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Robert P. Speijer

Robert P. Speijer
KU Leuven | ku leuven · Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

PhD (1994 - Utrecht University)

About

213
Publications
73,945
Reads
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Introduction
We study Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic climate, sea level and biosphere interactions - mass extinctions and biotic recoveries - quantitative micropaleontology - experimental taphonomy of foraminiferal assemblages - Cretaceous-Cenozoic stratigraphy. Missing a PAPER IN FULL here? Just send a request. As a POSTDOC you may be able to obtain a FWO or MARIE CURIE fellowship or coming from Germany you may be eligible for a FEODOR LYNEN fellowship and receive matching funding from KU Leuven.
Additional affiliations
May 1998 - September 2003
Universität Bremen
Position
  • Research Assistant
May 1997 - April 1998
Universität Bremen
Position
  • Humboldt Fellow
January 1995 - April 1997
University of Gothenburg
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
September 1981 - August 1988
Utrecht University
Field of study
  • Geology

Publications

Publications (213)
Article
Full-text available
During the Eocene greenhouse (56.0–33.9 Ma), northwest Europe was dominated by a semi-arid para-tropical climate but the paleohydrological conditions are poorly known. To gain more insight into seasonal hydrological conditions in the region, we compare Lutetian (middle Eocene, ~44-45 Ma) mollusk δ18O records from two shallow marine basins on either...
Article
Early Eocene climate is characterized by gradual warming toward the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). Environmental changes related to this global long-term warming trend are recorded in Ypresian marine sediments in Belgium. Test geochemistry of Nummulites enables the reconstruction of palaeotemperature changes, based on the Mg-incorporation in...
Article
The rise of Carnivora (Mammalia: Laurasiatheria) is an important evolutionary event that changed the structure of terrestrial ecosystems, starting at the dawn of the Eocene, 56 Mya. This radiation has been mainly analysed in North America, leaving the evolution of carnivoran diversity in other regions of the globe poorly known. To tackle this issue...
Article
Full-text available
The youngest time interval of the Cretaceous Period is known as the Maastrichtian, in reference to the shallow-marine strata outcropping in the area surrounding the city of Maastricht, in the Netherlands- Belgium border region. While the type-Maastrichtian strata have yielded a wealth of paleontological data, comparatively little geochemical work h...
Article
Full-text available
The Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) is recognized by a major negative carbon isotope (δ13C) excursion (CIE) signifying an injection of isotopically light carbon into exogenic reservoirs, the mass, source, and tempo of which continue to be debated. Evidence of a transient precursor carbon release(s) has been identified in a few localities, a...
Article
Full-text available
The mid-Maastrichtian carbon isotope event (MME), dated at~69 Ma, reflects a perturbation of the global carbon cycle that, in part, correlates with the enigmatic global extinction of 'true' (i.e., non-tegulated) inoceramid bivalves. The mechanisms of this extinction event are still debated. While both the inoceramid extirpation and MME have been re...
Poster
Full-text available
Abstract for the 2021 Theme Day organized by the Royal Academy for Overseas Sciences. This abstract is based on ongoing research.
Article
Full-text available
The Latest Danian Event (LDE, ~ 62.2 Ma) is characterized by global changes in the carbon cycle as indicated by two negative δ ¹³ C excursions of up to ~ 1‰. These δ ¹³ C shifts are accompanied by a 2–3 °C warming of both surface and deep waters based on benthic and planktic foraminiferal δ ¹⁸ O measurements, and the LDE has, thus, been considered...
Chapter
Full-text available
All Paleocene and Oligocene stages (Danian, Selandian, Thanetian, resp. Rupelian, and Chattian) have formally ratified definitions and so have the Ypresian, Lutetian, and Priabonian stages of the Eocene. We anticipate that the Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for the Bartonian Stage still requires more research before all stages...
Article
Full-text available
The Quercy Phosphorites Formation in France is world famous for its Eocene to Miocene faunas, especially those from the upper Eocene to lower Oligocene, the richest of all. The latter particularly helped to understand the ‘Grande Coupure’, a dramatic faunal turnover event that occurred in Europe during the Eocene-Oligocene transition. Fossils from...
