The responses of community assemblages of planktonic and benthonic foraminifera and coccolithophorids to transient climate change are explored for the uppermost 2 m of cores ODP677B (1.2°N; 83.74°W, 3461 m) and TR163-38 (1.34°S; 81.58°W, 2200 m), for the last ∼ 40 ka. Results suggest that the deglaciation interval was a time of increased productivity and a major reorganization of planktonic trophic webs. The succession in dominance between the planktonic foraminifera species Globorotalia inflata, Globigerina bulloides, and Neogloboquadrina pachyderma denote four periods of oceanographic change: (1) advection (24-20 ka), (2) strong upwelling (20-15 ka), (3) weak upwelling (14-8 ka) and (4) oligotrophy (8 ka to present). Strong upwelling for the deglaciation interval is supported by the low Florisphaera profunda/other coccolithophorids ratio and the high percentage abundance of Gephyrocapsa oceanica. Benthonic foraminifera assemblage changes are different in both cores and suggest significant regional variations in surface productivity and/or oxygen content at the seafloor, and a decoupling between surface productivity and export production to the seafloor. This decoupling is evidenced by the inverse relationship between the percentage abundance of infaunal benthonic foraminifera and the percentage abundance of N. pachyderma. The terrigenous input of the Colombian Pacific rivers, particularly the San Juan River, is suggested as a possible mechanism. Finally, the Globorotalia cultrata/Neogloboquadrina dutertrei ratio is used to reconstruct the past influence of the Costa Rica Dome-Panama Bight and cold tongue upwelling systems in the Panama Basin. A northern influence is suggested for the late Holocene (after 5 ka) and the last glacial (before 20 ka), whereas a southern influence is suggested for the 20-5 ka interval. There is a correspondence between our reconstructed northern and southern influences and previously proposed positions of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM).
- Eastern Equatorial Pacific
- Panama Basin