ABSTRACT: Quantitative analyses on over 2300 samples were carried ut on late Quaternary calcareous nannofossil assemblages from a central Mediterranean Sea sedimentary sequence (ODP Site 963A). Our results indicate that Emiliania huxleyi dominated the assemblages between 0 and 45.7 kyr BP; Gephyrocapsa muellerae between 45.7 and 177.3 kyr BP; small Gephyrocapsa between 177.3 and 263.5 kyr BP; Gephyrocapsa caribbeanica from 263.5 kyr BP down to the basal sample of our investigation, at about 430 kyr BP A comparison with similar reports from Atlantic Ocean sites indicates that the boundaries of the acme intervals identified in this study fall within the same Marine Isotopic Stages as the Atlantic Ocean sites, and their ages are strongly comparable The very high-resolution biostratigraphic framework obtained suggests that Mediterranean regional schemes might be improved using such an approach.


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