Holocene. Tanana River gravel at the base of the section evidently formed during the Delta Glaciation of the north-central Alaska Range. Younger layers and lenses of fluvial sand are interbedded with arkosic gravel from Canyon Creek that contains tephra as well as fossil bones of an interstadial fauna about 40,000 years old. Solifluction deposits containing ventifacts, wedge casts, and rodent burrows formed during a subsequent period of periglacial activity that took place during the maximum phase of Donnelly Glaciation about 25,000-17,000 years ago. Overlying sheets of eolian sand are separated by a 9500-year-old paleosol that may correlate with a phase of early Holocene spruce expansion through central Alaska. The Pleistocene fauna from Canyon Creek consists of rodents (indicated by burrows), Mammuthus primigenius (woolly mammoth), Equus lambei (Yukon wild ass), Camelops hesternus (western camel), Bison sp. cf. B. crassicornis (large-horned bison), Ovis sp. cf. O. dalli (mountain sheep), Canis sp. cf. C. lupus (wolf), Lepus sp. cf. L. othus or L. arcticus (tundra hare), and Rangifer sp. (caribou). This assemblage suggests an open landscape in which trees and tall shrubs were either absent or confined to sheltered and moist sites. Camelops evidently was present in eastern Beringia during the middle Wisconsin interstadial interval but may have disappeared during the following glacial episode. The stratigraphic section at Canyon Creek appears to demonstrate that the Delta Glaciation of the north-central Alaska Range is at least in part of early Wisconsin age and was separated from the succeeding Donnelly Glaciation by an interstadial rather than interglacial episode.

  13. Late Pleistocene glacial fluctuations in Cordillera Oriental, subtropical Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Mateo A.; Kaplan, Michael R.; Strelin, Jorge A.; Astini, Ricardo A.; Schaefer, Joerg M.; Caffee, Marc W.; Schwartz, Roseanne

    2017-09-01

    The behavior of subtropical glaciers during Middle to Late Pleistocene global glacial maxima and abrupt climate change events, specifically in Earth's most arid low-latitude regions, remains an outstanding problem in paleoclimatology. The present-day climate of Cordillera Oriental, in arid northwestern Argentina, is influenced by shifts in subtropical climate systems, including the South American Summer Monsoon. To understand better past glacier-subtropical climates during the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 26.5-19 ka) and other time periods, we combined geomorphic features with forty-two precise 10Be ages on moraine boulders and reconstructed paleo-equilibrium line altitudes (ELA) at Nevado de Chañi (24°S) in the arid subtropical Andes. We found a major glacial expansion at ∼23 ± 1.6 ka, that is, during the global LGM. Additional glacial expansions are observed before the global LGM (at ∼52-39 ka), and after, at 15 ± 0.5 and 12 ± 0.6 ka. The ∼15 ka glacial event was found on both sides of Chañi and the ∼12 ka event is only recorded on the east side. Reconstructed ELAs of the former glaciers exhibit a rise from east to west that resembles the present subtropical climate trajectory from the Atlantic side of the continent; hence, we infer that this climate pattern must have been present in the past. Based on comparison with other low-latitude paleoclimate records, such as those from lakes and caves, we infer that both temperature and precipitation influenced past glacial occurrence in this sector of the arid Andes. Our findings also imply that abrupt deglacial climate events associated with the North Atlantic, specifically curtailed meridional overturning circulation and regional cooling, may have had attendant impacts on low subtropical Southern Hemisphere latitudes, including the climate systems that affect glacial activity around Nevado de Chañi.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-02-01

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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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. 

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Molecular biogeography of Europe: Pleistocene cycles and postglacial trends

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schmitt Thomas

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The climatic cycles with subsequent glacial and intergalcial periods have had a great impact on the distribution and evolution of species. Using genetic analytical tools considerably increased our understanding of these processes. In this review I therefore give an overview of the molecular biogeography of Europe. For means of simplification, I distinguish between three major biogeographical entities: (i "Mediterranean" with Mediterranean differentiation and dispersal centres, (ii "Continental" with extra-Mediterranean centres and (iii "Alpine" and/or "Arctic" with recent alpine and/or arctic distribution patterns. These different molecular biogeographical patterns are presented using actual examples. Many "Mediterranean" species are differentiated into three major European genetic lineages, which are due to glacial isolation in the three major Mediterranean peninsulas. Postglacial expansion in this group of species is mostly influenced by the barriers of the Pyrenees and the Alps with four resulting main patterns of postglacial range expansions. However, some cases are known with less than one genetic lineage per Mediterranean peninsula on the one hand, and others with a considerable genetic substructure within each of the Mediterranean peninsulas, Asia Minor and the Maghreb. These structures within the Mediterranean sub-centres are often rather strong and in several cases even predate the Pleistocene. For the "Continental" species, it could be shown that the formerly supposed postglacial spread from eastern Palearctic expansion centres is mostly not applicable. Quite the contrary, most of these species apparently had extra-Mediterranean centres of survival in Europe with special importance of the perialpine regions, the Carpathian Basin and parts of the Balkan Peninsula. In the group of "Alpine" and/or "Arctic" species, several molecular biogeographical patterns have been found, which support and improve the postulates based on

  7. Indian Ocean circulation changes over the Middle Pleistocene Transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

    The Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT; 1.4 - 0.4 Ma) represents a climatic shift towards climate cycles at a quasi-100-kyr frequency. Although, several high-resolution records covering the MPT from globally distributed archives exist, there is only sparse evidence on changes in heat exchange between the Pacific and Indian Oceans, which represents a crucial part of the global thermohaline circulation (THC). Deciphering the influence of this heat exchange via the Indonesian Throughflow (ITF) is an important step in understanding the causes of the MPT. The Leeuwin Current off Western Australia is directly influenced by the ITF and can therefore be used to reconstruct ITF variability during the MPT. Today, the Leeuwin Current is the only southward flowing eastern boundary current in the southern hemisphere. The onset of the current is unknown but is proposed to have occurred 1 Ma and was likely related to significant changes in ITF dynamics during the MPT We present the first continuous reconstruction of changes in the Leeuwin Current during the MPT using data from IODP Expedition 356 Site U1460. The site is located at 29°S in the path of the current. High sedimentation rates ( 30 cm/ka) at Site U1460 provide the opportunity for high-resolution reconstruction of the MPT. We reconstruct paleoenvironmental variability by combining XRF, organic geochemistry, ICP-MS and XRD data with shipboard data, to reconstruct Leeuwin Current and ITF variability. Initial analyses show clear indications that upwelling off Western Australia intensified during the MPT, indicated by increased primary productivity related to increased nutrient levels, from 900-600 ka. Our results also suggest that the west Australian current (WAC) strengthened during this time supplying cool eutrophic waters from the high southern latitutes to the site. This intensification of the WAC may have had major implications for the Indian Ocean current system, but also the THC at large. This seems to be coupled with

  8. Temporal evolution of the Roccamonfina volcanic complex (Pleistocene), Central Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouchon, V.; Gillot, P. Y.; Quidelleur, X.; Chiesa, S.; Floris, B.

    2008-10-01

    The Roccamonfina volcanic complex (RVC), in southern Italy, is an Early to Middle Pleistocene stratovolcano sharing temporal and morphological characteristics with the Somma-Vesuvius and the Alban Hills; both being associated with high volcanic hazard for the cities of Naples and Rome, respectively. The RVC is important for the understanding of volcanic evolution in the Roman and Campanian volcanic provinces. We report a comprehensive study of its evolution based on morphological, geochemical and K-Ar geochronological data. The RVC was active from c.a. 550 ka to 150 ka. Its evolution is divided into five stages, defining a volcanic pulse recurrence time of c.a. 90-100 kyr. The two initial stages, consisted in the construction of two successive stratovolcanoes of the tephrite-phonolite, namely "High-K series". The first stage was terminated by a major plinian eruption emplacing the trachytic Rio Rava pumices at 439 ± 9 ka. At the end of the second stage, the last High-K series stratovolcano was destroyed by a large sector collapse and the emplacement of the Brown Leucitic Tuff (BLT) at 353 ± 5 ka. The central caldera of the RVC is the result of the overlapping of the Rio Rava and of the BLT explosions. The plinian eruption of the BLT is related to the emptying of a stratified, deep-seated HKS magma chamber during the upwelling of K series (KS) magma, marking a major geochemical transition and plumbing system re-organization. The following stage was responsible for the emplacement of the Lower White Trachytic Tuff at 331 ± 2 ka, and of basaltic-trachytic effusive products erupted through the main vent. The subsequent activity was mainly restricted to the emplacement of basaltic-shoshonitic parasitic cones and lava flows, and of minor subplinian deposits of the Upper White Trachytic Tuff between 275 and 230 ka. The northern crater is most probably a maar that formed by the phreatomagmatic explosion of the Yellow Trachytic Tuff at 230 ka. The latest stage of

  9. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene Glacier Fluctuations in southernmost Patagonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menounos, B.; Maurer, M.; Clague, J. J.; osborn, G.; Ponce, F.; Davis, P. T.; Rabassa, J.; Coronato, A.; Marr, R.

    2011-12-01

    Summer insolation has been proposed to explain long-term glacier fluctuations during the Holocene. If correct, the record of glacier fluctuations at high latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere should differ from that in the Northern Hemisphere. Testing this insolation hypothesis has been hampered by dating uncertainties of many Holocene glacier chronologies from Patagonia. We report on our ongoing research aimed at developing a regional glacier chronology at the southern end of the Andes north and west of Ushuaia, Argentina. We have found evidence for an advance of cirque glaciers at the end of the Pleistocene; one or locally two closely spaced moraines extend up to 2 km beyond Little Ice Age moraines. Radiocarbon dating of terrestrial macrofossils recovered from basal sediments behind two of these moraines yielded ages of 10,320 ± 25 and 10,330 ± 30 14C yr BP. These moraines may record glacier advances coeval with the Antarctic Cold Reversal; surface exposure dating of these moraines is currently in progress to test this hypothesis. We find no evidence of Holocene moraines older than 6800 14C yr BP, based on the distribution of Hudson tephra of that age. At some sites, there is evidence for an early Neoglacial advance of glaciers slightly beyond (Peru. We have documented multiple wood mats with stumps in growth position separated by till units in a 100 m section of the northeast lateral moraine at Stoppani Glacier (54.78 S, 68.98 W), 50 km west of Ushuaia. Ten radiocarbon ages on these wood mats range in age from 3510 ± 15 to 135 ± 15 14C yr BP. The mats decrease in age up-section; many overlap with published age ranges for Neoglacial advances in western Canada. Taken together, these data: a) do not support the summer insolation hypothesis for Holocene glacier fluctuations in southernmost Patagonia; b) confirm paleobotanical evidence for a warm, dry early Holocene; and c) suggest that many Neoglacial advances in southernmost Patagonia and western North America

  10. Geomorphic controls on Pleistocene knickpoint migration in Alpine valleys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Fox, Matt; Moore, Jeffrey R.; Brosda, Julian; Krautblatter, Michael; Loew, Simon

    2014-05-01

    Recent insights into sub-glacial bedrock stress conditions suggest that the erosional efficiency of glaciers may reduce markedly following a major erosional cycle [Leith et al., 2013]. This implies that the formation of large glacial valleys within the Alps is likely to have occurred shortly after the onset of 100 ky glacial-interglacial cycles (at the mid-Pleistocene Revolution (MPR)). The majority of landscape change since this time may have therefore been driven by sub-aerial processes. This hypothesis is supported by observations of hillslope and channel morphology within Canton Valais (Switzerland), where major tributary valleys display a common morphology along their length, hinting at a shared geomorphic history. Glaciers currently occupy the headwaters of many catchments, while the upper reaches of rivers flow across extensive alluvial planes before abruptly transitioning to steep channels consisting of mixed bedrock and talus fan deposits. The rivers then converge to flow out over the alluvial plane of the Rhone Valley. Characteristically rough topographies within the region are suggested to mark the progressive transition from a glacial to fluvially-dominated landscape, and correlate well with steepened river channel sections determined from a 2.5 m resolution LiDAR DEM. We envisage a landscape in which ongoing tectonic uplift drives the emergence of Alpine bedrock through massive sedimentary valley infills (currently concentrated in the Rhone Valley), whose elevation is fixed by the consistent fluvial baselevel at Lake Geneva. As fluvial incision ceases at the onset of glaciation, continued uplift causes the formation of knickpoints at the former transition from bedrock to sedimentary infill. These knickpoints will then propagate upstream during subsequent interglacial periods. By investigating channel morphologies using an approach based on the steady-state form of the stream power equation, we can correlate steepened channel reaches (degraded

  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. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. Origin of late pleistocene formation water in Mexican oil reservoirs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Birkle, P. [Instituto de Investigaciones Electricas, Cuernavaca (Mexico)

    2004-07-01

    . For wellhead samples, a 20 liter-sampling-reagent was previously filled with N{sub 2}-gas for the collection and phase separation of the pressurized gas-water-crude oil mixture. No differences in {sup 14}C-concentrations were detected applying, both, conventional and AMS-techniques. In contradiction to the expected 'fossil age' of reservoir water as part of a stagnant hydraulic system, measured {sup 14}C-concentrations between 0.89 pmC and 31.86 pmC indicate a late Pleistocene-early Holocene, regional event for the infiltration of surface water into the reservoir. The variety in water mineralization from meteoric (TDS{sub max} = 0.5 g/l) to hyper-saline composition (TDS{sub max} = 338 g/l) is not caused by halite dissolution from adjacent salt domes, as shown by elevated Br/Cl ratios. In contrary, the linear correlation between {sup 18}O and Cl values reflect varying mixing proportions of two components - meteoric water and evaporated seawater. Instead of water/rock-interaction, evaporation of seawater at the surface prior to infiltration represents the principal process for fluid enrichment in {sup 18}O and chlorine, with maximum values of 17.2 %o and 228 g/l, respectively. The young residence time of formation water in Mexican oil reservoirs implies following: - The common assumption of 'hydraulically-frozen' reservoirs is not correct, as main descending fluid migration occurred during glacial period. Probably, major infiltration processes are related to periods with climatic changes and increased humidity - as observed for the adjacent Yucatan region in SE-Mexico during early-mid Holocene (6,000 yr BP) (Metcalfe et al. 2000) - with the probable transgression of Mexican Gulf seawater into the recent Mexican coastal plain. - The common hypothesis of hydrocarbon maturation within Jurassic organic-rich layers, and its subsequent expulsion and migration into Cretaceous/Tertiary sedimentary units must be expanded by a last-step-process: As glacial

  15. 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

  16. Morphometric variation in Plio-Pleistocene hominid distal humeri.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lague, M R; Jungers, W L

    1996-11-01

    The magnitude and meaning of morphological variation among Plio-Pleistocene hominid distal humeri have been recurrent points of disagreement among paleoanthropologists. Some researchers have found noteworthy differences among fossil humeri that they believe merit taxonomic separation, while others question the possibility of accurately sorting these fossils into different species and/or functional groups. Size and shape differences among fossil distal humeri are evaluated here to determine whether the magnitude and patterns of these differences can be observed within large-bodied, living hominoids. Specimens analyzed in this study have been assigned to various taxa (Australopithecus afarensis, A. africanus, A. anamensis, Paranthropus, and early Homo) and include AL 288-1m, AL 288-1s, AL 137-48a, AL 322-1, Gomboré IB 7594, TM 1517, KNM-ER 739, KNM-ER 1504, KMN-KP 271 (Kanapoi), and Stw 431. Five extant hominoid populations are sampled to provide a standard by which to consider differences found between the fossils, including two modern human groups (Native American and African American), one group of Pan troglodytes, and two subspecies of Gorilla gorilla (G.g. beringei, G.g. gorilla). All possible pairwise d values (average Euclidena distances) are calculated within each of the reference populations using an exact randomization procedure. This is done using both raw linear measurements as well as scale-free shape data created as ratios of each measurement to the geometric mean. Differences between each pair of fossil humeri are evaluated by comparing their d values to the distribution of d values found within each of the reference populations. Principal coordinate analysis and an unweighted pair group method with arithmetic averages (UPGMA) cluster analysis are utilized to further assess similarities and differences among the fossils. Finally, canonical variates analysis and discriminant analysis are employed using all hominoid samples in order to control for

  17. Plio-Pleistocene magnetostratigraphy of the Turkana basin, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepre, C. J.; Quinn, R.; Feibel, C. S.; Brown, F. H.; Kent, D. V.

    2012-12-01

    Archaeological and fossil sites from the Turkana basin provide a unique record of important human evolutionary junctures, which have been linked to terrestrial environmental change as a consequence of late Cenozoic climate phenomenon. However, because of low geochronological resolution, spatial discontinuities, and the episodic nature of sedimentation in the half-graben basins of the East African Rift System, it has been difficult to directly connect the terrestrial sites with marine archives of Pliocene and Pleistocene climate. For the purpose of addressing these issues, a magnetic polarity stratigraphy and a corresponding geochronology are presented for 12 sampling sites spanning about 400 m of continental sediments that crop out in eastern (Areas 118 and 130 of the Karari ridge, Areas 102 and 104 of the Koobi Fora ridge, Areas 107 and 123 of Bara Hasuma) and western (Kokiselei, Naiyena Engol, Kalochoro, Lomekwi, South Turkwel, and Kanapoi) parts of the Turkana basin. Characteristic magnetizations isolated through thermal demagnetization experiments on mudstone specimens pass reversal tests and are indistinguishable in mean direction regardless if samples were collected from ancient fluvial floodplain or lacustrine strata of correlative stratigraphic intervals. The sequence of the composite paleomagnetic reversal stratigraphy consists of 15 magnetozones that vary from less than a meter to tens of meters thick and can be unambiguously correlated within limits of the previously established tephrochronology to the Gilbert through Matuyama portion of the Geomagnetic Polarity Time Scale dated to about 4.0-1.5 Ma. Sedimentation rates through lacustrine intervals (e.g., 22-29 cm/kyr) are comparable with high-fidelity marine cores. This factor coupled with copious amounts of magnetic mineral detritus from basin-bounding rift volcanics probably contributes to a high natural remanent magnetization of the sediments and the recording of temporally brief magnetozones (e

  18. Geologic records of Pleistocene, Holocene and Anthropocene beach profiles?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, Amy; Choi, Jeong-Heon; Dosseto, Anthony

    2017-04-01

    The Anthropocene Working Group recently concluded that we have entered a new Epoch; starting during the last century when carbon dioxide, temperatures, and sea level all exceeding previous Holocene measurements. Climate change models predict a 1m rise in sea-level by 2100 coupled with increased storm intensity. Determining how vulnerable coasts will respond to global warming in the future, requires past records of sea-level and storm impacts to be deciphered. Paying specific attention to any changes prior to, and since, the onset of the Industrial Revolution. Coastal change over centennial time-scales has long fallen within a knowledge gap that exists between our understanding of shoreline behaviour measured over decades and that inferred from the landscape over millennia. Insight on shoreline behaviour across spatial and temporal scales is gained using computers to integrate models of short-term morphodynamics along beaches with longer-term coastal landscape evolution models. However, limitations exist as process-based engineering models depend on wave climate and beach profile data that is restricted to regional/historical records, while large-scale coastal behaviour models are based on general chronostratographic data from topographic profiles, interpolated cores, and isochrons extrapolated from deep radiocarbon ages. Here we demonstrate a unique methodology combining state-of-the-art geophysics, luminescence, and remote sensing techniques on prograded barriers to extract comprehensive chronostratigraphic records. Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) data document beach and dune stratigraphy at decimetre resolution. Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) directly date the formation of paleo-beachfaces and dunes. Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) image the lateral extent of strandplain ridge morphology. The resulting record of paleo-beach profiles spanning from the present-day beach through Holocene and Pleistocene barriers, enables our in-depth understanding of

  19. Reactivity of Pleistocene aged organic matter in the Siberian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davydov, S.; Vonk, J. E.; Mann, P. J.; Davydova, A.; Sobczak, W. V.; Schade, J. D.; Bulygina, E. B.; Zimov, S. A.; Holmes, R. M.

