Der besondere Umwelt- und Klimacharakter der spätmittelpleistozänen Warmzeit von Neumark Nord (Geiseltal)


  • Dietrich Mania
  • Dieter Hans Mai
  • Maria Seifert-Eulen
  • Matthias Thomae
  • Manfred Altermann


Mania, D.; Mai, D. H.; Seifert-Eulen, M.; Thomae, M.; Altermann, M.: The special environmental
and climatic character of the Late Middle Pleistocene interglacial of Neumark Nord (Geisel valley). –
Hercynia N. F. 43 (2010): 203 –256.
The geological sequence deriving from the open-cut mine of Neumark Nord allows to ascribe the interglacial
sediments to the Saale complex. The 15-m-thick, limnic and telmatic sediments of a fossil
lake are located on the ground moraine of the Saale glaciation (Drenthian, Saale I) and are covered by a
periglacial sequence with the loess of the Warthian (Saale II, III). Overlying are a soil complex (Eemian
and Early Weichselian) and the periglacial sequence with the loess of the Weichselian. The palynological
investigation yields the Pleistocene basic succession of the vegetation. A fossil flora of fruits and
seeds containing about 200 species originates from the interglacial maximum. They give evidence for
the development of Quercetalia pubescentis with dry woods of the Aceri tatarici-Quercion. Steppes
coexist with them (Festico-Brometea, Astragalo-Stipion). A great number of the species presently occupy
Southern Siberian, West-Asian and East-European as well as Pontic regions. They prove the strong
subcontinental influence on vegetation and climate of this interglacial. Forest and steppe associations
appropriate for comparisons presently occur in the Pannonia lowland and the southern Russian steppes.
Accordingly, the interglacial climate of Neumark Nord exhibits 2–3 °C higher temperatures, dry, hot
summers and low precipitations. Summer and early autumn were characterised by dry periods of 3 – 3 ½
months. Very intensive dry periods could be determined in the interglacial maximum. Three times, they
led to the regression of the lake and three times to its intensive eutrophia. The gastropod fauna confirms
and supports the results of the palaeobotanic investigation. The subcontinental interglacial of Neumark
Nord led to environmental and climatic conditions that are unknown in this extense in the Middle and
Late Pleistocene of Central Europe.
Key words: interglacial, region of river Saale, subcontinental climate, Quercetalia pubescentis, Aceri
tatarici-Quercion, species-rich flora and fauna