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Sample records for lowermost cretaceous bornholm

  1. The bivalve Anopaea (Inoceramidae) from the Upper Jurassic-lowermost Cretaceous of Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zell, Patrick; Crame, J. Alistair; Stinnesbeck, Wolfgang; Beckmann, Seija

    2015-07-01

    In Mexico, the Upper Jurassic to lowermost Cretaceous La Casita and coeval La Caja and La Pimienta formations are well-known for their abundant and well-preserved marine vertebrates and invertebrates. The latter include conspicuous inoceramid bivalves of the genus Anopaea not formally described previously from Mexico. Anopaea bassei (Lecolle de Cantú, 1967), Anopaea cf. stoliczkai (Holdhaus, 1913), Anopaea cf. callistoensis Crame and Kelly, 1995 and Anopaea sp. are rare constituents in distinctive Tithonian-lower Berriasian levels of the La Caja Formation and one Tithonian horizon of the La Pimienta Formation. Anopaea bassei was previously documented from the Tithonian of central Mexico and Cuba, while most other members of Anopaea described here are only known from southern high latitudes. The Mexican assemblage also includes taxa which closely resemble Anopaea stoliczkai from the Tithonian of India, Indonesia and the Antarctic Peninsula, and Anopaea callistoensis from the late Tithonian to ?early Berriasian of the Antarctic Peninsula. Our new data expand the palaeogeographical distribution of the high latitude Anopaea to the Gulf of Mexico region and substantiate faunal exchange, in the Late Jurassic-earliest Cretaceous, between Mexico and the Antarctic Realm.

  2. Uppermost Jurassic and lowermost Cretaceous dinocyst successions of Siberia, the Subarctic Urals and Russian Platform and their interregional correlation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pestchevitskaya, Ekaterina; Lebedeva, Natalia; Ryabokon, Alyona

    2011-06-01

    Uppermost Jurassic and lowermost Cretaceous dinocyst successions calibrated against ammonite and foraminiferal zones were studied in five sections from North Siberia, the Subarctic Urals and the Russian Platform. Together with analysis of published palynological material on additional contemporaneous sections from the Russian Platform, our research provides a reliable regional correlation. The obtained biostratigraphic results are compared to palynological data from different regions of Europe, America, Australia and Antarctica using the method of first/last appearances of selected key species and evolutionary trends of dinocyst floras. Four correlative levels are defined in the middle parts of the Volgian and Berriasian and near their tops providing interregional correlation of dinocyst successions. These levels range within 1-1.5 ammonite zones as the first/last appearances of some key species have minor stratigraphic shifts in different sections that may be related to migration processes or to a different understanding of the stratigraphic position of ammonite zones.

  3. Paleomagnetic results from the Cambrian and Ordovician sediments of Bornholm (Denmark) and Southern Sweden and paleogeographical implications for Baltica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewandowski, Marek; Abrahamsen, Niels

    2003-11-01

    If apparent polar wander paths (APWP) cross, the question arises how to prove the older magnetization to be primary and not just a younger overprint. This problem is typically met in areas affected by percolating mineralizing fluids and/or heating due to a younger regional igneous activity. The Permian magnetic overprint is the classical example. Earlier paleomagnetic studies over the Lowermost Cambrian Nekso Sandstone Fm (NSF) of Bornholm (Denmark) yielded a characteristic remanent magnetization (ChRM) similar to the Permian directions for Baltica. Since a possible reason could be a chemical overprint, we checked whether this phenomenon did take place on a regional scale. Some samples therefore were collected from other Lower Cambrian clastics of Bornholm and Southern Scandinavia. In result we show that the well-grouped and stable ChRM of the NSF contrasts with fairly chaotic, soft, and badly preserved magnetizations of the Balka, Hardeberga, Mickwitzia, and Lingulid sandstones of Bornholm and Southern Sweden, thus not indicating widespread paleomagnetic overprint. We demonstrate that the ChRM of the NSF is most probably of syndepositional/early diagenetic origin and its similarity to the Permian direction for Baltica is only casual. We propose a normal polarity and a near-equatorial position on the Southern Hemisphere for Baltica in the early Cambrian time, as well as a more complicated trend of the APWP for this paleocontinent than envisaged by other authors. Paleomagnetic results from the Arenigian limestones of the Laesaa Formation (Bornholm) that yield excellently defined but most probably only secondary components are also presented.

  4. The oldest accurate record of Scenopinidae in the Lowermost Eocene amber of France (Diptera: Brachycera).

    PubMed

    Garrouste, Romain; Azar, Dany; Nel, Andre

    2016-01-01

    Eocenotrichia magnifica gen. et sp. nov. (Diptera: Scenopinidae: Metatrichini) is described and illustrated from the Lowermost Eocene amber of Oise (France) and represents the oldest definitive window fly fossil. The present discovery in the Earliest Eocene supports the Late Cretaceous-Paleocene age currently proposed for the emergence of Metatrichini. PMID:27394507

  5. Multiple seismic reflectors in Earth's lowermost mantle.

    PubMed

    Shang, Xuefeng; Shim, Sang-Heon; de Hoop, Maarten; van der Hilst, Robert

    2014-02-18

    The modern view of Earth's lowermost mantle considers a D″ region of enhanced (seismologically inferred) heterogeneity bounded by the core-mantle boundary and an interface some 150-300 km above it, with the latter often attributed to the postperovskite phase transition (in MgSiO3). Seismic exploration of Earth's deep interior suggests, however, that this view needs modification. So-called ScS and SKKS waves, which probe the lowermost mantle from above and below, respectively, reveal multiple reflectors beneath Central America and East Asia, two areas known for subduction of oceanic plates deep into Earth's mantle. This observation is inconsistent with expectations from a thermal response of a single isochemical postperovskite transition, but some of the newly observed structures can be explained with postperovskite transitions in differentiated slab materials. Our results imply that the lowermost mantle is more complex than hitherto thought and that interfaces and compositional heterogeneity occur beyond the D″ region sensu stricto. PMID:24550266

  6. Seasonal variation of methane in the water column of Arkona and Bornholm Basin, western Baltic Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gülzow, W.; Gräwe, U.; Kedzior, S.; Schmale, O.; Rehder, G.

    2014-11-01

    Methane and the hydrographic parameters temperature, salinity and oxygen (T, Sal, O2) were surveyed at several stations and along selected transects in the Arkona and Bornholm Basin, western Baltic Sea, between 2009 and 2012. The methane distribution in the two adjacent basins show annually reoccurring as well as seasonal variations, governed by stratification of the water column during the summer period, enhanced vertical mixing during winter and the frequent inflow of oxygen-rich saline water from the North Sea. The Arkona Basin is characterized by low methane concentrations in the surface water with increasing values towards the bottom water layer. Elevated methane concentrations were found in the bottom layer during the summer period. The Bornholm Basin also shows low methane concentrations in the surface water, but high values in the bottom water layer throughout the year. For anoxic conditions, often prevailing in the Bornholm Basin in summer, a positive correlation between methane and hydrogen sulfide concentrations was observed. Strong depletion in the stable isotopic ratio of methane in the deeper waters of the Bornholm Basin reveals effective oxidation processes. The midwater region from 50 to 70 m water depth in the Bornholm Basin is characterized by a methane-enriched water layer, persistent throughout the survey period. High-resolution hydrographic modelling of the physical driving forces suggest this finding to be caused by intrusion of methane-rich waters originating from the Arkona Basin into the water column of the Bornholm Basin and is shown to be a powerful tool for the interpretation of the development of the methane distribution in space and time.

  7. Seismic resolution of lowermost mantle structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hempel, Stefanie; Thomas, Christine; Nissen-Meyer, Tarje

    2015-04-01

    We use the axisymmetric, spherical Earth spectral elements code AxiSEM to model seismic compressional waves which sample laterally varying lowermost mantle structures. Synthetic seismograms with dominant periods between 1 and 16 seconds are computed for approximately 1500 models of D'' heterogeneities varying in thickness, lateral wavelength, topographic behaviour and elastic properties. We use high-resolution array seismological stacking techniques to process the synthetic data. Our study shows, that the position of the reflector inferred from 1D backprojecting techniques as used in previous studies is overestimated with increasing inclination of the slope of the structure, whereas undulating reflectors are underestimated in height. For models with D'' topography we find D'' discontinuity reflections in only a small subset of stacks, but an apparent topography of the CMB. Various factors such as very thick or very thin D'' layers, strong topography, convex curvature of the reflector towards the seismic source lead to invisibility of the D'' reflector in most cases. Our study also reveals, that amplitude studies lead to highly ambiguous information due to the multiple dependencies of the amplitude. The thickness of seismic velocity gradients was previously underestimated, leaving wider gradients possible to be delected. Our observations in synthetic seismograms explain the intermittence of D'' observations, as well as enable us to discuss accuracy of array seismological observations. Thus, seismic observations can more reliably be used to support or exclude possible mineralphysical or geodynamical interpretations.

  8. Strong, Multi-Scale Heterogeneity in Earth's Lowermost Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkalčić, Hrvoje; Young, Mallory

    2014-05-01

    The ~300 km thick layer above the Earth's core mantle boundary remains largely an enigma and has proven to be far more than a simple dividing line; rather it is a complex region with a range of proposed phenomena such as thermal and compositional heterogeneity, partial melting and anisotropy. Characterizing the heterogeneity in the lowermost mantle will prove crucial to accurately understanding key geodynamical processes within our planet. Here we obtain compressional wave (P-wave) velocity images and uncertainty estimates for the lowermost mantle using old and newly collected travel time data sensitive to the lowermost mantle and core and collected by waveform cross-correlation. The images obtained by the inversion technique are void of explicit model parameterization and smoothing. To attest to the impressive capabilities of the transdimensional and hierarchical Bayesian inversion scheme, we design a comprehensive, all-embracing synthetic resolution test demonstrating the retrieval of velocity discontinuities, smooth velocity transitions, structures of varying scales and strengths. Subsequent spectral analyses reveal a power of heterogeneity three times larger than previous estimates and a multi-scale wavelength content in the P-wave velocity field of the lowermost mantle. The newly obtained P-wave tomographic images of the lowermost mantle are not dominated by harmonic degree 2 structure as is the case for tomographic images derived from S-wave data. Instead, the heterogeneity size is more uniformly distributed between about 500 and 6000 km. Inter alia, the resulting heterogeneity spectrum provides a bridge between the long-wavelength features of previous global models and the very short-scale dimensions of scatterers mapped in independent studies. Because the long scale features are less dominant in our model than in S-wave velocity maps, we cannot reasonably determine a correlation between them and the position of detected ultra-low velocity zones.

  9. Mass and Ozone Fluxes from the Lowermost Stratosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schoeberl, Mark R.; Olsen, Mark A.

    2004-01-01

    Net mass flux from the stratosphere to the troposphere can be computed from the heating rate along the 380K isentropic surface and the time rate of change of the mass of the lowermost stratosphere (the region between the tropopause and the 380K isentrope). Given this net mass flux and the cross tropopause diabatic mass flux, the residual adiabatic mass flux across the tropopause can also be estimated. These fluxes have been computed using meteorological fields from a free-running general circulation model (FVGCM) and two assimilation data sets, FVDAS, and UKMO. The data sets tend to agree that the annual average net mass flux for the Northern Hemisphere is about 1P10 kg/s. There is less agreement on the southern Hemisphere flux that might be half as large. For all three data sets, the adiabatic mass flux is computed to be from the upper troposphere into the lowermost stratosphere. This flux will dilute air entering from higher stratospheric altitudes. The mass fluxes are convolved with ozone mixing ratios from the Goddard 3D CTM (which uses the FVGCM) to estimate the cross-tropopause transport of ozone. A relatively large adiabatic flux of tropospheric ozone from the tropical upper troposphere into the extratropical lowermost stratosphere dilutes the stratospheric air in the lowermost stratosphere. Thus, a significant fraction of any measured ozone STE may not be ozone produced in the higher Stratosphere. The results also illustrate that the annual cycle of ozone concentration in the lowermost stratosphere has as much of a role as the transport in the seasonal ozone flux cycle. This implies that a simplified calculation of ozone STE mass from air mass and a mean ozone mixing ratio may have a large uncertainty.

  10. Tomographic resolution of plume anomalies in the lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Jing; Zhou, Ying; Chen, Yongshun

    2015-05-01

    Mantle plumes as well as `superplumes' have been imaged in the lowermost mantle in tomographic studies. To investigate seismic resolution of deep mantle plume anomalies, we use a spectral element method (SEM) to simulate global seismic wave propagation in 3-D wave speed models and measure frequency-dependent P-, S-, Pdiff- and Sdiff-wave traveltime anomalies caused by plume structures in the lowermost mantle. We compare SEM time delay measurements with calculations based on ray theory and show that an anticorrelation between bulk sound wave speed and S-wave speed could be produced as an artifact. This is caused by different wavefront healing effects between P and S waves in thermal plume models. The differences in wave diffraction between the two types of waves depend on epicentral distance and wave frequency. We show that bulk-sound speed structure can not be recovered in ray-theoretical tomographic inversions when the lateral extent of the anomaly is smaller than the size of the Fresnel zone in the lowermost mantle. In addition, an anticorrelation between bulk sound speed and S-wave speed can be produced in ray-theoretical tomography when the size of the anomaly is less than ˜2000 km; and, the artifacts become more pronounced as the lateral extent of the plume decreases. This indicates a chemical origin of `superplumes' in the lowermost mantle may not be necessary to explain observed seismic traveltimes of core-mantle diffracted waves. The same set of Pdiff and Sdiff measurements are inverted using finite-frequency tomography based on Born sensitivity kernels. We show that wavefront healing effects can be accounted for in finite-frequency tomography to recover the true velocity model.

  11. Multiple seismic reflectors in Earth’s lowermost mantle

    PubMed Central

    Shang, Xuefeng; Shim, Sang-Heon; de Hoop, Maarten; van der Hilst, Robert

    2014-01-01

    The modern view of Earth’s lowermost mantle considers a D″ region of enhanced (seismologically inferred) heterogeneity bounded by the core–mantle boundary and an interface some 150–300 km above it, with the latter often attributed to the postperovskite phase transition (in MgSiO3). Seismic exploration of Earth’s deep interior suggests, however, that this view needs modification. So-called ScS and SKKS waves, which probe the lowermost mantle from above and below, respectively, reveal multiple reflectors beneath Central America and East Asia, two areas known for subduction of oceanic plates deep into Earth’s mantle. This observation is inconsistent with expectations from a thermal response of a single isochemical postperovskite transition, but some of the newly observed structures can be explained with postperovskite transitions in differentiated slab materials. Our results imply that the lowermost mantle is more complex than hitherto thought and that interfaces and compositional heterogeneity occur beyond the D″ region sensu stricto. PMID:24550266

  12. Vitrinite reflectance data for Cretaceous marine shales and coals in the Bighorn Basin, north-central Wyoming and south-central Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pawlewicz, Mark J.; Finn, Thomas M.

    2012-01-01

    The Bighorn Basin is a large Laramide (Late Cretaceous through Eocene) structural and sedimentary basin that encompasses about 10,400 square miles in north-central Wyoming and south-central Montana. The purpose of this report is to present new vitrinite reflectance data collected from Cretaceous marine shales and coals in the Bighorn Basin to better characterize the thermal maturity and petroleum potential of these rocks. Ninety-eight samples from Lower Cretaceous and lowermost Upper Cretaceous strata were collected from well cuttings from wells stored at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Core Research Center in Lakewood, Colorado.

  13. Strong, Multi-Scale Heterogeneity in Earth's Lowermost Mantle.

    PubMed

    Tkalčić, Hrvoje; Young, Mallory; Muir, Jack B; Davies, D Rhodri; Mattesini, Maurizio

    2015-01-01

    The core mantle boundary (CMB) separates Earth's liquid iron outer core from the solid but slowly convecting mantle. The detailed structure and dynamics of the mantle within ~300 km of this interface remain enigmatic: it is a complex region, which exhibits thermal, compositional and phase-related heterogeneity, isolated pockets of partial melt and strong variations in seismic velocity and anisotropy. Nonetheless, characterising the structure of this region is crucial to a better understanding of the mantle's thermo-chemical evolution and the nature of core-mantle interactions. In this study, we examine the heterogeneity spectrum from a recent P-wave tomographic model, which is based upon trans-dimensional and hierarchical Bayesian imaging. Our tomographic technique avoids explicit model parameterization, smoothing and damping. Spectral analyses reveal a multi-scale wavelength content and a power of heterogeneity that is three times larger than previous estimates. Inter alia, the resulting heterogeneity spectrum gives a more complete picture of the lowermost mantle and provides a bridge between the long-wavelength features obtained in global S-wave models and the short-scale dimensions of seismic scatterers. The evidence that we present for strong, multi-scale lowermost mantle heterogeneity has important implications for the nature of lower mantle dynamics and prescribes complex boundary conditions for Earth's geodynamo. PMID:26674394

  14. Spatial and temporal habitat partitioning by zooplankton in the Bornholm Basin (central Baltic Sea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulz, Jan; Peck, Myron A.; Barz, Kristina; Schmidt, Jörn Oliver; Hansen, Frank C.; Peters, Janna; Renz, Jasmin; Dickmann, Miriam; Mohrholz, Volker; Dutz, Jörg; Hirche, Hans-Jürgen

    2012-12-01

    The deep basins in the Baltic Sea such as the Bornholm Basin (BB) are subject to seasonal changes in the strength of physico-chemical stratification. These depth-related changes in key abiotic factors are strong drivers of habitat partitioning by the autochthonous zooplankton community. Species-specific ecophysiological preferences often result in both seasonal and inter-annual changes in vertical abundance that, when combined with depth-specific water currents, also lead to horizontal differences in spatial distribution. The present study documented the seasonal and depth-specific changes in the abundance and species composition of zooplankton in the BB based upon broad-scale survey data: 832 vertically-resolved (10 m) multinet samples collected at nine stations between March 2002 and May 2003. Changes in the zooplankton community were significantly correlated with changes in ambient hydrography. Each of five taxa (Bosmina coregoni maritima, Acartia spp., Pseudocalanus spp., Temora longicornis, Synchaeta spp.) contributed >10% to the zooplankton community composition. The appearance of cladocerans was mainly correlated with the phenology of thermocline development in the spring. The cladoceran B. coregoni maritima was a dominant member of this community during the warmest periods, preferring the surface waters above the thermocline. Copepods exhibited distinct, ontogenetic and seasonal changes in their distribution. The rotifers (Synchaeta sp.) were the most abundant zooplankton in May. Based on a multivariate approach and the evaluation of vertical distribution patterns, five major habitat utilisation modes were identified that were based, to a large extent, on the dynamics of thermal and haline stratification of the Baltic Sea. Our statistical analysis of one of the most thorough datasets collected on Baltic zooplankton in recent decades reveals some of the factors that make this stratified system highly dynamic with respect to the spatial overlap between

  15. Observations of near-bottom currents in Bornholm Basin, Slupsk Furrow and Gdansk Deep

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bulczak, A. I.; Rak, D.; Schmidt, B.; Beldowski, J.

    2016-06-01

    Dense bottom currents are responsible for transport of the salty inflow waters from the North Sea driving ventilation and renewal of Baltic deep waters. This study characterises dense currents in three deep locations of the Baltic Proper: Bornholm Basin (BB), Gdansk Basin (GB) and Slupsk Furrow (SF). These locations are of fundamental importance for the transport and pollution associated with chemical munitions deposited in BB and GB after 2nd World War. Of further importance the sub-basins are situated along the pathway of dense inflowing water.Current velocities were measured in the majority of the water column during regular cruises of r/v Oceania and r/v Baltica in 2001-2012 (38 cruises) by 307 kHz vessel mounted (VM), downlooking ADCP. Additionally, the high-resolution CTD and oxygen profiles were collected. Three moorings measured current velocity profiles in SF and GB over the summer 2012. In addition, temperature, salinity, oxygen and turbidity were measured at about 1 m above the bottom in GB. The results showed that mean current speed across the Baltic Proper was around 12 cm s-1 and the stronger flow was characteristic to the regions located above the sills, in the Bornholm and Slupsk Channels, reaching on average about 20 cm s-1. The results suggest that these regions are important for the inflow of saline waters into the eastern Baltic and are the areas of intense vertical mixing. The VM ADCP observations indicate that the average near-bottom flow across the basin can reach 35±6 cm s-1. The mooring observations also showed similar near-bottom flow velocities. However, they showed that the increased speed of the near-bottom layer occurred frequently in SF and GB during short time periods lasting for about few to several days or 10-20% of time. The observations showed that the bottom mixed layer occupies at least 10% of the water column and the turbulent mixing induced by near-bottom currents is likely to produce sediment resuspension and transport

  16. Biogeochemical implications of levee confinement in the lowermost Mississippi River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galler, J. J.; Bianchi, T. S.; Alison, M. A.; Wysocki, L. A.; Campanella, R.

    With the recent formation of the Center for River-Ocean Studies (CeROS) at Tulane University in Louisiana (see http://www.tulane.edu/~ceros) and the emerging state-federal partnership that is creating river diversions to combat coastal land loss, increased attention is being paid to the lowermost Mississippi River, from Baton Rouge to the Gulf of Mexico, as a critical juncture and storage area for sediment particles and bio-active compounds.CeROS scientists, working with the US. Geological Survey and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, have undertaken a detailed re-assessment of the channel floor and water column of this region using geophysical and biogeochemical data collection, combined with historical data sets.

  17. Clouds in the Tropical Lowermost Stratosphere Observed by ACE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sloan, J. J.; Galkina, I.; Sioris, C. E.; Nowlan, C. R.; McElroy, T.; Zou, J.; Hu, J.; Drummond, J. R.; McLinden, C. A.

    2008-12-01

    Evidence for the occurrence of cloud particles in the tropical lowermost stratosphere in the 2004-2007 period is presented. This study is based on measurements by the three Atmospheric Chemistry Experiment (ACE) instruments onboard SCI-SAT. The Vis & NIR Imagers are used to determine the presence of clouds and their top height. The Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) observations are used to determine the size distribution and composition of the aerosols. The FTS has a 4 km field-of-view. Measurements of Aerosol Extinction in the Stratosphere and Troposphere Retrieved by Occultation (MAESTRO) provide more precise altitude determination of the thermal tropopause and the cloud tops by virtue of its smaller FOV (~1 km). Clouds in the tropical lower stratosphere are a rare occurrence but April 2005 produced a few such cases, consistent with previous observations by OSIRIS. We discuss several individual case studies that demonstrate the presence of large particles (mode radius of ~8 microns) clearly above the tropopause.

  18. Determination of eddy diffusivity in the lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Peter, T.; Staehelin, J.; Wirth, V.; Hoor, P.; Fischer, H.

    2005-07-01

    We present a 2D-advection-diffusion model that simulates the main transport pathways influencing tracer distributions in the lowermost stratosphere (LMS). The model describes slow diabatic descent of aged stratospheric air, vertical (cross-isentropic) and horizontal (along isentropes) diffusion within the LMS and across the tropopause using equivalent latitude and potential temperature coordinates. Eddy diffusion coefficients parameterize the integral effect of dynamical processes leading to small scale turbulence and mixing. They were specified by matching model simulations to observed CO distributions. Interestingly, the model suggests mixing across isentropes to be more important than horizontal mixing across surfaces of constant equivalent latitude, shining new light on the interplay between various transport mechanisms in the LMS. The model achieves a good description of the small scale tracer features at the tropopause with squared correlation coefficients R2 = 0.72...0.94.

  19. Significant radiative impact of volcanic aerosol in the lowermost stratosphere.

    PubMed

    Andersson, Sandra M; Martinsson, Bengt G; Vernier, Jean-Paul; Friberg, Johan; Brenninkmeijer, Carl A M; Hermann, Markus; van Velthoven, Peter F J; Zahn, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Despite their potential to slow global warming, until recently, the radiative forcing associated with volcanic aerosols in the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) had not been considered. Here we study volcanic aerosol changes in the stratosphere using lidar measurements from the NASA CALIPSO satellite and aircraft measurements from the IAGOS-CARIBIC observatory. Between 2008 and 2012 volcanism frequently affected the Northern Hemisphere stratosphere aerosol loadings, whereas the Southern Hemisphere generally had loadings close to background conditions. We show that half of the global stratospheric aerosol optical depth following the Kasatochi, Sarychev and Nabro eruptions is attributable to LMS aerosol. On average, 30% of the global stratospheric aerosol optical depth originated in the LMS during the period 2008-2011. On the basis of the two independent, high-resolution measurement methods, we show that the LMS makes an important contribution to the overall volcanic forcing. PMID:26158244

  20. Significant radiative impact of volcanic aerosol in the lowermost stratosphere

    PubMed Central

    Andersson, Sandra M.; Martinsson, Bengt G.; Vernier, Jean-Paul; Friberg, Johan; Brenninkmeijer, Carl A. M.; Hermann, Markus; van Velthoven, Peter F. J.; Zahn, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Despite their potential to slow global warming, until recently, the radiative forcing associated with volcanic aerosols in the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) had not been considered. Here we study volcanic aerosol changes in the stratosphere using lidar measurements from the NASA CALIPSO satellite and aircraft measurements from the IAGOS-CARIBIC observatory. Between 2008 and 2012 volcanism frequently affected the Northern Hemisphere stratosphere aerosol loadings, whereas the Southern Hemisphere generally had loadings close to background conditions. We show that half of the global stratospheric aerosol optical depth following the Kasatochi, Sarychev and Nabro eruptions is attributable to LMS aerosol. On average, 30% of the global stratospheric aerosol optical depth originated in the LMS during the period 2008–2011. On the basis of the two independent, high-resolution measurement methods, we show that the LMS makes an important contribution to the overall volcanic forcing. PMID:26158244

  1. Scyphozoa in the Bornholm Basin (central Baltic Sea) The role of advection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barz, Kristina; Hinrichsen, Hans-Harald; Hirche, Hans-Jürgen

    2006-04-01

    The usual absence of ephyrae and late appearance of medusae of the Scyphozoa Aurelia aurita and Cyanea capillata in the Bornholm Basin (BB; central Baltic Sea) indicate that these species are not strobilating in the region and their presence depends on advection. To study their potential origin we compared drift from historically known strobilation areas derived from a circulation model with spatial distributions observed during 19 cruises in the BB during 2002 and 2003. The model results are in good accordance with the field observations. According to the model results inter-annual differences in the timing of first appearance and life stage at appearance of A. aurita were clearly related to differences in the hydrodynamic regime during the investigation periods. During the stagnation regime in 2002 young medusae occurred first in June in the BB. In contrast, in 2003 fast transport due to several inflow events advected ephyrae released between January and March in the western Baltic already in April to the BB. Although the Gullmar Fjord (western Sweden) is the nearest known strobilation area for C. capillata, the model did not support advection from there in numbers explaining the occurrence of this species in the BB in 2002 and 2003. If the model works adequately in this regions we have to assume that the Gullmar Fjord is not a main source region of C. capillata in the BB, but other strobilation areas in the Kattegat or the North Sea appear more important. Our results imply that advection and inflow events are critical for the occurrence and distribution of early stages of jellyfish in the central Baltic Sea. They demonstrate the potential of circulation models as tools to study the effect of long-range transport on the spatial composition of these organisms.

  2. Punctuated sand transport in the lowermost Mississippi River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nittrouer, Jeffrey A.; Mohrig, David; Allison, Mead

    2011-12-01

    Measurements of sand flux and water flow in the Mississippi River are presented for a portion of the system 35-50 km upstream from the head of its subaerial delta. These data are used to provide insight into how nonuniform flow conditions, present in the lower reaches of large alluvial rivers, affect the timing and magnitude of sand transport near the river outlet. Field surveys during both low and high water discharge include (1) sequential digital bathymetric maps defining mobile river bottom topography which were used to estimate bed material flux, (2) multiple water velocity profiles, and (3) multiple suspended sediment profiles collected using a point-integrated sampler. These data show that total sand transport increases by two orders of magnitude over the measured range in water discharge (11,300 to 38,400 m3 s-1). During low water discharge no sand is measured in suspension, and sand discharge via bed form migration is minimal. During high water discharge 54% of the sand discharge is measured in suspension while 46% of the sand discharge is part of bed form migration. The component of boundary shear stress associated with moving this sediment is estimated using a set of established sediment transport algorithms, and values for the total boundary shear stress are predicted by fitting logarithmic velocity functions to the measured profiles. The estimates of boundary shear stress, using measurements of suspended sand transport, bed form transport, and downstream oriented velocity profiles are internally consistent; moreover, the analyses show that boundary shear stress increases by nearly 10-fold over the measured water discharge range. We show how this increase in shear stress is consistent with backwater flow arising where the river approaches its outlet. The hydrodynamic properties of backwater flow affect the timing and magnitude of sand flux and produce punctuated sand transport through the lowermost Mississippi River. Our field data are used to evaluate

  3. Geologic and biostratigraphic framework of the non-marine Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary interval in western North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, D.J.

    1990-01-01

    Palynologically defined Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary sites in nonmarine rocks in western North America exhibit similar characteristics. All are marked by abrupt disappearance of the regional uppermost Cretaceous palynoflora at the level of an iridium anomaly; most also yeild shock-metamorphosed minerals. All are in coal-bearing, fluvial or paludal depositional settings, although the boundary horizon may be below, within, above, or at some stratigraphic distance from coal seams. At many sites the lowermost Tertiary beds contain assemblages overwhelmed by fern spores that, together with extinctions of some groups of angiosperms, are taken as evidence of regional devastation of terrestrial plant communities and subsequent recolonization by pioneer species. ?? 1990.

  4. Biostratigraphy of the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary in the Sirwan Valley (Sulaimani Region, Kurdistan, NE Iraq)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharbazheri, Khalid Mahmood; Ghafor, Imad Mahmood; Muhammed, Qahtan Ahmad

    2009-10-01

    The Cretaceous/Tertiary (K/T) boundary sequence, which crops out in the studied area is located within the High Folded Zone, in the Sirwan Valley, northeastern Iraq. These units mainly consist of flysch and flysch-type successions of thick clastic beds of Tanjero/Kolosh Formations. A detailed lithostratigraphic study is achieved on the outcropping uppermost part of the Upper Cretaceous successions (upper part of Tanjero Formation) and the lowermost part of the Kolosh Formation. On the basis of the identified planktonic foraminiferal assemblages, five biozones are recorded from the uppermost part of Tanjero Formation and four biozones from the lower part of the Kolosh Formation (Lower Paleocene) in the Sirwan section. The biostratigraphic correlations based on planktonic foraminiferal zonations showed a comparison between the biostratigraphic zones established in this study and other equivalents of the commonly used planktonic zonal scheme around the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary in and outside Iraq.

  5. The Lower Cretaceous Chinkeh Formation: A frontier-type play in the Liard basin of western Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Leckie, D.A. ); Potocki, D.J. ); Visser, K. )

    1991-08-01

    The Lower Cretaceous Liard basin in western Canada covers an area of 9,500 km{sup 2} (3,668 mi{sup 2}) but is relatively unexplored despite its size. The present-day expression of the basin, which formed during the latest Cretaceous to early Tertiary, trends north-south and is delineated by the outcrop of the coarse-clastic Upper Cretaceous Dunvegan Formation. The lowermost Cretaceous unit, herein named the Chinkeh Formation, is up to 32 m (105 ft) thick and unconformably overlies older Paleozoic strata. The Chinkeh Formation contains four major lithotypes: (1) conglomeratic breccia interpreted as debris-flow or talus deposits, (2) interbedded coal, carbonaceous as nonmarine valley fill or channel deposits, (3) conglomeratic lag related to marine deposits, (3) conglomeratic lag related to marine transgression, and (4) upward-coarsening sandstone interpreted as abandoned shoreline deposits. Cretaceous strata in the Liard basin have gave petroleum source-rock and reservoir potential, and hydrocarbons may be present in sandstone of the Chinkeh Formation. Potential play types include stratigraphic traps formed by incised-valley deposits and shallow-marine sandstone pinching out laterally into marine shales of the Garbutt Formation. A potential structural play may occur along the Bovie fault zone where reservoirs may abut against a shale seal on the eastern side of the fault. Potential source rocks include the lowermost Garbutt Formation and underlying Triassic Toad Garbutt formations. The Chinkeh Formation sandstone has porosity values of 8-18%.

  6. Paleomagnetism of the Cambrian Sediments in Bornholm (Denmark) and Southern Sweden and Implications for Paleogeography of Baltica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewandowski, M.; Abrahamsen, N.

    2001-12-01

    In Bornholm the Phanerozoic sedimentary succession overlying Precambrian basement starts with the Lower Cambrian (ca. 545 Ma) Nekso Sandstone Fm (NSF) that, in the earlier paleomagnetic analyses, have yielded characteristic magnetization (ChRM) similar to the Permian direction for Baltica. Here, we present paleomagnetic results from other Lower Cambrian formations in Bornholm (Balka Sandstone, Broens Odde siltstone) and in southern Sweden (Hardebega, Mickwitzia and Lingula Sandstones). Lithologically, most of these formations are very similar to the NSF and they are all considered stratigraphically younger. The intention was to check, whether a Permian paleomagnetic overprint occured on a regional scale and could it be attributed to secondary magnetic phases originating from fluids, which possibly traveled laterally along the contact between the basement and the Lower Cambrian sediments. In this report we show results of this regional test, followed by a comprehensive re-analysis of our Nekso data, including new results obtained after supplementary sampling and new petrologic information, which appeared recently. We have found that the NSF possessed a unique ChRM. The well-grouped and stable characteristic magnetization of the Nekso Sandstone contrasts with fairly chaotic, soft and badly preserved magnetization of the Balka, the Hardeberga, the Mickwitzia and the Lingulid sandstones of Bornholm and southern Sweden. A regional geological context, including the inferred diagenetic evolution of Lower Cambrian sediments, points to a syndepositional/early diagenetic origin of the characteristic remanence of the Nekso Sandstone, revealing a stable remanence applicable for plate tectonic interpretations. Similarity of the characteristic remanence of the NSF to the Permian direction for Baltica has been confirmed, but it is supposed to be casual, because of lack of any sign of a regional Permian remagnetization within the other Cambrian deposits of Southern Scandinavia

  7. Transport into the Northern Hemisphere lowermost stratosphere revealed by in situ tracer measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Eric A.; Moore, Fred L.; Elkins, James W.; Dutton, Geoffrey S.; Fahey, David W.; VöMel, Holger; Oltmans, Samuel J.; Rosenlof, Karen H.

    1999-11-01

    The Lightweight Airborne Chromatograph Experiment (LACE) has made in situ measurements of several long-lived trace gases in the upper troposphere and lower to middle stratosphere as part of the Observations of the Middle Stratosphere (OMS) balloon program. The tracers measured by LACE include several photolytic species (CFC-11, CFC-12, and halon-1211) as well as SF6. LACE measurements of these long-lived tracers as well as nearly simultaneous measurements of water vapor and CO2 are used to investigate transport into the lowermost stratosphere, a region where few in situ measurements exist. The measured photolytic species and water vapor are used in a simple mass balance calculation to estimate the mixture of tropospheric and overworld (θ>380 K) air in the lowermost stratosphere. In the northern midlatitudes during September 1996, most of the air in the lowermost stratosphere sampled at the flight location (34.5°N) was transported quasi-isentropically from the troposphere. Measurements from both a May 1998 midlatitude flight and a June 1997 high-latitude flight (64.5°N) revealed the air sampled in the lowermost stratosphere to be dominated by downward advection from the overworld. Atmospheric SF6 and CO2 can uniquely reveal timescales and spatial scales of transport due to these species' large growth rates and subsequent latitudinal surface and free tropospheric gradients. Measurements in the lowermost stratosphere from the September northern midlatitude flight coupled with surface measurements of these species revealed a transport timescale of no more than 1.5 months from the surface to the lowermost stratosphere. The SF6 and CO2 mixing ratios were also consistent with mostly Northern Hemisphere tropospheric air in the lowermost stratosphere. These results point out the usefulness of high-resolution in situ measurements of long-lived tracers to help determine timescales and spatial scales of transport in the region of the upper troposphere and lowermost

  8. Palynological evidence of effects of the terminal Cretaceous event on terrestrial floras in western North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nichols, Douglas J.; Farley Fleming, R.; Frederiksen, Norman O.

    New and previously published palynomorph distribution data on 225 taxa from uppermost Cretaceous (K) and lowermost Tertiary (T) nonmarine strata from New Mexico to Arctic Canada and Alaska were used to evaluate the effects of the terminal Cretaceous event (TCE) on terrestrial plant life. Analyses considered presence/absence, relative abundance, species diversity, and endemism, and employed Q-mode cluster analysis. The latest Cretaceous palynoflora showed gradual, continuous variation in composition from paleolatitudes (pl) 45° to 85° N. Palynofloristic subprovinces are not easily distinguished empirically, but three are recognizable quantitatively. Abrupt disappearance of many distinctive species marked the K-T boundary, and the earliest Tertiary palynoflora was considerably reduced in diversity. However, most regionally distributed taxa, and many endemic taxa of the polar and midlatitude subprovinces, survived the TCE and three subprovinces are recognizable in the same geographic positions as in the latest Cretaceous. Relative abundances of pteridophytes and gymnosperms were slightly greater in the early Tertiary than in the latest Cretaceous, probably due in part to change in sedimentary regime, but thermophilic angiosperm taxa persisted at least as far north as pl 60° N. These data support the hypothesis that a short-lived but profound ecological crisis at the end of the Cretaceous resulted in major reorganization of the flora. The data are inconsistent with gradual climatic deterioration. Extinction was greater among angiosperms than among gymnosperms or pteridophytes, but whether or not the entire flora suffered a mass extinction remains debatable.

  9. Deformation of the lowermost mantle from seismic anisotropy.

    PubMed

    Nowacki, Andy; Wookey, James; Kendall, J-Michael

    2010-10-28

    The lowermost part of the Earth's mantle-known as D″-shows significant seismic anisotropy, the variation of seismic wave speed with direction. This is probably due to deformation-induced alignment of MgSiO(3)-post-perovskite (ppv), which is believed to be the main mineral phase present in the region. If this is the case, then previous measurements of D″ anisotropy, which are generally made in one direction only, are insufficient to distinguish candidate mechanisms of slip in ppv because the mineral is orthorhombic. Here we measure anisotropy in D″ beneath North and Central America, where material from subducting oceanic slabs impinges on the core-mantle boundary, using shallow as well as deep earthquakes to increase the azimuthal coverage in D″. We make more than 700 individual measurements of shear wave splitting in D″ in three regions from two different azimuths in each case. We show that the previously assumed case of vertical transverse isotropy (where wave speed shows no azimuthal variation) is not possible, and that more complicated mechanisms must be involved. We test the fit of different MgSiO(3)-ppv deformation mechanisms to our results and find that shear on (001) is most consistent with observations and the expected shear above the core-mantle boundary beneath subduction zones. With new models of mantle flow, or improved experimental determination of the dominant ppv slip systems, this method will allow us to map deformation at the core-mantle boundary and link processes in D″, such as plume initiation, to the rest of the mantle. PMID:20981097

  10. Transport in the Subtropical Lowermost Stratosphere during CRYSTAL-FACE

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pittman, Jasna V.; Weinstock, elliot M.; Oglesby, Robert J.; Sayres, David S.; Smith, Jessica B.; Anderson, James G.; Cooper, Owen R.; Wofsy, Steven C.; Xueref, Irene; Gerbig, Cristoph; Daube, Bruce C.; Richard, Erik C.; Ridley, Brian A.; Weinheimer, Andrew J.; Loewenstein, Max; Jost, Hans-Jurg; Lopez, Jimena P.; Mahoney, Michael J.; Thompson, Thomas L.; Hargrove, William W.; Hoffman, Forrest M.

    2007-01-01

    We use in situ measurements of water vapor (H2O), ozone (O3), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), nitric oxide (NO), and total reactive nitrogen (NO(y)) obtained during the CRYSTAL-FACE campaign in July 2002 to study summertime transport in the subtropical lowermost stratosphere. We use an objective methodology to distinguish the latitudinal origin of the sampled air masses despite the influence of convection, and we calculate backward trajectories to elucidate their recent geographical history. The methodology consists of exploring the statistical behavior of the data by performing multivariate clustering and agglomerative hierarchical clustering calculations, and projecting cluster groups onto principal component space to identify air masses of like composition and hence presumed origin. The statistically derived cluster groups are then examined in physical space using tracer-tracer correlation plots. Interpretation of the principal component analysis suggests that the variability in the data is accounted for primarily by the mean age of air in the stratosphere, followed by the age of the convective influence, and lastly by the extent of convective influence, potentially related to the latitude of convective injection [Dessler and Sherwuud, 2004]. We find that high-latitude stratospheric air is the dominant source region during the beginning of the campaign while tropical air is the dominant source region during the rest of the campaign. Influence of convection from both local and non-local events is frequently observed. The identification of air mass origin is confirmed with backward trajectories, and the behavior of the trajectories is associated with the North American monsoon circulation.

  11. Geochemistry and petrogenesis of Mesoproterozoic A-type granitoids from the Danish island of Bornholm, southern Fennoscandia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johansson, Åke; Waight, Tod; Andersen, Tom; Simonsen, Siri L.

    2016-02-01

    Granitoids and gneisses from the Danish island of Bornholm have been investigated using whole rock geochemistry, Sr and Nd isotope geochemistry and Hf isotopes in zircon. Recent U-Pb dating shows that the rocks were formed during a short time interval at 1.45 to 1.46 Ga, penecontemporaneous with ongoing deformation. The strong similarity in geochemical signatures indicate that they all belong to a single igneous suite composed of alkali-calcic biotite-hornblende quartz monzonites to more evolved biotite granites, albeit with an apparent gap in SiO2 content at around 70 wt%, dividing the suite into an intermediate and a felsic part. These dominantly metaluminous rocks are strongly ferroan and potassic, and with highly elevated concentrations of many trace elements, traits that are typical for A-type granitoids. The presence of magnetite and titanite indicates relatively oxidized compositions, and Nb/Y ratios designate them to the A2 subtype. Initial whole rock εNd values range between + 1 and - 2 (with one outlier at + 4), and initial zircon εHf values between + 3 and - 4. These values may be explained by melting of relatively juvenile crust similar to that forming the Transscandinavian Igneous Belt alone, but the spread in Hf and Nd isotope compositions to values overlapping with the Svecofennian mantle at 1.45 Ga suggests involvement of a mantle-derived component. This indicates the magmatism was associated with juvenile crustal growth. There are no systematic differences in isotope or trace element characteristics between the orthogneisses and the less deformed granitoids, suggesting similar origins for both rock types, and no systematic changes in isotopic composition with SiO2 concentration. Trace element compositions indicate a within-plate setting, similar to other 1.45 Ga granites in southwest Fennoscandia, in spite of the close relation between magmatism and deformation on Bornholm. We therefore suggest intracratonic A-type magmatism within an active

  12. Hydrology of the uppermost Cretaceous and the lowermost Paleocene rocks in the Hilight oil field, Campbell County, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lowry, Marlin E.

    1973-01-01

    The lithologic equivalents of the Fox Hills Sandstone, Lance Formation, and the Tullock member of the Fort Union Formation, as mapped on the east side of the Powder River Basin, can be recognized throughout the basin; however, the formations are in hydraulic connection and cannot be treated as separate aquifers. Recharge to the Lance-Fox Hills aquifer in the Hilight oil field is largely by vertical movement; there is no recharge from the Lance and Fox Hills outcrops on the east side of the basin to the formations in the Hilight area. At the and of the central Hilight water-flood project, the maximum possible drawdown resulting from the pumping of any one well at a distance of l0 miles from the pumped well, would be about 15 feet, if the projected pumping were evenly distributed among the project wells. Within a few years after pumping has ceased, water in the project wells will approach the levels present before pumping began. The only irreversible effect of pumping will be the compaction of shale, with attendant subsidence, because the water derived from the shale probably will not be replaced.

  13. A New 2D-Advection-Diffusion Model Simulating Trace Gas Distributions in the Lowermost Stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Peter, T.; Wirth, V.; Fischer, H.; Hoor, P.

    2004-12-01

    Tracer distributions in the lowermost stratosphere are affected by both, transport (advective and non-advective) and in situ sources and sinks. They influence ozone photochemistry, radiative forcing, and heating budgets. In-situ measurements of long-lived species during eight measurement campaigns revealed relatively simple behavior of the tracers in the lowermost stratosphere when represented in an equivalent-latitude versus potential temperature framework. We here present a new 2D-advection-diffusion model that simulates the main transport pathways influencing the tracer distributions in the lowermost stratosphere. The model includes slow diabatic descent of aged stratospheric air and vertical and/or horizontal diffusion across the tropopause and within the lowermost stratosphere. The diffusion coefficients used in the model represent the combined effects of different processes with the potential of mixing tropospheric air into the lowermost stratosphere such as breaking Rossby and gravity waves, deep convection penetrating the tropopause, turbulent diffusion, radiatively driven upwelling etc. They were specified by matching model simulations to observed distributions of long-lived trace gases such as CO and N2O obtained during the project SPURT. The seasonally conducted campaigns allow us to study the seasonal dependency of the diffusion coefficients. Despite its simplicity the model yields a surprisingly good description of the small scale features of the measurements and in particular of the observed tracer gradients at the tropopause. The correlation coefficients between modeled and measured trace gas distributions were up to 0.95. Moreover, mixing across isentropes appears to be more important than mixing across surfaces of constant equivalent latitude (or PV). With the aid of the model, the distribution of the fraction of tropospheric air in the lowermost stratosphere can be determined.

  14. Cretaceous polar climates

    SciTech Connect

    Ziegler, A.M.; Horrell, M.A.; Lottes, A.L.; Gierlowski, T.C.

    1988-01-01

    The Cretaceous, like most Phanerozooic periods, was characterized by ice-free poles. Some still argue that the glacier and sea ice were there, and that the tillites, etc, have been eroded or remain undiscovered. However, diverse floras, dense forests, coal-forming cypress swamps, and dinosaurs, crocodilians, and lungfish are known from areas that were certainly at 75/sup 0/-80/sup 0/ north and south paleolatitude in the Cretaceous, implying that the coastal basins did not experience hard freezes. No deep marine connections to the North Pole existed in the Cretaceous, so oceanic polar heat transport can be discounted. However, the five north-south trending epeiric or rift-related seaways that connected or nearly connected the Tethys to the Arctic would have dampened the seasonal temperature cycle, bringing maritime climates deep into the North American and Eurasian continents and, more importantly, would have served as an energy source and channel for winter storms, much as the Gulf Stream does today. Cyclones have a natural tendency to move poleward, because of the increase in the Coriolis Paramteter, and they transport both sensible and latent heat. The coastal regions of the relatively warm polar ocean in the Cretaceous would have received continuous precipitation during the winter because cyclones would be entering from as many as five directions. Coastal rainfall would also have been abundant in the summer but for a different reason; the land-sea temperature profile would reverse, with the warm land surface drawing in moisture, while clear ice-free conditions over the ocean would allow for solar warming.

  15. Cretaceous polar climates

    SciTech Connect

    Ziegler, A.M.; Horrell, M.A.; Lottes, A.L.; Gierlowski, T.C.

    1988-02-01

    The Cretaceous, like most Phanerozoic periods, was characterized by ice-free poles. Some still argue that the glaciers and sea ice were there, and that the tillites, etc, have been eroded or remain undiscovered. However, diverse floras, dense forests, and coal-forming cypress swamps, and dinosaurs, crocodilians, and lungfish are known from areas that were certainly at 75/degree/-80/degree/ north and south paleolatitude in the Cretaceous, implying that the coastal basins did not experience hard freezes. No deep marine connections to the North Pole existed in the Cretaceous, so oceanic polar heat transport can be discounted. However, the five north-south trending epeiric or rift-related seaways that connected or nearly connected the Tethys to the Arctic would have dampened the seasonal temperature cycle, bring maritime climates deep into the North American and Eurasian continents and, more importantly, would have served as an energy source and channel for winter storms, much as the Gulf Stream does today. Cyclones have a natural tendency to move poleward, because of the increase in the Coriolis Parameter, and they transport both sensible and latent heat. The coastal regions of the relatively warm polar ocean in the Cretaceous would have received continuous precipitation during the winter because cyclones would be entering from as many as five directions. Coastal rainfall would also have been abundant in the summer but for a different reason; the land-sea temperature profile would reverse, with the warm land surface drawing in moisture, while clear ice-free conditions over the ocean would allow for solar warming.

  16. Magnetostratigraphy of the Lowermost Paleocene Fort Union Formation in the Williston Basin of North Dakota: Base of a Terrestrial Reference Section for Early Cenozoic Global Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peppe, D. J.; Evans, D. D.

    2006-05-01

    Within the North Dakota Little Missouri Badlands, a continuous succession of Cretaceous through lowermost Eocene age sediments exposes a nearly complete terrestrial Paleocene record. Using the K-T boundary as the basal datum, a ca.180 meter composite section of the lowermost Fort Union Formation has been constructed. Paleomagnetic samples that have been analyzed from this section demonstrate a series of geomagnetic reversals that can be correlated from C29r through C28n of the Geomagnetic Polarity Time Scale. Based on these paleomagnetic data, the mean sedimentation rates during the interval from the K-T boundary to the top of 28r are estimated to be ca. 100 m/Myr. These data have allowed us to calibrate the two tongues of the marine Cannonball Member to within C29n and C28r respectively, and identify a major change in the composition and dominant taxa in the megafloral record near the end of C28r. One potential implication of this result, pending further data analysis and correlations to fossil-bearing sections, is the temporal restriction of the Puercan-Torrejonian 1 North American Land Mammal "Ages" (NALMAs) by nearly a factor of two relative to previous estimates (i.e. from ca. 2 Myr to ca. 1 Myr). This would in turn suggest that post-extinction mammal speciation occurred twice as fast as previously supposed. The ultimate aim of this research is to develop a high-precision chronostratigraphic reference section for the Paleocene of the Rocky Mountain Region of North America using lithostratigraphy, magnetostratigraphy, pollen and megafloral biostratigraphy, chemostratigraphy, and chronostratigraphy, that can be used to determine the temporal extent of floral and faunal radiation after the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinctions, and to assess patterns of floral and faunal diversity and composition in response to numerous climatic changes. Furthermore, we hope to use this chronostratigraphic section for comparisons with contemporaneous sections worldwide, which will

  17. Consequences of artificial deepwater ventilation in the Bornholm Basin for oxygen conditions, cod reproduction and benthic biomass - a model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stigebrandt, A.; Rosenberg, R.; Råman Vinnå, L.; Ödalen, M.

    2014-07-01

    We develop and use a circulation model to estimate hydrographical and ecological changes in the isolated basin water of the Bornholm Basin. By pumping well oxygenated so-called winter water, residing beneath the level of the summer thermocline, to the greatest depth of the basin, where it is forced to mix with the resident water, the rate of density reduction should increase and thereby the frequency of intrusions of new oxygen-rich deepwater. We show that pumping 1000 m3 s-1 should increase the rates of water exchange and oxygen supply by 2.5 and 3 times, respectively. The CRV (Cod Reproduction Volume), the volume of water in the isolated basin meeting the requirements for successful cod reproduction (S > 11, O2 > 2 mL L-1), should every year be greater than 54 km3, which is an immense improvement since it in certain years is currently much less. Anoxic bottoms should no longer occur in the basin and hypoxic events will become rare. This should permit extensive colonization of fauna on the earlier periodically anoxic bottoms. Increased biomass of benthic fauna should also mean increased food supply to economically valuable demersal fish like cod and flatfish. In addition, the bioturbation activity and re-oxygenation of the sediments should lead to increased phosphorus retention by the sediments.

  18. Consequences of artificial deepwater ventilation in the Bornholm Basin for oxygen conditions, cod reproduction and benthic biomass - a model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stigebrandt, A.; Rosenberg, R.; Råman Vinnå, L.; Ödalen, M.

    2015-01-01

    We develop and use a circulation model to estimate hydrographical and ecological changes in the isolated basin water of the Bornholm Basin. By pumping well-oxygenated so-called winter water to the greatest depth, where it is forced to mix with the resident water, the rate of deepwater density reduction increases as well as the frequency of intrusions of new oxygen-rich deepwater. We show that pumping 1000 m3 s-1 should increase the rates of water exchange and oxygen supply by 2.5 and 3 times, respectively. The CRV (cod reproduction volume), the volume of water in the isolated basin meeting the requirements for successful cod reproduction (S > 11, O2 > 2 mL L-1), should every year be greater than 54 km3, which is an immense improvement, since it has been much less in certain years. Anoxic bottoms should no longer occur in the basin, and hypoxic events will become rare. This should permit extensive colonization of fauna on the earlier periodically anoxic bottoms. Increased biomass of benthic fauna should also mean increased food supply to economically valuable demersal fish like cod and flatfish. In addition, re-oxygenation of the sediments should lead to increased phosphorus retention by the sediments.

  19. Cretaceous eustasy revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haq, Bilal U.

    2014-02-01

    Eustatic sea-level changes of the Cretaceous are reevaluated based on a synthesis of global stratigraphic data. A new terminology for local/regional or relative sea-level changes (eurybatic shifts) is proposed to distinguish them from global (eustatic) sea-level changes, with the observation that all measures of sea-level change in any given location are eurybatic, even when they include a strong global signal. Solid-earth factors that influence inherited regional topography and thus modify physical measures of amplitude of the sea-level rises and falls locally are reviewed. One of these factors, dynamic topography (surface expression of mass flow in the upper mantle on land- and seascapes), is considered most pertinent in altering local measures of amplitude of sea-level events on third-order time scales (0.5-3.0 Myr). Insights gained from these models have led to the reconciliation of variance between amplitude estimates of eurybatic shifts in any given region and global measures of eustatic changes. Global estimates of third-order events can only be guesstimated at best by averaging the eurybatic data from widely distributed time-synchronous events. Revised curves for both long-term and short-term sea-level variations are presented for the Cretaceous Period. The curve representing the long-term envelope shows that average sea levels throughout the Cretaceous remained higher than the present day mean sea level (75-250 m above PDMSL). Sea level reached a trough in mid Valanginian (~ 75 m above PDMSL), followed by two high points, the first in early Barremian (~ 160-170 m above PDMSL) and the second, the highest peak of the Cretaceous, in earliest Turonian (~ 240-250 m above PDMSL). The curve also displays two ~ 20 Myr-long periods of relatively high and stable sea levels (Aptian through early Albian and Coniacian through Campanian). The short-term curve identifies 58 third-order eustatic events in the Cretaceous, most have been documented in several basins, while

  20. Is There Evidence of Convectively Injected Water Vapor in the Lowermost Stratosphere Over Boulder, Colorado?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurst, D. F.; Rosenlof, K. H.; Davis, S. M.; Hall, E. G.; Jordan, A. F.

    2014-12-01

    Anderson et al. (2012) reported the frequent presence of convectively injected water vapor in the lowermost stratosphere over North America during summertime, based on aircraft measurements. They asserted that enhanced catalytic ozone destruction within these wet stratospheric air parcels presents a concern for UV dosages in populated areas, especially if the frequency of deep convective events increases. Schwartz et al.(2013) analyzed 8 years of more widespread Aura Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) measurements of lower stratospheric water vapor over North America and concluded that anomalously wet (>8 ppm) air parcels were present only 2.5% of the time during July and August. However, given the 3-km vertical resolution of MLS water vapor retrievals in the lowermost stratosphere, thin wet layers deposited by overshooting convection may be present but not readily detectable by MLS. Since 1980 the balloon-borne NOAA frost point hygrometer (FPH) has produced nearly 400 high quality water vapor profiles over Boulder, Colorado, at 5-m vertical resolution from the surface to the middle stratosphere. The 34-year record of high-resolution FPH profiles obtained over Boulder during summer months is evaluated for evidence of convectively injected water vapor in the lowermost stratosphere. A number of approaches are used to assess the contributions of deep convection to the Boulder stratospheric water vapor record. The results are compared to those based on MLS profiles over Boulder and the differences are discussed. Anderson, J. G., D. M. Wilmouth, J. B. Smith, and D. S. Sayres (2012), UV dosage levels in summer: Increased risk of ozone loss from convectively injected water vapor, Science, 337(6096), 835-839, doi:10.1126/science.1222978. Schwartz, M. J., W. G. Read, M. L. Santee, N. J. Livesey, L. Froidevaux, A. Lambert, and G. L. Manney (2013), Convectively injected water vapor in the North American summer lowermost stratosphere, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 2316-2321, doi:10

  1. Cretaceous source rocks in Pakistan

    SciTech Connect

    Kari, I.B. )

    1993-02-01

    Pakistan is located at the converging boundaries of the Indian, Arabian, and Eurasian plates. Evolution of this tectonic setting has provided an array of environmental habitats for deposition of petroleum source rocks and development of structural forms. The potential Cretaceous source rocks in Central and South Indus Basin are spread over an area of about 300,000 km[sup 2]. With 2% cutoff on Total Organic Carbon, the average source rock thickness is 30-50 m, which is estimated to have generated more than 200 billion bbl of oil equivalent. To date, production of more than 30,000 bbl of oil and about 1200 million ft[sup 3] of gas per day can be directly attributed to Cretaceous source. This basin was an area of extensional tectonics during the Lower to Middle Cretaceous associated with slightly restricted circulation of the sea waters at the north-western margin of Indian Plate. Lower Cretaceous source rocks (Sembar Formation) were deposited while the basin was opening up and anoxia was prevailing. Similarly Middle to Upper Cretaceous clastics were deposited in setting favorable for preservation of organic matter. The time and depth of burial of the Cretaceous source material and optimum thermal regime have provided the requisite maturation level for generation of hydrocarbons in the basin. Central Indus basin is characterized by Cretaceous source rocks mature for gas generation. However, in South Indus Basin Cretaceous source rocks lie within the oil window in some parts and have gone past it in others.

  2. Seismic evidence for an Iceland thermo-chemical plume in the Earth's lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Yumei; Wen, Lianxing; Capdeville, Yann; Zhao, Liang

    2015-05-01

    We constrain the geographic extent, geometry and velocity structure of the seismic anomaly near the Earth's core-mantle boundary (CMB) beneath Iceland, based on travel time and three-dimensional waveform modeling of the seismic data sampling the lowermost mantle beneath Iceland. Our analysis suggests a mushroom-shaped low velocity anomaly situated in the lowermost mantle beneath Iceland surrounded by a high velocity province. The best fitting mushroom-shaped model is 600 km high and has a stem with a radius of 350 km in the lowermost 250 km of the mantle and a cap with increasing radii from 550 km at 250 km above the CMB to 650 km at 600 km above the CMB. The shear velocity structure varies from 0% at the top to - 3% at 250 km above the CMB and to - 6% at the CMB. These inferred seismic features, in combination with the previous evidence of existence of ultra-low velocity zones at the base of the mantle beneath the region, suggest that Iceland represents a thermo-chemical plume generated by interaction of downwelling and a localized chemical anomaly at the base of the mantle.

  3. Transport Timescales in the Lowermost Stratosphere: Observations and Results from ECHAM5/MESSy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoor, P.; Fischer, H.; Joeckel, P.; Lelieveld, J.; Brenninkmeijer, C.; Gurk, C.; Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Krebsbach, M.; Schiller, C.; Bruehl, C.; Steil, B.

    2006-12-01

    We present a comparison of high resolution in-situ measurements in the lowermost stratosphere over Europe and model results obtained with the new chemistry circulation model ECHAM5/MESSy. Model calculations were performed using T42 spectral resolution and 90 vertical levels from the surface up to 80 km providing a vertical resolution of about 600 m in the extratropical lowermost stratosphere. The model was nudged in the troposphere up to 200 hPa using operational ECMWF data. We compare in particular CO, CO2, N2O and O3 data with in-situ observations from SPURT between 2001 and 2003 with corresponding model data interpolated in time and space. Trace gas profiles and correlations of in-situ observations and modelled data show a remarkable agreement. To deduce transport time scales we compare probability density functions of trace gases in different layers relative to the dynamical tropopause and on N2O-isopleths. To extend the data to a global scale and investigate transport time scales we will use NMVOC data from CARIBIC and compare them with model derived data. The CO2 seasonal cycle and its propagation in the stratosphere provides further information on transport timescales from the tropopause to the lowermost stratosphere. The good agreement between the model and the SPURT observations allows to investigate transport timescales in the UTLS region on global scales.

  4. Efficacy of the post-perovskite phase as an explanation for lowermost-mantle seismic properties.

    PubMed

    Wookey, James; Stackhouse, Stephen; Kendall, J-Michael; Brodholt, John; Price, G David

    2005-12-15

    Constraining the chemical, rheological and electromagnetic properties of the lowermost mantle (D'') is important to understand the formation and dynamics of the Earth's mantle and core. To explain the origin of the variety of characteristics of this layer observed with seismology, a number of theories have been proposed, including core-mantle interaction, the presence of remnants of subducted material and that D'' is the site of a mineral phase transformation. This final possibility has been rejuvenated by recent evidence for a phase change in MgSiO3 perovskite (thought to be the most prevalent phase in the lower mantle) at near core-mantle boundary temperature and pressure conditions. Here we explore the efficacy of this 'post-perovskite' phase to explain the seismic properties of the lowermost mantle through coupled ab initio and seismic modelling of perovskite and post-perovskite polymorphs of MgSiO3, performed at lowermost-mantle temperatures and pressures. We show that a post-perovskite model can explain the topography and location of the D'' discontinuity, apparent differences in compressional- and shear-wave models and the observation of a deeper, weaker discontinuity. Furthermore, our calculations show that the regional variations in lower-mantle shear-wave anisotropy are consistent with the proposed phase change in MgSiO3 perovskite. PMID:16355222

  5. Reconstruction of climate and environmental changes in the Bornholm Basin during the last 6000 years, based on foraminiferal assemblages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Binczewska, Anna; Polovodova Asteman, Irina; Moros, Matthias; Sławińska, Joanna

    2016-04-01

    The Baltic Sea is the largest brackish sea in the world connected to the Atlantic Ocean through the narrow and shallow Danish Straits. The hydrography of the Baltic Sea is strongly dependent on inflows from the North Sea and its environmental conditions are influenced by meteorological and anthropogenic factors. To improve our understanding of the natural variability and forcing factors driving changes in the Baltic ecosystem, detailed analyses of palaeoecological archives are needed. Here we present a high-resolution study of foraminiferal assemblages together with sediment geochemistry (LOI, TOC, TIC, CNS) from a 8-m long gravity core (GC) and a 42-cm long multi core (MUC) taken in the Bornholm Basin in 2013. Both cores were investigated in order to reconstruct bottom water mass variability during the mid- and late Holocene. Cores were dated by AMS 14C (mostly on Macoma balthica shells), 210Pb and 137Cs. Age-model allowed us to place variability of foraminiferal assemblages in time and link them with the Holocene climate extremes and the Major Baltic Inflows (MBIs). High absolute abundances (ind./g wet sed.) of foraminifera are found within a core interval corresponding to the Dark Ages and the Medieval Warm Period (~AD 400-1200). The Little Ice Age is represented by rare to absent foraminiferal shells, while significant changes of foraminiferal abundances occur in the lower part of core(~ BC 2050-2995). The dominant species found in both cores are Cribroelphidium excavatum, C. excavatum f. clavatum, C. albiumbilicatum and C. incertum, all adapted to an ecologically unstable environment with high fluctuations of salinity and oxygen. The arenaceous species Reophax dentaliniformis strongly occurs at ~ AD 1450-1600, where calcareous species were rare. Presence of agglutinated foraminifera and prevailing small size of individuals in all studied material suggest bottom water undersaturation with respect to calcium carbonate. In the Baltic Sea, bottom waters

  6. Improved P-wave Tomography of the Lowermost Mantle and Consequences for Mantle and Core Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkalcic, H.; Young, M. K.; Muir, J. B.

    2014-12-01

    The core mantle boundary (CMB) separates the liquid iron core from the slowly-convecting solid mantle. The ~300 km thick barrier above the boundary has proven to be far more than a simple dividing layer; rather it is a complex region with a range of proposed phenomena such as thermal and compositional heterogeneity, partial melting and anisotropy. Characterizing the heterogeneity in the lowermost mantle through seismic tomography will prove crucial to accurately understanding key geodynamical processes within our planet, not just in the mantle above, but also a possible "mapping" onto the inner core boundary (ICB) through a thermochemical convection in the outer core, which in turn might control the growth of the inner core (e.g. Aubert et al., 2008; Gubbins et al., 2011). Here we obtain high-resolution compressional wave (P-wave) velocity images and uncertainty estimates for the lowermost mantle using travel time data collected by waveform cross-correlation. Strikingly, independent datasets of seismic phases that "see" the lowermost mantle in a different way yield similar P-wave velocity distributions at lower harmonic degrees. We also consider the effect of CMB topography. The images obtained are void of explicit model parameterization and regularization (through transdimensional Bayesian tomography) and contain features on multiple spatial scales. Subsequent spectral analyses reveal a power of heterogeneity three times larger than previous estimates. The P-wave tomograms of the lowermost mantle contain the harmonic degree 2-structure, similar to tomographic images derived from S-wave data (e.g. Ritsema et al. 2011), but with additional higher harmonic degrees (notably, 3-7). In other words, the heterogeneity size is uniformly distributed between about 500 and 6000 km. Inter alia, the resulting heterogeneity spectrum provides a bridge between the long-wavelength features of most global models and the very short-scale dimensions of scatterers mapped in independent

  7. Mesorbitolina (Cretaceous larger foraminifera) from the Yezo Group in Hokkaido, Japan and its stratigraphic and paleobiogeographic significance

    PubMed Central

    Iba, Yasuhiro; Sano, Shin-ichi

    2006-01-01

    In this paper, we describe an Aptian (Early Cretaceous) larger foraminiferal species Orbitolina (Mesorbitolina) parva from the limestone olistoliths in the lower part of the Yezo Group in the Yubari–Ashibetsu area, central Hokkaido and from limestone pebbles in the lowermost part of the Yezo Group in the Nakagawa area, northern Hokkaido. This is the first report of this species from the circum-North Pacific regions. Based on its occurrences, the shallow-marine carbonates, re-deposited in the lower part of the Yezo Group, are precisely assigned in age to the Late Aptian. Comparison of the lower part of the Yezo Group in central and northern Hokkaido indicates differences of the Aptian–Albian depositional history between the two areas. This study reveals that after Late Aptian, Mesogean key taxa (typical Cretaceous Tethyan biota) demised in the Northwest Pacific. PMID:25792785

  8. Using mineral elasticities to link geodynamics and seismic observations in the lowermost mantle.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wookey, J.; Walker, A. M.; Nowacki, A.; Walpole, J.; Kendall, J.

    2012-12-01

    The base of the mantle is the site of the most significant change in physical parameters in the Earth system: the core-mantle boundary. As the region which mediates core-mantle interactions and acts as the lower boundary for mantle convection understanding its properties is key to understanding the broader dynamics of the mantle. One issue is the participation of material in the lowermost mantle (often referred to as D″) in whole mantle convection. This is exemplified by the questions outstanding about the origin of the large, low shear-velocity provinces observed beneath Africa and the Pacific. While the consensus view is that these are long-term, stable features which are compositionally distinct (lending them higher density than their surroundings), a dominantly thermal origin (whereby they are lower density transitory upwellings, such as clustered plumes) is favoured by a number of very recent studies. Observations of seismic anisotropy (which results from the deformation of mantle minerals) are key to understanding the geodynamic nature of the lowermost mantle. There are a broad set of observations of D″ anisotropy, ranging from tomographic to waveform studies which allow resolution of a more general anisotropy style. These observations show variation at a range of length scales, with some regions apparently very complex. To interpret them robustly in terms of geodynamics requires significant knowledge of lowermost mantle mineralogy. Mineralogical information comes from both laboratory experiments and theoretical calculations. In addition to single-crystal elasticities of relevant mantle phases we also need information about deformation mechanisms in order to calculate the aggregate seismic anisotropy. While candidate determinations of these latter parameters exist there is no consensus as to the dominant mechanism for the mineral likely to be most significant for the lowermost mantle region - post-perovskite. In order to test these candidates we have

  9. Seasonal Variability of Middle Latitude Ozone in the Lowermost Stratosphere Derived from Probability Distribution Functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rood, Richard B.; Douglass, Anne R.; Cerniglia, Mark C.; Sparling, Lynn C.; Nielsen, J. Eric

    1999-01-01

    We present a study of the distribution of ozone in the lowermost stratosphere with the goal of characterizing the observed variability. The air in the lowermost stratosphere is divided into two population groups based on Ertel's potential vorticity at 300 hPa. High (low) potential vorticity at 300 hPa indicates that the tropopause is low (high), and the identification of these two groups is made to account for the dynamic variability. Conditional probability distribution functions are used to define the statistics of the ozone distribution from both observations and a three-dimensional model simulation using winds from the Goddard Earth Observing System Data Assimilation System for transport. Ozone data sets include ozonesonde observations from northern midlatitude stations (1991-96) and midlatitude observations made by the Halogen Occultation Experiment (HALOE) on the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) (1994- 1998). The conditional probability distribution functions are calculated at a series of potential temperature surfaces spanning the domain from the midlatitude tropopause to surfaces higher than the mean tropical tropopause (approximately 380K). The probability distribution functions are similar for the two data sources, despite differences in horizontal and vertical resolution and spatial and temporal sampling. Comparisons with the model demonstrate that the model maintains a mix of air in the lowermost stratosphere similar to the observations. The model also simulates a realistic annual cycle. Results show that during summer, much of the observed variability is explained by the height of the tropopause. During the winter and spring, when the tropopause fluctuations are larger, less of the variability is explained by tropopause height. This suggests that more mixing occurs during these seasons. During all seasons, there is a transition zone near the tropopause that contains air characteristic of both the troposphere and the stratosphere. The

  10. Transport In The Antarctic Lowermost Stratosphere Inferred From In-situ Aircraft Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werner, A.; Ivanova, E.; Riediger, O.; Schmidt, U.; Strunk, M.; Volk, M.

    During the APE-GAIA campaign in Ushuaia, Argentina (54 S) in September/October 1999 measurements of long-lived tracers were made on board the M55 Geophys- ica aircraft with the High Altitude Gas Analyser (HAGAR), an in-situ instrument designed and built at the Institute for Meteorology and Geophysics, University of Frankfurt. HAGAR consists of a two channel gas chromatograph (GC/ECD) com- bined with a non-dispersive IR analyser which together measure the species N2O, CFC11, CFC12, H1211, SF6, and CO2. Most of the data were obtained between 50S and 70S latitude outside and inside the Antarctic polar vortex up to altitudes of about 21 km. Good coverage of samples in the lowermost stratosphere is achieved during horizontal flight legs at potential temperatures < 380K as well as vertical profiles at various latitudes. To estimate transport into the lowermost stratosphere we will present simple mass- balance calculations based on a method by Ray et al. (JGR, Vol. 104, No.D21, p. 26565-26580, 1999). With the knowledge of mixing ratios of trace gases at the 380 K isentropic surface, the tropopause, and data within the lowermost stratosphere it is pos- sible to determine the portions of air coming from above 380 K and across the extrat- ropical tropopause. In order to investigate seasonal variations, comparisons are made with NASA-ER-2 data from the ASHOE/MAESA (1994) campaign. Hemispheric dif- ferences are discussed by comparing our results with the northern hemispheric results of Ray et al.

  11. Late Cretaceous - Cenozoic development of outer continental margin, southwestern Nova Scotia

    SciTech Connect

    Swift, S.A.

    1987-06-01

    The growth pattern for the outer continental margin of Nova Scotia during the Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic was studied using seismic stratigraphy and well data. Sediment accumulation was broadly controlled by temporal changes in relative sea level, but significant spatial and temporal changes in accumulation patterns were caused by changes in sediment supply rate, morphology, erosion by abyssal currents, and salt tectonics. A Jurassic-Early Cretaceous carbonate platform remained exposed until the Late Cretaceous and controlled the location and steepness of the paleoslope until the late Miocene. Local erosion of the outer shelf and slope in the late Paleocene-early Eocene produced chalky fans on the upper rise. The relationship between erosion of the shelf in the late Eocene and early Oligocene, and abyssal current erosion of the upper rise in the Oligocene, is unclear. Seaward extensions of Tertiary shelf-edge canyons are poorly defined except for the Eocene fans. In the Miocene, abyssal currents eroded a bench on the upper continental rise. Subsequently, sediments lapped onto and buried the paleoslope. The lower rise above horizon A/sup u/ (Oligocene) is composed of fans and olistostromes shed from halokinetic uplift of the upper rise. Current eroded unconformities are common in the rise sequence, but the only current deposit is a Pliocene interval (< 300 m) restricted to the lowermost rise. Pleistocene turbidity currents eroded the present canyon morphology. 15 figures, 2 tables.

  12. Predominant Intermediate-Spin Ferrous Iron in Lowermost Mantle Post-Perovskite and Perovskite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, J.; Watson, H. C.; Vanko, G.; Alp, E. E.; Prakapenka, V.; Dera, P.; Struzhkin, V. V.; Kubo, A.; Zhao, J.; McCammon, C.; Evans, W. J.

    2008-12-01

    Silicate post-perovskite and perovskite are believed to be the dominant minerals of the lowermost mantle and the lower mantle, respectively, and their properties, which can be strongly influenced by the electronic state of iron in these phases, affect our understanding of the nature of the deep Earth. To date, in these minerals the electronic spin state of iron remains unknown under lowermost-mantle pressure-temperature conditions, although recent studies have showed an electronic spin crossover from high-spin to low-spin in ferropericlase over an extended pressure-temperature range of the lower mantle (i.e., Lin et al., Science, 2007) and from high-spin to intermediate-spin in silicate perovskite near the top of the lower mantle (McCammon et al., Nature Geoscience, 2008). Here we report the spin and valence states of iron in post-perovskite and perovskite at pressure-temperature conditions relevant to the lowermost mantle using in situ X-ray emission, X-ray diffraction, and synchrotron Mossbauer spectroscopies in a laser-heated diamond cell. Perovskite and post-perovskite display extremely high quadrupole splitting (QS) of approximately 4 mm/s and relatively high center shift in the synchrotron Mossbauer spectra at 110 GPa and 134 GPa, respectively. Our results show that Fe2+ exists predominantly in the intermediate-spin state with a total spin number of one in both phases (Lin et al., Nature Geoscience, 2008). Together with recent results on the effects of the spin transition in the lower-mantle ferropericlase (see a recent review by Lin and Tsuchiya, PEPI, 2008), here we will address how the electronic spin states in lower-mantle phases and their associated effects affect our understanding on the composition, geophysics, and dynamics of the lower mantle.. References: 1. Lin, J. F., H. C. Watson, G. Vanko, E. E. Alp, V. B. Prakapenka, P. Dera, V. V. Struzhkin, A. Kubo, J. Zhao, C. McCammon, W. J. Evans, Intermediate-spin ferrous iron in lowermost mantle post

  13. Towards global observations of shear wave splitting in the Earth's lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walpole, J.; Wookey, J.; Nowacki, A. J.; Walker, A. M.; Masters, G.

