Hostname: page-component-6b989bf9dc-pmhlf Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-04-12T13:37:46.479Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Paleoecology of mangroves along the Sibun River, Belize

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Natalie M. Monacci
Affiliation:
Institute of Marine Science, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, O'Neil Building, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775 USA Alaska Stable Isotope Facility, Water and Environmental Research Center, Duckering Building, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775 USA
Ursula Meier-Grünhagen
Affiliation:
Department of Natural Sciences, Lower Saxony Institute for Historical Coastal Research, Victoria Road 26-28, 26382 Wilhelmshaven, Germany Department of Palynology and Climate Dynamics, Albrecht-von-Haller-Institute for Plant Sciences, University of Göttingen, Untere Karspüle 2, 37073 Göttingen, Germany
Bruce P. Finney
Affiliation:
Department of Biological Sciences and Geosciences, Idaho State University, Gale Life Sciences Building, Pocatello, ID 83209 USA
Hermann Behling
Affiliation:
Department of Palynology and Climate Dynamics, Albrecht-von-Haller-Institute for Plant Sciences, University of Göttingen, Untere Karspüle 2, 37073 Göttingen, Germany
Matthew J. Wooller*
Affiliation:
Institute of Marine Science, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, O'Neil Building, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775 USA Alaska Stable Isotope Facility, Water and Environmental Research Center, Duckering Building, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775 USA
*
Corresponding author at: Institute of Marine Science, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, O'Neil Building, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775 USA. E-mail address:mjwooller@alaska.edu (M.J. Wooller).

Abstract

This study examines a sediment core (SR-63) from a mangrove ecosystem along the Sibun River in Belize, which is subject to both changes in sea-level and in the characteristics of the river's drainage basin. Radiocarbon dates from the core show a decreased sedimentation rate from ~ 6 ka to 1 cal ka BP and a marked change in lithology from primarily mangrove peat to fluvial-derived material at ~ 2.5 cal ka BP. Changes in the sedimentation rates observed in mangrove ecosystems offshore have previously been attributed to changes in relative sea-level and the rate of sea-level rise. Pollen analyses show a decreased abundance of Rhizophora (red mangrove) pollen and an increased abundance of Avicennia (black mangrove) pollen and non-mangrove pollen coeval with the decreased sedimentation rates. Elemental ratios ([N:C]a) and stable isotope analyses (δ15N and δ13C) show that changes in the composition of the organic material are also coeval with the change in lithology. The decrease in sedimentation rate at the site of core SR-63 and at offshore sites supports the idea that regional changes in hydrology occurred during the Holocene in Belize, influencing both mainland and offshore mangrove ecosystems.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
University of Washington

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Achee, N.L., Grieco, J.P., Masuoka, P., Andre, R.G., Roberts, D.R., Thomas, J., Briceno, I., King, R., and Rejmankova, E. Use of remote sensing and geographic information systems to predict locations of Anopheles darlingi-positive breeding sites within the Sibun River in Belize, central America. Journal of Medical Entomology 43, 2 (2006). 382392.Google Scholar
Alongi, D.M. Present state and future of the world's mangrove forests. Environmental Conservation 29, (2002). 331349.Google Scholar
