Lateglacial and Holocene palaeoenvironments at Sierra La Madera, northwestern Mexico: Sharp signals of Younger Dryas and North American monsoon

Carlos Alberto Galaz-Samaniego, M. Cristina Peñalba*, Francisco Abraham Paz-Moreno, Iván Rosario Espinoza-Encinas, Kinardo Flores-Castro, Rogelio Monreal, Carlos Lizárraga-Celaya

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

During the last glacial termination, the climate system experienced intense global variations whose causes and impacts are not fully defined, particularly for low latitudes. The northwestern Mexico Sky Islands present a climate-sensitive ideal setting to record palaeoecological and palaeoclimatic changes due to their physiographic complexity and location in the ecotone between temperate and tropical ecosystems. High-resolution pollen analysis and a detailed sedimentological study were conducted at the Ciénega Tonibabi tropical thorn scrub site. The 15 540–0 cal a bp nearly continuous record shows that the North Atlantic Ocean did have a cold and humid climatic influence during the glacial stages of the end of the Pleistocene, including a sharp pulse during the Younger Dryas. However, a shift to the Pacific Ocean influence occurred during the Holocene, which led to the development of the El Niño conditions prevailing today. Colder and warmer phases follow one another with higher or lower winter precipitation, including a sharp Bølling–Allerød and development and intensification of the North American monsoon. They are reflected in hydrological changes as well as in the advances, retreats and intermingling of coniferous forests and tropical thorn scrub.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-91
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Quaternary Science
Volume38
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Keywords

  • Holocene
  • hydrology
  • last glacial termination
  • palaeoclimate
  • pollen

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