Reconstructing low levels of Lake Lisan by correlating fan-delta and lacustrine deposits

Malka Machlus, Yehouda Enzel, Steven L. Goldstein, Shmuel Marco, Mordechai Stein*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


Reconstruction of paleo-shorelines of Lake Lisan, the late Pleistocene precursor of the Dead Sea, is based on sequence stratigraphy of fan-delta and lacustrine deposits that are exposed at the Perazim Valley, southwest of the Dead Sea. The shoreline sediments are physically correlated with lacustrine aragonites, their ages are determined by U-series dating, to establish a lake-level curve for the time interval between 55 and 35 kyr. During most of this period, Lake Lisan was at a relatively low level, which fluctuated between 280 and 290 m below sea level (m bsl). The minimum lake stand (~ 330 m bsl) was reached at 47 kyr and lasted for 3-4 kyr. This episode is marked by a depositional hiatus in the section, and formation of an erosional channel. The studied period correlates with the global marine isotope stage 3. The low stand of Lake Lisan during most of this period indicates relative dry climatic conditions in the region. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd and INQUA. All rights reserved.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)137-144
Number of pages8
JournalQuaternary International
StatePublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Galit Kadan, Revital Ken-Tor, Eldad Barzilay, and Yuval Bartov for help in fieldwork and sharing ideas and lake curves. Miri Shmida, Tamar Sofer of the Cartography Laboratory (Hebrew University), and Vered Shatil drafted the figures. The manuscript was significantly improved by the comments of D. Bowman and T.L. Ku. This study was supported by the Israel Science Foundation Grant # 504.99 to Y. Enzel and M. Stein and # 694.95 to A. Agnon and M. Stein. This is a contribution to the European Lake Drilling Programme (ELDP).


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