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The Ziegler Reservoir fossil site near Snowmass Village, Colorado (USA), provides a unique opportunity to reconstruct high-altitude paleoenvironmental conditions in the Rocky Mountains during the Last Interglacial Period. We used four different techniques to establish a chronological framework for the site. Radiocarbon dating of lake organics, bone collagen, and shell carbonate, and in situ cosmogenic 10Be and 26Al ages on a boulder on the crest of a moraine that impounded the lake suggest that the ages of the sediments that hosted the fossils are between ~140 ka and >45 ka. Uranium-series ages of vertebrate remains generally fall within these bounds, but extremely low uranium concentrations and evidence of open-system behavior limit their utility. Optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages (n = 18) obtained from fine-grained quartz maintain stratigraphic order, were replicable, and provide reliable ages for the lake sediments. Analysis of the equivalent dose (DE) dispersion of the OSL samples showed that the sediments were fully bleached prior to deposition and low scatter suggests that eolian processes were likely the dominant transport mechanism for fine-grained sediments into the lake. The resulting ages show that the fossil-bearing sediments span the latest part of Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 6, all of MIS 5 and MIS 4, and the earliest part of MIS 3.
In North America, terrestrial records of biodiversity and climate change that span Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 are rare. Where found, they provide insight into how the coupling of the ocean–atmosphere system is manifested in biotic and environmental records and how the biosphere responds to climate change. In 2010–2011, construction at Ziegler Reservoir near Snowmass Village, Colorado (USA) revealed a nearly continuous, lacustrine/wetland sedimentary sequence that preserved evidence of past plant communities between ~140 and 55 ka, including all of MIS 5. At an elevation of 2705 m, the Ziegler Reservoir fossil site also contained thousands of well-preserved bones of late Pleistocene megafauna, including mastodons, mammoths, ground sloths, horses, camels, deer, bison, black bear, coyotes, and bighorn sheep. In addition, the site contained more than 26,000 bones from at least 30 species of small animals including salamanders, otters, muskrats, minks, rabbits, beavers, frogs, lizards, snakes, fish, and birds. The combination of macro- and micro-vertebrates, invertebrates, terrestrial and aquatic plant macrofossils, a detailed pollen record, and a robust, directly dated stratigraphic framework shows that high-elevation ecosystems in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado are climatically sensitive and varied dramatically throughout MIS 5.
Luminescence dating provides a direct age estimate of the time of last exposure of quartz or feldspar minerals to light or heat and has been successfully applied to deposits, rock surfaces, and fired materials in a number of archaeological and geological settings. Sampling strategies are diverse and can be customized depending on local circumstances, although all sediment samples need to include a light-safe sample and material for dose-rate determination. The accuracy and precision of luminescence dating results are directly related to the type and quality of the material sampled and sample collection methods in the field. Selection of target material for dating should include considerations of adequacy of resetting of the luminescence signal (optical and thermal bleaching), the ability to characterize the radioactive environment surrounding the sample (dose rate), and the lack of evidence for post-depositional mixing (bioturbation in soils and sediment). Sample strategies for collection of samples from sedimentary settings and fired materials are discussed. This paper should be used as a guide for luminescence sampling and is meant to provide essential background information on how to properly collect samples and on the types of materials suitable for luminescence dating.
Joint hypermobility is overrepresented among people with anxiety and can be
associated with abnormal autonomic reactivity. We tested for associations
between regional cerebral grey matter and hypermobility in 72 healthy
volunteers using voxel-based morphometry of structural brain scans.
Strikingly, bilateral amygdala volume distinguished those with from those
without hypermobility. The hypermobility group scored higher for
interoceptive sensitivity yet were not significantly more anxious. Our
findings specifically link hypermobility to the structural integrity of a
brain centre implicated in normal and abnormal emotions and physiological
responses. Our observations endorse hypermobility as a multisystem phenotype
and suggest potential mechanisms mediating clinical vulnerability to
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