I grew up in central Illinois and didn't travel much as a child. In fact, I never even saw a mountain in person until I attended summer field camp in Red Lodge, Montana at the age of 20 (no joke!). Needless to say, I was hooked immediately and have spent the last couple of decades making up for lost time.
I am currently doing research all over the southwestern U.S., the Atacama Desert of northern Chile, the Middle East (Jordan), and the California Channel Islands. My work focuses primarily on using geologic deposits associated with springs and wetlands to understand the hydrologic response of small desert watersheds to past episodes of abrupt climate change. I also develop and test new and innovative methods for dating various materials by radiocarbon, including gastropod shells, old charcoal, tufa, and concentrated organic matter.
Science and Products
Science and Products
Pre-USGS PublicationsPigati, J.S. Miller, D.M., 2008, Late Pleistocene wetland deposits at Valley Wells, eastern Mojave Desert, California: initial results. In Trough to trough: the Colorado River and the Salton Sea - 2008 Desert Symposium Field Guide and Proceedings, R.E. Reynolds (Ed.), California State University, Desert Studies Consortium, and LSA Associates, Inc., 138-142.Pigati, J.S., Quade, J., Wilson, J., Jull, A.J.T., Lifton, N.A., 2007, Development of low-background vacuum extraction and graphitization systems for 14C dating of old (40-60 ka) samples. Quaternary International 166, 4-14.Felton, A.A., Russell, J.M., Cohen, A.S., Baker, M.E., Chesley, J., Lezzar, K.E., McGlue, M.M., Pigati, J.S., Quade, J., Stager, J.C., 2007, Paleolimnological evidence for the onset and termination of glacial aridity from Lake Tanganyika, East Tropical Africa. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 252, 405-423.Shanahan, T.S., Overpeck, J.T., Beck, J.W., Wheeler, C.W., Pigati, J.S., Talbot, M.R., Scholz, C.A., Peck, J., King, J.W., 2006, Paleoclimatic variations in West Africa from a record of late Pleistocene and Holocene lake level stands of Lake Bosumtwi, Ghana. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 242 (3-4), 287-302.Shanahan, T.M., Pigati, J.S., Dettman, D.L., Quade, J., 2005, Isotopic variability in the aragonite shells of freshwater gastropods living in springs with nearly constant temperature and isotopic composition. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 69 (16), 3949-3966.Pigati, J.S., Lifton, N.A., 2004, Geomagnetic effects on time-integrated cosmogenic nuclide production with emphasis on in-situ 14C and 10Be. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 226, 193-205. (Elsevier Top 50 Most Cited Papers 2004-2007 Award).Pigati, J.S., Quade, J., Shanahan, T.M., Haynes, C.V. Jr., 2004, Radiocarbon dating of minute gastropods and new constraints on the timing of late Quaternary spring-discharge deposits in southern Arizona, USA. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 204 (1-2), 33-45.Rech, J.A., Pigati, J.S., Quade, J., Betancourt, J.L., 2003, Re-evaluation of mid-Holocene wetland deposits at Quebrada Puripica, northern Chile. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 194, 207-222.Pigati, J.S., 2002, On correcting 14C ages of gastropod shell carbonate for fractionation. Radiocarbon 44(3), 755-760.Stiner, M.C., Achyuthan, H., Arsebuk, G., Howell, F.C., Josephson, S.C., Juell, K.E., Pigati, J.S., Quade, J., 1998, Reconstructing cave bear paleoecology from skeletons: A cross-disciplinary study of middle-Pleistocene bears from Yarimburgaz Cave, Turkey. Paleobiology 24, 74-96.