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

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Blain, Hugues Alexandre y Bailon, Salvador y Cuenca Bescós, Gloria y Arsuaga, Juan Luis y Bermúdez de Castro, José María y Carbonell i Roura, Eudald (2009) Long-term climate record inferred from early-middle Pleistocene amphibian and squamate reptile assemblages at the Gran Dolina Cave, Atapuerca, Spain. Journal of Human Evolution, 56 . pp. 55-65. ISSN 0047-2484

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URL Oficial: http://www.journals.elsevier.com/journal-of-human-evolution/



Resumen

The Gran Dolina cave site is famous for having delivered some of the oldest hominin remains of Western
Europe (Homo antecessor, ca. 960 ka). Moreover, the evidence of lithic industries throughout the long
vertical section suggests occupation on the part of hominins from the latest early Pleistocene (levels
TD3/4, TD5, and TD6) to the late middle Pleistocene (level TD10). The Gran Dolina Sondeo Sur (TDS) has
furnished a great number of small-vertebrate remains; among them some 40,000 bones are attributed to
amphibians and squamates. Although they do not differ specifically from the extant herpetofauna of the
Iberian Peninsula, the overlap of their current distribution areas (¼ mutual climatic range method) in
Spain can provide mean annual temperatures (MAT), the mean temperatures of the coldest (MTC) and
warmest (MTW) months, and mean annual precipitation (MAP) estimations for each sub-level, and their
change can be studied throughout the sequence. Results from the squamate and amphibian study
indicate that during hominin occupation the MAT (10–13 ºC) was always slightly warmer than at present
in the vicinity of the Gran Dolina Cave, and the MAP (800–1000 mm) was greater than today in the
Burgos area. Climatic differences between ‘‘glacial’’ and ‘‘interglacial’’ phases are poorly marked. Summer
temperatures (MTW) show stronger oscillations than winter temperatures (MTC), but seasonality
remains almost unchanged throughout the sequence. These results are compared with those for large
mammals, small mammals, and pollen analysis, giving a scenario for the palaeoclimatic conditions that
occurred during the early to middle Pleistocene in Atapuerca, and hence a scenario for the hominins that
once lived in the Sierra de Atapuerca.


Tipo de documento:Artículo
Palabras clave:Temperature, Rainfall, Seasonality, Quantitative analysis, Herpetofauna
Materias:Ciencias > Geología > Paleontología
Código ID:26877
Depositado:30 Sep 2014 12:21
Última Modificación:11 Dic 2018 08:42

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