Angulo, R.J., and Lessa, G.C. The Brazilian sea-level curves: a critical review with emphasis on the curves from the Paranagua and Cananeia regions. Marine Geology 140, 1–2 (1997). 141166.Google Scholar
Behling, H., and da Costa, M.L. Holocene vegetational and coastal environmental changes from the Lago Crispim record in northeastern Para State, eastern Amazonia. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 114, 3–4 (2001). 145155.Google Scholar
Behling, H., Cohen, M.C.L., and Lara, R.J. Studies on Holocene mangrove ecosystem dynamics of the Braganca Peninsula in north-eastern Para, Brazil. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 167, 3–4 (2001). 225242.Google Scholar
BERDS Biodiversity and Environmental Resource Data System of Belize. http://www.biodiversity.bz (2007). Accessed October 2007 Google Scholar
Bhattacharya, T., Beach, T., and Wahl, D. An analysis of modern pollen rain from the Maya lowlands of northern Belize. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 164, (2011). 109120.Google Scholar
Binford, M.W., Brenner, M., Whitmore, T.J., Higueragundy, A., Deevey, E.S., and Leyden, B. Ecosystems, paleoecology and human disturbance in subtropical and tropical America. Quaternary Science Reviews 6, (1987). 115128.Google Scholar
Bird, M.I., Fifield, L.K., Chua, S., and Goh, B. Calculating sediment compaction for radiocarbon dating of intertidal sediments. Radiocarbon 46, 1 (2004). 421435.Google Scholar
Blanchon, P. Comments on “Corrected western Atlantic sea-level curve for the last 11,000 years based on calibrated C-14 dates from Acropora palmata framework and intertidal mangrove peat” by Toscano and Macintyre. Coral Reefs 24, 2 (2005). 183186.Google Scholar
Curtis, J.H., Hodell, D.A., and Brenner, M. Climate variability on the Yucatan Peninsula (Mexico) during the past 3500 years, and implications for Maya Cultural Evolution. Quaternary Research 46, 1 (1996). 3747.Google Scholar
Curtis, J.H., Brenner, M., Hodell, D.A., Balser, R.A., Islebe, G.A., and Hooghiemstra, H. A multi-proxy study of Holocene environmental change in the Maya lowlands of Peten, Guatemala. Journal of Paleolimnology 19, 2 (1998). 139159.Google Scholar
Danielsen, F., Sorensen, M.K., Olwig, M.F., Selvam, V., Parish, F., Burgess, N.D., Hiraishi, T., Karunagaran, V.M., Rasmussen, M.S., Hansen, L.B., Quarto, A., and Suryadiputra, N. The Asian tsunami: a protective role for coastal vegetation. Science 310, 5748 (2005). 643 Google Scholar
Dean, W.E. Determination of carbonate and organic matter in calcareous sediments and sedimentary rocks by loss on ignition: comparison with other methods. Journal of Sedimentary Petrology 44, 1 (1974). 242248.Google Scholar
Faegri, K., and Iverson, J. Textbook of Pollen Analysis. 4th edn. (1989). Wiley, New York.Google Scholar
Fairbanks, R.G. A 17,000-year glacio-eustatic sea-level record — influence of glacial melting rates on the Younger Dryas event and deep-ocean circulation. Nature 342, (1989). 637642.Google Scholar
Gischler, E. Holocene lagoonal development in the isolated carbonate platforms off Belize. Sedimentary Geology 159, (2003). 113132.Google Scholar
Gischler, E., (2006). Comment on “Corrected western Atlantic sea-level curve for the last 11,000 years based on calibrated C-14 dates from Acropora palmata framework and intertidal mangrove peat” by Toscano and Macintyre. Coral Reefs 22, 257270. (2003). and their response in Coral Reefs 24, 187190. (2005). Coral Reefs 25, (2), 273279.Google Scholar
Gischler, E., and Hudson, J.H. Holocene development of three isolated carbonate platforms, Belize, Central America. Marine Geology 144, 4 (1998). 333347.Google Scholar