    2011-12-01

    It is well documented that the Earth's lowermost mantle (a.k.a. D") is seismically anisotropic. This anisotropy is indicative of a long range order which may be caused by the alignment of crystals in a strained fabric due to lower mantle flow, or alternatively by the presence of shaped heterogeneities such as fine layers, or pockets of melt. The resolution of this anisotropy, and its proper interpretation, will place important constraints on the thermodynamic and mineralogical properties of this elusive region. Local studies of D" anisotropy have revealed that in some places the simplest style of anisotropy that fits the data is transversely isotropic with a tilted axis of symmetry. To date, global studies of lowermost mantle anisotropy have made the assumption that the anisotropy is transversely isotropic with a vertical axis of symmetry. This limits the capacity of such measurements to infer geodynamic or mineralogical causes. It remains an outstanding challenge to make global observations of anisotropy in D" without recourse to simplifying assumptions as to the style and symmetry axis of anisotropy. We use seismograms from the IRIS DMC (over the period 1998 to 2005) to perform S-ScS differential splitting and thus make observations of shear wave splitting in the lowermost mantle at a number of localities around the globe. Our method makes no assumptions as to the style of anisotropy. The determination from the S phase of splitting in the upper mantle beneath stations and events enables us to ensure that splitting in the upper mantle does not contaminate our observations of splitting in the lowermost mantle on the ScS phase. This work validates our method, and provides a firm platform from which to further our observations of shear wave splitting in D". Our dataset has excellent spatial coverage over the Northern Hemisphere with especially good azimuthal coverage over a large swath beneath Asia. The global nature of the dataset will enable us to measure splitting

  14. Strong, Multi-Scale Heterogeneity in Earth’s Lowermost Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkalčić, Hrvoje; Young, Mallory; Muir, Jack B.; Davies, D. Rhodri; Mattesini, Maurizio

    2015-12-01

    The core mantle boundary (CMB) separates Earth’s liquid iron outer core from the solid but slowly convecting mantle. The detailed structure and dynamics of the mantle within ~300 km of this interface remain enigmatic: it is a complex region, which exhibits thermal, compositional and phase-related heterogeneity, isolated pockets of partial melt and strong variations in seismic velocity and anisotropy. Nonetheless, characterising the structure of this region is crucial to a better understanding of the mantle’s thermo-chemical evolution and the nature of core-mantle interactions. In this study, we examine the heterogeneity spectrum from a recent P-wave tomographic model, which is based upon trans-dimensional and hierarchical Bayesian imaging. Our tomographic technique avoids explicit model parameterization, smoothing and damping. Spectral analyses reveal a multi-scale wavelength content and a power of heterogeneity that is three times larger than previous estimates. Inter alia, the resulting heterogeneity spectrum gives a more complete picture of the lowermost mantle and provides a bridge between the long-wavelength features obtained in global S-wave models and the short-scale dimensions of seismic scatterers. The evidence that we present for strong, multi-scale lowermost mantle heterogeneity has important implications for the nature of lower mantle dynamics and prescribes complex boundary conditions for Earth’s geodynamo.

  15. Strong, Multi-Scale Heterogeneity in Earth’s Lowermost Mantle

    PubMed Central

    Tkalčić, Hrvoje; Young, Mallory; Muir, Jack B.; Davies, D. Rhodri; Mattesini, Maurizio

    2015-01-01

    The core mantle boundary (CMB) separates Earth’s liquid iron outer core from the solid but slowly convecting mantle. The detailed structure and dynamics of the mantle within ~300 km of this interface remain enigmatic: it is a complex region, which exhibits thermal, compositional and phase-related heterogeneity, isolated pockets of partial melt and strong variations in seismic velocity and anisotropy. Nonetheless, characterising the structure of this region is crucial to a better understanding of the mantle’s thermo-chemical evolution and the nature of core-mantle interactions. In this study, we examine the heterogeneity spectrum from a recent P-wave tomographic model, which is based upon trans-dimensional and hierarchical Bayesian imaging. Our tomographic technique avoids explicit model parameterization, smoothing and damping. Spectral analyses reveal a multi-scale wavelength content and a power of heterogeneity that is three times larger than previous estimates. Inter alia, the resulting heterogeneity spectrum gives a more complete picture of the lowermost mantle and provides a bridge between the long-wavelength features obtained in global S-wave models and the short-scale dimensions of seismic scatterers. The evidence that we present for strong, multi-scale lowermost mantle heterogeneity has important implications for the nature of lower mantle dynamics and prescribes complex boundary conditions for Earth’s geodynamo. PMID:26674394

  16. Late cretaceous and paroxysmal cretaceous/tertiary extinctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Officer, Charles B.; Drake, Charles L.; Hallam, Anthony; Devine, Joseph D.

    1987-03-01

    The various geological signatures at Cretaceous/Tertiary time including iridium and other associated elements, microspherules, and shock deformation features are compatible with the suggestion that the transition is marked by a period of intense volcanism. The volatile emissions from this volcanism would lead to acid rain, reduction in the alkalinity and pH of the surface ocean, global atmospheric temperature changes, and ozone layer depletion. These environmental effects coupled with those related to the major sea level regression of the late Cretaceous provide the framework for an explanation of the selective nature of the observed extinction record.

  17. An overview of the Cretaceous stratigraphy and facies development of the Yazd Block, western Central Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilmsen, Markus; Fürsich, Franz Theodor; Majidifard, Mahmoud Reza

    2015-04-01

    The Cretaceous successions of the Yazd Block, the western of three structural blocks of the Central-East Iranian Microcontinent (CEIM), have been studied using an integrated approach of litho-, bio- and sequence stratigraphy associated with litho-, bio- and microfacies analyses. The Cretaceous System of that area is in excess of 5 km thick and a generalized relative sea-level curve can be inferred from the facies and thickness development. This curve can be subdivided into two transgressive-regressive megacycles (TRMs), separated by a major tectonic unconformity in the Upper Turonian. TRM 1 comprises the Early Cretaceous to Middle Turonian, TRM 2 the Coniacian to Maastrichtian. TRM 1 starts with up to 1500-m-thick conglomerates and sandstones covering Palaeozoic-Triassic basement rocks, metasediments, or Upper Jurassic-lowermost Cretaceous granites. The basal tectonic unconformity, related to the Late Cimmerian event (Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary interval), shows a pronounced palaeo-relief that is levelled by the basal siliciclastic formations. Sparse biostratigraphic data from calcareous intercalations in the upper part of these strata indicate a Hauterivian to Barremian age. The Aptian facies development is marked by the onlap of thick-bedded, micritic carbonates with abundant orbitolinid foraminifera and rudists representing a large-scale shallow-marine carbonate platform system that fringed the Yazd Block in the north and west. These platforms are up to 1000 m thick and drowned during the middle to Late Aptian, followed by up to 1500-m-thick basinal marly sediments of Late Aptian to mid-Late Albian ages, representing the maximum relative sea-level during TRM 1. During the latest Albian-Middle Turonian, a gradual shallowing is indicated by progradation of shallow-water skeletal limestones separated by marl tongues, representing a carbonate ramp system. Strata of TRM 2 overlie older units along a regional angular unconformity and indicate tectonic stability and

  18. CMB topography and electrical conductivity as additional constraints for the lowermost mantle thermo-chemical structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deschamps, F.; Yin, Y.; Tackley, P. J.

    2013-12-01

    A variety of seismic observations, including tomographic models, indicate that the lowermost mantle is strongly heterogeneous. Seismic observations further support a thermo-chemical origin for the large scale heterogeneities. In particular, the large low-shear wave velocity provinces (LLSVP) observed by global tomographic images are better explained by a combination of thermal and chemical anomalies. Despite the accuracy of seismic information, uncertainties and trade-off still prevent the determination of a detailed lower mantle thermo-chemical structure. For instance, the nature of chemical heterogeneities and the exact role played by the post-perovskite phase transition are still debated. Additional constraints are needed to discriminate between the possible models of structure and dynamics of the lower mantle. Here, we consider two potential additional constraints, the electrical conductivity and the dynamic topography at the core-mantle boundary (CMB). Unlike density and seismic velocities, electrical conductivity increases with temperature. In addition, it strongly varies with the iron and silicate content. Using appropriate mineral physics data, we calculated a 3D distribution of electrical conductivity in lower mantle from the thermo-chemical structure inferred by probabilistic tomography, which maps iron and silicate excess in the LLSVP. In the lowermost mantle, we observe a belt of high conductivity, with maximum values around 20 S/m located in the LLSVP. Such a belt may trigger electric currents in the lowermost mantle and induce magnetic field variations with period of one year or more. It may thus be seen by global models of electrical conductivity. Unfortunately, such models do not sample yet regions deeper than 2000 km. A second, independent constraint we explored is the dynamic topography at the CMB. We used stagYY to calculate the dynamic topography associated with several models of thermo-chemical convection, and observe strong differences

  19. Deformation and seismic anisotropy of silicate post-perovskite in the Earth's lowermost mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    wu, X.; Lin, J.; Mao, Z.; Liu, J.; Kaercher, P. M.; Wenk, H.; Prakapenka, V.; Zhuravlev, K. K.

    2013-12-01

    The D' layer in the Earth's lowermost mantle with an average thickness of 250 km right above the core-mantle boundary plays a significant role in the geophysics, geochemistry, and geodynamics of the planet's interior. Seismic observations of the region have shown a number of enigmatic features including shear wave discontinuity and seismic wave anisotropy. The seismic anisotropy, in which the horizontally-polarized shear wave (VSH) travels faster than the vertically-polarized shear wave (VSV) by 1%~3% in areas below the circum Pacific, has been proposed to be a result of the lattice-preferred orientation of silicate post-perovskite (PPv) that is to be the most abundant phase in the D' layer [1]. Therefore, understanding the elasticity and deformation of the PPv phase is critical under relevant P-T conditions of the region. However, experimental results on the textures and the elastic anisotropy of PPv remain largely limited and controversial. Specifically, a number of slip systems of PPv, such as (010), (100), (110) and (001), have been proposed based on experimental and theoretical results [2-4]. Here we have studied the textures and deformation mechanism of iron-bearing PPv ((Mg0.75,Fe0.25)SiO3) at relevant P-T conditions of the lowermost mantle using synchrotron radiation radial x-ray diffraction in a membrane-driven laser-heated diamond anvil cell. The diffraction patterns were recorded from the laser-heated PPv sample during further compression between 130 GPa and 150 GPa. Analyses of the diffraction patterns and simulation results from viscoplastic self-consistent polycrystal plasticity code (VPSC) show that the development of active slip systems can be strongly influenced by experimental pressure-temperature-time conditions. At relevant P-T conditions of the lowermost mantle, our results demonstrate that the dominant slip systems of PPv should be (001)[100] and (001)[010]. Combined these results with the elasticity of PPv, we provide more constrains on the

  20. Seismic stratigraphy of the western Florida carbonate platform above the Mid-Cretaceous sequence boundary (MCSB)

    SciTech Connect

    Jee, J.L. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-03-01

    From the Apalachicola Basin (AB) to the Sarasota Arch, a web of multifold seismic and 29 wells were analyzed to determine Upper Cretaceous-Cenozoic stratigraphy. Concordant reflection geometries above and below the MCSB throughout most of the study area do not suggest prolonged subaerial exposure of the platform as some have considered. The configuration of the MCSB surface influenced the distribution of overlying sediment such that the section is thick in the basins and thin on the highs. The three main units recognized are Upper Cretaceous, Paleocene-Eocene, and post-Eocene. The Upper Cretaceous has two subunits, KU1 and KU2. KU1 corresponds in age to the Tuscaloosa-Eutaw lithostratigraphic units, has continuous, parallel seismic facies, and tends to thicken in depressions on the MCSB. KU2 is age-equivalent to part of the Selma Gp. Maastrichtian strata are locally thin to partly absent. In the AB, KU2 appears intensely faulted. Sonic velocities in KU2 show southeastward change to more carbonate rock across the Middle Ground Arch, where hummocky-to-contorted seismic facies and thickening on the structural high suggest constructional accumulation. In wells, Paleocene strata lie unconformably on the Upper Cretaceous. The Paleocene section is thin and not easy to resolve on seismic sections. In the AB, the lowermost Eocene sequence is a wedge that thickens dramatically to the west. In the eastern AB, younger Eocene sequences are stacked to form broad en echelon mounds. Post-Eocene strata in the AB are continuous, parallel and drape the upper Eocene surface. Along the southeastern, up-dip margin of the Tampa Embayment (TE), a belt of west-prograding clinoforms marks the Eocene shelf edge. Landward of this, a seismic marbled zone suggests dolomitic facies. In the post-Eocene section of the TE, Oligocene-Lower Miocene strata form successive sequences of progradational clinoforms that steepen as they impinge on the FL Escarpment.

  1. Origin of granulite terranes and the formation of the lowermost continental crust.

    PubMed

    Bohlen, S R; Mezger, K

    1989-04-21

    Differences in composition and pressures of equilibration between exposed, regional granulite terranes and suites of granulite xenoliths of crustal origin indicate that granulite terranes do not represent exhumed lowermost crust, as had been thought, but rather middle and lower-middle crustal levels. Application of well-calibrated barometers indicate that exposed granulites record equilibration pressures of 0.6 to 0.8 gigapascal (20 to 30 kilometers depth of burial), whereas granulite xenoliths, which also tend to be more mafic, record pressures of at least 1.0 to 1.5 gigapascals (35 to 50 kilometers depth of burial). Thickening of the crust by the crystallization of mafic magmas at the crust-mantle boundary may account for both the formation of regional granulite terranes at shallower depths and the formation of deep-seated mafic crust represented by many xenolith suites. PMID:17738304

  2. Beyond Waveform Forward Modeling: The Lowermost Mantle Beneath the East of Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pachhai, S.; Tkalcic, H.

    2012-12-01

    Seismic imaging of the lowermost mantle provides key information about its structure and dynamics, shaping constraints on mantle convection and heat transfer between the core and mantle. Ultra low velocity zones (ULVZs) sitting on top of the core-mantle boundary (CMB) are identified as small-scale structures with a sharp decrease in P- and S-wave velocity and an increase in density. Apart from small-scale features, it is also crucial to accurately image the large-scale features in the mantle because the dynamics of a boundary layer is closely coupled to the upwelling and downwelling motions of a convective system. Due to a high computational cost that more sophisticated inversion technique would impose, waveform forward modeling of the core-reflected and core-refracted waves is a widely used method for the investigation of ULVZs and other features of the lowermost mantle. In forward modeling, the density, velocity and thickness of layers are varied in a trial and error or simple grid-search fashion until they produce synthetic seismograms that match the main features observed in the seismic waveforms. It is often possible to convincingly model the observed waveforms by an ULVZ with different properties and geometry making forward solutions highly non-unique. It is also possible to generate a structural model that fits the waveform data, but is not necessarily required by the data. In order to address this problem we utilize transdimensional inversion, which is a Bayesian method that utilizes an ensemble of models representing the posterior probability distribution. The method treats the number of free parameters (e.g. the number of layers at the base of the mantle, their thicknesses, densities and velocities) as unknowns in the problem. Furthermore, the noise in the data is used to constrain the complexity of the model. This method thus carries the potential to advance our understanding about lowermost mantle structure and dynamics. Southwest Pacific subduction

  3. On the structure of the lowermost mantle beneath the southwest Pacific, southeast Asia and Australasia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kendall, J.-M.; Shearer, P. M.

    1995-11-01

    The region of the lowermost mantle beneath the southwest Pacific, Australasia and southeast Asia (50°S-50°N and 80-190°E) has been studied using a wide variety of seismic techniques. We complement these studies with results obtained from long-period Global Digital Seismograph Network (GDSN) data using a recently developed phase-stripping technique that permits the isolation of D″ reflections from the stronger neighbouring S and ScS signals. We identify patches with D″ reflections and areas where we cannot confidently determine the presence or absence of a D″ reflection. A synthesis of our results with other studies suggests that D″ varies dramatically through the region, generally thickening from 100-150 km in a central zone to about 300 km at the eastern and western margins. However, there are irregularities in this overall pattern, including areas where there seems to be little evidence for a D″ discontinuity. Inspection of waveform amplitudes shows considerable scatter in not only the D″ reflected phases, but also core-mantle boundary reflected phases. Experiments with synthetic seismograms for a variety of D″ models and the observed lateral variability through the region suggest that this is to be expected. Furthermore, ray-theory calculations for large-scale 3D Earth models predict significant variations (±30%) in S-wave amplitudes of lowermost mantle turning rays. Finally, we investigate possible correlations between lower-mantle velocity, flow and D″ thickness. We find some correlation between D″ thickness and lower-mantle velocities obtained from tomographic inversions, with a thin D″ layer in high-velocity regions and a thickening of the layer toward slower regions. The relationship between predicted lower-mantle flow and D″ thickness is less clear. These results are qualitatively consistent with thermal boundary layer predictions for D″, but do not preclude the possibility of compositionally distinct material in the layer.

  4. Cretaceous paleogeography of Peninsular California

    SciTech Connect

    Gastil, R.G.

    1986-04-01

    For the past 15 years, paleomagnetic studies on various rock types have consistently shown southern and Baja California to have been located at 10/sup 0/-17/sup 0/ lower latitude, relative to cratonal North America, than it is today. Similar studies on the Salinian block and in southwestern Oregon also indicate substantially lower latitudes for the deposition of Upper Cretaceous rocks. In seeming contradiction, apparent correlations across the Gulf of California plate boundary relate Cambrian(.) to Triassic stratal rocks of Sonora and the Great Basin to their contemporaries in Baja California, and Jurassic and Cretaceous arc rocks in the peninsula to those in mainland Mexico. Therefore, relative movement along the San Andreas system seems limited to approximately 300 km in a right-lateral direction since the Miocene. A possible accommodation to both sets of evidence places the Baja Peninsula near its present position relative to cratonal North America until about the Middle Jurassic, when it began moving relatively southeastward. This left-lateral motion placed it about 11/sup 0/ southeast by the Aptian-Albian and 17/sup 0/ southeast by the Campanian-Maestrichtian. The Late Jurassic to Late Cretaceous arcs trended southeast through Sonora, Sinaloa, and Jalisco, and then down the length of peninsular California. The right-lateral return of the peninsula began during the Late Cretaceous. The fault systems for the return motion cannot lie west of the Gulf of California, and thus, neither can the earlier left-lateral fault.

  5. Observations of cirrus clouds in the lowermost stratosphere: common feature, rare incident, or observational artefact?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spang, Reinhold; Günther, Gebhard; Müller, Rolf; Hoffmann, Lars; Griessbach, Sabine; Rolf, Christian; Riese, Martin

    2014-05-01

    Ground based observations by lidar instruments show evidential occurrence of optically and vertically thin cirrus clouds in the lowermost stratosphere (LMS). The knowledge about the potential formation processes of these clouds, their occurrence and distribution, and their radiative impact is very limited. Global observations of LMS cirrus clouds by satellites would be very helpful to better characterise these clouds. However, this is a difficult task because the optical thickness of LMS cirrus is usually at the edge of the detection limit (for space borne limb-sounders) or even below (for infra red nadir sounders).In addition, instrument characteristics can make it difficult to judge if a cloud observation is inside the LMS of just at or below the tropopause. Consequently it is not really proven if LMS cirrus clouds are a rare occasion or a globally common feature. We will give a brief overview of the history of LMS cirrus observations from ground and space borne sensors and are highlighting the sometimes controversial discussion on the observation of clouds in the LMS. Then we will focus on results from measurements of the Cryogenic Infrared Spectrometers and Telescopes for the Atmosphere (CRISTA) satellite instrument. CRISTA made a number of snapshot measurements of the UT/LS during its two Space Shuttle missions in 1994 and 1997. The measurements demonstrate the potential of the IR limb viewing technique to provide information on several trace constituents and optically thin cirrus clouds with comparably high spatial resolution. The CRISTA data are still unique for IR limb sounders in the sense of vertical (1.5 km) and horizontal (300-500 km) resolution as well as daily global coverage by using three telescopes for three different viewing directions simultaneously. The detection sensitivity for optically thin cirrus clouds is extremely high. Depending on the vertical and horizontal extent of a cirrus cloud, the detection of an ice water content > 10-5g/m3 is

  6. Late Cretaceous volcanism in south-central New Mexico: Conglomerates of the McRae and Love Ranch Formations

    SciTech Connect

    Chapman-Fahey, J.L.; McMillan, N.J.; Mack, G.H.; Seager, W.R. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1993-04-01

    Evidence to support Late Cretaceous volcanism in south central New Mexico is restricted to a small area of 75-Ma-old andesitic rocks at Copper Flats near Hillsboro, and volcanic clasts in the McRae (Late Cretaceous/Paleocene ) and Love Ranch (Paleocene/Eocene). Formations located in the Jornada del Muerto basin east and northeast of the Caballo Mountains. Major and trace element data and petrographic analysis of 5 samples from Copper Flats lavas and 40 samples of volcanic clasts from the McRae and Love Ranch conglomerates will be used to reconstruct the Cretaceous volcanic field. The McRae Formation consists of two members: the lower Jose Creek and the upper Hall Lake. The lowermost Love Ranch Formation is unconformable in all places on the Hall Lake Member. Stratigraphic variations in clast composition from volcanic rocks in the lower Love Ranch Formation to Paleozoic and Precambrian clasts in the upper Love Ranch Formation reflect the progressive unroofing of the Laramide Rio Grande Uplift. Volcanic clasts in the McRae and Love Ranch Formations were derived from the west and south of the depositional basin, but the source area for McRae clasts is less well constrained. Stratigraphic, chemical, and petrographic data will be used to reconstruct the volcanic complex and more clearly define magma genesis and metasomatism associated with Laramide deformation.

  7. Effects of Isotropic and Anisotropic Structure in the Lowermost Mantle on High-Frequency Body Waveforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parisi, L.; Ferreira, A. M. G.; Ritsema, J.

    2015-12-01

    It has been observed that vertically (SV) and horizontally (SH) polarised S waves crossing the lowermost mantle sometimes are split by a few seconds The splitting of such waves is often interpreted in terms of seismic anisotropy in the D" region. Here we investigate systematically the effects of elastic, anelastic, isotropic and anisotropic structure on shear-wave splitting, including 3-D variations in some of these physical properties. Taking advantage of accurate waveform modeling techniques such as Gemini and the Spectral Element Method we generate three-component theoretical waveforms in a wide set of 1-D and 3-D, isotropic and radially anisotropic earth models, accurate down to a wave period of T~5.6s. Our numerical simulations in isotropic earth models show that the contamination of S waves by other phases can generate an apparent splitting between SH and SV waves. In particular, in the case of very shallow sources, the sS phase can interfere with the direct S phase, resulting in split SH and SV pulses when the SH and SV (or sSH and sSV) waves have different polarity or a substantial amplitude difference. In the case of deep earthquake sources, a positive shear velocity jump at the top of the D" can cause the triplication of S waves and the ScSH and ScSV phases can have different polarity. Thus, when the triplicated S wave is combined with the ScS phase, the resulting SH-ScSH and SV-ScSV phases may seem split. On the other hand, in the absence of a sharp vertical variation in the shear wave velocity, the difference in polarity between ScSH and ScSV can make the SH pulse larger than SV and thus also lead to apparent splitting between these phases. This effect depends on the thickness of the D" and the Vs gradient within it. S waveforms simulated in radially anisotropic models reveal that a radial anisotropy of ξ=1.07 in the D" seems to be necessary to explain the 2-3s of splitting observed in waveforms recorded in Tanzania from an event in the Banda Sea

  8. Vegetation and plant food reconstruction of lowermost Bed II, Olduvai Gorge, using modern analogs.

    PubMed

    Copeland, Sandi R

    2007-08-01

    Vegetation and plant foods for hominins of lowermost Bed II, Olduvai Gorge were modeled by examining vegetation in modern habitats in northern Tanzania (Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro, Serengeti) that are analogous to the paleolandscape in terms of climate, land forms, and soil types, as indicated by previous paleoenvironmental studies of Olduvai. Plant species in the modern habitats were identified in a series of sample plots, and those known to be eaten by modern humans, chimpanzees, or baboons were considered potentially edible for early hominins. Within the 50-80 kyr deposition of lowermost Bed II, periods of drier climate were characterized by low lake stands and a broad eastern lacustrine plain containing a mosaic of springs, marsh, woodland, and edaphic grassland. Based on results of this study, plant food diversity in each of those habitats was relatively low, but the mosaic nature of the area meant that hominins could reach several different habitat types within short distances, with access to potential plant foods including marsh plants, grass grains, roots, shrub fruits, edible parts from palms, leafy herbaceous plants, and Acacia pods, flowers, and gum. Based on Manyara analogs, a greater variety of plant foods, such as tree fruits (e.g., Ficus, Trichilia) and the roots and fruits of shrubs (e.g., Cordia, Salvadora) would be expected further east along the rivers in the lacustrine terrace and alluvial fans. Interfluves of the alluvial fans were probably less wooded and offered relatively fewer varieties of plant foods, but there is sparse paleoenvironmental evidence for the character of Olduvai's alluvial fans, making the choice of appropriate modern analogs difficult. In the western side of the basin, based on modern analogs in the Serengeti, riverine habitats provided the greatest variety of edible plant food species (e.g., Acacia, Grewia, Justicia). If the interfluves were grassland, then a large variety of potentially edible grasses and forbs were present

  9. Impact of Aircraft Emissions on NO(x) in the Lowermost Stratosphere at Northern Midlatitudes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kondo, Y.; Koike, M.; Ikeda, H.; Anderson, B. E.; Brunke, K. E.; Zhao, Y.; Kita, K.; Sugita, T.; Singh, H. B.; Liu, S. C.

    1999-01-01

    Airborne measurements of NO(x) total reactive nitrogen (NO(y)), O3 and condensation nuclei (CN) were made within air traffic corridors over the U.S. and North Atlantic regions (35-60 deg N) in the fall of 1997. NO(x) and NO(y) data obtained in the lowermost stratosphere (LS) were examined using the calculated increase in NO(y) ((delta)NO(y)) along five-day back trajectories as a parameter to identify possible effects of aircraft on reactive nitrogen. It is very likely that aircraft emissions had a significant impact on the NO(x) levels in the LS inasmuch as the NO(s), mixing ratios at 8.5-12 km were significantly correlated with the independent parameters of aircraft emissions, i.e., (delta)NO(y) levels and CN values. In order to estimate quantitatively the impact of aircraft emissions on NO(x), and CN, the background levels of CN and NO(x) at O3 = 100-200 ppbv were derived from the correlations of these quantities with (delta)NO(y)). On average, the aircraft emissions are estimated to have increased the NO(x) and CN values by 130 pptv and 400 STP,cc, respectively, which corresponds to 70 -/+ 30 % and 30 -/+ 20 % of the observed median values.

  10. Long-term Temperature Measurements of the Upper Troposphere and Lowermost Stratosphere with MOZAIC and IAGOS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berkes, Florian; Neis, Patrick; Rohs, Susanne; Smit, Herman; Schultz, Martin; Konopka, Paul; Nédélec, Phillipe; Boulanger, Damien; Petzold, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    An important component of numerical weather prediction models is the assimilation of in-situ temperature measurements on a global scale. The sources of temperature data are retrievals from various satellite instruments, and in-situ radiosonde and commercial aircrafts measurements. The European Research Infrastructure IAGOS (In-service Aircraft for a Global Observing System) operates a global-scale monitoring system for meteorological and atmospheric trace gases at high spatial resolution by instrumented passenger aircrafts. We will present in-situ airborne temperature measurements at cruise level by IAGOS/MOZAIC since 1994. The temperature measurements are obtained through a Pt100 built into a VAISALA capacity hygrometer, and they are independed, which means the measurements are not assimilated in numerical weather prediction models. The accuracy is better than the in-general installed temperature sensors on commercial aircrafts. We will show an intercomparison between the ERA-Interim temperature data against the Pt100 measurements for different atmospheric layers (upper troposphere, tropopause, lowermost stratosphere) and focus on the northern and mid-latitude regions.

  11. Anticorrelated seismic velocity anomalies from post-perovskite in the lowermost mantle

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hutko, Alexander R.; Lay, T.; Revenaugh, Justin; Garnero, E.J.

    2008-01-01

    Earth's lowermost mantle has thermal, chemical, and mineralogical complexities that require precise seismological characterization. Stacking, migration, and modeling of over 10,000 P and S waves that traverse the deep mantle under the Cocos plate resolve structures above the core-mantle boundary. A small -0.07 ?? 0.15% decrease of P wave velocity (Vp) is accompanied by a 1.5 ?? 0.5% increase in S wave velocity (Vs) near a depth of 2570 km. Bulk-sound velocity [Vb = (V p2 - 4/3Vs2)1/2] decreases by -1.0 ?? 0.5% at this depth. Transition of the primary lower-mantle mineral, (Mg1-x-y FexAly)(Si,Al) O3 perovskite, to denser post-perovskite is expected to have a negligible effect on the bulk modulus while increasing the shear modulus by ???6%, resulting in local anticorrelation of Vb and Vs anomalies; this behavior explains the data well.

  12. Observational evidence for the turbulent decay of a narrow tropospheric filament in the lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunner, D.; Hegglin, M.; Wernli, H.; Hoor, P.; Schiller, C.; Fischer, H.; Weers, U.; Peter, T.

    2003-04-01

    In the framework of the SPURT project in-situ measurements of of a set of mostly long-lived tracers were performed from a Learjet aircraft on flights between about 28oN and 78oN over Europe. We present observations of narrow tropospheric filaments at the edge of a spectacularly deep tropopause fold that occurred over southwestern Europe and northern Africa on 10 November 2001. The position and size of the filaments, as derived from the tracer observations, could be reproduced successfully using reverse-domain-filling trajectories based on ECMWF analysis fields. Turbulence was reported by the aircraft crew exactly during the crossing of one of these filaments. The wind speed measured from the airplane showed a pronounced local maximum at the edge of the filament and a correspondingly strong horizontal shear. We thus speculate that the turbulence was induced by the filament itself and that this process contributes to the ultimate mixing of tropospheric air into the lowermost stratosphere.

  13. Magnetostratigraphic and geochronological age constraints on the lowermost Beaufort Group, Karoo Basin, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tohver, E.; Lanci, L.; Wilson, A.; Flint, S.

    2011-12-01

    The Karoo Basin of South Africa is a classic foreland basin sequence, with sedimentation putatively linked to Gondwanide orogenesis in the Cape Fold Belt. Biostratigraphic data for the fluvial to lacustrine sediments of the Beaufort Group have traditionally assigned a late Permian age to these foreland basin sediments on the basis of Glossopteris flora and Dicynodont fauna findings. This age conflicts with recently published U-Pb zircon age data from below the Beaufort Group that suggested a latest Permian, early Triassic age for those rocks. In order to resolve this discrepancy, we undertook a coupled magnetostratigraphic and geochronological study of the lowermost Beaufort Group of South Africa. Volcanic zircons from various tuffaceous horizons were analyzed for U-Pb age by SHRIMP. The youngest population of late Permian zircons are interpreted as the age of volcanic ashfall and sedimentation, with inheritance from pre-existing crust recognized from the presence of ca. 500 Ma and 1000-1100 Ma zircons. The possibility of Pb loss from these youngest grains will be assessed by CA-TIMS work. Magnetostratigraphic sampling was carried out in two separate sedimentary profiles, 169 m and 549 m thick, that are separated by roughly 85 km across depositional strike. Diagnostic patterns of normal and reversed magnetozones allow for the close correlation of these two sections. This pattern, anchored by the U-Pb zircon ages, can be correlated to the Global Polarity Timescale of Ogg et al. (2008), and supports a late Guadalupian age for these sediments.

  14. A simulation of groundwater discharge and nitrate delivery to chesapeake bay from the lowermost delmarva peninsula, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sanford, W.E.; Pope, J.P.

    2007-01-01

    A groundwater model has been developed for the lowermost Delmarva Peninsula, USA, that simulates saltwater intrusion into local confined aquifers and nitrate delivery to the Chesapeake Bay from the surficial aquifer. A flow path and groundwater-age analysis was performed using the model to estimate the timing of nitrate delivery to the bay over the next several decades. The simulated mean and median residence times of groundwater in the lowermost peninsula are 30 and 15 years, respectively. Current and future nitrate concentrations in coastal groundwater discharge were simulated based on local well data that include nitrate concentrations and groundwater age. A simulated future-trends analysis indicates that nitrate that has been applied to agricultural regions over the last few decades will continue to discharge into the bay for several decades to come. This study highlights the importance of considering the groundwater lag time that affects the mean transport time from diffuse contamination sources.

  15. The Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary biotic crisis in the Basque country

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamolda, M. A.

    1988-01-01

    The Zumaya section has been selected as a classic locality for the study of the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary due to its richness in microfaune, macrofaune, and nannoflora. The sections present similar good conditions for the study of the K-T boundary. The sedimentary rocks of the Uppermost Maastrichtian from the Basque Country are purple or pink marls and marls-tones. Above it is found a clayed bed, 40 to 29 cm thick, grey or dark grey in its basal part, of Lowermost Danian age. Above there is alternation of micritic grey-pink limestones and thin clay beds of Dano-Montian age. The average sedimentation is 7 to 8 times higher during the Upper Maastrichtian than in the Dano-Montian. The macrofauna underwent a decrease since the Campanian and was not found in the last 11 m of the Zumaya section; it was associated with changes in paleoceanographic conditions and primary productivity of the oceans. The microfossil assemblages in the K-T transition allows the recognition of several phases of a complex crisis between two well established planktonic ecosystems. In the Mayaroensis Zone there is a stable ecosystem with 45 to 47 planktonic foraminifera species. The disappearance of A. mayaroensis starts a degradation of the ecosystem. The number of planktonic foraminiera species decreases between 20 and 45 percent. The next phase of the crisis was the result of main extinction events in the planktonic calcareous ecosystem. There are several cretaceous planktonic foraminifera species, probably reworked, whose numbers decrease upward. The next and last phase of the biotic crisis shows a diversification of the ecosystem; the number of planktonic foraminifera is 2 to 3 times higher than before and it is noted the first appearance of Tertiary nannoflora species, while Cretaceous species decrease and persisting species are still the main ones.

  16. Nonmarine upper cretaceous rocks, Cook Inlet, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Magoon, L.B.; Griesbach, F.B.; Egbert, R.M.

    1980-08-01

    A section of Upper Cretaceous (Maestrichtian) nonmarine sandstone, conglomerate, and siltstone with associated coal is exposed near Saddle mountain on the northwest flank of Cook Inlet basin, the only known surface exposure of nonmarine Upper Cretaceous rocks in the Cook Inlet area. The section, at least 83.3 m thick, unconformably overlies the Upper Jurassic Naknek Formation and is unconformably overlain by the lower Tertiary West Foreland Formation. These upper Cretaceous rocks correlate lithologically with the second or deeper interval of nonmarine Upper Cretaceous rocks penetrated in the lower Cook Inlet COST 1 well.

  17. Anisotropy in the lowermost mantle: to the limits of ray theory (and beyond)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowacki, A.; Walker, A.; Wookey, J. M.; Kendall, J. M.

    2013-12-01

    It seems that the Earth's mantle flows on the order of centimetres per year, but it has thus far been impossible to directly constrain details of flow direction or magnitude through our primary means of probing the deep interior--seismic waves. Yet the presence of anisotropy in the upper and lowermost mantle presents an intriguing possibility: if this is due to lattice preferred orientation (LPO) of anisotropic minerals in response to flow, one may be able to ';invert' for the recent strain history in these regions. New mineral physics experiments and numerical modelling will help define slip systems for mantle minerals and under which conditions LPO develops, eventually removing two key current unknowns. Homogenisation techniques (e.g., viscoplastic self-consistent method) to model LPO development from strain history exist and are in active development. Models of mantle convection are increasingly complex and will in future include viscosity which depends on strain history and LPO. The key step in retrieving flow from seismic observables, therefore, is to obtain enough information about the type of anisotropy present in order to relate it to the alignment of mineral grains. Here we focus on the seismological ';worst case' of the lowermost mantle--D″--where surface waves are not available, giving the most pessimistic view of progress. The infinite frequency (ray theory) assumption is often made when forward modelling wave propagation because it allows for rapid computation. Any inversion for flow must be computationally tractable, so we must assess the applicability of this assumption. To do so, we compute the wave field making no assumptions about the symmetry of elasticity in the Earth; i.e., we permit all 21 elastic constants to vary. Calculations are performed at the same frequency as observations (0.01-0.2 Hz). We use the spectral element method, which scales well for very large calculations. In particular we use a modified version of SPECFEM3D_GLOBE which

  18. Numerical model of the lowermost Mississippi River as an alluvial-bedrock reach: preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viparelli, E.; Nittrouer, J. A.; Mohrig, D. C.; Parker, G.

    2012-12-01

    Recent field studies reveal that the river bed of the Lower Mississippi River is characterized by a transition from alluvium (upstream) to bedrock (downstream). In particular, in the downstream 250 km of the river, fields of actively migrating bedforms alternate with deep zones where a consolidated substratum is exposed. Here we present a first version of a one-dimensional numerical model able to capture the alluvial-bedrock transition in the lowermost Mississippi River, defined herein as the 500-km reach between the Old River Control Structure and the Gulf of Mexico. The flow is assumed to be steady, and the cross-section is divided in two regions, the river channel and the floodplain. The streamwise variation of channel and floodplain geometry is described with synthetic relations derived from field observations. Flow resistance in the river channel is computed with the formulation for low-slope, large sand bed rivers due to Wright and Parker, while a Chezy-type formulation is implemented on the floodplain. Sediment is modeled in terms of bed material and wash load. Suspended load is computed with the Wright-Parker formulation. This treatment allows either uniform sediment or a mixture of different grain sizes, and accounts for stratification effects. Bedload transport rates are estimated with the relation for sediment mixtures of Ashida and Michiue. Previous work documents reasonable agreement between these load relations and field measurements. Washload is routed through the system solving the equation of mass conservation of sediment in suspension in the water column. The gradual transition from the alluvial reach to the bedrock reach is modeled in terms of a "mushy" layer of specified thickness overlying the non-erodible substrate. In the case of a fully alluvial reach, the channel bed elevation is above this mushy layer, while in the case of partial alluvial cover of the substratum, the channel bed elevation is within the mushy layer. Variations in base

  19. The feasibility of inverting for flow in the lowermost mantle (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowacki, A.; Walpole, J.; Wookey, J. M.; Walker, A.; Forte, A. M.; Masters, G.; Kendall, J. M.

    2013-12-01

    At the core-mantle boundary (CMB), the largest change in physical properties occurs within the Earth. Furthermore, up to a few hundred kilometres above the CMB--the region known as D″--the largest lateral variations in seismic wave speed are observed outside the upper mantle. Observations of shear wave splitting in D″ shows that these variations are dependent not only on position, but also wave propagation direction and polarisation; that is, strong seismic anisotropy is a pervasive feature of D″, just as in the upper mantle (UM). Similarly to the UM, it is frequently argued that alignment of anisotropic minerals due to flow is the cause of this. Were this the case, this anisotropy could be used to retrieve the recent strain history of the lowermost mantle. Recent modelling of mineral alignment in D″ [1,2] has shown that quite simple models of mantle flow do not produce simple anisotropy, hence one must make use of the most information about the type and orientation of anisotropy possible. Global inversion for radial anisotropy permits complete coverage of the CMB but so far has relied on core-diffracted waves (Sdiff) which are challenging to accurately interpret [3]. The assumption of radial anisotropy may also be too restrictive [4]. Shear wave splitting studies do not impose any assumed type of anisotropy but have been traditionally limited in their geographical scope. We present the results of a consistent analysis of core-reflected shear waves (ScS) for shear wave splitting, producing near-global coverage [5] of D″. Over 12,000 individual measurements are made, from ~470 events. Along well-studied paths such as beneath the Caribbean, our results agree excellently with previous work. Elsewhere, a full range of fast orientations are observed, indicating that simple SV-SH comparisons may not accurately reflect the elasticity present. We compare these results to candidate models of D″ anisotropy assuming a simple flow model derived from geophysical

  20. A case study of deep convective transport of tropospheric air into the lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Wernli, H.; Hoor, P.; Fischer, H.; Schiller, C.; Weers, U.; Peter, Th.

    2003-04-01

    In the framework of SPURT seasonal conducted high-resolution airborne measurements of NO, NOy and O3 besides other long-lived tracers are performed in order to investigate the role of dynamical and chemical processes shaping the structure of the tropopause region. NO, NOy, and O3 are measured by chemiluminescence reaction of NO and O3, NOy after beeing reduced by an externally mounted catalytic converter into NO.[0.3cm] First evaluations of the measurements show that in winter and spring tracer-correlations in the lowermost stratosphere between NOy/O3 and NOy/N2O are controlled by downward transport of aged stratospheric air, whereas summer and autumn measurements show characteristics of tropospheric air composition. In a case study of a flight from Hohn 52oN to Faro 37oN we analyzed the results of a flight through a spectacularly deep stratospheric intrusion associated with a large convective system over the Mediterranean using the reverse-domain-filling technique (RDF) based on three-dimensional ECMWF analyses. Unexpectedly high NOy and H2O concentrations were observed above the tropopause but could not be explained by troposphere to stratosphere transport in the past 20 days based on trajectory calculations. However, nearby convective clouds with cloud top temperatures as low as -50oC suggest a high potential for convective injection of tropospheric air into the stratosphere. Simulations with cloud resolving models confirm the possibility of TST up to about 40 K above the tropopause.

  1. La coupe d'Ouled Haddou (Rif externe oriental) : un affleurement continu de la transition Crétacé Paléogène au Maroc, révélé par les Foraminifères planctoniquesThe Ouled Haddou section (oriental external Rif): a continuous outcrop of the Cretaceous Palaeogene transition in Morocco, revealed by planktonic Foraminifera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toufiq, Abdelkabir; Bellier, Jean-Pierre; Boutakiout, Mohamed; Feinberg, Hugues

    2002-10-01

    In the Ouled Haddou section, deposits of the Uppermost Maastrichtian correspond to the Abathomphalus mayaroensis Biozone. The index species is regularly present until the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary, which is marked by a mass extinction affecting 41 species (large and complex). Some Cretaceous small species persist in the Lowermost Danian. The first levels of the Danian are assigned to the Guembelitria cretacea Biozone, in which the species index persist without being affected, and the first species of the Tertiary appear. The upper part of the Lower Danian corresponds to the succession of Parvularugoglobigerina eugubina, Parasubbotina pseudobulloides, and Subbotina triloculinoides Biozones. From the P. eugubina Biozone, associations of Danian vary to undergo a complete renewal in the upper zones. The Ouled Haddou section, described for the first time, presents, according to planktonic Foraminifera, a complete record of the Cretaceous-Palaeogene transition. To cite this article: A. Toufiq et al., C. R. Geoscience 334 (2002) 995-1001.

  2. Fine Seismic Velocity Structure of the Lowermost Outer Core (F-layer) Beneath the Eastern Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohtaki, T.; Kaneshima, S.

    2014-12-01

    Solidification or melting at the inner core boundary, the phenomena that have been suggested to occur reflecting the dynamical processes either of the inner core or of the outer core, might cause a Fe-rich or Fe-poor layer in the lowermost outer core (F-layer). Such a compositional anomaly might be detectable by investigating fine seismic structure of the F-layer. In our previous study we determined the overall Vp structure near the inner core boundary beneath Antarctica using differential traveltimes between PKIKP and PKPbc, waveform modeling of PKIKP and PKiKP, and amplitude ratios between PKIKP and PKPbc. But the fine structure of the F-layer remained poorly constrained.In this presentation, we examined the Vp structure of the F-layer beneath the eastern Pacific using differential traveltimes between PKiKP and PKPbc as well as frequency dependence of differential traveltimes between PKIKP and PKPbc, because these two analyses are particularly sensitive to the F-layer structure. We analyzed broadband seismograms of South American earthquakes observed at HI-NET in Japan. The differential traveltime residuals (observed minus calculated) between PKiKP and PKPbc are sensitive to the Vp excess relative to the reference model that is summed over the F-layer below the turning depth of PKPbc. For between 147 and 150 degrees the observed differential residuals show larger negative values and no noticeable dependence on distance compared to that for AK135. PREM that has larger Vp values in the F-layer than AK135 gives smaller differentials than the observations. On the other hand frequency dependence of differential traveltimes between PKIKP and PKPbc has unique sensitivity to the Vp slope in the F-layer, and low sensitivity to the Vp value on the ICB. We measured differential traveltimes for two different frequency bands for between 150 and 157 degrees, and then calculated the difference of the differentials between the two frequency bands. The observed differences show

  3. Constraining lowermost mantle structure with PcP/P amplitude ratios from large aperture arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ventosa, S.; Romanowicz, B. A.

    2015-12-01

    Observations of weak short-period teleseismic body waves help to resolve lowermost mantle structure at short wavelengths, which is essential for understanding mantle dynamics and the interactions between the mantle and core. Their limited amount and uneven distribution are however major obstacles to solve for volumetric structure of the D" region, topography of the core-mantle boundary (CMB) and D" discontinuity, and the trade-offs among them. While PcP-P differential travel times provide important information, there are trade-offs between velocity structure and core-mantle boundary topography, which PcP/P amplitude ratios can help resolve, as long as lateral variations in attenuation and biases due to focusing are small or can be corrected for. Dense broadband seismic networks help to improve signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the target phases and signal-to-interference ratio (SIR) of other mantle phases when the slowness difference is large enough. To improve SIR and SNR of teleseismic PcP data, we have introduced the slant-stacklet transform to define coherent-guided filters able to separate and enhance signals according to their slowness, time of arrival and frequency content. We thus obtain optimal PcP/P amplitude ratios in the least-square sense using two short sliding windows to match the P signal with a candidate PcP signal. This method allows us to dramatically increase the amount of high-quality observations of short-period PcP/P amplitude ratios by allowing for smaller events and wider epicentral distance and depth ranges.We present the results of measurement of PcP/P amplitude ratios, sampling regions around the Pacific using dense arrays in North America and Japan. We observe that short-period P waves traveling through slabs are strongly affected by focusing, in agreement with the bias we have observed and corrected for due to mantle heterogeneities on PcP-P travel time differences. In Central America, this bias is by far the stronger anomaly we observe

  4. Anisotropy in the lowermost mantle beneath the circum-Pacific: observations and modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walpole, J.; Wookey, J. M.; Nowacki, A.; Walker, A.; Kendall, J. M.; Masters, G.; Forte, A. M.

    2014-12-01

    The lowermost 300 km of mantle (D'') acts as the lower boundary layer to mantle convection. Numerous observations find that this layer is anisotropic, unlike the bulk of the lower mantle above, which is isotropic. The causal mechanism for this anisotropy remains elusive, though its organisation is likely to be imposed by deformation associated with mantle convection. The subduction of the Tethys ocean (since 180 Ma) is predicted to have deposited slab material in D'' in circum-Pacific regions, making these regions cold, encouraging the phase transformation in the MgSiO3 polymorph bridgmanite to a post-perovskite (ppv) structure. These regions are probably rich in ppv. Here we present new observations of anisotropy from shear wave splitting of ScS phases recorded in the epicentral distance range 50-85 degrees. These observations are corrected for anisotropy in the upper mantle beneath source and receiver. Due to the layout of events and receivers we primarily sample D'' beneath the landward side of the circum-Pacific. A detailed pattern of anisotropy is revealed. Anisotropy predominantly leads to SH fast wave propagation with an inferred average strength of 0.9%. This is consistent with many previous observations. However, we do not limit our observations to the SH/SV system. Many observations show non SH/SV fast polarisation. We interpret these data for tilted transverse isotropy (TTI) style anisotropy. We resolve non-radial anisotropy at unprecedented global scale, in turn placing new constraints on the D'' flow field. We test the ability of the flow model TX2008 (Simmons et al., 2009) to fit our observations. This is achieved by modelling the development of a lattice preferred orientation texture of a ppv layer subject to this flow field using a visco-plastic self consistent theory (Walker et al., 2011). Due to uncertainty in the slip system of ppv three candidate glide planes are trialled: (100)/{110}, (010), and (001). The seismic anisotropy of these models is

  5. Reactive Nitrogen Distribution and Partitioning in the North American Troposphere and Lowermost Stratosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, H. B.; Salas, L.; Herlth, D.; Kolyer, R.; Czech, E.; Avery, M.; Crawford, J. H.; Pierce, B.; Sachse, G. W.; Blake, D. R.; Cohen, R. C.; Dibb, J.; Huey, G.; Hudman, R. C.; Turquety, S.; Emmons, L. K.; FLocke, F.; Tang, Y.; Carmichael, G. R.; Horowitz, L. W.

    2007-01-01

    A comprehensive group of reactive nitrogen species (NO, NO2, HNO3, HO2NO2, PANs, alkyl nitrates, and aerosol-NO3) were measured in the troposphere and lowermost stratosphere over North America and the Atlantic during July/August 2004 (INTEX-A) from the NASA DC-8 platform (0.1-12 km). Less reactive nitrogen species (HCN and CH3CN), that are also unique tracers of biomass combustion, were also measured along with a host of other gaseous (CO, VOC, OVOC, halocarbon) and aerosol tracers. Clean background air as well as air with influences from biogenic emissions, anthropogenic pollution, biomass combustion, and stratosphere was sampled both over continental U. S., Atlantic and Pacific. The North American upper troposphere was found to be greatly influenced by both lightning NO(x) and surface pollution lofted via convection and contained elevated concentrations of PAN, ozone, hydrocarbons, and NO(x). Under polluted conditions PAN was a dominant carrier of reactive nitrogen in the upper troposphere while nitric acid dominated in the lower troposphere. Peroxynitric acid (HO2NO2) was present in sizable concentrations always peaking at around 8 km. Aerosol nitrate appeared to be mostly contained in large soil based particles in the lower troposphere. Plumes from Alaskan fires contained large amounts of PAN and very little enhancement in ozone. Observational data suggest that lightning was a far greater contributor to NO(x) in the upper troposphere than previously believed. NO(x) and NO(y) reservoir appeared to be in steady state only in the middle troposphere where NO(x)/NO(y) was independent of air mass age. A first comparison of observed data with simulations from four 3-D models shows significant differences between observations and models as well as among models. These uncertainties likely propagate themselves in satellites derived NOx data. Observed data are interpreted to suggest that soil sinks of HCN/CH3CN are at best very small. We investigate the partitioning and

  6. A new genus of fossil Mymaridae (Hymenoptera) from Cretaceous amber and key to Cretaceous mymarid genera.

    PubMed

    Poinar, George; Huber, John T

    2011-01-01

    Myanmymar aresconoidesgen n., sp. n. is described from one female in Burmese amber, dated as about 100 my. It is similar to Arescon on wing features but is unique among Mymaridae in having distinctly segmented palpi. It is the fifth mymarid genus definitely referable to the Cretaceous period. A key to Cretaceous mymarid genera is presented and the features of Myanmymar are compared with the other Cretaceous and extant mymarid genera. PMID:22259293

  7. A new genus of fossil Mymaridae (Hymenoptera) from Cretaceous amber and key to Cretaceous mymarid genera

    PubMed Central

    Poinar Jr., George; Huber, John T.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Myanmymar aresconoides gen n., sp. n. is described from one female in Burmese amber, dated as about 100 my. It is similar to Arescon on wing features but is unique among Mymaridae in having distinctly segmented palpi. It is the fifth mymarid genus definitely referable to the Cretaceous period. A key to Cretaceous mymarid genera is presented and the features of Myanmymar are compared with the other Cretaceous and extant mymarid genera. PMID:22259293

  8. Early Cretaceous angiosperms and beetle evolution

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bo; Zhang, Haichun; Jarzembowski, Edmund A.

    2013-01-01

    The Coleoptera (beetles) constitute almost one–fourth of all known life-forms on earth. They are also among the most important pollinators of flowering plants, especially basal angiosperms. Beetle fossils are abundant, almost spanning the entire Early Cretaceous, and thus provide important clues to explore the co-evolutionary processes between beetles and angiosperms. We review the fossil record of some Early Cretaceous polyphagan beetles including Tenebrionoidea, Scarabaeoidea, Curculionoidea, and Chrysomeloidea. Both the fossil record and molecular analyses reveal that these four groups had already diversified during or before the Early Cretaceous, clearly before the initial rise of angiosperms to widespread floristic dominance. These four beetle groups are important pollinators of basal angiosperms today, suggesting that their ecological association with angiosperms probably formed as early as in the Early Cretaceous. With the description of additional well-preserved fossils and improvements in phylogenetic analyses, our knowledge of Mesozoic beetle–angiosperm mutualisms will greatly increase during the near future. PMID:24062759

  9. Biostratigraphy of Echinoid spines, Cretaceous of Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Kirkland, P.L.

    1984-04-01

    Echinoid (sea urchin) spines from Cretaceous strata have widely varying morphology. They are common, and most are small enough to be recovered from well cuttings. Many forms have restricted ranges; consequently, echinoid spine have substantial biostratigraphic utility. There have been established 115 form taxa of echinoid spines and 14 form taxa of ophiuroid-asteroid spines for the Cretaceous of Texas. The specimens used for establishing the form taxa were processed from 533 outcrop samples (78 localities) from 30 Cretaceous formations, each with a well-defined age based on faunal zones of ammonites and Foraminifera. A dichotomous key in 9 parts and a catalog of scanning electron micrographs (87 plates) have been set up to assist identification of the form taxa. Range charts for the echinoid and ophiuroid-asteroid form taxa have utility through the Cretaceous of much of the Gulf Coastal area. The most precise zonation has been possible for the Albian.

  10. The elasticity of the MgSiO3 post-perovskite phase in the Earth's lowermost mantle.

    PubMed

    Iitaka, T; Hirose, K; Kawamura, K; Murakami, M

    2004-07-22

    MgSiO3 perovskite has been assumed to be the dominant component of the Earth's lower mantle, although this phase alone cannot explain the discontinuity in seismic velocities observed 200-300 km above the core-mantle boundary (the D" discontinuity) or the polarization anisotropy observed in the lowermost mantle. Experimental and theoretical studies that have attempted to attribute these phenomena to a phase transition in the perovskite phase have tended to simply confirm the stability of the perovskite phase. However, recent in situ X-ray diffraction measurements have revealed a transition to a 'post-perovskite' phase above 125 GPa and 2,500 K--conditions close to those at the D" discontinuity. Here we show the results of first-principles calculations of the structure, stability and elasticity of both phases at zero temperature. We find that the post-perovskite phase becomes the stable phase above 98 GPa, and may be responsible for the observed seismic discontinuity and anisotropy in the lowermost mantle. Although our ground-state calculations of the unit cell do not include the effects of temperature and minor elements, they do provide a consistent explanation for a number of properties of the D" layer. PMID:15269765

  11. Lowermost Mantle Velocity Estimations Beneath the Central North Atlantic Area from Pdif Observed at Balkan, East Mediterranean, and American Stations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivan, Marian; Ghica, Daniela Veronica; Gosar, Andrej; Hatzidimitriou, Panagiotis; Hofstetter, Rami; Polat, Gulten; Wang, Rongjiang

    2015-02-01

    Lowermost mantle velocity in the area 15°S-70°N latitude/60°W-5° W longitude is estimated using two groups of observations, complementary to each other. There are 894 Pdif observations at stations in the Balkan and Eastern Mediterranean areas from 15 major earthquakes in Central and South America. Another 218 Pdif observations are associated with four earthquakes in Greece/Turkey and one event in Africa, recorded by American stations. A Pdif slowness tomographic approach of the structures immediately above the core-to-mantle boundary (CMB) is used, incorporating corrections for ellipticity, station elevation and velocity perturbations along the ray path. A low-velocity zone above CMB with a large geographical extent, approximately in the area (35-65°N) × (40-20°W), appears to have the velocity perturbations exceeding the value actually assumed by some global models. Most likely, it is extended beneath western Africa. A high-velocity area is observed west of the low-velocity zone. The results suggest that both Cape Verde and Azorean islands are located near transition areas from low-to-high velocity values in the lowermost mantle.

  12. Volcanic influence on background sulfurous and carbonaceous aerosol in the Lowermost Stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Friberg, J.; Martinsson, B. G.; Andersson, S. M.; Brenninkmeijer, C. A. M.; Hermann, M.; van Velthoven, P. F. J.; Zahn, A.

    2012-04-01

    Previous measurements in the upper troposphere (UT) and the lowermost stratosphere (LS) have indicated the presence of a carbonaceous component in the aerosol (Murphy et al.,1998; Nguyen et al., 2008; Martinsson et al., 2009). Here the occurrence of carbonaceous and sulfurous particles around the tropopause is investigated. The data were taken from the CARIBIC (Civil Aircraft for Regular Investigation of the atmosphere Based on an Instrument Container) platform, where instruments onboard a Lufthansa passenger aircraft on inter-continental flights are used for examination of the atmospheric composition in the UT/LS at 8-12 km altitude (Brenninkmeijer et al., 2007). CARIBIC undertakes aerosol sampling for chemical characterization, as well as measurements of particle number concentrations and mixing ratios of a large number of trace gases including O3, CO, NO/NOy, Hg, water (gaseous and condensed), greenhouse gases and halogenated hydrocarbons. The CARIBIC dataset also contains data on meteorological conditions. 500 aerosol samples were collected during 150 flights with a sampling time of 100 minutes by an impaction technique (Nguyen et al., 2006). Specimen are then analyzed by quantitative multi-elemental analysis by PIXE (Particle-Induced X-ray Emission) and PESA (Particle Elastic Scattering Analysis) to obtain elemental concentrations for sulfur, iron, titanium, potassium, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen and oxygen among others (Nguyen and Martinsson, 2007). The present study is based on samples collected in the LS from May 2005- August 2008. Concentrations of particulate carbon and sulfur in the LS is shown to follow seasonal cycles, correlated with ozone concentrations, with increasing concentrations from the tropopause through the LS. This indicates downward transport from the so-called stratospheric over-world (SOV) as an important source for these species. Sulfuric acid particles are formed in the stratosphere from carbonyl sulfide (OCS) via photochemical

  13. A geostationary thermal infrared sensor to monitor the lowermost troposphere: O3 and CO retrieval studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claeyman, M.; Attié, J.-L.; Peuch, V.-H.; El Amraoui, L.; Lahoz, W. A.; Josse, B.; Ricaud, P.; von Clarmann, T.; Höpfner, M.; Orphal, J.; Flaud, J.-M.; Edwards, D. P.; Chance, K.; Liu, X.; Pasternak, F.; Cantié, R.

    2010-08-01

    This paper describes the capabilities of a nadir thermal infrared (TIR) sensor proposed for embarkation onboard a geostationary platform to monitor ozone (O3) and carbon monoxide (CO) for air quality (AQ) purposes. To assess the capabilities of this sensor we perform idealized retrieval studies considering typical atmospheric profiles of O3 and CO over Europe with different instrument configurations (signal to noise ratio and spectral sampling interval) using the KOPRA forward model and the KOPRA-fit retrieval scheme based on the Tikhonov-Phillips regularization. We then select a configuration, referred to as GEO-TIR, optimized for providing information in the lowermost troposphere (LmT; 0-3 km in height). For the GEO-TIR configuration we obtain around 1.5 degrees of freedom for O3 and 2 for CO at altitudes between 0 and 15 km. The error budget of GEO-TIR, calculated taking account of the principal contributions to the error (namely, temperature, measurement error, smoothing error) shows that information in the LmT can be achieved by GEO-TIR. We also retrieve analogous profiles from another geostationary infrared instrument with characteristics similar to the Meteosat Third Generation Infrared Sounder (MTG-IRS) which is dedicated to numerical weather prediction, referred to as GEO-TIR2. Comparison between GEO-TIR and GEO-TIR2 allows us to quantify the added value of GEO-TIR, a mission complementing the AQ observing system. To better characterize the information provided by GEO-TIR and GEO-TIR2 in the LmT, we retrieve two typical profiles of O3 and CO for different thermal contrast ranging from -10 K to 10 K. The shape of the first averaging kernel (corresponding to the surface level) confirms that GEO-TIR has good sensitivity to CO in the LmT and also to O3 for high positive thermal contrast. GEO-TIR2 has very low sensitivity in the LmT to O3 but can have sensitivity to CO with high positive thermal contrast. To quantify these results for a realistic atmosphere, we

  14. Benthic foraminifera at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary around the Gulf of Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alegret, Laia; Molina, Eustoquio; Thomas, Ellen

    2001-10-01

    Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary sections in northeastern Mexico contain marly formations separated by a controversial clastic unit. Benthic foraminifera in seven sections indicate middle and lower bathyal depths of deposition for the marls, with the exception of the upper bathyal northernmost section. Mixed neritic-bathyal faunas were present in the clastic unit, indicating redeposition in the deep basin by mass-wasting processes resulting from the K-T bolide impact in the Gulf of Mexico. Benthic foraminifera in the Mexican sections, and at other deep-sea locations, were not subject to major extinction at the time of impact, but there were temporary changes in assemblage composition. Benthic faunas indicate well- oxygenated bottom waters and mesotrophic conditions during the late Maastrichtian and increased food supply during the latest Maastrichtian. The food supply decreased drastically just after the K-T boundary, possibly because of the collapse of surface productivity. Cretaceous and early Paleogene benthic foraminifera, however, did not exhibit the benthic-pelagic coupling of present-day faunas, as documented by the lack of significant extinction at the K-T collapse of surface productivity. Much of the food supplied to the benthic faunas along this continental margin might have been refractory material transported from land or shallow coastal regions. The decrease in food supply at the K-T boundary might be associated with the processes of mass wasting, which removed surface, food-rich sediment. Benthic faunas show a staggered pattern of faunal recovery in the lowermost Paleogene, consistent with a staged recovery of the vertical organic flux but also with a gradual buildup of organic matter in the sediment.

  15. Dinosaurs and the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution

    PubMed Central

    Lloyd, Graeme T; Davis, Katie E; Pisani, Davide; Tarver, James E; Ruta, Marcello; Sakamoto, Manabu; Hone, David W.E; Jennings, Rachel; Benton, Michael J

    2008-01-01

    The observed diversity of dinosaurs reached its highest peak during the mid- and Late Cretaceous, the 50 Myr that preceded their extinction, and yet this explosion of dinosaur diversity may be explained largely by sampling bias. It has long been debated whether dinosaurs were part of the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution (KTR), from 125–80 Myr ago, when flowering plants, herbivorous and social insects, squamates, birds and mammals all underwent a rapid expansion. Although an apparent explosion of dinosaur diversity occurred in the mid-Cretaceous, coinciding with the emergence of new groups (e.g. neoceratopsians, ankylosaurid ankylosaurs, hadrosaurids and pachycephalosaurs), results from the first quantitative study of diversification applied to a new supertree of dinosaurs show that this apparent burst in dinosaurian diversity in the last 18 Myr of the Cretaceous is a sampling artefact. Indeed, major diversification shifts occurred largely in the first one-third of the group's history. Despite the appearance of new clades of medium to large herbivores and carnivores later in dinosaur history, these new originations do not correspond to significant diversification shifts. Instead, the overall geometry of the Cretaceous part of the dinosaur tree does not depart from the null hypothesis of an equal rates model of lineage branching. Furthermore, we conclude that dinosaurs did not experience a progressive decline at the end of the Cretaceous, nor was their evolution driven directly by the KTR. PMID:18647715

  16. Satellite observation of lowermost tropospheric ozone by multispectral synergism of IASI thermal infrared and GOME-2 ultraviolet measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuesta, Juan; Eremenko, Maxim; Liu, Xiong; Dufour, Gaëlle; Cai, Zhaonan; Höpfner, Michael; von Clarmann, Thomas; Sellitto, Pasquale; Forêt, Gilles; Gaubert, Benjamin; Beekmann, Matthias; Orphal, Johannes; Chance, Kelly; Spurr, Robert; Flaud, Jean-Marie

    2013-04-01

    Lowermost tropospheric ozone is a major factor determining air quality in densely populated megacities. During pollution events, knowledge on the 3D regional distribution of ozone in and around these urban areas is key for assessing its impact on health of population and ecosystems damages. Temporal and spatial coverage of spaceborne observations are particularly fitted for monitoring tropospheric ozone spatial distribution at the regional scale and offers a great potential for improving air quality forecasting with numerical regional models. However, current tropospheric ozone retrievals using uncoupled either ultraviolet (UV) or thermal infrared (TIR) spaceborne observations show limited sensitivity to lowermost troposphere ozone (up to 3 km of altitude), which is the major concern for air quality, and they are mainly sensitive to ozone at the free Troposphere (at lowest 3-4 km of altitude). In this framework, we have developed a new multispectral approach for observing lowermost tropospheric ozone from space by synergism of atmospheric TIR radiances observed by IASI and earth UV reflectances measured by GOME-2. Both instruments are onboard the series of MetOp satellites (in orbit since 2006 and expected until 2022) and their scanning capabilities offer global coverage every day, with a relatively fine ground pixel resolution (12-km-diameter pixels spaced by 25 km for IASI at nadir). Our technique uses altitude-dependent Tikhonov-Phillips-type constraints, which optimize sensitivity to lower tropospheric ozone. It integrates the VLIDORT and KOPRA radiative transfer codes for simulating UV reflectance and TIR radiance, respectively. We have used our method to analyse real observations over Europe during an ozone pollution episode in the summer of 2009. The results show that the multispectral synergism of IASI (TIR) and GOME-2 (UV) enables the observation of the spatial distribution of ozone plumes in the lowermost troposphere (LMT, from the surface up to 3 km msl

  17. A late Albian ammonite assemblage from the mid- Cretaceous succession at Annopol, Poland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kennedy, William J.; Machalski, Marcin

    2015-12-01

    A previously unrecorded ammonite assemblage, comprising Lepthoplites sp., Callihoplites tetragonus (Seeley, 1865), C. cf. tetragonus, Arrhaphoceras cf. substuderi Spath, 1923, Cantabrigites sp., Stoliczkaiella (Stoliczkaiella) sp., Hamites cf. duplicatus Pictet and Campiche, 1861, H. cf. subvirgulatus Spath, 1941, and H. cf. venetzianus Pictet, 1847, is described from the mid-Cretaceous condensed succession at Annopol, Poland. These specimens are preserved as pale phosphates or sandstone moulds in a bed of reworked phosphatic nodules near the top of the Albian. This assemblage has many species in common with the late late Albian faunas from condensed deposits of England, Switzerland, and France. The presence of Callihoplites tetragonus indicates the lowermost upper upper Albian Mortoniceras fallax Zone. The ammonites studied are the youngest elements in the phosphate bed, which also contains taxa as old as the middle Albian Hoplites dentatus Zone. This bed originated through condensation and reworking of nodules and fossils in a period of low net sedimentation rate, being probably a reflection of a sea-level drop at the boundary between the classic ammonite zones of Mortoniceras inflatum and Stoliczkaiella dispar.

  18. The Cretaceous/Paleogene Transition on the East Tasman Plateau, Southwestern Pacific

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schellenberg, Stephen A.; Brinkhuis, Henk; Stickley, Catherine E.; Fuller, Michael; Kyte, Frank T.; Williams, Graham L.

    2004-01-01

    Ocean Drilling Program Leg 189 recovered a potentially complete shallow marine record of the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary (KPB) at Site 1172 on the East Tasman Plateau. Here we present high-resolution (cm-scale) data from micropaleontology, geochemistry, sedimentology, and paleomagnetism that provide no evidence for a complete KPB, but instead suggest a boundary-spanning hiatus of at least 0.8 Ma. We interpret this hiatus to represent the sequence boundary between the uppermost Maastrichtian Tal.1 and lowermost Danian Ta1.2/ Da- 1 3rd-order sequence stratigraphic cycles. Microfloral assemblages indicate generally shallow paleodepths, restricted circulation, and eutrophic conditions through the section. Paleodepths progressively shallow through the late Maastrichtian, while more oceanic and warmer conditions dominate the early Danian. The Site 1172 KPB section is broadly comparable to other southern highlatitude sections in Antarctica and New Zealand, but appears to record a shallower and more restricted environment that permitted a eustatically-driven hiatus across the KPB mass extinction event.

  19. Step-wise extinctions at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary and their climatic implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maurrasse, Florentin J-M. R.

    1988-01-01

    A comparative study of planktonic foraminifera and radiolarian assemblages from the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary section of the Beloc Formation in the southern Peninsula of Haiti, and the lowermost Danian sequence of the Micara Formation in southern Cuba reveals a remarkable pattern of step-wise extinctions. This pattern is consistent in both places despite the widely different lithologies of the two formations. Because of a step-wise extinction and the delayed disappearance of taxa known to be more representative of cooler water realms, it is inferred that a cooling trend which characterized the close of the Maastrichtian and the onset of the Tertiary had the major adverse effect on the existing biota. Although repetitive lithologic and faunal fluctuations throughout the Maastrichtian sediments found at Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP) site 146/149 in the Caribbean Sea indicate variations reminiscent of known climatically induced cycles in the Cenozoic, rapid biotic succession appears to have taken place during a crisis period of a duration greater than 2 mission years. Widespread and abundant volcanic activities recorded in the Caribbean area during the crisis period gives further credence to earlier contention that intense volcanism may have played a major role in exhacerbating pre-existing climatic conditions during that time.

  20. Late Cretaceous- Cenozoic history of deciduousness and the terminal Cretaceous event.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolfe, J.A.

    1987-01-01

    Deciduousness in mesic, broad-leaved plants occurred in disturbed, middle-latitude environments during the Late Cretaceous. Only in polar environments in the Late Cretaceous was the deciduous element dominant, although of low diversity. The terminal Cretaceous event resulted in wide-spread selection for plants of deciduous habit and diversification of deciduous taxa, thus leaving a lasting imprint on Northern Hemisphere vegetation. Various environmental factors have played important roles in subsequent diversification of mesic, broad-leaved deciduous taxa and in origination and decline of broad-leaved deciduous forests. Low diversity and rarity of mesic deciduous plants in the post-Cretaceous of the Southern Hemisphere indicate that the inferred 'impact winter' of the terminal Cretaceous event had little effect on Southern Hemisphere vegetation and climate. -Author

  1. Constraining the Geological Time Scale for the Upper Cretaceous in the Edmonton Group: Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heredia, B.; Gaylor, J. R.; Hilgen, F.; Kuiper, K.; Mezger, K.; Wijbrans, J. R.; Quidelleur, X.; Huesing, S.

    2011-12-01

    The Cretaceous period records evidence of sea-level changes, remarkably cyclic sedimentation, major perturbations in carbon cycles during anoxic events, and large scale igneous activity. Astronomically-tuned time scales are only partially consistent with recalculated Ar-Ar constraints for the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary, but differ in number and tuning of 405-kyr eccentricity related cycles. The exposures of Upper Cretaceous strata along the Red Deer River (Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin) offer a unique opportunity to examine aspects of marine, tectonic, and climatic influenced sediments. The uppermost part of the Knudsen Farm section is a well-preserved continuous section, mainly composed by climatically controlled alternations of silt and organic rich horizons, in which altered volcanic ash layers have been deposited. In this section, the K-Pg boundary has been placed at the base of a prominent coal layer (Nevis coal), approx. 24 m from the base of the c29r. We present a compilation of paleomagnetic data, chemical, colour and magnetic susceptibility proxies, and Ar-Ar, K-Ar and U-Pb (CA-TIMS) for the uppermost part of the Maastrichtian, including the base of the c29r to the K-Pg boundary and up to the lowermost Danian. High-resolution radioisotopic ages and the multi-proxy lithological and geochemical datasets are used to develop a cyclostratigraphic reconstruction of this interval, thus permitting the synchronisation of rock clocks close to the K-Pg boundary. This research is funded by the European Community's Seventh Framework Program (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no [215458].

  2. Cretaceous shelf-sea chalk deposits

    SciTech Connect

    Hattin, D.E.

    1988-01-01

    The word ''chalk'' is linked etymologically to the Cretaceous, but chalky facies neither dominate that system nor are confined to it. As used commonly, the term ''chalk'' refers to a variety of marine limestone that is white to light gray very fine grained, soft and friable, porous, and composed predominantly of calcitic skeletal remains, especially those derived from coccolithophores. No simple definition suffices to embrace all Cretaceous chalks, which include sandy, marly, shelly, phospatic, glauconitic, dolomitic, pyritic and organic-rich lithotypes. Most of the world's exposed Cretaceous chalk deposits were formed at shelf depths rather than in the deep sea. Cretaceous shelf-sea chalks are developed most extensively in northern Europe, the U.S. Gulf Coastal Plain and Western Interior, and the Middle East, with lesser occurrences alo in Australia. Most Cretaceous shelf-sea chalks formed in the temperature zones, and in relatively deep water. Cretaceous chalks deposited on well-oxygenated sea floors are bioturbated and massive where deficient in terrigenous detritus, or bioturbated and rhythmically interbedded with argillaceous units where influx of terrigenous detritus varied systematically with climate changes. Accumulation of sufficient pelagic mud to form vast deposits of Cretaceous shelf-sea chalk required (1) sustained high productivity of calareous plankton, (2) extensive development of stable shelf and continental platform environments, (3) highstands of seal level, (4) deficiency of aragonitic skeletal material in chalk-forming sediments, and (5) low rates of terrigenous detrital influx. These conditions were met at different times in different places, even within the same general region.

  3. Impact of different Asian source regions on the composition of the Asian monsoon anticyclone and on the extratropical lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogel, B.; Günther, G.; Müller, R.; Grooß, J.-U.; Riese, M.

    2015-04-01

    The impact of different boundary layer source regions in Asia on the chemical composition of the Asian monsoon anticyclone, considering its intraseasonal variability in 2012, is analysed by CLaMS simulations using artificial emission tracers. Our simulations show that the Asian monsoon anticyclone is highly variable in location and shape and oscillates between 2 states: first a symmetric anticyclone and second, an asymmetric anticyclone either elongated or split in two smaller anticyclones. A maximum in the distribution of air originating from Indian/Chinese boundary layer sources is usually found in the core of the symmetric anticyclone, in contrast the asymmetric state is characterised by a double peak structure in the horizontal distribution of air originating from India and China. The simulated horizontal distribution of artificial emission tracers for India/China is in agreement with patterns found in satellite measurements of O3 and CO by the Aura Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS). The contribution of different boundary source regions to the Asian monsoon anticyclone strongly depends on its intraseasonal variability and is therefore more complex than hitherto believed, but in general the highest contributions are from North India and Southeast Asia at 380 K. In the early (June to mid-July) and late (mid-August to October) period of the monsoon 2012, contributions of emissions from Southeast Asia are highest and in the intervening period (≈ mid-July to mid-August) emissions from North India have the largest impact. Further, our simulations confirm that the thermal tropopause above the anticyclone constitutes a vertical transport barrier. Enhanced contributions of emission tracers for Asia are found at the northern flank of the Asian monsoon anticyclone between double tropopauses indicating an isentropic transport from the anticyclone into the lowermost stratosphere. After the breakup of the anticyclone, significant contributions of air masses originating in India

  4. Bayesian inference for ultralow velocity zones in the Earth's lowermost mantle: Complex ULVZ beneath the east of the Philippines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pachhai, S.; Tkalčić, H.; Dettmer, J.