    2011-12-01

    Half of the global stock of soil organic carbon (OC) is stored in Arctic permafrost. About one third of this pool consists of so-called yedoma, organic-rich deposits that were formed during the Pleistocene. Previous studies show rapid respiration of yedoma upon thawing, with the potential release of large quantities of relict OC into the contemporary C cycle. The fluvial and coastal reactivity of this OC, however, and its fate remain unclear. Duvannyi Yar is a well-studied yedoma exposure on the banks of Kolyma River in Northeastern Siberia. It can serve as a model for the >7000 km long East Siberian Arctic coastline that is dominated by similarly exposed yedoma cliffs, and is increasingly vulnerable to erosion with climate warming-induced decreases in sea-ice, and increases in storms and wave-fetch. Permafrost thaw causes the slopes of Duvannyi Yar to retreat 3-5 m/y, producing mudstreams that drain into the Kolyma River. These streams are heavily loaded with freshly thawed yedoma sediments (ca. 650 g/L; POC ca. 10 g/L; DOC ca. 150 mg/L). Partial CO2 pressure in these streams was on average 8400 ppm (stdev 2100; n=4) whereas the Kolyma River at the stream mouth contained CO2 concentrations of ca. 900 ppm (stdev 90; n=4), suggesting substantial outgassing during transport. We performed biological oxygen demand assays in combination with a set of incubations to estimate OC lability in a range of dilutions of Duvannyi Yar water with Kolyma River and East Siberian Sea water, in combination with nutrient and enzymatic activity rate analysis to identify potential limitation processes. Our goal was to assess carbon consumption rates and the effect of different microbial communities along its transport towards the ocean. O2 loss (% after 24h) increased significantly from undiluted Kolyma water to increasingly spiked dilutions with filtered Duvannyi Yar filtered water; 0%/0.5%/1%/10%/100% dilutions showed O2 losses of 1.6%, 3.5%, 5.1%, 13% and 35%, respectively. However, C

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2000-01-01

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

  4. 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...

  5. 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...

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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...

  10. 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,

  11. 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.

  12. 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,

  13. 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

  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. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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...

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. A comparative study of frontal bone morphology among Pleistocene hominin fossil groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athreya, Sheela

    2009-12-01

    Features of the frontal bone that are conventionally used to distinguish among fossil hominin groups were quantitatively examined. Fifty-five fossil crania dating from the early to the late Pleistocene were analyzed. Using a modified pantograph, outlines of the frontal bone were collected along the midsagittal and two parasagittal planes. The profile from nasion to bregma, as well as two profiles above the medial and lateral sections of the orbit, respectively, extending from the orbital margin to the coronal suture were traced. The outlines were measured using Elliptical Fourier Function Analysis (EFFA), which enabled a quantification of aspects of the frontal bone that have historically been described primarily in nonmetric or linear terms. Four measurements were obtained: 1) overall morphology as expressed in the Fourier harmonic amplitudes; 2) maximum projection of the supraorbital torus at three points along the browridge (glabella and the medial and lateral aspects of the torus above the orbit); 3) maximum distance of the frontal squama from the frontal chord, capturing forehead curvature; and 4) nasion-bregma chord length. The results indicate that the midsagittal profile is significantly different among all Pleistocene groups in analyses that include both size and shape, as well as size-adjusted data. Homo erectus is significantly different from the late Pleistocene groups (Neandertals and early modern H. sapiens) in glabellar projection. Anatomically modern humans are significantly different from all other groups in both raw and size-standardized analyses of all three outlines that captured overall morphology, as well as forehead curvature and lateral supraorbital torus prominence, and middle Pleistocene Homo are significantly different in both medial and lateral overall parasagittal form. However, for the majority of analyses there were no significant differences among the Pleistocene archaic groups in supraorbital torus projection, frontal squama

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Late Pleistocene Stratigraphy and Palaeobotany of the Isles of Scilly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scourse, J. D.

    1991-12-01

    A re-evaluation of the Pleistocene stratigraphy of the Isles of Scilly has enabled the formal definition of eight lithostratigraphic units of member status grouped into two formations. A chronology of events has been provided by radiocarbon (14C) determinations, optical and thermoluminescene (TL) dates. Intersite correlations have been strengthened by palynology, which has aided palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. The defined units have been incorporated into two lithostratigraphic models, one for the `northern' (glacial) Scillies and one for the `southern' (extra-glacial) Scillies. Raised beach sediments of the Watermill Sands and Gravel in the southern Scillies are overlain by the Porthloo Breccia, a unit of soliflucted material derived exclusively from the weathering of local granite. Organic sequences at Carn Morval, Watermill Cove, Porth Askin, Porth Seal and Bread and Cheese Cove occur within the Porthloo Breccia, and are interpreted as the infillings of ponds associated with active solifluction. Radiocarbon determinations from these organic sediments are critical because they pre-date units associated with a glacial event. The 14C determinations indicate deposition of the organic material between 34500-800+885 (Q-2410) and 21500-800+890 (Q-2358) years BP and provide a maximum age for the glacial event and the first radiometric dates for the coastal `head' sediments of southwest England. The pollen assemblages from these organic sites all record open grassland vegetation, and represent the earliest vegetational record for the Scillies. High Pinus values are interpreted as evidence of climatic deterioration. In the southern Scillies, the Porthloo Breccia is overlain by the Old Man Sandloess, a coarse aeolian silt with subdominant fine sand, TL-dated to 18600-3700+3700 years (QTL-ld and lf; Wintle 1981) and optically dated to 20000-7000+7000 and 26000-9000+10000 years (two samples; 738al and 741al; Smith et al. 1990). This material occurs in a variety of facies

  10. 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.

  11. Pleistocene glaciation of the Jackson Hole area, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Licciardi, Joseph M.; Good, John M.; Jaworowski, Cheryl

    2018-01-24

    Pleistocene glaciations and late Cenozoic offset on the Teton fault have played central roles in shaping the scenic landscapes of the Teton Range and Jackson Hole area in Wyoming. The Teton Range harbored a system of mountain-valley glaciers that produced the striking geomorphic features in these mountains. However, the comparatively much larger southern sector of the Greater Yellowstone glacial system (GYGS) is responsible for creating the more expansive glacial landforms and deposits that dominate Jackson Hole. The glacial history is also inextricably associated with the Yellowstone hotspot, which caused two conditions that have fostered extensive glaciation: (1) uplift and consequent cold temperatures in greater Yellowstone; and (2) the lowland track of the hotspot (eastern Snake River Plain) that funneled moisture to the Yellowstone Plateau and the Yellowstone Crescent of High Terrain (YCHT).The penultimate (Bull Lake) glaciation filled all of Jackson Hole with glacial ice. Granitic boulders on moraines beyond the south end of Jackson Hole have cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages of ~150 thousand years ago (ka) and correlate with Marine Isotope Stage 6. A thick loess mantle subdues the topography of Bull Lake moraines and caps Bull Lake outwash terraces with a reddish buried soil near the base of the loess having a Bk horizon that extends down into the outwash gravel. The Bull Lake glaciation of Jackson Hole extended 48 kilometers (km) farther south than the Pinedale, representing the largest separation of these two glacial positions in the Western United States. The Bull Lake is also more extensive than the Pinedale on the west (22 km) and southwest (23 km) margins of the GYGS but not on the north and east. This pattern is explained by uplift and subsidence on the leading and trailing “bow-wave” of the YCHT, respectively.During the last (Pinedale) glaciation, mountain-valley glaciers of the Teton Range extended to the western edge of Jackson Hole and built

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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...

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  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. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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....

  14. 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

  15. 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...

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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

  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. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  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. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Phylogeography of the Alcippe morrisonia (Aves: Timaliidae: long population history beyond late Pleistocene glaciations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Shouhsien

    2009-06-01

    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

  12. 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)

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

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    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.

  14. 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

  15. 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)

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. The First Published History of Universal Architectural Models. Jean-Nicholas-Louis Durand’s Recueil et parallèle des édifices de tout genre, anciens et modernes (Paris 1800, and the Extended Italian Edition of Giuseppe Antonelli (Venice 1833

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincenzo Fontana

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available “Recueil et parallèle des édifices de tout genre, anciens et modernes”, published in Paris in 1799-1800 by Jean- Nicholas-Louis Durand, at the height of the positivistic climate engendered by the contemporary culture of encyclopedism, plays an important role in architectural historiography. The volume allowed architectural students and architectural enthusiasts alike the first opportunity to study a vast range of architectural design models of all periods and places organised into typological categories, illustrated in highly didactic and homogenous drawings. The immediate success of the “Recueil” was guaranteed by the simultaneous publication (in 1800 of an explanatory text to accompany the illustrative material, written by Jacques Guillaume Legrand in accordance with Durand. More than thirty years later, the Venetian editor Giuseppe Antonelli proposed a re-launch of the “Recueil” intended to meet the contemporaneous historical and critical context of modern Europe, publishing a bilingual Italian-French edition of highly commercially ambitious scope. The Venetian “Raccolta”, which appeared in 1833, united Legrand’s text with Durand’s illustrations, - and importantly included almost double the illustrations- with the addition of antique buildings, and also included modern architectural models, alongside contemporary Italian, French and German architectural design projects. This contribution intends to set Antonelli’s ambitious undertaking into the contemporaneous critical and vivacious academic cultural climate of the Venice of the 1830’s, and also includes a thorough examination of the additional illustrations that were added by the Venetian publisher to the original French canon.

  20. Institutions, property and, and economic growth: Back to the passage from the Ancien Régime to liberalism in Portugal Instituições, propriedade e crescimento económico: de regresso à passagem do Antigo Regime para o liberalismo em Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciano Amaral

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The liberal revolution was the biggest institutional breaking point in Portuguese history. It created the modern state and modern private property. This change was particularly complex in Portugal due to the peculiar nature of the country’s Ancien Régime. The aristocracy was excessively dependent on service to the Crown, thus keeping it as an un-entrepreneurial class, and leading to the underdevelopment of property rights. The nineteenth century was, thus, mostly a period of transition, where the difficulties in destroying the old organization and creating a new one were daunting. But once it was done the Portuguese economy started showing relatively robust signs of growth.A revolução liberal foi a maior rutura institucional da história portuguesa. Criou o Estado moderno e a ­propriedade privada moderna. Esta mudança foi particularmente complexa devido à natureza peculiar do Antigo Regime existente em Portugal. A aristocracia era demasiado dependente da prestação de serviços à Coroa, o que a manteve como uma classe não-empresarial e conduziu ao subdesenvolvimento dos direitos de propriedade. O século XIX foi, assim, sobretudo um período de transição, caracterizado pela dificuldade extrema em destruir a velha organização e criar uma nova. Mas uma vez operada a transição, a economia portuguesa começou a mostrar sinais relativamente robustos de crescimento económico.

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

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    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

  2. 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.

  3. 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...

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  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.

    2015-02-01

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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)

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  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. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 29 August 2013 - J.-F. Jauslin, Directeur de l’Office fédéral de la culture (OFC) Ambassadeur suisse auprès de l’UNESCO et de l’OIF au 1er septembre 2013 Confédération suisse visite le centre visiteurs de l’expérience ATLAS ainsi que la caverne expérimentale d'ATLAS avec P. Jenny, ancien Porte-parole d'ATLAS. M. Bona, Conseiller du Directeur général pour les relations avec les Organisations internationales présent tout au long.

    CERN Multimedia

    Jean-Claude Gadmer

    2013-01-01

    29 August 2013 - J.-F. Jauslin, Directeur de l’Office fédéral de la culture (OFC) Ambassadeur suisse auprès de l’UNESCO et de l’OIF au 1er septembre 2013 Confédération suisse visite le centre visiteurs de l’expérience ATLAS ainsi que la caverne expérimentale d'ATLAS avec P. Jenny, ancien Porte-parole d'ATLAS. M. Bona, Conseiller du Directeur général pour les relations avec les Organisations internationales présent tout au long.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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...

  17. 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)

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  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 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. The bony labyrinth of the middle Pleistocene Sima de los Huesos hominins (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quam, Rolf; Lorenzo, Carlos; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia-Téllez, Ana; Arsuaga, Juan Luis

    2016-01-01

    We performed 3D virtual reconstructions based on CT scans to study the bony labyrinth morphology in 14 individuals from the large middle Pleistocene hominin sample from the site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) in the Sierra de Atapuerca in northern Spain. The Atapuerca (SH) hominins represent early members of the Neandertal clade and provide an opportunity to compare the data with the later in time Neandertals, as well as Pleistocene and recent humans more broadly. The Atapuerca (SH) hominins do not differ from the Neandertals in any of the variables related to the absolute and relative sizes and shape of the semicircular canals. Indeed, the entire Neandertal clade seems to be characterized by a derived pattern of canal proportions, including a relatively small posterior canal and a relatively large lateral canal. In contrast, one of the most distinctive features observed in Neandertals, the low placement of the posterior canal (i.e., high sagittal labyrinthine index), is generally not present in the Atapuerca (SH) hominins. This low placement is considered a derived feature in Neandertals and is correlated with a more vertical orientation of the ampullar line (LSCm  PPp), and third part of the facial canal (LSCm < FC3). Some variation is present within the Atapuerca (SH) sample, however, with a few individuals approaching the Neandertal condition more closely. In addition, the cochlear shape index in the Atapuerca (SH) hominins is low, indicating a reduction in the height of the cochlea. Although the phylogenetic polarity of this feature is less clear, the low shape index in the Atapuerca (SH) hominins may be a derived feature. Regardless, cochlear height subsequently increased in Neandertals. In contrast to previous suggestions, the expanded data in the present study indicate no difference across the genus Homo in the angle of inclination of the cochlear basal turn (COs < LSCm). Principal components analysis largely confirms these observations. While not

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Steppic environments at the end of the upper pleistocene in southern Tunisia (Oued el Akarit)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brun, Annik; Guerin, Claude; Levy, Alain; Riser, Jean; Rognon, Pierre

    The cross section of the Oued el Akarit, 25 km North of Gabès, is of considerable importance for the paleoenvironmental reconstitution of South Tunisia at the end of the Upper Pleistocene. Grey or black silts and clays and greenish gray sands which overlap them, contain many paleontological remains: rodents, birds and Rhinoceros bones, Gasteropods, Foraminifera, Ostracoda and pollen. All these sedimentological, faunistic or botanical indications allow to consider that this area, between approximatively 35,000 and 22,000 yr. B.P., belonged to the steppe domaine. But this steppe was probably more dense and more diversified than the present-day steppe which receives 170 mm of rain (annual average). This conclusion is in good agreement with the other paleoenvironmental data from the Chott Djerid, the Matmata plateau or the Gulf of Gabès cores, areas situated at about 100 km to the West, the South or the East of the Oued el Akarit.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MASSIMO DELFINO

    2004-12-01

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

  7. Testing the correlation of fragmented pollen records of the middle and late Pleistocene temperate stages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuneš, Petr; Odgaard, Bent Vad

    Quaternary temperate stages have long been described based on changing pollen abundances of various tree taxa in lacustrine sediments. Later, attempts have been made to assign such biostratigraphic units to distinct marine isotope stages (MIS). Existing continuous chronosequences from Southern...... records depends on site-to-site correlations. This comparison has often been performed on a visual basis, lacking clearly defined protocols and statements of underlying assumptions. Here I test the correlation of well and poorly known pollen records of the middle- and late-Pleistocene temperate stages...... from Northern-Central Europe and evaluate the usefulness of several numerical techniques. TWINSPAN analysis identifies groups of temperate stages based on presence/absence of their indicative taxa and may be useful for distinguishing between older and younger interglacials. Site-to-site sequence...

  8. 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...

  9. A revision of hominin fossil teeth from Fontana Ranuccio (Middle Pleistocene, Anagni, Frosinone, Italy).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubini, Mauro; Cerroni, Vittorio; Festa, Giulia; Sardella, Raffaele; Zaio, Paola

    2014-12-01

    The Fontana Ranuccio hominin teeth (FR, Latium, Italy) are dated to the Middle Pleistocene. In previous studies these teeth were classified as two lower (left and right) second molars, one lower left central incisor and a badly worn incisor crown, the exact position of which could not be determined. In 2012 these remains were acquired by the Anthropological Service of S.B.A.L. (Italian Ministry of Culture) and for this reason re-analysed. In a thorough revision we have reassessed them both morphologically and dimensionally as two lower (left and right) first molars, one lower left lateral incisor and a possible upper left canine. The comparison with penecontemporaneous and diachronic samples shows that the Fontana Ranuccio teeth are morphologically similar to Atapuerca-Sima de los Huesos, Arago XIII and Neanderthal samples. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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 sea ice extent, however, hinges on a greater understanding of past sea ice dynamics. Here we investigate sea ice changes in the eastern Bering Sea prior to, across, and after the Mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT). The sea ice record, based on the Arctic sea ice biomarker IP 25 and related open water proxies from the International Ocean Discovery Program Site U1343, shows a substantial increase in sea ice extent across the MPT. The occurrence of late-glacial/deglacial sea ice maxima are consistent with sea ice/land ice hysteresis and land-glacier retreat via the temperature-precipitation feedback. We also identify interactions of sea ice with phytoplankton growth and ocean circulation patterns, which have important implications for glacial North Pacific Intermediate Water formation and potentially North Pacific abyssal carbon storage.

  13. 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.

  14. Behaviour of the Pleistocene marsupial lion deduced from claw marks in a southwestern Australian cave.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arman, Samuel D; Prideaux, Gavin J

    2016-02-15

    The marsupial lion, Thylacoleo carnifex, was the largest-ever marsupial carnivore, and is one of the most iconic extinct Australian vertebrates. With a highly-specialised dentition, powerful forelimbs and a robust build, its overall morphology is not approached by any other mammal. However, despite >150 years of attention, fundamental aspects of its biology remain unresolved. Here we analyse an assemblage of claw marks preserved on surfaces in a cave and deduce that they were generated by marsupial lions. The distribution and skewed size range of claw marks within the cave elucidate two key aspects of marsupial lion biology: they were excellent climbers and reared young in caves. Scrutiny of >10,000 co-located Pleistocene bones reveals few if any marsupial lion tooth marks, which dovetails with the morphology-based interpretation of the species as a flesh specialist.

  15. Bone accumulation by leopards in the Late Pleistocene in the Moncayo massif (Zaragoza, NE Spain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Víctor Sauqué

    Full Text Available Eating habits of Panthera pardus are well known. When there are caves in its territory, prey accumulates inside them. This helps to prevent its kill from being stolen by other predators like hyenas. Although the leopard is an accumulator of bones in caves, few studies have been conducted on existing lairs. There are, however, examples of fossil vertebrate sites whose main collecting agent is the leopard. During the Late Pleistocene, the leopard was a common carnivore in European faunal associations. Here we present a new locality of Quaternary mammals with a scarce human presence, the cave of Los Rincones (province of Zaragoza, Spain; we show the leopard to be the main accumulator of the bones in the cave, while there are no interactions between humans and leopards. For this purpose, a taphonomic analysis is performed on different bone-layers of the cave.

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Pleistocene niche stability and lineage diversification in the subtropical spider Araneus omnicolor (Araneidae.

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    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

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

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    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

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

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    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.

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

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    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. 

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  6. Late Pleistocene-Holocene cataclysmic eruptions at Nevado de Toluca and Jocotitlan volcanoes, central Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macias, J.L.; Garcia, P.A.; Arce, J.L.; Siebe, C.; Espindola, J.M.; Komorowski, J.C.; Scott, K.

    1997-01-01

    This field guide describes a five day trip to examine deposits of Late Pleistocene-Holocene cataclysmic eruptions at Nevado de Toluca and Jocotitlan volcanoes in central Mexico. We will discuss the stratigraphy, petrology, and sedimentological characteristics of these deposits which provide insights into the eruptive history, type of volcanic activity, and transport and emplacement mechanisms of pyroclastic materials. These parameters will allow us to discuss the kinds of hazards and the risk that they pose to populations around these volcanoes. The area to be visited is tectonically complex thus we will also discuss the location of the volcanoes with respect to the tectonic environment. The first four days of the field trip will be dedicated to Nevado de Toluca Volcano (19 degrees 09'N; 99 degrees 45'W) located at 23 km. southwest of the City of Toluca, and is the fourth highest peak in the country, reaching an elevation of 4,680 meters above sea level (m.a.s.l.). Nevado de Toluca is an andesitic-dacitic stratovolcano, composed of a central vent excavated upon the remains of older craters destroyed by former events. Bloomfield and Valastro, (1974, 1977) concluded that the last cycle of activity occurred nearly equal 11,600 yr. ago. For this reason Nevado de Toluca has been considered an extinct volcano. Our studies, however, indicate that Nevado de Toluca has had at least two episodes of cone destruction by sector collapse as well as several explosive episodes including plinian eruptions and dome-destruction events. These eruptions occurred during the Pleistocene but a very young eruption characterized by surge and ash flows occurred ca. 3,300 yr. BP. This new knowledge of the volcano's eruptive history makes the evaluation of its present state of activity and the geological hazards necessary. This is important because the area is densely populated and large cities such as Toluca and Mexico are located in its proximity.

