07 Mar 2023
 | 07 Mar 2023
Status: this preprint is open for discussion and under review for Climate of the Past (CP).

Mid-Holocene Climate Record in Santovka Travertine (Slovakia) and regional Biases of Climate Shifts 8.2 and 7.4 ka BP

Jan Petřík, Katarína Adameková, Sándor Kele, Rastislav Milovský, Libor Petr, Peter Tóth, and Nicholas McKay

Abstract. The study of freshwater carbonates, such as travertines and speleothems, provides valuable insights into the regional biases of mid-Holocene climate development in Central-Eastern (CE) and South-Eastern (SE) Europe. The formation of a lake in the travertine deposition system of the Santovka site, located at the transition of the Western Carpathians and the Pannonian Basin, has led to the preservation of a valuable record. We analyzed the litho- and microstratigraphy, chemical composition, including δ18O and δ13C stable isotopes, and geochronology of the Santovka-village section. We then compared these palaeoclimatic records with reference records from Central-Eastern and South-Eastern Europe in terms of significant climate shifts. The prevalent part of the section studied, which spans between 8200 and 6400 cal BP, is represented by fluvial/fluvio-lacustrine sediments and lake marl. The 8.2 ka BP event was only detected in the δ13C record from the nearby Santovka-PB section. However, we found an abrupt change in both isotopic records around 7400–7200 cal BP, which is likely connected to increased detrital input and some minor palaeoecological changes in the Santovka-village section. These changes are most likely associated with the drying of the lake. The 8.2 event in Central-Eastern (CE) and South-Eastern (SE) Europe is well reflected in the δ13C records, while the change in δ18O was insignificant. In contrast, the newly suggested climate shift around 7400–7000 ka BP was detected at most sites in both δ18O and δ13C records. This development could be connected to a change in air mass circulation, synchronous with declining solar irradiance and increased evidence of drift ice in the North Atlantic.

Jan Petřík et al.

Status: open (until 02 May 2023)

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Jan Petřík et al.

Data sets

Appendix Jan Petřík

Model code and software

Appendix Jan Petřík and Nichoals McKay

Jan Petřík et al.


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Short summary
Our analysis of the Santovka sedimentary record in Slovakia uncovered two major climate shifts at 8.2 and 7.4 ka BP. These shifts likely impacted temperature and humidity, and/or air mass circulation, and were caused by the drying of the lake at 7.4 ka BP. The sedimentary infill provides important information on the region's past climate, and future research must focus on its impact on the last hunter gatherers and first farmers in the context of spreading agriculture in Europe.