Paper No. 120-1
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM
RECONSTRUCTING SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES IN THE CARIBBEAN DURING THE HOLOCENE FROM A REEF EXPOSURE IN CAÑADA HONDA, ENRIQUILLO VALLEY, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
The Holocene provides an extensive history of climate variations, with deglaciation, sea level rise and a Holocene climate optimum (˜6,000 yr. BP). However, how these climatic variations affected the Caribbean is still not well understood. The Enriquillo Valley in the Dominican Republic provides exceptional preservation of Holocene fossil corals that store approximately 4,000 years of climatic history of the region. This study presents SST values derived from δ18O obtained from six fossil Montastraea sp. corals collected at Cañada Honda, Enriquillo Valley. The corals are part of a mixed coral zone that developed at depths of 15-25 m and dated back to approximately 6,000 – 5,000 yr. BP. The δ18O-SST calculated ranged from 22.7-31.0°C, with an overall mean temperature of 26.7°C. Sr/Ca- SST values will be produced and compared to the δ18O-SST obtained since significant salinity variations were present (and still are) in the area during the formation of the corals. Growth rates in Montastraea sp. were also obtained using Coral XDS by measuring the extension and luminance of growth bands. A mean growth rate of 3.16 ± 0.52 mm/yr. (n=267) was obtained.