Late Pleistocene – Holocene environmental changes – records from submerged speleothems along the Eastern Adriatic coast (Croatia)

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Maša Surić
Mladen Juračić

Abstract

U-Th and 14C dating, and X-ray diffraction of the parts of 16 submerged speleothems taken from the depths of 1.5−41.5 m from 7 submarine caves and pits along the Eastern Adriatic coast, provided insight to the sea-level fluctuations during the last 220 ka and to the palaeogeographic changes caused by sea-level changes. Due to the climate changes, palaeoenvironmental settings also varied, but not so abrupt and intensive as in the rest of Europe. Namely, owing to the Alps and Dinarides acting as orographic barriers, Eastern Adriatic coast was the border region between periglacial Europe and temperate Mediterranean region. It was, also, refuge area for plant species from the north. This study showed that appropriate temperature, humidity and vegetation cover ensured favourable conditions for karstification and speleothems formation processes even during Last Glacial Maximum.

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Original Scientific Papers