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Dr. William Martin Brocas



Marine Geology



MARUM I, Raum 1340

William Martin Brocas

PhD project

Monthly resolved coral records of the last interglacial climate variability from southern Caribbean corals

This project is funded by the DFG under the special priority projects of INTERDYNAMIK. Its primary focus is to resolve ultra-high resolution proxy records for the last interglacial period (130-118kaBP). This period is the focus of study due to the availability of well-preserved fossil coral material, and provides a test bed period that can be studied as partially analogous to climatic condition likely to be experienced in the future. Proxy records for sea surface temperature (Sr/Ca) and hydrography (δ18O) are being generated from fossil coral material (D. strigosa) collected from reef terraces uplifted and exposed above sea level from the south Caribbean island of Bonaire. The coral materials collected here are extremely rare and yield unique proxy records from a tropical climate perspective. These proxy data will span various time windows across the last interglacial period revealing the interannual to decadal variability of influential climatic systems in the region.

The behaviour of such systems as the inter-tropical convergence zone (rain belt) and the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) are poorly understood during previous climate states, especially at the high resolution intended by this project.

The data obtained from this project will be complimentary to modelling analysis and will be directly comparable with similar work conducted for the present interglacial. In this way we intended to contribute to the climate change debate which has focused on climate variability at latitudes much higher than the Caribbean.


W.M. Brocas, D.J. Reynolds, P.G. Butlera, C.A. Richardson, J.D. Scourse, I.D. Ridgway, K. Ramsay. (2013)
The dog cockle, Glycymeris glycymeris (L.), a new annually-resolved sclerochronological archive for the Irish Sea.

Obert, J. C., D. Scholz, T. Felis, W. M. Brocas, K. P. Jochum, and M. O. Andreae (2016)
230Th/U dating of Last Interglacial brain corals from Bonaire (southern Caribbean) using bulk and theca wall material.