  7. 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.

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

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    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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. A consistent magnetic polarity stratigraphy of Plio-Pleistocene fluvial sediments from the Heidelberg Basin (Germany)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheidt, Stephanie; Hambach, Ulrich; Rolf, Christian

    2014-05-01

    Viernheim and Heidelberg. All things considered, the application of magnetic polarity stratigraphy on Pliocene and Pleistocene fluvial sediments from the Heidelberg Basin provides a consistent and independent chronology and opens the perspective for global correlations where other approaches hardly come to results. [1] GABRIEL, G., ELLWANGER, D., HOSELMANN, C. & WEIDENFELLER, M. 2008. Preface: The HeidelbergBasin Drilling Project. E & G (Quaternary Science Journal), 57, 253-260. [2] ELLWANGER, D. & WIELAND-SCHUSTER, U. 2012. Fotodokumentation und Schichtenverzeichnis der Forschungsbohrungen Heidelberg UniNord I und II. LGRB-Informationen, 26, 25-86. [3] KIRSCHVINK, J. L. 1980. The least-squares line and plane and the analysis of palaeomagnetic data. Geophysical Journal, Royal Astronomical Society, 62, 699-718. [4] ROLF, C., HAMBACH, U. & WEIDENFELLER, M. 2008. Rock and palaeomagnetic evidence for the Plio-/Pleistocene palaeoclimatic change recorded in Upper Rhine Graben sediments (Core Ludwigshafen-Parkinsel), Neth. J. Geosci., 87 (1), 41-50. [5] KNIPPING, M. 2008. Early and Middle Pleistocene pollen assemblages of deep core drillings in the northern Upper Rhine Graben, Germany, Neth. J. Geosci., 87(1), 51-65. [6] HEUMANN, G., pers. Comm. [7] HAHNE, J., pers. Comm.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  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. 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.

  1. 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...

  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. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-05-01

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

  5. Reconstruction of Late Pleistocene Paleoenvironments using bulk geochemistry of paleosols from the Lake Victoria Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beverly, Emily J.; Peppe, Daniel J.; Driese, Steven G.; Blegen, Nick; Faith, J. Tyler; Tryon, Christian A.; Stinchcomb, Gary E.

    2017-11-01

    The impact of changing environments on the evolution and dispersal of Homo sapiens is highly debated, but few data are available from equatorial Africa. Lake Victoria is the largest freshwater lake in the tropics and is currently a biogeographic barrier between the eastern and western branches of the East African Rift. The lake has previously desiccated at 17 ka and again at 15 ka, but little is known from this region prior to the Last Glacial Maximum. The Pleistocene terrestrial deposits on the northeast coast of Lake Victoria (94 to 36 ka) are ideal for paleoenvironmental reconstructions where volcaniclastic deposits (tuffs), fluvial deposits, tufa, and paleosols are exposed, which can be used to reconstruct Critical Zones (CZ) of the past (paleo-CZs). The paleo-CZ is a holistic concept that reconstructs the entire landscape using geologic records of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, biosphere, and pedosphere (the focus of this study). New paleosol-based mean annual precipitation (MAP) proxies from Karungu, Rusinga Island, and Mfangano Island indicate an average MAP of 750108 mm yr-1 (CALMAG), 800182 mm yr-1 (CIA-K), and 1010228 mm yr-1 (PPM1.0) with no statistical difference throughout the 11 m thick sequence. This corresponds to between 54 and 72% of modern precipitation. Tephras bracketing these paleosols have been correlated across seven sites, and sample a regional paleo-CZ across a 55 km transect along the eastern shoreline of the modern lake. Given the sensitivity of Lake Victoria to precipitation, it is likely that the lake was significantly smaller than modern between 94 ka and 36 ka. This would have removed a major barrier for the movement of fauna (including early modern humans) and provided a dispersal corridor across the equator and between the rifts. It is also consistent with the associated fossil faunal assemblage indicative of semi-arid grasslands. During the Late Pleistocene, the combined geologic and paleontological evidence suggests a

  6. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-06-01

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

  8. Biogeochemical Cycling and Sea Ice Dynamics in the Bering Sea across the Mid-Pleistocene Transition

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

    Today the Bering Sea is characterized by high primary productivity (PP) along the eastern shelf, maintained by CO2 and nutrient rich upwelled deep waters and nutrient release during spring sea ice melting. As such, low oxygen concentrations are pervasive in mid-depth waters. Changes in ventilation and export productivity in the past have been shown to impact this oxygen minimum zone. On glacial/interglacial (G/IG) timescales sea ice formation plays a pivotal role on intermediate water ventilation with evidence pointing to the formation of North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW) in the Bering Sea during Pleistocene glacial intervals. In addition, sea ice plays a significant role in both long- and short-term climate change via associated feedback mechanisms. Thus, records of sea ice dynamics and biogeochemical cycling in the Bering Sea are necessary to fully understand the interaction between PP, circulation patterns, and past G/IG climates with potential implications for the North Pacific carbon cycle. Here we use a multi-proxy approach to study sea ice dynamics and bottom water oxygenation, across three intervals prior to, across, and after the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT, 1.2-0.7 Ma) from International Ocean Discovery Program Site U1343. The MPT, most likely driven by internal climate mechanisms, is ideal to study changes in sea ice dynamics and sedimentary redox conditions on orbital timescales and to investigate the implications for associated feedback mechanisms. The sea ice record, based on various biomarkers, including IP25, shows substantial increase in sea ice extent across the MPT and the occurrence of a late-glacial/deglacial sea ice spike, with consequences for glacial NPIW formation and land glacier retreat via the temperature-precipitation feedback. U/Mn of foraminiferal authigenic coatings, a novel proxy for bottom water oxygenation, also shows distinct variability on G/IG timescales across the MPT, most likely a result of PP and water mass

  9. Geology and Volcanology of Kima'Kho Mountain, Northern British Columbia: A Pleistocene Glaciovolcanic Edifice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnbull, M.; Porritt, L. A.; Edwards, B. R.; Russell, K.

    2014-12-01

    Kima'Kho Mountain is a 1.8 Ma (40Ar/39Ar of 1.82 +/- 40 ka) Pleistocene an alkali-olivine basaltic tuya situated in northern British Columbia. The volcanic edifice rises 460 m from its base and comprises a central vent, dominated by lapilli-tuff and minor pillow lava and dykes; and a surrounding plateau underlain by a sequence of dipping beds of basaltic tuff-breccia and capped by a series of flat-lying, subaerial lava flows. We present a 1:10,000 geological map for Kima'Kho Mountain building on the preliminary work of Ryane et al. (2010). We use the volcanic stratigraphy to explore the implications of three unique features. (1) The central cone comprises massive to crudely-bedded lapilli tuffs containing abundant armoured lapilli - cores of highly-vesicular pyroclasts coated with blocky to cuspate vitric ash. These units suggest an explosive origin from within an ice-enclosed lake, and deposited by wet, dilute pyroclastic surge events. (2) The entire stratigraphic sequence hosts at least two "passage zones" (cf. Jones, 1969); the presence and geometry of these passage zones constrain ice thicknersses at the time of eruption and inform on the englacial lake dynamics. (3) Lastly, our field-based stratigraphic relationships are at odds with the classic tuya model (i.e. an effusive onset to the eruption, forming pillow basalts, followed by explosive activity). Our field mapping suggests an alternative model of tuya architecture, involving a highly-energetic, sustained explosive onset creating a tephra cone that become emergent followed by effusive eruption to create lavas and a subaqueous lava-fed delta. Jones, J. G. Intraglacial volcanoes of the Laugarvatn region, south-west Iceland-I. Geological Society of London Quarterly Journal 124, 197-211 (1969). Ryane, C., Edwards, B. R. & Russell, J. K. The volcanic stratigraphy of Kima'Kho Mountain: A Pleistocene tuya, northwestern British Columbia. Geological Survey of Canada, Current Research 2011-104, 12p, doi:10

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-04-01

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

  11. 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

  12. Late Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinction Consistent With YDB Impact Hypothesis at Younger Dryas Onset

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennett, J. P.; Kennett, D. J.

    2008-12-01

    At least 35 mammal and 19 bird genera became extinct across North America near the end of the Pleistocene. Modern increases in stratigraphic and dating resolution suggest that this extinction occurred relatively rapidly near 12.9 ka (11 radiocarbon kyrs). Within the context of a long-standing debate about its cause, Firestone et al., (2007) proposed that this extinction resulted from an extraterrestrial (ET) impact over North America at 12.9 ka. This hypothesis predicts that the extinction of most of these animals should have occurred abruptly at 12.9 ka. To test this hypothesis, we have critically examined radiocarbon ages and the extinction stratigraphy of these taxa. From a large data pool, we selected only radiocarbon dates with low error margins with a preference for directly dated biological materials (e.g., bone, dung, etc.) and modern chemical purification techniques. A relatively small number of acceptable dates indicate that at least 16 animal genera and several other species became extinct close to 12.9 ka. These taxa include the most common animals of the late Pleistocene such as horses, camels, and mammoths. Also, the remains of extinct taxa are reportedly found up to, but not above, the base of a widely distributed carbon-rich layer called the black mat. This stratum forms an abrupt, major biostratigraphic boundary at the Younger Dryas onset (12.9 ka), which also contains multiple ET markers comprising the impact layer (the YDB). Surviving animal populations were abruptly reduced at the YDB (e.g., Bison), with major range restrictions and apparent evolutionary bottlenecks. The abruptness of this major extinction is inconsistent with the hypotheses of human overkill and climatic change. We argue that extinction ages older than 12.9 ka for many less common species result from the Signor-Lipps effect, but the impact hypothesis predicts that as new dates are acquired, they will approach ever closer to 12.9 ka. The megafaunal extinction is strongly

  13. Reconstruction of Late Pleistocene Paleoenvironments Using Bulk Geochemistry of Paleosols from the Lake Victoria Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily J. Beverly

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The impact of changing environments on the evolution and dispersal of Homo sapiens is highly debated, but few data are available from equatorial Africa. Lake Victoria is the largest freshwater lake in the tropics and is currently a biogeographic barrier between the eastern and western branches of the East African Rift. The lake has previously desiccated at ~17 ka and again at ~15 ka, but little is known from this region prior to the Last Glacial Maximum. The Pleistocene terrestrial deposits on the northeast coast of Lake Victoria (94–36 ka are ideal for paleoenvironmental reconstructions where volcaniclastic deposits (tuffs, fluvial deposits, tufa, and paleosols are exposed, which can be used to reconstruct Critical Zones (CZ of the past (paleo-CZs. The paleo-CZ is a holistic concept that reconstructs the entire landscape using geologic records of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, biosphere, and pedosphere (the focus of this study. New paleosol-based mean annual precipitation (MAP proxies from Karungu, Rusinga Island, and Mfangano Island indicate an average MAP of 750 ± 108 mm year−1 (CALMAG, 800 ± 182 mm year−1 (CIA-K, and 1,010 ± 228 mm year−1 (PPM1.0 with no statistical difference throughout the 11 m thick sequence. This corresponds to between 54 and 72% of modern precipitation. Tephras bracketing these paleosols have been correlated across seven sites, and sample a regional paleo-CZ across a ~55 km transect along the eastern shoreline of the modern lake. Given the sensitivity of Lake Victoria to precipitation, it is likely that the lake was significantly smaller than modern between 94 and 36 ka. This would have removed a major barrier for the movement of fauna (including early modern humans and provided a dispersal corridor across the equator and between the rifts. It is also consistent with the associated fossil faunal assemblage indicative of semi-arid grasslands. During the Late Pleistocene, the combined geologic and

  14. Pleistocene glacial cycle effects on the phylogeography of the Chinese endemic bat species, Myotis davidii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiang Tinglei

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Global climatic oscillations, glaciation cycles and the unique geographic topology of China have profoundly influenced species population distributions. In most species, contemporary distributions of populations cannot be fully understood, except in a historical context. Complex patterns of Pleistocene glaciations, as well as other physiographic changes have influenced the distribution of bat species in China. Until this study, there had been no phylogeographical research on Myotis davidii, an endemic Chinese bat. We used a combination of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA markers to investigate genetic diversity, population structure, and the demographic history of M. davidii. In particular, we compared patterns of genetic variation to glacial oscillations, topography, and environmental variation during the Pleistocene in an effort to explain current distributions in light of these historical processes. Results M. davidii comprises three lineages (MEP, SWP and SH based on the results of molecular variance analysis (AMOVA and phylogenetic analyses. The results of a STRUCTURE analysis reveal multi-hierarchical population structure in M. davidii. Nuclear and mitochondrial genetic markers reveal different levels of gene flow among populations. In the case of mtDNA, populations adhere to an isolation-by-distance model, whereas the individual assignment test reveals considerable gene flow between populations. MDIV analysis indicate that the split of the MEP and SWP/SH lineages, and from the SWP and SH lineages were at 201 ka BP and 158 ka BP, respectively. The results of a mismatch distribution analysis and neutrality tests indicate a population expansion event at 79.17 ka BP and 69.12 ka BP in MEP and SWP, respectively. Conclusions The complex demographic history, discontinuous extant distribution of haplotypes, and multiple-hierarchy population structure of M. davidii appear associated with climatic oscillations, topography and eco

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  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. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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 ...

  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. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. L’univers des anciens prisonniers politiques en Syrie

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yassin al-Haj Saleh

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Les prisonniers politiques furent très nombreux en Syrie des années 1970 jusqu’à leur libération progressive de 1991 à 2005. Si leur conditions de vie en prison, les interrogatoires et la torture sont parfois abordés par les ex-prisonniers, leur existence après la prison ne semble susciter aucun intérêt. Cet article se propose de commencer à combler cette lacune, en analysant les facteurs qui pèsent sur la vie post-carcérale. Les conditions et la durée d’incarcération, le milieu social et affectif trouvé à la sortie, les réseaux de relation, la chance de trouver un travail et des moyens de subsistance sont autant d’éléments qui créent des conditions plus ou moins favorables à la réinsertion. Les ex-prisonniers politiques rencontrent quoi qu’il en soit d’énormes difficultés, y compris à gérer leur propre image. Des initiatives commencent à se faire jour pour tenter d’obtenir la réhabilitation et des dédommagements pour ces individus injustement brisés.

  9. L’univers des anciens prisonniers politiques en Syrie

    OpenAIRE

    Yassin al-Haj Saleh

    2012-01-01

    Les prisonniers politiques furent très nombreux en Syrie des années 1970 jusqu’à leur libération progressive de 1991 à 2005. Si leur conditions de vie en prison, les interrogatoires et la torture sont parfois abordés par les ex-prisonniers, leur existence après la prison ne semble susciter aucun intérêt. Cet article se propose de commencer à combler cette lacune, en analysant les facteurs qui pèsent sur la vie post-carcérale. Les conditions et la durée d’incarcération, le milieu social et aff...

  10. Recherche de polluants inorganiques sur un ancien site de ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    que, l'actuelle aire de jeux renferme des éléments traces métalliques (ETM) tels que le plomb, le cadmium, l'arsenic, le mercure, de même que les nitrates et les ... En marge des approches de dépollution chimiques proposées, il est aussi possible de garnir le site en gazon afin de réduire les risques de contamination.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  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. 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.

  17. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene glacial events in the Colonia valley, Northern Patagonia Icefield, southern Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nimick, David A.; Mcgrath, Daniel; Mahan, Shannon; Friesen, Beverly A.; Leidich, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    The Northern Patagonia Icefield (NPI) is the primary glaciated terrain worldwide at its latitude (46.5–47.5°S), and constraining its glacial history provides unique information for reconstructing Southern Hemisphere paleoclimate. The Colonia Glacier is the largest outlet glacier draining the eastern NPI. Ages were determined using dendrochronology, lichenometry, radiocarbon, cosmogenic 10Be and optically stimulated luminescence. Dated moraines in the Colonia valley defined advances at 13.2 ± 0.95, 11.0 ± 0.47 and 4.96 ± 0.21 ka, with the last being the first constraint on the onset of Neoglaciation for the eastern NPI from a directly dated landform. Dating in the tributary Cachet valley, which contains an ice-dammed lake during periods of Colonia Glacier expansion, defined an advance at ca. 2.95 ± 0.21 ka, periods of advancement at 810 ± 49 cal a BP and 245 ± 13 cal a BP, and retreat during the intervening periods. Recent Colonia Glacier thinning, which began in the late 1800s, opened a lower-elevation outlet channel for Lago Cachet Dos in ca. 1960. Our data provide the most comprehensive set of Latest Pleistocene and Holocene ages for a single NPI outlet glacier and expand previously developed NPI glacial chronologies.

  18. Impact of global SST gradients on the Mediterranean runoff changes across the Plio-Pleistocene transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colleoni, Florence; Cherchi, Annalisa; Masina, Simona; Brierley, Christopher M.

    2015-06-01

    This work explores the impact of the development of global meridional and zonal sea surface temperature (SST) gradients on the Mediterranean runoff variability during the Plio-Pleistocene transition, about 3 Ma. Results show that total annual mean Pliocene Mediterranean runoff is about 40% larger than during the preindustrial period due to more increased extratropical specific humidity. As a consequence of a weakened and extended Hadley cell, the Pliocene northwest Africa hydrological network produces a discharge 30 times larger than today. Our results support the conclusion that during the Pliocene, the Mediterranean water deficit was reduced relative to today due to a larger river discharge. By means of a stand-alone atmospheric general circulation model, we simulate the separate impact of extratropical and equatorial SST cooling on the Mediterranean runoff. While cooling the equatorial SST does not imply significant changes to the Pliocene Mediterranean hydrological budget, the extratropical SST cooling increases the water deficit due to a decrease in precipitation and runoff. Consequently, river discharge from this area reduces to preindustrial levels. The main teleconnections acting upon the Mediterranean area today, i.e., the North Atlantic Oscillation during winter and the "monsoon-desert" mechanism during summer already have a large influence on the climate of our Pliocene simulations. Finally, our results also suggest that in a climate state significantly warmer than today, changes of the Hadley circulation could potentially lead to increased water resources in northwest Africa.

  19. The Pleistocene archaeology and environments of the Wasiriya Beds, Rusinga Island, Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tryon, Christian A; Tyler Faith, J; Peppe, Daniel J; Fox, David L; McNulty, Kieran P; Jenkins, Kirsten; Dunsworth, Holly; Harcourt-Smith, Will

    2010-12-01

    Western Kenya is well known for abundant early Miocene hominoid fossils. However, the Wasiriya Beds of Rusinga Island, Kenya, preserve a Pleistocene sedimentary archive with radiocarbon age estimates of >33-45 ka that contains Middle Stone Age artifacts and abundant, well-preserved fossil fauna: a co-occurrence rare in eastern Africa, particularly in the region bounding Lake Victoria. Artifacts and fossils are associated with distal volcanic ash deposits that occur at multiple localities in the Wasiriya Beds, correlated on the basis of geochemical composition as determined by electron probe microanalysis. Sediment lithology and the fossil ungulates suggest a local fluvial system and associated riparian wooded habitat within a predominantly arid grassland setting that differs substantially from the modern environment, where local climate is strongly affected by moisture availability from Lake Victoria. In particular, the presence of oryx (Oryx gazella) and Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi) suggest a pre-Last Glacial Maximum expansion of arid grasslands, an environmental reconstruction further supported by the presence of several extinct specialized grazers (Pelorovis antiquus, Megalotragus sp., and a small alcelaphine) that are unknown from Holocene deposits in eastern Africa. The combination of artifacts, a rich fossil fauna, and volcaniclastic sediments makes the Wasiriya Beds a key site for examining the Lake Victoria basin, a biogeographically important area for understanding the diversification and dispersal of Homo sapiens from Africa, whose pre-Last Glacial Maximum history remains poorly understood. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-08-30

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

  1. Reconstruction of a semi-arid late Pleistocene paleocatena from the Lake Victoria region, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beverly, Emily J.; Driese, Steven G.; Peppe, Daniel J.; Arellano, L. Nicole; Blegen, Nick; Faith, J. Tyler; Tryon, Christian A.

