Analysis of terrestrial gastropods that underlie the late Pleistocene Two Creeks forest bed (~ 13,800–13,500 cal yr BP) in eastern Wisconsin, USA provides evidence for a mixed tundra-taiga environment prior to formation of the taiga forest bed. Ten new AMS 14C analyses on terrestrial gastropod shells indicate the mixed tundra-taiga environment persisted from ~ 14,500 to 13,900 cal yr BP. The Twocreekan climatic substage, representing ice-free conditions on the shore of Lake Michigan, therefore began near the onset of peak warming conditions during the Bølling–Allerød interstadial and lasted ~ 1000 yr, nearly 600 yr longer than previously thought. These results provide important data for understanding the response of continental ice sheets to global climate forcing and demonstrate the potential of using terrestrial gastropod fossils for both environmental reconstruction and age control in late Quaternary sediments.
Additional publication details
Radiocarbon ages of terrestrial gastropods extend duration of ice-free conditions at the Two Creeks forest bed, Wisconsin, USA