Summer air temperature, reconstructions from the last glacial stage based on rodents from the site Taillis-des-Coteaux (Vienne), Western France. - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Quaternary Research Year : 2014

Summer air temperature, reconstructions from the last glacial stage based on rodents from the site Taillis-des-Coteaux (Vienne), Western France.

Abstract

The oxygen isotope composition of phosphate from tooth enamel of rodents (δ18Op) constitutes a valuable proxy to reconstruct past air temperatures in continental environments. This method has been applied to rodent dental remains from three genera, Arvicola sp., Microtus sp. and Dicrostonyx sp., coming from Taillis-des-Coteaux, Vienne, France. This archaeological site contains an exceptionally preserved sedimentary sequence spanning almost the whole Upper Palaeolithic, including seven stratigraphic layers dated from 35 to 17 cal ka BP. The abundant presence of rodent remains offers the opportunity to quantify the climatic fluctuations coeval of the various stages of human occupation of the site. Differences between δ18Op values of Arvicola sp. and Microtus sp. teeth are interpreted as the result of heterochrony in tooth formation as well as differences in ecology. Mean δ18Op values of Microtus sp. are preferentially used to reconstruct summer air temperatures, which range from 16.0 ± 3.7 to 19.1 ± 3.1°C throughout the sedimentary sequence; however, the highest variability is observed during the last glacial maximum.
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hal-01066399 , version 1 (19-09-2014)

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Aurélien Royer, Christophe Lécuyer, Sophie Montuire, Jérôme Primault, François Fourel, et al.. Summer air temperature, reconstructions from the last glacial stage based on rodents from the site Taillis-des-Coteaux (Vienne), Western France.. Quaternary Research, 2014, 82 (2), pp.420-429. ⟨10.1016/j.yqres.2014.06.006⟩. ⟨hal-01066399⟩
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