Middle-late Holocene climate and hydrologic changes in the Gulf of Saros (NE Aegean Sea)


Bozyigit C., Eriş K. K. , Sicre M., Çağatay M. N. , Uçarkuş G. , Klein V., ...More

MARINE GEOLOGY, vol.443, 2022 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 443
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.margeo.2021.106688
  • Title of Journal : MARINE GEOLOGY
  • Keywords: North Aegean Sea, Gulf of Saros, Marine sediment core, Geochemical proxies, Paleoclimate, Sapropels, NORTH ANATOLIAN FAULT, MEDITERRANEAN SEA, INTERANNUAL VARIABILITY, SAPROPEL FORMATION, MARINE-SEDIMENTS, WATER FORMATION, ORGANIC-MATTER, SOREQ CAVE, LAKE VAN, EASTERN

Abstract

A multi-proxy analyses was applied on the sediment core from the Gulf of Saros (GoS) to identify and characterize climate and hydrological changes during the middle-to-late Holocene. The formation of two discrete Holocene sapropel layers in the GoS sediments was documented for the first time in the sediment core based on total organic carbon analysis. According to our paleo-proxy records, the lower Holocene sapropel was deposited under warm and humid climate conditions that gave rise to high delivery of terrestrial organic matter by numerous rivers in the northern catchment of the GoS. Biomarker and mu-XRF data were used to decipher climate variations during the middle to late Holocene. The general trends of sea-surface temperature records from the GoS and Sea of Marmara (SoM) at the beginning of late Holocene are in good agreement, underlying the influence of the Black Sea inflow. A relatively warm and wet climate together with a high sedimentation rate during the mid-Holocene Climatic Optimum resulted in high organic productivity and ensuing formation of the younger Holocene sapropel between 5.4 and 3.0 cal ka BP. Late Holocene European climate periods are evident in the Saros core records. The Roman Humid Period is represented by high variation in climate, indicating an earlier (2.5-2.3 cal ka BP) dry and a later (2.3-1.55 cal ka BP) wet periods. The abrupt return to drier condition during the Dark Ages Cold Period (1.6-1.3 cal ka BP) was followed by a wetter Medieval Climate Anomaly (1.1-0.7 cal ka BP). The paleo-proxy record of the core indicates a passage from a wetter to drier climate during the cold Little Ice Age period (730-110 cal yr BP), and highlights the influence of deforestation in the catchment of the GoS as a result of human activities during the last three centuries.