Studia Quaternaria
Volume 21 (2002)


Palaeoenvironmental changes in the area of the Szczecin Lagoon (the south western Baltic Sea) as recorded from diatoms


Andrzej Witkowski, Małgorzata Latałowa, Ryszard K. Borówka, Patrycja Gregorowicz, Małgorzata Bąk, Andrzej Osadczuk, Joanna Święta, Monika Lutyńska, Brygida Wawrzyniak-Wydrowska, Robert Woziński


Analyses of diatom assemblages were performed in sediment cores from the Szczecin Lagoon area, as a part of a multidisciplinary research including seismoacoustic profiling and different types of palaeoecological and geological analyses: palynological, macrofossil, malacological, lithological, geochemical and sedimentological. Changes in the composition of a large spectrum of species of the local fauna and flora allowed the reconstruction of environmental conditions during the Late Glacial and Holocene in the Szczecin Lagoon. Succession of the diatom communities is the main topic of the present paper. In the Late Glacial sediments, the diatom flora was scarce and occurred only in core 42/99. In other cores, diatom assemblages characteristic for three phases of the Holocene development (limnic-swampy, marine/brackish-water and lagoonary) of the Szczecin Lagoon were distinguished. The Late Glacial (Older-Dryas (?), Allerød and Younger Dryas) record is incomplete and the flora is predominantly represented by Actinocyclus normanii, Aulacoseira spp, Cocconeis placentula, and Fragilaria brevistriata. The oldest Holocene sediments of the limnic-swampy type, are characterised by freshwater and halophilous diatoms (e.g. Fragilaria brevistriata, Cocconeis placentula and Stephanodiscus hantzschii). In the overlying marine sediments, only occasionally brackish-water taxa (e.g. Planothidium delicatulum, Cocconeis hauniensis) were observed. In the uppermost deposits formed in lagoonary conditions freshwater, halophilous and brackish-water species dominated (e.g. Aulacoseira granulata, Cavinula scutelloides and Epithemia turgida).



Editor-in-Chief: Tomasz Goslar
Co-Editors: Małgorzata Latałowa
Wojciech Stankowski
Krystyna Szeroczyńska
Mariusz Lamentowicz