    2015-11-01

    The effect of changing environment on the evolution of Homo sapiens is heavily debated, but few data are available from equatorial Africa prior to the last glacial maximum. The Karungu deposits on the northeast coast of Lake Victoria are ideal for paleoenvironmental reconstructions and are best studied at the Kisaaka site near Karunga in Kenya (94 to > 33 ka) where paleosols, fluvial deposits, tufa, and volcaniclastic deposits (tuffs) are exposed over a 2 km transect. Three well-exposed and laterally continuous paleosols with intercalated tuffs allow for reconstruction of a succession of paleocatenas. The oldest paleosol is a smectitic paleo-Vertisol with saline and sodic properties. Higher in the section, the paleosols are tuffaceous paleo-Inceptisols with Alfisol-like soil characteristics (illuviated clay). Mean annual precipitation (MAP) proxies indicate little change through time, with an average of 764 ± 108 mm yr- 1 for Vertisols (CALMAG) and 813 ± 182 to 963 ± 182 mm yr- 1 for all paleosols (CIA-K). Field observations and MAP proxies suggest that Karungu was significantly drier than today, consistent with the associated faunal assemblage, and likely resulted in a significantly smaller Lake Victoria during the late Pleistocene. Rainfall reduction and associated grassland expansion may have facilitated human and faunal dispersals across equatorial East Africa.

  2. Pliocene and pleistocene hominid-bearing sites from west of lake turkana, kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, J M; Brown, F H; Leakey, M G; Walker, A C; Leakey, R E

    1988-01-01

    Pliocene and Pleistocene fossil localities near the western shoreline of Lake Turkana, ranging in age between 1 million and 3.5 million years in age, have produced important new hominid specimens including most of a Homo erectus skeleton and a relatively complete early robust australopithecine cranium. The lacustrine, fluviatile, and terrestrial strata are designated the Nachukui Formation, which is subdivided into eight members. The distribution of sedimentary facies within the Nachukui Formation suggests that, as today, the Labur and Murua Rith ranges formed the western margin of the basin and were drained by eastward-flowing rivers that fed into the forerunner of the present lake or a major river system. There is also stratigraphic evidence for tectonic movement during the deposition of these sediments. Twenty-three of the tuffs observed in the succession occur also in the Koobi Fora Formation east of the lake and in the Shungura Formation of the lower Omo Valley and permit precise correlation among these three localities. Fortyseven fossiliferous sites from West Turkana have yielded more than 1000 specimens of 93 mammalian species. The mammalian fossils represent nine sequential assemblages that augment information about faunal and environmental change from elsewhere in the basin.

  3. Stratigraphy of the Koobi Fora Formation (Pliocene and Pleistocene) in the Ileret region of northern Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gathogo, Patrick N.; Brown, Francis H.

    2006-08-01

    Exposures of Pliocene and Pleistocene deposits in the Ileret region include all eight members of the Koobi Fora Formation and represent at least 533 m of section from the base of the Lonyumun Member to the top of the Chari Mb. This thickness is more than twice that reported by earlier workers (˜260 m) and compares well with the composite section of the Koobi Fora Formation (525 m). Thus the Ileret region provides a very complete and representative outcrop of the Koobi Fora Formation. As Koobi Fora Formation member boundaries are placed at the base of specified tuffs, not all member boundaries can be recognized in the Ileret region. For this reason, the stratigraphy is described in terms of the following members (thicknesses in parentheses): Lonyumun (110 m), undifferentiated Moiti and Lokochot (104 m), Tulu Bor (54 m), Burgi (55 m), KBS (74 m), Okote (45 m), and Chari (93 m). Moreover, the boundary between the Okote Member and the KBS Member in the Ileret region is placed at a prominent caliche which must closely approximate the age of the Okote Tuff in its type section.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-06-22

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

  5. A middle Pleistocene through middle Miocene moraine sequence in the central Transantarctic Mountains, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balter, A.; Bromley, G. R.; Balco, G.; Thomas, H.; Jackson, M. S.

    2017-12-01

    Ice-free areas at high elevation in the central Transantarctic Mountains preserve extensive moraine sequences and drift deposits that comprise a geologic record of former East Antarctic Ice Sheet thickness and extent. We are applying cosmogenic-nuclide exposure dating to determine the ages of these moraine sequences at Roberts Massif and Otway Massif, at the heads of the Shackleton and Beardmore Glaciers, respectively. Moraines at these sites are for the most part openwork boulder belts characteristic of deposition by cold-based ice, which is consistent with present climate and glaciological conditions. To develop our chronology, we collected samples from 30 distinct ice-marginal landforms and have so far measured >100 3He, 10Be, and 21Ne exposure ages. Apparent exposure ages range from 1-14 Ma, which shows that these landforms record glacial events between the middle Pleistocene and middle Miocene. These data show that the thickness of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet in this region was similar to or thicker than present for long periods between the middle Miocene and today. The time range represented by these moraine sequences indicates that they may also provide direct geologic evidence for East Antarctic Ice Sheet behavior during past periods of warmer-than-present climate, specifically the Miocene and Pliocene. As the East Antarctic Ice Sheet is the largest ice sheet on earth, understanding its sensitivity to warm-climate conditions is critical for projections of ice sheet behavior and sea-level rise in future warm climates.

  6. A warm thermal enclave in the late Pleistocene of the south-eastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, Dale A; Rich, Fredrick J; Schneider, Vincent; Lynch-Stieglitz, Jean

    2009-05-01

    Physical and biological evidence supports the probable existence of an enclave of relatively warm climate located between the Southern Appalachian Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean in the United States during the Last Glacial Maximum. The region supported a mosaic of forest and prairie habitats inhabited by a "Floridian" ice-age biota. Plant and vertebrate remains suggest an ecological gradient towards Cape Hatteras (35 degreesN) wherein forests tended to replace prairies, and browsing proboscideans tended to replace grazing proboscideans. Beyond 35 degreesN, warm waters of the Gulf Stream were deflected towards the central Atlantic, and a cold-facies biota replaced "Floridian" biota on the Atlantic coastal plain. Because of niche diversity and relatively benign climate, biodiversity may have been greater in the south-eastern thermal enclave than in other unglaciated areas of North America. However, the impact of terminal Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions may also have been shorter and more severe in the enclave than further north. A comparison with biotic changes that occurred in North America approximately 55 million years (ma) ago at the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum suggests that similar processes of change took place under both ice-house and greenhouse climates.

  7. 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.

  8. The timing of Late Pleistocene glaciation at Mount Wilhelm, Papua New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Stephanie; Barrows, Timothy; Hope, Geoff; Pillans, Brad; Fifield, Keith

    2016-04-01

    The highlands of New Guinea were the most extensively glaciated area in the Asian tropical region during the Late Pleistocene. Evidence for glaciation is widespread on most of the mountain peaks above ~3500 m. Glacial landforms include both valley and ice cap forms, but the timing of glaciation remains constrained to only a few local areas. This paper focuses on Mount Wilhelm, which is situated in the central southern region of Papua New Guinea at 5.78°S and is the highest peak (4510 m a.s.l.) We focus on a south easterly valley (Pindaunde Valley) emanating from the peak, where large moraines indicate the maximum ice extent of a valley glacier ~5 km long. Within this extensive moraine complex, recessional moraines document the retreat of the glacier towards the summit region. In order to determine the timing of deglaciation, we collected samples for surface exposure dating using 36Cl and 10Be from diorite boulders positioned on moraine crests. The ages indicate that maximum ice extent was attained during the last glacial maximum (LGM) and that ice remained near its maximum extent until after 15 ka but persisted at higher elevations almost until the Holocene. These results are similar to those described from Mt Giluwe to the northwest of Mount Wilhelm, where an ice cap reached its maximum extent at the LGM and remained there for around 3-4,000 years. This indicates that full glacial conditions were only brief in this region of the tropics.

  9. 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.

  10. Hominin skeletal part abundances and claims of deliberate disposal of corpses in the Middle Pleistocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egeland, Charles P; Domínguez-Rodrigo, Manuel; Pickering, Travis Rayne; Menter, Colin G; Heaton, Jason L

    2018-05-01

    Humans are set apart from other organisms by the realization of their own mortality. Thus, determining the prehistoric emergence of this capacity is of significant interest to understanding the uniqueness of the human animal. Tracing that capacity chronologically is possible through archaeological investigations that focus on physical markers that reflect "mortality salience." Among these markers is the deliberate and culturally mediated disposal of corpses. Some Neandertal bone assemblages are among the earliest reasonable claims for the deliberate disposal of hominins, but even these are vigorously debated. More dramatic assertions center on the Middle Pleistocene sites of Sima de los Huesos (SH, Spain) and the Dinaledi Chamber (DC, South Africa), where the remains of multiple hominin individuals were found in deep caves, and under reported taphonomic circumstances that seem to discount the possibility that nonhominin actors and processes contributed to their formation. These claims, with significant implications for charting the evolution of the "human condition," deserve scrutiny. We test these assertions through machine-learning analyses of hominin skeletal part representation in the SH and DC assemblages. Our results indicate that nonanthropogenic agents and abiotic processes cannot yet be ruled out as significant contributors to the ultimate condition of both collections. This finding does not falsify hypotheses of deliberate disposal for the SH and DC corpses, but does indicate that the data also support partially or completely nonanthropogenic formational histories.

  11. Auditory capacities in Middle Pleistocene humans from the Sierra de Atapuerca in Spain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, I; Rosa, M; Arsuaga, J-L; Jarabo, P; Quam, R; Lorenzo, C; Gracia, A; Carretero, J-M; Bermúdez de Castro, J-M; Carbonell, E

    2004-07-06

    Human hearing differs from that of chimpanzees and most other anthropoids in maintaining a relatively high sensitivity from 2 kHz up to 4 kHz, a region that contains relevant acoustic information in spoken language. Knowledge of the auditory capacities in human fossil ancestors could greatly enhance the understanding of when this human pattern emerged during the course of our evolutionary history. Here we use a comprehensive physical model to analyze the influence of skeletal structures on the acoustic filtering of the outer and middle ears in five fossil human specimens from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos in the Sierra de Atapuerca of Spain. Our results show that the skeletal anatomy in these hominids is compatible with a human-like pattern of sound power transmission through the outer and middle ear at frequencies up to 5 kHz, suggesting that they already had auditory capacities similar to those of living humans in this frequency range.

  12. Enamel hypoplasias and physiological stress in the Sima de los Huesos Middle Pleistocene hominins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, E; Rozzi, F Ramirez; Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Martinón-Torres, M; Wasterlain, S N; Sarmiento, S

    2004-11-01

    This study presents an analysis of linear enamel hypoplasias (LEH) and plane-form defects (PFD) in the hominine dental sample from the Sima de los Huesos (SH) Middle Pleistocene site in Atapuerca (Spain). The SH sample comprises 475 teeth, 467 permanent and 8 deciduous, belonging to a minimum of 28 individuals. The method for recording PFD and LEH is discussed, as well as the definition of LEH. The prevalence of LEH and PFD in SH permanent dentition (unilateral total count) is 4.6% (13/280). Only one deciduous tooth (lower dc) showed an enamel disruption. Prevalence by individual ranges from 18.7-30%. The most likely explanation for the relatively low LEH and PFD prevalence in the SH sample suggests that the SH population exhibited a low level of developmental stress. The age at occurrence of LEH and PFD was determined by counting the number of perikymata between each lesion and the cervix of the tooth. Assuming a periodicity of nine days for the incremental lines, the majority of LEH in the SH sample occurred during the third year of life and may be related to the metabolic stress associated with weaning.

  13. Late Pleistocene songbirds of Liang Bua (Flores, Indonesia); the first fossil passerine fauna described from Wallacea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutikna, Thomas; Saptomo, Wahyu; Jatmiko; Wasisto, Sri; Tocheri, Matthew W.; Mayr, Gerald

    2017-01-01

    Background Passerines (Aves: Passeriformes) dominate modern terrestrial bird communities yet their fossil record is limited. Liang Bua is a large cave on the Indonesian island of Flores that preserves Late Pleistocene–Holocene deposits (∼190 ka to present day). Birds are the most diverse faunal group at Liang Bua and are present throughout the stratigraphic sequence. Methods We examined avian remains from the Late Pleistocene deposits of Sector XII, a 2 × 2 m area excavated to about 8.5 m depth. Although postcranial passerine remains are typically challenging to identify, we found several humeral characters particularly useful in discriminating between groups, and identified 89 skeletal elements of passerines. Results At least eight species from eight families are represented, including the Large-billed Crow (Corvus cf. macrorhynchos), the Australasian Bushlark (Mirafra javanica), a friarbird (Philemon sp.), and the Pechora Pipit (Anthus cf. gustavi). Discussion These remains constitute the first sample of fossil passerines described in Wallacea. Two of the taxa no longer occur on Flores today; a large sturnid (cf. Acridotheres) and a grassbird (Megalurus sp.). Palaeoecologically, the songbird assemblage suggests open grassland and tall forests, which is consistent with conditions inferred from the non-passerine fauna at the site. Corvus cf. macrorhynchos, found in the Homo floresiensis-bearing layers, was likely part of a scavenging guild that fed on carcasses of Stegodon florensis insularis alongside vultures (Trigonoceps sp.), giant storks (Leptoptilos robustus), komodo dragons (Varanus komodoensis), and probably H. floresiensis as well. PMID:28828271

  14. Optically stimulated luminescence age controls on late Pleistocene and Holocene coastal lithosomes, North Carolina, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallinson, D.; Burdette, K.; Mahan, S.; Brook, G.

    2008-01-01

    Luminescence ages from a variety of coastal features on the North Carolina Coastal Plain provide age control for shoreline formation and relative sea-level position during the late Pleistocene. A series of paleoshoreline ridges, dating to Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5a and MIS 3 have been defined. The Kitty Hawk beach ridges, on the modern Outer Banks, yield ages of 3 to 2??ka. Oxygen-isotope data are used to place these deposits in the context of global climate and sea-level change. The occurrence of MIS 5a and MIS 3 shorelines suggests that glacio-isostatic adjustment (GIA) of the study area is large (ca. 22 to 26??m), as suggested and modeled by other workers, and/or MIS 3 sea level was briefly higher than suggested by some coral reef studies. Correcting the shoreline elevations for GIA brings their elevation in line with other sea-level indicators. The age of the Kitty Hawk beach ridges places the Holocene shoreline well west of its present location at ca. 3 to 2??ka. The age of shoreline progradation is consistent with the ages of other beach ridge complexes in the southeast USA, suggesting some regionally contemporaneous forcing mechanism. ?? 2007 University of Washington.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lebreiro, S. M.

    2013-06-01

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

  16. Miocene and Pleistocene mollusks from San Andres Island (Caribbean Sea, Colombia) and Paleogeographic considerations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diaz M, Juan Manuel; Garcia Llano, Cesar Fernando

    2010-01-01

    San Andres Island is the largest emerged portion of the oceanic archipelago of San Andres and Providencia, southwestern Caribbean Sea; it originated as a coralline atoll during Miocene times. The central and highest part of the island consists of a calcareous crest, the San Andres Formation, formed by Neogene lagoonal and reefal deposits. This crest is surrounded by a calcareous platform of Pleistocene age (San Luis Formation) which emerges only along the island coast, whereas its most part is submerged and covered by a Recent reef complex. Fossil material of molluscs from these two formations was collected in various sites throughout the island and taxonomically identified. In the four sites sampled in the San Andres Formation, material belonging to 19 gastropod and 37 bivalve species was obtained, most of them relatively well represented in other geologic formations of the Caribbean region that are stratigraphically situated between the upper Miocene and the middle Pliocene. Some elements occurring in this formation, such as Ostrea haitiensis, Meretrix dariena and Siphocypraea henekeni, were widely distributed in the Caribbean Miocene Province. In the San Luis Formation, material belonging to 18 gastropod and 11 bivalve species was obtained, most of them also represented in the Recent molluscan fauna of the region. The estimated age of this formation is Sangamonian, hence corresponding to similar formations occurring in Grand Cayman, Jamaica, Hispaniola, the Netherlands Antilles and other Caribbean islands, with which it also shows a great similarity in the composition of the molluscan fauna.

  17. Late Pleistocene songbirds of Liang Bua (Flores, Indonesia; the first fossil passerine fauna described from Wallacea

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    Hanneke J.M. Meijer

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Background Passerines (Aves: Passeriformes dominate modern terrestrial bird communities yet their fossil record is limited. Liang Bua is a large cave on the Indonesian island of Flores that preserves Late Pleistocene–Holocene deposits (∼190 ka to present day. Birds are the most diverse faunal group at Liang Bua and are present throughout the stratigraphic sequence. Methods We examined avian remains from the Late Pleistocene deposits of Sector XII, a 2 × 2 m area excavated to about 8.5 m depth. Although postcranial passerine remains are typically challenging to identify, we found several humeral characters particularly useful in discriminating between groups, and identified 89 skeletal elements of passerines. Results At least eight species from eight families are represented, including the Large-billed Crow (Corvus cf. macrorhynchos, the Australasian Bushlark (Mirafra javanica, a friarbird (Philemon sp., and the Pechora Pipit (Anthus cf. gustavi. Discussion These remains constitute the first sample of fossil passerines described in Wallacea. Two of the taxa no longer occur on Flores today; a large sturnid (cf. Acridotheres and a grassbird (Megalurus sp.. Palaeoecologically, the songbird assemblage suggests open grassland and tall forests, which is consistent with conditions inferred from the non-passerine fauna at the site. Corvus cf. macrorhynchos, found in the Homo floresiensis-bearing layers, was likely part of a scavenging guild that fed on carcasses of Stegodon florensis insularis alongside vultures (Trigonoceps sp., giant storks (Leptoptilos robustus, komodo dragons (Varanus komodoensis, and probably H. floresiensis as well.

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

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

    2017-01-01

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

  19. Unexpected Convergent Evolution of Nasal Domes between Pleistocene Bovids and Cretaceous Hadrosaur Dinosaurs.

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    O'Brien, Haley D; Faith, J Tyler; Jenkins, Kirsten E; Peppe, Daniel J; Plummer, Thomas W; Jacobs, Zenobia L; Li, Bo; Joannes-Boyau, Renaud; Price, Gilbert; Feng, Yue-Xing; Tryon, Christian A

    2016-02-22

    The fossil record provides tangible, historical evidence for the mode and operation of evolution across deep time. Striking patterns of convergence are some of the strongest examples of these operations, whereby, over time, similar environmental and/or behavioral pressures precipitate similarity in form and function between disparately related taxa. Here we present fossil evidence for an unexpected convergence between gregarious plant-eating mammals and dinosaurs. Recent excavations of Late Pleistocene deposits on Rusinga Island, Kenya, have uncovered a catastrophic assemblage of the wildebeest-like bovid Rusingoryx atopocranion. Previously known from fragmentary material, these new specimens reveal large, hollow, osseous nasal crests: a craniofacial novelty for mammals that is remarkably comparable to the nasal crests of lambeosaurine hadrosaur dinosaurs. Using adult and juvenile material from this assemblage, as well as computed tomographic imaging, we investigate this convergence from morphological, developmental, functional, and paleoenvironmental perspectives. Our detailed analyses reveal broad parallels between R. atopocranion and basal Lambeosaurinae, suggesting that osseous nasal crests may require a highly specific combination of ontogeny, evolution, and environmental pressures in order to develop. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

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    Carnaval, Ana Carolina; Bates, John M

    2007-12-01

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

  1. Causes of ice age intensification across the Mid-Pleistocene Transition

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    Chalk, Thomas B.; Hain, Mathis P.; Foster, Gavin L.; Rohling, Eelco J.; Sexton, Philip F.; Badger, Marcus P. S.; Cherry, Soraya G.; Hasenfratz, Adam P.; Haug, Gerald H.; Jaccard, Samuel L.; Martínez-García, Alfredo; Pälike, Heiko; Pancost, Richard D.; Wilson, Paul A.

    2017-12-01

    During the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT; 1,200–800 kya), Earth's orbitally paced ice age cycles intensified, lengthened from ˜40,000 (˜40 ky) to ˜100 ky, and became distinctly asymmetrical. Testing hypotheses that implicate changing atmospheric CO2 levels as a driver of the MPT has proven difficult with available observations. Here, we use orbitally resolved, boron isotope CO2 data to show that the glacial to interglacial CO2 difference increased from ˜43 to ˜75 μatm across the MPT, mainly because of lower glacial CO2 levels. Through carbon cycle modeling, we attribute this decline primarily to the initiation of substantive dust-borne iron fertilization of the Southern Ocean during peak glacial stages. We also observe a twofold steepening of the relationship between sea level and CO2-related climate forcing that is suggestive of a change in the dynamics that govern ice sheet stability, such as that expected from the removal of subglacial regolith or interhemispheric ice sheet phase-locking. We argue that neither ice sheet dynamics nor CO2 change in isolation can explain the MPT. Instead, we infer that the MPT was initiated by a change in ice sheet dynamics and that longer and deeper post-MPT ice ages were sustained by carbon cycle feedbacks related to dust fertilization of the Southern Ocean as a consequence of larger ice sheets.

