Late Pleistocene

The Late Pleistocene or Tarantian stage is defined by the base of the Eemian interglacial phase before the final glacial episode of the Pleistocene 126,000 - 5,000 years ago. The end of the age is defined as 11,700 calendar years b2k (before AD 2000). The age represents the end of the Pleistocene epoch and is followed by the Holocene epoch. (wiki)

World Heritage Sites connected to Late Pleistocene

  • Aldabra Atoll Most of the land surface comprises ancient coral reef (~125,000 years old) which has been repeatedly raised above sea level. (Nom file)
  • Altamira Cave "The artistic apogee, known as Magdalenian, corresponds to the end of the Ice Age, from 17,000 to 13,000 BP. This was the period of the major works in the decorated caves" (AB ev)
  • Blue and John Crow Mountains Fauna seems to date from late Pleistocene Link
  • Coa Valley and Siega Verde 22,000-10,000 BC
  • Decorated cave of Pont d'Arc Art going back to 35k ybp. See e.g "The only known depiction of a Late Pleistocene Ice Age leopard (Chauvet Cave) shows a coat pattern, similar to modern leopards." From wiki article on that animal
  • Discovery Coast As planícies fluvio-marinhas (complexos praiais, estuarinos e aluviais) são constituídas por sedimentos quaternários, depositados no intervalo de tempo entre o Pleistoceno Superior e o Holoceno. Link
  • East Rennell Near the end of the Pleistocene, tectonic movements raised the seabed sufficiently to allow coral building on Bellona, Rennell and Indispensable Reefs. (EOEarth)
  • Gobustan Rock Art The c6000 petroglyphs across 4 locations date from c 30000ybp to the Middle Ages. Little information is provided about numbers for each period. The Nom File identifies 4 stylistic groups across the High Pleistocene and Early Holocene (to c9k ybp), followed by examples for Neolithic, Eneolithic, Bronze, Iron and later. The OUV is based on Crit iii ...The engravings ... represent so graphically activities connected with hunting and fishing at a time when the climate and vegetation of the area were warmer and wetter than today.... As such, the earliest periods seem to be of the greater importance .. when the Caspian was much higher and, indeed, connected with the Black Sea
  • Gorham's Cave Complex Neanderthal life + deposits covering the past 125,000 years (nom file)
  • Great Smoky Mountains Great Smoky Mountains National Park is of world importance as the outstanding example of of the diverse Arcto-Tertiary geoflora era, providing an indication of what the late Pleistocene flora looked like before recent human impacts (criteria i). It is large enough to be a significant example of continuing biological evolution of this natural system (criteria ii).
  • Hierapolis-Pamukkale Pammukale: age estimations show that travertine deposition started during the late Pleistocene. (Encyclopedia of Caves and Karst Science)
  • Jiuzhaigou Valley From the Quaternary to the late Pleistocene period, the altitude of many Jiuzhai Valley mountains was over 4,000 meters (13,123 feet), close to the snowline. As the glacial climate approached, glacial action took place in alpine areas, and glaciers extending down to 2,800m (9,186 feet) valleys, leaving behind terminal and side moraines and dike barriers which blocked the water and helped to shape lakes. Link
  • Kakadu National Park Oldest paintings ca. 20,000 years old
  • Lakes of Ounianga Les lacs d'Ounianga forment le reste d'un lac plus grand qui occupait le bassin il y a 5000 - 15000 ans. (Wiki)
  • Lorentz National Park The lowering and rising of the sea level during the glacial and inter-glacial periods of the Pleistocene, along with continuous activity in the mobile belt which characterizes the contact zone of the two colliding lithospheric plates, has continued to promote the great biodiversity of the island of New Guinea in general, and in the Lorentz area in particular. (EOEarth)
  • Lut Desert Aridity and geomorphological features date from the Late Quaternary, so Late Pleistocene at its earliest
