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1 April 2013 Evidence of Recent Warming in the Okinawa Region, Subtropical Northwestern Pacific, from an Oxygen Isotope Record of a Cave-Dwelling Marine Micro-Bivalve
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Abstract

The aragonitic micro-bivalve Carditella iejimensis, which is less than 3.5 mm in height and length, inhabits the sediment surface in a submarine cave off the Okinawa Islands, Japan. To evaluate the use of this species as a quantitative paleoceanographic proxy, we analyzed the δ18O values of 50 living C. iejimensis specimens collected from the Daidokutsu submarine cave (ca. 30 m water depth). Results show that most individuals (96%) preserve δ18O values corresponding to the mean annual temperature and δ18O of seawater. The mean δ18Oshell of the 50 specimens was -1.10 ± 0.18‰. These results, when applied to fossil shell δ18O records from Daidokutsu cave, indicate that its mean annual surface water temperature is about 1°C higher than temperatures during the Medieval Warm Period and the Middle Holocene Climatic Optimum, and that the recent warming is likely exceptional during the past 7000 years.

© by the Palaeontological Society of Japan
Akihisa Kitamura, Konatsu Kobayashi, Chikako Tamaki, Nagisa Yamamoto, Tomohisa Irino, Yosuke Miyairi, and Yusuke Yokoyama "Evidence of Recent Warming in the Okinawa Region, Subtropical Northwestern Pacific, from an Oxygen Isotope Record of a Cave-Dwelling Marine Micro-Bivalve," Paleontological Research 17(1), (1 April 2013). https://doi.org/10.2517/1342-8144-17.1.58
Received: 3 June 2012; Accepted: 1 August 2012; Published: 1 April 2013
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