  2. Anatomy of biocalcarenitic units in the Plio-Pleistocene record of the Northern Apennines (Italy)

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    Cau, Simone; Roveri, Marco; Taviani, Marco

    2017-04-01

    The Castell'Arquato Basin (CAB) in the foothills of the thrust-belt Northern Apennines is a foreland basin infilled by Plio-Quaternary sediments and a reference area for Plio-Pleistocene biostratigraphy. The CAB exposes plurimetric biodetrital carbonate units at discrete temporal intervals. Such shell-rich units are at places lithified, turning into conspicuous biodetritral carbonate rocks (biocalcarenites) that display a cyclical stacking motif highlighted by the regular alternation with finer-grained marine deposits. The cyclical nature of thick biocalcarenites has been hypothesized to be orbitally-controlled by obliquity and/or precession cyclicity. Furthermore, biocalcarenite-mudstone couplets form distinct clusters governed by 100-400 ka eccentricity maxima starting from 3.1 Ma at the inception of the Northern Hemisphere glaciation. They correlate with sapropels cycles formed at times of maximum insolation (precession minima). The CAB calcarenites are poorly known with respect to their environmental genetic context what motivated a detailed paleoecological analysis to unravel at best their formative context. Five distinct biofacies arranged in stacking patterns are identified through two-way cluster analysis based on the macrofossil content. Our quantitative and qualitative results suggest that these polytaxic shell concentrations and their bracketing marine mudstones developed in middle shelf settings being sensitive to climatically-driven changes.

  3. Late to middle Pleistocene Arctic glacial history implied from a sedimentary record from the Northwind Ridge

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    Liu, Y.; Dong, L.; Shi, X.; Zhu, A.

    2017-12-01

    Abstract: Sediment core ARC6-C21 collected from the Northwind Ridge, western Arctic Ocean, covers the late to middle Quaternary (Marine Isotope Stages (MIS) 1-11), as estimated by correlation to earlier proposed Arctic Ocean stratigraphies and AMS14C dating of the youngest sediments. Detailed examination of the elemental composition of sediment along with grain size in core ARC6-C21 provides important new information about sedimentary environments and provenance. We use increased contents of coarse debris as an indicator of glacier collapse events at the margins of the western Arctic Ocean, and identify the provenance of these events from geochemical composition. Notably, peaks of MgO and CaO, including large dropstones, presumably track the Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS) discharge events to the Arctic Ocean. Major LIS inputs occurred during the stratigraphic intervals estimated as MIS 3, intra-MIS 5 and 7 events, MIS 8, and MIS 10. Inputs from the East Siberian Ice Sheet (ESIS) and/or Eurasia Ice Sheet (EIS)are inferred from peaks of SiO2, K2O and Na2O associated with coarse sediment. Major ESIS and/or EIS sedimentary events occurred in the intervals estimated as MIS 2, MIS 4, MIS 6, MIS 8 and MIS 10. Keywords: Sediment core, Pleistocene, western Arctic Ocean, geochemistry, grain size, sediment provenance, glaciations

  4. Quantifying the Eocene to Pleistocene topographic evolution of the southwestern Alps, France and Italy

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    Fauquette, Séverine; Bernet, Matthias; Suc, Jean-Pierre; Grosjean, Anne-Sabine; Guillot, Stéphane; van der Beek, Peter; Jourdan, Sébastien; Popescu, Speranta-Maria; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; Bertini, Adele; Pittet, Bernard; Tricart, Pierre; Dumont, Thierry; Schwartz, Stéphane; Zheng, Zhuo; Roche, Emile; Pavia, Giulio; Gardien, Véronique

    2015-02-01

    We evaluate the topographic evolution of the southwestern Alps using Eocene to Pleistocene pollen data combined with existing sedimentological, petrographic and detrital geo- and thermochronological data. We report 32 new pollen analyses from 10 sites completed by an existing dataset of 83 samples from 14 localities situated across the southwestern Alps, including both the pro- and the retro-foreland basins. The presence of microthermic tree pollen (mainly Abies, Picea) indicates that this part of the mountain belt attained elevations over 1900 m as early as the Oligocene. Inferred rapid surface uplift during the mid-Oligocene coincided with a previously documented brief phase of rapid erosional exhumation, when maximum erosion rates may have reached values of up to 1.5-2 km/Myr. Slower long-term average exhumation rates of ∼0.3 km/Myr since the Late Oligocene helped maintaining the high Alpine topography of the southwestern Alps until today. The relative abundances of meso-microthermic tree pollen (Cathaya, Cedrus and Tsuga) and microthermic tree pollen (Abies, Picea) in the pro- and retro-foreland basin deposits, indicate that the present-day asymmetric topography, with a relatively gentle western flank and steeper eastern flank, was established early in the southwestern Alps, at least since the Early Miocene, and possibly since the Oligocene or Late Eocene. Therefore, the high topography and asymmetric morphology of this part of the Alps has been maintained throughout the past ∼30 Ma.

  5. Independent evolution of baleen whale gigantism linked to Plio-Pleistocene ocean dynamics.

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    Slater, Graham J; Goldbogen, Jeremy A; Pyenson, Nicholas D

    2017-05-31

    Vertebrates have evolved to gigantic sizes repeatedly over the past 250 Myr, reaching their extreme in today's baleen whales (Mysticeti). Hypotheses for the evolution of exceptionally large size in mysticetes range from niche partitioning to predator avoidance, but there has been no quantitative examination of body size evolutionary dynamics in this clade and it remains unclear when, why or how gigantism evolved. By fitting phylogenetic macroevolutionary models to a dataset consisting of living and extinct species, we show that mysticetes underwent a clade-wide shift in their mode of body size evolution during the Plio-Pleistocene. This transition, from Brownian motion-like dynamics to a trended random walk towards larger size, is temporally linked to the onset of seasonally intensified upwelling along coastal ecosystems. High prey densities resulting from wind-driven upwelling, rather than abundant resources alone, are the primary determinant of efficient foraging in extant mysticetes and Late Pliocene changes in ocean dynamics may have provided an ecological pathway to gigantism in multiple independent lineages. © 2017 The Author(s).

  6. Geochemical discrimination of five pleistocene Lava-Dam outburst-flood deposits, western Grand Canyon, Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenton, C.R.; Poreda, R.J.; Nash, B.P.; Webb, R.H.; Cerling, T.E.

    2004-01-01

    Pleistocene basaltic lava dams and outburst-flood deposits in the western Grand Canyon, Arizona, have been correlated by means of cosmogenic 3He (3Hec) ages and concentrations of SiO2, Na2O, K2O, and rare earth elements. These data indicate that basalt clasts and vitroclasts in a given outburst-flood deposit came from a common source, a lava dam. With these data, it is possible to distinguish individual dam-flood events and improve our understanding of the interrelations of volcanism and river processes. At least five lava dams on the Colorado River failed catastrophically between 100 and 525 ka; subsequent outburst floods emplaced basalt-rich deposits preserved on benches as high as 200 m above the current river and up to 53 km downstream of dam sites. Chemical data also distinguishes individual lava flows that were collectively mapped in the past as large long-lasting dam complexes. These chemical data, in combination with age constraints, increase our ability to correlate lava dams and outburst-flood deposits and increase our understanding of the longevity of lava dams. Bases of correlated lava dams and flood deposits approximate the elevation of the ancestral river during each flood event. Water surface profiles are reconstructed and can be used in future hydraulic models to estimate the magnitude of these large-scale floods.

  7. A new horned crocodile from the Plio-Pleistocene hominid sites at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania.

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    Christopher A Brochu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The fossil record reveals surprising crocodile diversity in the Neogene of Africa, but relationships with their living relatives and the biogeographic origins of the modern African crocodylian fauna are poorly understood. A Plio-Pleistocene crocodile from Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania, represents a new extinct species and shows that high crocodylian diversity in Africa persisted after the Miocene. It had prominent triangular "horns" over the ears and a relatively deep snout, these resemble those of the recently extinct Malagasy crocodile Voay robustus, but the new species lacks features found among osteolaemines and shares derived similarities with living species of Crocodylus. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The holotype consists of a partial skull and skeleton and was collected on the surface between two tuffs dated to approximately 1.84 million years (Ma, in the same interval near the type localities for the hominids Homo habilis and Australopithecus boisei. It was compared with previously-collected material from Olduvai Gorge referable to the same species. Phylogenetic analysis places the new form within or adjacent to crown Crocodylus. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The new crocodile species was the largest predator encountered by our ancestors at Olduvai Gorge, as indicated by hominid specimens preserving crocodile bite marks from these sites. The new species also reinforces the emerging view of high crocodylian diversity throughout the Neogene, and it represents one of the few extinct species referable to crown genus Crocodylus.

  8. Locomotor adaptations in Plio-Pleistocene large carnivores from the Italian Peninsula: Palaeoecological implications

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    Carlo MELORO

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Mammalian carnivores are rarely considered for environmental reconstructions because they are extremely adaptable and their geographic range is usually large. However, the functional morphology of carnivore long bones can be indicative of locomotor behaviour as well as adaptation to specific kind of habitats. Here, different long bone ratios belonging to a subsample of extant large carnivores are used to infer palaeoecology of a comparative sample of Plio-Pleistocene fossils belonging to Italian paleo-communities. A multivariate long bone shape space reveals similarities between extant and fossil carnivores and multiple logistic regression models suggest that specific indices (the brachial and the Mt/F can be applied to predict adaptations to grassland and tropical biomes. These functional indices exhibit also a phylogenetic signal to different degree. The brachial index is a significant predictor of adaptations to tropical biomes when phylogeny is taken into account, while Mt/F is not correlated anymore to habitat adaptations. However, the proportion of grassland-adapted carnivores in Italian paleo-communities exhibits a negative relationship with mean oxygen isotopic values, which are indicative of past climatic oscillations. As climate became more unstable during the Ice Ages, large carnivore guilds from the Italian peninsula were invaded by tropical/closed-adapted species. These species take advantage of the temperate forest cover that was more spread after 1.0 Ma than in the initial phase of the Quaternary (2.0 Ma when the climate was more arid [Current Zoology 57 (3: 269–283, 2011].

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

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

    2015-07-01

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

  10. Pleistocene Lake Bonneville and Eberswalde Crater of Mars: Quantitative Methods for Recognizing Poorly Developed Lacustrine Shorelines

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    Jewell, P. W.

    2014-12-01

    The ability to quantify shoreline features on Earth has been aided by advances in acquisition of high-resolution topography through laser imaging and photogrammetry. Well-defined and well-documented features such as the Bonneville, Provo, and Stansbury shorelines of Late Pleistocene Lake Bonneville are recognizable to the untrained eye and easily mappable on aerial photos. The continuity and correlation of lesser shorelines must rely quantitative algorithms for processing high-resolution data in order to gain widespread scientific acceptance. Using Savitsky-Golay filters and the geomorphic methods and criteria described by Hare et al. [2001], minor, transgressive, erosional shorelines of Lake Bonneville have been identified and correlated across the basin with varying degrees of statistical confidence. Results solve one of the key paradoxes of Lake Bonneville first described by G. K. Gilbert in the late 19th century and point the way for understanding climatically driven oscillations of the Last Glacial Maximum in the Great Basin of the United States. Similar techniques have been applied to the Eberswalde Crater area of Mars using HRiSE DEMs (1 m horizontal resolution) where a paleolake is hypothesized to have existed. Results illustrate the challenges of identifying shorelines where long term aeolian processes have degraded the shorelines and field validation is not possible. The work illustrates the promises and challenges of indentifying remnants of a global ocean elsewhere on the red planet.

  11. Upwellings mitigated Plio-Pleistocene heat stress for reef corals on the Florida platform (USA)

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    Brachert, Thomas C.; Reuter, Markus; Krüger, Stefan; Kirkerowicz, Julia; Klaus, James S.

    2016-03-01

    The fast growing calcareous skeletons of zooxanthellate reef corals (z corals) represent unique environmental proxy archives through their oxygen and carbon stable isotope composition (δ18O, δ13C). In addition, the accretion of the skeleton itself is ultimately linked to the environment and responds with variable growth rates (extension rate) and density to environmental changes. Here we present classical proxy data (δ18O, δ13C) in combination with calcification records from 15 massive z corals. The z corals were sampled from four interglacial units of the Florida carbonate platform (USA) dated approximately 3.2, 2.9, 1.8 and 1.2 Ma (middle Pliocene to early Pleistocene). The z corals (Solenastrea, Orbicella, Porites) derive from unlithified shallow marine carbonates and were carefully screened for primary preservation suited for proxy analysis. We show that skeletal accretion responded with decreasing overall calcification rates (decreasing extension rate but increasing density) to warmer water temperatures. Under high annual water temperatures, inferred from sub-annually resolved δ18O data, skeletal bulk density was high, but extension rates and overall calcification rates were at a minimum (endmember scenario 1). Maximum skeletal density was reached during the summer season giving rise to a growth band of high density within the annually banded skeletons ("high density band", HDB). With low mean annual water temperatures (endmember scenario 2), bulk skeletal density was low but extension rates and calcification rates reached a maximum, and under these conditions the HDB formed during winter. Although surface water temperatures in the Western Atlantic warm pool during the interglacials of the late Neogene were ˜ 2 °C higher than they are in the present day, intermittent upwelling of cool, nutrient-rich water mitigated water temperatures off south-western Florida and created temporary refuges for z coral growth. Based on the sub-annually resolved δ18O and

  12. A terrestrial Pliocene-Pleistocene temperature record from North-Western Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dearing Crampton Flood, Emily; Peterse, Francien; Munsterman, Dirk; Sinninghe Damste, Jaap

    2016-04-01

    The Mid-Pliocene Warm Period (MPWP) (ca 3.3 to 3.0 Ma) is the most recent geological interval that serves as an appropriate analogue to our current climate for two main reasons. Firstly, atmospheric CO2 levels were similar (400 - 450 ppmv) to present day levels. Secondly, continental configurations during the Pliocene were largely similar to the present day. The MPWP is especially interesting regarding future climate predictions as global temperatures were roughly 2 - 3 °C warmer than present, indicating that current climate may not yet be in equilibrium. Reconstructions of MPWP sea surface temperatures (SSTs) indicate SSTs were warmer than present, particularly at high latitudes (ΔSST = 2 - 6 °C). However, continental temperatures for this interval remain poorly constrained due to a lack of trustworthy proxies, and scarcity of terrestrial sedimentary archives. Here we analysed branched GDGTs (brGDGTs) in a sediment core from the Netherlands to reconstruct continental mean air temperatures (MAT) in North-Western Europe during the Early Pliocene to mid-Pleistocene. BrGDGTs are membrane lipids of organisms living predominantly in soils whose relative distributions relate with the temperature and pH of the soil in which they are biosynthesized. BrGDGTs can be delivered to coastal marine sediments by fluvially transported soil material. Due to the coastal position of the sample site, land-sea climate correlations can be studied by analysing temperature-sensitive marine biomarkers, i.e. alkenones and long chain diols, in the same sediment, and subsequently applying the Uk37', TEX86, and long chain diol index (LDI) paleothermometers. The obtained MAT record can be divided into four main events: two small 'glacial' events, the MPWP, and the onset of Northern Hemisphere glaciation marking the onset of the Pleistocene, the latter being characterized by unstable and fluctuating temperatures. The glacial periods have been tentatively assigned according to the De Schepper

  13. Insights into Pleistocene palaeoenvironments and biostratigraphy in southern Buenos Aires province (Argentina) from continental deposits

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    Beilinson, E.; Gasparini, G. M.; Soibelzon, L. H.; Soibelzon, E.

    2015-07-01

    , palaeoenvironmental and biostratigraphical proxies. Calcisol profiles, displaying Stages II to V morphologies (Machette, 1985), can be interpreted as evidence of periods of geomorphological stability that occurred under semi-arid to sub-humid climatic conditions. The occurrence of argillic Protosols stacked amongst the Calcisols evidence periods of relatively less stability, higher sediment supply and aggradation rates in the system. The vertebrate fossil assemblage and the invertebrate trace fossils also indicate semi-open landscapes under a seasonal, semi-arid climate. The presence of Platygonus, Glyptodon and Tolypeutes fossil remains in the lower interval suggest an Ensenadan age (middle Pleistocene) while the presence of Arctotherium bonariense in the V1 layer indicates post-Ensenadan (late Pleistocene) times for the middle interval. It is concluded that during accumulation of the Chocorí succession, glacio-eustasy and/or climate controlled the balance between generation of accommodation space and sediment supply. Analysis of the architectural elements indicates a general reduction in accommodation space. The lower interval represents the unconfined reaches of a large distributive system, more specifically, a low hierarchy, secondary drainage system inset in a high accommodation alluvial environment. The erosive surface identified at the base of the middle interval can be interpreted as representative of a period of negative accommodation in the system, when general erosion took place. The gradual restoration of accommodation in the fluvial system was accompanied by a low sediment accumulation rate and the development of a braided fluvial system in the middle interval.

  14. A lacustrine record from Lop Nur, Xinjiang, China: Implications for paleoclimate change during Late Pleistocene

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    Chao, L.; Zicheng, P.; Dong, Y.; Weiguo, L.; Zhaofeng, Z.; Jianfeng, H.; Chenlin, C.

    2009-01-01

    Climate variability during the Late Pleistocene is studied from the proxies in core CK-2 drilled from the Luobei Depression (91??03???E, 40??47???N), Lop Nur in the eastern Tarim Basin, Xinjiang, China. Geophysical and geochemical properties, including magnetic susceptibility, granularity, chroma, carbonate content, loss on ignition and trace elements, have been determined to reconstruct the environmental evolution of the area during 32-9 ka BP. The chronology is established by uranium-thorium disequilibrium dating techniques. Our data suggest four paleoclimate stages, indicating glacial variations between cold-humid and warm-arid environments. A period of extreme humidity occurred during 31,900-19,200 yr BP is attributed the last glacial maximum (LGM). The period was followed by a warm-arid episode during 19,200-13,500 yr BP. Then a cold-humid interval during 13,500-12,700 yr BP may correspond to another cooling phases at high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. The last stage from 12,700 to 9000 yr BP has a trend that the climate turned warm and arid. The Lop Nur region is characterized by particularly humid stadials and arid interstadials. The climate variability in Lop Nur was constrained by global climate change because it is correlated with Dansgaard-Oeschger and Heinrich events, which were observed at the northern high latitudes. The synchroneity of the palaeoclimatic events suggested that cold air activity at the northern high latitudes was the most important factor that influenced the climate evolution in the Lop Nur region. A probable mechanism that involves the migration of westerly winds is proposed to interpret this synchroneity. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd.

  15. 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.

  16. Late Pleistocene glaciation of the Mt Giluwe volcano, Papua New Guinea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrows, T.T.; Hope, G.S.; Prentice, M.L.; Fifield, L.K.; Tims, S.G.

    2011-01-01

    The Mt Giluwe shield volcano was the largest area glaciated in Papua New Guinea during the Pleistocene. Despite minimal cooling of the sea surface during the last glacial maximum, glaciers reached elevations as low as 3200 m. To investigate changes in the extent of ice through time we have re-mapped evidence for glaciation on the southwest flank of Mt Giluwe. We find that an ice cap has formed on the flanks of the mountain on at least three, and probably four, separate occasions. To constrain the ages of these glaciations we present 39 new cosmogenic 36Cl exposure ages complemented by new radiocarbon dates. Direct dating of the moraines identifies that the maximum extent of glaciation on the mountain was not during the last glacial maximum as previously thought. In conjunction with existing potassium/argon and radiocarbon dating, we recognise four distinct glacial periods between 293-306 ka (Gogon Glaciation), 136-158 ka (Mengane Glaciation), centred at 62 ka (Komia Glaciation) and from >20.3-11.5 ka (Tongo Glaciation). The temperature difference relative to the present during the Tongo Glaciation is likely to be of the order of at least 5 ??C which is a minimum difference for the previous glaciations. During the Tongo Glaciation, ice was briefly at its maximum for less than 1000 years, but stayed near maximum levels for nearly 4000 years, until about 15.4 ka. Over the next 4000 years there was more rapid retreat with ice free conditions by the early Holocene. ?? 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

  17. Pleistocene Thermocline Reconstruction and Oxygen Minimum Zone Evolution in the Maldives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, S. M.; Wright, J.