Goñi, M.A., Teixeira, M.J., and Perkey, D.W. Sources and distribution of organic matter in a river-dominated estuary (Winyah Bay, SC, USA). Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science 57, 5–6 (2003). 10231048.Google Scholar
Goñi, M.A., Monacci, N., Gisewhite, R., Ogston, A., Crockett, J., and Nittrouer, C. Distribution and sources of particulate organic matter in the water column and sediments of the Fly River Delta, Gulf of Papua (Papua New Guinea). Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science 69, 1–2 (2006). 225245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Grimm, E. TILIA and TGView, 2.0.2. (2004). Illinois State Museum, Springfield.Google Scholar
Haug, G.H., Hughen, K.A., Sigman, D.M., Peterson, L.C., and Rohl, U. Southward migration of the intertropical convergence zone through the Holocene. Science 293, 5533 (2001). 13041308.Google Scholar
Hedges, J.I., Clark, W.A., Quay, P.D., Richey, J.E., Devol, A.H., and Santos, U.M. Compositions and fluxes of particulate organic material in the Amazon River. Limnology and Oceanography 31, 4 (1986). 717738.Google Scholar
Heiri, O., Lotter, A.F., and Lemcke, G. Loss on ignition as a method for estimating organic and carbonate content in sediments: reproducibility and comparability of results. Journal of Paleolimnology 25, 1 (2001). 101110.Google Scholar
Higuera-Gundy, A., Brenner, M., Hodell, D.A., Curtis, J.H., Leyden, B.W., and Binford, M.W. A 10,300 C-14 yr record of climate and vegetation change from Haiti. Quaternary Research 52, (1999). 159170.Google Scholar
Hodell, D.A., Curtis, J.H., and Brenner, M. Possible role of climate in the collapse of Classic Maya civilization. Nature 375, 6530 (1995). 391394.Google Scholar
Hodell, D.A., Brenner, M., Curtis, J.H., and Guilderson, T. Solar forcing of drought frequency in the Maya lowlands. Science 292, (2001). 13671370.Google Scholar
Hodell, D.A., Brenner, M., and Curtis, J.H. Climate and cultural history of the northeastern Yucatan Peninsula, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Climatic Change 83, 1–2 (2007). 215240.Google Scholar
Jacob, J.S., and Hallmark, C.T. Holocene stratigraphy of Cobweb Swamp, a Maya wetland in northern Belize. Geological Society of America Bulletin 108, 7 (1996). 883891.Google Scholar
Kathiresan, K., and Rajendran, N. Coastal mangrove forests mitigated tsunami. Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science 65, 3 (2005). 601606.Google Scholar
Kjerfve, B., Ruetzler, K., and Kierspe, G.H. Tides at Carrie Bow Cay, Belize. Ruetzler, K., Macintyre, I.G. Smithsonian Contributions to the Marine Sciences 12, (1982). Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington. 539 Google Scholar
Lalli, C.M., and Parsons, T.R. Biological Oceanography: an Introduction. 2nd ed. (1993). Elsevier, Oxford. 314 Google Scholar
Leyden, B.W. Late Quaternary aridity in the Lake Valencia Basin (Venezuela) — reply. Ecology 68, 5 (1987). 15531555.Google Scholar
Leyden, B.W., Brenner, M., Hodell, D.A., and Curtis, J.H. Orbital and internal forcing of climate on the Yucatan Peninsula for the past ca.36-ka. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 109, (1994). 193210.Google Scholar
Lighty, R.G., Macintyre, I.G., and Stuckenrath, R. Submerged early Holocene barrier reef south-east Florida shelf. Nature 275, (1978). 5960.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Meerman, J., and Sabido, W. Central American ecosystems map: Belize, Volume II: ecosystem map and descriptions. Programme for Belize, Belize City. (2001). Google Scholar
Monacci, N.M., Meier-Grünhagen, U., Finney, B.P., Behling, H., and Wooller, M.J. Mangrove ecosystem changes during the Holocene at Spanish Lookout Cay, Belize. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, and Palaeoecology 280, (2009). 3746.Google Scholar