    2014-11-01

    Ultralow velocity zones (ULVZs) are small-scale structures with a sharp decrease in S and P wave velocity, and an increase in the density on the top of the Earth's core-mantle boundary. The ratio of S and P wave velocity reduction and density anomaly are important to understanding whether ULVZs consist of partial melt or chemically distinct material. However, existing methods such as forward waveform modeling that utilize 1-D and 2-D Earth-structure models face challenges when trying to uniquely quantify ULVZ properties because of inherent nonuniqueness and nonlinearity. This paper develops a Bayesian inversion for ULVZ parameters and uncertainties with rigorous noise treatment to address these challenges. The posterior probability density of the ULVZ parameters (the solution to the inverse problem) is sampled by the Metropolis-Hastings algorithm. To improve sampling efficiency, parallel tempering is applied by simulating a sequence of tempered Markov chains in parallel and allowing information exchange between chains. First, the Bayesian inversion is applied to simulated noisy data for a realistic ULVZ model. Then, measured data sampling the lowermost mantle under the Philippine Sea are considered. Cluster analysis and visual waveform inspection suggest that two distinct classes of ScP (S waves converted to, and reflected as, P waves) waves exist in this region. The distinct waves likely correspond to lateral variability in the lowermost mantle properties in a NE-SW direction. For the NE area, Bayesian model selection identifies a two-layer model with a gradual density increase as a function of depth as optimal. This complex ULVZ structure can be due to the percolation of iron-enriched, molten material in the lowermost mantle. The results for the SW area are more difficult to interpret, which may be due to the limited number of data available (too few waveforms to appropriately reduce noise) and/or complex 2-D and 3-D structures that cannot be explained properly

  5. Satellite observation of lowermost tropospheric ozone by multispectral synergism of IASI thermal infrared and GOME-2 ultraviolet measurements over Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuesta, J.; Eremenko, M.; Liu, X.; Dufour, G.; Cai, Z.; Hoepfner, M.; von Clarmann, T.; Sellitto, P.; Foret, G.; Gaubert, B.; Beekmann, M.; Orphal, J. J.; Chance, K.; Spurr, R. J.; Flaud, J.

    2013-12-01

    Lowermost tropospheric ozone is a major factor determining air quality, which directly affects human health in megacities and causes damages to ecosystems. Monitoring tropospheric ozone is a key societal issue which can be addressed at the regional scale by spaceborne observation. However, current satellite retrievals of tropospheric ozone using uncoupled either ultraviolet (UV) or thermal infrared (TIR) observations show limited sensitivity to ozone at the lowermost troposphere (LMT, up to 3 km asl of altitude above sea level), which is the major concern for air quality. In this framework, we have developed a new multispectral approach for observing lowermost tropospheric ozone from space by synergism of atmospheric TIR radiances observed by IASI and earth UV reflectances measured by GOME-2. Both instruments are onboard the series of MetOp satellites (in orbit since 2006 and expected until 2022) and their scanning capabilities offer global coverage every day, with a relatively fine ground pixel resolution (12-km-diameter pixels spaced by 25 km for IASI at nadir). Our technique uses altitude-dependent Tikhonov-Phillips-type constraints, which optimize sensitivity to lower tropospheric ozone. It integrates the VLIDORT and KOPRA radiative transfer codes for simulating UV reflectance and TIR radiance, respectively. We have used our method to analyze real observations over Europe during an ozone pollution episode in the summer of 2009. The results show that the multispectral synergism of IASI (TIR) and GOME-2 (UV) enables the observation of the spatial distribution of ozone plumes in the LMT, in good agreement with the CHIMERE regional chemistry-transport model. In this case study, when high ozone concentrations extend vertically above 3 km asl, they are similarly observed over land by both the multispectral and IASI retrievals. On the other hand, ozone plumes located below 3 km asl are only clearly depicted by the multispectral retrieval (both over land and over ocean

  6. Archaeological predictions for hominid land use in the paleo-Olduvai Basin, Tanzania, during lowermost Bed II times.

    PubMed

    Blumenschine, R J; Peters, C R

    1998-06-01

    We present a preliminary predictive model of Oldowan stone artefact and scavenged larger mammal bone assemblages for 11 landscape facets modeled earlier to occur across a large portion (> 300 km2) of the paleo-Olduvai Basin during lowermost Bed II times. This second phase of model-building is based on our earlier characterizations of the basin's landscape ecostructure and the inter-facet distribution of key resources and hazards probably encountered by Late Pliocene hominids (Peters & Blumenschine, 1995, 1996). Our current extension of the model of hominid-landscape interactions specifies additional theoretical components, including: (1) the assumed capabilities of Oldowan hominids (presumably Homo habilis, primarily); (2) the landscape-facet-specific tasks they carried out; (3) the immediate stone and bone task residues they produced; and (4) the predicted composition, condition, density, and clustering of stone artefact and butchered and unbutchered bone assemblages for each facet. We develop ecological linkages between these new and formerly reported modeling components, the most fundamental of which is the facet-specific degree of tree/shrub cover abundance, and the correlated degree of competition among larger carnivores and hominids for scavengeable larger mammal carcasses. These factors condition variability among landscape facets in scavenging opportunities encountered by hominids, which in our model is the major predictor of bone and stone artefact assemblage composition. The predictive value of scavenging reflects the bias of paleoanthropological traces toward technology and butchery in their landscape context, but the model is surprisingly insensitive to what are usually thought to be critical social components of hominid land use. The predictions for the traces of hominid-landscape interactions modeled herein can be tested in the future against the landscape archaeological sample being excavated from lowermost Bed II by the Olduvai Landscape

  7. Sound velocity measurements of CaSiO3 perovskite to 133 GPa and implications for lowermost mantle seismic anomalies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kudo, Yuki; Hirose, Kei; Murakami, Motohiko; Asahara, Yuki; Ozawa, Haruka; Ohishi, Yasuo; Hirao, Naohisa

    2012-10-01

    We report the measurements of aggregate shear velocity (VS) of CaSiO3 perovskite (CaPv) at high pressure (P) between 32 and 133 GPa and room temperature (T) on the basis of Brillouin spectroscopy. The sample had a tetragonal perovskite structure throughout the experiments. The measured P-VS data show the shear modulus and its pressure derivative at ambient condition to be G0=115.8 GPa and G'=1.20, respectively. The zero-pressure shear velocity is determined to be VS0=5.23 km/s, in good agreement with the previous estimate inferred from the ultrasonic measurements on Ca(Si,Ti)O3 perovskite at 1 bar. Our experimental results are broadly consistent with the earlier calculations on tetragonal CaPv but exhibit lower velocity at equivalent pressure. Such tetragonal CaPv is present in cold subducting slabs and possibly in wide areas of the lowermost mantle. While primitive mantle includes certain amount of CaPv, a depleted peridotite (former harzburgite) layer in subducted oceanic lithosphere is deficient in CaPv and enriched in ferropericlase in the lower mantle. Such harzburgite exhibits 0.9% faster VS and 0.7% slower bulk sound velocity (VΦ) at the lowermost mantle P-T conditions if CaPv is present in the tetragonal form in the surrounding mantle. The observed fast VS and slow VΦ anomalies in the D" layer underneath the circum-Pacific region might be attributed in large part in the presence of subducted harzburgitic materials.

  8. The Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary in the Brazos River area (Texas): new sections and revised interpretations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, M.; Leighton, A.; Yancey, T.; Miller, B.; Smart, C.; Twitchett, R.

    2012-04-01

    The Brazos River area of Texas is famous for outcrops of the K/Pg transition and lowermost Paleocene strata. A number of new, un-described sections have been investigated and they provide biostratigraphical and sedimentological information on the events preceding, during and following the Chixculub impact event. The mudstones of the Corsicana Formation (Maastrichtian) contain a number of very thin volcanic ashes, including the yellow/white gypsum-rich horizon incorrectly regarded by some workers as evidence of a pre-K/Pg boundary impact. The mudstones of the Corsicana Mudstone Fm (uppermost Maastrichtian) were significantly eroded by the end-Cretaceous tsunami and the surficial unconsolidated muds as well as a thickness of lithified mudstone eroded and put into suspension, thereby providing the reworked Cretaceous assemblages of microfossils recorded by a number of authors. Erosional relief on the 75-100 m deep sea floor is visible in Cottonmouth Creek and the new River Bank South section as a series of ridges and erosional troughs, trending NW-SE. Trough lows are in-filled with mud-matrix mass flow deposits containing large blocks of Maastrichtian mudstones and transported concretions. These are overlain with granular shell-rich sediments containing spherules, fish teeth, bone fragments and re-worked foraminifera and hummocky cross-stratified storm sands with mudstone inter-beds. Sea floor ridges remained exposed to open marine waters and were colonized with a thin oyster pavement before burial by Kincaid Formation mudstones and siltstones. A return to quiet water conditions during the earliest Paleocene is recorded in a new 3-6 m section of foraminifera-rich mudstones, siltstones and sandstones bounded above and below with zones of carbonate and pyrite concretions, best seen in the River bank South section. The foraminiferal sand unit contains steinkerns and phosphatic concretions indicative of a condensed deposit. The P1a/P1b zonal boundary lies near the top of

  9. Quantifying the Impact of the North American Monsoon and Deep Midlatitude Convection on the Subtropical Lowermost Stratosphere using in Situ Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weinstock, E. M.; Pittman, J. V.; Sayres, D. S.; Smith, J. B.; Anderson, J. G.; Wofsy, S. C.; Xueref, I.; Gerbig, C.; Daube, B. C.; Pfister, L.; Richard, E. C.; Ridley, B. A.; Weinheimer, A. J.; Jost, H.-J.; Lopez, J. P.; Lowenstein, M.; Thompson, T. L.

    2007-01-01

    The chemical composition of the lowermost stratosphere exhibits both spatial and temporal variability depending upon the relative strength of (1) isentropic transport from the tropical tropopause layer (TTL), (2) diabatic descent from the midlatitude and northern midlatitude stratosphere followed by equatorward isentropic transport, and (3) diabatic ascent from the troposphere through convection. In situ measurements made in the lowermost stratosphere over Florida illustrate the additional impact of equatorward flow around the monsoon anticyclone. This flow carries, along with older stratospheric air, the distinct signature of deep midlatitude convection. We use simultaneous in situ measurements of water vapor (H2O), ozone (O3), total odd nitrogen (NOy), carbon dioxide (CO2), and carbon monoxide (CO) in the framework of a simple box model to quantify the composition of the air sampled in the lowermost stratosphere during the mission on the basis of tracer mixing ratios ascribed to the source regions for these transport pathways. The results show that in the summer, convection has a significant impact on the composition of air in the lowermost stratosphere, being the dominant source of water vapor up to the 380 K isentrope. The implications of these results extend from the potential for heterogeneous ozone loss resulting from the increased frequency and lifetime of cirrus near the local tropopause, to air with increased water vapor that as part of the equatorward flow associated with the North American monsoon can become part of the general circulation.

  10. Late Cretaceous vicariance in Gondwanan amphibians.

    PubMed

    Van Bocxlaer, Ines; Roelants, Kim; Biju, S D; Nagaraju, J; Bossuyt, Franky

    2006-01-01

    Overseas dispersals are often invoked when Southern Hemisphere terrestrial and freshwater organism phylogenies do not fit the sequence or timing of Gondwana fragmentation. We used dispersal-vicariance analyses and molecular timetrees to show that two species-rich frog groups, Microhylidae and Natatanura, display congruent patterns of spatial and temporal diversification among Gondwanan plates in the Late Cretaceous, long after the presumed major tectonic break-up events. Because amphibians are notoriously salt-intolerant, these analogies are best explained by simultaneous vicariance, rather than by oceanic dispersal. Hence our results imply Late Cretaceous connections between most adjacent Gondwanan landmasses, an essential concept for biogeographic and palaeomap reconstructions. PMID:17183706

  11. A Cretaceous Hoofed Mammal from India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prasad, G. V. R.; Verma, O.; Sahni, A.; Parmar, V.; Khosla, A.

    2007-11-01

    The sedimentary record documenting the northward drift of India (Late Cretaceous to late Early Eocene) has recently provided important clues to the evolution, radiation, and dispersal of mammals. Here, we report a definitive Late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) archaic ungulate (Kharmerungulatum vanvaleni genus et species nova) from the Deccan volcano-sedimentary sequences exposed near Kisalpuri village in Central India. This find has important implications for the origin and diversification of early ungulates and raises three possible paleobiogeographic scenarios: (i) Were archaic ungulates cosmopolitan in distribution? (ii) Was Kharmerungulatum an immigrant from Western Asia? (iii) Did archaic ungulates originate in India?

  12. An opilioacarid mite in Cretaceous Burmese amber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunlop, Jason A.; de Oliveira Bernardi, Leopoldo Ferreira

    2014-09-01

    A fossil opilioacarid mite (Parasitiformes: Opilioacarida) in Burmese amber is described as ? Opilioacarus groehni sp. nov. This ca. 99 Ma record (Upper Cretaceous: Cenomanian) represents only the third fossil example of this putatively basal mite lineage, the others originating from Eocene Baltic amber (ca. 44-49 Ma). Our new record is not only the oldest record of Opilioacarida, but it is also one of the oldest examples of the entire Parasitiformes clade. The presence of Opilioacarida—potentially Opiloacarus—in the Cretaceous of SE Asia suggests that some modern genus groups were formerly more widely distributed across the northern hemisphere, raising questions about previously suggested Gondwanan origins for these mites.

  13. The last dicynodont: an Australian Cretaceous relict.

    PubMed Central

    Thulborn, Tony; Turner, Susan

    2003-01-01

    Some long-forgotten fossil evidence reveals that a dicynodont (mammal-like reptile of the infraorder Dicynodontia) inhabited Australia as recently as the Early Cretaceous, ca. 110 Myr after the supposed extinction of dicynodonts in the Late Triassic. This remarkably late occurrence more than doubles the known duration of dicynodont history (from ca. 63 Myr to ca. 170 Myr) and betrays the profound impact of geographical isolation on Australian terrestrial faunas through the Mesozoic. Australia's late-surviving dicynodont may be envisaged as a counterpart of the ceratopians (horned dinosaurs) in Cretaceous tetrapod faunas of Asia and North America. PMID:12803915

  14. Early colonization of metazoans in the deep-water: Evidences from the lowermost Cambrian black shales of South China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, M.-Y.; Yang, A.-H.; Zhang, J.-M.; Li, G.-X.; Yang, X.-L.

    2003-04-01

    Diversity of metazoans is high in the deep-water of the present ocean. But it is unknown that when the metazoans began to colonize in the deep-water and what kinds of metazoans first colonized in the deep-water since origin and radiation of metazoans during the Precambrian-Cambrian transition interval. Up to the present, colonization of the deep-sea began in the Ordovician. Although it is suggested that animals were penetrated into the intermediate water depth during the Precambrian, evidences support such suggestion are based on the problematic Ediacaran-grade fossils. However, almost fossil materials that support the Cambrian Explosion hypothesis were discovered from the lowermost Cambrian shallow-water deposits. The abundant earliest Cambrian mineralized small shelly fossils (SSF) are globally from the shallow-water deposits, and the well-known Chengjiang fauna that may records most complete features of metazoans in the ocean after the Cambrian Explosion, occurs as well in the shallow basin near an old land on the Yangtze Platform. In order to understand ecology of the Cambrian Explosion time interval and how happened of the onshore-offshore trends of metazoans, we focused our attention on collecting fossils in the lowermost Cambrian deposits under the varied facies on the Yangtze Platformm during recent years. Investigations of the shallow-water carbonate facies and the oxygen-depleted deep-water black shale facies revealed additional biological and ecological information that are not recorded in the Chengjiang fauna in the siliclastic shallow-water facies. Here we report our discovery of a particular fossil association from more than 10 sections in the deep-water black shales (Qiongzhusian) in the out shelf and slope area of the Yangtze Platform. The fossil association is composed of pelagic and sessile organisms, including abundant sponges, 3 types of bivalved arthropods, 3 types of tubular animals and few problematic organisms. The fossils have either

  15. Observing lowermost tropospheric ozone pollution with a new multispectral synergic approach of IASI infrared and GOME-2 ultraviolet satellite measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuesta, Juan; Foret, Gilles; Dufour, Gaëlle; Eremenko, Maxim; Coman, Adriana; Gaubert, Benjamin; Beekmann, Matthias; Liu, Xiong; Cai, Zhaonan; Von Clarmann, Thomas; Spurr, Robert; Flaud, Jean-Marie

    2014-05-01

    Tropospheric ozone is currently one of the air pollutants posing greatest threats to human health and ecosystems. Monitoring ozone pollution at the regional, continental and global scale is a crucial societal issue. Only spaceborne remote sensing is capable of observing tropospheric ozone at such scales. The spatio-temporal coverage of new satellite-based instruments, such as IASI or GOME-2, offer a great potential for monitoring air quality by synergism with regional chemistry-transport models, for both inter-validation and full data assimilation. However, current spaceborne observations using single-band either UV or IR measurements show limited sensitivity to ozone in the atmospheric boundary layer, which is the major concern for air quality. Very recently, we have developed an innovative multispectral approach, so-called IASI+GOME-2, which combines IASI and GOME-2 observations, respectively in the IR and UV. This unique multispectral approach has allowed the observation of ozone plumes in the lowermost troposphere (LMT, below 3 km of altitude) over Europe, for the first time from space. Our first analyses are focused on typical ozone pollution events during the summer of 2009 over Europe. During these events, LMT ozone plumes at different regions are produced photo-chemically in the boundary layer, transported upwards to the free troposphere and also downwards from the stratosphere. We have analysed them using IASI+GOME-2 observations, in comparison with single-band methods (IASI, GOME-2 and OMI). Only IASI+GOME-2 depicts ozone plumes located below 3 km of altitude (both over land and ocean). Indeed, the multispectral sensitivity in the LMT is greater by 40% and it peaks at 2 to 2.5 km of altitude over land, thus at least 0.8 to 1 km below that for all single-band methods. Over Europe during the summer of 2009, IASI+GOME-2 shows 1% mean bias and 21% precision for direct comparisons with ozonesondes and also good agreement with CHIMERE model simulations

  16. Integrated stratigraphic studies of Paleocene-lowermost Eocene sequences, New Jersey Coastal Plain: Evidence for glacioeustatic control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harris, Ashley D.; Miller, Kenneth G.; Browning, James V.; Sugarman, Peter J.; Olsson, Richard K.; Cramer, Benjamin S.; Wright, James D.

    2010-08-01

    We describe seven Paleocene to lowermost Eocene sequences in core holes at Island Beach, Bass River, Ancora, Millville, and Sea Girt, NJ (Ocean Drilling Program Leg 150X, 174AX) and analyze benthic foraminiferal assemblages to assess paleodepth changes within sequences. These sequences are referred to as Pa0, Pa1a, Pa1b, Pa2a, Pa2b, Pa3a, and Pa3b. Paleocene sequence boundaries are identified by unconformities and variations in benthic foraminiferal biofacies. We used Q-mode factor analysis and paleoslope modeling to identify three distinct middle-outer neritic benthic foraminiferal assemblages and their associated water depths. Paleodepths during the early Paleocene and deposition of Pa0, Pa1a, and Pa2b were ˜80 m with ˜20 m changes across sequence boundaries. A long-term shallowing occurred through the late Paleocene where paleodepths were ˜50-70 m in Pa3a. This trend drastically changes in the earliest Eocene where the paleodepths of sequence Pa3b were ˜120-150 m. New Jersey Paleocene sequence boundaries correlate with those in other regions and with δ18O increases in the deep sea, suggesting Paleocene eustatic lowerings were associated with ice-growth events.

  17. Contributions of different boundary layer sources in Asia to the Asian monsoon anticyclone and associated transport pathways to the lowermost stratosphere over northern Europe in 2012

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogel, Bärbel; Günther, Gebhard; Müller, Rolf; Grooß, Jens-Uwe; Bozem, Heiko; Hoor, Peter; Krämer, Martina; Müller, Stefan; Zahn, Andreas; Riese, Martin

    2015-04-01

    The impact of different boundary layer sources in Asia to the chemical composition of the air in the Asian monsoon anticyclone in 2012 is analysed by CLaMS model simulations using artificial emission tracers. Our simulations show that the Asian monsoon anticyclone is highly variable in location and shape. The model behaviour is in agreement with satellite measurements of O3 and CO (MLS). The contribution of different boundary sources regions to the Asian monsoon anticyclone is more complex than hitherto believed, but in general the highest contribution are from North India and Southeast Asia at 380 K. In the early (~ June/July) and late period (Sep/Oct) of the monsoon 2012, contributions of emissions from Southeast Asia are highest and in the intervening period (~ August) emissions from North India have the largest impact. Further, long-range transport of air masses from the Asian monsoon anticyclone to the extratropical lowermost stratosphere occurs by eastward migrating smaller anticyclones and filaments separated at the northeastern flank of the anticyclone transporting within approximately 8-14 days water vapour and pollutants into the lowermost stratosphere over northern Europe. Remnants of this long-range transport processes were measured during the TACTS/ESMVal campaign and could be reproduced by our simulations. In addition, emissions from Southeast Asia can be uplifted at the edge of the anticyclone by deep convection and afterwards are entrained into the circulation around the Asian monsoon anticyclone. Moreover, they also experienced diabatic upward transport in the tropics and subsequently isentropic transport polewards occurs at around 380 K with the result that the extratropical lowermost stratosphere is flooded end of September with air masses originating in Southeast Asia. Our simulations demonstrate that emissions from Asia and Southeast Asia have a significant impact on the chemical compositions of the lowermost stratosphere of the northern

  18. Migration of a Late Cretaceous fish.

    PubMed

    Carpenter, Scott J; Erickson, J Mark; Holland, F D

    2003-05-01

    Late Cretaceous sediments from the Western Interior of North America yield exceptionally well preserved fossils that serve as proxies for the rapidly changing climate preceding the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary (about 67-65 Myr ago). Here we reconstruct the ontogenetic history of a Maastrichtian-age fish, Vorhisia vulpes, by using the carbon, oxygen and strontium isotope ratios of four aragonite otoliths collected from the Fox Hills Formation of South Dakota. Individuals of V. vulpes spawned in brackish water (about 70-80% seawater) and during their first year migrated to open marine waters of the Western Interior Seaway, where they remained for 3 years before returning to the estuary, presumably to spawn and die. The mean delta(18)O from the marine growth phase of V. vulpes yields a seawater temperature of 18 degrees C, which is consistent with leaf physiognomy and general-circulation-model temperature estimates for the Western Interior during the latest Maastrichtian. PMID:12721626

  19. Mammalian hairs in Early Cretaceous amber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vullo, Romain; Girard, Vincent; Azar, Dany; Néraudeau, Didier

    2010-07-01

    Two mammalian hairs have been found in association with an empty puparium in a ˜100-million-year-old amber (Early Cretaceous) from France. Although hair is known to be an ancestral, ubiquitous feature in the crown Mammalia, the structure of Mesozoic hair has never been described. In contrast to fur and hair of some Jurassic and Cretaceous mammals preserved as carbonized filaments, the exceptional preservation of the fossils described here allows for the study of the cuticular structure. Results show the oldest direct evidence of hair with a modern scale pattern. This discovery implies that the morphology of hair cuticula may have remained unchanged throughout most of mammalian evolution. The association of these hairs with a possible fly puparium provides paleoecological information and indicates peculiar taphonomic conditions.

  20. The cretaceous opening of the Northeast Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, J.

    1984-01-01

    A continuous rift system from the Rockall Trough through the Faeroe-Shetland Channel, and the Møre and Vøring basins up to the Tromsø and Bear Island basins is inferred to have developed during the Cretaceous. Oceanic crust was generated in its southern part but its width presumably decreases toward the northeast and probably ends in the Møre Basin. This rift/spreading system requires a clockwise rotation of Greenland and the Rockall Plateau during the Cretaceous around a rotation pole at its northern end at about 74°N 21°E. North of the pole of rotation crustal shortening must have occurred. This compression is interpreted to have taken place on West Spitsbergen. The orogeny there is reinterpreted as (1) a Cretaceous folding phase, (2) a phase of overthrusting at the Paleocene-Eocene boundary, and (3) an extensional faulting phase during the Oligocene. This plate-tectonic model can resolve a series of problems in the Northeast Atlantic region: the connection of the Caledonian fronts of Scotland and Greenland can be easily established. The northern ends of the West Shetland Basin and the North Sea graben; the unusual depth of the Møre and Vøring basins; the marked obliqueness of structural trends between the Northeast Greenland shelf and the Norwegian shelf; the fact that the western Hammerfest Basin was intersected by a younger north-south trending graben which formed the deep Tromsø Basin—all these enigmatic observations can be explained by the Cretaceous rift system.

  1. Cretaceous biostratigraphy in the Wyoming thrust belt.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, D.J.; Jacobson, S.R.

    1982-01-01

    In the Cretaceous section of the thrust belt, fossils are especially useful for dating and correlating repetitive facies of different ages in structurally complex terrain. The biostratigraphic zonation for the region is based on megafossils (chiefly ammonites) , which permit accurate dating and correlation of outcrop sections, and which have been calibrated with the radiometric time scale for the Western Interior. Molluscan and vertebrate zone fossils are difficult to obtain from the subsurface, however, and ammonites are restricted to rocks of marine origin. Palynomorphs (plant microfossils) have proven to be the most valuable fossils in the subsurface because they can be recovered from drill cuttings. Palynomorphs also are found in both marine and nonmarine rocks and can be used for correlation between facies. Stratigraphic ranges of selected Cretaceous marine and nonmarine palynomorphs in previously designated reference sections in Fossil Basin, Wyoming are correlated with the occurrence of ammonites and other zone fossils in the same sections. These correlations can be related to known isotopic ages, and they contribute to the calibration of palynomorph ranges in the Cretaceous of the Western Interior. -from Authors

  2. Nitrogen geochemistry of a Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary site in New Zealand

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilmour, Iain; Boyd, Stuart R.

    1988-01-01

    Nitrogen in the basal layer of the K-T boundary clay at Woodside Creek, New Zealand, has an abundance of 1100 ppm, a 20-fold enrichment over Cretaceous and Tertiary values. The enrichment parallels that for Ir and elemental carbon (soot); all decrease over the next 6 mm of the boundary clay. The C/N ratio, assuming the nitrogen to be associated with organic rather than elemental carbon, is approximately 5 for the basal layer compared to 20 to 30 for the remainder of the boundary clay. The correlation between N and Ir abundances appears to persist above the boundary, implying that the N is intimately associated with the primary fallout and remained with it during the secondary redeposition processes that kept the Ir abundance relatively high into the lowermost Tertiary. Apparently the basal layer of the boundary clay represents the accumulation of a substantial quantity of N with an isotopic composition approximately 10 percent heavier than background delta value of N-15 values. If the boundary clay represents an altered impact glass from a meteorite impact than it probably denotes a time period of less than 1 year. Therefore, the changes in nitrogen geochemistry apparently occurred over a very short period of time. The high abundance of N and the correspondingly low C/N ratio may reflect enhanced preservation of organic material as a result of the rapid sweepout and burial of plankton by impact ejecta, with little or no bacterial degradation. It is conceivable that the shift in delta value of N-15 may represent an influx of nitrogen from a different source deposited contemporaneously with the impact ejecta. An interesting possibility is that it may be derived from nitrate, produced from the combustion of atmospheric nitrogen.

  3. Shocked cobbles in Lower Cretaceous Duwon Formation, South Korea: their classification and possible formation mechanisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, Hyoun Soo; Chae, Yong-Un; Kim, Kyung Soo; Kim, Cheng-Bin; Huh, Min

    2016-04-01

    Shocked cobbles are the cobbles having shock-induced deformation structures on the surfaces. The most distinctive macroscopic features are the subparallel fractures and the pervasive surface craters, with or without radial fractures. Until now, these shocked cobbles have been reported mainly in Europe, America, and Africa, but never been found or reported in Korea. Shocked cobbles have recently found in the Lower Cretaceous Duwon Formation in South Korea, which was the second report in Asia. The Duwon Formation consists mainly of conglomerates, gravelly sandstones and intercalated mudstone and shale layers. The shocked cobbles are commonly found in the lowermost clast-supported conglomerate layers, and they show various deformation features, such as pockmarked (circular or elliptical) cobbles, cratered (Hertzian or bowl-shaped) cobbles with or without radial fractures, cobbles showing subparallel fractures, and strongly squashed or heavily dissected cobbles. In general, these deformation structures are considered to have resulted from pressure dissolution by overburden, tectonic compression, and seismic or meteorite impacts. However, the exact formation mechanism is not clearly understood, and still in debate. The shocked cobbles found in the Duwon Formation have similar features to those of previously reported shocked cobbles, especially to Triassic Buntsandstein conglomerates in northeastern Spain. Based on the degree of deformation, the Duwon shocked cobbles can be divided into four types, which are (1) faint contact marks, (2) pitted marks without any fractures, (3) pitted marks with radial or sub-parallel fractures affected by pits, and (4) intensive fractures and heavily dissected fragments. The possible mechanisms for the Duwon shocked cobbles are thought to be crushing process by shear stress and pressure solution.

  4. Crustal structure of the eastern Qinling orogenic belt and implication for reactivation since the Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Zhen; Chen, Y. John

    2016-06-01

    A high resolution crustal model of the eastern Qinling belt and central North China Craton (central NCC) is obtained along a N-S trending profile (corridor) by joint inversion of surface wave and receiver function. The NCC is one of the oldest cratons on Earth and the Qinling belt is the suture zone between the NCC and South China block (SCB). The Qinling belt is characterized by low crustal velocity (< 3.6 km/s) as well as low bulk Vp/Vs ratio (1.66-1.8), suggesting that the mid- to lower crust is predominantly felsic in composition, which could be the consequence of removal of mafic root by delamination in the past. The quartz-rich hence mechanically weak crust beneath the Qinling belt could be responsible for the strain focusing and significant reactivation since the Cretaceous. Beneath the central NCC, a ~ 10 km thick high-velocity layer (3.9-4.1 km/s) is observed just above the Moho, consistent with the regional high bulk Vp/Vs ratio (> 1.8). The forward gravity modeling supports the presence of a high-density layer (3.05 g/cm3) at the base of the crust beneath the central NCC. We propose that the high velocity in the lowermost crust beneath the central NCC is most likely due to the repeated mafic underplating, which also results in high crustal Vp/Vs ratio and is responsible for the rapid crustal uplift during the late Mesozoic.

  5. Chronostratigraphy of the Cretaceous-Oligocene unconformity in Northern Monagas, Eastern Venezuela

    SciTech Connect

    Helenes, J. )

    1993-02-01

    Palynological analyses of several subsurface sections in the autochthonous block in Northern Monagas, eastern Venezuela, show a Cretaceous-Oligocene unconformity. The Maastrichtian to Paleocene sandstones of the San Juan Formation unconformably underlie the Oligocene to Miocene sandstones of the Merecure Formation. Log analyses indicate two stratigraphic sequences within San Juan and two more within Merecure, and integration with paleontological data indicates changes which can be correlated with Haq et al.'s (1988) Sequence Chronostratigraphic Charts as follows: (1) The basal San Juan sandstones represent the late Maastrichtian (68 Ma) drop of seal level and the UZA-4.5/TA-1.1 Sequence Boundary (SB). The Maastrichtian or Maastrichtian to Paleocene San Juan sandstones represent either the TA-1.1 and the TA-1.2 Third-Order Cycles. (2) The late Oligocene sequence overlying the unconformity, represents the TB-1.3 Cycle starting at 26.5 Ma. Within this lower part of the Merecure sediments, an increase in the abundance and diversity of marine palynomorphs represents a maximum transgression correlatable with the 26 Ma Condensed Section contained in the Tb-1.3 Cycle. (3) The upper part of Merecure represents the Tb-1.4 Cycle starting at 25.5 Ma. Within this cycle, the lowermost (Oligocene) sandstones contain almost exclusively terrestrial palynomorphs, while the (Miocene) alternating sands and shales of the upper part contain diverse marine palynomorphs indicating a change from Low Stand Wedge to Transgressive deposits. This change is correlated with the Oligocene/Miocene limit at 25.2 Ma.

  6. The Lower Cretaceous Chouf Sandstone of Lebanon: is it a syn-rift clastic sequence?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hatzenbichler, Georg; Bauer, Harald; Grasemann, Bernhard; Tari, Gabor; Nader, Fadi H.; Church, Jonathan; Schneider, Dave

    2013-04-01

    The lowermost unit of the Cretaceous succession onshore Lebanon is a widespread prominent sandstone formation traditionally known as the "Grès de Base". The Chouf Sandstone is one of the most distinctive geologic units in Lebanon and is extensively quarried as building sand. The formation commonly consists of a brown to white sandstone with associated claystones, shales, locally volcanics and lignites. Based on outcrop samples taken in the central and northern parts of Mount Lebanon the petrographical composition of the typical Chouf Sandstone is dominated by monocrystalline quartz (85-95%) indicating a well-sorted sandstone. Sedimentological observations suggest deposition of the formation was typically in fluvial, coastal plain and deltaic environments. The Chouf Sandstone is variable in thickness, ranging from a few metres to 300 m. In certain areas rapid lateral thickness changes have been reported which may reflect a paleo-topography or syn-depositional block faulting. Similar thickness variations in the underlying Upper Jurassic formations might be interpreted as the result of syn-rift normal faulting. In order to test the syn-rift nature of the Chouf Sandstone, modern high-resolution satellite data sets (with ~ 0.75 m horizontal and 4 m vertical resolution) were used to derive thickness data points for the Chouf Sandstone in NW Lebanon. One important reason to use high-resolution satellite data for onshore Lebanon is the general lack of structural measurements on the existing vintage geologic maps. In lieu of these basic data, the common surface point method was used to derive this information in a consistent manner across the study area. First results obtained by remote sensing techniques do reveal local variations in the thickness of the Chouf Sandstone, on order of tens to hundreds of meters. These isopach variations in a map-view sense are interpreted to be the result of deposition in individual extensional half-grabens in a much larger overall basin

  7. Significance of Tocopherols during Cretaceous Oae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brassell, S. C.

    2013-12-01

    Most biomarker studies of Cretaceous OAE have tended to focus on investigations of hydrocarbon constituents, which means that evidence of environmental conditions contained in the distributions and abundance of more polar components has rarely been utilized with the notable exception of GDGTs as paleotemperature proxies. One group of functionalized lipids, tocopherols, fulfills various critical functions in plants and bacteria, including optimization of photosynthetic activity and macronutrient homeostasis in cyanobacteria. These compounds are often prevalent constituents of immature Cretaceous sediments rich in organic matter (OM) in those instances where analytical protocols have assessed their presence. They occur in Cenomanian-Turonian (OAE2), early Aptian (OAE1a), Valanginian, and other Cretaceous sediments, and their concentrations can exceed 2-5 mg/g dry sediment. One possible explanation for the abundance of tocopherols is that environmental conditions prevailing during OAE led to enhanced biochemical production of these components by phytoplankton, given their key biophysiochemical role of protecting lipids and membranes against oxidative stress. High concentrations of tocopherols (>250 mg/g dry weight) have been reported in haptophytes and marine green algae, and their production in cyanobacteria increases under high light intensity. Hence, environmental conditions during Cretaceous OAE may have been conducive to production of copious amounts of tocopherols by phytoplankton in response to environment stresses. Previous work in contemporary systems has suggested that the propensity of tocopherols to autooxidation would make their survival in sediments unlikely. However, this scenario and interpretation is clearly not applicable during Cretaceous episodes of enhanced OM sequestration and/or dysoxia. Since tocopherols serve to protect plant cells from oxidative damage it seems plausible that they might fulfill a similar function in settling, particulate, and

  8. Cretaceous gastropods: contrasts between tethys and the temperate provinces.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sohl, N.F.

    1987-01-01

    During the Cretaceous Period, gastropod faunas show considerable differences in their evolution between the Tethyan Realm (tropical) and the Temperate Realms to the north and south. Like Holocene faunas, prosobranch, gastropods constitute the dominant part of Cretaceous marine snail faunas. Entomotaeneata and opisthobranchs usually form all of the remainder. In Tethyan faunas the Archaeogastropoda form a consistent high proportion of total taxa but less than the Mesogastropoda throughout the period. In contrast, the Temperate faunas beginning in Albian times show a decline in percentages of archaeogastropod taxa and a significant increase in the Neogastropoda, until they constitute over 50 percent of the taxa in some faunas. The neogastropods never attain high diversity in the Cretaceous of the Tethyan Realm and are judged to be of Temperate Realm origin. Cretaceous Tethyan gastropod faunas are closely allied to those of the 'corallien facies' of the Jurassic and begin the period evolutionarily mature and well diversified. Three categories of Tethyan gastropods are analyzed. The first group consists of those of Jurassic ancestry. The second group orginates mainly during the Barremian and Aptian, reaches a climax in diversification during middle Cretaceous time, and usually declines during the latest Cretaceous. The third group originates late in the Cretaceous and consists of taxa that manage to either survive the Cretaceous-Tertiary crisis or give rise to forms of prominence among Tertiary warm water faunas. Temperate Realm gastropod faunas are less diverse than those of Tethys during the Early Cretaceous. They show a steady increase in diversity, primarily among the Mesogastropoda and Neogastropoda. This trend culminates in latest Cretaceous times when the gastropod assemblages of the clastic provinces of the inner shelf contain an abundance of taxa outstripping that of any other part of the Cretaceous of either realm. Extinction at the Cretaceous

  9. Impact of different Asian source regions on the composition of the Asian monsoon anticyclone and of the extratropical lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogel, B.; Günther, G.; Müller, R.; Grooß, J.-U.; Riese, M.

    2015-12-01

    anticyclone. Air masses originating in Southeast Asia are found both within and outside of the Asian monsoon anticyclone because these air masses experience, in addition to transport within the anticyclone, upward transport at the southeastern flank of the anticyclone and in the tropics. Subsequently, isentropic poleward transport of these air masses occurs at around 380 K with the result that the extratropical lowermost stratosphere in the Northern Hemisphere is flooded by the end of September with air masses originating in Southeast Asia. Even after the breakup of the anticyclonic circulation (around the end of September), significant contributions of air masses originating in India/China are still found in the upper troposphere over Asia. Our results demonstrate that emissions from India, China, and Southeast Asia have a significant impact on the chemical composition of the lowermost stratosphere of the Northern Hemisphere, in particular at the end of the monsoon season in September/October 2012.

  10. Tomographic-Geodynamic Model Comparisons and the Presence of Post-Perovskite and Chemical Heterogeneity in Earth's Lowermost Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koelemeijer, P.; Deuss, A. F.; Ritsema, J.; van Heijst, H. J.; Davies, R.; Schuberth, B. S. A.; Chust, T.

    2014-12-01

    Dynamic processes occurring in the mantle and core interact at the core-mantle boundary (CMB), which marks the largest thermal and compositional interface inside the Earth. This interplay has produced a myriad of complex structures in the lowermost mantle that offer valuable insights into the dynamics of this region. Large-low-shear velocity provinces (LLSVPs) dominate shear wave velocity (Vs) models of the deep mantle. In addition, global tomography studies generally find an increase in the ratio of shear wave to compressional wave velocity (Vp) variations, accompanied by a significant anti-correlation between shear wave and bulk sound velocity (Vc) variations. These seismic characteristics, also observed in the recent SP12RTS tomographic model, have primarily been interpreted in terms of chemical variations but could potentially also be explained by the presence of the deep mantle post-perovskite (pPv) phase. In this contribution, we attempt to interpret the observed seismic characteristics by linking them to dynamic processes occurring in the deep mantle. For this purpose, we compare the shear and compressional wave velocity structure of SP12RTS to mantle structure derived from geodynamic models of mantle convection. We project the geodynamic models into the SP12RTS model parametrization and use its resolution operator to account for the limited tomographic resolution. We include geodynamic models with and without the post-perovskite phase and/or chemical variations and in addition vary the CMB temperature. Although the reparametrization and tomographic filtering significantly affect the obtained mantle structure, we demonstrate that the patterns observed in the ratios and correlations of seismic velocities are robust features. Our tomographic-geodynamic model comparison suggests that the seismic characteristics can be explained by the presence of post-perovskite but it allows no discrimination between isochemical and thermochemical models of mantle convection.

  11. Cretaceous stratigraphic sequences of north-central California suggest a discontinuity in the Late Cretaceous forearc basin

    SciTech Connect

    Haggart, J.W.

    1986-10-01

    The Cretaceous sedimentary succession preserved east of Redding, at the northern end of California's Great Valley, indicates that marine deposition was widespread in the region for only two periods during the Late Cretaceous. If it is assumed that there was minimal Cenozoic offset between the northern Sierra Nevada and eastern Klamath Mountains terranes, Cretaceous sedimentation in this region was most likely restricted to a narrow trough and was not a continuation of the wide, Cretaceous forearc basin of central California. The dissimilar depositional histories of the Redding basin and the Hornbrook basin of north-central California suggest that the basins were not linked continuously during the Late Cretaceous. A thick section of Cretaceous strata beneath the southwestern Modoc Plateau is considered unlikely.

  12. Geochemical characteristics of Cretaceous carbonatites from Angola

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alberti, A.; Castorina, F.; Censi, P.; Comin-Chiaramonti, P.; Gomes, C. B.

    1999-12-01

    The Early Cretaceous (138-130 Ma) carbonatites and associated alkaline rocks of Angola belong to the Paraná-Angola-Etendeka Province and occur as ring complexes and other central-type intrusions along northeast trending tectonic lineaments, parallel to the trend of coeval Namibian alkaline complexes. Most of the Angolan carbonatite-alkaline bodies are located along the apical part of the Moçamedes Arch, a structure representing the African counterpart of the Ponta Grossa Arch in southern Brazil, where several alkaline-carbonatite complexes were also emplaced in the Early Cretaceous. Geochemical and isotopic (C, 0, Sr and Nd) characteristics determined for five carbonatitic occurrences indicate that: (1) the overall geochemical composition, including the OC isotopes, is within the range of the Early and Late Cretaceous Brazilian occurrences from the Paraná Basin; (2) the La versus {La}/{Yb} relationships are consistent with the exsolution of CO i2-rich melts from trachyphonolitic magmas; and (3) the {143Nd}/{144Nd} and {87Sr}/{86Sr} initial ratios are similar to the initial isotopic ratios (129 Ma) of alkaline complexes in northwest Namibia. In contrast, the Lupongola carbonatites have a distinctly different {143Nd}/{144Nd} initial ratio, suggesting a different source. The Angolan carbonatites have SrNd isotopic compositions ranging from bulk earth to time-integrated depleted sources. Since those from eastern Paraguay (at the western fringe of the Paraná-Angola-Etendeka Province) and Brazil appear to be related to mantle-derived melts with time-integrated enriched or B.E. isotopic characteristics, it is concluded that the carbonatites of the Paraná-Angola-Etendeka Province have compositionally distinct mantle sources. Such mantle heterogeneity is attributed to 'metasomatic processes', which would have occurred at ca 0.6-0.7 Ga (Angola, northwest Namibia and Brazil) and ca 1.8 Ga (eastern Paraguay), as suggested by Nd-model ages.

  13. The drainage of Africa since the Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goudie, Andrew S.

    2005-04-01

    Much of the drainage of Africa is relatively youthful. Many of its major rivers have shown substantial changes in their courses since the break up of Gondwanaland in the Cretaceous. In addition, many of the rivers have distinctive morphological characteristics such as inland deltas, cataracts and elbows of capture. Tectonic and climatic changes, including the development of the East African Rift System and the aridification of the Quaternary, help to explain the nature of these rivers. The history of the Saharan rivers, the Niger, the Nile, the Congo, the Cunene, the Zambezi, the Limpopo and the Orange, is reviewed.

  14. Cretaceous - Tertiary Hoploparia species: Occurrence, paleobiogeography and predation context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Shazly, Soheir

    2015-12-01

    The study of Hoploparia species in 25 localities in Northern and Southern Hemispheres from Early Cretaceous to Early Miocene reveals the appearance of 51 species in Early Cretaceous, mostly in Northern Hemisphere, 46 species from Late Cretaceous (42 and 4 carryover from the Early Cretaceous), 7 species from Danian (4 plus 3 carryover from the Late Cretaceous), 7 species from Eocene (6 plus one from the Early Cretaceous), 2 species from Lower Oligocene and the last recorded species Hoploparia persisted in the Early Miocene of Antarctica. The oldest Hoploparia was recorded from Europe and distributed through the Northern and Southern Hemispheres with the facilitation of the Indo-Madagascar sea-way and Hispanic corridor. The tolerance for temperature and water depth as well as the morphological changes in genus Hoploparia in the Late Cretaceous and Tertiary periods, helped some species to survive the K/T event. Drill-hole predation in Hoploparia longimana (Sowerby, 1826) was recorded for the first time from the Lower Cretaceous (Albian) of Egypt.

  15. Using seismic array-processing to enhance observations of PcP waves to constrain lowermost mantle structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ventosa, S.; Romanowicz, B. A.

    2014-12-01

    The topography of the core-mantle boundary (CMB) and the structure and composition of the D" region are essential to understand the interaction between the earth's mantle and core. A variety of seismic data-processing techniques have been used to detect and measure travel-times and amplitudes of weak short-period teleseismic body-waves phases that interact with CMB and D", which is crucial to constrain properties of the lowermost mantle at short wavelengths. Major challenges in enhancing these observations are: (1) increasing signal-to-noise ratio of target phases and (2) isolating them from unwanted neighboring phases. Seismic array-processing can address these problems by combining signals from groups of seismometers and exploiting information that allows to separate the coherent signals from the noise. Here, we focus on the study of the Pacific large-low shear-velocity province (LLSVP) and surrounding areas using differential travel-times and amplitude ratios of the P and PcP phases, and their depth phases. We particularly design scale-dependent slowness filters that do not compromise time-space resolution. This is a local delay-and-sum (i.e. slant-stack) approach implemented in the time-scale domain using the wavelet transform to enhance time-space resolution (i.e. reduce array aperture). We group stations from USArray and other nearby networks, and from Hi-Net and F-net in Japan, to define many overlapping local arrays. The aperture of each array varies mainly according (1) to the space resolution target and (2) to the slowness resolution required to isolate the target phases at each period. Once the target phases are well separated, we measure their differential travel-times and amplitude ratios, and we project these to the CMB. In this process, we carefully analyze and, when possible and significant, correct for the main sources of bias, i.e., mantle heterogeneities, earthquake mislocation and intrinsic attenuation. We illustrate our approach in a series of

  16. Highly resolved observations of trace gases in the lowermost stratosphere and upper troposphere from the Spurt project: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Engel, A.; Bönisch, H.; Brunner, D.; Fischer, H.; Franke, H.; Günther, G.; Gurk, C.; Hegglin, M.; Hoor, P.; Königstedt, R.; Krebsbach, M.; Maser, R.; Parchatka, U.; Peter, Th.; Schell, D.; Schiller, C.; Schmidt, U.; Spelten, N.; Szabo, T.; Weers, U.; Wernli, H.; Wetter, Th.; Wirth, V.

    2005-07-01

    During SPURT (Spurenstofftransport in der Tropopausenregion, trace gas transport in the tropopause region) we performed measurements of a wide range of trace gases with different lifetimes and sink/source characteristics in the northern hemispheric upper troposphere (UT) and lowermost stratosphere (LMS). A large number of in-situ instruments were deployed on board a Learjet 35A, flying at altitudes up to 13.7 km, at times reaching to nearly 380 K potential temperature. Eight measurement campaigns (consisting of a total of 36 flights), distributed over all seasons and typically covering latitudes between 35° N and 75° N in the European longitude sector (10° W-20° E), were performed. Here we present an overview of the project, describing the instrumentation, the encountered meteorological situations during the campaigns and the data set available from SPURT. Measurements were obtained for N2O, CH4, CO, CO2, CFC12, H2, SF6, NO, NOy, O3 and H2O. We illustrate the strength of this new data set by showing mean distributions of the mixing ratios of selected trace gases, using a potential temperature - equivalent latitude coordinate system. The observations reveal that the LMS is most stratospheric in character during spring, with the highest mixing ratios of O3 and NOy and the lowest mixing ratios of N2O and SF6. The lowest mixing ratios of NOy and O3 are observed during autumn, together with the highest mixing ratios of N2O and SF6 indicating a strong tropospheric influence. For H2O, however, the maximum concentrations in the LMS are found during summer, suggesting unique (temperature- and convection-controlled) conditions for this molecule during transport across the tropopause. The SPURT data set is presently the most accurate and complete data set for many trace species in the LMS, and its main value is the simultaneous measurement of a suite of trace gases having different lifetimes and physical-chemical histories. It is thus very well suited for studies of

  17. Highly resolved observations of trace gases in the lowermost stratosphere and upper troposphere from the Spurt project: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Engel, A.; Bönisch, H.; Brunner, D.; Fischer, H.; Franke, H.; Günther, G.; Gurk, C.; Hegglin, M.; Hoor, P.; Königstedt, R.; Krebsbach, M.; Maser, R.; Parchatka, U.; Peter, T.; Schell, D.; Schiller, C.; Schmidt, U.; Spelten, N.; Szabo, T.; Weers, U.; Wernli, H.; Wetter, T.; Wirth, V.

    2006-02-01

    During SPURT (Spurenstofftransport in der Tropopausenregion, trace gas transport in the tropopause region) we performed measurements of a wide range of trace gases with different lifetimes and sink/source characteristics in the northern hemispheric upper troposphere (UT) and lowermost stratosphere (LMS). A large number of in-situ instruments were deployed on board a Learjet 35A, flying at altitudes up to 13.7 km, at times reaching to nearly 380 K potential temperature. Eight measurement campaigns (consisting of a total of 36 flights), distributed over all seasons and typically covering latitudes between 35° N and 75° N in the European longitude sector (10° W-20° E), were performed. Here we present an overview of the project, describing the instrumentation, the encountered meteorological situations during the campaigns and the data set available from SPURT. Measurements were obtained for N2O, CH4, CO, CO2, CFC12, H2, SF6, NO, NOy, O3 and H2O. We illustrate the strength of this new data set by showing mean distributions of the mixing ratios of selected trace gases, using a potential temperature-equivalent latitude coordinate system. The observations reveal that the LMS is most stratospheric in character during spring, with the highest mixing ratios of O3 and NOy and the lowest mixing ratios of N2O and SF6. The lowest mixing ratios of NOy and O3 are observed during autumn, together with the highest mixing ratios of N2O and SF6 indicating a strong tropospheric influence. For H2O, however, the maximum concentrations in the LMS are found during summer, suggesting unique (temperature- and convection-controlled) conditions for this molecule during transport across the tropopause. The SPURT data set is presently the most accurate and complete data set for many trace species in the LMS, and its main value is the simultaneous measurement of a suite of trace gases having different lifetimes and physical-chemical histories. It is thus very well suited for studies of

  18. The Darwin Rise: A Cretaceous superswell?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNutt, M. K.; Winterer, E. L.; Sager, W. W.; Natland, J. H.; Ito, G.

    1990-07-01

    The Japanese Guyots, Wake Guyots, and Mid-Pacific Mountains are part of a broad area of Cretaceous volcanism in the western Pacific termed the “Darwin Rise.” Based on Seabeam bathymetric data we classify these drowned volcanic islands as: type “A,” those that advanced to the atoll stage before final submergence; type “B,” those that drowned at the barrier reef stage; and type “V,” those with little or no reef material on their volcanic summits. Widespread evidence for karst topography extending to depths of 200 m on the summits of A and B guyots sheds new light on events leading to the synchronous extinction of reefs on the Darwin Rise in the mid-Cretaceous. We propose that after the formation of the reefs on the A and B guyots, the entire region was elevated at approximately the Aptian-Albian boundary (113 Ma) to form a superswell similar to that existing now in French Polynesia. The type V guyots formed on this anomalously shallow lithosphere. The demise of the reefs was the direct result of the rise of this superswell, although climate factors may have prevented reef recolonization following its later subsidence.

  19. Cretaceous-Palaeogene experiments in Biogeochemical Resilience

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Penman, D. E.; Henehan, M. J.; Hull, P. M.; Planavsky, N.; Schmidt, D. N.; Rae, J. W. B.; Thomas, E.; Huber, B. T.

    2015-12-01

    Human activity is altering biogeochemical cycles in the ocean. While ultimately anthropogenic forcings may be brought under control, it is still unclear whether tipping points may exist beyond which human-induced changes to biogeochemical cycles become irreversible. We use the Late Cretaceous and the Cretaceous-Palaeogene (K-Pg) boundary interval as an informative case study. Over this interval, two carbon cycle perturbations (gradual flood basalt volcanism and abrupt bolide impact) occurred within a short time window, allowing us to investigate the resilience of biogeochemical cycles to different pressures applied to the same initial boundary conditions on very different time scales. We demonstrate that relatively gradual emission of CO2 from the Deccan large igneous province was efficiently mitigated within the limits of existing biogeochemical processes. However, the rapid extinction of pelagic calcifying organisms at the K-Pg boundary due to the Chicxulub bolide impact had more profound effects, and caused lasting (> 1 million years) changes to biogeochemical cycles. By combining sedimentological observations with boron isotope-based pH reconstructions over these events, we document two potentially useful partial analogues for best and worst case scenarios for anthropogenic global change. We suggest that if current ocean acidification results in the mass extinction of marine pelagic calcifiers, we may cause profound changes to the Earth system that will persist for 100,000s to millions of years.

  20. Low ecological disparity in Early Cretaceous birds.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Jonathan S; Makovicky, Peter J

    2014-07-22

    Ecological divergence is thought to be coupled with evolutionary radiations, yet the strength of this coupling is unclear. When birds diversified ecologically has received much less attention than their hotly debated crown divergence time. Here, we quantify how accurately skeletal morphology can predict ecology in living and extinct birds, and show that the earliest known assemblage of birds (=pygostylians) from the Jehol Biota (≈125 Ma) was substantially impoverished ecologically. The Jehol avifauna has few representatives of highly preservable ecomorphs (e.g. aquatic forms) and a notable lack of ecomorphological overlap with the pterosaur assemblage (e.g. no large or aerially foraging pygostylians). Comparisons of the Jehol functional diversity with modern and subfossil avian assemblages show that taphonomic bias alone cannot explain the ecomorphological impoverishment. However, evolutionary simulations suggest that the constrained ecological diversity of the Early Cretaceous pygostylians is consistent with what is expected from a relatively young radiation. Regardless of the proximate biological explanation, the anomalously low functional diversity of the Jehol birds is evidence both for ecological vacancies in Cretaceous ecosystems, which were subsequently filled by the radiation of crown Aves, and for discordance between taxonomic richness and ecological diversity in the best-known Mesozoic ecosystem. PMID:24870044

  1. Cretaceous Cogollo Group study - District Zulia Occidental

    SciTech Connect

    Lagazzi, R.; D`Antonio, G.; Hung, O.; Avila, A.

    1996-08-01

    The Cretaceous Cogollo Group, with over 1500 feet of platform carbonate and shale section, contains important oil accumulations in the west portion of the Maracaibo basin. However, after discovery of the major oil fields, all subsequent exploration and exploitation efforts led to disappointing results. This paper summarizes the study of the Cogollo Group in the Lake Maracaibo West Coast area, where light Cretaceous oil may have an impact on the total reserves. After integrating the Cogollo Group into the regional framework, the study focuses on the District Zulia Occidental, where over 40 deep wells either penetrated or tested the reservoir. Structural and stratigraphic descriptions are enriched by a significant amount of core and petrophysical data that leads to a better understanding of the reservoir layering and pore geometry. Well production performance and reservoir data are incorporated to the study as additional tools to determine the size of the oil accumulations. Finally, the study addresses the possibility of drilling slant or horizontal wells as a way to reduce the number of dry holes or marginal producers.

  2. Low ecological disparity in Early Cretaceous birds

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Jonathan S.; Makovicky, Peter J.

    2014-01-01

    Ecological divergence is thought to be coupled with evolutionary radiations, yet the strength of this coupling is unclear. When birds diversified ecologically has received much less attention than their hotly debated crown divergence time. Here, we quantify how accurately skeletal morphology can predict ecology in living and extinct birds, and show that the earliest known assemblage of birds (= pygostylians) from the Jehol Biota (≈ 125 Ma) was substantially impoverished ecologically. The Jehol avifauna has few representatives of highly preservable ecomorphs (e.g. aquatic forms) and a notable lack of ecomorphological overlap with the pterosaur assemblage (e.g. no large or aerially foraging pygostylians). Comparisons of the Jehol functional diversity with modern and subfossil avian assemblages show that taphonomic bias alone cannot explain the ecomorphological impoverishment. However, evolutionary simulations suggest that the constrained ecological diversity of the Early Cretaceous pygostylians is consistent with what is expected from a relatively young radiation. Regardless of the proximate biological explanation, the anomalously low functional diversity of the Jehol birds is evidence both for ecological vacancies in Cretaceous ecosystems, which were subsequently filled by the radiation of crown Aves, and for discordance between taxonomic richness and ecological diversity in the best-known Mesozoic ecosystem. PMID:24870044

  3. Evaluation of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations during the Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Sung Kyung; Lee, Yong Il

    2012-04-01

    Studying the role of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration (pCO2) regulating temperature during the Cretaceous is important to understand the evolution of the Cretaceous climate. However, the pCO2 variation during the Cretaceous remains uncertain. Here we present a new paleo-pCO2 variation record spanning the Barremian to Maastrichtian time. The new paleo-pCO2 calculations are based on analyses of pedogenic carbonate from the Gyeongsang Basin, Korea and data from the literature on pedogenic carbonates. Our results show that the mid-Cretaceous pCO2 levels were higher than those observed during the Early and the Late Cretaceous, and that the highest pCO2 was achieved between the Cenomanian and the Turonian. This pCO2 trend is in agreement with the paleotemperature records. Our results also show that three intervals of low pCO2 (< 400 ppmV) in the Early and the Late Cretaceous seem to be associated with climatic changes suggestive of glacial episodes. These results suggest that the Cretaceous climatic change was associated with pCO2 variations. Variations in the rate of outgassing caused by variations of oceanic crust production rate have been known as a major cause of the mid-Cretaceous warmth. However, our results show the discrepancy in the timing between the highest rate of oceanic crust production and the highest pCO2 levels during the mid-Cretaceous. We interpret that large subaerial volcanisms in the Caribbean and Madagascar Large Igneous Provinces were instrumental for providing additional CO2 to the atmosphere, resulting in the warmest mid-Cretaceous.

  4. Late Cretaceous restructuring of terrestrial communities facilitated the end-Cretaceous mass extinction in North America

    PubMed Central

    Roopnarine, Peter D.; Angielczyk, Kenneth D.

    2012-01-01

    The sudden environmental catastrophe in the wake of the end-Cretaceous asteroid impact had drastic effects that rippled through animal communities. To explore how these effects may have been exacerbated by prior ecological changes, we used a food-web model to simulate the effects of primary productivity disruptions, such as those predicted to result from an asteroid impact, on ten Campanian and seven Maastrichtian terrestrial localities in North America. Our analysis documents that a shift in trophic structure between Campanian and Maastrichtian communities in North America led Maastrichtian communities to experience more secondary extinction at lower levels of primary production shutdown and possess a lower collapse threshold than Campanian communities. Of particular note is the fact that changes in dinosaur richness had a negative impact on the robustness of Maastrichtian ecosystems against environmental perturbations. Therefore, earlier ecological restructuring may have exacerbated the impact and severity of the end-Cretaceous extinction, at least in North America. PMID:23112149

  5. Late Cretaceous restructuring of terrestrial communities facilitated the end-Cretaceous mass extinction in North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, Jonathan S.; Roopnarine, Peter D.; Angielczyk, Kenneth D.

    2012-11-01

    The sudden environmental catastrophe in the wake of the end-Cretaceous asteroid impact had drastic effects that rippled through animal communities. To explore how these effects may have been exacerbated by prior ecological changes, we used a food-web model to simulate the effects of primary productivity disruptions, such as those predicted to result from an asteroid impact, on ten Campanian and seven Maastrichtian terrestrial localities in North America. Our analysis documents that a shift in trophic structure between Campanian and Maastrichtian communities in North America led Maastrichtian communities to experience more secondary extinction at lower levels of primary production shutdown and possess a lower collapse threshold than Campanian communities. Of particular note is the fact that changes in dinosaur richness had a negative impact on the robustness of Maastrichtian ecosystems against environmental perturbations. Therefore, earlier ecological restructuring may have exacerbated the impact and severity of the end-Cretaceous extinction, at least in North America.

  6. Climate-mediated diversification of turtles in the Cretaceous

    PubMed Central

    Nicholson, David B.; Holroyd, Patricia A.; Benson, Roger B. J.; Barrett, Paul M.

    2015-01-01

    Chelonians are ectothermic, with an extensive fossil record preserved in diverse palaeoenvironmental settings: consequently, they represent excellent models for investigating organismal response to long-term environmental change. We present the first Mesozoic chelonian taxic richness curve, subsampled to remove geological/collection biases, and demonstrate that their palaeolatitudinal distributions were climate mediated. At the Jurassic/Cretaceous transition, marine taxa exhibit minimal diversity change, whereas non-marine diversity increases. A Late Cretaceous peak in ‘global' non-marine subsampled richness coincides with high palaeolatitude occurrences and the Cretaceous thermal maximum (CTM): however, this peak also records increased geographic sampling and is not recovered in continental-scale diversity patterns. Nevertheless, a model-detrended richness series (insensitive to geographic sampling) also recovers a Late Cretaceous peak, suggesting genuine geographic range expansion among non-marine turtles during the CTM. Increased Late Cretaceous diversity derives from intensive North American sampling, but subsampling indicates that Early Cretaceous European/Asian diversity may have exceeded that of Late Cretaceous North America. PMID:26234913

  7. Cretaceous-Tertiary findings, paradigms and problems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Officer, C. B.; Drake, C. L.

    1988-01-01

    The asteroid hypothesis has stimulated numerous studies of the paleontological record at Cretaceous/Tertiary time as well as of geological indicators of environmental crisis preserved in the rock record. Both extinctions and geological anomalies often occur at times that do not appear to be synchronous or instantaneous. The record includes paleontological indicators of dinosaurs, terrestrial flora, marine planktonic organisms, and shallow water marine macrofauna and geological phenomena include occurrences of iridium and other platinum metals, trace elements, clay mineralogy, shocked minerals, soot, microspherules, and isotopes of osmium, strontium and carbon. These findings are reviewed in the context of the alternate hypotheses of an exogenic cause, involving either a single asteroid impact or multiple commentary impacts, and an endogenic cause, involving intense global volcanism and major sea level regression.

  8. Latest Cretaceous sedimentation on Peninsular Ranges block

    SciTech Connect

    Abbott, P.L.

    1986-04-01

    The Peninsular Ranges block is dominated by a Late Jurassic-middle Cretaceous batholithic belt that extends from the Santa Ana Mountains in southern California southward through the state of Baja California. From paleomagnetic evidence, the block appears to have moved north about 11/sup 0/ with respect to the North American craton since the Late Cretaceous. The Campanian-Maestrichtian sedimentary record along the western side of the block shows that sedimentation occurred contemporaneously with faulting. Dominantly coarse sediments were stripped off the batholithic complex, carried westward relatively short distances, and deposited in alluvial-fan, fluvial, fan-delta, and shelf environments as well as in submarine fans built into local, fault-created basins. The Peninsular Ranges block apparently moved northward in response to oblique subduction of the Farallon plate; it seemingly rode along on a reasonably even keel as transcurrent faulting wrenched pieces off its western side. The steady keel allowed the sedimentary record to reflect eustatic changes. Along the west side of the Peninsular Ranges block, the Campanian column typically has a retrogradational sequence lower in the section that is overlain by a progradational sequence. This pattern holds for the Santa Ana Mountains, San Diego, California, and Descanso, Salsipuedes, and El Rosario, Baja California. Eustatic sea level changes left a dominant imprint on the entire stratigraphic column, although local facies may be distinctly different because basins were created by contemporaneous faulting. The fault basins may have had a borderland-style topography, judging from their relatively small size, discontinuous and sporadic development, and apparently linear margins.

  9. Geography of cretaceous extinctions: Data base development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raup, D. M.

    1991-01-01

    Data bases built from the source literature are plagued by problems of data quality. Unless the data acquisition is done by experts, working slowly, the data base may contain so much garbage that true signals and patterns cannot be detected. On the other hand, high quality data bases develop so slowly that satisfactory statistical analysis may never be possible due to the small sample sizes. Results of a test are presented of the opposite strategy: rapid data acquisition by non-experts with minimal control on data quality. A published list of 186 species and genera of fossil invertibrates of the latest Cretaceous Age (Maestrichtian) were located through a random search of the paleobiological and geological literature. The geographic location for each faunal list was then transformed electronically to Maestrichtian latitude and longitude and the lists were further digested to identify the genera occurring in each ten-degree, latitude-longitude block. The geographical lists were clustered using the Otsuka similarity coefficient and a standard unweight-pair-group method. The resulting clusters are remarkably consistent geographically, indicating that a strong biogeographic signal is visible despite low-quality data. A further test evaluated the geographic pattern of end-Cretaceaous extinctions. All genera in the data base were compared with Sepkoski's compendium of time ranges of genera to determine which of the reported genera survived the Cretaceous mass extinction. In turn, extinction rates for the ten-degree, latitude-longitude blocks were mapped. The resulting distribution is readily interpretable as a robust pattern of the geography of the mass extinction. The study demonstrates that a low-quality data base, built rapidly, can provide a basis for meaningful analysis of past biotic events.

  10. The Cretaceous Quiet Zone: How Quiet?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallet, Y.; Dyment, J.; Kitazawa, M.; Bouligand, C.; Hoise, E.; Kim, M.; Savary, J.; Royer, J.; Choi-Dyment, Y.; Gotab, B.

    2005-12-01

    Geomagnetic field intensity variations deduced from magnetostratigraphic data are mainly restricted to the past few million years. As a consequence, many important questions, such as the long-term evolution of the geomagnetic field intensity and the temporal distribution of excursions, remain unsolved yet. The possibility to recover these fluctuations over a long time interval from marine magnetic anomalies is therefore of particular interest. Within the period documented by these anomalies, the Cretaceous Normal Superchron (CNS) presents a major interest in geomagnetism as little is known on the characteristics of the geomagnetic field during this event, except that it apparently did not reverse for about 35 Myr. Cruise Magofond 3 of R/V Suroit (July-August 2005) was dedicated to the CNS, with a target area on the Cretaceous Quiet Zone off Western Africa, on the eastern flank of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Both sea-surface and deep tow magnetic anomaly profiles have been collected. Magnetic observatory data from M'Bour (Senegal) and Guimar (Canary Islands) have been regularly transmitted to the ship in order to check for any external magnetic field disturbance which may have affected the data. In addition, seismic reflection data were acquired to insure that the observed anomalies are not caused by the basement topography and, eventually, to estimate and correct such an effect. Altogether, these data brings new constraints on the variability of the geomagnetic field during the superchron. As a preliminary result, they show the occurrence of several consistent short-wavelength magnetic anomalies which may be linked either to short reversed polarity intervals or to excursions. In particular, the ISEA reversed polarity subchron at the beginning of the CNS seems to be present in most profiles. Other observed anomalies may also depict subchrons and would therefore challenge the concept of a non-reversing geodynamo during the exceptionally long CNS.

  11. Cretaceous Vertebrate Tracksites - Korean Cretaceous Dinosaur Coast World Heritage Nomination Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huh, M.; Woo, K. S.; Lim, J. D.; Paik, I. S.

    2009-04-01

    South Korea is one of the best known regions in the world for Cretaceous fossil footprints, which are also world-renowned. Korea has produced more scientifically named bird tracks (ichnotaxa) than any other region in the world. It has also produced the world's largest pterosaur tracks. Dinosaur tracksites also have the highest frequency of vertebrate track-bearing levels currently known in any stratigraphic sequence. Among the areas that have the best track records, and the greatest scientific significance with best documentation, Korea ranks very highly. Objective analysis of important individual tracksites and tracksite regions must be based on multiple criteria including: size of site, number of tracks, trackways and track bearing levels, number of valid named ichnotaxa including types, number of scientific publications, quality of preservation. The unique and distinctive dinosaur tracksites are known as one of the world's most important dinosaur track localities. In particular, the dinosaur track sites in southern coastal area of Korea are very unique. In the sites, we have excavated over 10,000 dinosaur tracks. The Hwasun sites show diverse gaits with unusual walking patterns and postures in some tracks. The pterosaur tracks are the most immense in the world. The longest pterosaur trackway yet known from any track sites suggests that pterosaurs were competent terrestrial locomotors. This ichnofauna contains the first pterosaur tracks reported from Asia. The Haenam Uhangri pterosaur assigns to a new genus Haenamichnus which accomodates the new ichnospecies, Haenamichnus uhangriensis. At least 12 track types have been reported from the Haman and Jindong Formations (probably late Lower Cretaceous). These include the types of bird tracks assigned to Koreanornis, Jindongornipes, Ignotornis and Goseongornipes. In addition the bird tracks Hwangsanipes, Uhangrichnus, the pterosaur track Haenamichnus and the dinosaur tracks, Brontopodus, Caririchnium, Minisauripus and

  12. Magnetostratigraphy of displaced Upper Cretaceous strata in southern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fry, J. Gilbert; Bottjer, David J.; Lund, Steve P.

    1985-09-01

    A magnetostratigraphic study of Upper Cretaceous marine strata from the Santa Ana Mountains in southern California has identified a Campanian reversed magnetozone. This reversed interval, corresponding to marine magnetic anomaly 33 34 (Chron 33r) of Campanian age, can be correlated with a Campanian reversed magnetozone that has been reported from strata of the Great Valley Sequence in central California. The Late Cretaceous paleolatitude of the Santa Ana Mountains is estimated from this study to be 26.6°N. This is significantly different from the region's expected Cretaceous paleolatitude of 43.8°N as part of the North American stable craton, and indicates that this region (part of the Peninsular Ranges terrane) was 1900 km farther south in Cretaceous time relative to the stable craton. *Present address: Mobil Oil Corp., P.O. Box 900, Dallas, Texas 75221

  13. Colombian late cretaceous tropical planktonic foraminifera: Redressing the imbalance

    SciTech Connect

    McCarthy, L.D.

    1993-02-01

    Recent work involving Late Cretaceous planktonic foraminifera has concentrated on European and other areas in the Northern Hemisphere. Many of the biostratigraphical and evolutionary models reflect this geographical restriction and ignore earlier studies from tropical areas. In 1955 Rolando Gandolfi described many new species and subspecies from Colombia and provided a different view of the evolutionary development of planktonic foraminifera. A re-examination of the Gandolfi type collection using Scanning Electron Micrography (Environmental Chamber technique) integrated with Colombian well samples from onshore Guajira area, Middle and Upper Magdalena Valley and Putumayo Basin has given a new view into the evolutionary development of Late Cretaceous planktonic foraminifera. This has enabled a modified globigerine Late Cretaceous biostratigraphy to be constructed for Colombia. This work redresses the imbalance between studies of tropical and northern high latitude Late Cretaceous planktonic foraminifera and provides an insight into the paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatological factors influencing the Colombian region at the time.

  14. Late Cretaceous base level lowering in Campanian and Maastrichtian depositional sequences, Kure Beach, North Carolina

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harris, W.B.; Self-Trail J.M.

    2006-01-01

    Campanian through Maastrichtian mixed carbonate and siliciclastic sediments in a 422 m continuous core drilled at Kure Beach, NC provide a record of sea-level change. Based on lithology and stratigraphy, depositional sequences are defined, and calcareous nannofossil zones and 87Sr/86Sr ratios and corresponding ages using the LOWESS Table determined. Campanian and Maastrichtian sediments comprise six depositional sequences. The oldest is Tar Heel 1 and contains calcareous nannofossils that indicate assignment to the upper part of Zones CC18a, CC18c and the lower part of CC19. 87Sr/86 Sr ratios indicate ages from 83.2 to 80.0 Ma or lower Campanian. Tar Heel II contains calcareous nannofossils that indicate assignment to the upper part of Zone CC 19 and CC20. 87Sr/86Sr ratios indicate ages from 78.0 to 76.3 Ma or middle Campanian. Donoho Creek I and II are thin and contain calcareous nannofossils referable to upper Zone CC21 and Zone CC22, and to CC23, respectively. The top of Donoho Creek II marks the Campanian-Maastrichtian boundary. Donoho Creek I 87Sr/86Sr ratios cluster into two groups, and provide ages from 78.0 to 76.2 Ma and 73.7 to 72.3 Ma, respectively. 87Sr/86Sr ratios in Donoho Creek II indicate ages from 71.4 to 69.6 Ma. Two Maastrichtian sequences are present; the lowermost Peedee I contains calcareous nannofossils that place it in Zones CC25a and CC25b. 87Sr/86Sr r ratios indicate an age from 69.3 to 66.9 Ma or late Maastrichtian. Peedee II is assigned to calcareous nannofossil Zone CC26a. 87Sr/86Sr ratios indicate ages from 66.4 to 65.2 Ma or late Maastrichtian. The four Campanian sequences correlate to three depositional sequences in New Jersey; the sequence boundary between upper Campanian Donoho Creek I and Donoho Creek II is not recognized in New Jersey. This boundary is interpreted to result from Gulf Stream impingement and subsequent erosion on the outer shelf. The two Maastrichtian sequences recognized in the Kure Beach core correlate to the two

  15. New chronostratigraphy of the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary interval at Bidart (France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galbrun, Bruno; Gardin, Silvia

    2004-07-01

    The Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary section at Bidart (French basque coast) was prevented for a long time to be considered as a reference section for the K-T boundary due to a suspected hiatus comprising most of Chron C29r. In our new magneto- and biostratigraphic study of this section we discovered that the underlying primary magnetic polarity is not revealed in the vector directions but in a small, but consistent, intensity excursion during laboratory demagnetization trends. Magnetite and maghemite are the main carriers of remanence, with contribution of hematite to the magnetic mineralogy of the red-brown lowermost Danian and Maastrichtian marly limestones. Magnetite is the main magnetic mineral in the white to pink Danian limestones. The NRM of marls and marly limestones is characterized by: (1) a present-day field overprint, (2) a medium-temperature (300-400 °C) reversed component interpreted as a relic of the characteristic remanent magnetization (ChRM) carried by magnetite grains which are not completely oxidized into maghemite, and (3) a high temperature (up to 590 °C) normal component due to late diagenesis hematite growth. The NRM of Danian limestones is characterized by (1) a present-day field overprint and (2) a ChRM component of normal or reversed polarity. The ChRM directions allow a new correlation of the magnetic polarity sequence with the Geomagnetic Polarity Time Scale (GPTS): Chron C29r corresponds to the Maastrichtian unit and extends up to 3.5 m above the K-T boundary, and Chron C29n occurs at the top of the section. There is no evidence for a hiatus at or below the K-T boundary, and the section does not extend up to Chron C28r as previously suggested. These new chronostratigraphic assignments are in good agreement with the previous biostratigraphic data and from the new biostratigraphic analyses based on calcareous nannofossils presented in this paper. Our study demonstrates that the section of Bidart can be considered as a key section to

  16. Stratigraphy and paleogeography of the Cretaceous in Arabian Peninsula

    SciTech Connect

    Alsharhan, A.S.; Nairn, A.E.M.

