Holocene paleohydrological reconstruction of Lake Strzeszyńskie (western Poland) and its implications for the central European climatic transition zone

Research paper by Krzysztof Pleskot, Rik Tjallingii, Mirosław Makohonienko, Norbert Nowaczyk, Witold Szczuciński

Indexed on: 30 Oct '17Published on: 05 Oct '17Published in: Journal of Paleolimnology


Western Poland is located in the central European climatic transition zone, which separates the mild and humid Atlantic climate of Western Europe and the East European continental climate. This region is sensitive to lateral shifts of the European climate zones and is particularly suitable for reconstructing Holocene climate variability. This paper presents detailed analyses of the sedimentary record from Lake Strzeszyńskie since the Late Pleistocene. These include smear-slide and thin-section observations, X-ray fluorescence core scanning, magnetic susceptibility measurements, pollen analyses, and radiocarbon dating. The sediment record reveals three distinct sedimentary units consisting of: (1) an alternation of sand layers and laminated silt and clay deposits accumulated prior to 14,600 cal yr BP; (2) faintly laminated calcareous sediments intercalated with organic matter-rich layers deposited between 14,600 and 10,200 cal yr BP; and (3) massive calcareous mud deposited after 10,200 cal yr BP. The Holocene period is marked by nine phases of organic-rich sedimentation and enhanced Fe deposition, which occurred at ca. 10.1, 9.3, 6.4–6.1, 5.5–5.1, 4.7–4.5, 2.7–2.4, 1.3–1.2, 0.8–0.6, 0.4–0.2 kyr cal BP. These phases are associated with high lake levels and correspond with wet periods recognized in several other records from Poland and central Europe. These phases partly coincide with North Atlantic cold periods, which may suggest that high lake levels are triggered by an ocean-continent linking mechanism.