New stratigraphically constrained palaeoenvironmental reconstructions for the first human settlement in Western Europe : The Early Pleistocene herpetofaunal assemblages from Barranco Leon and Fuente Nueva 3 (Granada, SE Spain)

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Sanchez-Bandera , C , Oms , O , Blain , H-A , Lozano-Fernandez , I , Bispal-Chinesta , J , Agusti , J , Saarinen , J , Fortelius , M , Titton , S , Serrano-Ramos , A , Luzon , C , Solano-Garcia , J , Barsky , D & Manuel Jimenez-Arenas , J 2020 , ' New stratigraphically constrained palaeoenvironmental reconstructions for the first human settlement in Western Europe : The Early Pleistocene herpetofaunal assemblages from Barranco Leon and Fuente Nueva 3 (Granada, SE Spain) ' , Quaternary Science Reviews , vol. 243 , no. 106466 , 106466 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2020.106466

Title: New stratigraphically constrained palaeoenvironmental reconstructions for the first human settlement in Western Europe : The Early Pleistocene herpetofaunal assemblages from Barranco Leon and Fuente Nueva 3 (Granada, SE Spain)
Author: Sanchez-Bandera, Christian; Oms, Oriol; Blain, Hugues-Alexandre; Lozano-Fernandez, Ivan; Bispal-Chinesta, Josep; Agusti, Jordi; Saarinen, Juha; Fortelius, Mikael; Titton, Stefania; Serrano-Ramos, Alexia; Luzon, Carmen; Solano-Garcia, Jose; Barsky, Deborah; Manuel Jimenez-Arenas, Juan
Contributor organization: Department of Geosciences and Geography
Doctoral Programme in Geosciences
Finnish Museum of Natural History
Evolutionary Palaeontology group
Date: 2020-09-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 16
Belongs to series: Quaternary Science Reviews
ISSN: 0277-3791
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2020.106466
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/346452
Abstract: The Early Pleistocene sites of Barranco Leon and Fuente Nueva 3 (Guadix-Baza Basin, SE Spain) have yielded abundant Oldowan lithic artifacts and one hominin tooth (Homo sp. in level D1 or D2 of Barranco Leon), today considered to be among the earliest evidence for a hominin presence in Western Europe, at ca. 1.4-1.2 Ma. Here, for the first time, the stratigraphic succession of these two sites are studied more precisely from a palaeoenvironmental point of view, taking into account the different levels of the depositional sequences to analyze the successive fossil assemblages of amphibians and reptiles. Palaeoenvironmental reconstructions are carried out by applying the "habitat weighting" method, which uses the modern distribution by habitat of amphibian and reptile species in order to interpret past landscapes. The successive herpetofaunal assemblages from Barranco Leon show a certain tendency towards more arid conditions from level D1 to level E, whereas in Fuente Nueva 3 environmental reconstructions reveal oscillating conditions, with a tendency towards more arid conditions in the basal part of the sequence, up to level 5, where the tendency shifts back to more humid conditions. Our results show that the layers included in this study with the highest density of anthropic evidence (such as level 5 in FN 3 and levels D1 and D2 in BL) are situated within the late Early Pleistocene climatic and environmental cyclicity, yielding different environmental conditions: a humid, wooded biotope for BL, and a more open and drier biotope in FN 3. This suggests that the hominins of the late Early Pleistocene, although conditioned to some extent by climatic factors, were able to cope with changing environmental conditions, both "interglacial" and "glacial", in the southwestern extremity of the European continent. (C) 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Subject: First human settlement in Europe
Early Pleistocene
Amphibia
Squamata
Habitat weighting
Iberian Peninsula
GUADIX-BAZA BASIN
HUMAN OCCUPATION
ORCE REGION
SITE
PLIOPLEISTOCENE
BIOSTRATIGRAPHY
ANDALUSIA
ATAPUERCA
SOUTHEAST
PATTERNS
1171 Geosciences
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by_nc_nd
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion


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