    1986-05-01

    The Cretaceous of the Arabian Peninsula is divided into three major units by regional unconformities: Lower Cretaceous Thamama Group (Berriasian-middle Aptian), middle Cretaceous Wasia Group (Albian-Turonian), and Upper Cretaceous Aruma Group (Coniacian-Maestrichtian). The profusion of named stratigraphic units in the area reflects not only the lithologic variation resulting from facies changes, but also terminologies adopted by different companies. The authors provide a stratigraphic nomenclature defining standard type sections and indicate synonymies, which follow the recommendation of 10th Geological Liaison Meeting and hence are acceptable to operators in the area. The sedimentologic history of the area was presented in a series of paleogeographic maps, which they relate to the regional tectonic framework. The maps show a predominantly carbonate shelf ramp bordering a land area to the north and west. The principal change in depositional environment occurs during the Upper Cretaceous, as a result of tectonic activity. Less significant changes are attributed to eustatic sea level fluctuations, on which tilting caused by tectonic movement may be superposed during the Lower and middle Cretaceous. The major producing horizons lie below the regional unconformities; secondary porosity in the shelf reefal buildups was developed during subaerial exposure in the Shuaiba Formation (early-middle Aptian), in the Mishrif Formation (late Cenomanian), and in the Simsima Formation (Maestrichtian).

  17. A Late Cretaceous ceratopsian dinosaur from Europe with Asian affinities.

    PubMed

    Osi, Attila; Butler, Richard J; Weishampel, David B

    2010-05-27

    Ceratopsians (horned dinosaurs) represent a highly diverse and abundant radiation of non-avian dinosaurs known primarily from the Cretaceous period (65-145 million years ago). This radiation has been considered to be geographically limited to Asia and western North America, with only controversial remains reported from other continents. Here we describe new ceratopsian cranial material from the Late Cretaceous of Iharkút, Hungary, from a coronosaurian ceratopsian, Ajkaceratops kozmai. Ajkaceratops is most similar to 'bagaceratopsids' such as Bagaceratops and Magnirostris, previously known only from Late Cretaceous east Asia. The new material unambiguously demonstrates that ceratopsians occupied Late Cretaceous Europe and, when considered with the recent discovery of possible leptoceratopsid teeth from Sweden, indicates that the clade may have reached Europe on at least two independent occasions. European Late Cretaceous dinosaur faunas have been characterized as consisting of a mix of endemic 'relictual' taxa and 'Gondwanan' taxa, with typical Asian and North American groups largely absent. Ajkaceratops demonstrates that this prevailing biogeographical hypothesis is overly simplified and requires reassessment. Iharkút was part of the western Tethyan archipelago, a tectonically complex series of island chains between Africa and Europe, and the occurrence of a coronosaurian ceratopsian in this locality may represent an early Late Cretaceous 'island-hopping' dispersal across the Tethys Ocean. PMID:20505726

  18. Late Cretaceous Volcaniclastics in NW Turkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boehm, Katharina; Wolfgring, Erik; Omer Yilmaz, Ismail; Tüysüz, Okan; Wagreich, Michael

    2015-04-01

    On the southwestern coast of the Black Sea, in the western Pontides Upper Cretaceous tuff layers are present. The tuffs are intercalated with limestones, marls and turbidites and were investigated with focus on their geochemistry, to get new insights to the arrangement of terranes and ocean basins at this time. In the region two Upper Cretaceous volcanic units can be distinguished, separated by distinct red pelagic limestone successions, belonging to the Unaz Formation. The lower volcanic unit is named Dereköy Formation and is Turonian to Santonian in age. It is thought to be deposited within extension structures, contemporaneously with rifting in the western Black Sea basin. The upper volcanic unit is called Cambu Formation. According to biostratigraphic data it is deposited throughout Campanian, when spreading in the western Black Sea basin started. Interpreted as submarine deposits, element mobility has to be taken into account when interpreting geochemical ICP-MS data of the volcaniclastics. Multiple discrimination diagrams with suitable proxies elucidate the type of volcanism and contribute to reconstruction of the tectonic setting. The classified rock types range from basaltic to rhyodacitic in both volcanic formations. Basically degree of differentiation and alkalinity are the parameters looked at, when determining rock types of the volcanic eruption. Further volcanic series are specified as calc-alkaline to shoshonitic. Moreover, a volcanic arc setting seems to be the most likely case, following several discrimination diagrams, as well as normalized multi-element plots. This tectonic setting can be discussed in connection with paleo-tectonic reconstructions. Most cited in literature nowadays are models favoring a northward subduction of the northern branch of Neotethys, creating an extensional setting north of the Pontides. This kind of back arc extension is interpreted as the reason of a southward drift of the Istanbul continental fragment from Eurasia

  19. Timing and duration of biotic extinction and recovery at the Cretaceous/Paleogene boundary in Texas and Alabama

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leighton, Andrew; Hart, Malcolm; Hampton, Matt; Leng, Melanie; Smart, Christopher

    2014-05-01

    The Cretaceous/Paleogene boundary successions in Texas and Alabama provide a sedimentary record of events relatively close to the Chicxulub impact site. Recent work in both areas has shown that there was a single 'impact' event that is coincident with extinctions of planktic foraminifera and calcareous nannofossil, although the dinoflagellate cyst community was little affected. The benthic foraminifera in the Texas successions are, remarkably, little affected with many taxa being found in both the Corsicana Mudstone Formation (uppermost Maastrichtian) and the Kincaid Mudstone Formation (lowermost Paleocene). In the sediments just above the erosive surface that marks the 'impact' event (and the K/Pg boundary) there are large benthic foraminifera, including nodosariids <1.5 mm in length and lenticulinids <1.5 mm in diameter. This assemblage is rather unusual, and we have been unable to determine any modern, or fossil, equivalent. As Lenticulina rotulata Lamarck occurs throughout the succession, this taxon has been used for stable isotope analysis (δ18O and δ13C) of a range of different size fractions. The results show both a variation in oxygen and carbon isotope values with size as well as a distinct cyclicity which, almost certainly, reflects astronomical tuning. It is possible, therefore, to use this cyclicity to determine the possible duration of zones P0 and Pα (80-100 kyrs), and the timing of biotic recovery following the 'impact' event. The size of the stable isotope excursions (close to the base of zone P1a) is indicative of the Dan-C2 and the Lower 29n hyperthermal events, allowing direct correlation with the two other locations where these have been described: most notably in the Gubbio succession where there is also a good record of the magnetostratigraphy and biostratigraphy.

  20. Diagenetic Patterns of the Cretaceous Baseline Sandstone, Southern Nevada: Implications for Controls on Iron-Oxide Cementation and Coloration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duncan, C. J.; Chan, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    The Cretaceous Baseline Sandstone of the Sevier foreland basin deposits in southern Nevada exhibits intense diagenetic iron-oxide coloration and bleaching, and contains abundant cemented masses. The Baseline Formation is ~1 km thick with three alluvial to fluvial members: the basal White (Kbw) Member, overlain by coeval Red (Kbr) and Overton Conglomerate (Kbo) Members. Iron-oxide diagenetic features occur in two broad classes: 1) bedding parallel coloration facies of diffuse to banded red, pink, purple, white, to yellow colors; and 2) concretionary facies of heavily cemented horizons, pods/lenses, spherical to spheroidal concretions, boxworks, pipes, and irregular concretion forms. A distinctive geometry is the occurrence of large (~1 m diameter) spherical "beach ball" concretions within the Kbr. Preliminary mapping of diagenetic features shows that concretionary facies are more common within a ~125 m interval near the bottom of Kbw, and within the lower ~125 m of Kbr. Intense coloration changes are present throughout Kbw but occur only in the lowermost ~150 m of Kbr. In the Kbw, concretionary forms commonly occur in stratigraphic intervals of fine-grained sandstone, siltstone, and mudstone lithologies, whereas cemented masses are much less common in stratigraphic intervals composed of medium-grained sandstone and conglomerate lithologies. Additionally, both Kbw and Kbr Members exhibit rare examples of wood fragments in the center of iron-oxide concretions, suggesting the importance of organics as nucleation sites for precipitation. The distribution of complex and overprinted diagenetic patterns indicates nested scales of processes involving iron-oxide dissolution, mobilization, and precipitation. Overall stratigraphic architecture influenced formation-scale patterns, but specific lithologies and textures influenced the type and distribution of diagenetic facies at outcrop scales, and organic content encouraged cementation at grain-scales.

  1. Understanding Intrabasinal Organic Carbon Records: A New Carbon Isotope Record for the Early Cretaceous Abu Dhabi, UAE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Suwaidi, A. H.

    2014-12-01

    The Aptian-Albian (~125-100 Ma, Early Cretaceous) is considered to be an interval of elevated greenhouse gases, intensified hydrologic cycle, limited polar ice, and elevated high latitude temperatures, with evidence for Oceanic Anoxic Events (OAE) as recorded by organic matter and carbonate δ13C perturbations in both the marine and continental realm (Jenkyns et al., 2004; Poulsen, 2004; Robinson & Hesselbo, 2004 and Ufnar et al., 2004). In this study four cores from Aptian­-Albian marine sediments from a single offshore basin in Abu Dhabi, UAE were examined petrographically and samples were collected to generate a high resolution organic carbon δ13C chemostratigraphic profile. The cores represent sediments from the Early Cretaceous upper most Thamama and lowermost Wasia Group and represent interbedded shale and limestone units from the Arabian Shelf. Three of the cores, cores A­-C, show a 3‰ negative excursion in δ13Corg with values of -28‰ occurring with a concurrent increase in organic carbon, likely indicative of Aptian OAE 1a. These cores also show a transition from more oxic to euxinic waters as recorded in the pyrite framboid mean diameter. The remaining core, D, shows relatively isotopically light average δ13Corg values of -26‰, with an intervening positive isotope excursion and values of -23‰, and may represent a different event either earlier or later in the sequence, but due to limited biostratigraphic data could not easily be correlated using C-Isotopes alone with the other three cores. The four cores come from different localities within a single basin and highlight issues pertaining to correlating cores across a single basin for the same time interval, as well as variability in organic matter burial and oxygenation within a single basin, and may provide a useful case study specifically related to separating regional signals from global carbon isotope signals for the Aptian-Albian, and understanding how ancient Mesozoic basins are affected

  2. Composition and depositional environment of concretionary strata of early Cenomanian (early Late Cretaceous) age, Johnson County, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Merewether, E.A.; Gautier, Donald L.

    2000-01-01

    Unusual, concretion-bearing mudrocks of early Late Cretaceous age, which were deposited in an early Cenomanian epeiric sea, have been recognized at outcrops in eastern Wyoming and in adjoining areas of Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Colorado. In Johnson County, Wyo., on the western flank of the Powder River Basin, these strata are in the lower part of the Belle Fourche Member of the Frontier Formation. At a core hole in south-central Johnson County, they are informally named Unit 2. These strata are about 34 m (110 ft) thick and consist mainly of medium- to dark-gray, noncalcareous, silty shale and clayey or sandy siltstone; and light-gray to grayish-red bentonite. The shale and siltstone are either bioturbated or interlaminated; the laminae are discontinuous, parallel, and even or wavy. Several ichnogenera of deposit feeders are common in the unit but filter feeders are sparse. The unit also contains marine and continental palynomorphs and, near the top, a few arenaceous foraminifers. No invertebrate macrofossils have been found in these rocks. Unit 2 conformably overlies lower Cenomanian shale in the lowermost Belle Fourche Member, informally named Unit 3, and is conformably overlain by lower and middle Cenomanian shale, siltstone, and sandstone within the member, which are informally named Unit 1. The mineral and chemical composition of the three Cenomanian units is comparable and similar to that of shale and siltstone in the Upper Cretaceous Pierre Shale, except that these units contain more SiO2 and less CaO, carbonate carbon, and manganese. Silica is generally more abundant and CaO is generally less abundant in river water than in seawater. The composition of Unit 2 contrasts significantly with that of the underlying and overlying units. Unit 2 contains no pyrite and dolomite and much less sulfur than Units 1 and 3. Sulfate is generally less abundant in river water than in seawater. Unit 2 also includes sideritic and calcitic concretions, whereas Units

  3. Palaeoclimatic changes during the Upper Cretaceous of eastern Denmark: a study based on the Stevns-2 chalk core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boussaha, M.; Stemmerik, L.; Thibault, N.

    2013-12-01

    The Stevns-2 core located in eastern Denmark penetrated close to 350 m of upper Campanian-Maastrichtian sediments of the upper Chalk Group (Stemmerik et al., 2006). The calcareous nannofossil biozonation spans the time interval from the UC16aBP from the upper Campanian to the NNT1 in the lowermost Danian. Carbon and Oxygen isotopes trends records climatic events occurring in the upper Cretaceous: (1) the Late Campanian warm climatic optimum, (2) the early Maastrichtian cooling event, (3) the mid-Maastrichtian warming event, and (4) the late Maastrichtian cooling event, also observed in the nearby Stevns-1 core (Thibault et al., 2011) . These climatic variations match closely those observed in the nearby Stevns-1 core and in the Atlantic, Pacific and Tethyan realms (Thibault & GARDIN, 2006; Thibault et al., 2011). Changes occurring in the number of observed Inoceramids prisms per meter of core section, in the abundance of calcareous nannofossils and in the visible trace fossils abundances seem to be linked to climatic changes as expressed in the δ18O of the bulk sediment. In addition to the sedimentological data show that the distribution of facies through time from: (1) cyclic marl alternating with mudstone-wackestone chalk and conglomerates, to (2) bioturbated white mudstone and wackestone chalk, then to (3) flint alternating with mudstone and wackestone chalk, ending with (5) bryozoans wackestone and packstone, and the sedimentation rate changes varying from 1.4 cm/kyr to 13.4 cm/kyr. Here we show how changes in the sedimentology of the chalk and abundances of different fossil group are influenced by global and regional mechanisms. Isotopic results mainly reflect global paleoclimatic changes, whereas the sedimentological record is mostly influenced by (1) local variations in paleoproductivity, (2) deep-water paleocurrents influencing the chalk deposition and the shape of the sea-floor, (3) and (4) the geodynamic activity and paleotopography of the Late

  4. Proxy data constraints on Cretaceous sea surface temperature evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Brien, Charlotte L.; Robinson, Stuart A.; O'Connor, Lauren K.; Pancost, Richard D.

    2015-04-01

    It is well established that greenhouse conditions prevailed during the Cretaceous. However, constraining the exact nature of the greenhouse gas forcing, climatic warming and climate sensitivity remains an ongoing topic of research. Proxy temperature data provide valuable observational constraints on Cretaceous climate. In particular, much of our understanding of Cretaceous climate warmth comes from marine temperature proxy data reconstructions derived using planktic foraminiferal oxygen isotope (δ18O) palaeothermometry and, more recently, the TEX86 proxy, based on the distribution of marine isoprenoidal glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraether lipids (GDGTs). Both of these proxies provide estimates of sea surface temperature (SST), however each technique is subject to a number of proxy-specific caveats. For example, δ18O values in planktic foraminifer may be compromised by preservation and/or diagenetic alteration, while the TEX86 proxy has undergone several temperature calibration re-evaluations and the exact mechanism that relates GDGT production to SST is not fully understood. Here we synthesise and reinterpret available TEX86- and δ18O-SST proxy data for the entire Cretaceous. For the TEX86 data, where possible we re-evaluate the fractional abundance of all individual GDGTs. By utilising fractional GDGT abundances we are also able to compute methane indices and branched and isoprenoid tetraether (BIT) indices, as well as apply both the TEX86H and TEX86L temperature calibrations. For each of the two SST proxy techniques, TEX86 and δ18O, we apply consistent temperature calibrations and place all data on a common timescale. Our new data-based SST synthesis allows us to examine long term temperature trends in the Cretaceous, including latitudinal temperature gradient variations, and evaluate global versus regional temperature patterns. Through considering both TEX86 and planktic foraminiferal δ18O data we critically compare the application of these two techniques

  5. Microspectroscopic Evidence of Cretaceous Bone Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Lindgren, Johan; Uvdal, Per; Engdahl, Anders; Lee, Andrew H.; Alwmark, Carl; Bergquist, Karl-Erik; Nilsson, Einar; Ekström, Peter; Rasmussen, Magnus; Douglas, Desirée A.; Polcyn, Michael J.; Jacobs, Louis L.

    2011-01-01

    Low concentrations of the structural protein collagen have recently been reported in dinosaur fossils based primarily on mass spectrometric analyses of whole bone extracts. However, direct spectroscopic characterization of isolated fibrous bone tissues, a crucial test of hypotheses of biomolecular preservation over deep time, has not been performed. Here, we demonstrate that endogenous proteinaceous molecules are retained in a humerus from a Late Cretaceous mosasaur (an extinct giant marine lizard). In situ immunofluorescence of demineralized bone extracts shows reactivity to antibodies raised against type I collagen, and amino acid analyses of soluble proteins extracted from the bone exhibit a composition indicative of structural proteins or their breakdown products. These data are corroborated by synchrotron radiation-based infrared microspectroscopic studies demonstrating that amino acid containing matter is located in bone matrix fibrils that express imprints of the characteristic 67 nm D-periodicity typical of collagen. Moreover, the fibrils differ significantly in spectral signature from those of potential modern bacterial contaminants, such as biofilms and collagen-like proteins. Thus, the preservation of primary soft tissues and biomolecules is not limited to large-sized bones buried in fluvial sandstone environments, but also occurs in relatively small-sized skeletal elements deposited in marine sediments. PMID:21559386

  6. Testing Iberia Kinematics at Jurassic-Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neres, Marta; Miranda, J. Miguel; Font, Eric

    2013-04-01

    Paleogeographic reconstructions of Iberia at Mesozoic are still a matter of debate. A major problem resides in the incompatibility existing between kinematic models and paleomagnetic data older than 120 Ma. Here, we investigate the origin of this misfit by finding and testing euler poles that fit Iberian mean paleomagnetic poles (123, 130 and 151 Ma) with global APWP. At 123 Ma 130 Ma, no geologically plausible solutions were found, questioning the validity of corresponding paleomagnetic data. Contrarily, for 151 Ma mean pole, coherent solutions were simulated, suggesting respective paleomagnetic data as potentially reliable. Based on these results, we propose a new magnetic reconstruction for Iberia and surrounding plates at ~150 Ma, to which corresponds the IB-NAM euler pole -18.08 / 67.54 / -57.72 (long / lat / angle). This is the first pre-drift reconstruction for Iberia to be compatible with paleomagnetic data. A complete and coherent model for the Jurassic-Cretaceous kinematic evolution of Iberia is still dependent on more and better paleomagnetic poles and on a reevaluation of magnetic anomalies, for which several problems remain unsolved.

  7. Late Cretaceous sea level from a paleoshoreline

    SciTech Connect

    McDonough, K.J.; Cross, T.A. )

    1991-04-10

    The contemporary elevation of a Late Cenomanian ({approx}93 Ma) shoreline was determined at five localities along the tectonically stable, eastern margin of the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway, North America. This shoreline, represented by marine-to-nonmarine facies transitions in strata of the Greenhorn sequence (UZA-2 cycle of Haq et al. (1987)), was identified from outcrop and borehole data. Biostratigraphic zonations constrained the geologic age at each locality. Sequence stratigraphic correlations, based on identifying discrete progradational units and the surfaces that separate them, were used to refine age correlations to better than 100 kyr between localities. A single Cenomanian shoreline was correlated within a single progradational unit, and its elevation was determined at five localities. This paleostrandline occurs 265-286m above present-day sea level, at an average elevation of 276 m. Isostatic and flexural corrections were applied to remove the effects of postdepositional vertical movement, including sediment compaction by loading, uplift due to erosion, and glacial loading and rebound. Errors inherent in each measurement and each correction were estimated. Corrections and their cumulative error estimates yield a Late Cenomanian elevation of 269{plus minus}87 m above present sea level. The corrected elevation approximates sea level at 93 Ma and provides a measure of Late Cenomanian eustasy prior to the Early Turonian highstand. Establishing the absolute value for eustasy at a single point in geologic time provides a frame of reference for calibrating relative sea level curves, as well as constraining the magnitudes of tectonic subsidence, sediment flux, and other variables that controlled water depth and relative sea level.

  8. Rates of morphological evolution are heterogeneous in Early Cretaceous birds.

    PubMed

    Wang, Min; Lloyd, Graeme T

    2016-04-13

    The Early Cretaceous is a critical interval in the early history of birds. Exceptional fossils indicate that important evolutionary novelties such as a pygostyle and a keeled sternum had already arisen in Early Cretaceous taxa, bridging much of the morphological gap betweenArchaeopteryxand crown birds. However, detailed features of basal bird evolution remain obscure because of both the small sample of fossil taxa previously considered and a lack of quantitative studies assessing rates of morphological evolution. Here we apply a recently available phylogenetic method and associated sensitivity tests to a large data matrix of morphological characters to quantify rates of morphological evolution in Early Cretaceous birds. Our results reveal that although rates were highly heterogeneous between different Early Cretaceous avian lineages, consistent patterns of significantly high or low rates were harder to pinpoint. Nevertheless, evidence for accelerated evolutionary rates is strongest at the point when Ornithuromorpha (the clade comprises all extant birds and descendants from their most recent common ancestors) split from Enantiornithes (a diverse clade that went extinct at the end-Cretaceous), consistent with the hypothesis that this key split opened up new niches and ultimately led to greater diversity for these two dominant clades of Mesozoic birds. PMID:27053742

  9. Potential cretaceous play in the Rharb basin of northern Morocco

    SciTech Connect

    Jobidon, G.P. )

    1993-09-01

    The autochthonous Cretaceous in the Rharb basin of northern Morocco is located underneath a cover of neogene sediments and of the Prerif nappe olistostrome, which was emplaced during the Tortonian 7 m.y. The presence of infranappe Cretaceous sediments is documented in a few onshore wells in the Rharb basin and in the adjacent Prerif Rides area, as well as in the Rif Mountains. Their presence in the deeper portion of the Rharb basin is difficult to detail because of poor seismic resolution data beneath dispersive prerif nappe. A recent study of offshore seismic data acquired by PCIAC in 1987 indicates that the infranappe interval can be more than 1500 m thick in some of the offshore Kenitra area. These sediments have seismic signatures that would correspond to Middle Cretaceous transgressions, culminating with a Turonian highstand. Their deposition systems were located on the northern and western flanks of the Meseta and were followed by a hiatus lasting until the Miocene. Regional studies of gravity and magnetic data provide and additional understanding of the Rif province, its evolution, and the possible presence of autochthonous Cretaceous sediments below the prerif nappe cover. The infranappe of Rharb basin has a good potential to develop into a major hydrocarbon play with the presence of middle Cretaceous reservoir rocks, Turonian-Cenomanian black shale source rocks, as well as the timely combination of trap formation, source rock maturation, and hydrocarbon migration.

  10. Mammal disparity decreases during the Cretaceous angiosperm radiation.

    PubMed

    Grossnickle, David M; Polly, P David

    2013-11-22

    Fossil discoveries over the past 30 years have radically transformed traditional views of Mesozoic mammal evolution. In addition, recent research provides a more detailed account of the Cretaceous diversification of flowering plants. Here, we examine patterns of morphological disparity and functional morphology associated with diet in early mammals. Two analyses were performed: (i) an examination of diversity based on functional dental type rather than higher-level taxonomy, and (ii) a morphometric analysis of jaws, which made use of modern analogues, to assess changes in mammalian morphological and dietary disparity. Results demonstrate a decline in diversity of molar types during the mid-Cretaceous as abundances of triconodonts, symmetrodonts, docodonts and eupantotherians diminished. Multituberculates experience a turnover in functional molar types during the mid-Cretaceous and a shift towards plant-dominated diets during the late Late Cretaceous. Although therians undergo a taxonomic expansion coinciding with the angiosperm radiation, they display small body sizes and a low level of morphological disparity, suggesting an evolutionary shift favouring small insectivores. It is concluded that during the mid-Cretaceous, the period of rapid angiosperm radiation, mammals experienced both a decrease in morphological disparity and a functional shift in dietary morphology that were probably related to changing ecosystems. PMID:24089340

  11. Progresses on Cretaceous Chronostratigraphy and status of GSSPs' definition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Premoli Silva, Isabella

    2013-04-01

    A wealth of data on various aspects of Cretaceous stratigraphy had continued to be published up to now providing a continuous amelioration of the multiple stratigraphic framework that today spans most of the Cretaceous frequently in high resolution. If so, why out of the 12 stages of the Cretaceous System only three stages have a ratified GSSP plus a forth one now waiting for ratification by the IUGS Executive Committee? The extensive recovery of continuous pelagic successions by the DSDP-ODP projects in all oceans posed several problems of correlation with the classical sections, stratotypes included, frequently of limited exposures and affected by numerous discontinuities. In addition, the biostratigraphy of these classical sections is based on macrofossils, frequently of limited geographical distribution, that are absent in deep-sea sediments, primarily dated by calcareous plankton. To overcome such a bias, biostratigraphies have been integrated with magneto- and isotope stratigraphies. However, the "Long Magnetic Normal" prevents the calibration of the bioevents in most Upper Cretaceous, and not all the lithologies are suitable for magnetic investigations. The d13C-based major isotope events proved to be a reliable stratigraphic tool in some intervals, allowing to correlate sections from different basins and settings and to detect even minor hiatuses. The interdisciplinary approach, imperative for defining the Cretaceous chronostratigraphy, resulted in slow progresses in term of GSSP definitions. Few case studies will be presented.

  12. Mammal disparity decreases during the Cretaceous angiosperm radiation

    PubMed Central

    Grossnickle, David M.; Polly, P. David

    2013-01-01

    Fossil discoveries over the past 30 years have radically transformed traditional views of Mesozoic mammal evolution. In addition, recent research provides a more detailed account of the Cretaceous diversification of flowering plants. Here, we examine patterns of morphological disparity and functional morphology associated with diet in early mammals. Two analyses were performed: (i) an examination of diversity based on functional dental type rather than higher-level taxonomy, and (ii) a morphometric analysis of jaws, which made use of modern analogues, to assess changes in mammalian morphological and dietary disparity. Results demonstrate a decline in diversity of molar types during the mid-Cretaceous as abundances of triconodonts, symmetrodonts, docodonts and eupantotherians diminished. Multituberculates experience a turnover in functional molar types during the mid-Cretaceous and a shift towards plant-dominated diets during the late Late Cretaceous. Although therians undergo a taxonomic expansion coinciding with the angiosperm radiation, they display small body sizes and a low level of morphological disparity, suggesting an evolutionary shift favouring small insectivores. It is concluded that during the mid-Cretaceous, the period of rapid angiosperm radiation, mammals experienced both a decrease in morphological disparity and a functional shift in dietary morphology that were probably related to changing ecosystems. PMID:24089340

  13. Ages and geochemistry of Cretaceous mafic dikes in Southeastern China: implications for paleo-Pacific subduction evolution during Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Jian-wei; Lee, Chi-Yu; Chen, Cheng-Hong

    2016-04-01

    The spatial and temporal distribution of two Cretaceous mafic dike populations in SE China provides an opportunity to study the mantle evolution related to the paleo-Pacific subduction. They include early Cretaceous (143-131 Ma) mafic dikes in the interior SE China (Jiangxi and north Guangdong), and late Cretaceous (98-79 Ma) mafic dikes in the coastal area of Fujian and Hong Kong. All these rocks exhibit some arc-like geochemical signatures, such as large ion lithophile element (LILE; Rb, Ba) enrichment and high field strength element (HFSE; Nb, Ta, Ti) depletion. However, the former have higher concentrations in TiO2, Nb, Ta and lower La/Nb ratio. Sr and Nd isotope data indicate that they may involve two end-members, one with lithosphere-modified OIB-like asthenosphere composition and the other with subduction-modified lithosphere composition. These results suggest that asthenospheric mantle probably play a role for the formation of early Cretaceous mafic dikes. Conversely, the latter exhibits typical mantle compositions of an arc system. Abundances of Jurassic basalts in the interior SE China with typical asthenosphere signatures suggest that they might be the products in response to the delamination of partially over-thickened lithosphere under a rifting environment. Appearance of early Cretaceous mafic dikes, tinged with OIB-like in addition to the arc-like signatures in the interior SE China, may be an indication that paleo-Pacific subduction started or resumed at the beginning of the early Cretaceous. On the other hand, the coastal SE China was characterized by the formation of a NE-trending A-type granite and rhyolite belt near the end of the late Cretaceous, a sign for the epilog of the paleo-Pacific movement. Therefore, widespread of the late Cretaceous mafic dikes would be a reflection of a well-modified mantle by the paleo-Pacific before the cessation of the subduction system in the coastal SE China. (Keywords: Cretaceous, Mafic dike, SE China)

  14. A first record of Cretaceous aphids (Hemiptera, Sternorrhyncha, Aphidomorpha) in Australia, from the Lower Cretaceous Koonwarra Fossil Bed, Victoria.

    PubMed

    Martin, Sarah K; Skidmore, Luke I; Stilwell, Jeffrey D

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the first species of aphid from the Lower Cretaceous Koonwarra Fossil Bed of the Gippsland Basin, southeastern Victoria, Australia. This aphid, herein named Koonwarraphis rotundafrons gen. & sp. nov., is assigned to the cosmopolitan Cretaceous superfamily Tajmyraphidoidea, which has been previously described from the Lebanese, Taimyrian, Canadian, Myanmar (Burmese), and Spanish ambers. Koonwarraphis rotundafrons is the first aphid recorded from the eastern Gondwanan landmass during the Cretaceous, and represents the only tajmyraphidoid preserved as a compression fossil, rather than as an amber inclusion. Due to the nature of the fossil's preservation, Koonwarraphis cannot be firmly placed in any of the described tajmyraphidoid families; however, all observable morphological features suggest that the genus is broadly typical of the superfamily and Cretaceous aphids in general. Koonwarraphis' shortened rostrum, a feature also seen in other tajmyraphidoids, suggests an association with the more herbaceous aspects of the Early Cretaceous Victorian flora. Considering the modern aphid preference for angiosperm plants, it is possible that this aphid was living upon the herbaceous early angiosperms recorded previously from the Koonwarra macrofloral assemblage. PMID:27395744

  15. Molecular fossils in Cretaceous condensate from western India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Sharmila; Dutta, Suryendu; Dutta, Ratul

    2014-06-01

    The present study reports the biomarker distribution of condensate belonging to the early Cretaceous time frame using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The early Cretaceous palaeoenvironment was inscribed into these molecular fossils which reflected the source and conditions of deposition of the condensate. The saturate fraction of the condensate is characterized by normal alkanes ranging from n-C9 to n-C29 (CPI-1.13), cycloalkanes and C14 and C15 sesquiterpanes. The aromatic fraction comprises of naphthalene, phenanthrene, their methylated derivatives and cyclohexylbenzenes. Isohexylalkylnaphthalenes, a product of rearrangement process of terpenoids, is detected in the condensate. Several aromatic sesquiterpenoids and diterpenoids have been recorded. Dihydro- ar-curcumene, cadalene and ionene form the assemblage of sesquiterpenoids which are indicative of higher plant input. Aromatic diterpenoid fraction comprises of simonellite and retene. These compounds are also indicative of higher plants, particularly conifer source which had been a predominant flora during the Cretaceous time.

  16. The earliest known tyrannosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buffetaut, Eric; Suteethorn, Varavudh; Tong, Haiyan

    1996-06-01

    THE Tyrannosauridae were the dominant large carnivorous dinosaurs in Asia (excluding India) and western North America during the Late Cretaceous period1-3. Most of them are from the Campanian and Maastrichtian ages, and very little is known about their earlier history, although scanty remains have been reported from the early part of the Upper Cretaceous4-7. We describe a newly discovered incomplete skeleton of a large theropod from the Early Cretaceous Sao Khua Formation of northeastern Thailand as an early and primitive representative of the Tyrannosauridae. This new taxon, which is at least 20 million years older than the earliest previously known tyranno-saurids, suggests that the early evolution of tyrannosaurids may have taken place in Asia.

  17. More stable yet bimodal geodynamo during the Cretaceous superchron?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lhuillier, Florian; Gilder, Stuart A.; Wack, Michael; He, Kuang; Petersen, Nikolai; Singer, Brad S.; Jicha, Brian R.; Schaen, Allen J.; Colon, Dylan

    2016-06-01

    We report palaeomagnetic and 40Ar/39Ar dating results from two sequences of basaltic lava flows deposited at the same locality in western China, yet separated in time by ~50 Myr: one set lies within the Cretaceous normal superchron at 112-115 Ma and a second at 59-70 Ma spanning the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary. We find that magnetic field directions during the superchron exhibit bimodal populations: one with inclinations representative of a dipolar field and another with shallow inclinations that could reflect a more complex, multipolar field. However, the time-dependent variability in field directions was 50% lower during the superchron than after, which implies greater field stability during the superchron. Our results suggest that episodes of less dipolar field behavior occurred within the Cretaceous superchron and raise the question whether a second, more multipolar, field state is more persistent than previously thought.

  18. Some American Cretaceous fish scales, with notes on the classification and distribution of Cretaceous fishes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cockerell, T.D.A.

    1919-01-01

    Fish remains are extremely abundant in several Cretaceous formations of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains, but except in the Niobrara formation of Kansas, a fish skeleton well enough preserved for description or identification is the greatest rarity. The fishes are represented by separate scales, in some places associated with a few vertebrae and other fragmentary bones or by isolated teeth. In the original descriptions of both the Mowry and the Aspen shales of Wyoming the presence of fish scales is mentioned as a characteristic feature. Fossils of other classes are usually very rare in beds containing many fish scales. Many of the scales are beautifully preserved and show varied forms and more or less complex structure.

  19. The Cretaceous stratigraphy of the Western Cordillera Oriental, Columbia

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, R.B.; Alfonso, C.A.; Ressetar, R.; Salazar, A. ); Ballesteros, I.; Cardozo, E.; Laverde, F.; Ramirez, C. ); Moreno, J.M. ); Rubiano, J.; Sarmiento, L. )

    1993-02-01

    During 1987 and 1988, a major field project sponsored by Tenneco was undertaken along the west flank of the Cordillera Oriental of Colombia between Alpujarra (between the Neiva and Girardot Sub-Basins) and the Middle Magdalena Basin (Cimitarra area). An important result of this study was the documentation of pronounced regional variation in the age, thickness, and facies of the Cretaceous section. The maximum thickness estimated was 7 km for the Bogota-Villeta section, with ages as old as Berriasian. This section can be divided into 4 or 5 depositional sequences. A clastic source to the west or southwest is indicated for the lower sequence 1 (and 2 ), an eastern source dominated sequences 3 and 4, and eastern and western sources supplied the upper sequence. Toward the north the section thins to an estimated 3-5 km but still ranges in age throughout the Cretaceous. Southward, on the other hand, the Cretaceous thins to about 2 km and is restricted to Aptian-Albian and younger ages. The variations in ages, facies, and thickness are consistent with recent models of the evolution of the Cretaceous basin. During the Neocomian, the Bogata area formed the main depocenter of the basin and was characterized by restricted facies and turbidites, suggesting steep, possibly faulted basin margins. Facies to the north, near the Middle Magdalena Basin, indicate shallower water, possibly a platform. By the end of the Early Cretaceous, expansion of the marine basin out of the central Cordillera Oriental and regionally more constant facies indicate the onset of dominantly thermal subsidence. The end of the Cretaceous was marked by regression and asymmetric clastic input from east and west of the basin.

  20. Ocular shell structures in some Cretaceous trachyleberid Ostracoda

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kontrovitz, M.; Puckett, T.M.

    1998-01-01

    This is the first study of internal ocular shell structures of Cretaceous ostracodes. Internal molds from eight species of four genera from Santonian, Campanian, and Maastrichtian strata revealed a stalked ocular sinus constricted along its length and distally inflated. The latter part has anterior and posterior lobes and a subcentral concavity. These Cretaceous trachyleberids have ocular shell structures similar to Cenozoic taxa and it is presumed they functioned similarly. However, each taxon has a diagnostic ocular sinus and an inner surface of the eye tubercle that distinguishes each from all other forms examined.

  1. Arctic Late Cretaceous and Paleocene Plant Community Succession

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Alexei; Spicer, Robert; Daly, Robert; Jolley, David; Ahlberg, Anders; Moiseeva, Maria

    2010-05-01

    The Arctic abounds with Late Cretaceous and Paleocene plant fossils attesting to a thriving, diverse, but now extinct polar ecosystem that sequestered vast amounts of carbon. Through detailed examination of plant remains and their distributions in time and space with respect to their entombing sedimentary facies, it has been possible to reconstruct changes in Arctic vegetation composition and dynamics through the Late Cretaceous and into the Paleocene. Based on over 10,000 leaf remains, fossil wood and palynomorph assemblages from northeastern Russia and northern Alaska and palynological data from elsewhere in the Arctic we identify a number of successional plant communities (SPCs) representing seral development from early (pioneer), through middle to late SPCs and climax vegetation. We recognise that (1) Equisetites and some ferns (typically Birisia, but after the beginning of the Maastrichtian, Onoclea) were obligatory components of the early SPCs; (2) first rare angiosperms (e.g. the dicot Vitiphyllum multifidum) appeared in the middle SPCs of the Arctic in the Early - Middle Albian; (3) from late Albian times onwards angiosperms became abundant in the middle SPCs of the Arctic, but were still rare in the earlier and later SPCs; (4) monocots appeared in the Maastrichtian early SPCs; (5) all Arctic Cretaceous late SPCs (and climax vegetation) were dominated by conifers; (6) Arctic SPCs were more numerous and diverse under warm climates than cold; (7) during the Albian and late Cretaceous, advanced (Cenophytic, angiosperm-dominated) plant communities coexisted with those of a more relictual (Mesophytic, dominated by ferns and gymnosperms) aspect, and plants composing these communities did not mix; (8) coal-forming environments (mires) remained conifer, fern and bryophyte dominated throughout the late Cretaceous and Paleocene with little penetration of woody angiosperm components and thus are conservative and predominantly Mesophytic in character; (9) bryophytes

  2. Middle cretaceous carbonate reservoirs, Fahud Field and northwestern Oman: discussion

    SciTech Connect

    Brennan, P.

    1985-05-01

    A discussion is presented of the Cretaceous formations involved in Fahud field. Along the Trucial Coast, as in northwestern Oman, it is not difficult to date the time of formation of the foredeep. This article provides a stratigraphic correlation chart for the Cretaceous along the Arabian side of the Arabian Gulf. The terminology presented on this correlation chart reflects oil-industry usage in the area, including correlations published by Owen and Nasr, Loutfi and Jaber, Arabian American Oil Company, Beydoun and Dunnington, and Hassan et al.

  3. Marine carbon cycling following end Cretaceous extinction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ridgwell, Andy; Thomas, Ellen; Alegret, Laia; Schmidt, Daniela

    2010-05-01

    Knowing how the transport of particulate organic carbon and associated nutrients into the ocean interior is controlled, is a prerequisite to reliable predictions of future changes in marine carbon cycling as the circulation and carbonate chemistry of the oceans are perturbed. Multiple mechanisms for particulate organic carbon transport have been proposed, most commonly based on sediment trap observations. Yet these observations primarily provide evidence for correlations between fluxes rather than being able to pin-point any particular mechanism. Despite this, global models tend to adopt one or other mechanism (e.g., ballasting) without independent justification. The geological record may help, as the evolution of pelagic ecosystems through the Phanerozoic has seen the emergence of animals (faecal pellets) and silicification and calcification of planktic organisms (ballasting), with evolutionary innovation fundamentally altering the nature of the oceanic biological pump. Moreover, catastrophic and transitory events, in which pelagic ecosystems were temporary disrupted, altering and biological pumping mechanisms, produced a tell-tale marine geochemical signature than may help elucidate the working of the biological pump. Here we focus on the bolide impact at the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary as it induced an enigmatic ‘collapse' in surface-to-deep carbon isotope (d13C) gradients, previously interpreted as representing a complete cessation of biological productivity and/or carbon pumping. Contemporaneous with this was a pronounced extinction of planktic calcifiers, resulting in an order of magnitude reduction in carbonate burial in deep-sea sediments. On face value, no (or little) carbonate ballasting and only a minor possible importance for dust together with ceased organic carbon transport to depth, is consistent with the existence of a dominant (carbonate) mineral ballasting mechanism prior to the event. However, a collapsed surface-to-deep d13C gradient does

  4. Exploring the Stable Isotope Record of Lake Carpenter: A Lacustrine Sequence in the Aptian-Albian Cretaceous Cedar Mountain Formation, Utah, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montgomery, E.; Al-Suwaidi, A. H.; Suarez, M. B.; Kirkland, J. I.; Suarez, C. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Cedar Mountain Formation (CMF) represents the earliest deposition of terrestrial Cretaceous strata in the USA, recording significant changes in biota and climate. Understanding these transitions requires improved time constraints and high-resolution proxy records. Here we present new δ13C (organic carbon & carbonate) chemostratigraphic record of a lacustrine sequence in a locality named "Lake Carpenter", near Moab, Utah. Lake Carpenter (LC) comprises interbedded limestone and mudstone units of the Ruby Ranch Member of the CMF. Results of the chemostratigraphy are constrained by detrital zircons from the section allowing correlation of the chemostratigraphy to the carbon isotope segments C9 to C11 (Bralower et al., 1999) spanning the Late Aptian to Early Albian, and supported by previous litho- and chemostratigraphic work in the CMF. δ13Corg values show a pronounced negative stepped excursion, of -6‰ with values reaching -32.3 ‰ occurring in conjunction with an increase in TOC. This negative excursion is followed by a positive recovery, with values of ~-25‰ and relatively low TOC. δ13Ccarb records positive values, up to +8‰, in the lowermost part of the section (< ~7m) followed by a decrease to ~-7 ‰. δ18Ocarb over this interval records values between -2 and -4‰ followed by a decrease to ~-7‰. The lowermost portion of the LC section is indicative of relatively deep lacustrine environment in which organic carbon burial influenced the δ13C of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in the lake. This lower δ13C of DIC may be due to increased upwelling and/or turnover and recycling of organic carbon in the lake. Variability of δ13Ccarb and δ18Ocarb values may reflect changes in water supply to the lake, or climatic variability resulting in the lake drying out. δ13Corg values may be affected by local lake dynamics, including variations in organic carbon storage and changes in algal productivity, perhaps also indicative of changes in nutrient

  5. Palaeobotanical evidence for a warm Cretaceous Arctic Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Alexei B.; Spicer, Robert A.

    1996-03-01

    THE Cretaceous period was a time of global warmth1-4. Mid-Cretaceous equatorial temperatures were similar to today's5, but the equator-to-pole temperature gradient is the subject of some controversy5-7. Although it is unlikely that the poles were ice-free8-10, fossil evidence3-5,11,12 indicates that near-polar temperatures were much higher than they are today. Little is known, moreover, about oceanic poleward heat transport, and this makes it hard to model the Cretaceous climate or to evaluate the extent to which it provides an analogue for a 'greenhouse' world warmed by increased atmospheric CO2 alone. Here we use relationships between leaf physiognomy (such as shape and size) and modern climate to determine Cretaceous climate conditions in the Arctic region from fossil leaves. We find that the Arctic Ocean was relatively warm, remaining above 0 °C even during the winter months. This implies that there was significant poleward heat transport during all seasons.

  6. Late Cretaceous seasonal ocean variability from the Arctic.

    PubMed

    Davies, Andrew; Kemp, Alan E S; Pike, Jennifer

    2009-07-01

    The modern Arctic Ocean is regarded as a barometer of global change and amplifier of global warming and therefore records of past Arctic change are critical for palaeoclimate reconstruction. Little is known of the state of the Arctic Ocean in the greenhouse period of the Late Cretaceous epoch (65-99 million years ago), yet records from such times may yield important clues to Arctic Ocean behaviour in near-future warmer climates. Here we present a seasonally resolved Cretaceous sedimentary record from the Alpha ridge of the Arctic Ocean. This palaeo-sediment trap provides new insight into the workings of the Cretaceous marine biological carbon pump. Seasonal primary production was dominated by diatom algae but was not related to upwelling as was previously hypothesized. Rather, production occurred within a stratified water column, involving specially adapted species in blooms resembling those of the modern North Pacific subtropical gyre, or those indicated for the Mediterranean sapropels. With increased CO(2) levels and warming currently driving increased stratification in the global ocean, this style of production that is adapted to stratification may become more widespread. Our evidence for seasonal diatom production and flux testify to an ice-free summer, but thin accumulations of terrigenous sediment within the diatom ooze are consistent with the presence of intermittent sea ice in the winter, supporting a wide body of evidence for low temperatures in the Late Cretaceous Arctic Ocean, rather than recent suggestions of a 15 degrees C mean annual temperature at this time. PMID:19587768

  7. New thoughts about the Cretaceous climate and oceans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hay, William W.; Floegel, Sascha

    2012-12-01

    Several new discoveries suggest that the climate of the Cretaceous may have been more different from that of today than has been previously supposed. Detailed maps of climate-sensitive fossils and sediments compiled by Nicolai Chumakov and his colleagues in Russia indicate widespread aridity in the equatorial region during the Early Cretaceous. The very warm ocean temperatures postulated for the Mid-Cretaceous by some authors would likely have resulted in unacceptable heat stress for land plants at those latitudes, however, and may be flawed. Seasonal reversals of the atmospheric pressure systems in the Polar Regions are an oversimplification. However, the seasonal pressure differences between 30° and 60° latitude became quite pronounced, being more than 25 hPa in winter and less than 10 hPa in summer. This resulted in inconstant winds, affecting the development of the gyre-limiting frontal systems that control modern ocean circulation. The idea of Hasegawa et al. (2012) who suggest a drastic reduction in the size of the Hadley cells during the warm Cretaceous greenhouse is supported by several numerical climate simulations. Rapid contraction of the Hadley cell such that its sinking dry air occurs at 15° N latitude rather than 30° N is proposed to occur at a threshold of 1000 ppmv CO2 in the atmosphere. This change will probably be reached in the next century.

  8. Peculiar macrophagous adaptations in a new Cretaceous pliosaurid

    PubMed Central

    Arkhangelsky, Maxim S.; Stenshin, Ilya M.; Uspensky, Gleb N.; Zverkov, Nikolay G.

    2015-01-01

    During the Middle and Late Jurassic, pliosaurid plesiosaurs evolved gigantic body size and a series of craniodental adaptations that have been linked to the occupation of an apex predator niche. Cretaceous pliosaurids (i.e. Brachaucheninae) depart from this morphology, being slightly smaller and lacking the macrophagous adaptations seen in earlier forms. However, the fossil record of Early Cretaceous pliosaurids is poor, concealing the evolution and ecological diversity of the group. Here, we report a new pliosaurid from the Late Hauterivian (Early Cretaceous) of Russia. Phylogenetic analyses using reduced consensus methods recover it as the basalmost brachauchenine. This pliosaurid is smaller than other derived pliosaurids, has tooth alveoli clustered in pairs and possesses trihedral teeth with complex serrated carinae. Maximum-likelihood ancestral state reconstruction suggests early brachauchenines retained trihedral teeth from their ancestors, but modified this feature in a unique way, convergent with macrophagous archosaurs or sphenacodontoids. Our findings indicate that Early Cretaceous marine reptile teeth with serrated carinae cannot be unequivocally assigned to metriorhynchoid crocodylomorphs. Furthermore, they extend the known diversity of dental adaptations seen in Sauropterygia, the longest lived clade of marine tetrapods. PMID:27019740

  9. A longirostrine tyrannosauroid from the Early Cretaceous of China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Daqing; Norell, Mark A.; Gao, Ke-Qin; Smith, Nathan D.; Makovicky, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    The fossil record of tyrannosauroid theropods is marked by a substantial temporal and morphological gap between small-bodied, Barremian taxa, and extremely large-bodied taxa from the latest Cretaceous. Here we describe a new tyrannosauroid, Xiongguanlong baimoensis n. gen. et sp., from the Aptian–Albian Xinminpu Group of western China that represents a phylogenetic, morphological, and temporal link between these disjunct portions of tyrannosauroid evolutionary history. Xiongguanlong is recovered in our phylogenetic analysis as the sister taxon to Tyrannosauridae plus Appalachiosaurus, and marks the appearance of several tyrannosaurid hallmark features, including a sharp parietal sagittal crest, a boxy basicranium, a quadratojugal with a flaring dorsal process and a flexed caudal edge, premaxillary teeth bearing a median lingual ridge, and an expanded axial neural spine surmounted by distinct processes at its corners. Xiongguanlong is characterized by a narrow and elongate muzzle resembling that of Alioramus. The slender, unornamented nasals of Xiongguanlong are inconsistent with recent hypotheses of correlated progression in tyrannosauroid feeding mechanics, and suggest more complex patterns of character evolution in the integration of feeding adaptations in tyrannosaurids. Body mass estimates for the full-grown holotype specimen of Xiongguanlong fall between those of Late Cretaceous tyrannosaurids and Barremian tyrannosauroids, suggesting that the trend of increasing body size observed in North American Late Cretaceous Tyrannosauridae may extend through the Cretaceous history of Tyrannosauroidea though further phylogenetic work is required to corroborate this. PMID:19386654

  10. Cretaceous carbonate platforms - emerging concepts and open problems

    SciTech Connect

    Schlager, W.

    1988-02-01

    The Cretaceous is a time of both spectacular growth and abrupt demise of carbonate platforms. Tectono-eustatic rise of sea level coupled with sediment-starvation in the ocean basins produced exceptionally high platforms. Because platform slopes steepen with height whereas siliciclastic slopes do not, the flanks of these high-rising platforms were onlapped by more gently dipping siliciclastics when the platforms ceased to grow. Future studies will have to separate these termination unconformities from the geometrically similar lowstand unconformities. Simultaneously, a carbonate sea level curve should be constructed solely from the record of the platform tops and compared with the onlap curves of seismic stratigraphy. The abrupt demise of Cretaceous platforms is even more remarkable than their rapid growth. In the Valanginian, the Aptian, the late Albian, the late Cenomanian, and the Turonian, platforms were drowned or reduced in size. The mid-Cretaceous events affected platforms in all major oceans and point to a global crisis of carbonate platforms, probably caused by environmental change such as oceanic anoxic events. A worldwide study is required to date these events and search for their causes in the record of life, climate, ocean circulation, and ocean chemistry. A third field of future research is the record of paleoclimate in the tidal flats and lagoons of the platforms on the northern and southern margins of Tethys. Climate modeling has identified this zone as a particularly sensitive switch in the ocean-atmosphere system of the Cretaceous.

  11. Cosmic Genes in the Cretaceous-Tertiary transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallis, M. K.

    2003-07-01

    It is proposed that genes coding for Aib-polypeptides arose early on in the K/T transition, presumed from the Earth's accretion of interplanetary (comet) dust. Aib-fungi flourished because of the evolutionary advantage of novel antibiotics. The stress on Cretaceous biology led directly and indirectly to mass species extinctions, including many dinosaur species, in the epoch preceding the Chicxulub impact.

  12. A primitive therizinosauroid dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirkland, J.I.; Zanno, L.E.; Sampson, S.D.; Clark, J.M.; DeBlieux, D.D.

    2005-01-01

    Therizinosauroids are an enigmatic group of dinosaurs known mostly from the Cretaceous period of Asia, whose derived members are characterized by elongate necks, laterally expanded pelves, small, leaf-shaped teeth, edentulous rostra and mandibular symphyses that probably bore keratinized beaks. Although more than a dozen therizinosauroid taxa are known, their relationships within Dinosauria have remained controversial because of fragmentary remains and an unusual suite of characters. The recently discovered 'feathered' therizinosauroid Beipiaosaurus from the Early Cretaceous of China helped to clarify the theropod affinities of the group. However, Beipiaosaurus is also poorly represented. Here we describe a new, primitive therizinosauroid from an extensive paucispecific bonebed at the base of the Cedar Mountain Formation (Early Cretaceous) of east-central Utah. This new taxon represents the most complete and most basal therizinosauroid yet discovered. Phylogenetic analysis of coelurosaurian theropods incorporating this taxon places it at the base of the clade Therizinosauroiden, indicating that this species documents the earliest known stage in the poorly understood transition from carnivory to herbivory within Therizinosauroidea. The taxon provides the first documentation, to our knowledge, of therizinosauroids in North America during the Early Cretaceous.

  13. Architectural studies of Jurassic-Cretaceous fluvial units, Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Miall, A.D.; Bromley, M.H.; Cowan, E.J.; Turner-Peterson, C.E.

    1989-03-01

    A sixfold hierarchy of architectural elements and bounding surfaces evolved from outcrop studies of three fluvial units: Westwater Canyon member (WCM), Morrison Formation, Upper Jurassic; Torrivio sandstone member (TSM), Gallup Sandstone, Upper Cretaceous, northwestern New Mexico; and Kayenta Formation (KF), Lower Jurassic, southwestern Colorado. This hierarchy is discussed.

  14. Persistence of coral-rudist reefs into the Late Cretaceous

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, R.W. ); Fernandez-Mendiola, P.A. ); Gili, E. ); Simo, A. )

    1990-04-01

    During the Early Cretaceous, coral-algal communities occupied deeper water habitats in the reef ecosystem, and rudist communities generally populated the shallow-water, carbonate-sand substrates. During the middle Cretaceous, however, coral-algal communities became less common, and Late Cretaceous reef communities consisted of both rudist-dominated and rudist-coral communities. In the Pyrenean basins and other basins in the Mediterranean, coral associations co-existed with rudists forming complex buildups at the shelf-edge. In some parts of these buildups corals were nearly as abundant as rudists; in some complex buildups large coral colonies encrusted the rudists. Behind the shelf margin cylindrical, elevator rudists dominated the lenticular thickets that were interspersed with carbonate sands. Global changes in oceanic conditions, such as marine productivity and oxygen content, may have stressed the deeper coral-algal reef communities leaving rudists as the major shallow reef biota in Caribbean reefs. However, the co-occurrence of corals with rudists in these Pyrenean complex buildups suggests that corals were able to compete with rudists for resources. The corals in the complex buildups generally belong to genera different from those in the coral-algal communities. Perhaps this ecological stress in the mid-Cretaceous resulted in the evolution of new coral taxa.

  15. European cretaceous flints on the coast of North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Emery, K.O.; Kaye, C.A.; Loring, D.H.; Nota, D.J.G.

    1968-01-01

    Flint pebbles and nodules from the Upper Cretaceous chalks of Europe occur offshore and at many seaports along the Atlantic coast of North America, where they were brought as ship's ballast. Isolated pieces imported from Europe as gunflints also are present.

  16. Relative sea level changes during the Cretaceous in Israel

    SciTech Connect

    Flexer, A.; Rosenfeld, A.; Lipson-Benitah, S.; Honigstein, A.

    1986-11-01

    Detailed lithologic, microfaunal, and biometric investigations, using relative abundances, diversity indexes, and duration charts of ostracods and foraminifera, allowed the recognition of sea level changes during the Cretaceous of Israel. Three major transgressive-regressive sedimentation cycles occur on the northwest margins of the Arabian craton. These cycles are the Neocomian-Aptian, which is mostly terrigenous sediments; the Albian-Turonian, which is basin marls and platform carbonates; and the Senonian, which is uniform marly chalks. The cycles are separated by two major regional unconformities, the Aptian-Albian and Turonian-Coniacian boundaries. The sedimentary cycles are related to regional tectonic and volcanic events and eustatic changes. The paleodepth curve illustrates the gradual sea level rise, reaching its maximum during the Late Cretaceous, with conspicuous advances during the late Aptian, late Albian-Cenomanian, early Turonian, early Santonian, and early Campanian. Major lowstands occur at the Aptian-Albian, Cenomanian-Turonian, Turonian-Coniacian, and Campanian-Maastrichtian boundaries. This model for Israel agrees well with other regional and global sea level fluctuations. Four anoxic events (black shales) accompanying transgressions correspond to the Cretaceous oceanic record. They hypothesize the presence of mature oil shales in the present-day eastern Mediterranean basin close to allochthonous reef blocks detached from the Cretaceous platform. 11 figures.

  17. Tridymite pseudomorphs after wood in virginian lower cretaceous sediments.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, R S

    1967-11-17

    Fossil wood composed of tridymite is abundant in Patuxent (Lower Cretaceous) arkose on Hazel Run, Fredericksburg, Virginia. X-ray diffraction studies of the tridymite indicate that it has a disordered structure in which hexagonal close packing predominates. The specimens, which contain trace amounts of aluminum, iron, and other elements, are soft and fibrous, varying from white to shades of brown. PMID:17753597

  18. Peculiar macrophagous adaptations in a new Cretaceous pliosaurid.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Valentin; Arkhangelsky, Maxim S; Stenshin, Ilya M; Uspensky, Gleb N; Zverkov, Nikolay G; Benson, Roger B J

    2015-12-01

    During the Middle and Late Jurassic, pliosaurid plesiosaurs evolved gigantic body size and a series of craniodental adaptations that have been linked to the occupation of an apex predator niche. Cretaceous pliosaurids (i.e. Brachaucheninae) depart from this morphology, being slightly smaller and lacking the macrophagous adaptations seen in earlier forms. However, the fossil record of Early Cretaceous pliosaurids is poor, concealing the evolution and ecological diversity of the group. Here, we report a new pliosaurid from the Late Hauterivian (Early Cretaceous) of Russia. Phylogenetic analyses using reduced consensus methods recover it as the basalmost brachauchenine. This pliosaurid is smaller than other derived pliosaurids, has tooth alveoli clustered in pairs and possesses trihedral teeth with complex serrated carinae. Maximum-likelihood ancestral state reconstruction suggests early brachauchenines retained trihedral teeth from their ancestors, but modified this feature in a unique way, convergent with macrophagous archosaurs or sphenacodontoids. Our findings indicate that Early Cretaceous marine reptile teeth with serrated carinae cannot be unequivocally assigned to metriorhynchoid crocodylomorphs. Furthermore, they extend the known diversity of dental adaptations seen in Sauropterygia, the longest lived clade of marine tetrapods. PMID:27019740

  19. Oldest termite nest from the Upper Cretaceous of west Texas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rohr, David M.; Boucot, A. J.; Miller, John; Abbott, Maxine

    1986-01-01

    Wood borings and insect frass from the Upper Cretaceous of Texas are interpreted to be the oldest known termite nest, the oldest known termite fecal pellets, and one of the few examples of trace-fossil evidence of social behavior in insects. It illustrates a form of behavioral fixity insofar as coprolite form, feeding habits, and substrate are concerned. *Deceased

  20. Cretaceous to Eocene passive margin sedimentation in Northeastern Venezuela

    SciTech Connect

    Erikson, J.P. )

    1993-02-01

    Twenty two palinspastic paleogeographic maps are presented for the Cretaceous to Eocene strata of the Serrania del Interior of northeastern Venezuela. The mapped lithologies, environmental conditions, and evolving depositional systems record [approximately]90 m.y. of dominantly marine sedimentation on the only observable Mesozoic passive margin in the Western Hemisphere. The depositional systems of the passive margin are heterogeneous at lateral (i.e., along-margin) length scales greater than [approximately]40 km. The primary lateral heterogeneity is caused by a major Lower Cretaceous deltaic system that emanated southwest of the Serrania del Interior. All important intervals, such as the laterally variable Aptian-Albian El Cantil platform limestone and the hydrocarbon source rocks of the Upper Cretaceous Querecual and San Antonio formations, are related to probable causal mechanisms and environmental conditions. Stratigraphic events have been interpreted as of either local or regional extent; based on a combination of outcrop sedimentologic analyses and regional depositional systems interpretation. The 3-dimensional distribution of depositional systems and systems tracts reveals 4-6 regional sequence boundaries separated by 4-20 m.y. Subsidence analyses support the facies interpretation of a passive margin by showing continuous, thermally dominated subsidence during the Cretaceous to Eocene interval. Subsidence and accumulation rates increased and facies changed significantly in the Oligocene, indicating the end of passive margin sedimentation and the initiation of foredeep subsidence and accumulation associated with overthrusting the eastward-advancing Caribbean Plate.

  1. CRETACEOUS CLIMATE SENSITIVITY STUDY USING DINOSAUR & PLANT PALEOBIOGEOGRAPHY

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, A.; Main, D. J.; Noto, C. R.; Moore, T. L.; Scotese, C.

    2009-12-01

    The Early Cretaceous was characterized by cool poles and moderate global temperatures (~16° C). During the mid and late Cretaceous, long-term global warming (~20° - 22° C) was driven by increasing levels of CO2, rising sea level (lowering albedo) and the continuing breakup of Pangea. Paleoclimatic reconstructions for four time intervals during the Cretaceous: Middle Campanian (80 Ma), Cenomanian/Turonian (90 Ma), Early Albian (110 Ma) and Barremian-Hauterivian (130Ma) are presented here. These paleoclimate simulations were prepared using the Fast Ocean and Atmosphere Model (FOAM). The simulated results show the pattern of the pole-to-Equator temperature gradients, rainfall, surface run-off, the location of major rivers and deltas. In order to investigate the effect of potential dispersal routes on paleobiogeographic patterns, a time-slice series of maps from Early - Late Cretaceous were produced showing plots of dinosaur and plant fossil distributions. These Maps were created utilizing: 1) plant fossil localities from the GEON and Paleobiology (PBDB) databases; and 2) dinosaur fossil localities from an updated version of the Dinosauria (Weishampel, 2004) database. These results are compared to two different types of datasets, 1) Paleotemperature database for the Cretaceous and 2) locality data obtained from GEON, PBDB and Dinosauria database. Global latitudinal mean temperatures from both the model and the paelotemperature database were plotted on a series of latitudinal graphs along with the distributions of fossil plants and dinosaurs. It was found that most dinosaur localities through the Cretaceous tend to cluster within specific climate belts, or envelopes. Also, these Cretaceous maps show variance in biogeographic zonation of both plants and dinosaurs that is commensurate with reconstructed climate patterns and geography. These data are particularly useful for understanding the response of late Mesozoic ecosystems to geographic and climatic conditions that

  2. Paleomagnetic and magnetostratigraphic investigations of the whitehorse group/quartermaster (Dewey Lake) formation (upper permian-lowermost triassic) in the Palo Duro basin, northwest Texas, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collins, Dylan R.

    In northwest Texas, upper Permian to lowermost Triassic hematite-cemented detrital sedimentary rocks, which include a small number of regionally extensive ash beds, were deposited during the time interval of the greatest mass extinction event sequences in Earth history. The magnetic polarity stratigraphy, as well as key rock magnetic properties, of the upper Whitehorse Group (WH) and Quartermaster formations (QM) at selected sections in the Palo Duro Basin, have been determined using thermal, and chemical demagnetization approaches and anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility, acquisition of isothermal remanent magnetization (IRM) and backfield demagnetization, and thermal demagnetization of three component IRM methods. Demagnetization results show that the WH/QM contains a primary/near-primary characteristic remanent magnetization at each level sampled and thus the magnetic polarity stratigraphy for each section can be compared with existing polarity time scales across the Permian-Triassic boundary. Estimated site mean directions yield a paleomagnetic pole for the latest Permian for North America of 57.8°N, 130.6°E from 38 sampled sites.

  3. Fission-track analysis of apatite and zircon defines a burial depth of 4 to 7 km for lowermost Upper Devonian, Catskill Mountains, New York

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lakatos, Stephen; Miller, Donald S.

    1983-02-01

    Apatite and zircon grains separated from a sandstone layer of earliest Late Devonian age, Catskill Mountains, have been subjected to fission-track analysis. A 125-m.y. age, obtained on the apatite grains, requires a temperature for the sediment of less than 120 °C during the past 125 m.y. At some time prior to 125 m.y. ago, temperatures were above 120 °C long enough to cause complete fading of tracks. Analysis of zircon grains resulted in a fission-track age of 320 m.y. Zircon data indicate that the temperature of the sediment layer enclosing the grains did not exceed 175 to 200 °C over a 235-rn.y. period (time between sedimentation and 125 m.y. ago). If one assumes a typical geothermal gradient of 25 °C/km, a burial depth of between 4 and 7 km is indicated for the lowermost Upper Devonian, atskill Mountains. *Present address: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York 12181

  4. Significance of the giant Lower Cretaceous paleoweathering event

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiry, Médard; Ricordel-Prognon, Caroline; Schmitt, Jean-Michel

    2010-05-01

    Weathering profiles typically develop at the interface with the atmosphere, and thus, record the fluctuations in the paleoatmosphere's chemistry and climatic conditions. Consequently they are one of the main archives to upgrade our understanding on paleoclimate and the Earth's environmental history. In this presentation, we will focus on the linking between paleoatmosphere compositions, weathering rates, and their impact on the subsequent sedimentary records. Distribution of the Lower Cretaceous lateritic weathering facies. During the Early Cretaceous, sea level drops and wide exondations lead to development of deep "lateritic" weathering profiles. Thick kaolinitic weathering profiles occured on the Hercynian basements and diverse kaolinitic and ferruginous weathering products covered the Jurassic limestone platforms. This major lateritic event is not restricted to Europe but also well know in North-America (up to Canada), South-America (down to Argentina), and in Australia. Moreover, recent paleomagnetic and radiometric datations revealed that numerous kaolinitic and ferruginous formations, which classically were ascribed to Tertiary ages, date back to the Lower Cretaceous period (Thiry et al., 2006). Additionally, the Bonherz iron ore deposits in the paleokarsts of the Jurassic limestone plateform of the Paris Basin also have to be reconsidered as of Cretaceous age, probably as well as the Tertiary age of the Swiss and Bavarian Jura Bonherz. Paleoclimatic interpretation. During a long time, the interpretation of these paleoweathering features has been a major palaeoclimatic argument. The spreading out of deep kaolinitic weathering profiles (from the Scandinavian and Canadian shields to southern Argentina and Australia, which was still situated close to Antarctica at that time) has lead to considerations, that during this period a warm and wet climate prevailed globally, with very little latitudinal differentiation. These paleoclimatic interpretations stand in

  5. North American nonmarine climates and vegetation during the Late Cretaceous

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolfe, J.A.; Upchurch, G.R., Jr.

    1987-01-01

    Analyses of physiognomy of Late Cretaceous leaf assemblages and of structural adaptations of Late Cretaceous dicotyledonous woods indicate that megathermal vegetation was an open-canopy, broad-leaved evergreen woodland that existed under low to moderate amounts of rainfall evenly distributed through the year, with a moderate increase at about 40-45??N. Many dicotyledons were probably large, massive trees, but the tallest trees were evergreen conifers. Megathermal climate extended up to paleolatitude 45-50??N. Mesothermal vegetation was at least partially an open, broad-leaved evergreen woodland (perhaps a mosaic of woodland and forest), but the evapotranspirational stress was less than in megathermal climate. Some dicotyledons were large trees, but most were shrubs or small trees; evergreen conifers were the major tree element. Some mild seasonality is evidenced in mesothermal woods; precipitational levels probably varied markedly from year to year. Northward of approximately paleolatitude 65??N, evergreen vegetation was replaced by predominantly deciduous vegetation. This replacement is presumably related primarily to seasonality of light. The southern part of the deciduous vegetation probably existed under mesothermal climate. Comparisons to leaf and wood assemblages from other continents are generally consistent with the vegetational-climatic patterns suggested from North American data. Limited data from equatorial regions suggest low rainfall. Late Cretaceous climates, except probably those of the Cenomanian, had only moderate change through time. Temperatures generally appear to have warmed into the Santonian, cooled slightly into the Campanian and more markedly into the Maastrichtian, and then returned to Santonian values by the late Maastrichtian. The early Eocene was probably warmer than any period of the Late Cretaceous. Latitudinal temperature gradients were lower than at present. For the Campanian and Maastrichtian, a gradient of about 0.3??C/1

  6. Giant Upper Cretaceous oysters from the Gulf coast and Caribbean

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sohl, Norman F.; Kauffman, Erle G.

    1964-01-01

    Two unusually massive ostreid species, representing the largest and youngest Mesozoic members of their respective lineages, occur in Upper Cretaceous sediment of the gulf coast and Caribbean areas. Their characteristics and significance, as well as the morphologic terminology of ostreids in general, are discussed. Crassostrea cusseta Sohl and Kauffman n. sp. is the largest known ostreid from Mesozoic rocks of North America; it occurs sporadically in the Cusseta Sand and rarely in the Blufftown Formation of the Chattahoochee River region in Georgia and Alabama. It is especially notable in that it lacks a detectable posterior adductor muscle scar on large adult shells. C. cusseta is the terminal Cretaceous member of the C. soleniscus lineage in gulf coast sediments; the lineage continues, however, with little basic modification, throughout the Cenozoic, being represented in the Eocene by C. gigantissima (Finch) and probably, in modern times, by C. virginica (Gmelin). The C. soleniscus lineage is the first typically modern crassostreid group recognized in the Mesozoic. Arctostrea aguilerae (Böse) occurs in Late Campanian and Early Maestrichtian sediments of Alabama, Mississippi, Texas(?), Mexico, and Cuba. The mature shell of this species is larger and more massive than that of any other known arctostreid. Arctostrea is well represented throughout the Upper Jurassic and Cretaceous of Europe, but in North America, despite the great numbers and diversity of Cretaceous oysters, only A. aguilerae and the Albian form A. carinata are known. The presence of A. aquilerae in both the Caribbean and gulf coast faunas is exceptional, as the Late Cretaceous faunas of these provinces are generally distinct and originated in different faunal realms.

  7. Latest Jurassic-early Cretaceous regressive facies, northeast Africa craton

    SciTech Connect

    van Houten, F.B.

    1980-06-01

    Nonmarine to paralic detrital deposits accumulated in six large basins between Algeria and the Arabo-Nubian shield during major regression in latest Jurassic and Early Cretaceous time. The Ghadames Sirte (north-central Libya), and Northern (Egypt) basins lay along the cratonic margin of northeastern Africa. The Murzuk, Kufra, and Southern (Egypt) basins lay in the south within the craton. Data for reconstructing distribution, facies, and thickness of relevant sequences are adequate for the three northern basins only. High detrital influx near the end of Jurassic time and in mid-Cretaceous time produced regressive nubian facies composed largely of low-sinuosity stream and fahdelta deposits. In the west and southwest the Ghadames, Murzuk, and Kufra basins were filled with a few hundred meters of detritus after long-continued earlier Mesozoic aggradation. In northern Egypt the regressive sequence succeeded earlier Mesozoic marine sedimentation; in the Sirte and Southern basins correlative deposits accumulated on Precambrian and Variscan terranes after earlier Mesozoic uplift and erosion. Waning of detrital influx into southern Tunisia and adjacent Libya in the west and into Israel in the east initiated an Albian to early Cenomanian transgression of Tethys. By late Cenomanian time it had flooded the entire cratonic margin, and spread southward into the Murzuk and Southern basins, as well as onto the Arabo-Nubian shield. Latest Jurassic-earliest Cretaceous, mid-Cretaceous, and Late Cretaceous transgressions across northeastern Africa recorded in these sequences may reflect worldwide eustatic sea-level rises. In contrast, renewed large supply of detritus during each regression and a comparable subsidence history of intracratonic and marginal basins imply regional tectonic control. 6 figures.

  8. Late Cretaceous-Early Palaeogene tectonic development of SE Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morley, C. K.

    2012-10-01

    The Late Cretaceous-Early Palaeogene history of the continental core of SE Asia (Sundaland) marks the time prior to collision of India with Asia when SE Asia, from the Tethys in the west to the Palaeo-Pacific in the east, lay in the upper plate of subduction zones. In Myanmar and Sumatra, subduction was interrupted in the Aptian-Albian by a phase of arc accretion (Woyla and Mawgyi arcs) and in Java, eastern Borneo and Western Sulawesi by collision of continental fragments rifted from northern Australia. Subsequent resumption of subduction in the Myanmar-Thailand sector explains: 1) early creation of oceanic crust in the Andaman Sea in a supra-subduction zone setting ~ 95 Ma, 2) the belt of granite plutons of Late Cretaceous-Early Palaeogene age (starting ~ 88 Ma) in western Thailand and central Myanmar, and 3) amphibolite grade metamorphism between 70 and 80 Ma seen in gneissic outcrops in western and central Thailand, and 4) accretionary prism development in the Western Belt of Myanmar, until glancing collision with the NE corner of Greater India promoted ophiolite obduction, deformation and exhumation of marine sediments in the early Palaeogene. The Ranong strike-slip fault and other less well documented faults, were episodically active during the Late Cretaceous-Palaeogene time. N to NW directed subduction of the Palaeo-Pacific ocean below Southern China, Vietnam and Borneo created a major magmatic arc, associated with rift basins, metamorphic core complexes and strike-slip deformation which continued into the Late Cretaceous. The origin and timing of termination of subduction has recently been explained by collision of a large Luconia continental fragment either during the Late Cretaceous or Palaeogene. Evidence for such a collision is absent from the South China Sea well and seismic reflection record and here collision is discounted. Instead relocation of the subducting margin further west, possibly in response of back-arc extension (which created the Proto

  9. Significance of the giant Lower Cretaceous paleoweathering event

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiry, Médard; Ricordel-Prognon, Caroline; Schmitt, Jean-Michel

    2010-05-01

    Weathering profiles typically develop at the interface with the atmosphere, and thus, record the fluctuations in the paleoatmosphere's chemistry and climatic conditions. Consequently they are one of the main archives to upgrade our understanding on paleoclimate and the Earth's environmental history. In this presentation, we will focus on the linking between paleoatmosphere compositions, weathering rates, and their impact on the subsequent sedimentary records. Distribution of the Lower Cretaceous lateritic weathering facies. During the Early Cretaceous, sea level drops and wide exondations lead to development of deep "lateritic" weathering profiles. Thick kaolinitic weathering profiles occured on the Hercynian basements and diverse kaolinitic and ferruginous weathering products covered the Jurassic limestone platforms. This major lateritic event is not restricted to Europe but also well know in North-America (up to Canada), South-America (down to Argentina), and in Australia. Moreover, recent paleomagnetic and radiometric datations revealed that numerous kaolinitic and ferruginous formations, which classically were ascribed to Tertiary ages, date back to the Lower Cretaceous period (Thiry et al., 2006). Additionally, the Bonherz iron ore deposits in the paleokarsts of the Jurassic limestone plateform of the Paris Basin also have to be reconsidered as of Cretaceous age, probably as well as the Tertiary age of the Swiss and Bavarian Jura Bonherz. Paleoclimatic interpretation. During a long time, the interpretation of these paleoweathering features has been a major palaeoclimatic argument. The spreading out of deep kaolinitic weathering profiles (from the Scandinavian and Canadian shields to southern Argentina and Australia, which was still situated close to Antarctica at that time) has lead to considerations, that during this period a warm and wet climate prevailed globally, with very little latitudinal differentiation. These paleoclimatic interpretations stand in

  10. Lower Cretaceous Puez key-section in the Dolomites - towards the mid-Cretaceous super-greenhouse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lukeneder, A.; Halásová, E.; Rehákova, D.; Józsa, Š.; Soták, J.; Kroh, A.; Jovane, L.; Florindo, F.; Sprovieri, M.; Giorgioni, M.; Lukeneder, S.

