Late Quaternary Carbonate and Isotope Stratigraphy, Subantarctic Site 594, Southwest Pacific
Initial Reports of the Deep Sea Drilling Project, 90
The late Quaternary sequence off eastern South Island, New Zealand, consists of ~ 100 m of alternating bluish gray pelagic oozes and greenish gray hemipelagic oozes that extend uninterruptedly back to the Brunhes/Matuyama boundary (0.73 m.y.). A very high resolution (-2400 yr.) record of sediment texture, calcium carbonate content, and planktonic and benthic foraminiferal oxygen and carbon isotope composition demonstrates an in-phase cyclical fluctuation between the sedimentary parameters that
... ry parameters that closely correspond to the pelagic-hemipelagic sedimentation cycles and the isotope composition. Pelagic oozes, formed during interglacial periods of high eustatic sea level, are characterized by calcareous microfossils, relative enrichment in sand and clay sizes, high carbonate contents, reduced δ 18 θ values, and increased 6 13 C values. Hemipelagic oozes, associated with glacial episodes and lowered eustatic sea level, include common terrigenous material and siliceous microfossils, are enriched in silt sizes, have low carbonate contents, high δ 18 θ values, and low δ 13 values. The history of alpine glaciations and associated erosion of the South Island of New Zealand, as expressed by the appearance of hemipelagic oozes, can be correlated directly with the major fluctuations of Northern Hemisphere ice sheets as expressed by the influence of eustatic sea-level changes on the oxygen isotope composition of both planktonic and benthic foraminifers. This high-accumulation-rate record contains conspicuous intervals of highfrequency, high-amplitude isotope variability including the presence of multiple glacial/interglacial intervals within single isotope stages, and offers one of the best sections cored to date for detailed study of the evolution and history of climate change over the last 0.75 m.y.