We used a high-resolution oxygen isotope (δ18Ocoral), carbon isotope (δ13Ccoral) and Sr/Ca ratios measured in the skeleton of a reef-building coral, Porites sp., to reveal seasonal-scale upwelling events and their interannual variability in the Gulf of Oman. Our δ13Ccoral record shows sharp negative excursions in the summer, which correlate with known upwelling events. Using δ13Ccoral anomalies as a proxy for upwelling, we found 17 summer upwelling events occurred in the last 26 years. These anomalous negative excursions of δ13Ccoral result from upwelled water depleted in 13C (dissolved inorganic carbon) and decreased water-column transparency. We reconstructed biweekly SSTs from coral Sr/Ca ratios and the oxygen isotopic composition of seawater (δ18OSW) by subtracting the reconstructed Sr/Ca-SST from δ18Ocoral. Significant δ18OSW anomalies occur during major upwelling events. Our results suggest δ13Ccoral anomalies can be used as a proxy for seasonal upwelling intensity in the Gulf of Oman, which, driven by the Indian/Arabian Summer Monsoon, is subject to interannual variability.
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