    2012-04-01

    Investigations on different fossil groups in addition to isotopic, paleomagnetic and geochemical analysis are combined to extract the Early Cretaceous history of environmental changes, as displayed by the sea level and climate changes. Results on biostratigraphy are integrated with other dating methods as magnetostraigraphy, correlation and cyclostratigraphy. The main investigation topics of the submitted project within the above-described framework are the biostratigraphic (Lukeneder and Aspmair, 2006, 2012), palaeoecological (Lukeneder, 2008, 2012), palaeobiogeographic, lithostratigraphic (Lukeneder, 2010, 2011), cyclostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic development of the Early Cretaceous in the Puez area. The main sections occur in expanded outcrops located on the southern margin of the Puez Plateau, within the area of the Puez-Geisler Natural Park, in the northern part of the Dolomites (South Tyrol, North Italy). The cephalopod, microfossil and nannofossil faunas and floras from the marly limestones to marls here indicates Hauterivian to Albian/Cenomanian age. Oxygen isotope values from the Lower Cretaceous Puez Formation show a decreasing trend throughout the log, from -1.5‰ in the Hauterivian to -4.5‰ in the Albian/Cenomanian. The decreasing values mirror an increasing trend in palaeotemperatures from ~ 15-18°C in the Hauterivian up to ~25-30 °C in the Albian/Cenomanian. The trend probably indicates the positive shift in temperature induced by the well known Mid Cretaceous Ocean warming (e.g., Super-Greenhouse). The cooperative project (FWF project P20018-N10; 22 international scientists): An integrative high resolution project. Macro- and microfossils, isotopes, litho-, cyclo-, magneto-and biostratigraphy as tools for investigating the Lower Cretaceous within the Dolomites (Southern Alps, Northern Italy) -The Puez area as a new key region of the Tethyan Realm), is on the way since 2008 by the Natural History Museum in Vienna and the 'Naturmuseum S

  11. Processes controlling water vapor in the upper troposphere/lowermost stratosphere: An analysis of 8 years of monthly measurements by the IAGOS-CARIBIC observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahn, A.; Christner, E.; Velthoven, P. F. J.; Rauthe-Schöch, A.; Brenninkmeijer, C. A. M.

    2014-10-01

    An extensive set of in situ water vapor (H2O) data obtained by the IAGOS-CARIBIC passenger aircraft at 10-12 km altitude over 8 years (2005-2013) is analyzed. A multifaceted description of the vertical distribution of H2O from the upper troposphere (UT) via the extratropical tropopause mixing layer (exTL) into the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) is given. Compared to longer-lived trace gases, H2O is highly variable in the UT and exTL. It undergoes considerable seasonal variation, with maxima in summer and in phase from the UT up to ~4 km above the tropopause. The transport and dehydration pathways of air starting at the Earth's surface and ending at 10-12 km altitude are reconstructed based upon (i) potential temperature (θ), (ii) relative humidity with respect to ice (RHi), and (iii) back trajectories as a function of altitude relative to the tropopause. RHi of an air mass was found to be primarily determined by its temperature change during recent vertical movement, i.e., cooling during ascent/expansion and warming during descent/compression. The data show, with great clarity, that H2O and RHi at 10-12 km altitude are controlled by three dominant transport/dehydration pathways: (i) the Hadley circulation, i.e., convective uplift in the tropics and poleward directed subsidence drying from the tropical tropopause layer with observed RHi down to 2%; (ii) warm conveyor belts and midlatitude convection transporting moist air into the UT with observed RHi usually above 60%; and (iii) the Brewer-Dobson shallow and deep branches with observed RHi down to 1%.

  12. Methyl chloride as a tracer of tropical tropospheric air in the lowermost stratosphere inferred from IAGOS-CARIBIC passenger aircraft measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Umezawa, T.; Baker, A. K.; Brenninkmeijer, C. A. M.; Zahn, A.; Oram, D. E.; Velthoven, P. F. J.

    2015-12-01

    We present variations of methyl chloride (CH3Cl) and nitrous oxide (N2O) in the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) obtained from air samples collected by the In-service Aircraft for a Global Observing System-Civil Aircraft for the Regular Investigation of the atmosphere Based on an Instrument Container (IAGOS-CARIBIC) passenger aircraft observatory for the period 2008-2012. To correct for the temporal increase of atmospheric N2O, the CARIBIC N2O data are expressed as deviations from the long-term trend at the northern hemispheric baseline station Mauna Loa, Hawaii (ΔN2O). ΔN2O undergoes a pronounced seasonal variation in the LMS with a minimum in spring. The amplitude increases going deeper in the LMS (up to potential temperature of 40 K above the thermal tropopause), as a result of the seasonally varying subsidence of air from the stratospheric overworld. Seasonal variation of CH3Cl above the tropopause is similar in phase to that of ΔN2O. Significant correlations are found between CH3Cl and ΔN2O in the LMS from winter to early summer, both being affected by mixing between stratospheric air and upper tropospheric air. This correlation, however, disappears in late summer to autumn. The slope of the CH3Cl-ΔN2O correlation observed in the LMS allows us to determine the stratospheric lifetime of CH3Cl to be 35 ± 7 years. Finally, we examine the partitioning of stratospheric air and tropical/extratropical tropospheric air in the LMS based on a mass balance approach using ΔN2O and CH3Cl. This analysis clearly indicates efficient inflow of tropical tropospheric air into the LMS in summer and demonstrates the usefulness of CH3Cl as a tracer of tropical tropospheric air.

  13. In situ ∼2.0 Ma trees discovered as fossil rooted stumps, lowermost Bed I, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Habermann, Jörg M; Stanistreet, Ian G; Stollhofen, Harald; Albert, Rosa M; Bamford, Marion K; Pante, Michael C; Njau, Jackson K; Masao, Fidelis T

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of fossil rooted tree stumps in lowermost Lower Bed I from the western Olduvai Basin, Tanzania, age-bracketed by the Naabi Ignimbrite (2.038 ± 0.005 Ma) and Tuff IA (1.88 ± 0.05 Ma), provides the first direct, in situ, and to date oldest evidence of living trees at Olduvai Gorge. The tree relicts occur in an interval dominated by low-viscosity mass flow and braided fluvial sediments, deposited at the toe of a largely Ngorongoro Volcano-sourced volcaniclastic fan apron that comprised a widely spaced network of ephemeral braided streams draining northward into the Olduvai Basin. Preservation of the trees occurred through their engulfment by mass flows, post-mortem mold formation resulting from differential decay of woody tissues, and subsequent fluvially-related sediment infill, calcite precipitation, and cast formation. Rhizolith preservation was triggered by the interaction of root-induced organic and inorganic processes to form rhizocretionary calcareous root casts. Phytolith analyses were carried out to complete the paleoenvironmental reconstruction. They imply a pronounced seasonality and indicate a wooded landscape with grasses, shrubs, and sedges growing nearby, comparable to the low, open riverine woodland (unit 4c) along the Garusi River and tributaries in the Laetoli area. Among the tree stump cluster were found outsized lithic clasts and those consisting of quartzite were identified as Oldowan stone tool artifacts. In the context of hominin activity, the identification of wooded grassland in association with nearby freshwater drainages and Oldowan artifacts significantly extends our paleoenvironmental purview on the basal parts of Lower Bed I, and highlights the hitherto underrated role of the yet poorly explored western Olduvai Gorge area as a potential ecologically attractive setting and habitat for early hominins. PMID:26767961

  14. Measurements of NO, NOy, N2O, and O3 during SPURT: implications for transport and chemistry in the lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Peter, Th.; Hoor, P.; Fischer, H.; Staehelin, J.; Krebsbach, M.; Schiller, C.; Parchatka, U.; Weers, U.

    2005-09-01

    We present measurements of NO, NOy, O3, and N2O within the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) over Europe obtained during the SPURT project. The measurements cover each of the four seasons during two years between November 2001 and July 2003, and probe the entire altitude and latitude range of the LMS: from 5° N to 85° N equivalent latitude, and from 290 to 375 K potential temperature. The measurements represent a comprehensive data set of these tracers and reveal atmospheric transport processes that influence tracer distributions in the LMS. Mean mixing ratios of stratospheric tracers in equivalent latitude-potential temperature coordinates show a clear seasonal cycle related to the Brewer-Dobson circulation with highest values in spring and lowest values in autumn. Vertical profiles show strong gradients at the extratropical tropopause suggesting that vertical (cross-isentropic) mixing is reduced above the tropopause. Mixing along isentropes is also strongly reduced since pronounced meridional gradients are found on potential temperature surfaces in the LMS. Concurrent large gradients in PV in the vertical and in the meridional direction horizontally suggest the presence of a transport and mixing barrier. Well above the tropopause distinguished seasonal cycles were found in the correlation slopes ΔO3/ΔN2O and ΔNOy/ΔN2O. Smallest slopes found during spring indicate chemically aged stratospheric air originating from high altitudes and latitudes. The slopes are larger in summer and autumn suggesting that a substantial fraction of air takes a 'short-cut' from the tropical tropopause region into the extratropical LMS. The comparison of measured NO with critical NO values at which net ozone production changes from negative to positive implies a net ozone production up to 20 K above the local tropopause in winter, increasing during spring and summer to up to 50 K in autumn. Above this height NO values favor ozone destruction.

  15. Transport in the Subtropical Lowermost Stratosphere during the Cirrus Regional Study of Tropical Anvils and Cirrus Layers-Florida Area Cirrus Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pittman, Jasna V.; Weinstock, Elliot M.; Oglesby, Robert J.; Sayres, David S.; Smith, Jessica B.; Anderson, James G.; Cooper, Owen R.; Wofsy, Steven C.; Xueref, Irene; Gerbig, Cristoph; Daube, Bruce C.; Richard, Erik C.; Ridley, Brian A.; Weinheimer, Andrew J.; Lowenstein, Max; Hans-Jurg, Jost; Lopez, Jimena P.; Mahoney, Michael J.; Thompson, Thomas L.; Hargrove, William W.; Hoffman, Forrest M.

    2007-01-01

    We use in situ measurements of water vapor (H2O), ozone (O3), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), nitric oxide (NO), and total reactive nitrogen (NOy) obtained during the CRYSTAL-FACE campaign in July 2002 to study summertime transport in the subtropical lowermost stratosphere. We use an objective methodology to distinguish the latitudinal origin of the sampled air masses despite the influence of convection, and we calculate backward trajectories to elucidate their recent geographical history. The methodology consists of exploring the statistical behavior of the data by performing multivariate clustering and agglomerative hierarchical clustering calculations and projecting cluster groups onto principal component space to identify air masses of like composition and hence presumed origin. The statistically derived cluster groups are then examined in physical space using tracer-tracer correlation plots. Interpretation of the principal component analysis suggests that the variability in the data is accounted for primarily by the mean age of air in the stratosphere, followed by the age of the convective influence, and last by the extent of convective influence, potentially related to the latitude of convective injection (Dessler and Sherwood, 2004). We find that high-latitude stratospheric air is the dominant source region during the beginning of the campaign while tropical air is the dominant source region during the rest of the campaign. Influence of convection from both local and nonlocal events is frequently observed. The identification of air mass origin is confirmed with backward trajectories, and the behavior of the trajectories is associated with the North American monsoon circulation.

  16. Cretaceous Cu-Au, pyrite, and Fe-oxide-apatite deposits in the Ningwu basin, Lower Yangtze Area, Eastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Jin-Jie; Lu, Bang-Cheng; Wang, Tie-Zhu; Che, Lin-Rui

    2015-05-01

    The Cretaceous Ningwu volcanic basin of the Middle and Lower Yangtze River Valley metallogenic belt of eastern China hosts numerous Fe-oxide-apatite, Cu-Au, and pyrite deposits. The mineralization in the Ningwu basin is associated with subvolcanic rocks, consisting of gabbro-diorite porphyry and/or pyroxene diorite. However, the mineralization is associated with subvolcanic and volcanic rock suite belonging to the Niangniangshan Formation in the Tongjing Cu-Au deposit, including nosean-bearing aegirine-augite syenites, quartz syenites, and quartz monzonites. The zoning displayed by the alteration and mineralization comprises: (1) an upper light-colored zone of argillic, carbonate, and pyrite alteration and silicification that is locally associated with pyrite and gold mineralization, (2) a central dark-colored zone of diopside, fluorapatite-magnetite, phlogopite, and garnet alteration associated with fluorapatite-magnetite mineralization, and (3) a lowermost light-colored zone of extensive albite alteration. The Cu-Au and pyrite orebodies are peripheral to the Fe-oxide-apatite deposits in this area and overlie the iron orebodies, including the Meishan Cu-Au deposit in the northern Ningwu basin and the pyrite deposits in the central Ningwu basin. The δ34S values of sulfides from the Fe-oxide-apatite, Cu-Au, and pyrite deposits in the Ningwu basin show large variation, with a mixed sulfur source, including magmatic sulfur and/or a mixture of sulfur derived from a magmatic component, country rock, and thermochemical reduction of sulfate at 200-300 °C. The ore-forming fluids associated with iron mineralization were derived mainly from magmatic fluids, and the late-stage ore-forming fluids related to Cu-Au and pyrite mineralization may have formed by the introduction of cooler meteoric water to the system. The Fe-oxide-apatite, Cu-Au, and pyrite deposits of the Ningwu basin formed in an extensional environment and are associated with a large-scale magmatic

  17. Anatomy of the Cretaceous Hobenzan pluton, SW Japan: Internal structure of a small zoned pluton, and its genesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Imaoka, Teruyoshi; Nakashima, Kazuo; Kamei, Atsushi; Hayasaka, Yasutaka; Ogita, Yasuo; Ikawa, Toshiyuki; Itaya, Tetsumaru; Takahashi, Yoshio; Kagami, Hiroo

    2014-11-01

    Field, petrographic, geochemical, and K-Ar and U-Pb age data were used to elucidate the internal structure of the Cretaceous Hobenzan pluton, SW Japan, and the processes which generated that structure. The pluton is elongated E-W with dimensions of about 6.5 × 2.0 km (13 km2), and was emplaced at ~ 95 Ma as a pluton in accretionary complexes. The pluton contains an early tonalite, but most of the body consists of later granitoids that show a continuous differentiation series from biotite-hornblende granodiorite (GD) to hornblende-biotite granite (HBG) and biotite granite (BG). The contacts between the GD and HBG are gradational. The pluton provides an exceptional cross-sectional view of a simple cooling magma body. The GD shows no vertical variations in modal and chemical compositions, whereas the HBG displays differentiation from the lowermost exposure to the top of the pluton. Initial Sr isotope ratios (SrI) in the HBG increase from the lower part to the top of the pluton. The granitoids show continuous compositional variations from 65 to 79 wt.% SiO2 (anhydrous basis), and magmatic differentiation was dominantly controlled by crystal fractionation of hornblende and plagioclase. Field, elemental and Sr-Nd isotope data are consistent with limited operation of assimilation with pelitic rocks and fractional crystallization (AFC), in which assimilation increased with higher degrees of differentiation. The Hobenzan pluton retains a history of granitoid magma evolution in a subvolcanic magma reservoir. The GD formed as a rigid sponge, and melt fraction increases inwards from the walls, forming the HBG mush by fractional crystallization, coupled with small degrees of assimilation of adjacent schists. A more evolved and enriched low-density melt segregated from the mushy cumulate of the HBG by incomplete crystal-melt separation, and moved upwards with the assistance of gas-driven filter pressing, as indicated by the presence of miarolitic cavities, thus forming the BG

  18. Extraterrestrial cause for the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alvarez, L. W.; Alvarez, W.; Asaro, F.; Michel, H. V.

    1980-01-01

    Direct physical evidence is presented for an unusual event at exactly the time of extinctions in the planktonic realm. Deep-sea limestones exposed in Italy, Denmark, and New Zealand indicate iridium increases of about 30, 160, and 20 times, respectively, above the background level at precisely the time of the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinctions, 65 million years ago. Reasons are given that this iridium is of extraterrestrial origin, but did not come from a nearby supernova. A hypothesis is set forth which accounts for the extinctions and the iridium observations. One prediction of this hypothesis is verified, that the chemical composition of the boundary clay, which is thought to come from the stratospheric dust, is markedly different from that of clay mixed with the chemically similar Cretaceous and Tertiary limestones.

  19. New angiosperm genera from cretaceous sections of northern Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alekseev, P. I.; Herman, A. B.; Shchepetov, S. V.

    2014-11-01

    The Cretaceous floras of northern Asia represented by the Antibes flora of the Chulym-Yenisei area of West Siberia, Kaivayam flora of northwestern Kamchatka, and Grebenka flora of the Anadyr River basin in Chukotka are reviewed. These floras characterize the Late Cretaceous Siberian-Canadian Paleofloristic Region, where they developed in humid warm temperate climatic environments. Two new angiosperm genera are described: genus Chachlovia P. Alekseev et Herman with species C. kiyensis P. Alekseev, sp. nov. and C. dombeyopsoida (Herman) Herman, comb. nov. and genus Soninia Herman et Shczepetov with species S. asiatica P. Alekseev, sp. nov. and S. integerrima Herman et Shczepetov, sp. nov. The species Chachlovia kiyensis and Soninia asiatica were characteristic components of the Antibes flora. Chachlovia dombeyopsoida and Soninia integerrima were constituents of the Kaivayam and Grebenka floras, respectively.

  20. Mummified precocial bird wings in mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber

    PubMed Central

    Xing, Lida; McKellar, Ryan C.; Wang, Min; Bai, Ming; O'Connor, Jingmai K.; Benton, Michael J.; Zhang, Jianping; Wang, Yan; Tseng, Kuowei; Lockley, Martin G.; Li, Gang; Zhang, Weiwei; Xu, Xing

    2016-01-01

    Our knowledge of Cretaceous plumage is limited by the fossil record itself: compression fossils surrounding skeletons lack the finest morphological details and seldom preserve visible traces of colour, while discoveries in amber have been disassociated from their source animals. Here we report the osteology, plumage and pterylosis of two exceptionally preserved theropod wings from Burmese amber, with vestiges of soft tissues. The extremely small size and osteological development of the wings, combined with their digit proportions, strongly suggests that the remains represent precocial hatchlings of enantiornithine birds. These specimens demonstrate that the plumage types associated with modern birds were present within single individuals of Enantiornithes by the Cenomanian (99 million years ago), providing insights into plumage arrangement and microstructure alongside immature skeletal remains. This finding brings new detail to our understanding of infrequently preserved juveniles, including the first concrete examples of follicles, feather tracts and apteria in Cretaceous avialans. PMID:27352215

  1. Mummified precocial bird wings in mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber.

    PubMed

    Xing, Lida; McKellar, Ryan C; Wang, Min; Bai, Ming; O'Connor, Jingmai K; Benton, Michael J; Zhang, Jianping; Wang, Yan; Tseng, Kuowei; Lockley, Martin G; Li, Gang; Zhang, Weiwei; Xu, Xing

    2016-01-01

    Our knowledge of Cretaceous plumage is limited by the fossil record itself: compression fossils surrounding skeletons lack the finest morphological details and seldom preserve visible traces of colour, while discoveries in amber have been disassociated from their source animals. Here we report the osteology, plumage and pterylosis of two exceptionally preserved theropod wings from Burmese amber, with vestiges of soft tissues. The extremely small size and osteological development of the wings, combined with their digit proportions, strongly suggests that the remains represent precocial hatchlings of enantiornithine birds. These specimens demonstrate that the plumage types associated with modern birds were present within single individuals of Enantiornithes by the Cenomanian (99 million years ago), providing insights into plumage arrangement and microstructure alongside immature skeletal remains. This finding brings new detail to our understanding of infrequently preserved juveniles, including the first concrete examples of follicles, feather tracts and apteria in Cretaceous avialans. PMID:27352215

  2. An Early Cretaceous heterodontosaurid dinosaur with filamentous integumentary structures.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xiao-Ting; You, Hai-Lu; Xu, Xing; Dong, Zhi-Ming

    2009-03-19

    Ornithischia is one of the two major groups of dinosaurs, with heterodontosauridae as one of its major clades. Heterodontosauridae is characterized by small, gracile bodies and a problematic phylogenetic position. Recent phylogenetic work indicates that it represents the most basal group of all well-known ornithischians. Previous heterodontosaurid records are mainly from the Early Jurassic period (205-190 million years ago) of Africa. Here we report a new heterodontosaurid, Tianyulong confuciusi gen. et sp. nov., from the Early Cretaceous period (144-99 million years ago) of western Liaoning Province, China. Tianyulong extends the geographical distribution of heterodontosaurids to Asia and confirms the clade's previously questionable temporal range extension into the Early Cretaceous period. More surprisingly, Tianyulong bears long, singular and unbranched filamentous integumentary (outer skin) structures. This represents the first confirmed report, to our knowledge, of filamentous integumentary structures in an ornithischian dinosaur. PMID:19295609

  3. Early environmental effects of the terminal Cretaceous impact

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilmour, Iain; Wolbach, Wendy S.; Anders, Edward

    1988-01-01

    The environmental aftereffects of the terminal Cretaceous impact are examined on the basis of the carbon and nitrogen geochemistry in the basal layer of the K-T boundary clay at Woodside Creek, New Zealand. It is shown that organic carbon and nitrogen at this level are enriched by 15 and 20 times Cretaceous values, respectively. Also, it is found that the N abundances and, to a lesser extent, the organic C abundances are closely correlated with the Ir abundances. The changes in carbon and nitrogen content through the basal layer are outlined, focusing on the possible environmental conditions which could have caused enrichment. In addition, consideration is given to the soot and pyrotoxin content. Possible scenarios for the K-T event and the importance of selective extinction are discussed.

  4. Selectivity of end-Cretaceous marine bivalve extinctions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jablonski, D.; Raup, D. M.

    1995-01-01

    Analyses of the end-Cretaceous or Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction show no selectivity of marine bivalve genera by life position (burrowing versus exposed), body size, bathymetric position on the continental shelf, or relative breadth of bathymetric range. Deposit-feeders as a group have significantly lower extinction intensities than suspension-feeders, but this pattern is due entirely to low extinction in two groups (Nuculoida and Lucinoidea), which suggests that survivorship was not simply linked to feeding mode. Geographically widespread genera have significantly lower extinction intensities than narrowly distributed genera. These results corroborate earlier work suggesting that some biotic factors that enhance survivorship during times of lesser extinction intensities are ineffectual during mass extinctions.

  5. Definition of Greater Gulf Basin Lower Cretaceous and Upper Cretaceous Lower Cenomanian Shale Gas Assessment Unit, United States Gulf of Mexico Basin Onshore and State Waters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dennen, Kristin O.; Hackley, Paul C.

    2012-01-01

    An assessment unit (AU) for undiscovered continuous “shale” gas in Lower Cretaceous (Aptian and Albian) and basal Upper Cretaceous (lower Cenomanian) rocks in the USA onshore Gulf of Mexico coastal plain recently was defined by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The AU is part of the Upper Jurassic-Cretaceous-Tertiary Composite Total Petroleum System (TPS) of the Gulf of Mexico Basin. Definition of the AU was conducted as part of the 2010 USGS assessment of undiscovered hydrocarbon resources in Gulf Coast Mesozoic stratigraphic intervals. The purpose of defining the Greater Gulf Basin Lower Cretaceous Shale Gas AU was to propose a hypothetical AU in the Cretaceous part of the Gulf Coast TPS in which there might be continuous “shale” gas, but the AU was not quantitatively assessed by the USGS in 2010.

  6. The Cretaceous opening of the South Atlantic Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granot, Roi; Dyment, Jérôme

    2015-03-01

    The separation of South America from Africa during the Cretaceous is poorly understood due to the long period of stable polarity of the geomagnetic field, the Cretaceous Normal Superchron (CNS, lasted between ∼121 and 83.6 Myr ago). We present a new identification of magnetic anomalies located within the southern South Atlantic magnetic quiet zones that have arisen due to past variations in the strength of the dipolar geomagnetic field. Using these anomalies, together with fracture zone locations, we calculate the first set of magnetic anomalies-based finite rotation parameters for South America and Africa during that period. The kinematic solutions are generally consistent with fracture zone traces and magnetic anomalies outside the area used to construct them. The rotations indicate that seafloor spreading rates increased steadily throughout most of the Cretaceous and decreased sharply at around 80 Myr ago. A change in plate motion took place in the middle of the superchron, roughly 100 Myr ago, around the time of the final breakup (i.e., separation of continental-oceanic boundary in the Equatorial Atlantic). Prominent misfit between the calculated synthetic flowlines (older than Anomaly Q1) and the fracture zones straddling the African Plate in the central South Atlantic could only be explained by a combination of seafloor asymmetry and internal dextral motion (<100 km) within South America, west of the Rio Grande fracture zone. This process has lasted until ∼92 Myr ago after which both Africa and South America (south of the equator) behaved rigidly. The clearing of the continental-oceanic boundaries within the Equatorial Atlantic Gateway was probably completed by ∼95 Myr ago. The clearing was followed by a progressive widening and deepening of the passageway, leading to the emergence of north-south flow of intermediate and deep-water which might have triggered the global cooling of bottom water and the end for the Cretaceous greenhouse period.

  7. Paleoenvironments of the Jurassic and Cretaceous Oceans: Selected Highlights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ogg, J. G.

    2007-12-01

    There are many themes contributing to the sedimentation history of the Mesozoic oceans. This overview briefly examines the roles of the carbonate compensation depth (CCD) and the associated levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, of the evolution of marine calcareous microplankton, of major transgressive and regressive trends, and of super-plume eruptions. Initiation of Atlantic seafloor spreading in the Middle Jurassic coincided with an elevated carbonate compensation depth (CCD) in the Pacific-Tethys mega-ocean. Organic-rich sediments that would become the oil wealth of regions from Saudi Arabia to the North Sea were deposited during a continued rise in CCD during the Oxfordian-early Kimmeridgian, which suggests a possible increase in carbon dioxide release by oceanic volcanic activity. Deep-sea deposits in near-equatorial settings are dominated by siliceous shales or cherts, which reflect the productivity of siliceous microfossils in the tropical surface waters. The end-Jurassic explosion in productivity by calcareous microplankton contributed to the lowering of the CCD and onset of the chalk ("creta") deposits that characterize the Tithonian and lower Cretaceous in all ocean basins. During the mid-Cretaceous, the eruption of enormous Pacific igneous provinces (Ontong Java Plateau and coeval edifices) increased carbon dioxide levels. The resulting rise in CCD terminated chalk deposition in the deep sea. The excess carbon was progressively removed in widespread black-shale deposits in the Atlantic basins and other regions - another major episode of oil source rock. A major long-term transgression during middle and late Cretaceous was accompanied by extensive chalk deposition on continental shelves and seaways while the oceanic CCD remained elevated. Pacific guyots document major oscillations (sequences) of global sea level superimposed on this broad highstand. The Cretaceous closed with a progressive sea-level regression and lowering of the CCD that again enabled

  8. Major wildfires at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anders, Edward; Wolbach, Wendy S.; Gilmour, Iain

    1991-01-01

    The current status of the reconstruction of major biomass fire events at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary is discussed. Attention is given to the sources of charcoal and soot, the identification of biomass and fossil carbon, and such ignition-related problems as delated fires, high atmospheric O2 content, ignition mechanisms, and the greenhouse-effect consequences of fire on the scale envisioned. Consequences of these factors for species extinction patterns are noted.

  9. Geography of end-Cretaceous marine bivalve extinctions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raup, David M.; Jablonski, David

    1993-01-01

    Analysis of the end-Cretaceous mass extinction, based on 3514 occurrences of 340 genera of marine bivalves (Mollusca), suggests that extinction intensities were uniformly global; no latitudinal gradients or other geographic patterns are detected. Elevated extinction intensities in some tropical areas are entirely a result of the distribution of one extinct group of highly specialized bivalves, the rudists. When rudists are omitted, intensities at those localities are statistically indistinguishable from those of both the rudist-free tropics and extratropical localities.

  10. Paleomagnetism of the Cretaceous Morelos and Mezcala Formations, southern Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molina Garza, Roberto S.; Böhnel, Harald N.; Hernández, Teodoro

    2003-01-01

    A paleomagnetic study of platform-facies carbonate rocks of the mid-Cretaceous Morelos Formation and deep-water carbonate rocks of the overlying Upper Cretaceous Mezcala Formation, sampled at Zopilote canyon, in Guerrero State, southern Mexico, indicates that their characteristic magnetization was acquired contemporaneously with folding of these rocks during the Late Cretaceous Laramide orogeny. The remanence carrier is interpreted to be magnetite, although other mineral phases of high coercivity carry recent secondary overprints. The overall mean is of Dec=323.1° and Inc=36.5° ( k=162.7; α95=2.7°; N=18 sites; 64% unfolding). Comparison with the North America reference direction indicates that this area has experienced a small, yet statistically significant, counterclockwise direction of 19.2±4.0°. Similar rotations are documented in other localities from southern Mexico; rotations are linked to mid-Tertiary deformation associated with the left-lateral strike-slip fault system that accommodated motion of the Chortis and Xolapa blocks.

  11. New petrofacies in upper Cretaceous section of southern California

    SciTech Connect

    Colburn, I.P.; Oliver, D.

    1986-04-01

    A distinctive sandstone-conglomerate petrofacies is recognized throughout the Late Cretaceous (Maestrichtian-late Campanian) Chatsworth Formation in the Simi Hills. It is named the Woolsey Canyon petrofacies after the district where it was first recognized. The petrofacies is also recognized in the Late Cretaceous (late Campanian and possibly early Maestrichtian) Tuna Canyon Formation of the central Santa Monica Mountains. The conglomerates in the petrofacies are composed predominantly of angular pebble-size clasts of argillite, quartz-rich rocks (orthoquartzarenite, metaorthoquartzarenite, mice quartz schist) and leucocratic plutoniate (granite-granodiorite). The conglomerate texture and composition are mirrored in the sandstone. The uniformly angular character of the conglomerate clasts and the survival of argillite clasts indicate that the detritus underwent no more than 5 mi of subaerial transport before it entered the deep marine realm. Foraminifers collected from mudstones interbedded with the conglomerates indicate upper bathyal water depth at the site of deposition. A source terrane of low to moderate relief is indicated by the absence of cobbles and boulders. Bed forms, sedimentary structures, and textural features indicate the detritus moved north from its source terrane to be deposited by turbidity currents, debris flows, and grain flows on the Chatsworth Submarine Fan. The detritus of the Woolsey Canyon petrofacies was derived from basement rocks, now largely buried beneath the Los Angeles basin, that were being eroded during the formation of the Cretaceous Los Angeles erosion surface. The detritus came from the Los Angeles arch of that surface.

  12. Cretaceous shallow drilling, US Western Interior: Core research

    SciTech Connect

    Arthur, M.A.

    1993-02-17

    This project is a continuing multidisciplinary study of middle to Upper Cretaceous marine carbonate and clastic rocks in the Utah-Colorado-Kansas corridor of the old Cretaceous seaway that extended from the Gulf Coast to the Arctic during maximum Cretaceous transgressions. It is collaborative between in the US Geological Survey (W.E. Dean, P.I.) and University researchers led by The Pennsylvania State University(M.A. Arthur, P.I.) and funded by DOE and the USGS, in part. Research focusses on the Greenhom, Niobrara and lower Pierre Shale units and their equivalents, combining biostratigraphic/paleoecologic studies, inorganic, organic and stable isotopic geochemical studies, mineralogical investigations and high-resolution geophysical logging. This research requires unweathered samples and continuous smooth exposures'' in the form of cores from at least 4 relatively shallow reference holes (i.e. < 1000m) in transect from east to west across the basin. The major initial effort was recovery in Year 1 of the project of continuous cores from each site in the transect. This drilling provided samples and logs of strata ranging from pelagic sequences that contain organic-carbon-rich marine source rocks to nearshore coal-bearing units. This transect also will provide information on the extent of thermal maturation and migration of hydrocarbons in organic-carbon-rich strata along a burial gradient.

  13. Source rock evaluation of Cretaceous and Tertiary series in Tunisia

    SciTech Connect

    Oudin, J. )

    1988-08-01

    Tunisia represents a mature hydrocarbon province with a long exploration history. In the Sfax-Kerkennah and Gabes Gulf areas, the hydrocarbon accumulations are located in series of Cretaceous and Tertiary age. To estimate the petroleum potential of this region, an evaluation of the source rock quality of the Cretaceous and Tertiary series was undertaken. In the Sfax-Kerkennak area, most of the wells studied indicate that, in the Tertiary, Ypresian and lower Lutetian show good organic content but, taking into account the potential productivity, only the Ypresian can be considered as a potential source rock. In the Cretaceous, mainly studies in the offshore area of the Gabes Gulf, the amount of organic matter is fair and it is chiefly located in Albian and Cenomanian. The Vraconian with its quite good potential is a valuable source rock. Due to the difference in the environment of deposition for these two possible source rocks - the Ypresian with its lagoon facies being carbonate and the Vraconian shaly - variations in the type of organic matter can be noted, although both are of marine origin. The hydrocarbons generated from these source rocks reflect these variations and permit them to correlate the different crude oils found in this area with their original source beds.

  14. Source rock potential of middle Cretaceous rocks in southwestern Montana

    SciTech Connect

    Dyman, T.S.; Palacas, J.G.; Tysdal, R.G.; Perry, W.J. Jr.; Pawlewicz, M.J.

    1996-08-01

    The middle Cretaceous in southwestern Montana is composed of a marine and nonmarine succession of predominantly clastic rocks that were deposited along the western margin of the Western Interior Seaway. In places, middle Cretaceous rocks contain appreciable total organic carbon (TOC), such as 5.59% for the Mowry Shale and 8.11% for the Frontier Formation in the Madison Range. Most samples, however, exhibit less than 1.0% TOC. The genetic or hydrocarbon potential (S{sub 1}+S{sub 2}) of all the samples analyzed, except one, yield less than 1 mg HC/g rock, strongly indicating poor potential for generating commercial amounts of hydrocarbons. Out of 51 samples analyzed, only one (a Thermopolis Shale sample from the Snowcrest Range) showed a moderate petroleum potential of 3.1 mg HC/g rock. Most of the middle Cretaceous samples are thermally immature to marginally mature, with vitrinite reflectance ranging from about 0.4 to 0.6% R{sub o}. Maturity is high in the Pioneer Mountains, where vitrinite reflectance averages 3.4% R{sub o}, and at Big Sky, Montana, where vitrinite reflectance averages 2.5% R{sub o}. At both localities, high R{sub o} values are due to local heat sources, such as the Pioneer batholith in the Pioneer Mountains.

  15. Early cretaceous radiolarian assemblages from the East Sakhalin Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurilov, D. V.; Vishnevskaya, V. S.

    2011-02-01

    Three-dimensional radiolarian skeletons isolated from rock matrix in HF solution and then studied under scanning electron microscope substantiate the Early Cretaceous age of volcanogenic-cherty deposits sampled from fragmentary rock successions of the East Sakhalin Mountains. Accordingly the Berriasian age is established for jasper packets formerly attributed to the Upper Paleozoic-Mesozoic Daldagan Group; the Valanginian radiolarians are identified in cherty rock intercalations in the Upper Paleozoic (?) Ivashkino Formation; the Berriasian-Barremian assemblage is macerated from cherty tuffites of the Jurassic-Cretaceous Ostraya Formation; and the Aptian-early Albian radiolarians are characteristic of tuffaceous cherty rocks sampled from the Cretaceous Khoe Formation of the Nabil Group. Photographic documentation of radiolarian skeletons specifies taxonomic composition and age of the Berriasian, Valanginian, Berriasian-Valanginian, Barremian, and Aptian-Albian radiolarian assemblages from the East Sakhalin Mountains, and their evolution as related to abiotic events is considered. Coexistence of Tethyan and Pacific species in the same rock samples evidence origin of radiolarian assemblages in an ecotone. Consequently, the assemblages are applicable for intra- and interregional correlations and paleogeographic reconstructions.

  16. Cretaceous sauropod diversity and taxonomic succession in South America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Jesus Faria, Caio César; Riga, Bernardo González; dos Anjos Candeiro, Carlos Roberto; da Silva Marinho, Thiago; David, Leonardo Ortiz; Simbras, Felipe Medeiros; Castanho, Roberto Barboza; Muniz, Fellipe Pereira; Gomes da Costa Pereira, Paulo Victor Luiz

    2015-08-01

    The South American sauropod dinosaurs fossil record is one of the world's most relevant for their abundance (51 taxa) and biogeographical implications. Their historical biogeography was influenced by the continental fragmentation of Gondwana. The scenery of biogeographic and stratigraphic distributions can provide new insight into the causes of the evolution of the sauropods in South America. One of the most important events of the sauropods evolution is the progressive replacement of Diplodocimorpha by the Titanosauriformes during the early Late Cretaceous. The fluctuation of the sea levels is frequently related to the diversity of sauropods, but it is necessary to take into account the geological context in each continent. During the Maastrichthian, a global sea level drop has been described; in contrast, in South America there was a significant rise in sea level (named 'Atlantic transgression') which is confirmed by sedimentary sequences and the fossil record of marine vertebrates. This process occurred during the Maastrichtian, when the hadrosaurs arrived from North America. The titanosaurs were amazingly diverse during the Late Cretaceous, both in size and morphology, but they declined prior to their final extinction in the Cretaceous/Paleocene boundary (65.5Yrs).

  17. Late Cretaceous terrestrial vertebrate fauna, North Slope, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Clemens, W.A.; Allison, C.W.

    1985-01-01

    Closely related terrestrial vertebrates in Cretaceous mid-latitude (30/sup 0/ to 50/sup 0/) faunas of North America and Asia as well as scattered occurrences of footprints and skin impressions suggested that in the Late Mesozoic the Alaskan North Slope supported a diverse fauna. In 1961 abundant skeletal elements of Cretaceous, Alaskan dinosaurs (hadrosaurids) were discovered by the late R.L. Liscomb. This material is being described by K.L. Davies. Additional fossils collected by E.M. Brouwers and her associates include skeletal elements of hadrosaurid and carnosaurian (.tyrannosaurid) dinosaurs and other vertebrates. The fossil locality on the North Slope is not at about 70/sup 0/N. In the Late Cretaceous the members of this fauna were subject to the daylight regime and environment at a paleolatitude closer to 80/sup 0/N. Current hypotheses attributing extinctions of dinosaurs and some other terrestrial vertebrates to impact of an extraterrestrial object cite periods of darkness, decreased temperature (possibly followed by extreme warming) and acid rain as the direct causes of their demise. Unless members of this North Slope fauna undertook long-distance migrations, their high latitude occurrence indicates groups of dinosaurs and other terrestrial vertebrates regularly tolerated months of darkness.

  18. Masirah Graben, Oman: A hidden Cretaceous rift basin

    SciTech Connect

    Beauchamp, W.H.; Ries, A.C.; Coward, M.P.

    1995-06-01

    Reflection seismic data, well data, geochemical data, and surface geology suggest that a Cretaceous rift basin exists beneath the thrusted allochthonous sedimentary sequence of the Masirah graben, Oman. The Masirah graben is located east of the Huqf uplift, parallel to the southern coast of Oman. The eastern side of the northeast-trending Huqf anticlinorium is bounded by an extensional fault system that is downthrown to the southeast, forming the western edge of the Masirah graben. This graben is limited to the east by a large wedge of sea floor sediments and oceanic crust, that is stacked as imbricate thrusts. These sediments/ophiolites were obducted onto the southern margin of the Arabian plate during the collision of the Indian/Afghan plates at the end of the Cretaceous. Most of the Masirah graben is covered by an allochthonous sedimentary sequence, which is complexly folded and deformed above a detachment. This complexly deformed sequence contrasts sharply with what is believed to be a rift sequence below the ophiolites. The sedimentary sequence in the Masirah graben was stable until further rifting of the Arabian Sea/Gulf of Aden in the late Tertiary, resulting in reactivation of earlier rift-associated faults. Wells drilled in the Masirah graben in the south penetrated reservoir quality rocks in the Lower Cretaceous Natih and Shuaiba carbonates. Analyses of oil extracted from Infracambrian sedimentary rocks penetrated by these wells suggest an origin from a Mesozoic source rock.

  19. Early Cretaceous Ocean Dynamics from Clumped Isotope Thermometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    VanDeVelde, J. H.; Price, G. D.; Passey, B. H.; Grimes, S. T.

    2014-12-01

    Existing records suggest that Early Cretaceous temperatures were warmer than modern conditions, but were moderate compared to the mid-Cretaceous super-greenhouse. High-latitude marine oxygen isotopes indicate near-freezing polar temperatures, while glendonites and dropstones suggest periodic existence of polar ice. Conventional oxygen isotope paleothermometry is problematic due to its control by both temperature and seawater composition, which is dependent on both global ice volume and more regional hydrologic variations. In order to overcome this limitation, we performed clumped isotope analysis on belemnite rostra of Valanginian age (~140-134 Ma) from localities across a range of paleolatitudes. We find temperatures well above modern values for these sites, but still compatible with sub-freezing poles. Additionally, the oxygen isotopic composition of seawater calculated from these same analyses is remarkably similar to modern values, and differs significantly from modeled Cretaceous seawater. These high oxygen isotope ratios could be the product of isotopic disequilibrium in belemnites, but are more likely to be the result of previously unrecognized basin- or global-scale hydrological factors, or ice sheet growth. Our results therefore argue for a generally warm Valanginian climate but with the potential for significant polar ice.

  20. Paleocurrent analysis of Cretaceous Mitchell Formation, north-central Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    Sandefur, C.A.; Fisk, L.H.

    1989-03-01

    Cretaceous sedimentary rocks in north-central Oregon contain both potential petroleum source rocks and reservoir rocks. Thus, determining their extent under the cover of Tertiary volcanics is of great importance to future petroleum exploration in the southern portion of the Columbia basin. Limited studies of sediment transport direction have been previously reported by several workers; however, no conclusive evidence was obtained. This study was undertaken to resolve the differences in the previously presented interpretations. The outcropping sedimentary sequence represents part of a subsea fan complex consisting of fan-apron facies turbidites and mudstones (Hudspeth mudstone facies) and channel-facies conglomerates and sandstones (Gable Creek conglomerate facies). Paleocurrent data derived from sole marks, flute casts, clast imbrication, and alignment of elongate plant fragments document that sediment transport was primarily from the south-southeast toward the north-northwest. Thus, the greatest potential for petroleum production from Cretaceous sediments in north-central Oregon lies to the west and northwest of the Mitchell area in northeast-southwest elongated rift basins. These basins, presumably containing thick accumulations of Cretaceous marine sediment fill, are now evidenced by large gravity and magnetic lows.

  1. Significance of aragonite cements around Cretaceous marine methane seeps

    SciTech Connect

    Savard, M.M.; Beauchamp, B.; Veizer, J.

    1996-05-01

    Detailed petrography and geochemistry of carbonate precipitates in Cretaceous cold seep mounds from the Canadian Arctic show spectacular early diagenetic products: some still-preserved splays and isopachous layers of fine, acicular aragonite, and large botryoids and crusts of low-magnesium calcite showing unusual entanglement of former fibrous calcite and aragonite. The latter mineralogy is suggested by clear, flat-terminated cathodoluminescence patterns interpreted as ancient crystal growth steps, and the former by rhombohedral terminations. The early cement phases very likely precipitated in cold Arctic water dominated by bicarbonates derived from bacterially oxidized methane: these cements have {delta}{sup 13}C values around {minus}44.0% and {delta}{sup 18}O values of 1.8 to 0.1% PDB. Coexistence of calcite and aragonite early cements in the Cretaceous seep mounds is unusual, because precipitation occurred in high-latitude, cold-water settings, and during a so-called calcite sea mode. As in modern marine hydrocarbon seeps, the chemistry of the Cretaceous system was apparently controlled by chemosynthetic bacterial activity, resulting in high a{sub HCO{sub 3}{sup {minus}}} that promoted precipitation of carbonates. The authors suggest that, locally, fluctuations in a{sub HCO{sub 3}{sup {minus}}}/a{sub SO{sub 4}{sup 2{minus}}} resulted in oscillating aragonite or calcite supersaturation, and hence, controlled the mineralogy of the early precipitates.

  2. Depth-Transect Across the Cretaceous/Paleogene Boundary in the SE Atlantic Ocean: New Insights From the Benthic Foraminiferal Record.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alegret, L.; Thomas, E.

    2014-12-01

    The response of benthic foraminifera to the Cretaceous/Paleogene (K/Pg) impact event is key to reconstruct paleoenvironmental changes and the specific mechanisms triggering faunal turnover in the marine realm, especially because this group did not suffer significant extinction (thus shows a continuous record across the boundary), and because its faunal turnover shows paleobiogeographic differences that remain to be explained. The K/Pg transition was cored along a depth transect on ODP Leg 208 (Walvis Ridge, eastern South Atlantic Ocean), where the K/Pg boundary is marked by a sharp transition from Maastrichtian clay-bearing nannofossil ooze to Danian dark reddish to brown, clay-rich nannofossil-ooze and clay. We analysed the benthic foraminiferal turnover at Sites 1262 (upper abyssal paleodepth; present depth 4755 m) and 1267 (lower bathyal; present depth 4355 m). The record at 1267 appears to be more complete than at 1262, especially the interval just at the K/Pg boundary (Westerhold et al. 2008). The percentage of infaunal taxa (living buried within the sediment) was slightly lower at Site 1262 than at Site 1267, as expected for a deeper, more oligotrophic setting where the scarce food available is preferentially taken up by epifaunal morphogroups. The dominance of calcareous taxa suggests that both sites were located above the CCD throughout the K/Pg transition. Benthic assemblages from both sites are similar, but the species Tappanina eouvigeriniformis is common at Site 1267, as at lower bathyal Southern Ocean Site 690, but is absent at Site 1262. Extinction rates across the K/Pg boundary were very low at both sites. Morphogroup composition did not significantly change across the boundary at Site 1262, but the increase in % infaunal morphogroups and benthic foraminiferal accumulation rates at Site 1267 point to an enhanced food supply immediately after the impact. These results suggest that a short interval is missing from the lowermost Danian at Site 1262.

  3. Cretaceous Magmatism and Deformation in Central-west Tibet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arnaud, N. O.; Paquette, J. L.; Leloup, P. H.; Valli, F.; Guillot, S.; Li, H.; Xu, Z.; Lacassin, R.; Tapponnier, P.

    2003-04-01

    While post-jurassic magmatism metamorphism and deformation are widespread in the Himalaya and is also reported along narrow belts along the northern edge of Tibet and further north, they are scarce on the Tibetan Plateau. In western Tibet, the Longmu lake is limited to the south by a significant relief marking a range of magmatic and metamorphic rocks, and bordered by the active left-lateral Goza fault. The range exposes essentially early Mesozoic rocks probably the remnants of a Triassic suture. The highest summits along the Longmu lake are composed of two mica leucocratic granites intruding unprecisely dated Cretaceous sediments (Red Beds). Those granites are locally strongly sheared, although those facies were not found in place. Where observed in the granites this deformation was partly strike slip although less intense, with a subvertical foliation striking N90-110, parallel to the Goza fault. The U/Pb age of the granites indicates a late cretaceous intrusion. 40Ar/39Ar dating yields mica cooling ages of 102 Ma close to the emplacement age both in the undeformed and the deformed facies and thus indicate that deformation was acquired during or very shortly after emplacement: those granites are therefore partly syn-tectonic. Modeling of K-feldspars 40Ar/39Ar ages show rapid cooling just after emplacement, followed by a period of protracted cooling and finally much faster cooling at ca 55 Ma. The discovery of a phase of Cretaceous magmatism and deformation in central Tibet suggests a localized event of probably crustal melting associated with deformation of the same age. Strike slip movements of Cretaceous age have already been reported in a metamorphic corridor locally bordering the present day traces of Altyn Tagh and Kunlun faults (ARNAUD et al., 2003). The discovery of similar facies in central Tibet suggests that this event must be extended further south into Tibet and could therefore has a wider significance than previously thought. The fact that the Goza

  4. Stratigraphy and palaeoclimate of Spitsbergen, Svalbard, during the Early Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vickers, Madeleine; Price, Gregory; Watkinson, Matthew; FitzPatrick, Meriel; Jerrett, Rhodri

    2016-04-01

    During the Early Cretaceous, Spitsbergen was located at a palaeolatitude of ~60°N. Abundant fossil wood derived from conifer forests, dinosaur trackways, enigmatic deposits such as glendonites, and stable isotope data from the Early Cretaceous formations of Spitsbergen suggest that the climate at that time was much more dynamic than the traditional view of "invariant greenhouse" conditions on Earth. The Early Cretaceous succession in central Spitsbergen comprises a regressive-transgressive mega-cycle. This is made up of the deep water to wave-dominated, Berriasian-Hauterivian Rurikfjellet Formation; the deltaic, Barremian Helvetiafjellet Formation; and the coastal to deep water, Aptian-Albian Carolinefjellet Formation. An erosion surface marks the base of the Helvetiafjellet Formation. Two regions with excellently exposed Early Cretaceous strata were chosen for study in this project: the Festningen section, on the north-western side of Isfjorden; and outcrops found along Adventdalen, near Longyearbyen, ~40km northeast of Festningen. We present the data collected in July 2015 from the Adventdalen area, and compare and correlate it with sedimentological and geochemical data collected from the Festningen succession in 2014. The Festningen section records a full sequence from the Berriasian to the Aptian, whereas the Longyearbyen sections record Aptian-Albian deposition. We use carbon isotope stratigraphy to constrain the Barremian-Aptian boundary in the previously only indirectly-dated Helvetiafjellet Formation, and to identify other major global climatic and carbon cycle perturbations in the Early Cretaceous. We are thus able to correlate this succession with other successions globally. We combine this δ13C(terrestrial) data with sedimentological and petrological data to elucidate the origins of enigmatic glendonites found in both regions. Glendonites are thought to be associated with cold-water (and therefore also cold-climate) conditions, although their mode of

  5. Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic exhumation history of the Malay Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    François, Thomas; Daanen, Twan; Matenco, Liviu; Willingshofer, Ernst; van der Wal, Jorien

    2015-04-01

    The evolution of Peninsular Malaysia up to the collisional period in the Triassic is well described but the evolution since the collision between Indochina and the Sukhothai Arc in Triassic times is less well described in the literature. The processes affecting Peninsular Malaysia during the Jurassic up to current day times have to explain the emplacement multiple intrusions (the Stong Complex, and the Kemahang granite), the Jurassic/Cretaceous onland basins, the Cenozoic offshore basins, and the asymmetric extension, which caused the exhumation of Taku Schists dome. The orogenic period in Permo-Triassic times, which also formed the Bentong-Raub suture zone, resulted in thickening of the continental crust of current day Peninsular Malaysia due to the collision of the Indochina continental block and the Sukhothai Arc, and is related to the subduction of oceanic crust once present between these continental blocks. The Jurassic/Cretaceous is a period of extension, resulting in the onland Jurassic/Cretaceous basins, synchronous melting of the crust, resulting in the emplacement Stong Complex and the Kemahang granite and thinning of the continental crust on the scale of the Peninsular, followed by uplift of the Peninsular. Different models can explain these observations: continental root removal, oceanic slab detachment, or slab delamination. These models all describe the melting of the lower crust due to asthenospheric upwelling, resulting in uplift and subsequent extension either due to mantle convective movements or gravitational instabilities related to uplift. The Cenozoic period is dominated by extension and rapid exhumation in the area as documented by low temperature thermocrological ages The extension in this period is most likely related to the subduction, which resumed at 45 Ma, of the Australian plate beneath the Eurasian plate after it terminated in Cretaceous times due to the collision of an Australian microcontinental fragment with the Sunda margin in the

  6. Sedimentology, stratigraphy, and extinctions during the Cretaceous-Paleogene transition at Bug Creek, Montana

    SciTech Connect

    Fastovsky, D.E.; Dott, R.H. Jr.

    1986-04-01

    Bug Creek Valley, the source of an unusual and controversial Cretaceous-Paleogene coincidence of mammals, dinosaurs, pollen, and iridium, exemplifies the importance of depositional process in the reconstruction of evolutionary events. Five sedimentary facies are recognized at Bug Creek: a cross-stratified sandstone, a green and purple siltstone, a lateral accretionary sandstone, a coal, and a variegated siltstone. Repeated fluvial channeling restricts the accuracy of lateral correlations, and the relationship of the fossil assemblage to the presumed Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary cannot be established. Sedimentologically, the Cretaceous-Paleogene transition is represented here by Cretaceous meandering channels that gave way initially to Paleogene swamp deposition. 13 references, 4 figures.

  7. Island life in the Cretaceous - faunal composition, biogeography, evolution, and extinction of land-living vertebrates on the Late Cretaceous European archipelago.

    PubMed

    Csiki-Sava, Zoltán; Buffetaut, Eric; Ősi, Attila; Pereda-Suberbiola, Xabier; Brusatte, Stephen L

    2015-01-01

    The Late Cretaceous was a time of tremendous global change, as the final stages of the Age of Dinosaurs were shaped by climate and sea level fluctuations and witness to marked paleogeographic and faunal changes, before the end-Cretaceous bolide impact. The terrestrial fossil record of Late Cretaceous Europe is becoming increasingly better understood, based largely on intensive fieldwork over the past two decades, promising new insights into latest Cretaceous faunal evolution. We review the terrestrial Late Cretaceous record from Europe and discuss its importance for understanding the paleogeography, ecology, evolution, and extinction of land-dwelling vertebrates. We review the major Late Cretaceous faunas from Austria, Hungary, France, Spain, Portugal, and Romania, as well as more fragmentary records from elsewhere in Europe. We discuss the paleogeographic background and history of assembly of these faunas, and argue that they are comprised of an endemic 'core' supplemented with various immigration waves. These faunas lived on an island archipelago, and we describe how this insular setting led to ecological peculiarities such as low diversity, a preponderance of primitive taxa, and marked changes in morphology (particularly body size dwarfing). We conclude by discussing the importance of the European record in understanding the end-Cretaceous extinction and show that there is no clear evidence that dinosaurs or other groups were undergoing long-term declines in Europe prior to the bolide impact. PMID:25610343

  8. Island life in the Cretaceous - faunal composition, biogeography, evolution, and extinction of land-living vertebrates on the Late Cretaceous European archipelago

    PubMed Central

    Csiki-Sava, Zoltán; Buffetaut, Eric; Ősi, Attila; Pereda-Suberbiola, Xabier; Brusatte, Stephen L.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The Late Cretaceous was a time of tremendous global change, as the final stages of the Age of Dinosaurs were shaped by climate and sea level fluctuations and witness to marked paleogeographic and faunal changes, before the end-Cretaceous bolide impact. The terrestrial fossil record of Late Cretaceous Europe is becoming increasingly better understood, based largely on intensive fieldwork over the past two decades, promising new insights into latest Cretaceous faunal evolution. We review the terrestrial Late Cretaceous record from Europe and discuss its importance for understanding the paleogeography, ecology, evolution, and extinction of land-dwelling vertebrates. We review the major Late Cretaceous faunas from Austria, Hungary, France, Spain, Portugal, and Romania, as well as more fragmentary records from elsewhere in Europe. We discuss the paleogeographic background and history of assembly of these faunas, and argue that they are comprised of an endemic ‘core’ supplemented with various immigration waves. These faunas lived on an island archipelago, and we describe how this insular setting led to ecological peculiarities such as low diversity, a preponderance of primitive taxa, and marked changes in morphology (particularly body size dwarfing). We conclude by discussing the importance of the European record in understanding the end-Cretaceous extinction and show that there is no clear evidence that dinosaurs or other groups were undergoing long-term declines in Europe prior to the bolide impact. PMID:25610343

  9. Equation of State of Amorphous MgSiO3 and (MgFe)SiO3 to Lowermost Mantle Pressures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinmyo, R.; Petitgirard, S.; Malfait, W.; Kupenko, I.; Rubie, D. C.

    2014-12-01

    Melting phenomena have a crucial importance during the Earth's formation and evolution. For example, a deep magma ocean of 1000 km or more has lead to the segregation of the core. Tomographic images of the Earth reveal ultra-low velocity zones at the core-mantle boundary that may be due to the presence of dense magmas or remnant zones of a deep basal magma ocean [1]. Unfortunately, measurements of amorphous silicate density over the entire pressure regime of the mantle are scarce and the density contrast between solid and liquid are difficult to assess due to the lack of such data. Only few studies have reported density measurements of amorphous silicates at high-pressure, with limitation up to 60 GPa. High-pressure acoustic velocity measurements have been used to calculate the density of MgSiO3 glass up to 30 GPa [2] but exhibit a large discrepancy compared to recent calculations [3]. SiO2 glass was measured up to 55 GPa using the X-ray absorption method through the diamond anvils [4] and very recently, X-ray diffraction has been used to infer the density of basaltic melt up to 60 GPa [5]. Here we report density measurement of MgSiO3 glass up to 130 GPa and (MgFe)SiO3 glass up to 55 GPa using a novel variation of the X-ray absorption method. The sample contained in a beryllium gasket was irradiated with a micro-focus X-ray beam in two directions: perpendicular and parallel to the compression axis to obtain the absorption coefficient and density under pressure. Our data constrain the first experimental EoS for (Mg,Fe)SiO3 and the first EoS for MgSiO3 up to lowermost mantle pressures. Technical details and EoS parameters will be shown in the presentation. We will address the implications for melts in the deep Earth based on compressibility, bulk modulus and density contrasts between iron-free and iron-bearing glasses. [1] Labrosse S. et al. Nature 2007 [2] Sanchez-Valle C. et al. Earth Planet. Sc. Lett. 2010 [3] Ghosh D. et al Am. Mineral. 2014 [4] Sato T. et al

  10. Bayesian Inversion for Ultra Low Velocity Zone parameters in the Earth's Lowermost Mantle: Multiple-Layered Structure Confirmed Beneath the East of the Philippines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pachhai, Surya; Tkalcic, Hrvoje; Dettmer, Jan

    2014-05-01

    Ultra low velocity zones (ULVZs) are structures sitting on the top of the core mantle boundary with a strong reduction in P- and S-wave velocity and increased density. ULVZs have been extensively studied using 1-D and 2-D modelling of seismic waves reflected from and transmitted through the core mantle boundary. However, their physical origin and associated dynamics are currently debated. In addition, the forward problem (waveform modelling) is highly non-linear and non-unique with strong correlations between ULVZ parameters. We develop a rigorous Bayesian inversion to address these challenges. Sampling of the posterior probability density (the solution to a Bayesian inverse problem) is based on parallel interacting Markov chains (parallel tempering), which allows efficient sampling of difficult parameter spaces including multiple modes and strong parameter correlations. Uncertainties of ULVZ parameters are naturally addressed by the posterior distribution. In addition, noise on the data (residual errors) is addressed by a hierarchical Bayesian model which estimates the standard deviation from the data. Results are examined in terms of marginal densities of the ULVZ posterior, including profile-marginal and joint-marginal densities. After demonstrating the feasibility of the method with synthetic examples, we apply the hierarchical Bayesian inversion to the waveforms of core reflected phases (ScP) from earthquakes originating in the Indonesian region and recorded on Hi-Net array stations in Japan. These waves sample the CMB beneath the east of the Philippines. The Bayesian information criterion (BIC) is applied to select the optimal parametrization (i.e., the number of layers) from competing ULVZ models. The BIC confirms the existence of a two-layer ULVZ in the lowermost mantle beneath the east of the Philippines. The upper ULVZ layer shows a sharp decrease in P- and S-wave velocity of up to ~11% and ~29%, and an increase in density of up to ~28%. This layer could

  11. Properties of inertia-gravity waves in the lowermost stratosphere as observed by the PANSY radar over Syowa Station in the Antarctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mihalikova, Maria; Sato, Kaoru; Tsutsumi, Masaki; Sato, Toru

    2016-05-01

    Inertia-gravity waves (IGWs) are an important component for the dynamics of the middle atmosphere. However, observational studies needed to constrain their forcing are still insufficient especially in the remote areas of the Antarctic region. One year of observational data (January to December 2013) by the PANSY radar of the wind components (vertical resolution of 150 m and temporal resolution of 30 min) are used to derive statistical analysis of the properties of IGWs with short vertical wavelengths ( ≤ 4 km) and ground-based periods longer than 4 h in the lowermost stratosphere (height range 10 to 12 km) with the help of the hodograph method. The annual change of the IGWs parameters are inspected but no pronounced year cycle is found. The year is divided into two seasons (summer and winter) based on the most prominent difference in the ratio of Coriolis parameter (f) to intrinsic frequency (ω^) distribution. Average of f/ω^ for the winter season is 0.40 and for the summer season 0.45 and the average horizontal wavelengths are 140 and 160 km respectively. Vertical wavelengths have an average of 1.85 km through the year. For both seasons the properties of IGWs with upward and downward propagation of the energy are also derived and compared. The percentage of downward propagating waves is 10.7 and 18.4 % in the summer and winter season respectively. This seasonal change is more than the one previously reported in the studies from mid-latitudes and model-based studies. It is in agreement with the findings of past radiosonde data-based studies from the Antarctic region. In addition, using the so-called dual-beam technique, vertical momentum flux and the variance of the horizontal perturbation velocities of IGWs are examined. Tropospheric disturbances of synoptic-scale are suggested as a

  12. Measurements of NO, NOy, N2O, and O3 during SPURT: implications for transport and chemistry in the lowermost stratosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hegglin, M. I.; Brunner, D.; Peter, T.; Hoor, P.; Fischer, H.; Staehelin, J.; Krebsbach, M.; Schiller, C.; Parchatka, U.; Weers, U.

    2006-04-01

    We present measurements of NO, NOy, O3, and N2O within the lowermost stratosphere (LMS) over Europe obtained during the SPURT project. The measurements cover all seasons between November 2001 and July 2003. They span a broad band of latitudes from 30° N to 75° N and a potential temperature range from 290 to 380 K. The measurements represent a comprehensive data set of these tracers and reveal atmospheric transport processes that influence tracer distributions in the LMS. Median mixing ratios of stratospheric tracers in equivalent latitude-potential temperature coordinates show a clear seasonal cycle related to the Brewer-Dobson circulation, with highest values in spring and lowest values in autumn. Vertical tracer profiles show strong gradients at the extratropical tropopause, suggesting that vertical (cross-isentropic) mixing is reduced above the tropopause. Pronounced meridional gradients in the tracer mixing ratios are found on potential temperature surfaces in the LMS. This suggests strongly reduced mixing along isentropes. Concurrent large gradients in static stability in the vertical direction, and of PV in the meridional direction, suggest the presence of a mixing barrier. Seasonal cycles were found in the correlation slopes ΔO3/ΔN2O and ΔNOy/ΔN2O well above the tropopause. Absolute slope values are smallest in spring indicating chemically aged stratospheric air originating from high altitudes and latitudes. Larger values were measured in summer and autumn suggesting that a substantial fraction of air takes a "short-cut" from the tropical tropopause region into the extratropical LMS. The seasonal change in the composition of the LMS has direct implications for the ozone chemistry in this region. Comparisons of measured NO with the critical NO value at which net ozone production changes from negative to positive, imply ozone production up to 20 K above the local tropopause in spring, up to 30 K in summer, and up to 40 K in autumn. Above these heights

  13. Modeling flow and sediment transport dynamics in the lowermost Mississippi River, Louisiana, USA, with an upstream alluvial-bedrock transition and a downstream bedrock-alluvial transition: Implications for land building using engineered diversions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viparelli, Enrica; Nittrouer, Jeffrey A.; Parker, Gary

    2015-03-01

    The lowermost Mississippi River, defined herein as the river segment downstream of the Old River Control Structure and hydrodynamically influenced by the Gulf of Mexico, extends for approximately 500 km. This segment includes a bedrock (or more precisely, mixed bedrock-alluvial) reach that is bounded by an upstream alluvial-bedrock transition and a downstream bedrock-alluvial transition. Here we present a one-dimensional mathematical formulation for the long-term evolution of lowland rivers that is able to reproduce the morphodynamics of both the alluvial-bedrock and the bedrock-alluvial transitions. Model results show that the magnitude of the alluvial equilibrium bed slope relative to the bedrock surface slope and the depth of bedrock surface relative to the water surface base level strongly influence the mobile bed equilibrium of low-sloping river channels. Using data from the lowermost Mississippi River, the model is zeroed and validated at field scale by comparing the numerical results with field measurements. The model is then applied to predict the influence on the stability of channel bed elevation in response to delta restoration projects. In particular, the response of the river bed to the implementation of two examples of land-building diversions to extract water and sediment from the main channel is studied. In this regard, our model results show that engineered land-building diversions along the lowermost Mississippi River are capable of producing equilibrated bed profiles with only modest shoaling or erosion, and therefore, such diversions are a sustainable strategy for mitigating land loss within the Mississippi River Delta.

  14. The origin and early evolution of metatherian mammals: the Cretaceous record.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Thomas E; Brusatte, Stephen L; Wilson, Gregory P

    2014-01-01

    Metatherians, which comprise marsupials and their closest fossil relatives, were one of the most dominant clades of mammals during the Cretaceous and are the most diverse clade of living mammals after Placentalia. Our understanding of this group has increased greatly over the past 20 years, with the discovery of new specimens and the application of new analytical tools. Here we provide a review of the phylogenetic relationships of metatherians with respect to other mammals, discuss the taxonomic definition and diagnosis of Metatheria, outline the Cretaceous history of major metatherian clades, describe the paleobiology, biogeography, and macroevolution of Cretaceous metatherians, and provide a physical and climatic background of Cretaceous metatherian faunas. Metatherians are a clade of boreosphendian mammals that must have originated by the Late Jurassic, but the first unequivocal metatherian fossil is from the Early Cretaceous of Asia. Metatherians have the distinctive tightly interlocking occlusal molar pattern of tribosphenic mammals, but differ from Eutheria in their dental formula and tooth replacement pattern, which may be related to the metatherian reproductive process which includes an extended period of lactation followed by birth of extremely altricial young. Metatherians were widespread over Laurasia during the Cretaceous, with members present in Asia, Europe, and North America by the early Late Cretaceous. In particular, they were taxonomically and morphologically diverse and relatively abundant in the Late Cretaceous of western North America, where they have been used to examine patterns of biogeography, macroevolution, diversification, and extinction through the Late Cretaceous and across the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary. Metatherian diversification patterns suggest that they were not strongly affected by a Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution, but they clearly underwent a severe extinction across the K-Pg boundary. PMID:25589872

  15. The origin and early evolution of metatherian mammals: the Cretaceous record

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Thomas E.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Wilson, Gregory P.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Metatherians, which comprise marsupials and their closest fossil relatives, were one of the most dominant clades of mammals during the Cretaceous and are the most diverse clade of living mammals after Placentalia. Our understanding of this group has increased greatly over the past 20 years, with the discovery of new specimens and the application of new analytical tools. Here we provide a review of the phylogenetic relationships of metatherians with respect to other mammals, discuss the taxonomic definition and diagnosis of Metatheria, outline the Cretaceous history of major metatherian clades, describe the paleobiology, biogeography, and macroevolution of Cretaceous metatherians, and provide a physical and climatic background of Cretaceous metatherian faunas. Metatherians are a clade of boreosphendian mammals that must have originated by the Late Jurassic, but the first unequivocal metatherian fossil is from the Early Cretaceous of Asia. Metatherians have the distinctive tightly interlocking occlusal molar pattern of tribosphenic mammals, but differ from Eutheria in their dental formula and tooth replacement pattern, which may be related to the metatherian reproductive process which includes an extended period of lactation followed by birth of extremely altricial young. Metatherians were widespread over Laurasia during the Cretaceous, with members present in Asia, Europe, and North America by the early Late Cretaceous. In particular, they were taxonomically and morphologically diverse and relatively abundant in the Late Cretaceous of western North America, where they have been used to examine patterns of biogeography, macroevolution, diversification, and extinction through the Late Cretaceous and across the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary. Metatherian diversification patterns suggest that they were not strongly affected by a Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution, but they clearly underwent a severe extinction across the K-Pg boundary. PMID:25589872

  16. Can the Cretaceous Inform Estimates of Future Climate Sensitivity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lunt, Dan; Loptson, Claire; Markwick, Paul

    2013-04-01

    Palaeoclimate data is increasingly being used to evaluate models used for future prediction, and to provide observational constraints on climate sensitivity. However, the applicability of climatologies older than the Pliocene (c. 3 Ma) for future sensitivity has been questioned. In particular, palaeogeographic boundary conditions which are different from modern (i.e. continental positions, mountain extents and height, ocean floor depth, ice sheet extent and geometry) will influence climate and climate sensitivity, but to an extent which is unknown. In this study, we use a modelling framework to explore the role of palaeogeography in controlling climate and climate sensitivity during the Cretaceous interval of 'greenhouse' climates (c. 145-65 Ma). We carry out GCM simulations at 'high' and 'low' CO2 through all 12 Stages of the Cretaceous, and investigate the evolution of mean climate and of climate sensitivity. We evaluate our findings by comparing the model results with observations, both temporal global signals and time-slice geographical patterns. By comparing the palaeo results with modern climate sensitivity predictions, the work allows us to evaluate which time periods within the Cretaceous are most relevant for determining future climate sensitivity, and therefore where palaeodata collection can most usefully be targeted. It also provides insights into the relationship between single-site estimates of temperature vs. global mean, and the evolution of temperature at single sites due to continental drift and paleogeographical change alone. Overall, we provide insights into how our planet operates on long (multi-million year) timescales, and assess the utility of observations of past warm climates for informing future climate sensitivity.

  17. The origin and evolution of the Cretaceous Benue Trough (Nigeria)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benkhelil, J.

    The intracontinental Benue Trough was initiated during the Lower Cretaceous in relation with the Atlantic Ocean opening. The first stage of its evolution started in the Aptian, forming isolated basins with continental sedimentation. In the Albian times, a great delta developed in the Upper Benue Trough, while the first marine transgression coming from the opening Gulf of Guinea occurred in the south and reached the Middle Benue. The widespread Turonian transgression made the Atlantic and Tethys waters communicate through the Sahara, Niger basins and the Benue Trough. The tectonic evolution of the Benue Trough was closely controlled by transcurrent faulting through an axial fault system, developing local compressional and tensional regimes and resulting in basins and basement horsts along releasing and restraining bends of the faults. Two major compressional phases occurred: in the Abakaliki area (southern Benue) during the Santonian; and at the end of the Cretaceous in the Upper Benue Trough. In Abakaliki, the sedimentary infilling was severely deformed through folding and flattening, and moderate folding and fracturing occurred in the northeast. The Cretaceous magmatism was restricted to main fault zones in most of the trough but was particularly active in the Abakaliki Trough, where it has alkaline affinities. From Albian to Santonian, the magmatism was accompanied in part of the Abakaliki Trough by a low-grade metamorphism. Geophysical data indicate a crustal thinning beneath the Benue Trough and, at a superficial level, an axial basement high flanked by two elongated deep basins including isolated sub-basins. The model of the tectonic evolution of the trough is based upon a general sinistral wrenching along the trough responsible for the structural arrangement and the geometry of the sub-basins. During the early stages of the Gulf of Guinea opening the Benue Trough was probably the expression on land of the Equatorial Fracture Zones.

  18. Rise to dominance of angiosperm pioneers in European Cretaceous environments.

    PubMed

    Coiffard, Clément; Gomez, Bernard; Daviero-Gomez, Véronique; Dilcher, David L

    2012-12-18

    The majority of environments are dominated by flowering plants today, but it is uncertain how this dominance originated. This increase in angiosperm diversity happened during the Cretaceous period (ca. 145-65 Ma) and led to replacement and often extinction of gymnosperms and ferns. We propose a scenario for the rise to dominance of the angiosperms from the Barremian (ca. 130 Ma) to the Campanian (ca. 84 Ma) based on the European megafossil plant record. These megafossil data demonstrate that angiosperms migrated into new environments in three phases: (i) Barremian (ca. 130-125 Ma) freshwater lake-related wetlands; (ii) Aptian-Albian (ca. 125-100 Ma) understory floodplains (excluding levees and back swamps); and (iii) Cenomanian-Campanian (ca. 100-84 Ma) natural levees, back swamps, and coastal swamps. This scenario allows for the measured evolution of angiosperms in time and space synthesizing changes in the physical environment with concomitant changes in the biological environment. This view of angiosperm radiation in three phases reconciles previous scenarios based on the North American record. The Cretaceous plant record that can be observed in Europe is exceptional in many ways. (i) Angiosperms are well preserved from the Barremian to the Maastrichtian (ca. 65 Ma). (ii) Deposits are well constrained and dated stratigraphically. (iii) They encompass a full range of environments. (iv) European paleobotany provides many detailed studies of Cretaceous floras for analysis. These factors make a robust dataset for the study of angiosperm evolution from the Barremian to the Campanian that can be traced through various ecosystems and related to other plant groups occupying the same niches. PMID:23213256

  19. Rise to dominance of angiosperm pioneers in European Cretaceous environments

    PubMed Central

    Coiffard, Clément; Gomez, Bernard; Daviero-Gomez, Véronique; Dilcher, David L.

