Skip to main content

Abrupt Climatic Changes during the Last Glaciation Based on Pollen Analysis of the Abric Romani, Catalonia, Spain

  • Francesc Burjachs (a1) and Ramon Julià (a1)

The Abric Romani continental pollen record provides evidence of abrupt climate variations during the last glaciation. The pollen record reveals a pattern of high-frequency variations similar to that in ice cores as shown by oxygen isotopes or dust content. Analyses of 14 travertine samples yield coherent U-series ages in correct stratigraphic order, ranging from 40,000 to 70,000 yr. According to changes in the composition and structure of the vegetation, five paleoclimatic phases have been differentiated; the oldest, ranging from 70,200 to 65,500 yr ago, records thermophilous taxa which correspond to the last warm events of isotopic stage 5. The next phase, from 65,500 to 56,800 yr, records a cold, humid climate that correlates with isotope stage 4. During the third phase, from 56,800 to 49,500 yr, relatively warm and cold events alternate. The fourth phase, from 49,500 to 46,200 yr, records a cold, dry climate. The fifth phase, ranging from 46,200 to 40,800 yr, records a milder phase that is similar in appearance to the beginning of the Holocene.

Hide All
Bard E. Arnold M. Maurice P. Duprat J. Moyes J., and Duplessy J. C. (1987). Retreat velocity of the North Atlantic polar front during the last deglaciation determined by 14C accelerator mass spectrometry. Nature 328, 791794.
Beaulieu J.L. de and Reille M. (1973). L’interpretation does spectres polliniques de p£riodes froides: A propos du Cedre au Quatemaire en Europe. In “Le Quatemaire” (A.A.V.V.), pp. 198199. CNRS, Paris.
Beaulieu J. L. de and Reille M. (1984). A long upper Pleistocene pollen record from Les Echets, near Lyon, France. Boreas 13(2), 111132.
Beaulieu J. L. de and Reille M. (1992). The last climatic cycle at La Grande Pile (Vosges, France). A new pollen profile. Quaternary Science Reviews 11, 431438.
Behre K. E., and Lade U. (1986). Eine Folge von Eem and 4 Weichsel-Interstadialen in Oerel/Niedersachsen und ihr Vegetationsablauf. Eiszeitalter und Gegenwart 36, 1136.
Behre K. E. (1989). Biostratigraphy of the last glacial period in Europe. Quaternary Science Reviews 8, 2544.
Bernard J. (1972). Analyse pollinique d’une sequence marine wiirmienne provenam de Mediterranee occidentale. Comptes Rendus de I’ Academie des Sciences, Paris 274(D), 11511154.
Beug H. J. (1975). Man as a factor in the vegetational history of the Balkan peninsula. In “Problems of Balkan Flora and Vegetation” (A.A.V.V.), pp. 7278. Proceedings of the 1st International Symposium on Balkan Flora and Vegetation, Varna, 1973.
Bischoff J. L. Julia R., and Mora R. (1988). Uranium-series dating of the Mousterian occupation at Abric Romani, Spain. Nature 332, 6870.
Buijachs F. (1991). “Palinologia dels d61mens de I’Alt Emporda i dels diposits quatemaris de la Cova de L’Arbreda (Serinya, Pla de l’Estany) i del Pla de 1’Estany (Olot, Garrotxa). Evolucid del paisatge vegetal i del clima des de fa m£s de 140,000 anys al N.E. de la Peninsula Ib6rica.” Univ. Autdnoma of Barcelona Press, Barcelona. [Microfilm]
Buijachs F. (in press). The palynology of the upper Pleistocene and Holocene of the North-East Iberian Peninsula: Pla de VEstany (Catalonia). Biological History.
CLIMAP (1984). The last Interglacial Ocean. Quaternary Research 21(2), 123224.
Cour P. (1974). Nouvelles techniques de detection des flux et des retomb£es polliniques: £tude de la sedimentation des pollens et des spores a la surface du sol. Pollen et spores XVI(1), 103141.
Dansgaard W. Johnsen S. J. Clausen H. B. Dahl-Jensen D. Gundestrup N. Hammer C. U., and Oeschger H. (1982). North Atlantic climatic oscillations revealed by deep Greenland ice cores. American Geophysical Union, Geophysical Monograph 29, 288298.
Dansgaard W. Johnsen S. J. Clausen H. B. Dahl-Jensen D. Gundestrup N. S. Hammer C. U. Hvidberg C. S. StefTensen J. P. Svelnbjomsdottir A. E. Jouzel J., and Bond G. (1993). Evidence for general instability of past climate from 250-yr ice-core record. Nature 364, 218220.
Denton G. H., and Karlen W. (1973). Holocene climatic variations— Their pattern and possible cause. Quaternary Research 3, 155205.
Dupre M. (1988). “Palinologia y Palcoambientc. Nucvos datos esparioles. Referencias.” Serie de Trabajos Varios, Vol. 84. Diputacitf Provincial de Valencia, Valencia, Spain.
Fairbanks R. G. (1990). The age and origin of the “Younger Dryas climate event” in Greenland ice cores. Paleoceanography 5(6), 937948.
Florschutz F. Menendez-Amor J., and Wijmstra T. A. (1971). Palynology of a thick Quaternary succession in southern Spain. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 10(4), 233264.