  • Mana Pools From that same late Pleistocene era, pollen records prove an increase of mangrove and coastal vegetation, implying an extension of coastal wetlands during flooding of the broad, low-gradient Zambezi inner shelf area. (EOEarth)
  • Morne Trois Pitons Seven major andesiticedacitic volcanic centres have been active in southern Dominica since the late Pleistocene: Morne Trois Piton, Wotten Waven/Micotrin, Valley of Desolation, Watt Mountain, Grand Soufrière Hills, Morne Anglais/John, and the Plat Pays volcanic complex (Lindsay et al., 2003, 2005). Available ages for these centres range from ~50,000 to 450 years, and most have had eruptions within the last 10 ka Link
  • Mount Athos The mediterranean coniferous forest evolved after the end of the last glaciation in Greece during the Heinrich Event. Link
  • Ningaloo Coast Today, Ningaloo Reef grows on a substrate of fossil reefs that formed during the last glacial stage, which peaked approximately 20,000 years ago (nom file)
  • Petroglyphs of the Mongolian Altai Oldest petroglyphs date from the Late Pleistocene (AB ev)
  • Plitvice Lakes During ten to twenty thousand years, in the latitudinally running faults some ten to twenty barriers have been created; they divided the Korana riverbed and closed from the north the lake basins created this way.
  • Pyrénées - Mont Perdu "Remains of human settlement - stone circles, caves and a dolmen - dating from the Palaeolithic (40,000-10,000 BC) have been found in the area" - it is unclear when the tradition of pastoralism started
  • Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka rock painting, spanning periods from the Mesolithic to the Historic (AB ev)
  • Saryarka The increase of climate's aridity (in Late Pleistocene - Holocene) led to the break-up of a large (in ancient times) river drainage system and to the creation of a lake chain along the Turgai hollow (nom file)
  • Serra da Capivara "oldest traces of rock art in South America; they have been dated to 26,000-22,000 BC" (AB ev)
  • Shiretoko For example, sea cliffs around Utoro range from 60m to 120m in height and were formed from andesitic lava from the eruption of Mt Rausu 80,000 years ago and subsequent marine erosion. (AB ev)
  • Sian Ka'an "Sian Ka'an lies on a partially emerged coastal limestone plain which forms part of the extensive barrier reef system along the eastern coast of Central America. Much of the reserve lies in a zone of recent Pleistocene origin which still appears to be in a transitional stage."
  • Tadrart Acacus 12,000 BC to AD 100
  • Talamanca Range-La Amistad Reserves At least since the last glaciation about 25,000 years ago, tropical rain forests have covered most of the area... (AB ev)
  • Tasmanian Wilderness 30,000 BP (earliest occupation)
  • Trang An During the Pleistocene and Holocene, the margins of the Trang An massif were invaded and re-worked by the sea many times. AND the way that humans interacted with the natural landscape and adapted to major changes in environment over a time period spanning more than 30,000 years, between about 1,200 BP and 33,100 BP (AB ev)
  • Vézère Valley Lascaux estimated to be 17,300 years old (wiki)
  • Wadi Rum "combination of 25,000 petroglyphs with 20,000 inscriptions and their continuity over a period of at least 12,000 years sets Wadi Rum apart" (decision doc)
  • Waterton Glacier International Peace Park The geologic event that would define the landscape began with a global cooling trend approximately 2 million years ago. Link
  • West Norwegian Fjords The high mountain surface is a slightly undulating peneplain dissected by rivers, the courses of which were deepened, widened and scoured 20,000 years ago by the glaciers of the last Ice Age. Link
  • Willandra Lakes The presence of settlements of Homo Sapiens Sapiens is attested to in the Lake Mungo region from ca.-40,000 years.
  • Wood Buffalo National Park There is evidence of multiple crossings of bison to and from Asia starting before 500,000 years ago and continuing until at least 220,000 years ago. (Wiki)
  • Wrangel Island the latest separation of the island from the mainland took place about 10000 years ago.


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