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Diatom assemblages from the middle part of the Pliocene (3.2-2.5 Ma) were investigated from Ocean Drilling Program Sites 1016, 1021, and 1022 in an effort to infer paleotemperature fluctuations off California. Diatoms are very sparse in virtually all of the samples that were examined from Sites 1016 and 1021. This is presumably because these sites were seaward (west) of the coastal zone of diatom productivity during the middle part of the Pliocene. Diatoms are relatively common in the vast majority of samples that were examined from Hole 1022A. Diatom assemblages are dominated by Chaetoceros spores (a coastal upwelling component), the cold-water (subarctic) taxa Neodenticula kamtschatica and its descendant Neodenticula koizumii, and Thalassionema nitzschioides, a temperature taxon that is typically found at the seaward edge of coastal upwelling zones. Paleotemperature interpretations, however, are not possible at this time because of the scarcity of comparative modern core-top data.
Additional Publication Details
Data report: Mid-Pliocene diatom assemblages at sites 1016, 1021, and 1022
Proceedings of the Ocean Drilling Program: Scientific Results