    2012-01-01

    The majority of environments are dominated by flowering plants today, but it is uncertain how this dominance originated. This increase in angiosperm diversity happened during the Cretaceous period (ca. 145–65 Ma) and led to replacement and often extinction of gymnosperms and ferns. We propose a scenario for the rise to dominance of the angiosperms from the Barremian (ca. 130 Ma) to the Campanian (ca. 84 Ma) based on the European megafossil plant record. These megafossil data demonstrate that angiosperms migrated into new environments in three phases: (i) Barremian (ca. 130–125 Ma) freshwater lake-related wetlands; (ii) Aptian–Albian (ca. 125–100 Ma) understory floodplains (excluding levees and back swamps); and (iii) Cenomanian–Campanian (ca. 100–84 Ma) natural levees, back swamps, and coastal swamps. This scenario allows for the measured evolution of angiosperms in time and space synthesizing changes in the physical environment with concomitant changes in the biological environment. This view of angiosperm radiation in three phases reconciles previous scenarios based on the North American record. The Cretaceous plant record that can be observed in Europe is exceptional in many ways. (i) Angiosperms are well preserved from the Barremian to the Maastrichtian (ca. 65 Ma). (ii) Deposits are well constrained and dated stratigraphically. (iii) They encompass a full range of environments. (iv) European paleobotany provides many detailed studies of Cretaceous floras for analysis. These factors make a robust dataset for the study of angiosperm evolution from the Barremian to the Campanian that can be traced through various ecosystems and related to other plant groups occupying the same niches. PMID:23213256

  20. Cretaceous stratigraphy and biostratigraphy, Sierra Blanca basin, southeastern New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Lucas, S.G. ); Anderson, O.R. )

    1994-03-01

    The Sierra Blanca basin of Otero and Lincoln counties, New Mexico contains a Lower (upper Albian)-Upper (Santonian) Cretaceous section of marine and nonmarine strata as much as 700 m thick which represent the upper part of a regressive cycle followed by two transgressive-regressive deposition cycles. The lower 55 m of the Cretaceous section are the same tripartite Dakota Group units recognized in Guadalupe and San Miguel counties: basal Mesa Rica Sandstone (late Albian), medial Pajarito formation (late Albian) and upper Romeroville sandstone (earliest Cenomanian). The Mesa Rica and Pajarito represent a regression and are overlain disconformably by the transgressive Romeroville sandstone. Overlying transgressive marine clastics and minor carbonates of the Mancos Shale are as much as 73 m thick and include the early Turonian Greenhorn Limestone. The overlying Tres Hermanos formation (up to 91 m thick) consists of the (ascending order) Atarque sandstone and the Carthage and Fite Ranch sandstone members. These strata represent a mid-Turonian regression in response to regional tectonism (Atarque and Carthage), followed by a transgression (Fite Ranch sandstone) that ended in the deposition of the D-Cross Tongue of the Mancos Shale and Fort Hays Member of the Niobrara Formation during the late Turonian. The subsequent regression began with the Coniacian Gallup Sandstone (55 m) followed by coal-bearing Crevasse Canyon Formation (up to 244 m thick). The Coniacian-Santonian Crevasse Canyon Formation, the youngest Cretaceous unit in the basin, is disconformably overlain by middle Eocene conglomerates and red-bed siliciclastics of the Cub Mountain formation. Dakota Group age determinations in the Sierra Blanca basin are those of well-dated sections to the north, but ammonites and inoceramid bivalves from the Sierra Blanca basin provide precise age control for Cenomanian-Santonian marine and marginal marine strata and palynology and megafossil plants for nonmarine strata.

  1. Late Cretaceous tectonic framework of the Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Zhenhan; Barosh, Patrick J.; Ye, Peisheng; Hu, Daogong

    2015-12-01

    New research, coupled with previous data, reveals the Late Cretaceous paleo-geography, and related paleo-tectonic movement of the Tibetan Plateau. A vast ocean, the Neo-Tethys Ocean, perhaps as wide as ∼7000 km, existed between the Indian and Eurasian Continental Plates in the early Late Cretaceous. In addition, a Himalaya Marginal Sea lay along the border of the Indian Plate and other marginal seas were present to the north in both the southern Lhasa and southwestern Tarim Blocks. Northward subduction of the Neo-Tethys Oceanic Plate along the Yalung-Zangbu Suture closed most of the ocean and led to intensive thrusting, tight folding, magmatic plutonism and volcanic eruptions in the central plateau to the north. A magmatic arc up to 500 km wide formed across the southern margin of the continental plate in central Tibet and its varying granitic composition appears to reflect the depth to the subducted plate and define its geometry. A series of large, chiefly north-dipping thrust systems also developed across central Tibet. These include thrusts along the Yalung-Zangbu and Bangong-Nujiang Sutures, the North Gangdese and North Lhasa Thrusts in the Lhasa Block, the Qiangtang and North Tangula Thrusts in the Qiangtang block, the Hoh-Xil and Bayan Har Thrusts in the Hoh-Xil Block, as well as the sinistral-slip South Kunlun and Altyn Tagh Faults in northern Tibet. Uplifts formed above the hanging walls of the major thrusts and their eroded debris formed thick red-beds in basins below them. The central Tibetan Plateau maintained a low elevation and coastal vegetation was dominant during the Late Cretaceous.

  2. Gulf Coast stratigraphic traps in the Lower Cretaceous carbonates

    SciTech Connect

    Sams, R.H.

    1981-09-01

    Prolific oil and gas production is being obtained from carbonate patch reef reservoirs within Lower Cretaceous formations along the Gulf Coast from Florida to Mexico. Many of these reservoirs are trapped stratigraphically where facies changes within a formation or patch reef unit establish an up-dip permeability barrier. Illustrations of such traps are given from the literature for oil and gas fields in Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, and E. Texas. A geologic model is presented which provides the explorationist with an actual drilling target suitable to a multiple well exploratory program. 18 references.

  3. Diagenesis and porosity evolution of upper Cretaceous dolomites, northern Egypt

    SciTech Connect

    Holail, H.M.; Lohmann, K.C.

    1988-08-01

    Porosity patterns in the Upper Cretaceous marine carbonate sequence of northern Egypt record a complex history of diagenesis in marine, hypersaline, and meteoric waters. Depositional facies and fabrics suggest an overall upward-shallowing sequence which, in turn, is bounded above by a major pre-middle Eocene unconformity. Associated with this unconformity, subaerial exposure resulted in a regional influx of meteoric waters. In this context, analysis of the paragenetic relationships and geochemical character of diagenetic phases has allowed for unique determination of the timing and environments of porosity evolution within this sequence.

  4. Revision of the Upper Cretaceous rudists from northwestern Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Philip, Jean; Jaillard, Etienne

    2004-09-01

    Revision of the Upper Cretaceous rudists of northwestern Peru has led to new discoveries and enabled the specification of their taxonomy and stratigraphic locations. Different species have been identified: Biradiolites cf. jamaicensis Trechmann 1924, Radiolites cf. macroplicatus Whitfield 1897, Praebarrettia sparcilirata (Whitfield, 1897) of Late Campanian age, and Macgillavryia nicholasi (Whitfield, 1897) of Middle-Late Maastrichtian age. During the Campanian and Maastrichtian, rudists of Peru show paleobiogeographic affinities with those of the Mexican and Caribbean domains. A paleogeographic route for rudist migrations may have existed at that time along the Caribbean arc and the Curaçao-Ecuador coastline.

  5. Ignition of global wildfires at the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Melosh, H. J.; Schneider, N. M.; Zahnle, K. J.; Latham, D.

    1990-01-01

    The recent discovery of an apparently global soot layer at the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary indicates that global wildfires were somehow ignited by the impact of a comet or asteroid. It is shown here that the thermal radiation produced by the ballistic reentry of ejecta condensed from the vapor plume of the impact could have increased the global radiation flux by factors of 50 to 150 times the solar input for periods ranging from one to several hours. This great increase in thermal radiation may have been responsible for the ignition of global wildfires, as well as having deleterious effects on unprotected animal life.

  6. Proximal Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary impact deposits in the Caribbean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hildebrand, Alan R.; Boynton, Willam V.

    1990-01-01

    Trace element, isotopic, and mineralogic studies indicate that the proposed impact at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary occurred in an ocean basin, although a minor component of continental material is required. The size and abundance of shocked minerals and the restricted geographic occurrence of the ejecta layer and impact-wave deposits suggest an impact between the Americas. Coarse boundary sediments at sites 151 and 153 in the Colombian Basin and 5- to 450-meter-thick boundary sediments in Cuba may be deposits of a giant wave produced by a nearby oceanic impact.

  7. Formation evaluation in the Texas Cretaceous chalk trend

    SciTech Connect

    Frost, E. Jr.; Stedman, D.; Fertl, W.H.

    1982-06-01

    Skilled formation evaluation is essential to economic well completions in the Cretaceous carbonate trend of South and Central Texas. The Austin chalk and Buda lime wells within this trend are known for high initial production rates followed by rapid production decline probably due to completion in zones of insufficient porosity and permeability. Therefore, the proper use of geophysical wireline data to locate fractures and determine fracture quality and hydrocarbon potential prior to setting casing is an essential element in evaluating the economics of any given well. This work details current successful evaluation procedures utilized in the trend. 11 refs.

  8. Southern hemisphere origin of the Cretaceous Laytonville Limestone of California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tarduno, J.A.; McWilliams, M.; Sliter, W.V.; Cook, H.E.; Blake, M.C., Jr.; Premoli-Silva, I.

    1986-01-01

    New paleomagnetic, paleontologic, and stratigraphic data from outcrops of the Laytonville Limestone (101 to 88 million years old) support a Southern Hemisphere orgin. A paleomagnetic megaconglomerate test is statistically significant and suggests magnetization at 14?? ?? 5?? south, predating Late Cretaceous to Eocene (70 to 50 million years ago) accretion. Rapid Kula plate movement or the existence and demise of a now vanished oceanic plate (or both) are required to accommodate the greater than 50?? of poleward displacement implied by the paleomagnetic data. This rapid motion brings into question the validity of a "speed limit" for absolute plate velocity based on present-day plate motions.

  9. One hundred million year old ergot: psychotropic compounds in the Cretaceous?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A fungal sclerotium similar to sclerotia of the genus Claviceps, commonly known as ergot, was found infecting a grass kernel in Early Cretaceous Myanmar amber. This represents the first fossil record of ergot dating as far back as the Cretaceous period. The fungus, described as Palaeoclaviceps para...

  10. Soft-sediment deformation structures interpreted as seismites in the uppermost Aptian to lowermost Albian transgressive deposits of the Chihuahua basin (Mexico)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanc, E. J.-P.; Blanc-Alétru, M.-C.; Mojon, P.-O.

    Several levels of soft-sediment deformation structures (s.-s.d.s.) cut by synsedimentary normal faults have been observed in the transition beds between the ``Las Vigas'' and ``La Virgen'' formations (Cretaceous) in the northeastern part of the Chihuahua basin in Mexico. These structures consisted of four kinds of motifs (floating breccias, flame-like structures, large pillow structures, and wavy structures). They are restricted to five ``stratigraphic'' levels (Σ1-Σ5) and surrounded by undeformed beds in fluvio-lacustrine and tidal deposits and can be traced over a distance of several hundred meters. This deformation is interpreted to have resulted from the combined effects of liquidization and shear stress in soft-sediments due to local earthquakes in the area which could have been generated during the rifting stage of the Chihuahua basin. New constraints placed on the age of the ``Las Vigas'' Formation (bracketed by Late Aptian charophytes at the bottom and colomiellids of late Aptian to earliest Albian age at the top) suggest that this synrift tectonism lasted at least until the end of the Aptian.

  11. Plant microfossil record of the terminal Cretaceous event in the western United States and Canada

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nichols, D. J.; Fleming, R. F.

    1988-01-01

    Plant microfossils, principally pollen grains and spores produced by land plants, provide an excellent record of the terminal Cretaceous event in nonmarine environments. The record indicates regional devastation of the latest Cretaceous vegetation with the extinction of many groups, followed by a recolonization of the earliest Tertiary land surface, and development of a permanently changed land flora. The regional variations in depositional environments, plant communities, and paleoclimates provide insight into the nature and effects of the event, which were short-lived but profound. The plant microfossil data support the hypothesis that an abruptly initiated, major ecological crisis occurred at the end of the Cretaceous. Disruption of the Late Cretaceous flora ultimately contributred to the rise of modern vegetation. The plant microfossils together with geochemical and mineralogical data are consistent with an extraterrestrial impact having been the cause of the terminal Cretaceous event.

  12. New fossil ants in French Cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perrichot, Vincent; Nel, André; Néraudeau, Didier; Lacau, Sébastien; Guyot, Thierry

    2008-02-01

    Recent studies on the ant phylogeny are mainly based on the molecular analyses of extant subfamilies and do not include the extinct, only Cretaceous subfamily Sphecomyrminae. However, the latter is of major importance for ant relationships, as it is considered the most basal subfamily. Therefore, each new discovery of a Mesozoic ant is of high interest for improving our understanding of their early history and basal relationships. In this paper, a new sphecomyrmine ant, allied to the Burmese amber genus Haidomyrmex, is described from mid-Cretaceous amber of France as Haidomyrmodes mammuthus gen. and sp. n. The diagnosis of the tribe Haidomyrmecini is emended based on the new type material, which includes a gyne (alate female) and two incomplete workers. The genus Sphecomyrmodes, hitherto known by a single species from Burmese amber, is also reported and a new species described as S. occidentalis sp. n. after two workers remarkably preserved in a single piece of Early Cenomanian French amber. The new fossils provide additional information on early ant diversity and relationships and demonstrate that the monophyly of the Sphecomyrminae, as currently defined, is still weakly supported.

  13. Evidence for global cooling in the Late Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linnert, Christian; Robinson, Stuart A.; Lees, Jackie A.; Bown, Paul R.; Pérez-Rodríguez, Irene; Petrizzo, Maria Rose; Falzoni, Francesca; Littler, Kate; Arz, José Antonio; Russell, Ernest E.

    2014-06-01

    The Late Cretaceous ‘greenhouse’ world witnessed a transition from one of the warmest climates of the past 140 million years to cooler conditions, yet still without significant continental ice. Low-latitude sea surface temperature (SST) records are a vital piece of evidence required to unravel the cause of Late Cretaceous cooling, but high-quality data remain illusive. Here, using an organic geochemical palaeothermometer (TEX86), we present a record of SSTs for the Campanian-Maastrichtian interval (~83-66 Ma) from hemipelagic sediments deposited on the western North Atlantic shelf. Our record reveals that the North Atlantic at 35 °N was relatively warm in the earliest Campanian, with maximum SSTs of ~35 °C, but experienced significant cooling (~7 °C) after this to <~28 °C during the Maastrichtian. The overall stratigraphic trend is remarkably similar to records of high-latitude SSTs and bottom-water temperatures, suggesting that the cooling pattern was global rather than regional and, therefore, driven predominantly by declining atmospheric pCO2 levels.

  14. Debris-carrying camouflage among diverse lineages of Cretaceous insects.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bo; Xia, Fangyuan; Engel, Michael S; Perrichot, Vincent; Shi, Gongle; Zhang, Haichun; Chen, Jun; Jarzembowski, Edmund A; Wappler, Torsten; Rust, Jes

    2016-06-01

    Insects have evolved diverse methods of camouflage that have played an important role in their evolutionary success. Debris-carrying, a behavior of actively harvesting and carrying exogenous materials, is among the most fascinating and complex behaviors because it requires not only an ability to recognize, collect, and carry materials but also evolutionary adaptations in related morphological characteristics. However, the fossil record of such behavior is extremely scarce, and only a single Mesozoic example from Spanish amber has been recorded; therefore, little is known about the early evolution of this complicated behavior and its underlying anatomy. We report a diverse insect assemblage of exceptionally preserved debris carriers from Cretaceous Burmese, French, and Lebanese ambers, including the earliest known chrysopoid larvae (green lacewings), myrmeleontoid larvae (split-footed lacewings and owlflies), and reduviids (assassin bugs). These ancient insects used a variety of debris material, including insect exoskeletons, sand grains, soil dust, leaf trichomes of gleicheniacean ferns, wood fibers, and other vegetal debris. They convergently evolved their debris-carrying behavior through multiple pathways, which expressed a high degree of evolutionary plasticity. We demonstrate that the behavioral repertoire, which is associated with considerable morphological adaptations, was already widespread among insects by at least the Mid-Cretaceous. Together with the previously known Spanish specimen, these fossils are the oldest direct evidence of camouflaging behavior in the fossil record. Our findings provide a novel insight into early evolution of camouflage in insects and ancient ecological associations among plants and insects. PMID:27386568

  15. New palaeointensity results from Cretaceous basalt of Inner Mongolia, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xixi; Riisager, Peter; Riisager, Janna; Draeger, Ulrike; Coe, Robert S.; Zheng, Zhong

    2004-02-01

    We present new Thellier-Thellier palaeointensity results from three cooling units (32 samples) of Inner Mongolia lava flows (91.7 Ma) emplaced during the Cretaceous Normal Superchron (CNS). Based on rock-magnetic and microscopy observations the magneto-mineralogy of all samples is determined to be primary and unaltered high-Ti titanomagnetite. Accepted palaeointensity determinations, obtained in the 80-200 °C temperature interval, are of good technical quality with positive standard partial thermoremanent magnetisation (pTRM) checks and pTRM-tail checks. Obtained palaeointensity estimates range from 14.7 to 28.0 μT, with virtual axial dipole moments (VADM) of 2.4 to 4.6 (× 10 22 Am 2). The data agree well with recently published results from the same region and, combining the two datasets, we obtain independent estimates from six different cooling units yielding a time-averaged VADM of 3.2 ± 1.6 (× 10 22 Am 2). These data suggest a relatively low dipole moment towards the end of the Cretaceous Normal Superchron.

  16. Late Cretaceous multicolored shales and phosphatic sedimentary rocks in Egypt

    SciTech Connect

    Glenn, C.R.; Garrison, R.E.; Arthur, M.A.

    1983-03-01

    Upper Cretaceous transitional fluvial to marine variegated shale (upper Nubia Formation) and the fully marine Duwi (phosphate) Formation occur as thin, widespread, shallow-marine deposits in an east-west-trending belt spanning the lower-middle latitudes of Egypt. On a larger scale, the phosphoritic rocks in Egypt represent but a small portion of a laterally extensive Middle Eastern-North African phosphogenic province of Upper Cretaceous-Lower Tertiary age that accounts for accumulation of minable marine phosphate in excess of 70 billion tons. Phosphorites, porcelanites/cherts, organic carbon-rich shales, glauconitic sandstones, and bioclastic and fine-grained carbonate rocks variously reflect major hemipelagic and shallow-water carbonate sedimentation. Biosiliceous hemipelagic deposits, now diagenetically altered to procelanite and chert, reflect low energy depositional conditions that were periodically interrupted by high energy, possibly storm-induced currents and/or down-slope redeposition. Both dark shales and porcelanites locally contain abundant organic matter and are commonly finely laminated. Porcelanites and black shales are phosphatic, containing phosphatic grains identical, morphologically and chemically, to those found in associated phosphorites, and are probably the source from which the phosphorites were derived. The organic carbon-rich shales of the Duwi Formation appear to be quite laterally extensive and may, depending on thermal maturity, represent potential hydrocarbon source rocks in other portions of the region (e.g., Western Desert, Gulf of Suez), where they are more deeply buried.

  17. Late Cretaceous Aquatic Plant World in Patagonia, Argentina

    PubMed Central

    Cúneo, N. Rubén; Gandolfo, María A.; Zamaloa, María C.; Hermsen, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    In this contribution, we describe latest Cretaceous aquatic plant communities from the La Colonia Formation, Patagonia, Argentina, based on their taxonomic components and paleoecological attributes. The La Colonia Formation is a geological unit deposited during a Maastrichtian-Danian transgressive episode of the South Atlantic Ocean. This event resulted in the deposition of a series of fine-grained sediments associated with lagoon systems occurring along irregular coastal plains in northern Patagonia. These deposits preserved a diverse biota, including aquatic and terrestrial plants and animals. The aquatic macrophytes can be broadly divided into two groups: free-floating and rooted, the latter with emergent or floating leaves. Free-floating macrophytes include ferns in Salviniaceae (Azolla and Paleoazolla) and a monocot (Araceae). Floating microphytes include green algae (Botryoccocus, Pediastrum and Zygnemataceae). Among the rooted components, marsileaceous water ferns (including Regnellidium and an extinct form) and the eudicot angiosperm Nelumbo (Nelumbonaceae) are the dominant groups. Terrestrial plants occurring in the vegetation surrounding the lagoons include monocots (palms and Typhaceae), ferns with affinities to Dicksoniaceae, conifers, and dicots. A reconstruction of the aquatic plant paleocommuniy is provided based on the distribution of the fossils along a freshwater horizon within the La Colonia Formation. This contribution constitutes the first reconstruction of a Cretaceous aquatic habitat for southern South America. PMID:25148081

  18. Extreme Morphogenesis and Ecological Specialization among Cretaceous Basal Ants.

    PubMed

    Perrichot, Vincent; Wang, Bo; Engel, Michael S

    2016-06-01

    Ants comprise one lineage of the triumvirate of eusocial insects and experienced their early diversification within the Cretaceous [1-9]. Their ecological success is generally attributed to their remarkable social behavior. Not all ants cooperate in social hunting, however, and some of the most effective predatory ants are solitary hunters with powerful trap jaws [10]. Recent evolutionary studies predict that the early branching lineages of extant ants formed small colonies of ground-dwelling, solitary specialist predators [2, 5, 7, 11, 12], while some Cretaceous fossils suggest group recruitment and socially advanced behavior among stem-group ants [9]. We describe a trap-jaw ant from 99 million-year-old Burmese amber with head structures that presumably functioned as a highly specialized trap for large-bodied prey. These are a cephalic horn resulting from an extreme modification of the clypeus hitherto unseen among living and extinct ants and scythe-like mandibles that extend high above the head, both demonstrating the presence of exaggerated morphogenesis early among stem-group ants. The new ant belongs to the Haidomyrmecini, possibly the earliest ant lineage [9], and together these trap-jaw ants suggest that at least some of the earliest Formicidae were solitary specialist predators. With their peculiar adaptations, haidomyrmecines had a refined ecology shortly following the advent of ants. PMID:27238278

  19. A eudicot from the Early Cretaceous of China.

    PubMed

    Sun, Ge; Dilcher, David L; Wang, Hongshan; Chen, Zhiduan

    2011-03-31

    The current molecular systematics of angiosperms recognizes the basal angiosperms and five major angiosperm lineages: the Chloranthaceae, the magnoliids, the monocots, Ceratophyllum and the eudicots, which consist of the basal eudicots and the core eudicots. The eudicots form the majority of the angiosperms in the world today. The flowering plants are of exceptional evolutionary interest because of their diversity of over 250,000 species and their abundance as the dominant vegetation in most terrestrial ecosystems, but little is known of their very early history. In this report we document an early presence of eudicots during the Early Cretaceous Period. Diagnostic characters of the eudicot fossil Leefructus gen. nov. include simple and deeply trilobate leaves clustered at the nodes in threes or fours, basal palinactinodromous primary venation, pinnate secondary venation, and a long axillary reproductive axis terminating in a flattened receptacle bearing five long, narrow pseudo-syncarpous carpels. These morphological characters suggest that its affinities are with the Ranunculaceae, a basal eudicot family. The fossil co-occurs with Archaefructus sinensis and Hyrcantha decussata whereas Archaefructus liaoningensis comes from more ancient sediments. Multiple radiometric dates of the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation place the bed yielding this fossil at 122.6-125.8 million years old. The earliest fossil records of eudicots are 127 to 125 million years old, on the basis of pollen. Thus, Leefructus gen. nov. suggests that the basal eudicots were already present and diverse by the latest Barremian and earliest Aptian. PMID:21455178

  20. Cretaceous origin and repeated tertiary diversification of the redefined butterflies.

    PubMed

    Heikkilä, Maria; Kaila, Lauri; Mutanen, Marko; Peña, Carlos; Wahlberg, Niklas

    2012-03-22

    Although the taxonomy of the ca 18 000 species of butterflies and skippers is well known, the family-level relationships are still debated. Here, we present, to our knowledge, the most comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of the superfamilies Papilionoidea, Hesperioidea and Hedyloidea to date based on morphological and molecular data. We reconstructed their phylogenetic relationships using parsimony and Bayesian approaches. We estimated times and rates of diversification along lineages in order to reconstruct their evolutionary history. Our results suggest that the butterflies, as traditionally understood, are paraphyletic, with Papilionidae being the sister-group to Hesperioidea, Hedyloidea and all other butterflies. Hence, the families in the current three superfamilies should be placed in a single superfamily Papilionoidea. In addition, we find that Hedylidae is sister to Hesperiidae, and this novel relationship is supported by two morphological characters. The families diverged in the Early Cretaceous but diversified after the Cretaceous-Palaeogene event. The diversification of butterflies is characterized by a slow speciation rate in the lineage leading to Baronia brevicornis, a period of stasis by the skippers after divergence and a burst of diversification in the lineages leading to Nymphalidae, Riodinidae and Lycaenidae. PMID:21920981

  1. Late cretaceous aquatic plant world in Patagonia, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Cúneo, N Rubén; Gandolfo, María A; Zamaloa, María C; Hermsen, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    In this contribution, we describe latest Cretaceous aquatic plant communities from the La Colonia Formation, Patagonia, Argentina, based on their taxonomic components and paleoecological attributes. The La Colonia Formation is a geological unit deposited during a Maastrichtian-Danian transgressive episode of the South Atlantic Ocean. This event resulted in the deposition of a series of fine-grained sediments associated with lagoon systems occurring along irregular coastal plains in northern Patagonia. These deposits preserved a diverse biota, including aquatic and terrestrial plants and animals. The aquatic macrophytes can be broadly divided into two groups: free-floating and rooted, the latter with emergent or floating leaves. Free-floating macrophytes include ferns in Salviniaceae (Azolla and Paleoazolla) and a monocot (Araceae). Floating microphytes include green algae (Botryoccocus, Pediastrum and Zygnemataceae). Among the rooted components, marsileaceous water ferns (including Regnellidium and an extinct form) and the eudicot angiosperm Nelumbo (Nelumbonaceae) are the dominant groups. Terrestrial plants occurring in the vegetation surrounding the lagoons include monocots (palms and Typhaceae), ferns with affinities to Dicksoniaceae, conifers, and dicots. A reconstruction of the aquatic plant paleocommuniy is provided based on the distribution of the fossils along a freshwater horizon within the La Colonia Formation. This contribution constitutes the first reconstruction of a Cretaceous aquatic habitat for southern South America. PMID:25148081

  2. Microbial Cretaceous park: biodiversity of microbial fossils entrapped in amber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martín-González, Ana; Wierzchos, Jacek; Gutiérrez, Juan C.; Alonso, Jesús; Ascaso, Carmen

    2009-05-01

    Microorganisms are the most ancient cells on this planet and they include key phyla for understanding cell evolution and Earth history, but, unfortunately, their microbial records are scarce. Here, we present a critical review of fossilized prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms entrapped in Cretaceous ambers (but not exclusively from this geological period) obtained from deposits worldwide. Microbiota in ambers are rather diverse and include bacteria, fungi, and protists. We comment on the most important microbial records from the last 25 years, although it is not an exhaustive bibliographic compilation. The most frequently reported eukaryotic microfossils are shells of amoebae and protists with a cell wall or a complex cortex. Likewise, diverse dormant stages (palmeloid forms, resting cysts, spores, etc.) are abundant in ambers. Besides, viral and protist pathogens have been identified inside insects entrapped in amber. The situation regarding filamentous bacteria and fungi is quite confusing because in some cases, the same record was identified consecutively as a member of these phylogenetically distant groups. To avoid these identification errors in the future, we propose to apply a more resolute microscopic and analytical method in amber studies. Also, we discuss the most recent findings about ancient DNA repair and bacterial survival in remote substrates, which support the real possibility of ancient DNA amplification and bacterial resuscitation from Cretaceous resins.

  3. A reappraisal of Polyptychodon (Plesiosauria) from the Cretaceous of England

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Pliosauridae is a globally distributed clade of aquatic predatory amniotes whose fossil record spans from the Lower Jurassic to the Upper Cretaceous. However, the knowledge of pliosaurid interrelationships remains limited. In part, this is a consequence of a few key taxa awaiting detailed reassessment. Among them, the taxon Polyptychodon is of special importance. It was established on isolated teeth from the mid-Cretaceous strata of East and South East England and subsequently associated with numerous finds of near-cosmopolitan distribution. Here the taxon is reassessed based on the original dental material from England, with special focus on a large collection of late Albian material from the Cambridge Greensand near Cambridge. The dental material is reviewed here from historical and stratigraphic perspective, described in detail, and discussed in terms of its diagnostic nature. The considerable morphological variability observed in the teeth attributed to Polyptychodon, together with a wide stratigraphic range of the ascribed material, possibly exceeding 35 Ma (early Aptian to ?middle Santonian), suggests that the taxon is based on a multispecies assemblage, possibly incorporating members of different plesiosaur clades. Due to the absence of any autapomorphic characters or unique character combinations in the original material, Polyptychodon interruptus, the type species of Polyptychodon, is considered nomen dubium. From a global perspective, Polyptychodon is viewed as a wastebasket taxon whose material originating from different localities should be reconsidered separately. PMID:27190712

  4. Occurrences of Chert in Jurassic-Cretaceous Calciturbidites (SW Turkey)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gül, Murat

    2015-10-01

    The Lycian Nappes, containing ophiolite and sedimentary rocks sequences, crop out in the southwest Turkey. The Tavas Nappe is a part of the Lycian Nappes. It includes the Lower Jurassic-Upper Cretaceous calciturbidites. Chert occurrences were observed in the lower part of this calciturbidite. These cherts can be classified on the basis of length, internal structure and host rock. Chert bands are 3.20-35.0min length and 7.0-35.0 cm thick. Chert lenses are 5.0-175.0 cm in length and 1.0-33.0 cm thick. According to its internal structure, granular chert (bladedlarge equitant quartz minerals replaced the big calcite mineral of fossil shell) and porcelanious chert (microcrystalline silica replaced micrite) have been separated. Cherts are generally associated with calcarenite-calcirudite, the others with calcilutite. Micritic calcite patches of cherts point out an uncompleted silicification. The source of silica was dominantly quartz-rich, older, basal rocks and to a lesser extent radiolarians. The coarse-grained calciturbidites act as a way for silica transportation. Some calcite veins (formed during transportation and emplacement of nappes) cut both calciturbidites and cherts. Thus, chert occurrences evolved before emplacement of nappes (the latest Cretaceous-Late Miocene period) during the epigenetic phase.

  5. Major wildfires at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilmour, Iain; Wolbach, Wendy S.; Anders, Edward

    1989-01-01

    K-T boundary (KTB) clays from five sites are enriched in soot and charcoal by factors of 100-1000 over Cretaceous levels, apparently due to a global fire. The soot profile nearly coincides with the Ir profile, implying that the fire was triggered by the impact. Much or all of the fuel was biomass, as indicated by the presence of retene and by the C isotopic composition. The amount of elemental C at the KTB (0.012 g/sq cm) is very large, and requires either that most of the Cretaceous biomass burned down or that the soot yield was higher than in small fires. At undisturbed sites, soot correlates tightly with Ir, As, Sb, and Zn. Apparently soot and Ir-bearing ejecta particles coagulated in the stratosphere and then scavenged additional chalcophiles from the hydrosphere. In view of this coagulation, the K-T fire would only slightly prolong the period of darkness and cold caused by impact ejecta.

  6. New and revised maimetshid wasps from Cretaceous ambers (Hymenoptera, Maimetshidae)

    PubMed Central

    Perrichot, Vincent; Ortega-Blanco, Jaime; McKellar, Ryan C.; Delclòs, Xavier; Azar, Dany; Nel, André; Tafforeau, Paul; Engel, Michael S.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract New material of the wasp family Maimetshidae (Apocrita) is presented from four Cretaceous amber deposits – the Neocomian of Lebanon, the Early Albian of Spain, the latest Albian/earliest Cenomanian of France, and the Campanian of Canada. The new record from Canadian Cretaceous amber extends the temporal and paleogeographical range of the family. New material from France is assignable to Guyotemaimetsha enigmatica Perrichot et al. including the first females for the species, while a series of males and females from Spain are described and figured as Iberomaimetsha Ortega-Blanco, Perrichot & Engel, gen. n., with the two new species Iberomaimetsha rasnitsyni Ortega-Blanco, Perrichot & Engel, sp. n. and Iberomaimetsha nihtmara Ortega-Blanco, Delclòs & Engel, sp. n.; a single female from Lebanon is described and figured as Ahiromaimetsha najlae Perrichot, Azar, Nel & Engel, gen. et sp. n., and a single male from Canada is described and figured as Ahstemiam cellula McKellar & Engel, gen. et sp. n. The taxa are compared with other maimetshids, a key to genera and species is given, and brief comments made on the family. PMID:22259291

  7. Magnesioferrite from the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, Caravaca, Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bohor, Bruce F.; Foord, Eugene E.; Ganapathy, Ramachandran

    1986-12-01

    The results of an analysis of samples separated from the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary clay at Caravaca, Spain are presented. Magnetically fractionated samples were irradiated with thermal neutrons, and the element concentrations were determined by gamma-ray counting. The magnetic mineral separated from the basal layer of the K-T boundary is a spinel-type phase having the composition of magnesioferrite, and is high (about 29 ppb) in iridium. This spinel-type phase and others of the spinel group found in K-T boundary clays have been proposed to represent unaltered remnants of ejecta deposited from an earth-girdling dust cloud formed from the impact of an asteroid or other large bolide at the end of the Cretaceous period. Major element composition (high Cr and Ni) and trace element ratios of the analyzed samples indicate either an extraterrestrial or mantle source for the magnesioferrite. On the basis of the crystal morphology and general compositon of the grains, rapid crystallization at high temperature is indicated, most likely directly from a vapor phase or emanating cloud and in an environment of moderate oxygen fugacity.

  8. Evolutionary transition of dental formula in Late Cretaceous eutherian mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Averianov, Alexander O.; Archibald, J. David

    2015-10-01

    Kulbeckia kulbecke, stem placental mammal from the Late Cretaceous of Uzbekistan, shows a transitional stage of evolution in the dental formula from five to four premolars. A non-replaced dP3/dp3 may occur as individual variation. In other specimens, the lower premolars are crowded with no space for development of dp3. As is evident from the CT scanning of one juvenile specimen, the development of dp3 started in a late ontogenetic stage and was confined to the pulp cavity of the developing p2. This dp3 would have been resorbed in a later ontogenetic stage, as the roots of p2 formed. The initial stage of reduction of the third premolar can be traced to stem therians ( Juramaia and Eomaia), which have both dP3 and P3 present in the adult dentition. Further delay in the development of dP3/dp3 led to the loss of the permanent P3/p3 (a possible synapomorphy for Eutheria). The dP3/dp3 was present during most of the adult stages in the Late Cretaceous stem placentals Zhelestidae and Gypsonictops. This tooth is totally absent in basal taxa of Placentalia, which normally have at most four premolars.

  9. Debris-carrying camouflage among diverse lineages of Cretaceous insects

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bo; Xia, Fangyuan; Engel, Michael S.; Perrichot, Vincent; Shi, Gongle; Zhang, Haichun; Chen, Jun; Jarzembowski, Edmund A.; Wappler, Torsten; Rust, Jes

    2016-01-01

    Insects have evolved diverse methods of camouflage that have played an important role in their evolutionary success. Debris-carrying, a behavior of actively harvesting and carrying exogenous materials, is among the most fascinating and complex behaviors because it requires not only an ability to recognize, collect, and carry materials but also evolutionary adaptations in related morphological characteristics. However, the fossil record of such behavior is extremely scarce, and only a single Mesozoic example from Spanish amber has been recorded; therefore, little is known about the early evolution of this complicated behavior and its underlying anatomy. We report a diverse insect assemblage of exceptionally preserved debris carriers from Cretaceous Burmese, French, and Lebanese ambers, including the earliest known chrysopoid larvae (green lacewings), myrmeleontoid larvae (split-footed lacewings and owlflies), and reduviids (assassin bugs). These ancient insects used a variety of debris material, including insect exoskeletons, sand grains, soil dust, leaf trichomes of gleicheniacean ferns, wood fibers, and other vegetal debris. They convergently evolved their debris-carrying behavior through multiple pathways, which expressed a high degree of evolutionary plasticity. We demonstrate that the behavioral repertoire, which is associated with considerable morphological adaptations, was already widespread among insects by at least the Mid-Cretaceous. Together with the previously known Spanish specimen, these fossils are the oldest direct evidence of camouflaging behavior in the fossil record. Our findings provide a novel insight into early evolution of camouflage in insects and ancient ecological associations among plants and insects. PMID:27386568

  10. A reappraisal of Polyptychodon (Plesiosauria) from the Cretaceous of England.

    PubMed

    Madzia, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Pliosauridae is a globally distributed clade of aquatic predatory amniotes whose fossil record spans from the Lower Jurassic to the Upper Cretaceous. However, the knowledge of pliosaurid interrelationships remains limited. In part, this is a consequence of a few key taxa awaiting detailed reassessment. Among them, the taxon Polyptychodon is of special importance. It was established on isolated teeth from the mid-Cretaceous strata of East and South East England and subsequently associated with numerous finds of near-cosmopolitan distribution. Here the taxon is reassessed based on the original dental material from England, with special focus on a large collection of late Albian material from the Cambridge Greensand near Cambridge. The dental material is reviewed here from historical and stratigraphic perspective, described in detail, and discussed in terms of its diagnostic nature. The considerable morphological variability observed in the teeth attributed to Polyptychodon, together with a wide stratigraphic range of the ascribed material, possibly exceeding 35 Ma (early Aptian to ?middle Santonian), suggests that the taxon is based on a multispecies assemblage, possibly incorporating members of different plesiosaur clades. Due to the absence of any autapomorphic characters or unique character combinations in the original material, Polyptychodon interruptus, the type species of Polyptychodon, is considered nomen dubium. From a global perspective, Polyptychodon is viewed as a wastebasket taxon whose material originating from different localities should be reconsidered separately. PMID:27190712

  11. Testing Iberian kinematics at Jurassic-Cretaceous times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neres, M.; Miranda, J. M.; Font, E.

    2013-09-01

    reconstructions of Iberia at the Mesozoic are still a matter of debate. The incompatibility between kinematic models and paleomagnetic data older than 120 Ma is a major problem for which no cause has yet been determined. Here we use a new method to investigate the origin of this misfit. We solve the inverse problem of finding the Euler poles that fit paleomagnetic poles with the Global Apparent Polar Wander Path (GAPWP) and then test their implications on Iberian reconstructions. We show that Iberian poles from the Early Cretaceous (mean poles for 123 and 130 Ma) are incompatible with the GAPWP, bringing into question their validity. Contrarily, Late Jurassic data (mean pole at 151 Ma) are compatible with the GAPWP and, thus, can be considered reliable. Based on these results, we propose a new magnetic reconstruction of Iberia and surrounding plates at ~150 Ma (M22 anomaly). This work provides new constraints for the kinematic evolution of Iberia during Jurassic-Cretaceous. However, the development of a detailed and consensual model for the kinematic evolution of Iberia is dependent on the acquisition of new, high-quality paleomagnetic data and a reevaluation of seafloor magnetic anomalies.

  12. Evidence for global cooling in the Late Cretaceous

    PubMed Central

    Linnert, Christian; Robinson, Stuart A.; Lees, Jackie A.; Bown, Paul R.; Pérez-Rodríguez, Irene; Petrizzo, Maria Rose; Falzoni, Francesca; Littler, Kate; Arz, José Antonio; Russell, Ernest E.

    2014-01-01

    The Late Cretaceous ‘greenhouse’ world witnessed a transition from one of the warmest climates of the past 140 million years to cooler conditions, yet still without significant continental ice. Low-latitude sea surface temperature (SST) records are a vital piece of evidence required to unravel the cause of Late Cretaceous cooling, but high-quality data remain illusive. Here, using an organic geochemical palaeothermometer (TEX86), we present a record of SSTs for the Campanian–Maastrichtian interval (~83–66 Ma) from hemipelagic sediments deposited on the western North Atlantic shelf. Our record reveals that the North Atlantic at 35 °N was relatively warm in the earliest Campanian, with maximum SSTs of ~35 °C, but experienced significant cooling (~7 °C) after this to <~28 °C during the Maastrichtian. The overall stratigraphic trend is remarkably similar to records of high-latitude SSTs and bottom-water temperatures, suggesting that the cooling pattern was global rather than regional and, therefore, driven predominantly by declining atmospheric pCO2 levels. PMID:24937202

  13. Mountain Building Triggered Late Cretaceous North American Megaherbivore Dinosaur Radiation

    PubMed Central

    Gates, Terry A.; Prieto-Márquez, Albert; Zanno, Lindsay E.

    2012-01-01

    Prior studies of Mesozoic biodiversity document a diversity peak for dinosaur species in the Campanian stage of the Late Cretaceous, yet have failed to provide explicit causal mechanisms. We provide evidence that a marked increase in North American dinosaur biodiversity can be attributed to dynamic orogenic episodes within the Western Interior Basin (WIB). Detailed fossil occurrences document an association between the shift from Sevier-style, latitudinally arrayed basins to smaller Laramide-style, longitudinally arrayed basins and a well substantiated decreased geographic range/increased taxonomic diversity of megaherbivorous dinosaur species. Dispersal-vicariance analysis demonstrates that the nearly identical biogeographic histories of the megaherbivorous dinosaur clades Ceratopsidae and Hadrosauridae are attributable to rapid diversification events within restricted basins and that isolation events are contemporaneous with known tectonic activity in the region. SymmeTREE analysis indicates that megaherbivorous dinosaur clades exhibited significant variation in diversification rates throughout the Late Cretaceous. Phylogenetic divergence estimates of fossil clades offer a new lower boundary on Laramide surficial deformation that precedes estimates based on sedimentological data alone. PMID:22876302

  14. Cretaceous Arctic magmatism: Slab vs. plume? Or slab and plume?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gottlieb, E. S.; Miller, E. L.; Andronikov, A. V.; Brumley, K.; Mayer, L. A.; Mukasa, S. B.

    2010-12-01

    Tectonic models for the Cretaceous paleogeographic evolution of the Arctic Ocean and its adjacent landmasses propose that rifting in the Amerasia Basin (AB) began in Jura-Cretaceous time, accompanied by the development of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP). During the same timespan, deformation and slab-related magmatism, followed by intra-arc rifting, took place along the Pacific side of what was to become the Arctic Ocean. A compilation and comparison of the ages, characteristics and space-time variation of circum-Arctic magmatism allows for a better understanding of the role of Pacific margin versus Arctic-Atlantic plate tectonics and the role of plume-related magmatism in the origin of the Arctic Ocean. In Jura-Cretaceous time, an arc built upon older terranes overthrust the Arctic continental margins of North America and Eurasia, shedding debris into foreland basins in the Brooks Range, Alaska, across Chukotka, Russia, to the Lena Delta and New Siberian Islands region of the Russian Arctic. These syn-tectonic sediments have some common sources (e.g., ~250-300 Ma magmatic rocks) as determined by U-Pb detrital zircon geochronology. They are as young as Valanginian-Berriasian (~136 Ma, Gradstein et al., 2004) and place a lower limit on the age of formation of the AB. Subsequent intrusions of granitoid plutons, inferred to be ultimately slab-retreat related, form a belt along the far eastern Russian Arctic continental margin onto Seward Peninsula and have yielded a continuous succession of zircon U-Pb ages from ~137-95 Ma (n=28) and a younger suite ~91-82 Ma (n=16). All plutons dated were intruded in an extensional tectonic setting based on their relations to wall-rock deformation. Regional distribution of ages shows a southward migration of the locus of magmatism during Cretaceous time. Basaltic lavas as old as 130 Ma and as young as 80 Ma (40Ar/39Ar)) erupted across the Canadian Arctic Islands, Svalbard and Franz Josef Land and are associated with

  15. Cretaceous combined structure in eastern Sichuan Basin, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, P.; Liu, S.

    2009-12-01

    Eastern Sichuan Basin is confined by two thin-skinned fold-thrust belt, NW-trending Southern Daba Shan (Shan=Mountain) (SDB) in the northeast and NNE- or NE-trending Western XueFeng Shan (WXF) in the southeast, which constitute two convergent salients convex to the inner basin respectively. Although many factors can lead to the formation of fold-thrust belt salients, the eastern Sichuan salients would be attributed to the combined structure (firstly nominated by Chinese geologist, Li Siguang), which means the interaction of two structural belts in the same period. By field surveying and geological map interpreting, we found that WXF deformation began in Late Jurassic along the eastern side of structral belt, where the synclines cored by Upper-Middle Jurassic rock. The initial time of SDB deformation remains poorly determined, however our palaeocurrent data of Lower Cretaceous rock in adjecent foreland basin indicate the provenance from northeast or east. Hence we considered the two fold-thrust belt started interactive in Late Jurassic and mainly combined during Cretaceous. In Early Cretaceous, the front belt of WXF salient arrived near KaiXian where NEE-trending arc-shape folds converged with the NWW-trending arc-shape folds of SDB.The two salients shaped like an westward "open mouth", east of which EW-trending folds of two structural belts juxtaposed. Particularly in the middle belt of WXF (FengJie - WuFeng) the earlier NEE-trending folds were refolded by later NNE-trending folds. We interpret the NEE-trending folds as the front belt of earlier (maybe Late Jurassic) WXF salient. When the two combined fold belts propagated westward together, the original NNE-trending front belt of WXF constrained by the front belt of SDB and formed the curved fold trend lines convex to NNW. Then as WXF deformation continued but SDB gradually terminated, the consequent NNE-trending folds could not be curved and would superpose on the earlier NEE-trending folds.In Late Cretaceous

  16. Intracontinental deformation in southern Africa during the Late Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Roderick; Summerfield, Michael; Gleadow, Andrew; Gallagher, Kerry; Carter, Andrew; Beucher, Romain; Wildman, Mark

    2014-12-01

    Intracontinental deformation accommodated along major lithospheric scale shear zone systems and within associated extensional basins has been well documented within West, Central and East Africa during the Late Cretaceous. The nature of this deformation has been established by studies of the tectonic architecture of sedimentary basins preserved in this part of Africa. In southern Africa, where the post break-up history has been dominated by major erosion, little evidence for post-break-up tectonics has been preserved in the onshore geology. Here we present the results of 38 new apatite fission track analyses from the Damara region of northern Namibia and integrate these new data with our previous results that were focused on specific regions or sections only to comprehensively document the thermo-tectonic history of this region since continental break-up in the Early Cretaceous. The apatite fission track ages range from 449 ± 20 Ma to 59 ± 3 Ma, with mean confined track lengths between 14.61 ± 0.1 μm (SD 0.95 μm) to 10.83 ± 0.33 μm (SD 2.84 μm). The youngest ages (c. 80-60 Ma) yield the longest mean track lengths, and combined with their spatial distribution, indicate major cooling during the latest Cretaceous. A simple numerical thermal model is used to demonstrate that this cooling is consistent with the combined effects of heating caused by magmatic underplating, related to the Paraná-Etendeka continental flood volcanism associated with rifting and the opening of the South Atlantic, and enhanced erosion caused by major reactivation of major lithospheric structures within southern Africa during a key period of plate kinematic change that occurred in the South Atlantic and SW Indian ocean basins between 87 and 56 Ma. This phase of intraplate tectonism in northern Namibia, focused in discrete structurally defined zones, is coeval with similar phases elsewhere in Africa and suggests some form of trans-continental linkage between these lithospheric zones.

  17. Evolution and palaeoenvironment of the Bauru Basin (Upper Cretaceous, Brazil)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandes, Luiz Alberto; Magalhães Ribeiro, Claudia Maria

    2015-08-01

    The Bauru Basin was one of the great Cretaceous desert basins of the world, evolved in arid zone called Southern Hot Arid Belt. Its paleobiological record consists mainly of dinosaurs, crocodiles and turtles. The Bauru Basin is an extensive region of the South American continent that includes parts of the southeast and south of Brazil, covering an area of 370,000 km2. It is an interior continental basin that developed as a result of subsidence of the central-southern part of the South-American Platform during the Late Cretaceous (Coniacian-Maastrichtian). This sag basin is filled by a sandy siliciclastic sequence with a preserved maximum thickness of 480 m, deposited in semiarid to desert conditions. Its basement consists of volcanic rocks (mainly basalts) of the Lower Cretaceous (Hauterivian) Serra Geral basalt flows, of the Paraná-Etendeka Continental Flood Basalt Province. The sag basin was filled by an essentially siliciclastic psammitic sequence. In lithostratigraphic terms the sequence consists of the Caiuá and Bauru groups. The northern and northeastern edges of the basin provide a record of more proximal original deposits, such as associations of conglomeratic sand facies from alluvial fans, lakes, and intertwined distributary river systems. The progressive basin filling led to the burial of the basaltic substrate by extensive blanket sand sheets, associated with deposits of small dunes and small shallow lakes that retained mud (such as loess). Also in this intermediate context between the edges (more humid) and the interior (dry), wide sand sheet areas crossed by unconfined desert rivers (wadis) occurred. In the central axis of the elliptical basin a regional drainage system formed, flowing from northeast to southwest between the edges of the basin and the hot and dry inner periphery of the Caiuá desert (southwest). Life in the Bauru Basin flourished most in the areas with the greatest water availability, in which dinosaurs, crocodiles, turtles, fish

  18. The Late Cretaceous hydrological cycle very different from today

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Floegel, S.; Hay, W. W.; Deconto, R. M.

    2003-04-01

    Numeric modeling of the climate system at the Cenomanian/Turonian boundary has produced surprising results concerning the hydrological cycle during the Late Cretaceous. Today; the global average of subsurface runoff (groundwater, 13.320 km3) to surface runoff (43.790 km3) is about 30%. Globally, about 2/3 of the total river discharge entering the sea today is from surface runoff, much of it originating as snowmelt, and 1/3 is from groundwater, The present day data show similar proportions of surface runoff/subsurface runoff for different continents, ~4:1 in Aus-tralia, ~3:1 in Europe, Africa, and South America, and lower on other continents. The amount and seasonal distribution of surface runoff drives both mechanical erosion and terrigenous bio-logical activity. The amount and distribution of subsurface runoff is of importance for chemical erosion and subsurface dissolution. GENESIS (v.2.0) paleoclimate simulations of the Late Cretaceous, show a relation opposite to that of present, with subsurface runoff dominating over surface runoff both globally and region-ally. Globally, the simulations produce an annual mean value for subsurface runoff about 6 times higher than that of the surface runoff. Detailed examination of the data shows very large regional differences. The ratios of surface to subsurface runoff range from 1:2 (Sevier Highlands of west-ern North America) to 1:1200 (S-Asia). There are significant regional differences between the surface runoff and subsurface runoff, even at similar paleolatitudes. Not only does the total amount of water transported annually by these two mechanisms change dramatically, but their distribution during the course of a year is different from present. In addition to the effect of the different Cretaceous hydrology on rivers, low salinity, nutrient-rich groundwater discharge di-rectly into coastal waters could have had a significant impact on the local ecology along the margins of continents and islands. If atmospheric CO2 were

  19. An abelisaurid from the Late Cretaceous of Egypt: implications for theropod biogeography.

    PubMed

    Smith, Joshua B; Lamanna, Matthew C

    2006-05-01

    Recent paleogeographic scenarios postulate the isolation of continental Africa during the Late Cretaceous. The absence of abelisaurid theropods from Upper Cretaceous African strata was offered as support of hypothesized African isolation with the acknowledgement that the paucity of African abelisaurids may be mostly an issue of sampling. Here we report on a shed theropod tooth from the Upper Cretaceous (Maastrichtian, approximately 70 Ma) Duwi Formation of Egypt. The tooth was referred to the Malagasy abelisaurid "Megalosaurus" crenatissimus (=Majungasaurus crenatissimus) in 1921. A discriminant function analysis was run to test for morphological congruence between the Egyptian tooth and the dentitions of 24 theropod taxa. The analysis correctly classified 96.6% of the teeth in the sample and assigned the tooth to Majungasaurus. As current paleogeographic reconstructions posit Madagascar had attained its current position relative to Africa before the Late Cretaceous, it is unlikely that the Egyptian tooth actually pertains to Majungasaurus. Nevertheless, its classification as an abelisaurid supports its referral to the clade. This tooth thus constitutes defensible evidence of an abelisaurid from the post-Cenomanian Cretaceous of mainland Africa. Combined with recent discoveries of abelisaurids in Niger and Morocco, the result indicates that Abelisauridae was a diverse group in Africa during the Cretaceous, existing in multiple places for at least approximately 25 Ma and weakens support for hypotheses of an isolated Africa during the Late Cretaceous. PMID:16541232

  20. An abelisaurid from the Late Cretaceous of Egypt: implications for theropod biogeography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Joshua B.; Lamanna, Matthew C.

    2006-05-01

    Recent paleogeographic scenarios postulate the isolation of continental Africa during the Late Cretaceous. The absence of abelisaurid theropods from Upper Cretaceous African strata was offered as support of hypothesized African isolation with the acknowledgement that the paucity of African abelisaurids may be mostly an issue of sampling. Here we report on a shed theropod tooth from the Upper Cretaceous (Maastrichtian, ˜70 Ma) Duwi Formation of Egypt. The tooth was referred to the Malagasy abelisaurid “ Megalosaurus” crenatissimus (= Majungasaurus crenatissimus) in 1921. A discriminant function analysis was run to test for morphological congruence between the Egyptian tooth and the dentitions of 24 theropod taxa. The analysis correctly classified 96.6% of the teeth in the sample and assigned the tooth to Majungasaurus. As current paleogeographic reconstructions posit Madagascar had attained its current position relative to Africa before the Late Cretaceous, it is unlikely that the Egyptian tooth actually pertains to Majungasaurus. Nevertheless, its classification as an abelisaurid supports its referral to the clade. This tooth thus constitutes defensible evidence of an abelisaurid from the post-Cenomanian Cretaceous of mainland Africa. Combined with recent discoveries of abelisaurids in Niger and Morocco, the result indicates that Abelisauridae was a diverse group in Africa during the Cretaceous, existing in multiple places for at least ˜25 Ma and weakens support for hypotheses of an isolated Africa during the Late Cretaceous.

  1. Time-calibrated models support congruency between Cretaceous continental rifting and titanosaurian evolutionary history.

    PubMed

    Gorscak, Eric; O'Connor, Patrick M

    2016-04-01

    Recent model-based phylogenetic approaches have expanded upon the incorporation of extinct lineages and their respective temporal information for calibrating divergence date estimates. Here, model-based methods are explored to estimate divergence dates and ancestral ranges for titanosaurian sauropod dinosaurs, an extinct and globally distributed terrestrial clade that existed during the extensive Cretaceous supercontinental break-up. Our models estimate an Early Cretaceous (approx. 135 Ma) South American origin for Titanosauria. The estimated divergence dates are broadly congruent with Cretaceous geophysical models of supercontinental separation and subsequent continental isolation while obviating the invocation of continuous Late Cretaceous continental connections (e.g. ephemeral land bridges). Divergence dates for mid-Cretaceous African and South American sister lineages support semi-isolated subequatorial African faunas in concordance with the gradual northward separation between South America and Africa. Finally, Late Cretaceous Africa may have linked Laurasian lineages with their sister South American lineages, though the current Late Cretaceous African terrestrial fossil record remains meagre. PMID:27048465

  2. A Ceratopsian Dinosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of Western North America, and the Biogeography of Neoceratopsia

    PubMed Central

    Farke, Andrew A.; Maxwell, W. Desmond; Cifelli, Richard L.; Wedel, Mathew J.

    2014-01-01

    The fossil record for neoceratopsian (horned) dinosaurs in the Lower Cretaceous of North America primarily comprises isolated teeth and postcrania of limited taxonomic resolution, hampering previous efforts to reconstruct the early evolution of this group in North America. An associated cranium and lower jaw from the Cloverly Formation (?middle–late Albian, between 104 and 109 million years old) of southern Montana is designated as the holotype for Aquilops americanus gen. et sp. nov. Aquilops americanus is distinguished by several autapomorphies, including a strongly hooked rostral bone with a midline boss and an elongate and sharply pointed antorbital fossa. The skull in the only known specimen is comparatively small, measuring 84 mm between the tips of the rostral and jugal. The taxon is interpreted as a basal neoceratopsian closely related to Early Cretaceous Asian taxa, such as Liaoceratops and Auroraceratops. Biogeographically, A. americanus probably originated via a dispersal from Asia into North America; the exact route of this dispersal is ambiguous, although a Beringian rather than European route seems more likely in light of the absence of ceratopsians in the Early Cretaceous of Europe. Other amniote clades show similar biogeographic patterns, supporting an intercontinental migratory event between Asia and North America during the late Early Cretaceous. The temporal and geographic distribution of Upper Cretaceous neoceratopsians (leptoceratopsids and ceratopsoids) suggests at least intermittent connections between North America and Asia through the early Late Cretaceous, likely followed by an interval of isolation and finally reconnection during the latest Cretaceous. PMID:25494182

  3. Alisitos Formation calcareous facies - Early Cretaceous episode of tectonic calm

    SciTech Connect

    Suarez-Vidal, F.

    1986-04-01

    The Alisitos Formation (Aptian-Albian), shaped as a marine volcanic arc, crops out along the western side of Baja California bounding the Peninsula Range batholith. Lithologically, this formation is formed by volcanic breccias, porphyritic flows, biohermal limestones, and tuffaceous and pyroclastic sediments. The distribution of the different facies depends on the nature of volcanism and the distance from a volcanic center, although the presence of massive biohermal limestone indicates that in the Early Cretaceous (during tectonic episodes), the volcanic activity decreased to the level that the environmental conditions were favorable for the development of an organic barrier reef behind an island arc. Such conditions pertained south of the Agua Blanca fault and extended to El Arco, Baja California. Based on field observation and petrologic analysis in the Alisitos limestone, an attempt has been made to re-create the environmental condition in the Punta China and San Fernando, Baja California, sites.

  4. A new Cretaceous Metatherian mammal from Henan, China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Shuo; Du, Tianming

    2015-01-01

    We report a new deltatheroidan mammal from the Upper Cretaceous of Henna, China. The new taxon, Lotheridium mengi, is based on a nearly complete skull and associated lower jaws with full adult dentition. Deltatheroidans are known mostly from fragmentary specimens from Asia and North America. Previous views on deltatheroidan relationships were diverse, but recent studies favored their metatherian affinity. The new specimen represents the most complete skull known for deltatheroidans and provides additional evidence that deltatheroidans already had the distinctive metatherian dental formula and replacement pattern and several other derived metatherian features, supporting the metatherian status for this clade. The new species also indicates that deltatheroidan mammals were more diverse and had broader geographical distributions than previously thought. PMID:25893149

  5. An endoparasitoid Cretaceous fly and the evolution of parasitoidism.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qingqing; Zhang, Junfeng; Feng, Yitao; Zhang, Haichun; Wang, Bo

    2016-02-01

    Parasitoidism is a key innovation in insect evolution, and parasitoid insects, nowadays, play a significant role in structuring ecological communities. Despite their diversity and ecological impact, little is known about the early evolution and ecology of parasitoid insects, especially parasitoid true flies (Diptera). Here, we describe a bizarre fly, Zhenia xiai gen. et sp. nov., from Late Cretaceous Burmese amber (about 99 million years old) that represents the latest occurrence of the family Eremochaetidae. Z. xiai is an endoparasitoid insect as evidenced by a highly developed, hypodermic-like ovipositor formed by abdominal tergites VIII + IX that was used for injecting eggs into hosts and enlarged tridactylous claws supposedly for clasping hosts. Our results suggest that eremochaetids are among the earliest definite records of parasitoid insects. Our findings reveal an unexpected morphological specialization of flies and broaden our understanding of the evolution and diversity of ancient parasitoid insects. PMID:26715353

  6. Late Cretaceous terrestrial vegetation: A near-polar temperature curve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Totman Parrish, Judith; Spicer, Robert A.

    1988-01-01

    Quantitative estimates of terrestrial paleotemperatures near the North Pole were derived from the physiognomy of the vegetation, including leaf-margin analysis, from rocks of latest Albian and Late Cretaceous age of the North Slope of Alaska. During the latest Albian and Cenomanian, mean annual temperature was approximately 10 ±3 °C. During the Coniacian, mean annual temperature may have been 2-3 °C warmer than during the Albian-Cenomanian but no higher than 13 °C. During the Campanian and Maastrichtian, mean annual temperature would have been about 2-8 °C. Although the ranges for the individual estimates overlap, differences among the floras indicate that the relative changes in mean annual temperature did occur.

  7. Early Cretaceous Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous angiosperm.

    PubMed

    Wong, William Oki; Dilcher, David Leonard; Labandeira, Conrad C; Sun, Ge; Fleischmann, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Archaeamphora longicervia H. Q. Li was described as an herbaceous, Sarraceniaceae-like pitcher plant from the mid Early Cretaceous Yixian Formation of Liaoning Province, northeastern China. Here, a re-investigation of A. longicervia specimens from the Yixian Formation provides new insights into its identity and the morphology of pitcher plants claimed by Li. We demonstrate that putative pitchers of Archaeamphora are insect-induced leaf galls that consist of three components: (1) an innermost larval chamber; (2) an intermediate zone of nutritive tissue; and (3) an outermost wall of sclerenchyma. Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous, Sarraceniaceae-like angiosperm, but represents insect-galled leaves of the previously reported gymnosperm Liaoningocladus boii G. Sun et al. from the Yixian Formation. PMID:25999978

  8. Cretaceous extinctions - Evidence for wildfires and search for meteoritic material

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolbach, W. S.; Lewis, R. S.; Anders, E.

    1985-01-01

    The results of analyses of the contents of deposits in the Cretaceous-Ternary (K-T) transition at three sites worldwide are discussed. The study was undertaken to examine the composition of the object which may have struck the earth, causing widespread biotic extinction. The data indicate that most of the parent body was destroyed on impact, a condition which would also hold true for comets, suggesting that comets were not a source of prebiotic life. A four-orders-of-magnitude excess of carbon in the K-T layer is considered in terms of its source, which is suspected to be deposits from wildfires. The consequent extinctions of species are regarded as possibly making the current nuclear winter scenarios too optimistic.

  9. Fullerenes in the cretaceous-tertiary boundary layer

    SciTech Connect

    Heymann, D.; Chibante, L.P.F.; Smalley, R.E. ); Brooks, R.R. ); Wolbach, W.S. )

    1994-07-29

    High-pressure liquid chromatography with ultraviolet-visible spectral analysis of toluene extracts of samples from two Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary sites in New Zealand has revealed the presence of C[sub 60] at concentrations of 0.1 to 0.2 parts per million of the associated soot. This technique verified also that fullerenes are produced in similar amounts in the soots of common flames under ambient atmospheric conditions. Therefore, the C[sub 60] in the K-T boundary layer may have originated in the extensive wildfires that were associated with the cataclysmic impact event that terminated the Mezozoic era about 65 million years ago.

  10. Geodynamic investigation of a Cretaceous superplume in the Pacific ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Jing; King, Scott D.

    2016-08-01

    The similarity in both age and geochemistry of the Ontong-Java, Hikurangi, and Manihiki plateaus suggests that they formed as a single superplateau from a unique mantle source. We investigate the necessity of a thermal superplume to form the Great Ontong-Java plateau at about 120 Ma using 3D spherical models of convection with imposed plate reconstruction models. The numerical simulations show that the giant plateau which formed as a result of melting due to the interaction of a plume head and the lithosphere would have been divided into smaller plateaus by spreading ridges, and end up at the present locations of Ontong-Java, Manihiki, and Hikurangi plateaus as well as a fragment in the western Caribbean. By comparing temperature and melt fraction between models with and without an initial thermal superplume, we propose that a Cretaceous superplume in Pacific at 120 Ma is required to form large igneous plateaus.

  11. An endoparasitoid Cretaceous fly and the evolution of parasitoidism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qingqing; Zhang, Junfeng; Feng, Yitao; Zhang, Haichun; Wang, Bo

    2016-02-01

    Parasitoidism is a key innovation in insect evolution, and parasitoid insects, nowadays, play a significant role in structuring ecological communities. Despite their diversity and ecological impact, little is known about the early evolution and ecology of parasitoid insects, especially parasitoid true flies (Diptera). Here, we describe a bizarre fly, Zhenia xiai gen. et sp. nov., from Late Cretaceous Burmese amber (about 99 million years old) that represents the latest occurrence of the family Eremochaetidae. Z. xiai is an endoparasitoid insect as evidenced by a highly developed, hypodermic-like ovipositor formed by abdominal tergites VIII + IX that was used for injecting eggs into hosts and enlarged tridactylous claws supposedly for clasping hosts. Our results suggest that eremochaetids are among the earliest definite records of parasitoid insects. Our findings reveal an unexpected morphological specialization of flies and broaden our understanding of the evolution and diversity of ancient parasitoid insects.

  12. Seismic expression of subtle strat trap in Upper Cretaceous Almond

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ryder, Robert T.; Lee, Myung W.; Agena, Warren F.; Anderson, Robert C.

    1990-01-01

    The east flank of the Rock Springs uplift and the adjacent Wamsutter arch contain several large hydrocarbon accumulations. Among these accumulations are Patrick Draw field, which produces oil and gas from a stratigraphic trap in the Upper Cretaceous Almond formation, and Table Rock field, a faulted anticlinal trap that produces gas from multiple Tertiary, Mesozoic, and Paleozoic reservoirs. The principal petroleum reservoir in Patrick Draw field is a sandstone at the top of the Almond formation. This sandstone attains a maximum thickness of 35ft and piches out westward into relatively impervious silt-stone and shale that constitute the trapping facies. The objective of this investigation is to determine whether or not the stratigraphic trap at Patrick Draw can be detected on a 12 fold, common depth point seismic profile acquired by Forest Oil Corp. and its partners. The seismic line is 18.5 miles long and crosses Patrick Draw and Table Rock fields.

  13. Seismic expression of subtle strat trap in upper Cretaceous Almond

    SciTech Connect

    Ryder, R.T. ); Lee, M.W.; Agena, W.F. ); Anderson, R.C. )

    1990-12-17

    The east flank of the Rock Springs uplift and the adjacent Wamsutter arch contain several large hydrocarbon accumulations. Among these accumulations are Patrick Draw field, which produces oil and gas from a stratigraphic trap in the upper Cretaceous Almond formation, and Table Rock field, a faulted anticlinal trap that produces gas from multiple Tertiary, Mesozoic, and Paleozoic reservoirs. The principal petroleum reservoir in Patrick Draw field is a sandstone at the top of the Almond formation. This sandstone attains a maximum thickness of 35 ft (11 m) and pinches out westward into relatively impervious siltstone and shale that constitute the trapping facies. The objective of this investigation is to determine whether or not the stratigraphic trap at Patrick Draw can be detected on a 12 fold, common depth point seismic profile.

  14. Cretaceous extinctions - Evidence for wildfires and search for meteoritic material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolbach, W. S.; Lewis, R. S.; Anders, E.

    1985-10-01

    The results of analyses of the contents of deposits in the Cretaceous-Ternary (K-T) transition at three sites worldwide are discussed. The study was undertaken to examine the composition of the object which may have struck the earth, causing widespread biotic extinction. The data indicate that most of the parent body was destroyed on impact, a condition which would also hold true for comets, suggesting that comets were not a source of prebiotic life. A four-orders-of-magnitude excess of carbon in the K-T layer is considered in terms of its source, which is suspected to be deposits from wildfires. The consequent extinctions of species are regarded as possibly making the current nuclear winter scenarios too optimistic.

  15. Alisitos Formation, calcareous facies: Early Cretaceous episode of tectonic calm

    SciTech Connect

    Suarez-Vidal, F.

    1986-07-01

    The Alisitos Formation (Aptian-Albian), shaped as a marine volcanic arc, crops out along the western side of the peninsula of Baja California bounding the Peninsular Range batholith. Lithologically, this formation is formed by volcanic-breccias, porphyritic flows, biohermal limestones, and tuffaceous and pyroclastic sediments. The distribution of the different facies depends on the nature of volcanism and the distance from a volcanic center, although the presence of massive biohermal limestone indicates that in the Early Cretaceous (during the tectonic episodes), the volcanic activity decreased to the level that the environmental conditions were favorable for the development of an organic reef barrier, behind an island arc. Such conditions existed south of the Agua Blanca fault and extended to El Arco, Baja California. Based upon field observations and petrological analysis of the Alisitos limestone, an attempt is made to recreate the environmental condition in the Punta China and San Fernando, Baja California, sites.

  16. Early Cretaceous Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous angiosperm

    PubMed Central

    Wong, William Oki; Dilcher, David Leonard; Labandeira, Conrad C.; Sun, Ge; Fleischmann, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Archaeamphora longicervia H. Q. Li was described as an herbaceous, Sarraceniaceae-like pitcher plant from the mid Early Cretaceous Yixian Formation of Liaoning Province, northeastern China. Here, a re-investigation of A. longicervia specimens from the Yixian Formation provides new insights into its identity and the morphology of pitcher plants claimed by Li. We demonstrate that putative pitchers of Archaeamphora are insect-induced leaf galls that consist of three components: (1) an innermost larval chamber; (2) an intermediate zone of nutritive tissue; and (3) an outermost wall of sclerenchyma. Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous, Sarraceniaceae-like angiosperm, but represents insect-galled leaves of the previously reported gymnosperm Liaoningocladus boii G. Sun et al. from the Yixian Formation. PMID:25999978

  17. Cenomanian-Coniacian Upper Cretaceous foraminiferal fauna of Lithuania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aleksienė, Agnė

    2010-12-01

    Foraminiferal assemblages form a unique fauna succession from the Cenomanian to Maastrichtian stages in Lithuania; the Cenomanian-Coniacian succession is discussed in this paper. The first Cretaceous planktonic foraminifera species appeared in the Early Cenomanian. The Cenomanian planktonic foraminiferal association consists of the relatively abundant genus Hedbergella. However, Cenomanian planktonic foraminifera are rare compared to benthic; the latter are numerous, and their assemblage contains various calcareous and agglutinated species. As a result of environmental changes, foraminiferal assemblages gradually changed as well. The newly formed deep-water niches in the Turonian allowed spreading the keeled forms of planktonic foraminifera. Taxonomically, Turonian-Coniacian foraminiferal assemblages are mainly composed of species of the following genera: Praeglobotruncana, Helvetoglobotruncana, Dicarinella, Marginotruncana.

  18. A biostratigraphic sequence analysis in Cretaceous sediments from Eastern Venezuela

    SciTech Connect

    Paredes, I.; Carillo, M.; Fasola, A.; Luna, F. )

    1993-02-01

    This paper presents the results of a high resolution biostratigraphic study integrated with petrophysic analyses, of the Late Cretaceous sequence in several wells from the Maturin Sub-Basin, Eastern Venezuela. The main objective of this study is to integrate the different faunal and floral assemblages to the sedimentological evolution of the basin using sequential analysis techniques. This technique was applied using mainly terrestrial and marine palynomorphs which were relatively abundant and diverse as compared to the scarcity of foraminifera and nonnofossils. Based on the percentages of abundance and the diversity of the different groups of microfoss it was possible to establish the maximum flooding surfaces and condensation levels which allowed the definition of the possible candidates for the sequence boundaries. On the other hand, the identified bioevents made possible the definition of the chronostratigraphic datums of the sequence under study. The results obtained will contribute to optimize the exploration and development programs of the oil fields in Eastern Venezuela.

  19. The Cretaceous superchron geodynamo: Observations near the tangent cylinder

    PubMed Central

    Tarduno, John A.; Cottrell, Rory D.; Smirnov, Alexei V.

    2002-01-01

    If relationships exist between the frequency of geomagnetic reversals and the morphology, secular variation, and intensity of Earth's magnetic field, they should be best expressed during superchrons, intervals tens of millions of years long lacking reversals. Here we report paleomagnetic and paleointensity data from lavas of the Cretaceous Normal Polarity Superchron that formed at high latitudes near the tangent cylinder that surrounds the solid inner core. The time-averaged field recorded by these lavas is remarkably strong and stable. When combined with global results available from lower latitudes, these data define a time-averaged field that is overwhelmingly dominated by the axial dipole (octupole components are insignificant). These observations suggest that the basic features of the geomagnetic field are intrinsically related. Superchrons may reflect times when the nature of core–mantle boundary heat flux allows the geodynamo to operate at peak efficiency. PMID:12388778

  20. Fire-adapted Gondwanan Angiosperm floras evolved in the Cretaceous

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Fires have been widespread over the last 250 million years, peaking 60−125 million years ago (Ma), and might therefore have played a key role in the evolution of Angiosperms. Yet it is commonly believed that fireprone communities existed only after the global climate became more arid and seasonal 15 Ma. Recent molecular-based studies point to much earlier origins of fireprone Angiosperm floras in Australia and South Africa (to 60 Ma, Paleocene) but even these were constrained by the ages of the clades examined. Results Using a molecular-dated phylogeny for the great Gondwanan family Proteaceae, with a 113-million-year evolutionary history, we show that the ancestors of many of its characteristic sclerophyll genera, such as Protea, Conospermum, Leucadendron, Petrophile, Adenanthos and Leucospermum (all subfamily Proteoideae), occurred in fireprone habitats from 88 Ma (83−94, 95% HPD, Mid-Upper Cretaceous). This coincided with the highest atmospheric oxygen (combustibility) levels experienced over the past 150 million years. Migration from non-fireprone (essentially rainforest-climate-type) environments was accompanied by the evolution of highly speciose clades with a range of seed storage traits and fire-cued seed release or germination mechanisms that was diagnostic for each clade by 71 Ma, though the ant-dispersed lineage (as a soil seed-storage subclade) was delayed until 45 Ma. Conclusions Focusing on the widespread 113-million-year-old family Proteaceae, fireproneness among Gondwanan Angiosperm floras can now be traced back almost 90 million years into the fiery Cretaceous. The associated evolution of on-plant (serotiny) and soil seed storage, and later ant dispersal, affirms them as ancient adaptations to fire among flowering plants. PMID:23171161

  1. Extreme Cranial Ontogeny in the Upper Cretaceous Dinosaur Pachycephalosaurus

    PubMed Central

    Horner, John R.; Goodwin, Mark B.