Article
The Paleogene mammals of Europe are rarely known from partial or complete skeletons. As a result, their systematics and ecology are often solely based on dental characters and postcranial remains, when available, are usually neglected. This explains why the locomotion of mammals of the Eocene-Oligocene transition, the “Grande Coupure”, is poorly kn...
Article
Full-text available
Giant gastropods are among the largest mollusks in the fossil record, but their potential as paleoseasonality archives has received little attention. Here, we combine stable isotope and trace element analyses with microscopic observations and growth modeling on shells of two species of the gastropod genus Campanile: the extinct Campanile giganteum...
Article
The study of the global mass extinction event at the Cretaceous–Palaeogene (K/Pg) boundary can aid in understanding patterns of selective extinction, and survival and dynamics of ecosystem recovery. Outcrops in the Maastrichtian type area (south‐east Netherlands, north‐east Belgium) comprise a stratigraphically expanded K/Pg boundary succession tha...
Article
Full-text available
Phytoplankton responses to a ∼350 kyr (kiloyear) long phase of gradual late Maastrichtian (latest Cretaceous) global warming starting at ∼66.4 Ma can provide valuable insights into the long-term influences of global change on marine ecosystems. Here we perform micropaleontological analyses on three cores from the New Jersey paleoshelf to assess the...
Article
Full-text available
The early Eocene is characterized by sudden temperature peaks (hyperthermals), which are superimposed on a long term warming trend leading up to the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). Our research assesses the usability of larger benthic foraminifera (LBF, i.e. Nummulites) as a proxy for long-term temperature change towards the EECO, as recorded...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
It's nearly forty years ago that 'A Geologic Time Scale 1982' appeared (Harland et al. 1982); it was succeeded by major updates in 1989 (Harland et al. 1990), 2004 and 2012 (Gradstein et al. 2004, 2012-known as GTS2004 and GTS2012, respectively). The primary rationale was "to show as clearly as we can how such a scale has been constructed" (Harland...
Article
Full-text available
Phytoplankton responses to a ~ 350 kiloyear long phase of gradual late Maastrichtian (latest-Cretaceous) global warming starting at ~ 66.4 Ma can provide valuable insights into the long-term influences of global change on marine ecosystems. Here we perform micropaleontological analyses on three cores from the New Jersey paleoshelf, to assess the re...
Article
Full-text available
The early Eocene (56 to 48 million years ago) is inferred to have been the most recent time that Earth's atmospheric CO2 concentrations exceeded 1000 ppm. Global mean temperatures were also substantially warmer than those of the present day. As such, the study of early Eocene climate provides insight into how a super-warm Earth system behaves and o...
Article
In their recent paper, Youssef et al. (2017) published a quantitative study of Paleocene ostracod distributions in the Southwestern Desert of Egypt and recognized regional ecozones within a paleobiogeographic concept. To understand the significance of this ecozonation, a solid stratigraphic framework is required, though the authors only provided li...
Article
A number of short warming events occurred during Paleocene and Eocene, of which the “Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum” (PETM, 56 Ma) is the most severe and most investigated event. The less known “Latest Danian Event” (LDE) at 62.2 Ma represents a 200 ky-lasting warming phase, superimposed on a long-term cooling trend after the Early Paleocene. Sou...
Preprint
Full-text available
The early Eocene (56 to 48 million years ago) is inferred to have been the most recent time that Earth's atmospheric CO2 concentrations exceeded 1000 ppm. Global mean temperatures were also substantially warmer than present day. As such, study of early Eocene climate provides insight into how a super-warm Earth system behaves and offers an opportun...
Cover Page
Full-text available
The image shows a virtual equatorial section through the foraminifera Nummulites involutus Schaub. This is a small (~ 3 mm) excellently preserved nummulite from the Ypresian clays near Kortrijk, Belgium. Calendar is on offer at: https://www.tmsoc.org/microfossil-image-competition-and-calendar-2019/
Article
In paleoclimate studies, multiple temperature records are often compared and combined to evaluate temperature trends. Yet, no standardized approach for integrating proxy-derived paleotemperature records exists. In addition, paleotemperature data are often reported without uncertainty estimates (prediction errors), and raw data are not always availa...