    2017-12-01

    Drift deposits of the southern flank the Kardiva Channel in the eastern Inner Sea of the Maldives provide a complete record of Pleistocene water column changes in conjunction with monsoon cyclicity and fluctuations in the current system. We sampled IODP Site 359-U1467 to reconstruct water column using foraminiferal stable isotope records. This unlithified lithostratigraphic unit is rich in well-preserved microfossils and has an average sedimentation rate of 3.4 cm/yr. Marine Isotope Stages 1-6 were identified and show higher sedimentation rates during the interglacial sections approaching 6 cm/kyr. We present the δ13C and δ18O record of planktonic and benthic foraminiferal species taken at intervals of 3 cm. Globigerinoides ruber was used to constrain surface conditions. The thermocline dwelling species, Globorotalia menardii, was chosen to monitor fluctuations in the thermocline compared to the mixed layer. Lastly, the δ13C of the benthic species, Cibicidoides subhaidingerii and Planulina renzi, reveal changes to the bottom water ventilation and expansion of oxygen minimum zones over time. All three taxa recorded similar changes in δ18O over the glacial/interglacial cycles which is remarkable given the large sea level change ( 120 m) and the relatively shallow water depth ( 450 m). There is a small increase in the δ13C gradient during the glacial intervals which might reflect less ventilated bottom waters in the Inner Sea. This multispecies approach allows us to better constrain the thermocline hydrography and suggests that changes in the OMZ thickness are driven by the intensification of the monsoon cycles while painting a more cohesive picture to the changes in the water column structure.

  18. Statistical pattern analysis of surficial karst in the Pleistocene Miami oolite of South Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Paul (Mitch); Purkis, Sam; Reyes, Bella

    2018-05-01

    A robust airborne light detection and ranging digital terrain model (LiDAR DTM) and select outcrops are used to examine the extent and characteristics of the surficial karst overprint of the late Pleistocene Miami oolite in South Florida. Subaerial exposure of the Miami oolite barrier bar and shoals to a meteoric diagenetic environment, lasting ca. 120 kyr from the end of the last interglacial highstand MIS 5e until today, has resulted in diagenetic alteration including surface and shallow subsurface dissolution producing extensive dolines and a few small stratiform caves. Analysis of the LiDAR DTM suggests that >50% of the dolines in the Miami oolite have been obscured/lost to urbanization, though a large number of depressions remain apparent and can be examined for trends and spatial patterns. The verified dolines are analyzed for their size and depth, their lateral distribution and relation to depositional topography, and the separation distance between them. Statistical pattern analysis shows that the average separation distance and average density of dolines on the strike-oriented barrier bar versus dip-oriented shoals is statistically inseparable. Doline distribution on the barrier bar is clustered because of the control exerted on dissolution by the depositional topography of the shoal system, whereas patterning of dolines in the more platform-ward lower-relief shoals is statistically indistinguishable from random. The areal extent and depth of dissolution of the dolines are well described by simple mathematical functions, and the depth of the dolines increases as a function of their size. The separation and density results from the Miami oolite are compared to results from other carbonate terrains. Near-surface, stratiform caves in the Miami oolite occur in sites where the largest and deepest dolines are present, and sit at, or near, the top of the present water table.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

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

  20. Hybridization among Arctic white-headed gulls (Larus spp.) obscures the genetic legacy of the Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Chesser, R. Terry; Bell, Douglas A.; Dove, Carla J.

    2012-01-01

    We studied the influence of glacial oscillations on the genetic structure of seven species of white-headed gull that breed at high latitudes (Larus argentatus, L. canus, L. glaucescens, L. glaucoides, L. hyperboreus, L. schistisagus, and L. thayeri). We evaluated localities hypothesized as ice-free areas or glacial refugia in other Arctic vertebrates using molecular data from 11 microsatellite loci, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region, and six nuclear introns for 32 populations across the Holarctic. Moderate levels of genetic structure were observed for microsatellites (FST= 0.129), introns (ΦST= 0.185), and mtDNA control region (ΦST= 0.461), with among-group variation maximized when populations were grouped based on subspecific classification. Two haplotype and at least two allele groups were observed across all loci. However, no haplotype/allele group was composed solely of individuals of a single species, a pattern consistent with recent divergence. Furthermore, northernmost populations were not well differentiated and among-group variation was maximized when L. argentatus and L. hyberboreus populations were grouped by locality rather than species, indicating recent hybridization. Four populations are located in putative Pleistocene glacial refugia and had larger t estimates than the other 28 populations. However, we were unable to substantiate these putative refugia using coalescent theory, as all populations had genetic signatures of stability based on mtDNA. The extent of haplotype and allele sharing among Arctic white-headed gull species is noteworthy. Studies of other Arctic taxa have generally revealed species-specific clusters as well as genetic structure within species, usually correlated with geography. Aspects of white-headed gull behavioral biology, such as colonization ability and propensity to hybridize, as well as their recent evolutionary history, have likely played a large role in the limited genetic structure observed.

  1. Tortoises as a dietary supplement: A view from the Middle Pleistocene site of Qesem Cave, Israel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blasco, Ruth; Rosell, Jordi; Smith, Krister T.; Maul, Lutz Christian; Sañudo, Pablo; Barkai, Ran; Gopher, Avi

    2016-02-01

    Dietary reconstructions can offer an improved perspective on human capacities of adaptation to the environment. New methodological approaches and analytical techniques have led to a theoretical framework for understanding how human groups used and adapted to their local environment. Faunal remains provide an important potential source of dietary information and allow study of behavioural variation and its evolutionary significance. Interest in determining how hominids filled the gaps in large prey availability with small game or what role small game played in pre-Upper Palaeolithic societies is an area of active research. Some of this work has focused on tortoises because they represent an important combination of edible and non-edible resources that are easy to collect if available. The exploitation of these slow-moving animals features prominently in prey choice models because the low handling costs of these reptiles make up for their small body size. Here, we present new taphonomic data from two tortoise assemblages extracted from the lower sequence of the Middle Pleistocene site of Qesem Cave, Israel (420-300 ka), with the aim of assessing the socio-economic factors that may have led to the inclusion of this type of resource in the human diets. We show that hominid damage on large tortoise specimens from Qesem Cave is not unusual and that evidence such as cut marks, percussion marks and consistent patterns of burning suggests established sequences of processing, including cooking in the shell, defleshing, and direct percussion to access the visceral content. These matters make it possible not only to assess the potential role of tortoises as prey, but also to evaluate collecting behaviour in the resource acquisition systems and eco-social strategies at the Acheulo-Yabrudian Cultural Complex (AYCC) in the southern Levant.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1995-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Klug

    2016-12-01

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

  4. Temporal overlap of humans and giant lizards (Varanidae; Squamata) in Pleistocene Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Gilbert J.; Louys, Julien; Cramb, Jonathan; Feng, Yue-xing; Zhao, Jian-xin; Hocknull, Scott A.; Webb, Gregory E.; Nguyen, Ai Duc; Joannes-Boyau, Renaud

    2015-10-01

    An obvious but key prerequisite to testing hypotheses concerning the role of humans in the extinction of late Quaternary 'megafauna' is demonstrating that humans and the extinct taxa overlapped, both temporally and spatially. In many regions, a paucity of reliably dated fossil occurrences of megafauna makes it challenging, if not impossible, to test many of the leading extinction hypotheses. The giant monitor lizards of Australia are a case in point. Despite commonly being argued to have suffered extinction at the hands of the first human colonisers (who arrived by 50 ka), it has never been reliably demonstrated that giant monitors and humans temporally overlapped in Australia. Here we present the results of an integrated U-Th and 14C dating study of a late Pleistocene fossil deposit that has yielded the youngest dated remains of giant monitor lizards in Australia. The site, Colosseum Chamber, is a cave deposit in the Mt Etna region, central eastern Australia. Sixteen new dates were generated and demonstrate that the bulk of the material in the deposit accumulated since ca. 50 ka. The new monitor fossil is, minimally, 30 ky younger than the previous youngest reliably dated record for giant lizards in Australia and for the first time, demonstrates that on a continental scale, humans and giant lizards overlapped in time. The new record brings the existing geochronological dataset for Australian giant monitor lizards to seven dated occurrences. With such sparse data, we are hesitant to argue that our new date represents the time of their extinction from the continent. Rather, we suspect that future fossil collecting will yield new samples both older and younger than 50 ka. Nevertheless, we unequivocally demonstrate that humans and giant monitor lizards overlapped temporally in Australia, and thus, humans can only now be considered potential drivers for their extinction.

  5. Brief communication: Plio-Pleistocene eagle predation on fossil cercopithecids from the Humpata Plateau, southern Angola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Christopher C; McGraw, W Scott; Delson, Eric

    2009-07-01

    Recent studies suggest a large raptor such as the crowned eagle (Stephanaoetus coronatus) was responsible for collecting at least a portion of the primate fauna from the South African fossil site of Taung, including its lone hominin specimen. This taphonomic signature at Taung is currently regarded as a unique and, most likely, isolated case in primate and human evolution. However, the activities of large, carnivorous birds should also be detectable at other primate fossil localities in Africa if raptors have been a strong selective force throughout primate evolution. Over the last 60 years, a collection of extinct cercopithecids has been assembled from several cave breccias on the Humpata Plateau in southern Angola. The material, dated near the Plio-Pleistocene boundary, includes an assortment of craniodental and postcranial remains variably assigned to Papio (Dinopithecus) cf. quadratirostris, Parapapio, Cercopithecoides, and Theropithecus. We compare the Angolan and Taung material to remains of extant primates killed by crowned eagles in the Ivory Coast's Tai National Park. Our analysis indicates that the size distribution and composition of fauna from the localities is quite similar and that there are striking consistencies in damage to the crania from each site. The absence of large bodied (>20 kg) primates and other mammalian taxa at the Taung hominin locality and Tai, and their rarity in Angola, combined with the strong likelihood that raptor nests were positioned near fissure openings at both fossil localities, provides additional support for eagle involvement. On the basis of this evidence, we conclude that at least some of the Angolan cercopithecids were most likely raptor prey and hypothesize that raptor predation has been a strong and perhaps underappreciated selective force during the course of primate evolution.

  6. Radiolarian Indices of Paleoproductivity Variation in the late Pleistocene Benguela Upwelling System, ODP Site 1084

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittniok, B. B.; Lazarus, D. B.; Diester-Haass, L.; Billups, K.; Meyers, P.

    2006-12-01

    Changes in export productivity play a significant role in ocean carbon budgets and global climate change. Proxies for export productivity can be difficult to interpret: benthic foraminifera accumulation rates (BFAR) can be affected by carbonate dissolution in organic-carbon rich sediments; bulk opal can be affected by silica limitation of source waters. Recent work (Lazarus et al. 2006; Mar. Micropal.) has shown that a new index based on radiolarian faunal changes (WADE ratio) correlates well to total organic carbon (TOC) values from the same samples over the long term (latest Miocene-Recent) history of productivity in the Benguela Upwelling System (BUS). We present new data on variation in export productivity proxies (WADE, TOC, carbonate, radiolarian opal, BFAR) for the last glacial-interglacial cycle from ODP Site 1084, located just offshore from the main coastal upwelling cells of the BUS. Our age model, from mean Quaternary sedimentation rates (Leg 175 Scientific Results), is in accordance with cyclic variation in other climate sensitive parameters (carbonate and color reflectance). Although opal content and radiolarian preservation is only moderate in our samples, WADE values vary significantly and suggest higher productivity during the last glacial, in accordance with current interpretations of BUS history. Radiolarian opal accumulation is also higher during the last glacial, suggesting that silica limitation (opal paradox) conditions did not dominate over this time period. Similar results for bulk opal have been reported from late Quaternary piston cores from the more northerly Congo upwelling region (Schneider et al, 1997; Paleoc.). We conclude that WADE ratios are a useful proxy for late Pleistocene productivity in the BUS at glacial- interglacial time scales.

  7. Pleistocene cohesive debris flows at Nevado de Toluca Volcano, central Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capra, L.; Macías, J. L.

    2000-10-01

    During the Pleistocene, intense hydrothermal alteration promoted a flank failure of the southern portion of Nevado de Toluca volcano. This event produced a debris avalanche that transformed into a cohesive debris flow (Pilcaya deposit) owing to water saturation and weakness of the altered pre-avalanche rocks. The Pilcaya debris flow traveled along a narrow tectonic depression up to a distance of 40 km and then spread over a flat plain reaching up to 55 km from the volcano summit. This transition zone corresponds with a sudden break in slope from 5 to 0.5° that caused a rapid reduction in velocity and thickening of the flow that consequently reduced its competence to transport large particles. The resulting deposit thickens from 15 to 40 m, and contains boulders up to 15 m in diameter that form hummocky morphology close to the transitional zone. Sometime after the emplacement of the Pilcaya debris flow, heavy rains and superficial drainage contributed to remobilize the upper portions of the deposit causing two secondary lahars. These debris flows called El Mogote, traveled up to 75 km from the volcano. The edifice collapse generated lahars with a total volume of 2.8 km3 that devastated an approximate area of 250 km2. The area versus volume plot for both deposits shows that the magnitude of the event is comparable to other cohesive debris flows such as the Teteltzingo lahar (Pico de Orizaba, Mexico) and the Osceola mudflow (Mount Rainier, Wa). The Pilcaya debris flow represents additional evidence of debris flow transformed from a flank failure, a potentially devastating phenomenon that could threaten distant areas from the volcano previously considered without risk.

  8. Geochemical Characterization of Late Pleistocene and Holocene Tephra Layers from the Basin of Mexico, Central Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortega-Guerrero, Beatriz; Newton, Anthony J.

    1998-07-01

    In order to aid palaeoenvironmental research of Late Pleistocene and Holocene deposits of central Mexico, tephra layers collected from the sediments of the Texcoco and Chalco sub-basins, in the southern part of the Basin of Mexico, are geochemically characterized and used as stratigraphic markers. The tephra layers range in composition from basaltic andesites to rhyolites and are calc-alkaline. The tephras range in age from >34,000 to ca. 2600 14C yr B.P. New names are used informally to designate correlated tephras. The Tlahuac tephra is present in Chalco, at a depth of 18 m; in the southeastern part of Texcoco, at a depth of around 10 m; and at the Tlapacoya archaeological site, where it had been mistakenly described as basaltic. This basalt-andesite tephra is dated to at least 34,000 14C yr B.P. The Tlapacoya 1 tephra is dated to between 15,020 ± 450 and 14,430 ± 190 yr B.P. and is present in all Chalco sections. The Tlapacoya 2 tephra corresponds to the previously described "pomez gruesa con fragmentos de andesita" (ca. 14,400 yr B.P.) and is present in all Chalco and Texcoco sections. The likely source of these three tephras is the volcano Popocatepetl. Tephra II at Chalco dates to 12,520 ± 135 yr B.P. and correlates with the Upper Toluca Pumice from Nevado de Toluca volcano. These represent the first geochemical glass-shard analysis of tephras from the Basin of Mexico, and so further research is necessary before a reliable tephrochronology can be established.

  9. Microbes Enhance Mobility of Arsenic in Pleistocene Aquifer Sand from Bangladesh

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhar, Ratan K.; Zheng, Yan; Saltikov, Chad W.; Radloff, Kathleen A.; Mailloux, Brian; Ahmed, Kazi. M.; van Geen, Alexander

    2018-01-01

    Dissimilatory metal-reducing bacteria can mobilize As, but few studies have studied such processes in deeper orange-colored Pleistocene sands containing 1–2 mg kg−1 As that are associated with low-As groundwater in Bangladesh. To address this gap, anaerobic incubations were conducted in replicate over 90 days using natural orange sands initially containing 0.14 mg kg−1 of 1 M phosphate-extractable As (24 hr), >99% as As(V), and 0.8 g kg−1 of 1.2 M HCl-leachable Fe (1 hr at 80°C), 95% as Fe(III). The sediment was resuspended in artificial groundwater, with or without lactate as a labile carbon source, and inoculated with metal-reducing Shewanella sp. ANA-3. Within 23 days, dissolved As concentrations increased to 17 μg L−1 with lactate, 97% as As(III), and 2 μg L−1 without lactate. Phosphate-extractable As concentrations increased 4-fold to 0.6 mg kg−1 in the same incubations, even without the addition of lactate. Dissolved As levels in controls without Shewanella, both with and without lactate, instead remained <1 μg L−1. These observations indicate that metal-reducers such as Shewanella can trigger As release to groundwater by converting sedimentary As to a more mobilizable form without the addition of high levels of labile carbon. Such interactions need to be better understood to determine the vulnerability of low-As aquifers from which drinking water is increasingly drawn in Bangladesh. PMID:21405115

  10. Pleistocene atmospheric CO2 change linked to Southern Ocean nutrient utilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziegler, M.; Diz, P.; Hall, I. R.; Zahn, R.

    2011-12-01

    Biological uptake of CO2 by the ocean and its subsequent storage in the abyss is intimately linked with the global carbon cycle and constitutes a significant climatic force1. The Southern Ocean is a particularly important region because its wind-driven upwelling regime brings CO2 laden abyssal waters to the surface that exchange CO2 with the atmosphere. The Subantarctic Zone (SAZ) is a CO2 sink and also drives global primary productivity as unutilized nutrients, advected with surface waters from the south, are exported via Subantarctic Mode Water (SAMW) as preformed nutrients to the low latitudes where they fuel the biological pump in upwelling areas. Recent model estimates suggest that up to 40 ppm of the total 100 ppm atmospheric pCO2 reduction during the last ice age were driven by increased nutrient utilization in the SAZ and associated feedbacks on the deep ocean alkalinity. Micro-nutrient fertilization by iron (Fe), contained in the airborne dust flux to the SAZ, is considered to be the prime factor that stimulated this elevated photosynthetic activity thus enhancing nutrient utilization. We present a millennial-scale record of the vertical stable carbon isotope gradient between subsurface and deep water (Δδ13C) in the SAZ spanning the past 350,000 years. The Δδ13C gradient, derived from planktonic and benthic foraminifera, reflects the efficiency of biological pump and is highly correlated (rxy = -0.67 with 95% confidence interval [0.63; 0.71], n=874) with the record of dust flux preserved in Antarctic ice cores6. This strongly suggests that nutrient utilization in the SAZ was dynamically coupled to dust-induced Fe fertilization across both glacial-interglacial and faster millennial timescales. In concert with ventilation changes of the deep Southern Ocean this drove ocean-atmosphere CO2 exchange and, ultimately, atmospheric pCO2 variability during the late Pleistocene.

  11. Magma evolution in the Pliocene Pleistocene succession of Kos, South Aegean arc (Greece)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pe-Piper, Georgia; Moulton, Ben

    2008-11-01

    This study investigates the petrogenesis of Pliocene-Quaternary andesites, dacites and rhyolites of the island of Kos. These volcanic rocks differ from other volcanic centres in the South Aegean arc in the narrow range of Pliocene volcanic products, the abundance of high-silica rhyolite, the lower ɛNd for a given Sr isotope composition, and greater depth to the subducting slab. Pliocene and early Pleistocene dacite stocks and rhyolite domes are succeeded by younger tuffs, notably the 0.16 Ma Kos Plateau Tuff derived from a super-eruption of an andesite stratocone now subsided beneath the sea south of Kos. Volcanic products in tuffs have been sampled from lithic clasts. Andesite, dacite and rhyolite all have ɛNd ˜+ 1.5 to -1.5 and 86Sr/ 87Sr ˜ 0.7042; this unusual composition is argued to be the result of subduction of sediments derived from the River Nile. All rock types show structures indicative of widespread magma mixing, including complexly zoned plagioclase, clinopyroxene and amphibole containing glass inclusions of trachyte and rhyolite compositions. The observed rocks result from fractionation and mixing of three principal magma types: (a) calc-alkaline high-Al basalt that fractionated to andesite at the base of crust; (b) partially melted metabasaltic amphibolite underplated at the base of crust, that fractionated to produce high-SiO 2 rhyolite; and (c) a minor component of trachytic magma from partial melting of enriched subcontinental lithospheric mantle. The complexly zoned phenocrysts with glass inclusions provide specific evidence for mixing of these three components. Specifically, it was the emplacement of the andesite into a voluminous rhyolite magma in a mid-crustal magma chamber that led to the explosive Kos Plateau Tuff super-eruption.

  12. The influence of sea-level changes on tropical coastal lowlands; the Pleistocene Coropina Formation, Suriname

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Th. E.; de Kramer, R.; de Boer, P. L.; Langereis, C.; Sew-A-Tjon, J.

