|Keywords||climate change, Menyanthes trifoliata, stratigraphy, temperature|
|Abstract||1 Climatic models predict that postglacial conditions in the Pacific Northwest of North America (between 11’000 and 10’000 years BP) were about 2–3 ?C cooler than at present. These models were tested by examining plant macrofossils and insect remains in a late Pleistocene peat deposit in northwestern Oregon. 2 Stratigraphy in trenches (540 cm depth) revealed peat from 225 to 420 cm soil depth. The peat structure suggests that an open water body formed at the site some 13’000 years BP and terrestrialized into a Sphagnum bog. Seeds of the bog bean, Menyanthes trifoliata, were found in the peat between 240 and 420 cm depth. The age of this layer was 14C-dated to approximately 10’000–11’000 years BP. 3 Temperatures at present-day sites of M. trifoliata in Oregon (at elevations from 854 to 1768 m a.s.l.) indicate that the species grows at sites with a yearly mean temperature range of 4.4–7.9 ?C, in contrast to 11.1 ?C at the study site (49 m a.s.l.), where the species does no longer occur. This suggests that temperatures at the study site in the late Pleistocene were at least 3–4 ?C cooler than at present. 4 The possible association of these temperature changes to the universal Young Dryas cooling and post-Young Dryas warming event is discussed. 5 The discovery of three small flakes, a core, and fractured deer-size large mammal bones in the peat suggests the presence of Paleoamericans in the surroundings. Sharp breakage edges on many seeds of M. trifoliata might indicate that these seeds were used by humans, possibly because the latter knew about the medicinal properties of M. trifoliata.|
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|Name||Affiliation||Home page||Total pubs|
|Bonnichsen R||Department of Anthropology, Texas A & M University, College Station, Texas 77843, USA||1|
|Hedlund C||1150 Northwest 36 Street, Corvallis, OR 97330, USA||1|
|Poinar GO||1 Department of Entomology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA||1|
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