On March 21st, Jorge Valdés, visiting researcher from the University of Antofagasta (Chile), presented in the IX edition of the Café con Sal conference series, his ongoing work «Climate variability and fishing resources in the Humboldt system: A look into the past from sedimentary record».
Oxygen-poor ocean environments with high sedimentation rates and primary productivity preserve information on ocean-climatic variations in the past. Humboldt’s current system is an good example of this event since a large population of pelagic fish (mainly sardines and anchovies) are home to it, preserved in background sediments, and can be used as indicators of environmental changes in the past.
During his lecture, Jorge Valdés presented the fluctuations observed in the sardines and anchovies during the last millennium in the Mejillones bay (23ºS, N Chile), relating the successive cycles of increase and decrease of these species with temperature cycles, subsuperficial oxygen, primary productivity and other ocean-climatic variables as the interdecadal variability associated with the phenomenon «El Niño».
The results presented are part of the work developed in the International Mixed Laboratory (LMI) under the PALEOTRACES project, in which the Research Institute for the Developpement (France), the Federal University Fluminense (Brazil), the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (Peru) and the University of Antofagasta (Chile). Moreover, genetic analysis will be performed in the ReXenMar laboratory by our group leader Dr. Pablo Presa.