    2009-04-01

    The Pleistocene Coropina Formation largely constitutes the Old Coastal Plain of Suriname. It is exposed fully only in open-pit bauxite mines in the central coastal plain as part of the unconsolidated overburden of Paleocene-Eocene bauxites. This study deals with the stratigraphy, sedimentology and chronology of this formation, and is based on a study in the recently closed Lelydorp-III bauxite mine operated by N.V. BHP Billiton Maatschappij Suriname. The Coropina Formation consists of the Para and Lelydorp Members. We present a detailed lithological subdivision of these members. In the Para Member, four units are discerned which are grouped in two transgressive cycles, both ranging upward from terrestrial towards chenier and coastal mudflat deposits reflecting glacio-eustatic sea-level changes. The sandy sediments represent fluviatile and beach-bar (chenier) deposits, and were supplied by rivers from the Precambrian basement and to a lesser extent by westward longshore coastal drift. Clays, largely derived from the Amazon River and transported alongshore over the shelf, were deposited in extensive coastal mudflats. The Lelydorp Member, also comprising four units, represents a depositional system that is closely comparable to the recent Suriname coastal setting, i.e., a lateral and vertical alternation of mudflat and chenier deposits formed over a period characterised by more or less constant sea level. Palaeomagnetic data indicate a dominantly reversed magnetic polarity in the Para Member, whereas the Lelydorp Member shows a normal magnetic polarity with a minor reversed polarity overprint. The reversed polarities of the Para Member exclude a Brunhes Chron (0.78-0.0 Ma) age, and thus assign it to the Matuyama Chron (2.58-0.78 Ma). This implies that the Coropina Formation is much older than hitherto assumed, and that one or more (long-term) hiatuses are not recognizable in the lithological succession.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-07-04

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

  14. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene surficial deposits and landforms of Yosemite Valley, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haddon, E. K.; Stock, G. M.; Booth, D. B.

    2016-12-01

    Field studies on the surficial geology and geomorphology of Yosemite Valley since the 1870's formed an early basis for our understanding of Quaternary landscape evolution in the central Sierra Nevada. These landmark studies described the erosional origin of Yosemite's iconic scenery, but left details of the latest Pleistocene and Holocene sedimentary record for later investigation. We combined mapping of deposits and landforms with geochronology to reconstruct the geomorphic evolution of Yosemite Valley since the 15 ka retreat of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) valley glacier. We document a sustained period of relative landscape stability, characterized by valley-bottom aggradation of glacial till, fluvial sediments, and lacustrine silts, as well as valley-margin accumulation of talus and fan alluvium. Recessional moraines, episodically emplaced rock avalanches, and alluvial fans impeded surface flow and controlled the local base level. This predominantly aggradational regime then shifted to incision in the earliest Holocene, likely due to a diminishing supply of glacial sediment, and created a flight of fluvial terraces inset by up to 9 m. The volume of fringing talus and fan alluvium in comparison with fluvial terrace sequences emphasizes the importance of valley-wall erosion as a sediment source. Cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages from rock avalanche boulders and 14C charcoal ages from deltaic sequences and inset fluvial gravels suggest variable rates of Holocene river incision. Although some incision events likely record local base level changes at the El Capitan LGM recessional moraine, the presence of perched, well-developed outwash terraces downstream indicates a more regional climatic forcing. These findings, including the depositional record of land-use disturbances over the past two centuries, help illuminate the geologic evolution of this celebrated landscape and inform ongoing river-restoration work.

  15. MALACOLOGICAL RESPONSE TO PLEISTOCENE SEA-LEVEL CHANGE IN THE NORTHERN PO PLAIN, N. ITALY: DETAILED PALAEOENVIRONMENTAL RECONSTRUCTIONS FROM TWO LOMBARDIAN CORES

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    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. 

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

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

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    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

  2. 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.

  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. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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).

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

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    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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. New data about the presence of Lepus in the middle and upper pleistocene of Mediterranean Iberia: Bolomor cave (Valencia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfred Sanchis Serra

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available We present novel data on the presence of the hare in the Valencian zone during Middle and Upper Pleistocene. An interesting, though small, sample of bone from Bolomor has been assigned to this genus from lagomorphs His appearance in the initial phase of occupation of the cavity (MIS 9 corresponds, for the moment, the earliest mention of Lepus in this area (ca. 350 ka. The determination of other bones of Lepus in the upper levels of the site (MIS 6 and 5e, along with other references, confirms the continuity of the genus to the Holocene.

  11. Probe into the origin, development and evolution model of shelf desertizational environment in the last stage of Late Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Hong-Jun; Liu, Jing-Pu; Shan, Qiu-Mei

    1998-12-01

    Based on study of China's shelf paleoenvironment, this paper summarises the definition of shelf desertization that occurred in the last stage of Late Pleistocene, and discusses the background of its formation and evolution process. Study of shallow layer profiler records and core data revealed that cold-dry aeolian erosion was the major exogenic force on the exposed shelf. Under the prevailing paleo-winter monsoon, part of the exposed marine stratum disintegrated into sand and then desertization occurred. The fine sediments were blown away and deposited on the leeward to form derivative loess deposits.

  12. Ancient DNA analyses exclude humans as the driving force behind late Pleistocene musk ox (Ovibos moschatus) population dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campos, Paula; Willerslev, Eske; Sher, Andrei

    2010-01-01

    The causes of the late Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions are poorly understood. Different lines of evidence point to climate change, the arrival of humans, or a combination of these events as the trigger. Although many species went extinct, others, such as caribou and bison, survived......, as it was the geographic origin of all samples studied and held a large diverse population until local extinction at approximately 45,000 radiocarbon years before present ((14)C YBP). Subsequently, musk ox genetic diversity reincreased at ca. 30,000 (14)C YBP, recontracted at ca. 18,000 (14)C YBP, and finally recovered...

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Moa fossils and chronology of a Pleistocene terrace sequence, Tauweru, Wairarapa, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Collen, J.D.; Grapes, R.H.; Eager, S.H.

    2000-01-01

    The fortuitous preservation of bones of the medium-sized moa Euryapteryx geranoides (Owen) in Pleistocene colluvial sediments near Tauweru, Wairarapa, has allowed radiocarbon dating of a terrace sequence along the lower Tauweru River. The bones were in a shelly, conglomeratic sandstone on an erosion surface cut into mid-Pliocene (Waipipian) siltstone, and were overlain by loess and situated immediately adjacent to onlapping fluvial gravels. Most of the bones are from a single skeleton buried articulated and apparently nearly complete, and there is also a single left tibiotarsus from a slightly larger bird. Bone from the right femur gave a radiocarbon age of 14 262 +/- 87 yr BP by accelerator mass spectrometry. The material was slightly chalky and had a low collagen yield with a relatively large amount of humic material; contamination which would lower the measured age is thus possible. However, an amino acid profile characteristic of collagen makes it unlikely that high contaminant levels are present. The radiocarbon age for the bone is likely to be 14-18 ka (16-22 000 cal. yr) or possibly older, with the lower limit being set by the radiocarbon age and the upper limit inferred from the amount of humic contamination. This is thus the oldest moa skeleton reported from Wairarapa. Loess overlying the bones contains disseminated shards of clear rhyolitic glass with a composition identical to that of the 22.6 ka (24 500 cal. yr) Kawakawa Tephra, and gave an age by optical dating of 26 +/- 2 ka. A thicker tephra deposit within loess on a higher, deeply dissected surface may also be partly reworked; optical dating of a sample of loess from 2 m beneath it gave an age of 22 +/- 2 ka. Thermoluminescence dating of two samples of the conglomeratic deposits surrounding the bones gave ages of 52 +/- 13.2 and 102 +/- 18 ka, respectively, indicating redeposition of these sediments without resetting of the thermoluminescence signal. One of these samples was also dated by optical

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, B.; Franzese, A. M.

    2017-12-01

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

  18. Looking Back to the Future: Insight on Anthropocene beaches from Holocene and Pleistocene barriers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, A. J.; Choi, J. H.; Turney, C. S.; Dosseto, A.

    2017-12-01

    `Super' storms and accelerated rates of sea-level rise are forecast in the Anthropocene, but how coasts will respond (or even if they have started to be impacted) remain uncertain. The onset of this new anthropogenic age is considered mid-1900s when multiple indices including sea level exceed previous Holocene measurements. Centuries of sea surface elevation data, used to project an increase of up to 2m by 2100, show that the current rise started 200 years ago. Similar records of storms or shoreline evolution over these centennial time-scales do not exist. With empirical studies of coastal morphodynamics concentrated during decades of accelerated sea-level rise, present-day beaches can be considered Anthropocene features. To determine the future of vulnerable sandy shorelines, climate change scenarios of increased sea level and storm intensity have been combined with computer models integrating short-term process data with large-scale coastal evolution. The uncertainty in these models can be reduced with longer sea level and storm records as well as filling the gap between detailed beach profile/wave buoy data and generalized barrier stratigraphy. High-resolution chronostratigraphic models necessary to achieve this can be constructed using Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR), Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), and Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL). Combined GPR, OSL and LiDAR (GOaL) on prograded barriers enables analysis of shorelines back through time, by comparing behaviour since the onset of anthropogenic global warming to that in the preceding millennia. Extracting a record of coastal evolution prior to and since seas began to rise two centuries ago offers the opportunity to detect any difference indicating if/how shorelines have responded. In double barrier systems with composite Holocene and Pleistocene components GOaL can extend the Anthropocene record back to when seas were known to have been higher than today. To demonstrate the potential of GOaL, data

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  20. Reconstructing Sea Surface Conditions in the Bay of Bengal during the Mid-Pleistocene Transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagos, A. D.; Dekens, P.; Reilly, B. T.; Selkin, P. A.; Meynadier, L.; Savian, J. F.

    2017-12-01

    During the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT, 0.8-1.2Ma) Earth's glacial cycles transitioned from responding primarily to 41kyr obliquity cycles to responding to 100kyr eccentricity cycles. In the tropics, sea surface temperature (SST) in the eastern tropical Pacific cooled through the MPT, suggesting a strengthening of the equatorial Pacific zonal temperature gradient (Medina-Elizalde & Lea, 2005). The strong SST gradient would have intensified Walker Cell convection during the MPT and built up latent heat in the western Pacific, which could cause cold SST anomalies in the northern Indian Ocean (Liu et al., 2015). Due to a scarcity of records, it is unclear how climate and oceanic conditions evolved in the Indian Ocean during the MPT. A set of recent IODP expeditions, including 353 and 354, cored sediment from the Bay of Bengal. Several sites recovered by expedition 353 will be ideal for reconstructing monsoon intensity through time, while the expedition 354 cores from a longitudinal transect at 8°N are in a region not directly impacted by changes in freshwater input due to direct precipitation or run off. The sites are influenced by the northeastern migration of equatorial Indian Ocean water via the Southwest Monsoon Current, which supplies significant moisture to the monsoon. Expedition 354's southern Bay of Bengal sites are well situated for better understanding the link between the tropical Indian Ocean and the northern Bay of Bengal. We reconstructed sea surface conditions at IODP site 1452 (8°N, 87°E, 3670m water depth) in the distal Bengal Fan. A 3 meter long section of the core has been identified as the MPT using the Bruhnes/Matuyama, Jaramillo, and Cobb Mountain paleomagnetic reversals (France-Lanord et al., 2016). This section of site 1452 was sampled every 2cm ( 2kyr resolution). Approximately 30 G. sacculifer, a surface dwelling planktonic foraminifera, were picked from the 355-425μm size fraction. We measured Mg/Ca and δ18O on splits of the same

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, J.; Gardner, T.

    2016-12-01

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

  2. Surficial geology and stratigraphy of Pleistocene Lake Manix, San Bernardino County, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reheis, Marith C.; Redwine, Joanna R.; Wan, Elmira; McGeehin, John P.; VanSistine, D. Paco

    2014-01-01

    Pluvial Lake Manix and its surrounding drainage basin, in the central Mojave Desert of California, has been a focus of paleoclimate, surficial processes, and neotectonic studies by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) since about 2004. The USGS initiated studies of Lake Manix deposits to improve understanding of the paleoclimatic record and the shifts in atmospheric circulation that controlled precipitation in the Mojave Desert. Until approximately 25,000 years ago, Lake Manix was the terminus of the Mojave River, which drains northeasterly from the San Bernardino Mountains; the river currently terminates in the Soda Lake and Silver Lake playas. Pleistocene Lake Manix occupied several subbasins at its maximum extent. This map focuses on the extensive exposures created by incision of the Mojave River and its tributaries into the interbedded lacustrine and alluvial deposits within the central (Cady) and northeastern (Afton) subbasins of Lake Manix, and extends from the head of Afton Canyon to Manix Wash. The map illuminates the geomorphic development and depositional history of the lake and alluvial fans within the active tectonic setting of the eastern California shear zone, especially interactions with the left-lateral Manix fault. Lake Manix left an extraordinarily detailed but complex record of numerous transgressive-regressive sequences separated by desiccation and deposition of fan, eolian, and fluvial deposits, and punctuated by tectonic movements and a catastrophic flood that reconfigured the lake basin. Through careful observation of the intercalated lacustrine and fan sequences and by determining the precise elevations of unit contacts, this record was decoded to understand the response of the lake and river system to the interplay of climatic, geomorphic, and tectonic forces. These deposits are exposed in steep badland topography. Mapping was carried out mostly at scales of 1:12,000, although the map is presented at 1:24,000 scale, and employs custom unit

  3. Stable isotope time series and dentin increments elucidate Pleistocene proboscidean paleobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Daniel; Rountrey, Adam; Smith, Kathlyn; Fox, David

    2010-05-01

    Investigations of stable isotope composition of mineralized tissues have added greatly to our knowledge of past climates and dietary behaviors of organisms, even when they are implemented through 'bulk sampling', in which a single assay yields a single, time-averaged value. Likewise, the practice of 'sclerochronology', which documents periodic structural increments comprising a growth record for accretionary tissues, offers insights into rates of growth and age data at a scale of temporal resolution permitted by the nature of structural increments. We combine both of these approaches to analyze dental tissues of late Pleistocene proboscideans. Tusk dentin typically preserves a record of accretionary growth consisting of histologically distinct increments on daily, approximately weekly, and yearly time scales. Working on polished transverse or longitudinal sections, we mill out a succession of temporally controlled dentin samples bounded by clear structural increments with a known position in the sequence of tusk growth. We further subject each sample (or an aliquot thereof) to multiple compositional analyses - most frequently to assess δ18O and δ13C of hydroxyapatite carbonate, and δ13C and δ15N of collagen. This yields, for each animal and each series of years investigated, a set of parallel compositional time series with a temporal resolution of 1-2 months (or finer if we need additional precision). Patterns in variation of thickness of periodic sub-annual increments yield insight into intra-annual and inter-annual variation of tusk growth rate. This is informative even by itself, but it is still more valuable when coupled with compositional time series. Further, the controls on different stable isotope systems are sufficiently different that the data ensemble yields 'much more than the sum of its parts.' By assessing how compositions and growth rates covary, we monitor with greater confidence changes in local climate, diet, behavior, and health status. We

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AB Leece

    2016-05-01

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

  5. 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.    

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  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. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  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. 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

  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. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Paleosecular Type Curves for South America Based on Holocene-Pleistocene Lake Sediments Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gogorza, C. S.

    2007-05-01

    by K. M. Creer, P. Tucholka and C. E. Barton, pp 172-197, Elsevier, Amsterdam. Gogorza C.S.G., Sinito A.M., Di Tomasso I., Vilas J.F., Creer K.M., Nuñez, H., 2000a. Geomagnetic secular variations 0-12000 year as recorded by sediments from Moreno Lake (South Argentina). J. South Am. Earth Sci., 13(7), 627-645. Gogorza, C., Sinito, A. M., Vilas, J. F., Creer, K. M., Nuñez, H., 2000b. Geomagnetic Secular Variations 0-6500 Yr. As Recorded By Sediments from Lakes of South Argentina. Geophys. J. Int., 143(3), 787-798. Gogorza, C.S.G., Sinito, A. M., Lirio, J.M., Nuñez, H., Chaparro, M.,Vilas, J. F., 2002. Paleosecular variations 0-19,000 years recorded by sediments from Escondido Lake (Argentina). Phys. Earth Planet. Inter., 133, 35-55. Irurzun M.A. Gogorza C.S.G, Chaparro M.A.E., Lirio J.M., Nuñez H., Vilas J.F., Sinito A.M., 2006. Paleosecular variations recorded by Holocene-Pleistocene sediments from Lake El Trébol (Patagonia, Argentina). Phys. Earth and Planet. Inter., 154(1), 1-17.

  2. A Southern Ocean Diatom Record of the Mid-Pleistocene Transition from the Amundsen Sea, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konfirst, M. A.; Scherer, R. P.

    2010-12-01

    . Diatom abundance data and biostratigraphy are used in conjunction with paleomagnetic data (Hillenbrand et al. 2009) to extend the age model to the bottom of the core. The genera Rhizosolenia and Thalassionema appear in significant abundances (i.e. >10%) in samples where Miocene diatoms (genera: Triceratium and Denticulopsis) are observed and may therefore represent significant intervals of reworking. The age model indicates that these intervals correspond to isotope stages 12 and 16- the coldest glacial intervals in the past 1.2 myr. These genera also occur sporadically in an interval correlated to stages 21-25, and correspond to a particularly low amplitude interglacial period. This core represents a continuous record of sediment accumulation in the Amundsen Sea during the past 1.2 myr. A significant change in both sediment accumulation style and diatom assemblages is observed at 1004 cm. These are concurrent with the extinction of A. ingens and the end of the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (i.e. the onset of modern eccentricity/precession-paced glacial cycles ~700ka), and it is suggested that a major oceanographic reorganization occurred in the Southern Ocean during this time.

  3. 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.

  4. An integrated rock-magnetic and geochemical approach to loess/paleosol sequences from Bohemia and Moravia (Czech Republic): Implications for the Upper Pleistocene paleoenvironment in central Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hošek, J.; Hambach, U.; Lisá, Lenka; Matys Grygar, Tomáš; Horáček, I.; Meszner, S.; Knésl, I.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 418, 15 January (2015), s. 344-358 ISSN 0031-0182 Institutional support: RVO:67985831 ; RVO:61388980 Keywords : loess/paleosols sequences * rock-magnetism * geochemical proxies * Upper Pleistocene * paleoclimate * Central Europe Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy; DD - Geochemistry (UACH-T) Impact factor: 2.525, year: 2015

  5. 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?

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. The presence of Ursus ex gr. minimus-thibetanus in the late villányian and its position among the Pliocene and Pleistocene black bears in Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Wagner, Jan; Čermák, Stanislav; Horáček, I.

    -, č. 4 (2011), s. 39-58 ISSN 1771-1150 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/0184 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : Black bear * MN17 * Ursus aff. thibetanus * Villány 3 * Central Europe - Hungary * Ursus * Pleistocene * Pliocene Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy

  12. 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.

  13. Pleistocene magnetochronology of the fauna and Paleolithic sites in the Nihewan Basin: Significance for environmental and hominin evolution in North China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ao, H.; An, Z.; Dekkers, M.J.; Li, Y.; Xiao, G.; Zhao, H.; Qiang, X.

    2013-01-01

    The fluvio-lacustrine sequences in the Nihewan Basin of North China (known as the Nihewan Formation) are rich sources of Early Pleistocene Paleolithic sites and mammalian fossils (known as the Nihewan Fauna sensu lato), which offer an excellent opportunity to investigate the evolution of early

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. 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

  17. 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.

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

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

    2017-01-01

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

  19. 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.

  20. Geochemical characterization of the middle and late Pleistocene alluvial fan-dominated infill of the northern part of the Weihe Basin, Central China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rits, Daniël S.; Beets, Christiaan J.; Prins, Maarten A.; van Balen, Ronald T.; Troelstra, Simon R.; Luo, Chao; Wang, B.; Li, Xiaoqiang; Zhou, Jie; Zheng, Hongbo

    2017-01-01

    Major reorganizations in climate and tectonic regime occurred in East Asia during the Pleistocene, resulting in large-scale environmental changes. In this paper a detailed geochemical and mineralogical record of these changes is presented from a distal alluvial fan sedimentary sequence in the

  1. 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

  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. 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...

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Shoreline deposits and diagenesis resulting from two Late Pleistocene highstands near +5 and +6 metres, Durban, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, J.A.G.; Flores, R.M.

