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A late Quaternary chironomid-inferred temperature record from the Sierra Nevada, California, with connections to northeast Pacific sea surface temperatures

  • Aaron P. Potito (a1), David F. Porinchu (a1), Glen M. MacDonald (a2) and Katrina A. Moser (a3)

Chironomid remains from a mid-elevation lake in the Sierra Nevada, California, were used to estimate quantitative summer surface water temperatures during the past ∼15,000 yr. Reconstructed temperatures increased by ∼3°C between lake initiation and the onset of the Holocene at ∼10,600 cal yr BP (calibrated years before present). Temperatures peaked at 6500 cal yr BP, displayed high variability from 6500 to 3500 cal yr BP, and stabilized after 3500 cal yr BP. This record generally tracks reconstructed Santa Barbara Basin sea surface temperatures (SSTs) through much of the Holocene, highlighting the correspondence between SST variability and California land temperatures during this interval.

Corresponding author
Corresponding author. Department of Geography, University of Ireland Galway, University Road, Galway, Ireland. Fax: +1 614 292 6213. E-mail addresses:, (A.P. Potito).
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Quaternary Research
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