Article
The Chicxulub asteroid impact at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary resulted in one of the most abrupt global warming events in the past 100 m.y., presenting an analogue to current global warming. Here, we present high-resolution geochemical, micropaleontological, and palynological records of the Brazos-1 (Texas, USA), Stevns Klint (Denmark),...
Article
Full-text available
In order to assess the potential of the honeycomb oyster Pycnodonte vesicularis for the reconstruction of palaeoseasonality, several specimens recovered from late Maastrichtian strata in the Neuquén Basin (Argentina) were subject to a multi-proxy investigation, involving scanning techniques and trace element and isotopic analysis. Combined CT scann...
Article
The complexity of sedimentary organic-matter formation, its source to burial, and influence on bottom-water communities are addressed in this study of the 19 million years-long Upper Cretaceous Tethyan upwelling regime in the Levant. A multi-proxy approach is amalgamated into a model through which the paleoceanographic complexity of an intense and...
Article
This study presents benthic foraminiferal data from two sedimentary successions across the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) from Jordan. Calcareous nannofossil biozones NP9a, NP9b, and NP10 of latest Paleocene and earliest Eocene age were encountered in proximal (core OS–01) and distal (core OS–28) sites. Lithologically, the investigated seq...
Article
Full-text available
We assess the disputed phase relations between forcing and climatic response in the early Pleistocene with a spliced Gelasian (∼ 2.6–1.8 Ma) multi-proxy record from the southern North Sea basin. The cored sections couple climate evolution on both land and sea during the intensification of Northern Hemisphere glaciation (NHG) in NW Europe, providing...
Article
Full-text available
The early Eocene greenhouse world was marked by multiple transient hyperthermal events. The most extreme was the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM, ~56 Ma), linked to the extinction of the globally recognised deep-sea benthic foraminiferal Velasco fauna, which led to the development of early Eocene assemblages. This turnover has been studied a...
Data
Taxonomic list. Most common benthic foraminifera during the early Eocene and other species mentioned in the text. (DOCX)
Data
Quantitative data of benthic foraminifera in the studied samples from ODP Site 1051 and 1258. (XLSX)
Data
Benthic foraminifera across the middle Ypresian interval. (XLSX)
Data
Number of species vs. number of specimens in samples from ODP Sites 1051 and 1258. (TIF)
Data
Quantitative data of benthic foraminifera in the studied samples from DSDP site 401. (XLSX)
Data
Benthic foraminifera across the lower Ypresian interval. (XLSX)
Data
Quantitative data of benthic foraminifera in the studied samples from ODP Site 1262 and 1263. (XLSX)
Data
Number of samples, specimens and species, and size fraction studied in each site. (XLSX)
Article
The early Paleogene is characterized by numerous hyperthermals, transient (< 200 kyr) ocean warming events, of which the Latest Danian Event (LDE, ~ 62.1 Ma) is one of the first. Although the LDE appears to be controlled by similar processes as early Eocene hyperthermals, the first open ocean benthic foraminiferal record across the LDE at Walvis Ri...
Article
Full-text available
In order to assess the potential of the honeycomb oyster Pycnodonte vesicularis for the reconstruction of palaeoseasonality, several specimens recovered from the late Maastrichtian Neuquén Basin (Argentina) were subject to a multi-proxy investigation, involving scanning techniques, trace element and isotopic analysis. Combined CT scanning and light...
Preprint
Full-text available
We assess the disputed phase relations between forcing and climatic response in the Early Pleistocene with a spliced Gelasian (~ 2.6–1.8 Ma) multi-proxy record from the southern North Sea. The cored sections couple climate evolution on both land and sea during the onset of Northern Hemisphere Glaciations (NHG) in NW Europe, providing the first well...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Pycnodonte or " honeycomb-oysters " (Bivalvia: Gryphaeidea) is an extinct genus of calcite-producing bivalves which is found in abundance in Cretaceous to Pleistocene fossil beds worldwide. As such, Pycnodonte shells could be ideal tracers of palaeoclimate through time, with the capability to reconstruct sea water conditions and palaeotemperatures...