    2009-01-01

    Background Extended neoteny and late stage allometric growth increase morphological disparity between growth stages in at least some dinosaurs. Coupled with relatively low dinosaur density in the Upper Cretaceous of North America, ontogenetic transformational representatives are often difficult to distinguish. For example, many hadrosaurids previously reported to represent relatively small lambeosaurine species were demonstrated to be juveniles of the larger taxa. Marginocephalians (pachycephalosaurids + ceratopsids) undergo comparable and extreme cranial morphological change during ontogeny. Methodology/Principal Findings Cranial histology, morphology and computer tomography reveal patterns of internal skull development that show the purported diagnostic characters for the pachycephalosaurids Dracorex hogwartsia and Stygimoloch spinifer are ontogenetically derived features. Coronal histological sections of the frontoparietal dome of an adult Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis reveal a dense structure composed of metaplastic bone with a variety of extremely fibrous and acellular tissue. Coronal histological sections and computer tomography of a skull and frontoparietal dome of Stygimoloch spinifer reveal an open intrafrontal suture indicative of a subadult stage of development. These dinosaurs employed metaplasia to rapidly grow and change the size and shape of their horns, cranial ornaments and frontoparietal domes, resulting in extreme cranial alterations during late stages of growth. We propose that Dracorex hogwartsia, Stygimoloch spinifer and Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis are the same taxon and represent an ontogenetic series united by shared morphology and increasing skull length. Conclusions/Significance Dracorex hogwartsia (juvenile) and Stygimoloch spinifer (subadult) are reinterpreted as younger growth stages of Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis (adult). This synonymy reduces the number of pachycephalosaurid taxa from the Upper Cretaceous of North America

  2. Magnesioferrite from the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, Caravaca, Spain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bohor, B.F.; Foord, E.E.; Ganapathy, R.

    1986-01-01

    Magnesioferrite grading toward magnetite has been identified as a very small but meaningful constituent of the basal iron-rich portion of the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary clay at the Barranco del Gredero section, Caravaca, Spain. This spinel-type phase and others of the spinel group, found in K-T boundary clays at many widely separated sites, have been proposed as representing unaltered remnants of ejecta deposited from an earth-girdling dust cloud formed from the impact of an asteroid or other large bolide at the end of the Cretaceous period. The magnesioferrite occurs as euhedral, frequently skeletal, micron-sized octahedral crystals. The magnesioferrite contains 29 ?? 11 ppb Ir, which accounts for only part of the Ir anomaly at this K-T boundary layer (52 ?? 1 ppb Ir). Major element analyses of the magnesioferrite show variable compositions. Some minor solid solution exists toward hercynite-spinel and chromite-magnesiochromite. A trevorite-nichromite (NiFe2O4NiCr2O4) component is also present. The analyses are very similar to those reported for sites at Furlo and Petriccio, Umbria, Italy. On the basis of the morphology and general composition of the magnesioferrite grains, rapid crystallization at high temperature is indicated, most likely directly from a vapor phase and in an environment of moderate oxygen fugacity. Elemental similarity with metallic alloy injected into rocks beneath two known impact craters suggests that part of the magnesioferrite may be derived from the vaporized chondritic bolide itself, or from the mantle; there is no supporting evidence for its derivation from crustal target rocks. ?? 1986.

  3. Proxy Constraints on a Warm, Fresh Late Cretaceous Arctic Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Super, J. R.; Li, H.; Pagani, M.; Chin, K.

    2015-12-01

    The warm Late Cretaceous is thought to have been characterized by open Arctic Ocean temperatures upwards of 15°C (Jenkyns et al., 2004). The high temperatures and low equator-to-pole temperature gradient have proven difficult to reproduce in paleoclimate models, with the role of the atmospheric hydrologic cycle in heat transport being particularly uncertain. Here, sediments, coprolites and fish teeth of Santonian-Campanian age from two high-latitude mixed terrestrial and marine sections on Devon Island in the Canadian High Arctic (Chin et al., 2008) were analyzed using a suite of organic and inorganic proxies to evaluate the temperature and salinity of Arctic seawater. Surface temperature estimates were derived from TEX86 estimates of near-shore, shallow (~100 meters depth) marine sediments (Witkowski et al., 2011) and MBT-CBT estimates from terrestrial intervals and both suggest mean annual temperatures of ~20°C, consistent with previous estimates considering the more southerly location of Devon Island. The oxygen isotope composition of non-diagenetic phosphate from vertebrate coprolites and bony fish teeth were then measured, giving values ranging from +13‰ to +19‰. Assuming the TEX86 temperatures are valid and using the temperature calibration of Puceat 2010, the δ18O values of coprolites imply Arctic Ocean seawater δ18O values between -4‰ and -10‰, implying very fresh conditions. Lastly, the δD of precipitation will be estimated from the hydrogen isotope composition of higher plant leaf waxes (C-25, C-27, C-29 and C-31 n-alkanes) from both terrestrial and marine intervals. Data are used to model the salinity of seawater and the meteoric relationship between δD and δ18O, thereby helping to evaluate the northern high-latitude meteoric water line of the Late Cretaceous.

  4. Early Cretaceous ice rafting and climate zonation in Australia

    SciTech Connect

    Frakes, L.A.; Alley, N.F.; Deynoux, M.

    1995-07-01

    Lower Cretaceous (Valanginian to Albian) strata of the southwestern Eromanga and Carpentaria basins of central and northern Australia, respectively, provide evidence of strongly seasonal climates at high paleolatitudes. These include dispersed clasts (lonestones) in fine sediments and pseudomorphs of calcite after ikaite (glendonites), the latter being known to form only at temperatures below about 7{degrees}C. Rafting is regarded as the transport mechanism for clasts up to boulder size (lonestones) enclosed within dark mudrocks; this interpretation rests on rare occurrences of penetration by clasts into substrate layers. Driftwood and large floating algae are eliminated as possible rafts because fossil wood is found mainly concentrated in nearshore areas of the basins and large algal masses have not been observed. Rafting by icebergs is considered unlikely in view of the global lack of tillites and related glacial deposits of this age. Our interpretation is that seasonal ice, formed in winter along stream courses and strandlines, incorporated clasts which, during the melt season, were dropped into muddy sediments in both basins. Eromanga fine-sediment and concentrations of large clasts and associated sand lenses, both lying above local erosion surfaces. In the Carpentaria Basin, local dumping of sediment from raft surfaces resulted in accumulation of pods of small clasts. Three zones can be identified for the Early Cretaceous climate of eastern Australia: (1) a very cold southern region, at latitudes above about 72{degrees} S, characterized by meteoric waters possibly originating as Antarctic glacial meltwaters; (2) a zone of strongly seasonal climates, with freezing winters and warm summers, between about 72{degrees} and 53{degrees} S.Lat.; and (3) a mid-latitude zone (below about 50{degrees} S. Lat.), where freezing temperatures were not common. 60 refs., 7 figs.

  5. Paleobotany of Livingston Island: The first report of a Cretaceous fossil flora from Hannah Point

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leppe, M.; Michea, W.; Muñoz, C.; Palma-Heldt, S.; Fernandoy, F.

    2007-01-01

    This is the first report of a fossil flora from Hannah Point, Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica. The fossiliferous content of an outcrop, located between two igneous rock units of Cretaceous age are mainly composed of leaf imprints and some fossil trunks. The leaf assemblage consists of 18 taxa of Pteridophyta, Pinophyta and one angiosperm. The plant assemblage can be compared to other Early Cretaceous floras from the South Shetland Islands, but several taxa have an evidently Late Cretaceous affinity. A Coniacian-Santonian age is the most probable age for the outcrops, supported by previous K/Ar isotopic studies of the basalts over and underlying the fossiliferous sequence

  6. Depletion of 13C in Cretaceous marine organic matter: Source, diagenetic, or environmental sigal?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dean, W.E.; Arthur, M.A.; Claypool, G.E.

    1986-01-01

    Geochemical studies of Cretaceous strata rich in organic carbon (OC) from Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP) sites and several land sections reveal several consistent relationships among amount of OC, hydrocarbon generating potential of kerogen (measured by pyrolysis as the hydrogen index, HI), and the isotopic composition of the OC. First, there is a positive correlation between HI and OC in strata that contain more than about 1% OC. Second, percent OC and HI often are negatively correlated with carbon isotopic composition (?? 13C) of kerogen. The relationship between HI and OC indicates that as the amount of organic matter increases, this organic matter tends to be more lipid rich reflecting the marine source of the organic matter. Cretaceous samples that contain predominantly marine organic matter tend to be isotopically lighter than those that contain predominantly terrestrial organic matter. Average ?? 13C values for organic matter from most Cretaceous sites are between -26 and -28???, and values heavier than about -25??? occur at very few sites. Most of the ?? 13C values of Miocene to Holocene OC-rich strata and modern marine plankton are between -16 to -23???. Values of ??13C of modern terrestrial organic matter are mostly between -23 and -33???. The depletion of terrestial OC in 13C relative to marine planktonic OC is the basis for numerous statements in the literature that isotopically light Cretaceous organic matter is of terrestrial origin, even though other organic geochemical and(or) optical indicators show that the organic matter is mainly of marine origin. A difference of about 5??? in ?? 13C between modern and Cretaceous OC-rich marine strata suggests either that Cretaceous marine planktonic organic matter had the same isotopic signature as modern marine plankton and that signature has been changed by diagenesis, or that OC derived from Cretaceous marine plankton was isotopically lighter by about 5??? relative to modern plankton OC. Diagenesis does

  7. Orbital Cyclicities Above and Below the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary, Umbria-Marche Region, Italy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    King, D. T., Jr.; Petruny, L. W.; Rampino, M. R.; Prokoph, A.; Pope, K.; Fischer, A. G.; Montanari, A.; Ocampo, A. C.

    2000-01-01

    In the Umbria-Marche region of central Italy, the deep basinal carbonate Scaglia Rossa Formation contains an important sequence of Cretaceous-Tertiary strata including a detailed paleomagnetic record and the distal impactoclastic Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary clay layer. In addition to this significant paleomagnetic and impactoclastic record, the Scaglia Rossa also contains potentially important stratigraphic evidence of relatively long-term oceanic and atmospheric consequences of the Cretaceous-Tertiary bolide catastrophe, which we will describe for the first time herein. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  8. New crocodiles (Eusuchia: Alligatoroidea) from the Upper Cretaceous of southern Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buscalioni, Angela D.; Ortega, Francisco; Vasse, Denis

    1997-10-01

    The Upper Cretaceous sites of Laño and Quintanilla del Coco in northern Spain have yielded significant crocodilian remains, allowing a more precise interpretation of the fragmentary record of southwestern Europe. Two new genera, Musturzabalsuchus and Acynodon, have been recognized. Both taxa were extinct at the end of the Cretaceous. Their relationships with the alligatoroidean Eusuchia suggest a close relationship with Paleolaurasian groups. Musturzabalsuchus might be regarded as an endemic european taxa, the oldest known member of the basal Alligatoroidea. Acynodon is the only non-North American taxon that is related to the short snouted Upper Cretaceous alligatorids.

  9. Palynological and iridium anomalies at Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, south-central Saskatchewan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, D.J.; Jarzen, D.M.; Orth, C.J.; Oliver, P.Q.

    1986-01-01

    The Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary in south-central Saskatchewan is marked by coincident anomalies in abundance of iridium and fern spores at the extinction level of a suite of Cretaceous pollen taxa. Evidence of disruption of the terrestrial flora includes the fern-spore abundance anomaly and local extinction of as much as 30 percent of angiosperm species. The reorganized earliest Tertiary flora is made up largely of surviving species that assumed new roles of dominance. Persistence of climatically sensitive taxa across the boundary indicates that if paleoclimate was altered by the terminal Cretaceous event, it returned quickly to the pre-event condition.

  10. Clay mineralogy of the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary clay. [in search for asteroid ejecta

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rampino, M. R.; Reynolds, R. C.

    1983-01-01

    Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary layer clay samples from four localities were subjected to analyses which imply that they are neither mineralogically exotic nor distinct from locally derived clays above and below the boundary. The anomalous iridium-rich ejecta component predicted by the asteroid impact scenario of Alvarez et al (1980) was not detected. It is proposed that volcanic material be considered as an explanation of the geochemical anomalies of the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. A model which involves a period of intense volcanism at the end of the Cretaceous would generate a variety of climatic and biological effects consonant with the geologic history of that period.

  11. Paleosols and the Cretaceous/Tertiary transition in the Big Bend region of Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Lehman, T.M. )

    1990-04-01

    A marked change in paleosols coincides with Cretaceous/Tertiary transition in fluvial sediments of the Big Bend region in Texas. Early Paleocene paleosols exhibit thick, black epipedons and a greater depth to the argillic and petrocalcic horizons compared to Late Cretaceous paleosols. These features and comparison with modern soils suggest that early Paleocene soils developed under conditions of higher rainfall and cooler temperatures than did Late Cretaceous soils. The change in paleosols occurs abruptly at the highest occurrence of dinosaur bones in the section.

  12. Tyrant dinosaur evolution tracks the rise and fall of Late Cretaceous oceans.

    PubMed

    Loewen, Mark A; Irmis, Randall B; Sertich, Joseph J W; Currie, Philip J; Sampson, Scott D

    2013-01-01

    The Late Cretaceous (∼95-66 million years ago) western North American landmass of Laramidia displayed heightened non-marine vertebrate diversity and intracontinental regionalism relative to other latest Cretaceous Laurasian ecosystems. Processes generating these patterns during this interval remain poorly understood despite their presumed role in the diversification of many clades. Tyrannosauridae, a clade of large-bodied theropod dinosaurs restricted to the Late Cretaceous of Laramidia and Asia, represents an ideal group for investigating Laramidian patterns of evolution. We use new tyrannosaurid discoveries from Utah--including a new taxon which represents the geologically oldest member of the clade--to investigate the evolution and biogeography of Tyrannosauridae. These data suggest a Laramidian origin for Tyrannosauridae, and implicate sea-level related controls in the isolation, diversification, and dispersal of this and many other Late Cretaceous vertebrate clades. PMID:24223179

  13. Neovenatorid theropods are apex predators in the Late Cretaceous of North America.

    PubMed

    Zanno, Lindsay E; Makovicky, Peter J

    2013-01-01

    Allosauroid theropods were a diverse and widespread radiation of Jurassic-Cretaceous megapredators. Achieving some of the largest body sizes among theropod dinosaurs, these colossal hunters dominated terrestrial ecosystems until a faunal turnover redefined apex predator guild occupancy during the final 20 million years of the Cretaceous. Here we describe a giant new species of allosauroid--Siats meekerorum gen. et sp. nov.--providing the first evidence for the cosmopolitan clade Neovenatoridae in North America. Siats is the youngest allosauroid yet discovered from the continent and demonstrates that the clade endured there into the Late Cretaceous. The discovery provides new evidence for ecologic sympatry of large allosauroids and small-bodied tyrannosauroids. These data support the hypothesis that extinction of Allosauroidea in terrestrial ecosystems of North America permitted ecological release of tyrannosauroids, which went on to dominate end-Cretaceous food webs. PMID:24264527

  14. Tyrant Dinosaur Evolution Tracks the Rise and Fall of Late Cretaceous Oceans

    PubMed Central

    Loewen, Mark A.; Irmis, Randall B.; Sertich, Joseph J. W.; Currie, Philip J.; Sampson, Scott D.

    2013-01-01

    The Late Cretaceous (∼95–66 million years ago) western North American landmass of Laramidia displayed heightened non-marine vertebrate diversity and intracontinental regionalism relative to other latest Cretaceous Laurasian ecosystems. Processes generating these patterns during this interval remain poorly understood despite their presumed role in the diversification of many clades. Tyrannosauridae, a clade of large-bodied theropod dinosaurs restricted to the Late Cretaceous of Laramidia and Asia, represents an ideal group for investigating Laramidian patterns of evolution. We use new tyrannosaurid discoveries from Utah—including a new taxon which represents the geologically oldest member of the clade—to investigate the evolution and biogeography of Tyrannosauridae. These data suggest a Laramidian origin for Tyrannosauridae, and implicate sea-level related controls in the isolation, diversification, and dispersal of this and many other Late Cretaceous vertebrate clades. PMID:24223179

  15. The Sredne-Amursky basin: A migrating cretaceous depocenter for the Amur river, eastern Siberia

    SciTech Connect

    Light, M.; Maslanyj, M.; Davidson, K. )

    1993-09-01

    Recently acquired seismic, well, and regional geological data imply favorable conditions for the accumulation of oil and gas in the 20,000 km[sup 2] Sredne-Amursky basin. Major graben and northeast-trending sinistral wrench-fault systems are recognized in the basin. Lower and Upper Cretaceous sediments are up to 9000 and 3000 m thick, respectively. Paleogeographic reconstructions imply that during the Late Triassic-Early Cretaceous the Sredne-Amursky basin was part of a narrow marine embayment (back-arc basin), which was open to the north. During the Cretaceous, the region was part of a foreland basin complicated by strike-slip, which produced subsidence related to transtension during oblique collision of the Sikhote-Alin arc with Eurasian margin. Contemporaneous uplift also related to this collision migrated from south to north and may have sourced northward-directed deltas and alluvial fans, which fed northward into the closing back-arc basin between 130 and 85 Ma. The progradational clastic succession of the Berriasian-Albian and the Late Cretaceous fluvial, brackish water and paralic sediments within the basin may be analogous to the highly productive late Tertiary clastics of the Amur River delta in the northeast Sakhalin basin. Cretaceous-Tertiary lacustrine-deltaic sapropelic shales provide significant source and seal potential and potential reservoirs occur in the Cretaceous and Tertiary. Structural plays were developed during Cretaceous rifting and subsequent strike-slip deformation. If the full hydrocarbon potential of the Sredne-Amursky basin is to be realized, the regional appraisal suggests that exploration should be focused toward the identification of plays related to prograding Cretaceous deltaic depositional systems.

  16. Cretaceous and Tertiary samples dredged from Florida Escarpment, Eastern Gulf of Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Freeman-Lynde, R.P.

    1983-09-01

    Cretaceous and Tertiary rocks were dredged along the Florida Escarpment at five areas south of 27/sup 0/05'N in late 1982 during cruise LY-82A of USNS Lynch. The escarpment was sampled from near the base (as deep as 3300 m, 10,800 ft) to near the top (as shallow as 1500 m, 4900 ft) of the slope. Presumed middle Cretaceous dolomites deposited in hypersaline bank-interior environments were taken primarily from the walls of canyons incised from 10 to 50 km (6 to 30 mi) into the escarpment, and also from the escarpment proper at several dredge stations. Limestone lithologic characteristics are generally bioturbated miliolid and mollusk wackestone/packstone (lagoonal) and fenestral and algal-laminated mudstone/wackestone (peritidal). Some dolomites retain primary sedimentary structures (e.g., mottling and algal lamination), whereas others appear structureless, perhaps due to recrystallization. Few of the middle Cretaceous samples were deposited under high-energy conditions. Those that are high-energy deposits are bioclastic rudstones and coral boundstones. Late Cretaceous and Tertiary deep-water limestones and chalks unconformably overlie and drape the older shallow-water carbonates. The limestones are Late Cretaceous through Pleistocene. The limited occurrence of high-energy facies rocks indicates that the escarpment has been eroded bankward over its entire length south of 27/sup 0/05'N, and not just at canyon reentrants. The younger deep-water rocks reflect the drowning of the middle Cretaceous platform in Late Cretaceous time. The facies change from limestone to dolomite is attributed to higher salinities in the bank interior during the middle Cretaceous.

  17. Cretaceous anuran and dinosaur footprints from the Patuxent Formation of Virginia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Weems, R.E.; Bachman, J.M.

    1997-01-01

    Footprints of an anuran (gen. et sp. indet.), a theropod dinosaur (Megalosauropus sp.), and an ornithopod dinosaur (Amblydactylus sp.) have been recovered from the Lower Cretaceous Patuxent Formation in Stafford County, Virginia. These footprints are the first record of terrestrial vertebrates from Cretaceous strata in Virginia, and their discovery suggests that the scarcity of bones and teeth in the Patuxent probably is an artifact of preservation. The anuran trackway provides the oldest known direct evidence for hopping locomotion among these amphibians.

  18. Late Cretaceous relatives of rabbits, rodents, and other extant eutherian mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Archibald, J. David; Averianov, Alexander O.; Ekdale, Eric G.

    2001-11-01

    Extant eutherian mammals and their most recent common ancestor constitute the crown group Placentalia. This taxon, plus all extinct taxa that share a more recent common ancestor with placentals than they do with Metatheria (including marsupials), constitute Eutheria. The oldest well documented eutherian-dominated fauna in the world is Dzharakuduk, Uzbekistan. Among eutherians that it yields is Kulbeckia, an 85-90-Myr-old member of Zalambdalestidae (a family of Late Cretaceous Asian eutherians). This extends Zalambdalestidae back by some 10 million years from sites in the Gobi Desert, Mongolia. A phylogenetic analysis of well described Late Cretaceous eutherians strongly supports Zalambdalestidae, less strongly supports `Zhelestidae' (a Late Cretaceous clade related to Tertiary ungulates), but does not support Asioryctitheria (a group of Late Cretaceous Asian eutherians). A second analysis incorporating placentals from clades that include rodents (Tribosphenomys), lagomorphs (Mimotona) and archaic ungulates (Protungulatum and Oxyprimus) strongly supports Zalambdalestidae in a clade with Glires (rabbits, rodents and extinct relatives) and less strongly `Zhelestidae' within a clade that includes archaic ungulates (`condylarths'). This argues that some Late Cretaceous eutherians belong within the crown group Placentalia. The ages of these taxa are in line with molecularly based estimates of 64-104Myr ago (median 84Myr ago) for the superordinal diversification of some placentals, but provide no support for a Late Cretaceous diversification of extant placental orders.

  19. Extensional tectonic influence on lower and upper cretaceous stratigraphy and reservoirs, southern Powder River basin, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, G.C.; Rogers, M.H.

    1993-04-01

    The southern Powder River basin has been influenced significantly by an extensional system affecting Lower Cretaceous, Upper Cretaceous and Tertiary units. The system is composed of small throw, nearly vertical normal faults which are identified in the Cretaceous marine shales and that we believe are basement derived. Resultant fractures were present at erosional/depositional surfaces, both marine and nonmarine, that, in part, controlled erosion and subsequent deposition of Lower and Upper Cretaceous rocks. The normal faults also affected coal deposition in the Tertiary, now exposed at the surface. The erosion and resultant deposition formed extensive stratigraphic traps in Cretaceous units in both conventional and unconventional reservoirs. These reservoirs are interbedded with mature source rocks that have generated and expelled large amounts of hydrocarbons. Resulting overpressuring in the Fall River through the Niobrara formations has kept fractures open and has preserved primary porosity in the reservoirs. The normal faults offset thin sandstone reservoirs forming permeability barriers. Associated fractures may have provided vertical pathways for organic acids that assisted development of secondary porosity in Upper Cretaceous sandstones. These normal...faults and fractures provide significant potential for the use of horizontal drilling techniques to evaluate fractured, overpressured conventional and unconventional reservoirs.

  20. Influence of Transcontinental arch on Cretaceous listric-normal faulting, west flank, Denver basin

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, T.L.

    1983-08-01

    Seismic studies along the west flank of the Denver basin near Boulder and Greeley, Colorado illustrate the interrelationship between shallow listric-normal faulting in the Cretaceous and deeper basement-controlled faulting. Deeper fault systems, primarily associated with the Transcontinental arch, control the styles and causative mechanisms of listric-normal faulting that developed in the Cretaceous. Three major stratigraphic levels of listric-normal faulting occur in the Boulder-Greeley area. These tectonic sensitive intervals are present in the following Cretaceous formations: Laramie-Fox Hills-upper Pierre, middle Pierre Hygiene zone, and the Niobrara-Carlile-Greenhorn. Documentation of the listric-normal fault style reveals a Wattenberg high, a horst block or positive feature of the greater Transcontinental arch, was active in the east Boulder-Greeley area during Cretaceous time. Paleotectonic events associated with the Wattenberg high are traced through analysis of the listric-normal fault systems that occur in the area. These styles are important to recognize because of their stratigraphic and structural influence on Cretaceous petroleum reservoir systems in the Denver basin. Similar styles of listric-normal faulting occur in the Cretaceous in many Rocky Mountain foreland basins.

  1. Magnetostratigraphic correlation of the Upper Cretaceous System in the North Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kodama, K.

    2003-06-01

    Magnetostratigraphic data for Upper Cretaceous sedimentary strata in widely separated regions of the North Pacific, including Japan, Far East Russia and western North America, are reviewed in terms of calibration to the geomagnetic polarity time scale and regional correlation. A series of normal and reversed polarity zones are recognized in the Upper Cretaceous strata in Shikoku and Hokkaido, Japan, and South Sakhalin, Far East Russia. Combined magnetostratigraphic and biostratigraphic correlation has assigned these zones to the Late Cretaceous geomagnetic polarity chrons including C31r through C33r and the Cretaceous long normal interval. Corresponding geomagnetic reversals have been documented from the Upper Cretaceous successions of the Western Interior of North America, in combination with high-resolution ammonite biostratigraphy and radiometric age dates. Biostratigraphy of the Great Valley Sequence in California is also well-defined, but there is only one reversed interval that can be correlated with polarity chron C33r. The most complete record of polarity reversals in South Sakhalin would provide an integrated reference scheme which can be of significant use not only to correlate dissimilar faunal assemblages of disparate regions in the North Pacific, but also to contribute to a global definition of Upper Cretaceous stage boundaries.

  2. A New Hadrosauroid Dinosaur from the Early Late Cretaceous of Shanxi Province, China

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Run-Fu; You, Hai-Lu; Xu, Shi-Chao; Wang, Suo-Zhu; Yi, Jian; Xie, Li-Juan; Jia, Lei; Li, Ya-Xian

    2013-01-01

    Background The origin of hadrosaurid dinosaurs is far from clear, mainly due to the paucity of their early Late Cretaceous close relatives. Compared to numerous Early Cretaceous basal hadrosauroids, which are mainly from Eastern Asia, only six early Late Cretaceous (pre-Campanian) basal hadrosauroids have been found: three from Asia and three from North America. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a new hadrosauroid dinosaur, Yunganglong datongensis gen. et sp. nov., from the early Late Cretaceous Zhumapu Formation of Shanxi Province in northern China. The new taxon is represented by an associated but disarticulated partial adult skeleton including the caudodorsal part of the skull. Cladistic analysis and comparative studies show that Yunganglong represents one of the most basal Late Cretaceous hadrosauroids and is diagnosed by a unique combination of features in its skull and femur. Conclusions/Significance The discovery of Yunganglong adds another record of basal Hadrosauroidea in the early Late Cretaceous, and helps to elucidate the origin and evolution of Hadrosauridae. PMID:24204734

  3. The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahirovic, S.; Seton, M.; Müller, R. D.

    2014-04-01

    Tectonic reconstructions of Southeast Asia have given rise to numerous controversies that include the accretionary history of Sundaland and the enigmatic tectonic origin of the proto-South China Sea. We assimilate a diversity of geological and geophysical observations into a new regional plate model, coupled to a global model, to address these debates. Our approach takes into account terrane suturing and accretion histories, the location of subducted slabs imaged in mantle tomography in order to constrain the evolution of regional subduction zones, as well as plausible absolute and relative plate velocities and tectonic driving mechanisms. We propose a scenario of rifting from northern Gondwana in the latest Jurassic, driven by northward slab pull from north-dipping subduction of Tethyan crust beneath Eurasia, to detach East Java, Mangkalihat, southeast Borneo and West Sulawesi blocks that collided with a Tethyan intra-oceanic subduction zone in the mid-Cretaceous and subsequently accreted to the Sunda margin (i.e., southwest Borneo core) in the Late Cretaceous. In accounting for the evolution of plate boundaries, we propose that the Philippine Sea plate originated on the periphery of Tethyan crust forming this northward conveyor. We implement a revised model for the Tethyan intra-oceanic subduction zones to reconcile convergence rates, changes in volcanism and the obduction of ophiolites. In our model the northward margin of Greater India collides with the Kohistan-Ladakh intra-oceanic arc at ∼53 Ma, followed by continent-continent collision closing the Shyok and Indus-Tsangpo suture zones between ∼42 and 34 Ma. We also account for the back-arc opening of the proto-South China Sea from ∼65 Ma, consistent with extension along east Asia and the formation of supra-subduction zone ophiolites presently found on the island of Mindoro. The related rifting likely detached the Semitau continental fragment from South China, which accreted to northern Borneo in

  4. The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahirovic, S.; Seton, M.; Müller, R. D.

    2013-08-01

    Tectonic reconstructions of Southeast Asia have given rise to numerous controversies which include the accretionary history of Sundaland and the enigmatic tectonic origin of the Proto South China Sea. We assimilate a diversity of geological and geophysical observations into a new regional plate model, coupled to a global model, to address these debates. Our approach takes into account terrane suturing and accretion histories, the location of subducted slabs imaged in mantle tomography in order to constrain the opening and closure history of paleo-ocean basins, as well as plausible absolute and relative plate velocities and tectonic driving mechanisms. We propose a scenario of rifting from northern Gondwana in the Late Jurassic, driven by northward slab pull, to detach East Java, Mangkalihat, southeast Borneo and West Sulawesi blocks that collided with a Tethyan intra-oceanic subduction zone in the mid Cretaceous and subsequently accreted to the Sunda margin (i.e. southwest Borneo core) in the Late Cretaceous. In accounting for the evolution of plate boundaries, we propose that the Philippine Sea Plate originated on the periphery of Tethyan crust forming this northward conveyor. We implement a revised model for the Tethyan intra-oceanic subduction zones to reconcile convergence rates, changes in volcanism and the obduction of ophiolites. In our model the northward margin of Greater India collides with the Kohistan-Ladakh intra-oceanic arc at ∼53 Ma, followed by continent-continent collision closing the Shyok and Indus-Tsangpo suture zones between ∼42 and 34 Ma. We also account for the back-arc opening of the Proto South China Sea from ∼65 Ma, consistent with extension along east Asia and the emplacement of supra-subduction zone ophiolites presently found on the island of Mindoro. The related rifting likely detached the Semitau continental fragment from east China, which accreted to northern Borneo in the mid Eocene, to account for the Sarawak Orogeny

  5. The Cretaceous glauconitic sandstones of Abu Tartur, Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pestitschek, Brigitte; Gier, Susanne; Essa, Mahmoud; Kurzweil, Johannes

    2010-05-01

    The Abu Tartur mine is located in the Western Desert of Egypt, 50 km west of El Kharga City. Geologically, the Abu Tartur plateau is built by a sequence of Upper Cretaceous (Campanian - Maastrichtian) phosphorites, black shales and glauconitic sandstones. The phosphate deposits are of great economic importance and have been mined since their discovery in 1967. Outcrop sections were measured, sampled, sedimentologically characterized and described. One specific glaucony layer was investigated mineralogically and chemically in detail and compared to a subsurface sample from the mine. Two depositional regimes can be interpreted based on sedimentary architecture and structures: 1) a deeper-water hemipelagic environment, where phosphorites and organic carbon-rich shales were deposited and 2) a shallower, prograding higher energy shelf environment with glauconies. From a sequence stratigraphic perspective 1) was deposited during the transgressive systems tract and the early highstand while 2) was deposited during the remaining highstand and a lowstand prograding wedge (Glenn & Arthur, 1990). Petrographic and SEM investigations show that the glaucony grains are of authochtonous origin. XRF, EMPA and thin-section analyses show that the glaucony grains from the outcrop differ significantly in their chemical composition, morphology and color from the grains of the mine sample. The fresh glauconies are enriched in Fe2O3 and K2O compared to the surface samples. XRD analyses of the clay fraction of the six outcrop samples and the mine sample show that the grains consist of illite(glauconite)/smectite mixed-layers, with more illite layers (80 %) in the mine sample. The charge distribution diagram muscovite-pyrophyllite-celadonite shows a clear trend from smectitic glaucony to illitic glaucony, the mine sample plots exactly in the field for glauconites. All these features indicate that the surface samples are strongly altered by weathering and that glauconite progressively

  6. Sequence stratigraphy of the lower Upper Cretaceous Elbtal Group (Saxony, Germany): new data from Middle Cenomanian-Upper Turonian outcrops and boreholes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richardt, Nadine; Wilmsen, Markus

    2013-04-01

    The formations of the Saxonian Cretaceous have been combined in the so-called Elbtal Group. Their sedimentation took place in a terrestrial to neritic environment palaeogeographically located between the Mid-European Island (MEI) in the SW and the Lusatian Massif in the NE. The through extended from the narrow marine strait of Saxony into the broad Bohemian Cretaceous Basin (Czech Republic) further to the SE. Deposition has been dominated by marine siliciclastics that accumulated on a graded shelf with basically three main facies zones: the coarse-grained nearshore zone ("Küstensandsteinzone"), the transitional zone ("Faziesübergangszone") and the fine-grained marly offshore facies zone ("Plänerfazies"). In general, transgression proceeded in late Early Cenomanian times from the N. Relictic remains of these marine bioclastic conglomerates (Meißen Formation) only occur in the northwesternmost area of the basin around Meißen and are related to the highstand of the depositional sequence Cenomanian 3 (DS Ce 3). After a short stratigraphic gap, onlap continued in the Middle Cenomanian with the following Niederschöna Formation consisting of coarse-grained braided river deposits at the base grading via carbonaceous point-bar cycles of a meandering river system into bioturbated, partly cross-bedded estuarine sediments toward the top. These sediments record DS Ce 4 and are capped by a paleosol. Sedimentation of DS Ce 5 started with a renewed transgressional pulse initiating the Late Cenomanian. The strata consist of bioturbated, cross-bedded predominantly fine- to medium-grained quartz sandstones with some shell-rich horizons corresponding to the Oberhäslich Formation. The unconformably overlying DS Tu 1 comprises the uppermost Cenomanian Dölzschen Formation and the Lower Turonian part of the Schmilka Formation. The onset of this depositional sequence is marked by a major transgression ("plenus Transgression) drowning the remaining pre-transgression topography

  7. Long-Proboscid Flies as Pollinators of Cretaceous Gymnosperms.

    PubMed

    Peñalver, Enrique; Arillo, Antonio; Pérez-de la Fuente, Ricardo; Riccio, Mark L; Delclòs, Xavier; Barrón, Eduardo; Grimaldi, David A

    2015-07-20

    The great evolutionary success of angiosperms has traditionally been explained, in part, by the partnership of these plants with insect pollinators. The main approach to understanding the origins of this pervasive relationship has been study of the pollinators of living cycads, gnetaleans, and basal angiosperms. Among the most morphologically specialized living pollinators are diverse, long-proboscid flies. Early such flies include the brachyceran family Zhangsolvidae, previously known only as compression fossils from the Early Cretaceous of China and Brazil. It belongs to the infraorder Stratiomyomorpha, a group that includes the flower-visiting families Xylomyidae and Stratiomyidae. New zhangsolvid specimens in amber from Spain (ca. 105 mega-annum [Ma]) and Myanmar (100 Ma) reveal a detailed proboscis structure adapted to nectivory. Pollen clumped on a specimen from Spain is Exesipollenites, attributed to a Mesozoic gymnosperm, most likely the Bennettitales. Late Mesozoic scorpionflies with a long proboscis have been proposed as specialized pollinators of various extinct gymnosperms, but pollen has never been observed on or in their bodies. The new discovery is a very rare co-occurrence of pollen with its insect vector and provides substantiating evidence that other long-proboscid Mesozoic insects were gymnosperm pollinators. Evidence is thus now gathering that visitors and probable pollinators of early anthophytes, or seed plants, involved some insects with highly specialized morphological adaptations, which has consequences for interpreting the reproductive modes of Mesozoic gymnosperms and the significance of insect pollination in angiosperm success. PMID:26166781

  8. Sequence stratigraphy on an early Cretaceous passive margin, Exmouth Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Boyd, R.; Gorur, N.; Ito, M.; O'Brien, D.; Wilkens, R.; Tang, C.

    1989-03-01

    Permian-Jurassic rifting of northwestern Australia resulted in the development of a passive continental margin flanking the northeastern Indian Ocean. On this margin the relatively thin synrift to postrift sedimentary sequence of southern Exmouth Plateau was drilled during ODP Leg 122. A sequence-stratigraphy analysis of the complete Mesozoic-Cenozoic sedimentary succession at Sites 762 and 763 was derived from a synthesis of seismic stratigraphy, wireline logs, lithostratigraphy, biostratigraphy, and magnetostratigraphy. Results indicate that during breakup, the southern Exmouth Plateau was a transform margin with an extensional component. Between the Tithonian and Valanginian, a thick clastic wedge prograded from the transform margin south of Site 763 northwestward toward Site 762 and onto subsiding continental crust. Southern clastic supply decreased into the Aptian-Cenomanian, and cyclic deposition of deep-water mudstones continued during subsidence of the earlier shelf margin wedge. Between the Albian and Cenomanian, deposition gradually became dominated by pelagic carbonates. Two regional unconformities mark the Cenomanian/Turonian and Cretaceous/Tertiary boundaries. Each was an erosional event, succeeded by renewed pelagic carbonate deposition that began in the distal northern basin and onlapped progressively toward the topographic high, which persisted into the Tertiary along the southern margin. The entire Jurassic to Holocene record at the southern Exmouth Plateau ODP sites is less than 1500 m thick and represents a classic rift to mature ocean passive-margin succession.

  9. Early Cretaceous rifts of Western and Central Africa: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiraud, René; Maurin, Jean-Christophe

    1992-10-01

    The structure and evolution of Early Cretaceous rift basins in Western and Central Africa are described. Two stages of rift development and fracturing have been identified: (1) from Neocomian to Early Aptian roughly E-W and NW trending troughs (Upper Benue, N Cameroon, S Chad, Sudan etc.) opened in response to a submeridian extensional regime in Central Africa while in Western Africa the N-S trending transsaharian fault zone acted as a sinistral wrench; (2) from Middle Aptian to Late Albian large northwest trending troughs (E Niger, Sudan, Sirte, etc.) opened in response to a northeast extensional regime while the Central African fault zone (from Benue to Sudan) exhibited strike-slip movements, generating pull-apart basins. These rift and fracture systems delimit three large blocks within the African plate: a Western block, an Arabian-Nubian block and an Austral block. The Arabian-Nubian block tends to separate from the two other blocks, migrating towards the north during the first stage of basin development and then towards the NE during the second stage. The opening of the Atlantic Ocean was the dominant driving force for the Western and Austral blocks while the Arabian-Nubian block probably moved in response to the opening of the Indian Ocean and to the evolution of the Tethyan margin.

  10. Fleas (Siphonaptera) are Cretaceous, and evolved with Theria.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Qiyun; Hastriter, Michael W; Whiting, Michael F; Dittmar, Katharina

    2015-09-01

    Fleas (order Siphonaptera) are highly-specialized, diverse blood-feeding ectoparasites of mammals and birds with an enigmatic evolutionary history and obscure origin. We here present a molecular phylogenetic study based on a comprehensive taxon sampling of 259 flea taxa, representing 16 of the 18 extant families of this order. A Bayesian phylogenetic tree with strong nodal support was recovered, consisting of seven sequentially derived lineages with Macropsyllidae as the earliest divergence, followed by Stephanocircidae. Divergence times of flea lineages were estimated based on fossil records and host specific associations to bats (Chiroptera), suggesting that the common ancestor of extant Siphonaptera diversified during the Cretaceous. However, most of the intraordinal divergence into extant lineages took place after the K-Pg boundary. Ancestral states of host association and biogeographical distribution were reconstructed, suggesting with high likelihood that fleas originated in the southern continents (Gondwana) and migrated from South America to their extant distributions in a relatively short time frame. Theria (placental mammals and marsupials) represent the most likely ancestral host group of extant Siphonaptera, with marsupials occupying a more important role than previously assumed. Major extant flea families evolved in connection to post K-Pg diversification of Placentalia. The association of fleas with monotremes and birds is likely due to later secondary host association. These results suggest caution in casually interpreting recently discovered Mesozoic fossil "dinosaur fleas" of Northeast Asia as part of what we currently consider Siphonaptera. PMID:25987528

  11. Phosphogenesis at a Cretaceous methane seep from New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zwicker, Jennifer; Steindl, Florian; Smrzka, Daniel; Böttcher, Michael; Gier, Susanne; Kiel, Steffen; Peckmann, Jörn

    2016-04-01

    Phosphate-rich deposits have been a topic of intense research for decades. The process of phosphogenesis is mainly observed in marine sediments of coastal upwelling zones, where organic matter delivers sufficient phosphorus (P) to enable the formation of phosphorites. As P may be cycled within marine sediments on short timescales, only specific geochemical conditions allow for the precipitation and preservation of phosphate minerals. The processes that enable phosphogenesis are still a matter of debate, and not all mechanisms involved are fully understood. We expand the scope of known phosphorous-rich deposits further, with evidence of phosphogenesis at methane seeps. Cretaceous methane-seep limestones from Waipiro Bay, New Zealand, exhibit (1) a matrix composed of cryptocrystalline fluorapatite in between micritic spheroids and coated calcite grains, and (2) phosphatic spheroids within a micritic matrix. Due to the abundant spherical morphologies of phosphate and carbonate grains, and the exceptionally well preserved phosphate matrix, we suggest that their formation was associated with microbial activity. Methane seeps provide ideal conditions for chemosynthetic communities to thrive, and for the growth of bacterial mats at the sediment water interface. To understand these unique deposits, we derive a formation scenario for apatite and spheroidal carbonate, using detailed petrographical observations, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and electron microprobe analyses. Furthermore, it is shown that phase-specific stable carbon and oxygen isotopes confirm that both phosphate and carbonate formation occurred at a methane seep.

  12. Seawater strontium isotopes at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macdougall, J. D.; Martin, E.

    1988-01-01

    Anomalously high values of Seawater Sr-87/Sr-86 near the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary have been reported. However, few of the data from the literature are from a single continuous section, and perhaps the most complete study of the boundary region, from a shallow marine limestone sequence in Alabama, showed elevated Sr-87/Sr-86 but no pronounced spike. Thus, in order to investigate the cause of the change in strontium isotopic composition, it is important to determine the exact nature and magnitude of the increase by studying in detail continuous sections through the boundary. If there is indeed a Sr isotope spike at the K-T boundary, it requires the addition of a large amount of radiogenic Sr to the oceans over a short time period, a phenomenon that may be linked to other large-scale environmental disturbances which occurred at that time. In order to address this question, a high-resolution strontium isotope study of foraminifera from three Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP) cores which recovered the K-T boundary section: Site 356 in the South Atlantic, Site 384 in the North Atlantic and Site 577 from the Shatsky Rise in the Pacific was initiated. The isotope measurements are being made on either single or small numbers of forams carefully picked and identified and in most cases examined by SEM before analysis. Because this work is not yet complete, conclusions drawn here must be viewed as tentative. They are briefly discussed.

  13. Cretaceous choristoderan reptiles gave birth to live young

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Qiang; Wu, Xiao-Chun; Cheng, Yen-Nien

    2010-04-01

    Viviparity (giving birth to live young) in fossil reptiles has been known only in a few marine groups: ichthyosaurs, pachypleurosaurs, and mosasaurs. Here, we report a pregnant specimen of the Early Cretaceous Hyphalosaurus baitaigouensis, a species of Choristodera, a diapsid group known from unequivocal fossil remains from the Middle Jurassic to the early Miocene (about 165 to 20 million years ago). This specimen provides the first evidence of viviparity in choristoderan reptiles and is also the sole record of viviparity in fossil reptiles which lived in freshwater ecosystems. This exquisitely preserved specimen contains up to 18 embryos arranged in pairs. Size comparison with small free-living individuals and the straight posture of the posterior-most pair suggest that those embryos were at term and had probably reached parturition. The posterior-most embryo on the left side has the head positioned toward the rear, contrary to normal position, suggesting a complication that may have contributed to the mother’s death. Viviparity would certainly have freed species of Hyphalosaurus from the need to return to land to deposit eggs; taking this advantage, they would have avoided intense competition with contemporaneous terrestrial carnivores such as dinosaurs.

  14. Late Cretaceous biostratigraphy of the La Luna Formation, Maracaibo basin

    SciTech Connect

    Truskowski, I.; Galeaalvarez, F.; Sliter, W.V.

    1996-08-01

    Micropaleontological analysis, sedimentological studies, and geochemical data are presented for the Upper Cretaceous {open_quote}black shales{close_quote} of the La Luna Formation of Western Venezuela. The detailed planktonic foraminiferal studies allowed the establishment of the first biozonation, determination of sedimentation rates, and documentation of occurrences of benthic foraminifers for these unusually thick black shales that extend stratigraphically nearly 100 m. Hedbergellids, whiteinellids and Heterohelix characterize the lower part of the La Luna Formation, dated from the late Cenomanian Rotalipora cushmani Zone to middle Turonian Helvetoglobotruncana belvetica Zone. The high productivity of these groups associated with phosphatized fish remains suggest upwelling and a poorly stratified water column. The presence of buliminids and Favreina sp. at some levels, imply disoxic conditions in this anoxic interval. Planktonic foraminifers in the middle and upper parts of the formation range in age from the late Turonian Marginotruncana sigali- Dicarinella primitiva Zone to the early Campanian Globotruncanita elevata Zone. The increase in keeled planktonic foraminifers toward the top of the formation suggest more stratified, oligotrophic surface waters. Benthic foraminifers found at the top are indicative of dysaerobic conditions. This study provides new opportunities for utilizing the petroleum system in the La Luna Formation, arguably the most prolific source rock in northern South America.

  15. Late Cretaceous (Austin Group) volcanic deposits as a hydrocarbon trap

    SciTech Connect

    Hutchinson, P.J.

    1994-09-01

    A Late Cretaceous submarine igneous extrusion occurs in the subsurface of southwestern Wilson County, Texas. The Coniacian-Santonian-aged (Austin Group) volcanic eruption discharged large volumes of magnetite-rich olivine nephelinite, that upon quenching, formed an extensive nontronitic clay layer. This clay deposit formed a trapping mechanism for hydrocarbons beneath the volcano; production from these features is normally attributed to the shoal-water carbonate facics developed on top of the volcano. The heat energy of the volcano may have thermally matured the calcareous sediments of the Austin Chalk contiguous with the volcano. The normally grayish-colored Austin Chalk in contact with the intrusive portion of the igneous material displays a greenish color suggesting thermal alteration. The overlying nontronite trapped the mobile hydrocarbons, and early emplacement may have preserved some of the original porosity and permeability of the Austin Chalk. Austin Chalk-aged volcanic deposits produce hydrocarbons from stratigraphic traps within the volcanic material, within the porous beachrock, and structurally within overlying sandstones. The intruded Austin Chalk also behaves as a reservoir because the original porosity and permeability is maintained through early emplacement of oil and the overlying volcanic clay prevents vertical migration. Marcefina Creek, discovered in 1980 from an {open_quotes}augen{close_quotes}-shaped seismic signature and an aerial magnetic survey, produces from the fractured chalk beneath the nontronitic clay layer. This field has produced over seven million bbl of oil from over 40 wells from fractured and porous rock beneath the volcano.

  16. Upper cretaceous (Austin Group) volcanic deposits as a hydrocarbon trap

    SciTech Connect

    Hutchinson, P.J.

    1994-12-31

    An Upper Cretaceous submarine igneous extrusion occurs in the subsurface of southwestern Wilson County, Texas. The Coniacian-Santonian-aged (Austin Group) volcanic eruption discharged large volumes of magnetite-rich olivine nephelinite that upon quenching formed an extensive nontronitic clay layer. This clay deposit formed a trapping mechanism for hydrocarbon beneath the volcano. Production from volcanic plugs is normally attributed to the shoal-water carbonate facies developed on top of the volcanic, the palagonite tuff ({open_quotes}serpentine{close_quotes}), and overlying sandstones. The heat energy of the volcano may have thermally matured the calcarous sediments of adjacent parts of the Austin Chalk. The normally grayish-colored suggesting thermal alteration. The overlying nontronite trapped mobile hydrocarbons, and this early emplacement of oil may have preserved some of the original porosity and permeability of the Austin Chalk. Austin Chalk-aged volcanic deposits produce hydrocarbons from stratigraphic traps within the volcanic material, within the porous beachrock, and structurally within overlying sandstones. The intruded Austin Chalk also behaves as a reservoir because the original porosity and permeability are maintained by early emplacement of oil and the overlying volcanic clay acts as a seal by preventing vertical migration. Marcelina Creek field, discovered in 1980 from an {open_quotes}augen{close_quotes}-shaped seismic signature and an aerial magnetic survey, produces from the fractured chalk beneath the nontronitic clay layer. This field has produced more than 15 million barrels of oil from more than 60 wells in fractured and porous rock beneath the volcano.

  17. Homing in on sweet spots in Cretaceous Austin chalk

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, G.E. ); Sonnenberg, F.P.

    1993-11-29

    In discussing the nature and causes of fracturing in the Cretaceous Austin chalk of south central Texas, many geologists and operators involved in horizontal drilling of the chalk consider regional rock stress as the probable main cause of the fractures. If Austin chalk fractures are mainly the result of regional extensional stress without localizing factors, then fractured sweet spots are randomly distributed and successful exploration is more or less a matter of luck, usually dependent upon the coincidental placement of a seismic line. But if local, deep-seated structure or basement topography are the main causes of sweet spots, then a successful exploration method would be to first delineate the basement paleo structure or topography and secondly, place a seismic line to confirm the delineated features. Finding localities of maximum fracturing and production would than be based on scientific logic rather than luck. It is the purpose of this article to present the results of an examination of these alternative causes for the Austin chalk fracturing in the hope of determining the most cost effective exploration method for the fractured chalk reservoir.

  18. Cretaceous rudist-reefs of the Mediterranean realm

    SciTech Connect

    Philip, J.M. )

    1988-08-01

    Cretaceous rudist-reefs are well represented in the Mediterranean region on outcrops, and several subsurface examples are major hydrocarbon reservoirs. Most rudist reefs are part of large carbonate platforms and show both ecologic and sedimentologic zonation; localized rudist banks are rare and are confined to perideltaic environments. Rudists are the major builders, but rich fauna and flora accompany them. Together, these components produced large amounts of bioclastic debris that accumulated on reef slopes as grain-flow and debris-flow deposits. Much of the primary porosity was occluded by micritic matrix and early cements, but dissolution of the aragonitic rudist skeleton and dolomitization can produce extensive secondary porosity. Reefs appears in the Aptian, reach their acme in the Cenomanian and Senonian, but are missing in the Turonian. The early Turonian disappearance is probably the result of changes in global ocean circulation, and the Maestrichtian demise correlates with a sea level fall. Three reef provinces are recognizable: (1) western Mediterranean corresponding to the passive margins of Sardinia and Aquitain-Pyrenees-Iberia; (2) African including Maghreb and the Middle East; and (3) central Mediterranean composed of the Italian, Dinaric, Hellenic, and Turkish platforms separated from the western Mediterranean by the Alpine geosyncline.

  19. The debate over the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alvarez, W.; Asaro, F.; Alvarez, L. W.; Michel, H. V.

    1988-01-01

    Large-body impact on the Earth is a rare but indisputable geologic process. The impact rate is approximately known from objects discovered in Earth-crossing orbits and from the statistics of craters on the Earth's surface. Tektite and microtektite strewn fields constitute unmistakable ejecta deposits that can be due only to large-body impacts. The Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary coincides with an unusually severe biological trauma, and this stratigraphic horizon is marked on a worldwide basis by anomalous concentrations of noble metals in chondritic proportions, mineral spherules with relict quench-crystallization textures, and mineral and rock grains showing shock deformation. These features are precisely compatible with an impact origin. Although only impact explains all the types of K-T boundary evidence, the story may not be as simple as once thought. The original hypothesis envisioned one large impact, triggering one great extinction. Newer evidence hints at various complications. Different challenges are faced by the occupants of each apex of a three-cornered argument over the K-T event. Proponents of a non-impact explanation must show that the evidence fits their preferred model better than it fits the impact scenario. Proponents of the single impact-single extinction view must explain away the complications. Proponents of a more complex impact crisis must develop a reasonable scenario which honors the new evidence.

  20. Turkana Grits - a Cretaceous braided alluvial system in northern Kenya

    SciTech Connect

    Handford, C.R.

    1987-05-01

    Rather spotty but excellent exposures of the Cretaceous-age Turkana Grits occur near the western shore of Lake Turkana, northern Kenya. These very coarse to pebbly arkosic sandstones and sandy conglomerates were derived from and rest unconformably upon Precambrian metamorphic basement; they are overlain by late Tertiary basaltic flows that comprise much of the volcanics in the East African Rift Zone. The formation ranges up to 2000 ft thick in the Laburr Range. Several outcrops contain sauropod, crocodile, and tortoise remains as well as abundant trunks of petrified wood (Dryoxylon). Five major facies make up the Turkana Grits and record a major episode of continental fluvial deposition in basins flanked by Precambrian basement. Facies 1 is crudely stratified, cobble and boulder conglomerate (clast-supported); Facies 2 is crudely stratified pebble-cobble conglomerate and pebbly sandstone; Facies 3 is trough cross-bedded, very coarse sandstones containing fossils wood and vertebrate remains; Facies 4 is crudely stratified to massive sandstones with ironstone nodules; and Facies 5 is red, purple, and gray mudstone and mud shale with carbonate nodules. Facies 1 through 3 record deposition in proximal to medial braided-stream channel, longitudinal bar and dune complexes. Facies 4 is a lowland, hydromorphic paleosol, and Facies 5 represents overbank and abandoned channel-fill sedimentation in an alluvial plain.

  1. Wildfires and animal extinctions at the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adair, Robert K.

    2010-06-01

    Persuasive models of the ejection of material at high velocities from the Chicxulub asteroid impact marking the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary have led to the conclusion that upon return, that material, heated in passage through the upper atmosphere, generated a high level of infrared energy density over the Earth's surface. That radiant energy has been considered to be a direct source of universal wildfires, which were presumed to be a major cause of plant and animal species extinctions. The extinction of many animal species, especially the dinosaurs, has also been attributed to the immediate lethal effects of the radiation. I find that the absorption of the radiation by the atmosphere, by cloud formations, and by ejecta drifting in the lower atmosphere reduced the radiation at the surface to a level that cannot be expected to have generated universal fires. Although the reduced radiation will have likely caused severe injuries to many animals, such insults alone seem unlikely to have generated the overall species extinctions that have been deduced.

  2. First gut contents in a Cretaceous sea turtle

    PubMed Central

    Kear, Benjamin P

    2005-01-01

    Modern sea turtles utilize a variety of feeding strategies ranging from herbivory to omnivory. In contrast, the diets of fossil sea turtles are poorly known. This study reports the first direct evidence: inoceramid bivalve shell pieces (encased in phosphatic material) preserved within the body cavities of several small protostegid turtles (cf. Notochelone) from the Lower Cretaceous of Australia. The shell fragments are densely packed and approximately 5–20 mm across. Identical shell accumulations have been found within coprolite masses from the same deposits; these are of a correct size to have originated from Notochelone, and indicate that benthic molluscs were regular food items. The thin, flexible inoceramid shells (composed of organic material integrated into a prismatic calcite framework) appear to have been bitten into segments and ingested, presumably in conjunction with visceral/mantle tissues and encrusting organisms. Although protostegids have been elsewhere interpreted as potential molluscivores, their primitive limb morphology is thought to have limited them to surface feeding. However, the evidence here that at least some forms were able to utilize benthic invertebrate prey indicates that, like modern sea turtles, protostegids probably exhibited a much broader range of feeding habits. PMID:17148341

  3. Tertiary Magmatism on the Early Cretaceous Ontong Java Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coffin, M. F.; Inoue, H.; Mochizuki, K.; Nakamura, Y.; Kroenke, L.

    2008-12-01

    The Ontong Java Plateau (OJP) in the western equatorial Pacific is the largest flood basalt province, or large igneous province (LIP), known in the oceans. Although the bulk of the OJP is believed to have formed in Early Cretaceous time, ca. 122 Ma, ca, 90 Ma basalts have also been recovered from the OJP and obducted OJP sections in the Solomon Islands. Still younger igneous rock is found in the Solomon Islands (Tejada et al., 1996), and the submarine plateau is itself surmounted by atolls, seamounts, and other features of presumed igneous origin, for which age data are lacking. To investigate this apparently younger igneous activity on the OJP itself, we have identified submarine lava flows and/or a volcaniclastic apron around Tauu Atoll on the southwestern OJP using seismic reflection data. Through stratigraphic correlation with Deep Sea Drilling Project and Ocean Drilling Program sites, we interpret the age of the igneous activity that created Tauu Atoll to be Middle Eocene to Miocene. Through similar seismic identification and stratigraphic correlation, we interpret an Oligocene to Miocene age for three hydrothermal vents in the central OJP. On the northwestern margin of the OJP, an unnamed seamount likely represents impingement of the much younger Caroline hotspot with the OJP. More seismic reflection and/or drilling data will be required to date Ontong Java Atoll, one of the largest atolls on the globe, as well as the many other atolls and seamounts surmounting the OJP.

  4. Exceptionally well-preserved Cretaceous microfossils reveal new biomineralization styles.

    PubMed

    Wendler, Jens E; Bown, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Calcareous microplankton shells form the dominant components of ancient and modern pelagic sea-floor carbonates and are widely used in palaeoenvironmental reconstructions. The efficacy of these applications, however, is dependent upon minimal geochemical alteration during diagenesis, but these modifying processes are poorly understood. Here we report on new biomineralization architectures of previously unsuspected complexity in calcareous cell-wall coverings of extinct dinoflagellates (pithonellids) from a Tanzanian microfossil-lagerstätte. These Cretaceous 'calcispheres' have previously been considered biomineralogically unremarkable but our new observations show that the true nature of these tests has been masked by recrystallization. The pristine Tanzanian fossils are formed from fibre-like crystallites and show archeopyles and exquisitely constructed opercula, demonstrating the dinoflagellate affinity of pithonellids, which has long been uncertain. The interwoven fibre-like structures provide strength and flexibility enhancing the protective function of these tests. The low-density wall fabrics may represent specific adaptation for oceanic encystment life cycles, preventing the cells from rapid sinking. PMID:23774480

  5. Biostratigraphy of Late Cretaceous carbonate platforms based on larger foraminifera: the Late Cretaceous shallow benthic zones (LKSBZ)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caus, Esmeralda; Parente, Mariano; Albrich, Sergi; Boix, Carme; Consorti, Lorenzo; Di Lucia, Matteo; Frijia, Gianluca; Robles, Raquel; Villalonga, Raquel

    2014-05-01

    The larger foraminifera are single-celled organisms extremely abundant and diverse in tropical-to-subtropical shallow-water oligotrophic-to- mesotrophic environments, especially in carbonate platforms. They cover all the environments within the platform, from the littoral areas to the lower limit of the photic zone. In the geological past, starting from the Late Carboniferous, the same ecological niches where inhabited by different assemblages that evolved in subsequent global community maturation cycles (GCMCs). These cycles are bounded by global palaeoenvironmental crises marked by increased extinction rates or even mass extinctions. This work focuses on the Late Cretaceous Global Community Maturation cycle (LKGCMC), which is bracketed between two mass extinction events: the Cenomanian-Turonian boundary event at the base and the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary event at the top. Ten shallow benthic zones (SBZs) are proposed for the time span going from the base of the Turonian up to the Maastrichtian-Danian boundary. A SBZ is a composite zone of parallel phylogenetic lineages that covers at least the most common facies realms of shallow-water deposits. Each zone corresponds to the "total range zone" of some larger foraminifera taxa, and is defined using integrated evidence on multiple first appearances and last occurrences of taxa from all available neritic palaeoenvironments. The new biozonaton is based on an extensive regional data set derived from well exposed shallow-water carbonate successions on both sides of the Pyrenees (Northern Spain and Southern France). The LKSBZ 1 corresponds to the earliest phase of the LKGCM cycle. This biozone is characterized by the presence of few Cenomanian survivors. The LKSBZs 2-4 are characterized by the great development of the structurally complex porcellaneous groups and the first diversification of rotaliids. The LKSBZ 5-10 are dominated by lamellar-perforate foraminifera, with three main groups: Orbitoidids

  6. Nuurcala obesa sp. n. (Blattida, Caloblattinidae) from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation in Liaoning Province, China

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chongda; Ren, Dong

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Nuurcala obesa sp. n., in the cockroach family Caloblattinidae, is described from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation (Liaoning Province, China) based on a combination of differential characters of fore- and hind wing venation, colouration and body structures. Systematically, Nuurcala (Vršanský, 2003), known from the Cretaceous sediments of Bon Tsagaan and Khurilt, Mongolia, is closely related to other genera of Caloblattinidae known from the Jurassic and Cretaceous localities in other parts of Asia. PMID:23950675

  7. Pre-, syn-, and postcollisional stratigraphic framework and provenance of upper triassic-upper cretaceous strata in the northwestern talkeetna mountains, alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hampton, B.A.; Ridgway, K.D.; O'Neill, J. M.; Gehrels, G.E.; Schmidt, J.; Blodgett, R.B.

    2007-01-01

    Mesozoic strata of the northwestern Talkeetna Mountains are located in a regional suture zone between the allochthonous Wrangellia composite terrane and the former Mesozoic continental margin of North America (i.e., the Yukon-Tanana terrane). New geologic mapping, measured stratigraphic sections, and provenance data define a distinct three-part stratigraphy for these strata. The lowermost unit is greater than 290 m thick and consists of Upper Triassic-Lower Jurassic mafic lavas, fossiliferous limestone, and a volcaniclastic unit that collectively we informally refer to as the Honolulu Pass formation. The uppermost 75 m of the Honolulu Pass formation represent a condensed stratigraphic interval that records limited sedimentation over a period of up to ca. 25 m.y. during Early Jurassic time. The contact between the Honolulu Pass formation and the overlying Upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous clastic marine strata of the Kahiltna assemblage represents a ca. 20 m.y. depositional hiatus that spans the Middle Jurassic and part of Late Jurassic time. The Kahiltna assemblage may to be up to 3000 m thick and contains detrital zircons that have a robust U-Pb peak probability age of 119.2 Ma (i.e., minimum crystallization age/maximum depositional age). These data suggest that the upper age of the Kahiltna assemblage may be a minimum of 10-15 m.y. younger than the previously reported upper age of Valanginian. Sandstone composition (Q-43% F-30% L-27%-Lv-71% Lm-18% Ls-11%) and U-Pb detrital zircon ages suggest that the Kahiltna assemblage received igneous detritus mainly from the active Chisana arc, remnant Chitina and Talkeetna arcs, and Permian-Triassic plutons (Alexander terrane) of the Wrangellia composite terrane. Other sources of detritus for the Kahiltna assemblage were Upper Triassic-Lower Jurassic plutons of the Taylor Mountains batholith and Devonian-Mississippian plutons; both of these source areas are part of the Yukon-Tanana terrane. The Kahiltna assemblage is overlain

  8. Thermal history of the Maramureş area (Northern Romania) constrained by zircon fission track analysis: Cretaceous metamorphism and Late Cretaceous to Paleocene exhumation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gröger, Heike R.; Tischler, Matthias; Fügenschuh, Bernhard; Schmid, Stefan M.

    2013-10-01

    This study presents zircon fission track data from the Bucovinian nappe stack (northern part of the Inner Eastern Carpathians, Rodna Mountains) and a neighbouring part of the Biharia nappe system (Preluca massif) in order to unravel the thermal history of the area and its structural evolution by integrating the fission track data with published data on the tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the area. The increase of metamorphic temperatures towards the SW detected by the zircon fission track data suggests SW-wards increasing tectonic overburden (up to at least 15 km) and hence top NE thrusting. Sub-greenschist facies conditions during the Alpine metamorphic overprint only caused partial annealing of fission tracks in zircon in the external main chain of the Central Eastern Carpathians. Full annealing of zircon points to at least 300 °C in the more internal elements (Rodna Mountains and Preluca massif). The zircon fission track central and single grain ages largely reflect Late Cretaceous cooling and exhumation. A combination of fission track data and stratigraphic constraints points to predominantly tectonic differential exhumation by some 7-11 km, connected to massive Late Cretaceous extension not yet detected in the area. Later events such as the latest Cretaceous ("Laramian") juxtaposition of the nappe pile with the internal Moldavides, causing exhumation by erosion, re-burial by sedimentation and tectonic loading during the Cenozoic had no impact on the zircon fission track data; unfortunately it prevented a study of the low temperature part of the Late Cretaceous exhumation history.

  9. Palynologically calibrated vertebrate record from North Dakota consistent with abrupt dinosaur extinction at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pearson, D.A.; Schaefer, T.; Johnson, K.R.; Nichols, D.J.

    2001-01-01

    New data from 17 Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary sections and 53 vertebrate sites in the Hell Creek and Fort Union Formations in southwestern North Dakota document a 1.76 m barren interval between the highest Cretaceous vertebrate fossils and the palynologically recognized K-T boundary. The boundary is above the formational contact at 15 localities and coincident with it at two, demonstrating that the formational contact is diachronous. Dinosaurs are common in the highest Cretaceous vertebrate samples and a partial dinosaur skeleton in the Fort Union Formation is the highest recorded Cretaceous vertebrate fossil in this area.

  10. Biodiversity changes in Cretaceous palynofloras of eastern Asia and western North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, D.J.

    2003-01-01

    Palynology has great potential for providing comparative data and interpretations about changes in biodiversity during the Cretaceous Period. This is especially true for both eastern Asia and western North America because of strong floristic similarities that existed between these regions during Cretaceous time. Also, because palynomorphs of terrestrial origin can be deposited in offshore as well as terrestrial environments, significant potential exists for marine-to-continental palynostratigraphic correlations in both regions. Palynological biostratigraphy can improve the geologic dating of changes in biodiversity. During the Early Cretaceous, eastern Asia and western North America lay within the Cerebropollenites palynofloral province, a circumpolar phytogeographic zone characterized by distinctive palynological assemblages. During most of the Late Cretaceous, these regions lay within the palynofloristically unique Aquilapollenites Province, which was more restricted geographically than the Cerebropollenites Province. The most important development during Cretaceous time that is reflected in palynological assemblages was the rise of the angiosperms as the numerically and ecologically dominant forms of vegetation. The most striking short-term palynofloral event in the two regions was the sudden disappearance of species of Aquilapollenites and associated genera at the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K/T) boundary. Both of these occurrences produced major changes in biodiversity in the terrestrial realm. Geologic research in International Geological Correlation Program Project 434 can benefit from applications of palynostratigraphy. Palynologic research within Project 434 could include development of a comprehensive palynostratigraphic zonation for the Cretaceous, the definition of regional palynostratigraphic datums, and investigation of the record of floral change at the K/T boundary. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. The Lower Cretaceous strata in Svalbard and the Barents Sea; basin infill dynamics and palaeobathymetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Midtkandal, Ivar; Faleide, Jan Inge; Evensen Dahlberg, Maria; Dimitriou, Myrsini; Petter Nystuen, Johan

    2014-05-01

    Data from cliff sections on Svalbard and seismic sections from the Barents Sea indicate an Early Cretaceous depositional system of far greater reach than the Svalbard archipelago, with a source area to the northwest of Svalbard and a basin deepening to the southeast in the western Barents Sea. Seismic imagery shows large-scale, low-angle clinoforms that demonstrate progradation of shallow-marine clastic deposits hundreds of kilometres into the present day Barents Sea, sourced from areas near the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP) to the northwest. Field data and seismic imagery are coupled to map architectural patterns that provide information on basin physiography and scale. The results of the study show that the sediment infill of the epicontinental basin was largely controlled by availability of accommodation space, and how the formation of localized syn- and post-depositional troughs and highs altered the position and orientation of the Early Cretaceous shoreline, and thereby its corresponding facies distribution. The Early Cretaceous accommodation space covering a wider part of the Barents Shelf, was created by regional subsidence of a possible deep-seated origin. In the SW Barents Sea additional accommodation space was formed by prominent rift events during Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous times. Cenozoic uplift and erosion, increasing northwards, has removed most of the Lower Cretaceous strata in the NW Barents Sea. Thus, a direct tie between the prograding units in the southern Barents Sea and the exposed more proximal Lower Cretaceous strata on Svalbard is not possible. An on-going analysis of seismic profiles along with well data will provide new constraints for estimating palaeo-water depths and facies distribution for the Cretaceous in the Barents Sea.

  12. Source rock in the lower Tertiary and Cretaceous, deep-water Gulf of Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, B.E.; Sofer, Z.; Claxton, B.L.

    1994-12-31

    The MC-84 (King) well was drilled in the deep-water Gulf of Mexico in 1993, in Mississippi Canyon Block 84 in a water depth of 5,149 ft. This well drilled an anticlinal feature. The well penetrated an Upper Cretaceous section and crossed Middle Cretaceous Unconformity with final total depth in the Lower Cenomanian. Numerous sidewall cores were taken throughout the Lower Tertiary and Cretaceous. Six of the sidewall cores (from 14,230 to 15,170 ft subsea) are organic rich and contain Type II oil-prone kerogen (TOC values from 2.6 to 5.2% and hydrogen indices from 360 to 543 ppm). The Lower Tertiary through Lower Cenomianian section is thermally immature for oil generation, on the basis of biomarker ratios and vitrinite reflectance measurements. Organic extracts from cores in the Cretaceous section had biomarker characteristics similar to oil recovered from the Miocene in the MC-84 well. The oil was generated from a similar but more mature source rock, probably of Early Cretaceous age. Results of thermal modeling indicate that the only section thermally mature for oil generation is in the lower portion of the Lower Cretaceous, below the total depth of the well. The model also indicates that the organic-rich section equivalent to that penetrated by the MC-84 well could be mature farther to the north, where water depths are shallower, overburden thickness is greater, and heat flow is higher. Late Tertiary sediment loading in this area, primarily during the Miocene, is probably the driving mechanism for hydrocarbon generation from the Cretaceous (and possibly the Lower Tertiary) potential source rocks. This offers a favorable geological setting for capturing hydrocarbons because reservoirs and traps associated with Miocene deposition and subsequent loading-induced salt movement had formed prior to the onset of oil generation and migration.

  13. Mass extinction of birds at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary.

    PubMed

    Longrich, Nicholas R; Tokaryk, Tim; Field, Daniel J

    2011-09-13

    The effect of the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) (formerly Cretaceous-Tertiary, K-T) mass extinction on avian evolution is debated, primarily because of the poor fossil record of Late Cretaceous birds. In particular, it remains unclear whether archaic birds became extinct gradually over the course of the Cretaceous or whether they remained diverse up to the end of the Cretaceous and perished in the K-Pg mass extinction. Here, we describe a diverse avifauna from the latest Maastrichtian of western North America, which provides definitive evidence for the persistence of a range of archaic birds to within 300,000 y of the K-Pg boundary. A total of 17 species are identified, including 7 species of archaic bird, representing Enantiornithes, Ichthyornithes, Hesperornithes, and an Apsaravis-like bird. None of these groups are known to survive into the Paleogene, and their persistence into the latest Maastrichtian therefore provides strong evidence for a mass extinction of archaic birds coinciding with the Chicxulub asteroid impact. Most of the birds described here represent advanced ornithurines, showing that a major radiation of Ornithurae preceded the end of the Cretaceous, but none can be definitively referred to the Neornithes. This avifauna is the most diverse known from the Late Cretaceous, and although size disparity is lower than in modern birds, the assemblage includes both smaller forms and some of the largest volant birds known from the Mesozoic, emphasizing the degree to which avian diversification had proceeded by the end of the age of dinosaurs. PMID:21914849

  14. A formicine in New Jersey Cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and early evolution of the ants

    PubMed Central

    Grimaldi, David; Agosti, Donat

    2000-01-01

    A worker ant preserved with microscopic detail has been discovered in Turonian-aged New Jersey amber [ca. 92 mega-annum (Ma)]. The apex of the gaster has an acidopore and, thus, allows definitive assignment of the fossil to the large extant subfamily Formicinae, members of which use a defensive spray of formic acid. This specimen is the only Cretaceous record of the subfamily, and only two other fossil ants are known from the Cretaceous that unequivocally belong to an extant subfamily (Brownimecia and Canapone of the Ponerinae, in New Jersey and Canadian amber, respectively). In lieu of a cladogram of formicine genera, generalized morphology of this fossil suggests a basal position in the subfamily. Formicinae and Ponerinae in the mid Cretaceous indicate divergence of basal lineages of ants near the Albian (ca. 105–110 Ma) when they presumably diverged from the Sphecomyrminae. Sphecomyrmines are the plesiomorphic sister group to all other ants, or they are a paraphyletic stem group ancestral to all other ants—they apparently became extinct in the Late Cretaceous. Ant abundance in major deposits of Cretaceous and Tertiary insects indicates that they did not become common and presumably dominant in terrestrial ecosystems until the Eocene (ca. 45 Ma). It is at this time that modern genera that form very large colonies (at least 10,000 individuals) first appear. During the Cretaceous, eusocial termites, bees, and vespid wasps also first appear—they show a similar pattern of diversification and proliferation in the Tertiary. The Cretaceous ants have further implications for interpreting distributions of modern ants. PMID:11078527

  15. Small theropod teeth from the Late Cretaceous of the San Juan Basin, northwestern New Mexico and their implications for understanding latest Cretaceous dinosaur evolution.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Thomas E; Brusatte, Stephen L

    2014-01-01

    Studying the evolution and biogeographic distribution of dinosaurs during the latest Cretaceous is critical for better understanding the end-Cretaceous extinction event that killed off all non-avian dinosaurs. Western North America contains among the best records of Late Cretaceous terrestrial vertebrates in the world, but is biased against small-bodied dinosaurs. Isolated teeth are the primary evidence for understanding the diversity and evolution of small-bodied theropod dinosaurs during the Late Cretaceous, but few such specimens have been well documented from outside of the northern Rockies, making it difficult to assess Late Cretaceous dinosaur diversity and biogeographic patterns. We describe small theropod teeth from the San Juan Basin of northwestern New Mexico. These specimens were collected from strata spanning Santonian - Maastrichtian. We grouped isolated theropod teeth into several morphotypes, which we assigned to higher-level theropod clades based on possession of phylogenetic synapomorphies. We then used principal components analysis and discriminant function analyses to gauge whether the San Juan Basin teeth overlap with, or are quantitatively distinct from, similar tooth morphotypes from other geographic areas. The San Juan Basin contains a diverse record of small theropods. Late Campanian assemblages differ from approximately coeval assemblages of the northern Rockies in being less diverse with only rare representatives of troodontids and a Dromaeosaurus-like taxon. We also provide evidence that erect and recurved morphs of a Richardoestesia-like taxon represent a single heterodont species. A late Maastrichtian assemblage is dominated by a distinct troodontid. The differences between northern and southern faunas based on isolated theropod teeth provide evidence for provinciality in the late Campanian and the late Maastrichtian of North America. However, there is no indication that major components of small-bodied theropod diversity were lost

  16. Novel Insect Leaf-Mining after the End-Cretaceous Extinction and the Demise of Cretaceous Leaf Miners, Great Plains, USA

    PubMed Central

    Donovan, Michael P.; Wilf, Peter; Labandeira, Conrad C.; Johnson, Kirk R.; Peppe, Daniel J.

