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Calcite Rafts as a Proxy for Reconstructing Holocene Surface Water Conditions of Hoyo Negro: A Phreatic Coastal Karst Basin in Quintana Roo, Mexico

Author(s): Shawn Kovacs ; Dominique Rissolo ; Eduard Reinhardt

Year: 2015

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Summary

Located in the Sac Actun cave system on the eastern coast of the Yucatán Peninsula, Hoyo Negro pit (HN) has proven to be a very important pre-Maya archeological site as human (Naia, dated between approx. 13 000 - 12 000 calendar years ago) and faunal remains have been discovered (Chatters et al., 2014). Reconstructing the flooding history (accessibly when the cave system was dry) and water chemistry of HN is critical to our understanding of the movement of humans and fauna into and through the cave over time. To accomplish this, cores of calcite raft piles from the upper cave passage connecting HN to Ich Balam Cenote (IB) and the base of the HN pit were analyzed for stable isotope composition (δ13C, δ18O and 87Sr/86Sr) and trace element concentration. This study identifies the long-term paleohydrochemical conditions in IB and HN while comparing/contrasting independent climate records within the circum-Caribbean region. Furthermore, this will represent an innovative proxy that will reconstruct surface groundwater salinity and its potability during the Holocene.

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Calcite Rafts as a Proxy for Reconstructing Holocene Surface Water Conditions of Hoyo Negro: A Phreatic Coastal Karst Basin in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Shawn Kovacs, Eduard Reinhardt, Dominique Rissolo. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 396533)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: -90.747; min lat: 3.25 ; max long: -48.999; max lat: 27.683 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America