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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-38
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 11 Apr 2018

Research article | 11 Apr 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of this manuscript was accepted for the journal Climate of the Past (CP) and is expected to appear here in due course.

The last interglacial (MIS 5e) cycle at Little Bahama Bank: A history of climate and sea-level changes

Anastasia Zhuravleva1 and Henning A. Bauch2 Anastasia Zhuravleva and Henning A. Bauch
  • 1Academy of Sciences, Humanities and Literature, Mainz , c/o GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research, Wischhofstrasse 1–3, 24148 Kiel, Germany
  • 2Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research c/o GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research, Wischhofstrasse 1–3, 24148 Kiel, Germany

Abstract. Shallow-water sediments of the Bahama region containing the last interglacial (MIS 5e) are ideal to investigate the region's sensitivity to past climatic and sea level changes. Here we present new faunal, isotopic and XRF-sediment core data from the northern slope of the Little Bahama Bank. The results suggest that the bank top remained flooded across the last interglacial plateau, ~129–117ka, arguing for a relative sea level above −6m for this time period. In addition, climatic variability, which today is closely coupled with movements of the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), is interpreted based on stable isotopes and foraminiferal assemblage records. During early MIS 5e, the mean annual ITCZ position moved northward in line with increased solar forcing and a recovered Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). The early MIS 5e warmth peak was intersected, however, by a millennial-scale cooling event, consistent with a southward shift in the mean annual ITCZ position. This tropical shift is ascribed to the transitional climatic regime of early MIS 5e, characterized by persistent high-latitude freshening and, thereby, unstable AMOC mode. Our records from the Bahama region demonstrate that not only was there a tight relation between local sedimentation regimes and last interglacial sea level history, via the atmospheric forcing we could further infer an intra-interglacial connectivity between the polar and subtropical latitudes that left its imprint also on the ocean circulation.

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Anastasia Zhuravleva and Henning A. Bauch
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Anastasia Zhuravleva and Henning A. Bauch
Anastasia Zhuravleva and Henning A. Bauch
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Using foraminiferal assemblages, isotopic and XRF-sediment core data from the Bahama region we reconstruct climatic and sea level changes during the last interglacial. We discuss mechanisms (insolation vs. oceanic and/or atmospheric forcings) regulating subtropical climate. Our data further suggest a climatic coupling between high and low-latitudes.
Using foraminiferal assemblages, isotopic and XRF-sediment core data from the Bahama region we...
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