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Department of Geography

Staff Profile

Publication details for Professor Mike Bentley

Bentley, M.J., Hodgson, D.A., Smith, J.A. & Cox, N.J. Relative sea level curves for the South Shetland Islands and Marguerite Bay, Antarctic Peninsula. Quaternary Science Reviews. 2005;24:1203-1216.

Author(s) from Durham


This paper presents preliminary relative sea level curves for the Marguerite Bay region and for the South Shetland Islands. The Marguerite Bay curve is constrained by both new and previously published 14C dates on penguin remains and shells, and on two isolation basins dating back to 6500 14C yr BP. Extrapolation back to the marine limit yields a minimum deglaciation date for Marguerite Bay of ca 9000 14C yr BP. Analysis of beach clasts suggests that there was a period of increased wave activity, perhaps related to a reduction in summer sea-ice extent, between ca 3500 and ca 2400 14C yr BP. The curve for the South Shetland Islands is derived entirely from published 14C dates from isolation basins and on whalebone, penguin bone and seal bone. The curve shows an initial relative sea level fall, which was interrupted by a period in the mid-Holocene when relative sea level rose to a highstand of between 14.5 and 16 m above mean sea level (amsl), before falling again.


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