Article
Latest Maastrichtian climate change caused by Deccan volcanism has been invoked as a cause of mass extinction at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary (~66.0 Ma). Yet, late Maastrichtian climate and ecological changes are poorly documented, in particular on the Southern Hemisphere. Here we present upper Maastrichtian-lower Danian climate and bio...
Article
Full-text available
It is commonly accepted that the mass extinction associated with the Cretaceous–Paleogene (K–Pg) boundary (∼ 66 Ma) is related to the environmental effects of a large extraterrestrial impact. The biological and oceanographic consequences of the mass extinction are, however, still poorly understood. According to the Living Ocean model, the biologica...
Article
Free download at: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ter.12250/full -- The Latest Danian Event (LDE, ~62.1 Ma) is an early Palaeogene hyperthermal or transient (<200 kyr) ocean warming event. We present the first deep-sea benthic foraminiferal faunal record to study deep-sea biotic changes together with new benthic (Nuttallides truempyi) st...
Article
Full-text available
It is by now unequivocally shown that the mass extinction associated with the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary (~ 66 Ma) is related to the environmental effects of a large extraterrestrial impact. The biological and oceanographic consequences of the mass extinction are, however, still poorly understood. According to the Living Ocean model of D’...
Article
The Cretaceous/Paleogene (K/Pg) boundary extinction event is inextricably linked to the Chicxulub impact. Environmental changes like sea level changes and changes in food supply prior to or after the impact could however have contributed to the biotic turnover. In this study, benthic foraminifera from two cores from the Brazos River area in Texas a...
Article
Full-text available
The marine ecosystem has been severely disturbed by several transient paleoenvironmental events (0.6‰, similar in magnitude to the one previously reported from neighboring Site 1209 for benthic foraminifera. δ18O-inferred warming by 1.6 to 2.8°C (0.4-0.7‰ δ18O measured on benthic and planktic foraminiferal tests) of the entire water column accompan...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract.—It has generally been argued that the majority of fossil benthic foraminifera, the most common proxy for paleo bottom oceanic conditions, could not tolerate anoxia. Here we present evidence that fossil foraminifera were able to successfully colonize anoxic–dysoxic bottom waters, by using adaptations similar to those found in living specie...
Conference Paper
The complexity of organic matter (OM) formation, its source to sink propagation and preservational process through geological time, has been the focus of extensive and interdisciplinary studies. In this study we address this issue by examining the Upper Cretaceous organic-rich succession in the Levant. A multi-proxy approach, integrating elemental,...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The early Eocene is characterized by long-term global warming culminating in the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). During this time interval, the Peri-Tethys was connected to the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans by north-south and east-west trending seaways. The Aktulagay section in Kazakhstan provides an expanded record of the middle Ypresian (NP11-...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Latest Danian Event (LDE – aka Top Chron 27n Event) is characterized by a >1 ‰ negative benthic foraminiferal CIE in various sections in Egypt, which has been correlated with δ13C shifts of ~0.7‰ in Zumaia (Spain), Wombat Plateau (ODP 761B, Indian Ocean) and Shatsky Rise (ODP 1209, Pacific Ocean) (Bornemann et al., 2009; Westerhold et al., 2011...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
During the Paleocene the marine ecosystem was disturbed by several transient climate events, e.g. the Dan-C2 (65.2 Ma), the Latest Danian Event (LDE, 61.75 Ma), and most known, the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM, 56 Ma). So far the LDE (or " Top Chron 27n Event ") has rarely been studied in deep-sea sites with respect to the evolution and t...
Article
The environmental impact of the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) has been intensively studied in the New Jersey Coastal Plain, but the benthic foraminiferal response, reflecting bottom water conditions, has not been documented at high resolution. We use benthic foraminiferal data across the Paleocene-Eocene boundary in cores from Wilson Lake...