Eurasian Soil Science

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 119–131 | Cite as

Dynamics of the properties of steppe paleosols of the Sarmatian time (2nd century BC-4th century AD) in relation to secular variations in climatic humidity

  • V. A. Demkin
  • B. N. Zolotareva
  • T. S. Demkina
  • T. E. Khomutova
  • N. N. Kashirskaya
  • M. V. El’tsov
  • S. N. Udal’tsov
Genesis and Geography of Soils


Paleosols buried under kurgans of the Early (2nd-1st centuries BC), Middle (1st-2nd centuries AD) and Late (2nd-IV centuries AD) Sarmatian epochs were studied in dry steppes and desert steppes of the Lower Volga region (the Privolzhskaya and Ergeni Uplands and the Caspian Lowland). It was found that temporal variations in the morphological, chemical, microbiological, and magnetic properties of the paleosols in the interval of 2200–1600 BP were characterized by the cyclic pattern related to secular dynamics of climatic humidity with changes in the mean annual precipitation of ±30–50 mm. These climate changes did not transform chestnut paleosols and paleosolonetzes at the type or subtype taxonomic levels. However, they led to certain changes in the humus, carbonate, and salt profiles of the soils; in the character of solonetzic horizon B1; and in the state of microbial communities. According to these data, the Sarmatian time was characterized by alternation of micropluvial and microarid stages lasting fro about 100–200 years. In particular, the stages of humidization were observed in the 1st century BC-1st century AD and in the 4th century AD; the most arid conditions were observed in the second half of the 2nd and the first half of the 3rd century AD.


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • V. A. Demkin
    • 1
  • B. N. Zolotareva
    • 1
  • T. S. Demkina
    • 1
  • T. E. Khomutova
    • 1
  • N. N. Kashirskaya
    • 1
  • M. V. El’tsov
    • 1
  • S. N. Udal’tsov
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Physicochemical and Biological Problems of Soil ScienceRussian Academy of SciencesPushchino, Moscow oblastRussia

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