Follieri M. Magri D., and Sadori L. (1986). Late Pleistocene Zelkovaextinction in Central Italy. New Phytologist 103, 269273.
Follieri M. Magri D., and Sadori L. (1988). 250,000-year pollen record from Valle di Castiglione (Roma). Pollen et Spores XXX(3-4), 329356.
Garcia-Anton M. Morla-Juaristi C., and Sainz-Ollero H. (1990). Consideraciones sobre la presencia de algunos vegetales relictos terciarios durante el Cuatemario en la Peninsula Iberica. Boletin de la Real Sociedad Espanola de Historia Natural (Seccion Biolog(a) 86(1-4), 95105.
Goeury CL, and Beaulieu J. L. de (1979). A propos de la concentration du pollen A l’aide de la liqueur de Thoulet dans les sediments mineraux. Pollen et Spores XXI(1-2), 239251.
Grimm E. E. Jacobson G. L. Watts W. A. Hansen B. C. S., and Maasch K. A. (1993). A 50,000-Year Record of Climatic Oscillations from Florida and its Temporal Correlation with the Heinrich Events. Science 261, 198200.
GRIP (Greenland Ice-core Project Members) (1993). Climate instability during the Last Interglacial period recorded in the GRIP ice core. Nature 364, 203207.
Grootes P. M. (1977). “Thermal Diffusion Isotopic Enrichment and Radiocarbon Dating beyond 50,000 Years B.P.” Rijksiiniversiteit. Groningen.
Grousset F. E. Labeyrie L. Sinko J. A. Cremer M. Bond G. Duprat J. Cortijo E., and Huon S. (1993). Patterns of ice-rafted detritus in the glacial North Atlantic (40-55° N). Paleoceanography 8(2), 175192.
Kolstrup E., and Wijmstra T. A. (1977). A palynological investigation of the Moershoofd, Hengelo, and Denekamp interstadials in the Netherlands. Geologie en Mijnbouw 56, 85102.
Manuera M., and Carri6n J. S. (1991). Palinologia de un deposito arqueol6gico en el Sureste Iberico semiarido: Cueva del Algarrobo (Mazarr6n, Murcia). Cuatemario y Geomorfologia 5, 107118.
Pateme M. Guichard F. Labeyrie J. Gillot P. Y., and Duplessy J. C. (1986). Tyrrhenian sea tephrochronology of the oxygen isotope record for the past 60,000 years. Marine Geology 72, 259285.
Pons A., and Reille M. (1988). The Holocene and Upper Pleistocene pollen record from Padul (Granada, Spain): A new study. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 66, 243263.
Pons A. Beaulieu J. L. de Guiot J., and Reille M. (1990). Vingt-cinq ans de recherche en analyse pollinique. Ecologia Mediterranea XVI, 169193.
Pons A. Guiot J. Beaulieu J. L. de, and Reille M. (1992). Recent contributions to the climatology of the last glacial-interglacial cycle based on french pollen sequences. Quaternary Science Reviews 11, 439448.
Ralska-Jasiewiczowa M. Van Geel B. Goslar T., and Kuc T. (1992). The record of the Late Glacial-Holocene transition in the varved sediments of the lake Gosciaz, central Poland. Sveriges Geologiska Undersokning 81, 257268.
Reille M., and Beaulieu J. L. de (1990). Pollen analysis of a long upper Pleistocene continental sequence in a Velay maar (Massif Central, France). Paiaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 80, 3548.
Renault-Miskovsky J. Bui-Thi-Mai M., and Girard M. (1984). A propos de l’indigenat ou de Pintroduction du Juglans et Platanus dans 1’ouest de 1’Europe au Quaternaire. Paleobiologie vol. special, 155178.
Rossignol-Strick M., and Planchais N. (1989). Climate patterns revealed by pollen and oxygen isotope records of a Tyrrhenian sea core. Nature 342, 413415.
SSnchez-Goni M. F. (1988). A propos de la presence du pollen de Caslanea et de Juglans dans les sediments archdologiques wiirmiens anciens du Pays Basque espagnol. Travaux de \a Section Scientifique et Technique XXV, 7382.
Vandenberghe J. (1985). Paleoenvironment and stratigraphy during the Last Glacial in the Belgian-Dutch border region. Quaternary Research 24, 2338.
Wijmstra T. A. (1969). Palynology of the first 30 metres of a 120 tn deep section in southern Greece. Acta Botanica Neerlandica 18(4), 511527.
Woillard G. (1978). Grande Pile peat bog: A continuous pollen record for the last 140,000 years. Quaternary Research 9(1-2), 121.
Woillard G. (1979). The last interglacial-glacial cycle at Grande Pile in northeastern France. Bulletin de la Societe Beige de Geologie 88(1), 5169.
Woillard G., and Mook W. C. (1982). Carbon-14 Dates at Grande Pile. Correlation of land and sea chronologies. Science 218, 159161.
Zagwijn W. H. (1992). Migration of vegetation during the Quaternary in Europe. Courier Forsch-Institul Senckenberg 153, 920.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Quaternary Research
  • ISSN: 0033-5894
  • EISSN: 1096-0287
  • URL: /core/journals/quaternary-research
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 1 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 53 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 20th January 2017 - 18th January 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.