    1991-01-01

    In exposures of Pleistocene rocks on the east coast of South Africa, eight sedimentary facies were distinguished on the basis of petrology, grain size, internal structures and field relationships. These are interpreted as deposits of surf zone, breaker zone, swash zone, backbeach, boulder beach and dune environments. Three phases of deposition and diagenesis are recognized. As a result of the stabilising effect of pre-existing coastal facies, the deposits from successive sea level stands are stacked vertically in a narrow coast-normal strip. Early cementation prevented erosion of the deposits during subsequent transgressions. Deposition of subsequent facies took place on an existing coastal dune (Facies 1). A terrace was cut into this dune at a sea level 4.5 to 5 m above present. At this sea level, clastic shoreline sediments were deposited which make up the main sedimentary sequence exposed (Facies 2-7). The steep swash zone, coarse grain size, and comparison with modern conditions in the study area indicate clastic deposition on a high-energy, wave-dominated, microtidal coastline. Vertical stacking of progressively shallower water facies indicates progradation associated with slightly regressive conditions, prior to stranding of the succession above sea level. During a subsequent transgression to 5.5 or 6 m above present sea level, a second terrace was cut across the existing facies, which by then were partly lithified. A boulder beach (Facies 8) deposited on this terrace is indicative of high wave energy and a rocky coastline, formed by existing cemented coastal facies. Comparison with dated deposits from other parts of the South African coast suggest a Late Pleistocene age for Facies 2-8. Deposition was terminated by subsequent regression and continuing low sea levels during the remainder of the Pleistocene. Cementation of the facies took place almost entirely by carbonate precipitation. The presence of isopachous fibrous cements suggests early cementation of

  8. 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

  9. Sedimentologic and paleontologic study of the southeast coast of Buenos Aires province, Argentina: A late Pleistocene Holocene paleoenvironmental reconstruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aramayo, S. A.; Téllez, B. Gutiérrez; Schillizzi, R. A.

    2005-10-01

    A paleoenvironmental reconstruction of the southeast coast of Buenos Aires province, Argentina, is made mainly on the basis of paleontological and paleoichnological studies, supported by sedimentological analyses and radiocarbon dating. Continental late Pleistocene and continental, transitional, and marine Holocene stratigraphic units are identified. The former comprises fossil mammals and ichnites of 16000-12,000 BP. The continental early Holocene time, ca. 8100 BP, is represented by an interdune paleoenvironment in which shallow brackish ponds were colonized by diatoms, fish, rodents, and birds. A transitional paleoenvironment in the middle Holocene—6930-6570 BP—is recorded by deposits formed by estuarine crabs. During the late Holocene, between 5000 and 4800 BP, a marine transgression was recorded by a rich mollusc fauna.

  10. 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

  11. Human hyoid bones from the middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (Sierra de Atapuerca, Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, I; Arsuaga, J L; Quam, R; Carretero, J M; Gracia, A; Rodríguez, L

    2008-01-01

    This study describes and compares two hyoid bones from the middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos in the Sierra de Atapuerca (Spain). The Atapuerca SH hyoids are humanlike in both their morphology and dimensions, and they clearly differ from the hyoid bones of chimpanzees and Australopithecus afarensis. Their comparison with the Neandertal specimens Kebara 2 and SDR-034 makes it possible to begin to approach the question of temporal variation and sexual dimorphism in this bone in fossil humans. The results presented here show that the degree of metric and anatomical variation in the fossil sample was similar in magnitude and kind to living humans. Modern hyoid morphology was present by at least 530 kya and appears to represent a shared derived feature of the modern human and Neandertal evolutionary lineages inherited from their last common ancestor.

  12. Diet and Co-ecology of Pleistocene Short-Faced Bears and Brown Bears in Eastern Beringia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matheus, Paul E.

    1995-11-01

    Carbon and nitrogen stable isotope analysis of fossil bone collagen reveals that Pleistocene short-faced bears ( Arctodus simus) of Beringia were highly carnivorous, while contemporaneous brown bears ( Ursus arctos) had highly variable diets that included varying amounts of terrestrial vegetation, salmon, and small amounts of terrestrial meat. A reconsideration of the short-faced bear's highly derived morphology indicates that they foraged as scavengers of widely dispersed large mammal carcasses and were simultaneously designed both for highly efficient locomotion and for intimidating other large carnivores. This allowed Arctodus to forage economically over a large home range and seek out, procure, and defend carcasses from other large carnivores. The isotope data and this reconstruction of Arctodus' foraging behavior refute the hypothesis that competition from brown bears was a significant factor in the extinction of short-faced bears.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther Jacobson-Tepfer

    2013-09-01

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

  14. First accelerator mass spectrometry {sup 14}C dates documenting contemporaneity of nonanalog species in late Pleistocene mammal communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stafford, T.W. Jr.; Semken, H.A. Jr.; Graham, R.W.; Klippel, W.F.; Markova, A.; Smirnov, N.G.; Southon, J.

    1999-10-01

    Worldwide late Pleistocene terrestrial mammal faunas are characterized by stratigraphic associations of species that now have exclusive geographic ranges. These have been interpreted as either taphonomically mixed or representative of communities that no longer exist. Accelerator mass spectrometry {sup 14}C dates (n = 60) on single bones of stratigraphically associated fossil micromammals from two American and two Russian sites document for the first time that currently allopatric mammals occurred together between 12,000 and 22,000 yr B.P. on two continents. The existence of mammal communities without modern analogs demonstrates that Northern Hemisphere biological communities are ephemeral and that many modern biomes are younger than 12 ka. Future climate change may result in new nonanalog communities.

  15. Pyritization processes and greigite formation in the advancing sulfidization front in the Upper Pleistocene sediments of the Black Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Neretin, LN; Bottcher, ME; Jørgensen, BB

    2004-01-01

    Pyritization in late Pleistocene sediments of the Black Sea is driven by sulfide formed during anaerobic methane oxidation. A sulfidization front is formed by the opposing gradients of sulfide and dissolved iron. The sulfidization processes are controlled by the diffusion flux of sulfide from above...... and by the solid reactive iron content. Two processes of diffusion-limited pyrite formation were identified. The first process includes pyrite precipitation with the accumulation of iron sulfide precursors with the average chemical composition of FeSn (n = 1.10-1.29), including greigite. Elemental sulfur...... and polysulfides, formed from H,S by a reductive dissolution of Fe(Ill)-containing minerals, serve as intermediates to convert iron sulfides into pyrite. In the second process, a "direct" pyrite precipitation occurs through prolonged exposure of iron-containing minerals to dissolved sulfide. Methane-driven sulfate...

  16. The first occurence of a pleistocenic coral along the Brazilian coast - Age dating of the maximum of the penultimate transgression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin, L.; Bittencourt, A.C.S.P.; Silva Vilas Boas, G. da

    1982-01-01

    Age dating work on a coral from Olivenca, Bahia, Brazil, has disclosed the first occurrence of a pleistocenic coral along the Brazilian coast. This coral has its top at the present high tide level and is covered by a series of beach-ridges formed after the maximum of the penultimate transgression that rose above present sea level. Five determinations by the Ionium ( 230 Th)/Uranium method produced ages ranging from 116.000 to 142.000 years B.P., indicating that maximum in the area to have taken place 120.000-125.000 years B.P., consistent with its documentation in other parts of the world. At that time, mean sea level was 8 + - 2 m above the present. (Author) [pt

  17. Pleistocene paleo-groundwater as a pristine fresh water resource in southern Germany – evidence from stable and radiogenic isotopes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geldern, Robert van; Baier, Alfons; Subert, Hannah L.; Kowol, Sigrid; Balk, Laura; Barth, Johannes A.C.

    2014-01-01

    Shallow groundwater aquifers are often influenced by anthropogenic contaminants or increased nutrient levels. In contrast, deeper aquifers hold potentially pristine paleo-waters that are not influenced by modern recharge. They thus represent important water resources, but their recharge history is often unknown. In this study groundwater from two aquifers in southern Germany were analyzed for their hydrogen and oxygen stable isotope compositions. One sampling campaign targeted the upper aquifer that is actively recharged by modern precipitation, whereas the second campaign sampled the confined, deep Benkersandstein aquifer. The groundwater samples from both aquifers were compared to the local meteoric water line to investigate sources and conditions of groundwater recharge. In addition, the deep groundwater was dated by tritium and radiocarbon analyses. Stable and radiogenic isotope data indicate that the deep-aquifer groundwater was not part of the hydrological water cycle in the recent human history. The results show that the groundwater is older than ∼20,000 years and most likely originates from isotopically depleted melt waters of the Pleistocene ice age. Today, the use of this aquifer is strictly regulated to preserve the pristine water. Clear identification of such non-renewable paleo-waters by means of isotope geochemistry will help local water authorities to enact and justify measures for conservation of these valuable resources for future generations in the context of a sustainable water management. - Highlights: • Groundwater from deep aquifer identified as paleo-water with age over 20,000 years. • Low stable isotope values indicate recharge during Pleistocene. • Shallow aquifer mirrors stable isotope signature of average modern precipitation. • Identification of non-renewable paleo-waters enhance sustainable water management. • Strict protection measures of authorities justified by isotope geochemistry

  18. REINTERPRETATION OF THE LATE PLEISTOCENE INGARANO CAVE DEPOSIT BASED ON THE FOSSIL BIRD ASSOCIATION (APULIA, SOUTH-EASTERN ITALY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CLAUDIA BEDETTI

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available We present a study of Late Pleistocene fossil bird remains from Ingarano (Apulia, SE Italy, based on the revision of previously published material and the study of unpublished fossils bones. New field observations make it possible to simplify the stratigraphy of the deposit compared to previous work. The systematic study of the fossil bird bones revealed the presence of 15 taxa, including two hypothetical ones: Circus aeruginosus, Buteo rufinus, Aquila chrysaëtos, Falco columbarius, Falco cherrug, Alectoris graeca, Perdix perdix, Columba livia, Otus scops, Nyctea scandiaca, Nyctea scandiaca vel Bubo bubo, Athene noctua, Pyrrhocorax graculus, Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax, Corvus corone, Corvus corone vel Corvus frugilegus, Corvus corax. Our detailed study also helps improve the taphonomical interpretation of the deposit: the remains from the lower layers were accumulated after mammalian predator activity and were transported over short distances, while the ones from the upper layers show sings of intense transport, such as fractures and surface abrasion. Two different bird assemblages were recognized, respectively from the lowermost and the upper layers of the clastic succession exposed in the Ingarano deposit; this difference is also confirmed by the fossil mammal remains. The systematic study makes it possible to make palaeoenvironmental and palaeoclimatic reconstructions: both assemblages indicate open environments, and the taxa of the lower layers indicate the presence of woods and wetlands with colder characteristics, while birds of the upper layers indicate drier and warmer conditions. This analysis, and the dating established through geochemical analyses and study of lithic artefacts, lead us to date the formation of the Ingarano deposit to the Late Pleistocene, in particular to the MIS 3. The presence of a layer dated to the MIS 2 at the base of the succession indicated in previous works cannot be confirmed. 

  19. Calcareous nannoplankton assemblages across the Pliocene-Pleistocene transition in the southwestern Indian Ocean, IODP Site U1475

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    Cares, Z.; Farr, C. L.; LeVay, L.; Tangunan, D.; Brentegani, L.

    2017-12-01

    International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Expedition 361 cored six sites along the greater Agulhas Current System to track its intensity through time and to better understand its role in global oceanic circulation and climate. One of the main scientific objectives of this expedition was to determine the dynamics of the Indian-Atlantic Ocean Gateway circulation during Pliocene-Pleistocene climate changes in association with changing wind fields and migrating ocean fronts. The Indian-Atlantic Ocean Gateway contains a pronounced oceanic frontal system, the position of which has the potential to influence global climate on millennial scales. Owing to the physical differences between the frontal zones, this region has complex biogeochemistry, changes in phytoplankton distribution, and variations in primary productivity. Site U1475 was cored on the Agulhas Plateau in the Southwestern Indian Ocean and recovered a complete sequence of calcareous ooze spanning the last 7 Ma. Previous studies at this locality have shown latitudinal migrations of the frontal zones over the past 350 kyr that resulted in prominent millennial shifts in primary production, biological pump efficiency, and microfossil assemblages that coincide with Antarctic climate variability. Here we present initial results comprised of calcareous nannoplankton assemblages in order to test if similar latitudinal frontal migrations occurred during the Pliocene-Pleistocene transition (PPT; 2.7 Ma). The calcareous nannoplankton assemblage shows an abundance increase of taxa associated with cooler water and higher primary production across the PPT interval. In addition to a change in species abudance, the Shannon diversity index drops notably across the transition, which is typical of nannoplankton communities in more productive regions. These data suggest that a long-term change in sea surface temperature and nutrient availability took place across the PPT, potentially linked to the northward migration of

  20. Pleistocene to holocene expansion of the black-belt cichlid in Central America, Vieja maculicauda (Teleostei: Cichlidae.

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    Caleb D McMahan

    Full Text Available The distributions of many Northern Hemisphere organisms have been influenced by fluctuations in sea level and climatic conditions during Pleistocene interglacial periods. These cycles are associated with range contraction and refugia for northern-distributed organisms as a response to glaciers. However, lower sea levels in the tropics and sub-tropics created available habitat for expansion of the ranges of freshwater organisms. The goal of this study was to use ecological niche modeling to test the hypothesis of north to south range expansion of Vieja maculicauda associated with Pleistocene glacial cycles. Understanding the biogeography of this widespread species may help us better understand the geology and interconnectivity of Central American freshwaters. Occurrence data for V. maculicauda was based on georeferencing of all museum records of specimens recovered from FishNet2. General patterns of phylogeographic structure were assessed with mtDNA. Present day niche models were generated and subsequently projected onto paleoclimatic maps of the region during the Last Interglacial, Last Glacial Maximum, and mid-Holocene. Phylogenetic analysis of mtDNA sequence data showed no phylogeographic structure throughout the range of this widespread species. Present day niche models were congruent with the observed distribution of V. maculicauda in Central America. Results showed a lack of suitable freshwater habitat in northern Central America and Mexico during the Last Interglacial, with greatest range expansion during the Last Glacial Maximum and mid-Holocene. Results support the hypothesis of a north to south range expansion of V. maculicauda associated with glacial cycles. The wide distribution of this species compared to other closely related cichlids indicates the latter did not respond to the degree of V. maculicauda in expansion of their distributions. Future work aimed at comparisons with other species and modeling of future climatic scenarios

  1. Lineage range estimation method reveals fine-scale endemism linked to Pleistocene stability in Australian rainforest herpetofauna.

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    Rosauer, Dan F; Catullo, Renee A; VanDerWal, Jeremy; Moussalli, Adnan; Moritz, Craig

    2015-01-01

    Areas of suitable habitat for species and communities have arisen, shifted, and disappeared with Pleistocene climate cycles, and through this shifting landscape, current biodiversity has found paths to the present. Evolutionary refugia, areas of relative habitat stability in this shifting landscape, support persistence of lineages through time, and are thus crucial to the accumulation and maintenance of biodiversity. Areas of endemism are indicative of refugial areas where diversity has persisted, and endemism of intraspecific lineages in particular is strongly associated with late-Pleistocene habitat stability. However, it remains a challenge to consistently estimate the geographic ranges of intraspecific lineages and thus infer phylogeographic endemism, because spatial sampling for genetic analyses is typically sparse relative to species records. We present a novel technique to model the geographic distribution of intraspecific lineages, which is informed by the ecological niche of a species and known locations of its constituent lineages. Our approach allows for the effects of isolation by unsuitable habitat, and captures uncertainty in the extent of lineage ranges. Applying this method to the arc of rainforest areas spanning 3500 km in eastern Australia, we estimated lineage endemism for 53 species of rainforest dependent herpetofauna with available phylogeographic data. We related endemism to the stability of rainforest habitat over the past 120,000 years and identified distinct concentrations of lineage endemism that can be considered putative refugia. These areas of lineage endemism are strongly related to historical stability of rainforest habitat, after controlling for the effects of current environment. In fact, a dynamic stability model that allows movement to track suitable habitat over time was the most important factor in explaining current patterns of endemism. The techniques presented here provide an objective, practical method for estimating

  2. Middle Pleistocene lower back and pelvis from an aged human individual from the Sima de los Huesos site, Spain.

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    Bonmatí, Alejandro; Gómez-Olivencia, Asier; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Carretero, José Miguel; Gracia, Ana; Martínez, Ignacio; Lorenzo, Carlos; Bérmudez de Castro, José María; Carbonell, Eudald

    2010-10-26

    We report a nearly complete lumbar spine from the Middle Pleistocene site of the Sima de los Huesos (SH) that is assigned to the previously published SH male Pelvis 1 [Arsuaga JL, et al. (1999). Nature 399: 255-258]. The "SH Pelvis 1 individual" is a unique nearly complete lumbo-pelvic complex from the human Middle Pleistocene fossil record, and offers a rare glimpse into the anatomy and past lifeways of Homo heidelbergensis. A revised reconstruction of Pelvis 1, together with the current fossil evidence, confirms our previous hypothesis that the morphology of this pelvis represents the primitive pattern within the genus Homo. Here we argue that this primitive pattern is also characterized by sexual dimorphism in the pelvic canal shape, implying complicated deliveries. In addition, this individual shows signs of lumbar kyphotic deformity, spondylolisthesis, and Baastrup disease. This suite of lesions would have postural consequences and was most likely painful. As a result, the individual's daily physical activities would have been restricted to some extent. Reexamination of the age-at-death agrees with this individual being over 45 y old, relying on the modern human pattern of changes of the articular surfaces of the os coxae. The presence of degenerative pathological lesions and the advanced age-at-death of this individual make it the most ancient postcranial evidence of an aged individual in the human fossil record. Additional nonpathological SH lumbo-pelvic remains are consistent with previous hypotheses, suggesting a less-pronounced sagittal spinal curvature in Neandertals compared with Homo sapiens.

  3. Revising the archaeological record of the Upper Pleistocene Arctic Siberia: Human dispersal and adaptations in MIS 3 and 2

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    Pitulko, Vladimir; Pavlova, Elena; Nikolskiy, Pavel

    2017-06-01

    As the main external driver, environmental changes largely predetermine human population distribution, especially in the Arctic, where environmental conditions were often too extreme for human survival. Not that long ago the only evidence of human presence here was the Berelekh site in the lower reaches of the Indighirka River. This landmark dates to 13,000-12,000 years ago but it was widely accepted as documentation of the earliest stage of human dispersal in the Arctic. New research discussed here, shows that humans began colonizing the Siberian Arctic at least by the end of the early stage of MIS 3 at around 45,000 years ago. For now, this earliest known stage of human occupation in the arctic regions is documented by the evidence of human hunting. The archaeological record of continued human occupation is fragmentary; nevertheless, evidence exists for each significant phase including the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). Siberian Arctic human populations were likely supported by the local mammoth population, which provided humans with food and raw material in the form of mammoth tusks. Processing of mammoth ivory is recognized widely as one of the most important peculiarities of the material culture of ancient humans. In fact, ivory tool manufacturing is one of the most important innovations of the Upper Palaeolithic in northern Eurasia. Technology that allowed manufacturing of long ivory shafts - long points and full-size spears - was critical in the tree-less open landscapes of Eurasian mammoth steppe belt. These technological skills reach their greatest extent and development shortly before the Last Glacial Maximum but are recognizable until the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary across Northern Eurasia in all areas populated by mammoths and humans. Loss of this stable source of raw material due to the late Pleistocene mammoth extinction may have provoked a shift in post-LGM Siberia to the Beringian microblade tradition. This paper reviews the most important

  4. Chronological overlap between humans and megafauna in Sahul (Pleistocene Australia New Guinea): A review of the evidence

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    Field, Judith; Fillios, Melanie; Wroe, Stephen

    2008-08-01

    Over 60 faunal species disappeared from the Australian continent during the Middle-Late Pleistocene. Most of these animals were large to gigantic marsupials, birds and reptiles. A terminal extinction date of 46.4 kyr has been proposed for the megafauna, with all sites containing younger fossil megafauna dismissed by some researchers because of questions over stratigraphic integrity or chronologies. The timing of the extinctions is argued to be broadly coincident with estimates of first colonization of the continent by modern humans, and explanatory extinction models involving humans have subsequently gained currency. However there is considerable evidence to suggest that in some parts of the continent, people and some species of megafauna may have co-existed well beyond 46.4 kyr. In other places, such as Tasmania and the north of the continent, there is no known record of a human-megafauna temporal overlap. A review of the available evidence indicates that only 13 species of megafauna were extant on human arrival in Australia. The archaeology of this period in