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Organic geochemical and foraminiferal MAT data for mid- to late-Holocene sediments of the Gulf of Cadiz and Alboran Sea

By Julien Schirrmacher, Mara Weinelt, Thomas Blanz, Nils Andersen, Emilia Salgueiro and Ralph R Schneider


To assess the regional multi-decadal to multi-centennial climate variability at the southern Iberian Peninsula during the mid- to late- Holocene transition multi-proxy records of two marine sediment cores were established for two sites in the Alboran Sea (ODP-161-976A) and the Gulf of Cadiz (GeoB5901-2). High-resolution records of organic geochemical proxies and planktic foraminiferal assemblages are used to decipher precipitation and vegetation changes as well as the sea surface conditions with respect to Sea Surface Temperature (SST) and marine primary productivity (MPP). n-Alkane records as a proxy for precipitation changes suggest a series of six distinct drought events at 5.4 ka BP, from ca. 5.1 ka BP to 4.9 ka BP, from 4.8 to 4.7 ka BP, at 4.6  ka BP, from 4.4 to 4.3 ka BP and, from 3.8 to 3.7 ka BP. Each drought event is associated with a major vegetation change towards higher proportions of C4 vegetation. The drought events are further accompanied by annual and spring/ winter SST warming as well as decreasing MPP in the Alboran Sea. Altogether, the close correlation of the observed droughts with North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO)-like variability suggests changes in the atmospheric circulation as important driving mechanism of terrestrial and oceanic variability at southern Iberia and the Alboran Sea, respectively. Sea surface variability in the Gulf of Cadiz, instead, is intimately linked to the North Atlantic Bond Events. In particular, during Bond Events 3 and 4 a pronounced increase in seasonality is found

Topics: Alboran Sea; alkenones; annual; Foraminifera; Gulf of Cadiz; Iberia; n-alkanes; Ocean Drilling Program; ODP; precipitation; Sea surface temperature; summer; Vegetation; winter
Publisher: PANGAEA
Year: 2019
DOI identifier: 10.1594/PANGAEA.899720
OAI identifier:
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