Mueller, A.D., Islebe, G.A., Hillesheim, M.B., Grzesik, D.A., Anselmetti, F.S., Ariztegui, D., Brenner, M., Curtis, J.H., Hodell, D.A., and Venz, K.A. Climate drying and associated forest decline in the lowlands of northern Guetemala during the late Holocene. Quaternary Research 71, (2009). 133141.Google Scholar
Murray, M.R., Zisman, S.A., Furley, P.A., Munro, D.M., Gibson, J., Ratter, J., Bridgewater, S., Minty, C.D., and Place, C.J. The mangroves of Belize Part 1. Distribution, composition and classification. Forest Ecology and Management 174, 1–3 (2003). 265279.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Palacios-Chavez, R., Ludlow-Wiechers, B., and Villanueva, R. Flora Palinologica de la Reserva de la Biosfera de Sian Ka'an, Quintana Roo, Mexico. 1st edn (1991). CIQRO, Chetumal.Google Scholar
Piaskowski, V.D., Teul, M., Williams, K.M., and Cal, R.N. Birds of the Sibun riverine forest, Belize. Ornitologia Neotropical 17, 3 (2006). 333352.Google Scholar
Polk, J.S., van Beynen, P.E., and Reeder, P.P. Late Holocene environmental reconstruction using cave sediments from Belize. Quaternary Research 68, 1 (2007). 5363.Google Scholar
Reimer, P.J., Baillie, M.G.L., Bard, E., Bayliss, A., Beck, J.W., Bertrand, C.J.H., Blackwell, P.G., Buck, C.E., Burr, G.S., Cutler, K.B., Damon, P.E., Edwards, R.L., Fairbanks, R.G., Friedrich, M., Guilderson, T.P., Hogg, A.G., Hughen, K.A., Kromer, B., McCormac, G., Manning, S., Ramsey, C.B., Reimer, R.W., Remmele, S., Southon, J.R., Stuiver, M., Talamo, S., Taylor, F.W., van der Plicht, J., and Weyhenmeyer, C.E. IntCal04 terrestrial radiocarbon age calibration, 0–26 cal kyr BP. Radiocarbon 46, 3 (2004). 10291058.Google Scholar
Sobrado, M.A. Relation of water transport to leaf gas exchange properties in three mangrove species. Trees 14, (2000). 258262.Google Scholar
Toscano, M.A., and Macintyre, I.G. Corrected western Atlantic sea-level curve for the last 11,000 years based on calibrated C-14 dates from Acropora palmata framework and intertidal mangrove peat. Coral Reefs 22, 3 (2003). 257270.Google Scholar
Traverse, A. Paleopalynology (1988). Unwin Hyman, Boston. 600 Google Scholar
Vannucci, M. What is so special about mangroves?. Brazilian Journal of Biology 61, 4 (2001). 599603.Google Scholar
Vedel, V., Behling, H., Cohen, M., and Lara, R. Holocene mangrove dynamics and sea-level changes in northern Brazil, inferences from the Taperebal core in northeastern Para State. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 15, (2006). 115123.Google Scholar
Wahl, D., Byrne, R., Schreiner, T., and Hansen, R. Holocene vegetation change in the northern Peten and its implications for Maya prehistory. Quaternary Research 65, 3 (2006). 380389.Google Scholar
Woodroffe, C.D. Mangroves and sedimentation in reef environments: indicators of past sea-level changes, and present sea-level trends. Proceedings of the Sixth International Coral Reef Congress 3, (1988). 535539.Google Scholar
Wooller, M.J., Behling, H., Smallwood, B.J., and Fogel, M. Mangrove ecosystem dynamics and elemental cycling at Twin Cays, Belize, during the Holocene. Journal of Quaternary Science 19, 7 (2004). 703711.Google Scholar
Wooller, M.J., Morgan, R., Fowell, S.J., Behling, H., and Fogel, M. A multi-proxy peat record of Holocene mangrove paleoecology from Twin Cays, Belize. The Holocene 17, 8 (2007). 11291139.Google Scholar
Wooller, M.J., Behling, H., Guerrero, J.L., Jantz, N., and Zweigert, M.E. Late Holocene hydrologic and vegetation changes at Turneffe Atoll, Belize, compared with records from mainland Central America and Mexico. Palaios 24, 9–10 (2009). 650656.Google Scholar