Working Group on the Middle/Late Pleistocene Boundary

Co-convenor: Professor Thomas Litt (Bonn, Germany)
Co-convenor: Dr Jan Zalasiewicz

Professor Art Bettis (Iowa, USA)
Dr. Aleid Bosch (Utrecht, The Netherlands)
Professor Philip Gibbard (Cambridge, England)
Professor Liu Jiaqi (Beijing, China)
Professor Peter Kershaw (Clayton, Australia)
Professor Wighart von Koenigswald (Bonn, Germany)
Professor Jerry McManus (Wood’s Hole, USA)
Dr. Charles Turner (Milton Keynes, UK)
Professor Martin Head (Brock University, Canada)
Dr Alessandra Negri (Universita’ Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy)

Bonn October 2005: Charles Turner, Phil Gibbard, Thomas Litt, Art Bettis, Aleid Bosch

Tim Partridge, Peter Kershaw, Phil Gibbard, Charles Turner, Andrey Dodonov Photographs by Andrey Dodonov.

Definition of the Middle–Upper Pleistocene boundary

P. L. Gibbard
Godwin Institute of Quaternary Research, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3EN, UK

Received 2 February 2000; accepted 23 February 2002. ; Available online 7 January 2003

Global and Planetary Change
Volume 36, Issue 3 , 1 April 2003, Pages 201-208

The definition of a Middle–Upper Pleistocene Subseries boundary is discussed. This boundary is at present not formally defined, but has up till now been placed at the beginning of the Last Interglacial (Eemian, Mikulino, Sangamonian, etc.) or Marine Isotope Stage 5. Although it may seem attractive to define the boundary in an ocean sediment sequence, the inherent imprecision of most of such sequences, resulting from slow sedimentation rate, combined with the effects of bioturbation, suggests that for high-resolution stratigraphical purposes they are generally unsuitable for the definition of `golden spike’-type, `time–plane’ boundaries. It is therefore proposed that the Saalian–Eemian stage boundary, and thus the Middle–Upper Pleistocene Subseries boundary-stratotype be defined from a terrestrial locality at -63.5 m below surface in the Amsterdam-Terminal borehole, The Netherlands. This parastratotype locality is also to be proposed as the Eemian Stage unit-stratotype. Author Keywords: Pleistocene; Last Interglacial; Eemian

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