    2014-01-01

    Plant and associated insect-damage diversity in the western U.S.A. decreased significantly at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary and remained low until the late Paleocene. However, the Mexican Hat locality (ca. 65 Ma) in southeastern Montana, with a typical, low-diversity flora, uniquely exhibits high damage diversity on nearly all its host plants, when compared to all known local and regional early Paleocene sites. The same plant species show minimal damage elsewhere during the early Paleocene. We asked whether the high insect damage diversity at Mexican Hat was more likely related to the survival of Cretaceous insects from refugia or to an influx of novel Paleocene taxa. We compared damage on 1073 leaf fossils from Mexican Hat to over 9000 terminal Cretaceous leaf fossils from the Hell Creek Formation of nearby southwestern North Dakota and to over 9000 Paleocene leaf fossils from the Fort Union Formation in North Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming. We described the entire insect-feeding ichnofauna at Mexican Hat and focused our analysis on leaf mines because they are typically host-specialized and preserve a number of diagnostic morphological characters. Nine mine damage types attributable to three of the four orders of leaf-mining insects are found at Mexican Hat, six of them so far unique to the site. We found no evidence linking any of the diverse Hell Creek mines with those found at Mexican Hat, nor for the survival of any Cretaceous leaf miners over the K-Pg boundary regionally, even on well-sampled, surviving plant families. Overall, our results strongly relate the high damage diversity on the depauperate Mexican Hat flora to an influx of novel insect herbivores during the early Paleocene, possibly caused by a transient warming event and range expansion, and indicate drastic extinction rather than survivorship of Cretaceous insect taxa from refugia. PMID:25058404

  17. Small Theropod Teeth from the Late Cretaceous of the San Juan Basin, Northwestern New Mexico and Their Implications for Understanding Latest Cretaceous Dinosaur Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Thomas E.; Brusatte, Stephen L.

    2014-01-01

    Studying the evolution and biogeographic distribution of dinosaurs during the latest Cretaceous is critical for better understanding the end-Cretaceous extinction event that killed off all non-avian dinosaurs. Western North America contains among the best records of Late Cretaceous terrestrial vertebrates in the world, but is biased against small-bodied dinosaurs. Isolated teeth are the primary evidence for understanding the diversity and evolution of small-bodied theropod dinosaurs during the Late Cretaceous, but few such specimens have been well documented from outside of the northern Rockies, making it difficult to assess Late Cretaceous dinosaur diversity and biogeographic patterns. We describe small theropod teeth from the San Juan Basin of northwestern New Mexico. These specimens were collected from strata spanning Santonian – Maastrichtian. We grouped isolated theropod teeth into several morphotypes, which we assigned to higher-level theropod clades based on possession of phylogenetic synapomorphies. We then used principal components analysis and discriminant function analyses to gauge whether the San Juan Basin teeth overlap with, or are quantitatively distinct from, similar tooth morphotypes from other geographic areas. The San Juan Basin contains a diverse record of small theropods. Late Campanian assemblages differ from approximately co-eval assemblages of the northern Rockies in being less diverse with only rare representatives of troodontids and a Dromaeosaurus-like taxon. We also provide evidence that erect and recurved morphs of a Richardoestesia-like taxon represent a single heterodont species. A late Maastrichtian assemblage is dominated by a distinct troodontid. The differences between northern and southern faunas based on isolated theropod teeth provide evidence for provinciality in the late Campanian and the late Maastrichtian of North America. However, there is no indication that major components of small-bodied theropod diversity were lost

  18. Novel insect leaf-mining after the end-Cretaceous extinction and the demise of cretaceous leaf miners, Great Plains, USA.

    PubMed

    Donovan, Michael P; Wilf, Peter; Labandeira, Conrad C; Johnson, Kirk R; Peppe, Daniel J

    2014-01-01

    Plant and associated insect-damage diversity in the western U.S.A. decreased significantly at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary and remained low until the late Paleocene. However, the Mexican Hat locality (ca. 65 Ma) in southeastern Montana, with a typical, low-diversity flora, uniquely exhibits high damage diversity on nearly all its host plants, when compared to all known local and regional early Paleocene sites. The same plant species show minimal damage elsewhere during the early Paleocene. We asked whether the high insect damage diversity at Mexican Hat was more likely related to the survival of Cretaceous insects from refugia or to an influx of novel Paleocene taxa. We compared damage on 1073 leaf fossils from Mexican Hat to over 9000 terminal Cretaceous leaf fossils from the Hell Creek Formation of nearby southwestern North Dakota and to over 9000 Paleocene leaf fossils from the Fort Union Formation in North Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming. We described the entire insect-feeding ichnofauna at Mexican Hat and focused our analysis on leaf mines because they are typically host-specialized and preserve a number of diagnostic morphological characters. Nine mine damage types attributable to three of the four orders of leaf-mining insects are found at Mexican Hat, six of them so far unique to the site. We found no evidence linking any of the diverse Hell Creek mines with those found at Mexican Hat, nor for the survival of any Cretaceous leaf miners over the K-Pg boundary regionally, even on well-sampled, surviving plant families. Overall, our results strongly relate the high damage diversity on the depauperate Mexican Hat flora to an influx of novel insect herbivores during the early Paleocene, possibly caused by a transient warming event and range expansion, and indicate drastic extinction rather than survivorship of Cretaceous insect taxa from refugia. PMID:25058404

  19. Model Calculations of Ocean Acidification at the End Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tyrrell, T.; Merico, A.; Armstrong McKay, D. I.

    2014-12-01

    Most episodes of ocean acidification (OA) in Earth's past were either too slow or too minor to provide useful lessons for understanding the present. The end-Cretaceous event (66 Mya) is special in this sense, both because of its rapid onset and also because many calcifying species (including 100% of ammonites and >95% of calcareous nannoplankton and planktonic foraminifera) went extinct at this time. We used box models of the ocean carbon cycle to evaluate whether impact-generated OA could feasibly have been responsible for the calcifier mass extinctions. We simulated several proposed consequences of the asteroid impact: (1) vaporisation of gypsum (CaSO4) and carbonate (CaCO3) rocks at the point of impact, producing sulphuric acid and CO2 respectively; (2) generation of NOx by the impact pressure wave and other sources, producing nitric acid; (3) release of CO2 from wildfires, biomass decay and disinterring of fossil organic carbon and hydrocarbons; and (4) ocean stirring leading to introduction into the surface layer of deep water with elevated CO2. We simulated additions over: (A) a few years (e-folding time of 6 months), and also (B) a few days (e-folding time of 10 hours) for SO4 and NOx, as recently proposed by Ohno et al (2014. Nature Geoscience, 7:279-282). Sulphuric acid as a consequence of gypsum vaporisation was found to be the most important acidifying process. Results will also be presented of the amounts of SO4 required to make the surface ocean become extremely undersaturated (Ωcalcite<0.5) for different e-folding times and combinations of processes. These will be compared to estimates in the literature of how much SO4 was actually released.

  20. Paleogeography of Cretaceous ammonoids of the Pacific coast of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jagt-Yazykova, E. A.; Zonova, T. D.

    2012-05-01

    This work presents the results of a study of the biogeographical distribution of Late Albian-Maastrichtian ammonites, found in sequences of the Pacific coast of Russia. The taxa typical of the Pacific Realm were identified, and their distribution traced beyond the borders of this region. In addition, species-migrants, distributed within the studied area were established. As a results of our works, a high level of endemism of ammonite fauna of the East of Russia was noted (75-88% of endemic species, on average). The bipolarity, previously established in the distribution of ammonoids within the Pacific Paleobiogeographical Realm, as well as their high regional provincialism, was confirmed. The following division of the studied area into faunal ammonite provinces in the Late Cretaceous was proposed: Arctic Province; Boreal-Pacific Province, including northeastern Russia (Chukotka Peninsula, the Koryak Upland, Penzhyna Gulf) and the boreal coast of North America (Alaska Peninsula, Arctic Canada and British Columbia); Northwest Pacific Province, including the Primorye Territory, Sakhalin and Shikotan Islands, the Japanese Islands; Northeast Province of the Pacific (the western coast of the United States and Mexico); Southwest Pacific (Australia, New Zealand, Oceania) and Southeast (the western coast of South America and Antarctica, Seymour and James Ross Islands) Provinces. This division is confirmed by data on inoceramid species. In addition, levels of global transgressions and general sea level rise, associated with the appearances of most of widespread marine taxa in the Pacific shelf seas, are established. These include Late Albian, Cenomanian-Turonian boundary, Late Coniacian, Late Campanian, Early-Late Maastrichtian boundary. Moreover, migration of ammonites occurred due to the Tethys Ocean extension and followed the northern sea straits in the Arctic Ocean and within the Pacific Realm, depending on warm currents. Both the counter and one-way migrations were

  1. Molybdenum drawdown during Cretaceous Oceanic Anoxic Event 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldberg, Tatiana; Poulton, Simon W.; Wagner, Thomas; Kolonic, Sadat F.; Rehkämper, Mark

    2016-04-01

    During the Cretaceous greenhouse, episodes of widespread ocean deoxygenation were associated with globally occurring events of black shale deposition. Possibly the most pronounced of these oceanic anoxic events (OAE's) was the Cenomanian-Turonian OAE2 (∼94 Ma). However, although certain redox sensitive trace metals tend to be preferentially sequestered in sediments deposited under anoxic conditions, with Mo drawdown being specifically prone to euxinic settings, these elements are generally somewhat depleted in sediments deposited during OAE2. To understand the driving factors responsible for this depleted trace metal drawdown, we have studied a low latitude section from the proto-North Atlantic Ocean (Tarfaya S57), where existing biomarker and iron-sulphur data point to a dominantly euxinic water column, with periodic transitions to ferruginous (Fe-rich) water column conditions. We utilise a variety of redox proxies (Fe-speciation, redox sensitive trace metals and Mo isotopes), which, in combination, allows us to evaluate the detailed nature of ocean redox conditions and hence controls on trace metal drawdown. The results suggest that seawater δ98Mo values may have ranged between ∼0.6 and 1.1‰ during OAE2, likely connected to changes in the local Mo reservoir as a consequence of low and probably heterogeneous concentrations of Mo in the ocean. The very low Mo/TOC ratios at Tarfaya and elsewhere in the proto-North Atlantic may support a model in which deep-water circulation was partially restricted within and between the North Atlantic and other ocean basins. We propose that the combination of a low and possibly heterogeneous δ98Mo of seawater Mo, together with low Mo/TOC ratios, points to a large decrease in the global oceanic Mo reservoir during OAE2, reflecting a major global scale increase in Mo drawdown under persistent euxinic conditions.

  2. Magnetic characterization of Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villasante-Marcos, Víctor; Martínez-Ruiz, Francisca; Osete, María Luisa; Urrutia-Fucugauchi, Jaime

    Rock magnetic properties across several K-T boundary sections have been investigated to reveal any possible magnetic signature associated with the remains of the impact event at the end of the Cretaceous. Studied sections' locations vary in distance to the Chicxulub structure from distal (Agost and Caravaca, Spain), through closer (ODP Hole 1049A, Blake Nose, North Atlantic), to proximal (El Mimbral and La Lajilla, Mexico). A clear magnetic signature is associated with the fireball layer in the most distal sections, consisting of a sharp increase in susceptibility and saturation isothermal remanent magnetization (SIRM), and a decrease in remanence coercivity. Magnetic properties in these sections point to a distinctive ferrimagnetic phase, probably corresponding to the reported Mg- and Ni-rich, highly oxidized spinels of meteoritic origin. At closer and proximal sections magnetic properties are different. Although there is an increase in susceptibility and SIRM associated with a rusty layer placed on top of the siliciclastic deposit in proximal sections, and with a similar limonitic layer on top of the spherule bed that defines the boundary at Blake Nose, the magnetic properties indicate a mixture of iron oxyhydroxides dominated by fine-grained goethite. Based on previous geochemical studies at Blake Nose and new geochemical and PGE abundance measurements performed in this work at El Mimbral, this goethite-rich layer can be interpreted as an effect of diagenetic remobilization and precipitation of Fe. There is not enough evidence to assert that this Fe concentration layer at proximal sections is directly related to deposition of fine meteoritic material. Magnetic, geochemical, and iridium data reject it as a primary meteoritic phase.

  3. Morphological Analysis of Cretaceous-Paleogene Boundary Foraminiferal Taxa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikenas, M.; Hull, P. M.; Henehan, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    66 million years ago at the end of the Cretaceous period, an asteroid impact in the Gulf of Mexico triggered the sudden extinction of an estimated 50% of marine invertebrate species. The event profoundly affected planktonic foraminifera, marine protists with an excellent fossil records in open marine sediments. The mass extinction and expansive fossil record of foraminifera creates the opportunity for detailed studies of the way species and ecosystems evolve and respond to environmental changes. Community level research is, however, relatively rare compared to geochemical paleoceanographic approaches. This is due, in part, to the fact that community level data collection is labor intensive and only partially records all aspects of the biological response. Here, I use a new approach to quantify community change with a computer-controlled microscope able to take high-resolution images of thousands of foraminifera at a time. Analytical software is used to classify populations by morphology, and this data is compared with traditional assemblage counts from multiple oceanic core sites from the late Maastrichtian to the early Danian. Previous studies have suggested that certain phenotypic characteristics are related to ecological niches -here, the direct measurement of shape of large populations of foraminifera is used to research the possible correlation between the K-Pg boundary events and community structure. Continued study of morphological data can be used to investigate the evolution of foraminiferal phenotypes, the connection between shape and ecological behavior, and the changes they exhibit in response to both sudden and long term changes in climate such as occurred near the K/Pg boundary. The image database of Maastrichtian and early Danian foraminifera will be made available to the scientific community, enabling inter-lab and cross-site comparisons.

  4. Diagenesis of upper Cretaceous Teapot sandstones, Powder River basin, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Conner, S.P.; Tieh, T.T.

    1984-04-01

    The Upper Cretaceous Teapot sandstones of Well Draw field, Converse County, Wyoming, are turbidite fan deposits bounded stratigraphically by marine shales. They presently occur from 6360 to 7200 ft (1920 to 2195 m), dipping to the northwest. Cored samples selected from nonbioturbated A bedsets show that the sandstones are fine to very fine-grained feldspathic litharenites. Major authigenic minerals include carbonate cement, quartz overgrowths, and clay minerals. The clay minerals originated either as alteration rims on detrital silicates or as precipitated from pore fluids. Alteration rims typically consist of illite, smectite, mixed layer illite/smectite, and lesser chlorite. Feldspars are altered to kaolinite. Precipitated clays occur as thin, unoriented, grain coating chlorite and kaolinite; pore lining mixed layer illite/smectite and lesser chlorite oriented with (001) normal to the pore wall; and unoriented, poorly crystalline, pore filling chlorite. The diagenetic sequence is: compaction and limited quartz overgrowth development; complete calcite cementation and precipitation of grain-coating clays; dissolution of carbonate cement; precipitation of pore lining and later pore filling clays; and development of second stage quartz overgrowths. Development of silicate alteration rims occurred throughout the diagenetic history. Dissolution of carbonate cement produced the majority of present-day porosity; however, this secondary porosity was reduced by precipitation of clays minerals. In the downdip sandstones, hydrodynamic flow and an increase in the abundance of detrital labile grains have caused an increased abundance of clay mineral precipitates, reducing the reservoir potential. The pore fluids which controlled sandstones diagenesis were likely provided by dewatering and diagenesis of enclosing shales.

  5. Diagenetic processes in cretaceous sandstones from occidental Brazilian Equatorial Margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schrank, A. B. S.; De Ros, L. F.

    2015-11-01

    Despite a great interest in Brazilian Equatorial Margin exploration, very little was published on the diagenesis of sandstones from that area. A wide recognition petrographic study was performed to identify the major diagenetic processes that impacted the porosity of Lower Cretaceous sandstones of the Pará-Maranhão, São Luís, Bragança-Viseu and Barreirinhas basins. Arkoses from the Pará-Maranhão Basin show neoformed or infiltrated clay coatings, mica replacement and expansion by kaolinite and vermiculite, and precipitation of grain-replacive and pore-filling quartz, kaolinite, albite, chlorite, calcite, dolomite, siderite, pyrite and titanium oxides. Compaction, quartz and calcite cementation were the main porosity-reducing processes. Barreirinhas Basin lithic arkoses and subarkoses display clay coatings, compaction of metamorphic fragments into pseudomatrix, and precipitation of grain-replacive and pore-filling kaolinite, quartz, albite, chlorite, calcite, dolomite, TiO2 and pyrite. The main porosity-reducing processes were calcite cementation in the subarkoses, and compaction and quartz cementation in lithic arkoses. Quartzarenites from this basin were early- and pervasively cemented by dolomite. Arkoses and lithic arkoses of the São Luís and Bragança-Viseu basins show clay coatings, pseudomatrix from mud intraclasts compaction, and precipitation of pore-filling and grain-replacive kaolinite, vermiculite, smectite, quartz, albite, chlorite, illite, calcite, dolomite, hematite, TiO2 and pyrite. Compaction of mud intraclasts and dissolution of feldspars and heavy minerals were the main porosity-modification processes. These preliminary results may contribute to the understanding of the spatial and temporal distribution of the diagenetic processes and their impacts on the porosity of the sandstones from these basins.

  6. Cathodoluminescence of shocked quartz at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Owen, Michael R.; Anders, Mark H.

    1988-01-01

    Empirical studies have documented an association between rock type and the cathodoluminescence color of constituent quartz grains. Quartz from extrusive igneous sources luminesces uniform pale blue. Quartz from intrusive igneous and high-grade metamorphic rocks generally luminesces darker purple-blue, whereas quartz recrystallized under low-grade metamorphic conditions luminesces reddish-brown. Quartz grains in most sandstones luminesce a heterogeneous mixture of these colors because the grains were derived from a variety of ultimate source rocks. If shocked quartz found at the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary is volcanic in origin, its cathodoluminescence should be predominantly pale blue. Alternatively, quartz grains derived from bolide impact upon, and ejection of, mixed igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks should luminesce a variety of colors. Grain mounts of sand collected at the K-T boundary horizon from the Clear Creek North site in the Raton Basin, Colorado were examined. Shocked quartz luminesced a variety of colors and very few grains luminesced the pale blue color that is typical of volcanic quartz. It was concluded that the shocked quartz was derived from a petrologically diverse source region without substantial volcanic contribution. Most shocked grains apparently were derived from low-grade metamorphic rocks, with a slightly smaller contribution from high-grade metamorphic and intrusive igneous rocks. Rare quartz grains with brown-luminescing rims reflect a minor addition from detrital sedimentary sources. The apparent relative abundances of intrusive (and rare extrusive) igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary ultimate source rocks suggested by CL colors of shock-deformed quartz at the K-T boundary is consistent with a crustal/supracrustal origin for the grains.

  7. Reidentification of Avian Embryonic Remains from the Cretaceous of Mongolia

    PubMed Central

    Varricchio, David J.; Balanoff, Amy M.; Norell, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    Embryonic remains within a small (4.75 by 2.23 cm) egg from the Late Cretaceous, Mongolia are here re-described. High-resolution X-ray computed tomography (HRCT) was used to digitally prepare and describe the enclosed embryonic bones. The egg, IGM (Mongolian Institute for Geology, Ulaanbaatar) 100/2010, with a three-part shell microstructure, was originally assigned to Neoceratopsia implying extensive homoplasy among eggshell characters across Dinosauria. Re-examination finds the forelimb significantly longer than the hindlimbs, proportions suggesting an avian identification. Additional, postcranial apomorphies (strut-like coracoid, cranially located humeral condyles, olecranon fossa, slender radius relative to the ulna, trochanteric crest on the femur, and ulna longer than the humerus) identify the embryo as avian. Presence of a dorsal coracoid fossa and a craniocaudally compressed distal humerus with a strongly angled distal margin support a diagnosis of IGM 100/2010 as an enantiornithine. Re-identification eliminates the implied homoplasy of this tri-laminate eggshell structure, and instead associates enantiornithine birds with eggshell microstructure composed of a mammillary, squamatic, and external zones. Posture of the embryo follows that of other theropods with fore- and hindlimbs folded parallel to the vertebral column and the elbow pointing caudally just dorsal to the knees. The size of the egg and embryo of IGM 100/2010 is similar to the two other Mongolian enantiornithine eggs. Well-ossified skeletons, as in this specimen, characterize all known enantiornithine embryos suggesting precocial hatchlings, comparing closely to late stage embryos of modern precocial birds that are both flight- and run-capable upon hatching. Extensive ossification in enantiornithine embryos may contribute to their relatively abundant representation in the fossil record. Neoceratopsian eggs remain unrecognized in the fossil record. PMID:26030147

  8. Double fossilization in eukaryotic microorganisms from Lower Cretaceous amber

    PubMed Central

    Martín-González, Ana; Wierzchos, Jacek; Gutiérrez, Juan-Carlos; Alonso, Jesús; Ascaso, Carmen

    2009-01-01

    Background Microfossils are not only useful for elucidating biological macro- and microevolution but also the biogeochemical history of our planet. Pyritization is the most important and extensive mode of preservation of animals and especially of plants. Entrapping in amber, a fossilized resin, is considered an alternative mode of biological preservation. For the first time, the internal organization of 114-million-year-old microfossils entrapped in Lower Cretaceous amber is described and analyzed, using adapted scanning electron microscopy in backscattered electron mode in association with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy microanalysis. Double fossilization of several protists included in diverse taxonomical groups and some vegetal debris is described and analyzed. Results In protists without an exoskeleton or shell (ciliates, naked amoebae, flagellates), determinate structures, including the nuclei, surface envelopes (cortex or cytoplasmic membrane) and hyaloplasm are the main sites of pyritization. In protists with a biomineralized skeleton (diatoms), silicon was replaced by pyrite. Permineralization was the main mode of pyritization. Framboidal, subhedral and microcrystalline are the predominant pyrite textures detected in the cells. Abundant pyritized vegetal debris have also been found inside the amber nuggets and the surrounding sediments. This vegetal debris usually contained numerous pyrite framboids and very densely packed polycrystalline pyrite formations infilled with different elements of the secondary xylem. Conclusion Embedding in amber and pyritization are not always alternative modes of biological preservation during geological times, but double fossilization is possible under certain environmental conditions. Pyritization in protists shows a quite different pattern with regard to plants, due to the different composition and cellular architecture in these microorganisms and organisms. Anaerobic sulphate-reducing bacteria could play a crucial

  9. (Very) long wavelength deformations of Africa since late Cretaceous times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillocheau, Francois; The Topoafrica Working Group

    2014-05-01

    The African continent is characterized by a bimodal topography. The 900-1100m elevation peak mainly corresponds to the Southern African (Kalahari Plateau) and the East African Domes, whereas the 300-400 m peak is the mean elevation of the Sahara. Those reliefs are characterized by very long wavelength (x1000 km), similar to the scale of mantle dynamics. The origin of this relief, dynamic topography or more local controls (e.g. old lithospheric inheritance), are highly debated and more geological controls are required. To answer those questions - in the frame of the TopoAfrica project - we performed a geomorphical study of Africa coupled with the tectono-sedimentary study of the sedimentary basins or the magmatism. (1) Most of the African reliefs are younger than the Early-Middle Eocene (55-40 Ma). (2) The only significative old relief of Africa is the Southern African Plateau that experienced a two steps evolution, a first uplift during Late Cretaceous contemporaneous with high erosion under humid climatic conditions, followed by a second uplift during Late Eocene - Early Oligocene. The present-day arid to semi-arid climate could explain its preservation. (3) Most of Africa is uplifted during Miocene times (20-10 Ma), age of most of the present-day reliefs. (4) The African magmatic provinces (Virunga-Kivu, Cameroon Volcanic Line, Hoggar, Aïr…) are associated with local uplifts that started around Late Eocene times (40-35 Ma). The relationships of those reliefs with the migration of the African plate over the African superswell will be discussed.

  10. The global Cretaceous-Tertiary fire: Biomass or fossil carbon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilmour, Iain; Guenther, Frank

    1988-01-01

    The global soot layer at the K-T boundary indicates a major fire triggered by meteorite impact. However, it is not clear whether the principal fuel was biomass or fossil carbon. Forests are favored by delta value of C-13, which is close to the average for trees, but the total amount of elemental C is approximately 10 percent of the present living carbon, and thus requires very efficient conversion to soot. The PAH was analyzed at Woodside Creek, in the hope of finding a diagnostic molecular marker. A promising candidate is 1-methyl-7-isopropyl phenanthrene (retene,), which is probably derived by low temperature degradation of abietic acid. Unlike other PAH that form by pyrosynthesis at higher temperatures, retene has retained the characteristic side chains of its parent molecule. A total of 11 PAH compounds were identified in the boundary clay. Retene is present in substantial abundance. The identification was confirmed by analysis of a retene standard. Retene is characteristic of the combustion of resinous higher plants. Its formation depends on both temperature and oxygen access, and is apparently highest in oxygen-poor fires. Such fires would also produce soot more efficiently which may explain the high soot abundance. The relatively high level of coronene is not typical of a wood combustion source, however, though it can be produced during high temperature pyrolysis of methane, and presumably other H, C-containing materials. This would require large, hot, low O2 zones, which may occur only in very large fires. The presence of retene indicates that biomass was a significant fuel source for the soot at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. The total amount of elemental C produced requires a greater than 3 percent soot yield, which is higher than typically observed for wildfires. However, retene and presumably coronene imply limited access of O2 and hence high soot yield.

  11. On the evolutionary history of Ephedra: Cretaceous fossils and extant molecules

    PubMed Central

    Rydin, Catarina; Pedersen, Kaj Raunsgaard; Friis, Else Marie

    2004-01-01

    Gnetales comprise three unusual genera of seed plants, Ephedra, Gnetum, and Welwitschia. Their extraordinary morphological diversity suggests that they are survivors of an ancient, more diverse group. Gnetalean antiquity is also supported by fossil data. Dispersed “ephedroid” (polyplicate) pollen first appeared in the Permian >250 million years ago (Myr), and a few megafossils document the presence of gnetalean features in the early Cretaceous. The Cretaceous welwitschioid seedling Cratonia cotyledon dates the split between Gnetum and Welwitschia to before 110 Myr. Ages and character evolution of modern diversity are, however, controversial, and, based on molecular data, it has recently been suggested that Ephedra is very young, only 8–32 Myr. Here, we present data on the evolutionary history of Ephedra. Fossil seeds from Buarcos, Portugal, unequivocally link one type of Cretaceous polyplicate pollen to Ephedra and document that plants with unique characters, including the peculiar naked male gametophyte, were established already in the Early Cretaceous. Clades in our molecular phylogeny of extant species correspond to geographical regions, with African species in a basal grade/clade. The study demonstrates extremely low divergence in both molecular and morphological characters in Ephedra. Features observed in the fossils are present in all major extant clades, showing that modern species have retained unique reproductive characters for >110 million years. A recent origin of modern species of Ephedra would imply that the Cretaceous Ephedra fossils discussed here were members of widespread, now extinct sister lineage(s), and that no morphological innovations characterized the second diversification. PMID:15545612

  12. Cretaceous sequence stratigraphy of the Northern South American Passive Margin: Implications for tectonic evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Kauffman, E.G.; Villamil, T.; Johnson, C.C. )

    1993-02-01

    The passive margin of northern South America, from Colombia to northeastern Venezuela, was relatively stable through the Cretaceous and only broadly affected by the entry of the Caribbean Plate into the Protocaribbean Basin. This region offers a unique opportunity to test the relative effects of global sealevel change, autocyclic sedimentologic processed, and regional tectonics in shaping the stratigraphic record of Cretaceous passive margins. High-resolution stratigraphic studies of Colombia and Venezuela have established a precise system of regional chronology and correlation with resolution <1 Ma (50-500 ka for the middle Cretaceous). This allows precise separation of allocyclic and autocyclic controls on facies development. This new chronology integrates assemblage zone biostratigraphy with event/cycle chronostratigraphy. Newly measured Cretaceous sections in Venezuela and throughout Colombia are calibrated to this new chronology, and sequence stratigraphic units independently defined to the third-order of resolution. Graphic correlation of all sections is used to identify sequences with regional stratigraphic expression, and those which correlate to sequence stratigraphic standards of North America, Europe and the global cycles of Hag et al. (1988). 50-60 percent of the stratigraphic sequences across the South American passive margin correlate to other continents and to the global sequence stratigraphic standard, reflecting strong eustatic influence on Cretaceous sedimentation across northern South America. The remaining sequences in this region reflect tectonic modification of the passive margin and autocyclic sedimentary processes.

  13. The Wandering Indian Plate and Its Changing Biogeography During the Late Cretaceous-Early Tertiary Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chatterjee, Sankar; Scotese, Christopher

    Palaeobiogeographic analysis of Indian tetrapods during the Late Cretaceous-Early Tertiary time has recognized that both vicariance and geodispersal have played important roles in producing biogeographic congruence. The biogeographic patterns show oscillating cycles of geodispersal (Late Cretaceous), followed by congruent episodes of vicariance and geodispersal (Early Eocene), followed by another geodispersal event (Middle Eocene). New biogeographic synthesis suggests that the Late Cretaceous Indian tetrapod fauna is cosmopolitan with both Gondwanan and Laurasian elements. Throughout most of the Cretaceous, India was separated from the rest of Gondwana, but in the latest Cretaceous it reestablished contact with Africa through Kohistan-Dras (K-D) volcanic arc, and maintained biotic link with South America via Ninetyeast Ridge-Kerguelen-Antarctica corridor. These two geodispersal routes allowed exchanges of "pan-Gondwana" terrestrial tetrapods from Africa, South America, and Madagascar. During that time India also maintained biotic connections with Laurasia across the Neotethys via Kohistan-Dras Arc and Africa. During the Palaeocene, India, welded to the K-D Arc, rafted like a "Noah's Ark" as an island continent and underwent rapid cladogenesis because of allopatric speciation. Although the Palaeocene fossil record is blank, Early Eocene tetrapods contain both endemic and cosmopolitan elements, but Middle Eocene faunas have strong Asian character. India collided with Asia in Early and Middle Eocene time and established a new northeast corridor for faunal migration to facilitate the bidirectional "Great Asian Interchange" dispersals.

  14. The Cretaceous record in a northeast-trending transect, northern Utah to east-central Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Merewether, E.A. )

    1991-03-01

    Cretaceous sedimentary rocks in the Laramide basins of the middle Rocky Mountains include 16,600 ft (5060 m) of predominantly siliciclastic strata in the thrust-belt of northern Utah and 7800 ft (2380 m) of mainly siliciclastic and calcareous strata near the craton in east central Wyoming. Regional changes in the thickness of the strata indicate that crustal subsidence during the Cretaceous was generally greatest in northern Utah and western Wyoming where it was associated with tectonic and sediment loading. However, the considerable thickness of uppermost Cretaceous nonmarine beds in several other areas reflects pronounced basin subsidence during early stages of the Laramide orogeny. In a transect from northern Utah to east-central Wyoming, based on outcrop sections, borehole logs, and chronostratigraphic data, Cretaceous rocks grade northeastward from mainly fluvial and nearshore marine synorogenic conglomerate, sandstone, mudstone, coal, and bentonite to mostly nearshore and offshore marine sandstone, mudstone, calcareous shale, and bentonite. Lateral changes in the lithofacies and in the extent of enclosed unconformities indicate marine transgressions and regressions that were effected by structural deformation, sedimentation, and eustatic events. Significant unconformities have been found at the base of the Cretaceous strata, at two horizons within beds of Albian age, at two horizons within rocks of Cenomanian and Turonian ages, at one horizon within Coniacian strata, and at two horizons within Campanian beds. Most of these unconformities are either flooding surfaces or sequence boundaries.

  15. Macrofossil extinction patterns at Bay of Biscay Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary sections

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ward, Peter D.; Macleod, Kenneth

    1988-01-01

    Researchers examined several K-T boundary cores at Deep Sea Drilling Project (DSDP) core repositories to document biostratigraphic ranges of inoceramid shell fragments and prisms. As in land-based sections, prisms in the deep sea cores disappear well before the K-T boundary. Ammonites show a very different extinction pattern than do the inoceramids. A minimum of seven ammonite species have been collected from the last meter of Cretaceous strata in the Bay of Biscay basin. In three of the sections there is no marked drop in either species numbers or abundance prior to the K-T boundary Cretaceous strata; at the Zumaya section, however, both species richness and abundance drop in the last 20 m of the Cretaceous, with only a single ammonite specimen recovered to date from the uppermost 12 m of Cretaceous strata in this section. Researchers conclude that inoceramid bivalves and ammonites showed two different times and patterns of extinction, at least in the Bay of Biscay region. The inoceramids disappeared gradually during the Early Maestrichtian, and survived only into the earliest Late Maestrichtian. Ammonites, on the other hand, maintained relatively high species richness throughout the Maestrichtian, and then disappeared suddenly, either coincident with, or immediately before the microfossil extinction event marking the very end of the Cretaceous.

  16. The mid-Cretaceous super plume, carbon dioxide, and global warming

    SciTech Connect

    Caldeira, K. ); Rampino, M.R. NASA Goddard Inst. for Space Studies, New York, NY )

    1991-06-01

    Carbon-dioxide releases associated with a mid-Cretaceous super plume and the emplacement of the Ontong-Java Plateau have been suggested as a principal cause of the mid-Cretaceous global warming. The authors developed a carbonate-silicate cycle model to quantify the possible climatic effects of these CO{sub 2} releases, utilizing four different formulations for the rate of silicate-rock weathering as a function of atmospheric CO{sub 2}. They find that CO{sub 2} emissions resulting from super-plume tectonics could have produced atmospheric CO{sub 2} levels from 3.7 to 14.7 times the modern pre-industrial value of 285 ppm. Based on the temperature sensitivity to CO{sub 2} increases used in the weathering-rate formulations, this would cause a global warming of from 2.8 to 7.7C over today's global mean temperature. Altered continental positions and higher sea level may have been contributed about 4.8C to mid-Cretaceous warming. Thus, the combined effects of paleogeographic changes and super-plume related CO{sub 2} emissions could be in the range of 7.6 to 12.5C, within the 6 to 14C range previously estimated for mid-Cretaceous warming. CO{sub 2} releases from oceanic plateaus alone are unlikely to have been directly responsible for more than 20% of the mid-Cretaceous increase in atmospheric CO{sub 2}.

  17. The mid-Cretaceous super plume, carbon dioxide, and global warming

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caldeira, Ken; Rampino, Michael R.

    1991-01-01

    Carbon-dioxide releases associated with a mid-Cretaceous super plume and the emplacement of the Ontong-Java Plateau have been suggested as a principal cause of the mid-Cretaceous global warming. A carbonate-silicate cycle model is developed to quantify the possible climatic effects of these CO2 releases, utilizing four different formulations for the rate of silicate-rock weathering as a function of atmospheric CO2. CO2 emissions resulting from super-plume tectonics could have produced atmospheric CO2 levels from 3.7 to 14.7 times the modern preindustrial value of 285 ppm. Based on the temperature sensitivity to CO2 increases used in the weathering-rate formulations, this would cause a global warming of from 2.8 to 7.7 C over today's glogal mean temperature. Altered continental positions and higher sea level may have been contributed about 4.8 C to mid-Cretaceous warming. Thus, the combined effects of paleogeographic changes and super-plume related CO2 emissions could be in the range of 7.6 to 12.5 C, within the 6 to 14 C range previously estimated for mid-Cretaceous warming. CO2 releases from oceanic plateaus alone are unlikely to have been directly responsible for more than 20 percent of the mid-Cretaceous increase in atmospheric CO2.

  18. Ascaulocardium armatum (Morton 1833), new genus (Late Cretaceous): the ultimate variation on the bivalve paradigm.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pojeta, J., Jr.; Sohl, N.F.

    1987-01-01

    Cretaceous clavagellid pelecypods are a poorly known group, and have previously received little study. Ascaulocardium armatum is conchologically the most complex burrowing pelecypod known. From the study of living clavagellids, it is possible to interpret the various tubes extending outward from the adventitious crypt of A. armatum as devices for hydraulic burrowing and deposit feeding. The conchologically complex A. armatum occurs near the beginning of the history of the Clavagellidae, and does not seem to have given rise to any younger species. Ascaulocardium armatum is known only from the Upper Cretaceous rocks (Santonian-Maastrichtian) of the east Gulf and Atlantic Coastal Plains of the United States of America, as is probably the genus Ascaulocardium. All known Cretaceous clavagellids are burrowing species having a free right valve, and this is the ancestral mode of life of the Clavagellidae. Clavagellids that have a boring habit are a more recent evolutionary development, as are burrowing species having both juvenile valves cemented to the crypt. Clavagellids probably evolved from Jurassic-Early Cretaceous pholadomyids. Almost all Cretaceous clavagellids occur outside the Tethyan Zoogeographic Realm; this distribution is in marked contrast to the modern distribution of the family. Living species mostly inhabit clear, shallow seas in subtropical to tropical shelf areas. - Authors

  19. Evidence of reworked Cretaceous fossils and their bearing on the existence of Tertiary dinosaurs

    SciTech Connect

    Eaton, J.G. ); Kirkland, J.I. ); Doi, K. )

    1989-06-01

    The Paleocene Shotgun fauna of Wyoming includes marine sharks as well as mammals. It has been suggested that the sharks were introduced from the Cannonball Sea. It is more likely that these sharks were reworked from a Cretaceous rock sequence that included both marine and terrestrial deposits as there is a mixture of marine and freshwater taxa. These taxa have not been recorded elsewhere after the Cretaceous and are not known from the Cannonball Formation. Early Eocene localities at Raven Ridge, Utah, similarly contain teeth of Cretaceous marine and freshwater fish, dinosaurs, and Eocene mammals. The Cretaceous teeth are well preserved, variably abraded, and serve to cast doubts on criteria recently used to claim that dinosaur teeth recovered from the Paleocene of Montana are not reworked. Another Eocene locality in the San Juan Basin has produced an Eocene mammalian fauna with diverse Cretaceous marine sharks. Neither the nature of preservation nor the degree of abrasion could be used to distinguish reworked from contemporaneous material. The mixed environments represented by the fish taxa and recognition of the extensive pre-Tertiary extinction of both marine and freshwater fish were employed to recognize reworked specimens.

  20. Large Cretaceous sphenodontian from Patagonia provides insight into lepidosaur evolution in Gondwana.

    PubMed

    Apesteguía, Sebastián; Novas, Fernando E

    2003-10-01

    Sphenodontian reptiles successfully radiated during Triassic and Jurassic times, but were driven almost to extinction during the Cretaceous period. The sparse Early Cretaceous record of sphenodontians has been interpreted as reflecting the decline of the group in favour of lizards, their suspected ecological successors. However, recent discoveries in Late Cretaceous beds in Patagonia partially modify this interpretation. Numerous skeletons of a new sphenodontian, Priosphenodon avelasi gen. et sp. nov., were collected from a single locality in the Cenomanian-Turonian Candeleros Formation, where it is more abundant than any other tetrapod group recorded in the quarry (for example, Crocodyliformes, Serpentes, Dinosauria and Mammalia). Adult specimens of Priosphenodon reached one metre in length, larger than any previously known terrestrial sphenodontian. Here we propose, using available evidence, that sphenodontians were not a minor component of the Cretaceous terrestrial ecosystems of South America, and that their ecological replacement by squamates was delayed until the early Tertiary. The new discovery helps to bridge the considerable gap in the fossil record (around 120 million years) that separates the Early Cretaceous sphenodontians from their living relatives (Sphenodon). PMID:14534584

  1. The first definitive Asian spinosaurid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from the early cretaceous of Laos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allain, Ronan; Xaisanavong, Tiengkham; Richir, Philippe; Khentavong, Bounsou

    2012-05-01

    Spinosaurids are among the largest and most specialized carnivorous dinosaurs. The morphology of their crocodile-like skull, stomach contents, and oxygen isotopic composition of the bones suggest they had a predominantly piscivorous diet. Even if close relationships between spinosaurids and Middle Jurassic megalosaurs seem well established, very little is known about the transition from a generalized large basal tetanuran to the specialized morphology of spinosaurids. Spinosaurid remains were previously known from the Early to Late Cretaceous of North Africa, Europe, and South America. Here, we report the discovery of a new spinosaurid theropod from the late Early Cretaceous Savannakhet Basin in Laos, which is distinguished by an autapomorphic sinusoidal dorsosacral sail. This new taxon, Ichthyovenator laosensis gen. et sp. nov., includes well-preserved and partially articulated postcranial remains. Although possible spinosaurid teeth have been reported from various Early Cretaceous localities in Asia, the new taxon I. laosensis is the first definite record of Spinosauridae from Asia. Cladistic analysis identifies Ichthyovenator as a member of the sub-clade Baryonychinae and suggests a widespread distribution of this clade at the end of the Early Cretaceous. Chilantaisaurus tashouikensis from the Cretaceous of Inner Mongolia, and an ungual phalanx from the Upper Jurassic of Colorado are also referred to spinosaurids, extending both the stratigraphical and geographical range of this clade.

  2. From nappe stacking to exhumation: Cretaceous tectonics in the Apuseni Mountains (Romania)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reiser, Martin Kaspar; Schuster, Ralf; Spikings, Richard; Tropper, Peter; Fügenschuh, Bernhard

    2016-05-01

    New Ar-Ar muscovite and Rb-Sr biotite age data in combination with structural analyses from the Apuseni Mountains provide new constraints on the timing and kinematics of deformation during the Cretaceous. Time-temperature paths from the structurally highest basement nappe of the Apuseni Mountains in combination with sedimentary data indicate exhumation and a position close to the surface after the Late Jurassic emplacement of the South Apuseni Ophiolites. Early Cretaceous Ar-Ar muscovite ages from structurally lower parts in the Biharia Nappe System (Dacia Mega-Unit) show cooling from medium-grade conditions. NE-SW-trending stretching lineation and associated kinematic indicators of this deformation phase (D1) are overprinted by top-NW-directed thrusting during D2. An Albian to Turonian age (110-90 Ma) is proposed for the main deformation (D2) that formed the present-day geometry of the nappe stack and led to a pervasive retrograde greenschist-facies overprint. Thermochronological and structural data from the Bihor Unit (Tisza Mega-Unit) allowed to establish E-directed differential exhumation during Early-Late Cretaceous times (D3.1). Brittle detachment faulting (D3.2) and the deposition of syn-extensional sediments indicate general uplift and partial surface exposure during the Late Cretaceous. Brittle conditions persist during the latest Cretaceous compressional overprint (D4).

  3. Cretaceous pollen in Pliocene rocks: implications for Pliocene climate in the southwestern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fleming, R.F.

    1994-01-01

    Pliocene rocks of the Imperial and Palm Spring Formations in southern California contain reworked Cretaceous pollen that helps determine the timing of erosion of Cretaceous rocks on the Colorado Plateau. The stratigraphic distribution of the pollen suggests that erosion of Cretaceous rocks in the southern part of the Colorado Plateau began by 4.5 Ma, and in the northern part of the plateau at 3.9 Ma. This erosional history indicates that rapid and extensive erosion of the Colorado Plateau occurred during the Pliocene and supports the hypothesis that much of the Grand Canyon was cut during the Pliocene, rather than earlier in the Tertiary. Rapid erosion and transport from the Colorado Plateau require the climate in that region during the Pliocene to have been significantly wetter than it is today. -from Author

  4. Geochemical evidence for Paleozoic oil in Lower Cretaceous O Sandstone, northern Denver basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clayton, J.L.

    1989-01-01

    Organic geochemical properties of the oil produced from the Lower Cretaceous O sandstone on the eastern flank of the Denver basin indicate that this oil has been derived from a different source rock than other Cretaceous oils in the basin. O sandstone oil is characterized by low pristane/phytane ratio, high isoprenoid/n-alkane ratios, high asphaltene content, high sulfur content, and slight predominance of even-carbon numbered n-alkanes in the C25+ fraction. These features are evidence of a Paleozoic source and indicate a carbonate rock is the likely source. Preliminary source rock evaluation and correlation data suggest that calcareous black shales and marls of Middle Pennsylvanian (Desmoinesian) age are the source of the O sandstone oil. This is the first reported occurrence of oil from Paleozoic source rocks in a Cretaceous reservoir in the Denver basin. -from Author

  5. Largest bird from the Early Cretaceous and its implications for the earliest avian ecological diversification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Zhonghe; Zhang, Fucheng

    2002-01-01

    With only one known exception, early Cretaceous birds were smaller than their closest theropod dinosaur relatives. Here we report on a new bird from the Early Cretaceous feathered-dinosaur-bearing continental deposits of Liaoning, northeast China, which is not only larger than Archaeopteryx but is nearly twice as large as the basal dromaeosaur Microraptor. The new taxon, Sapeornis chaoyangensis gen. et sp. nov. , has a more basal phylogenetic position than all other birds except for Archaeopteryx. Its exceptionally long forelimbs, well-developed deltoid crest of the humerus, proximally fused metacarpals, relatively short hindlimbs and short pygostyle indicate powerful soaring capability and further suggest that by the Early Cretaceous ecological diversification of early birds was greater than previously assumed. Electronic supplementary material to this paper can be obtained by using the Springer LINK server located at http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00114-001-0276-9.

  6. An abelisaurid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) tooth from the Lower Cretaceous Chicla formation of Libya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Joshua B.; Dalla Vecchia, Fabio M.

    2006-10-01

    An isolated theropod dinosaur tooth discovered in 1984 near Nalut in northwestern Libya is the only known dinosaur record from the Aptian-Albian (Lower Cretaceous) Chicla Formation in the Jabal Nafusah region of the country. The tooth was re-examined in an effort to better ascertain its taxonomic affinities. A stepwise discriminant function analysis compared the Libyan tooth to the dentitions of 24 other theropods and classified the tooth with cranial material from the Late Cretaceous of India previously referred to the abelisaurid Indosuchus. The temporal and paleogeographic "distance" separating the Libyan specimen from " Indosuchus" indicates that the former cannot pertain to that genus. However, the results of the analysis and synapomorphies of Abelisauridae present on the Libyan crown indicate that it can be referred to the clade, thus contributing to the growing record of Abelisauridae in the Cretaceous of mainland Africa.

  7. Stratigraphic correlation of the Late Cretaceous Simsima Formation United Arab Emirates and Akveren Formation, northwest Turkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdelghany, O.; Abu Saima, M.; Ramazanoglu, S.; Arman, H.

    2015-11-01

    Latest Cretaceous (Campanian-Maastrichtian) microfossils are used to correlate the carbonate rocks of the Simsima Formation in the northeastern part of the Arabian Peninsula (Northern Oman Mountains, United Arab Emirates and Oman) with the Akveren Formation in Kandira (northwest Turkey, near Black Sea region). Both formations have characteristically rich planktonic foraminiferal and calcareous nannofossil faunal assemblages that permit the recognition of the Globotruncanella havanensis Zone and Quadrum sissinghii Zone CC22. The palaeontological data is used to build an appropriate palaeoenvironmental model for the latest Cretaceous Aruma Group in the Oman Mountains foreland basin. The study reveals that the Late Cretaceous formations of UAE and Turkey can be divided into an open marine carbonate shelf facies (planktonic foraminifera/calcareous nannofossil biomicrite) and a shallow-marine carbonate facies (rudistids, coralline algal foraminiferal biomicrite).

  8. The last polar dinosaurs: high diversity of latest Cretaceous arctic dinosaurs in Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godefroit, Pascal; Golovneva, Lina; Shchepetov, Sergei; Garcia, Géraldine; Alekseev, Pavel

    2009-04-01

    A latest Cretaceous (68 to 65 million years ago) vertebrate microfossil assemblage discovered at Kakanaut in northeastern Russia reveals that dinosaurs were still highly diversified in Arctic regions just before the Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction event. Dinosaur eggshell fragments, belonging to hadrosaurids and non-avian theropods, indicate that at least several latest Cretaceous dinosaur taxa could reproduce in polar region and were probably year-round residents of high latitudes. Palaeobotanical data suggest that these polar dinosaurs lived in a temperate climate (mean annual temperature about 10°C), but the climate was apparently too cold for amphibians and ectothermic reptiles. The high diversity of Late Maastrichtian dinosaurs in high latitudes, where ectotherms are absent, strongly questions hypotheses according to which dinosaur extinction was a result of temperature decline, caused or not by the Chicxulub impact.

  9. Polar standstill of the mid-cretaceous pacific plate and its geodynamic implications.

    PubMed

    Tarduno, J A; Sager, W W

    1995-08-18

    Paleomagnetic data from the Mid-Cretaceous Mountains suggest that Pacific plate motion during the Early to mid-Cretaceous was slow, less than 0.3 degree per year, resembling the polar standstill observed in coeval rocks of Eurasia and North America. There is little evidence for a change in plate motion that could have precipitated the major volcanic episode of the early Aptian that is marked by the formation of the Ontong Java Plateau. During the volcanism, oceanic plates bordering the Pacific plate moved rapidly. Large-scale northward motion of the Pacific plate began after volcanism ceased. This pattern suggests that mantle plume volcanism exerted control on plate tectonics in the Cretaceous Pacific basin. PMID:17807731

  10. Macrofossil evidence for a rapid and severe Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction in Antarctica.

    PubMed

    Witts, James D; Whittle, Rowan J; Wignall, Paul B; Crame, J Alistair; Francis, Jane E; Newton, Robert J; Bowman, Vanessa C

    2016-01-01

    Debate continues about the nature of the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) mass extinction event. An abrupt crisis triggered by a bolide impact contrasts with ideas of a more gradual extinction involving flood volcanism or climatic changes. Evidence from high latitudes has also been used to suggest that the severity of the extinction decreased from low latitudes towards the poles. Here we present a record of the K-Pg extinction based on extensive assemblages of marine macrofossils (primarily new data from benthic molluscs) from a highly expanded Cretaceous-Paleogene succession: the López de Bertodano Formation of Seymour Island, Antarctica. We show that the extinction was rapid and severe in Antarctica, with no significant biotic decline during the latest Cretaceous, contrary to previous studies. These data are consistent with a catastrophic driver for the extinction, such as bolide impact, rather than a significant contribution from Deccan Traps volcanism during the late Maastrichtian. PMID:27226414

  11. Mass extinction of lizards and snakes at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Longrich, Nicholas R.; Bhullar, Bhart-Anjan S.; Gauthier, Jacques A.

    2012-12-01

    The Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary is marked by a major mass extinction, yet this event is thought to have had little effect on the diversity of lizards and snakes (Squamata). A revision of fossil squamates from the Maastrichtian and Paleocene of North America shows that lizards and snakes suffered a devastating mass extinction coinciding with the Chicxulub asteroid impact. Species-level extinction was 83%, and the K-Pg event resulted in the elimination of many lizard groups and a dramatic decrease in morphological disparity. Survival was associated with small body size and perhaps large geographic range. The recovery was prolonged; diversity did not approach Cretaceous levels until 10 My after the extinction, and resulted in a dramatic change in faunal composition. The squamate fossil record shows that the end-Cretaceous mass extinction was far more severe than previously believed, and underscores the role played by mass extinctions in driving diversification.

  12. Late Cretaceous origin of the rice tribe provides evidence for early diversification in Poaceae.

    PubMed

    Prasad, V; Strömberg, C A E; Leaché, A D; Samant, B; Patnaik, R; Tang, L; Mohabey, D M; Ge, S; Sahni, A

    2011-01-01

    Rice and its relatives are a focal point in agricultural and evolutionary science, but a paucity of fossils has obscured their deep-time history. Previously described cuticles with silica bodies (phytoliths) from the Late Cretaceous period (67-65 Ma) of India indicate that, by the latest Cretaceous, the grass family (Poaceae) consisted of members of the modern subclades PACMAD (Panicoideae-Aristidoideae-Chloridoideae-Micrairoideae-Arundinoideae-Danthonioideae) and BEP (Bambusoideae-Ehrhartoideae-Pooideae), including a taxon with proposed affinities to Ehrhartoideae. Here we describe additional fossils and show that, based on phylogenetic analyses that combine molecular genetic data and epidermal and phytolith features across Poaceae, these can be assigned to the rice tribe, Oryzeae, of grass subfamily Ehrhartoideae. The new Oryzeae fossils suggest substantial diversification within Ehrhartoideae by the Late Cretaceous, pushing back the time of origin of Poaceae as a whole. These results, therefore, necessitate a re-evaluation of current models for grass evolution and palaeobiogeography. PMID:21934664

  13. High-paleolatitude late cretaceous paleotemperatures: New data from James Ross Island, Antarctica

    SciTech Connect

    Pirrie, D. ); Marshall, J.D. )

    1990-01-01

    Oxygen-isotope analysis of well-preserved macrofossils from the Santonian-Campanian of James Ross Island and the Maastrichtian of Vega Island, Antarctica, indicates that cool high-paleolatitude temperatures prevailed during the Late Cretaceous and suggests that cooling occurred between the Santonian-Campanian and the Maastrichtian. Although more than 50% of the material showed diagenetic alteration, 52 unaltered aragonite and calcite samples were analyzed. Mean {delta}{sup 18}O and calculated paleotemperature values were {minus}0.23{per thousand} and 13.6 C, respectively, for the Santonian-Campanian, and 0.66{per thousand} and 11.7 C, respectively, for the Masstrichtian. In conjunction with recent Late Cretaceous paleoclimatic data from high northern paleolatitudes, these data indicate the presence of cool polar regions with broad climatic zonation during the late Cretaceous. This may have partly controlled faunal distributions.

  14. Avian evolution, Gondwana biogeography and the Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction event.

    PubMed Central

    Cracraft, J.

    2001-01-01

    The fossil record has been used to support the origin and radiation of modern birds (Neornithes) in Laurasia after the Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction event, whereas molecular clocks have suggested a Cretaceous origin for most avian orders. These alternative views of neornithine evolution are examined using an independent set of evidence, namely phylogenetic relationships and historical biogeography. Pylogenetic relationships of basal lineages of neornithines, including ratite birds and their allies (Palaleocognathae), galliforms and anseriforms (Galloanserae), as well as lineages of the more advanced Neoves (Gruiformes, (Capimulgiformes, Passeriformes and others) demonstrate pervasive trans-Antarctic distribution patterns. The temporal history of the neornithines can be inferred from fossil taxa and the ages of vicariance events, and along with their biogeographical patterns, leads to the conclusion that neornithines arose in Gondwana prior to the Cretaceous Tertiary extinction event. PMID:11296857

  15. New evidence on deinonychosaurian dinosaurs from the Late Cretaceous of Patagonia.

    PubMed

    Novas, Fernando E; Pol, Diego

    2005-02-24

    Most of what is known about the evolution of deinonychosaurs (that is, the group of theropods most closely related to birds) is based on discoveries from North America and Asia. Except for Unenlagia comahuensis and some fragmentary remains from northern Africa, no other evidence was available on deinonychosaurian diversity in Gondwana. Here we report a new, Late Cretaceous member of the clade, Neuquenraptor argentinus gen. et sp. nov., representing uncontroversial evidence of a deinonychosaurian theropod in the Southern Hemisphere. The new discovery demonstrates that Cretaceous theropod faunas from the southern continents shared greater similarity with those of the northern landmasses than previously thought. Available evidence suggests that deinonychosaurians were probably distributed worldwide at least by the beginning of the Cretaceous period. The phylogenetic position of the new deinonychosaur, as well as other Patagonian coelurosaurian theropods, is compatible with a vicariance model of diversification for some groups of Gondwanan and Laurasian dinosaurs. PMID:15729340

  16. A new dinosaur ichnotaxon from the Lower Cretaceous Patuxent Formation of Maryland and Virginia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stanford, R.; Weems, R.E.; Lockley, M.G.

    2004-01-01

    In recent years, numerous dinosaur footprints have been discovered on bedding surfaces within the Lower Cretaceous Patuxent Formation of Maryland and Virginia. Among these, distinctive small tracks that display a combination of small manus with five digit impressions and a relatively much larger pes with four toe impressions evidently were made by animals belonging to the ornithischian family Hypsilophodontidae. These tracks differ from any ornithischian ichnotaxon previously described. We here name them Hypsiloichnus marylandicus and provide a description of their diagnostic characteristics. Although hypsilophodontid skeletal remains have not been found in the Patuxent, their skeletal remains are known from Lower Cretaceous strata of similar age in both western North America and Europe. Therefore, it is not surprising to find that an Early Cretaceous representative of this family also existed in eastern North America. ?? Taylor and Francis Ltd.

  17. Sequential stratigraphy of Jurassic and Cretaceous in the central Saudi Arabian platform

    SciTech Connect

    Le Nindre, Y.M.; Manivit, J.; Vaslet, D. ); Manivit, H. Univ. Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris )

    1991-08-01

    Depositional sequences and system tracts in the Jurassic and Cretaceous sedimentary rocks of the Central Saudi Arabian platform have been established on the basis of precise lithofacies analysis, detailed sedimentologic interpretation, and accurate age determination by ammonites, nautoli, brachipods, echinoids, and nannoflora. A eustatic depositional model integrated with accepted worldwide sequential stratigraphic data is proposed, and appears to correlate fairly well with the 1988 global sea level chart by Haq and others, particularly for the Lower and Middle Jurassic and the Middle and Upper Cretaceous. Ages determined by accurate biostratigraphic data enable time correlations to be made with third-order eustatic cycles from Vail's 1988 global chart. Eustatic changes therefore appear to be the main factors of sedimentary control during the Jurassic and Cretaceous on the Arabian platform.

  18. Palaeobotanical evidence for a marked temperature increase following the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolfe, J.A.

    1990-01-01

    CORRESPONDENCE analysis of dicot leaf physiognomy of modern vegetational samples from a wide range of environments indicates that >70% of physiognomic variation corresponds to water or temperature factors, or both. Despite wide variation in single physiognomic characters, overall trends can be used to distinguish between samples from different climates. Some climate parameters are well correlated with changes in physiognomy, so that climate characteristics can be inferred from physiognomic analyses. Here I apply this climate-leaf analysis multivariate program (CLAMP) to leaf assemblages from the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary. The results indicate a fourfold increase in precipitation at the boundary and an increase in mean annual temperature of 10??C. These levels persisted for 0.5-1.0 Myr, after which precipitation decreased to about three times the values for the latest Cretaceous, and the mean annual temperature decreased to 5-6??C above latest Cretaceous values.

  19. Macrofossil evidence for a rapid and severe Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction in Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Witts, James D.; Whittle, Rowan J.; Wignall, Paul B.; Crame, J. Alistair; Francis, Jane E.; Newton, Robert J.; Bowman, Vanessa C.

    2016-05-01

    Debate continues about the nature of the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) mass extinction event. An abrupt crisis triggered by a bolide impact contrasts with ideas of a more gradual extinction involving flood volcanism or climatic changes. Evidence from high latitudes has also been used to suggest that the severity of the extinction decreased from low latitudes towards the poles. Here we present a record of the K-Pg extinction based on extensive assemblages of marine macrofossils (primarily new data from benthic molluscs) from a highly expanded Cretaceous-Paleogene succession: the López de Bertodano Formation of Seymour Island, Antarctica. We show that the extinction was rapid and severe in Antarctica, with no significant biotic decline during the latest Cretaceous, contrary to previous studies. These data are consistent with a catastrophic driver for the extinction, such as bolide impact, rather than a significant contribution from Deccan Traps volcanism during the late Maastrichtian.

  20. A Diverse Ant Fauna from the Mid-Cretaceous of Myanmar (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    PubMed Central

    Barden, Phillip; Grimaldi, David

    2014-01-01

    A new collection of 24 wingless ant specimens from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber (Albian-Cenomanian, 99 Ma) comprises nine new species belonging to the genus Sphecomyrmodes Engel and Grimaldi. Described taxa vary considerably with regard to total size, head and body proportion, cuticular sculpturing, and petiole structure while all species are unified by a distinct shared character. The assemblage represents the largest known diversification of closely related Cretaceous ants with respect to species number. These stem-group ants exhibit some characteristics previously known only from their extant counterparts along with presumed plesiomorphic morphology. Consequently, their morphology may inform hypotheses relating to basal relationships and general patterns of ant evolution. These and other uncovered Cretaceous species indicate that stem-group ants are not simply wasp-like, transitional formicids, but rather a group of considerable adaptive diversity, exhibiting innovations analogous to what crown-group ants would echo 100 million years later. PMID:24699881

  1. Calibration of the geologic time scale: Cenozoic and Late Cretaceous glauconite and nonglauconite dates compared

    SciTech Connect

    Craig, L.E.; Smith, A.G. ); Armstrong, R.L. )

    1989-09-01

    Revision of the 1982 time scale of Harland et al. has led to the compilation of 377 isotopic dates for calibration of the Cenozoic to Cretaceous time interval. The results show that the ages of stage boundaries based on glauconite dates are on average about 2 m.y. younger than those based on nonglauconite dates, but for many Cenozoic and Late Cretaceous stages the differences are too small to require special consideration of glauconite dates. Future work may reveal an irreducible systematic difference between glauconite and nonglauconite time scales, but the progress made so far in recognizing those glauconites likely to yield reliable dates for the Cenozoic to Late Cretaceous interval may continue to provide useful time-scale calibration points.

  2. A new Early Cretaceous eutherian mammal from the Sasayama Group, Hyogo, Japan

    PubMed Central

    Kusuhashi, Nao; Tsutsumi, Yukiyasu; Saegusa, Haruo; Horie, Kenji; Ikeda, Tadahiro; Yokoyama, Kazumi; Shiraishi, Kazuyuki

    2013-01-01

    We here describe a new Early Cretaceous (early Albian) eutherian mammal, Sasayamamylos kawaii gen. et sp. nov., from the ‘Lower Formation’ of the Sasayama Group, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. Sasayamamylos kawaii is characterized by a robust dentary, a distinct angle on the ventral margin of the dentary at the posterior end of the mandibular symphysis, a lower dental formula of 3–4 : 1 : 4 : 3, a robust lower canine, a non-molariform lower ultimate premolar, and a secondarily reduced entoconid on the molars. To date, S. kawaii is the earliest known eutherian mammal possessing only four premolars, which demonstrates that the reduction in the premolar count in eutherians started in the late Early Cretaceous. The occurrence of S. kawaii implies that the relatively rapid diversification of eutherians in the mid-Cretaceous had already started by the early Albian. PMID:23536594

  3. First North American occurrence of Anacoracid selachian Squalicorax yangaensis, Upper Cretaceous Dalton sandstone, near Crownpoint, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Wolberg, D.L.; Bellis, D. )

    1989-09-01

    This report documents the first North American occurrence of Squalicorax yangaensis in the Upper Cretaceous Dalton sandstone, Borrego Pass area, southeast of Crownpoint, New Mexico. The Dalton sandstone has been interpreted to be a regressive coastal barrier sandstone deposited parallel to the southeast-trending shoreline of the Late Cretaceous epeiric seaway.

  4. Integrated geophysical and geological study and petroleum appraisal of Cretaceous plays in the Western Gulf of Gabes, Tunisia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dkhaili, Noomen; Bey, Saloua; El Abed, Mahmoud; Gasmi, Mohamed; Inoubli, Mohamed Hedi

    2015-09-01

    An integrated study of available seismic and calibrated wells has been conducted in order to ascertain the structural development and petroleum potential of the Cretaceous Formations of the Western Gulf of Gabes. This study has resulted in an understanding of the controls of deep seated Tethyan tectonic lineaments by analysis of the Cretaceous deposits distribution. Three main unconformities have been identified in this area, unconformity U1 between the Jurassic and Cretaceous series, unconformity U2 separating Early from Late Cretaceous and known as the Austrian unconformity and the major unconformity U3 separating Cretaceous from Tertiary series. The seismic analysis and interpretation have confirmed the existence of several features dominated by an NE-SW extensive tectonic regime evidenced by deep listric faults, asymmetric horst and graben and tilted blocks structures. Indeed, the structural mapping of these unconformities, displays the presence of dominant NW-SE fault system (N140 to N160) bounding a large number of moderate sized basins. A strong inversion event related to the unconformity U3 can be demonstrated by the mapping of the unconformities consequence of the succession of several tectonic manifestations during the Cretaceous and post-Cretaceous periods. These tectonic events have resulted in the development of structural and stratigraphic traps further to the porosity and permeability enhancement of Cretaceous reservoirs.

  5. Sedimentologic Expression of the Cretaceous OAEs in a Tropical Epicontinental Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silva-Tamayo, J. C.; Eisenhauer, A.

    2015-12-01

    The acidification and deoxygention of modern oceans are major environmental concerns to the international community. The effects of ocean acidification and deoxigention in the biogeochemical cycles of modern tropical oceans are poorly constrained mainly due to the lack of empirical and quantitative data. The Cretaceous World witnessed several period of potential ocean acidification and deoxygenation, which resulted from the rapid additions of volcanic derived CO2 to the atmosphere. The effects of ocean acidification and deoxygenation on the Cretaceous biogeochemical cycles are evidenced mainly by major global C-isotope anomalies. These anomalies parallel the occurrence of organic rich black shales as well as major decreases in the deposition of shallow marine carbonates worldwide. Here we use detailed C- and Sr- chemostratigraphy as well as published bioestratigraphic information and volcanic zircon U-Pb ages to precisely constrain the geochemical and sedimentologic expression of the Cretaceous OAES along a tropical epicontinental sea, the La Luna Sea. Our multi-pronged approach allows identifying the occurrence of several of the Cretaceous Oceanic Anoxic Events (OAEs) in carbonate units paleogeographically located along the northern most part of the La Luna Sea, i.e. Weissert-OAE-(Palanz and Rosablanca Formations), Faraoni-(Rosablanca Formation), AOE1a-(Paja and Fomeque Formations, Cogollo Group), OAE1c-(Cogollo Group), OAE2-(Cogollo Group), OAE3-(La Luna Formation). These events are preserved in highly euxinic - organic rich "black shales" successions deposited along the deepest part of the seaway at the Middle Magdalena Valley and Cundinamarca Basin; Weiser-OAE-(Lutitas de Macanal Formation), OAE1a-(Paja Formation, Fomeque Formation), OAE1C-(San Gil Formation). Regional changes in depositional settings and sedimentary facies preserving the different Cretaceous OAEs were likely the result of the combined action of regional changes in paleogeography and tectonic

  6. Structural constraints on the groundwater regime of the Cretaceous aquifers in Central Sinai, Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shalaby, A.; Embaby, A.; Seiam, A.

    2012-10-01

    The Lower Cretaceous aquifer is one of the most important water bearing formations not only in Sinai but also in the Middle East because of its high hydraulic parameters and good water quality. This aquifer is dominated by a thick sequence of well sorted and permeable sandstones The Lower Cretaceous aquifer is generally crossed by two main E-W trending, down to the north normal right-lateral oblique-slip faults; the Ragabet El-Naam Fault (RANF) to the south and Minsherih-Abu Kandu Shear Zone (MAKZ) further north. In Central Sinai, the water flow pattern and hydrochemistry of the Lower Cretaceous aquifer are controlled by the fault-fold patterns. Across the RANF the water flow is retarded behind the fault zone and deviates toward its central segment where the groundwater spills-out northward at Nekhel City. In contrast, the MAKZ defines a barrier for the northward flowing groundwater where the Lower Cretaceous aquifer south of the fault is blocked by the Upper Cretaceous to Eocene limestone and shale to the north. The water type changes across the fault zones from meteoric water to water of marine origin at the RANF and north of MAKZ respectively with sporadic occurrences of old marine water types limited to NW-trending structural lows. Generally the northward flow pattern of the Lower Cretaceous aquifer shows an eastward deviation to Gulf of Aqaba-Dead Sea rift and southwestward deviation to Gulf of Suez rift. Such deviations are controlled by the fault patterns characterizing north and west Sinai provinces.

  7. Source rock in the Lower Tertiary and Cretaceous, deep-water Gulf of Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, B.E.; Sofer, Z.; Claxton, B.L.

    1994-09-01

    Amoco drilled three wells in the deep-water Gulf of Mexico in 1993. One well, in Mississippi Canyon Block 84 (W.D. 5200 ft), drilled a structural feature. The well penetrated Cretaceous section and crossed the middle Cenomanian unconformity. Six sidewall cores from 14,230-15,200 ft (subsea) contained TOC values from 2.6 to 5.2% with hydrogen indices front 360 to 543 ppm in lower Tertiary and Cretaceous shales. All six cores were thermally immature, for oil generation, based on biomarker ratios and vitrinite reflectance measurements. Organic extracts from cores in the Cretaceous had biomarker characteristics similar to oil reservoired in the Miocene. The oil was probably generated from a similar, but more mature, source rock. The high structural position of the well prevented the lower Tertiary and Upper Cretaceous section from entering the oil window at this location. There are over 2000 ft of structural relief and an additional 6000-8000 ft of Lower Cretaceous section below the level penetrated by the well. It is probable that an equivalent section off structure is in the oil window. Prior to drilling, estimates of expected thermal maturities and temperatures were made using {sub BASINMOD}, a hydrocarbon generation/expulsion modeling package. The model predicted higher well temperatures (e,g., 225{degrees}F vs. 192{degrees}F) and lower vitrinite maturity (0.44% vs. 0.64%) than encountered in the well. Vitrinite reflectance equivalents of 0.41% and 0.43% were calculated from biomarker ratios of the Cretaceous core extracts, matching the {sub BASINMOD} predicted value of 0.44%.

  8. Late Cretaceous and Eocene volcanism in the southern Line Islands and implications for hotspot theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haggerty, Janet A.; Schlanger, Seymour O.; Premoli Silva, Isabella

    1982-08-01

    Rocks dredged from a seamount 100 km northwest of Caroline Island, at the southern end of the Line Islands chain, contain Late Cretaceous fossils associated with volcanic debris. This association is evidence for the existence of a reef-bearing volcanic edifice with a minimum age of Late Cretaceous, 70 to 75 m.y., near Caroline Island. With the discovery of this seamount, the known occurrences of Late Cretaceous, reef-capped, volcanic edifices now extend a distance of 2,500 km, from Deep Sea Drilling Project Site 165 to 100 km northwest of Caroline Island. The apparent synchroneity of Late Cretaceous volcanism over this distance argues against the proposition that a single hotspot of the Hawaiian-Emperor type produced the Line Islands chain. Biochronologic data from the Line Islands indicate that the chain is not the temporal equivalent of the Emperor chain. Volcanic edifices of Cretaceous age are now known to extend from the Line Islands through the Mid-Pacific Mountains to the Marshall Islands and the western margin of the Pacific plate from Japan to the Marianas. A volcanic event occurred in the southern Line Islands during middle Eocene time; Eocene sediments were engulfed and altered by a volcanic eruption. The occurrence of both Cretaceous and Eocene volcanism in the southern Line Islands indicates that the history of the Line Islands is similar to that of the Marshall Islands. *Present addresses: (Haggerty) Department of Geosciences, University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74104; (Schlanger) Department of Geological Sciences, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 60201

  9. Tectono-sedimentary framework of the early Cretaceous continental Bima formation (upper Benue Trough, NE Nigeria)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiraud, M.

    The major structural features of the upper Benue Trough, directly influenced by the Precambrian framework, were initiated during Early Cretaceous times. Previous studies have shown the sandy Bima member deposits to be of probable Neocomian to Upper Aptain age. The Lower Bima gfang lomerates are restricted to the faulted basin margins and give way to braided-river deposits and ≪lacustrine≫deposits towards the basin axes. Characteristic sedimentary profiles of the different facies present within the various Bima members are given. On a regional scale, a horst and graben structural environment controlled both Upper Jurassic to Neocomian magmatism and the overall paleocurrent pattern prevailing during Lower Bima member sedimentation. The Lower Bima continental detrital deposits were transported along varying directions from uplifted areas towards neighbouring sub-basins. These observations clearly demonstrate the influence of Early Cretaceous synsedimentary tectonics on Lower Bima deposition. Both the Benue and Chad structural trends were of importance in controlling the Early Cretaceous history of the Upper Benue basin. A detailed microtectonic study was carried out along the Early Cretaceous synsedimentary fault zones. The results obtained, coupled with those from regional tectonics, indicate that the Upper Benue trough consists of a set a Earlt Cretaceous rhomb grabens or pull-ampart basins with sinistral strike-slip borders trending N 40°E to N 70°E ("Benue" trend) and normal borders striking N 120°E to N 160°E ("Chad" trend). The sediments of the lower Bima member were deposited prior to a major regional hiatus corresponding to the levelling of the continental basins during Late Aptian to Albian times. The fine-grained sediments of the upper Bima member were deposited in an homogeneous braided river system flowing towards the northwest. These deposits seal the major Early Cretaceous structural features.

  10. Early cretaceous platform-margin configuration and evolution in the central Oman mountains, Arabian peninsula

    SciTech Connect

    Pratt, B.R. ); Smewing, J.D. )

    1993-02-01

    The Hajar Supergroup (Middle Permian-Lower Cretaceous) of northeastern Oman records rifting and development of a passive margin along the edge of the Arabian platform facing Neo-Tethys. The Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous part, comprising the Sahtan, Kahmah, and Wasia groups, was deposited during the maximum extent of the broad epicontinental sea landward of this margin. These limestone units reach a total of 1500 m in thickness and correlate with the hydrocarbon reservoirs of the Arabian Peninsula. The trace of the Jurassic and Cretaceous margin in northeastern Oman followed a zigzag series of rift segments, resulting in promontories and reentrants that changed in position through time in response to the configuration and differential motion of underlying rift blocks. Synsedimentary normal faulting occurred locally in the Middle Jurassic, whereas in the Late Jurassic, the margin was eroded from variable uplift of up to 300 m before subsiding to below storm wave base. This uplift may have been caused by compression from oceanic crust that obducted along the southeastern side of the platform. The Lower Cretaceous succession in the central Oman Mountains and adjacent subsurface began with regional drowning around the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary. The succession in the east (Saih Hatat) records a single regressive sequence, ending in the progradation of the shallow-water carbonate platform by the Cenomanian. However, the succession in the west (Jebel Akhdar and interior) is dominated by shallow-water carbonate facies, but punctuated by a second regional drowning in the late Aptian. A third, Late Cretaceous drowning terminated deposition of the Wasia Group in the Turonian and was caused by convergence of oceanic crust and foreland basic formation. The record of tectonic behavior of carbonate platforms has important implications for the development of hydrocarbon source rocks and porosity. 68 refs., 11 figs., 1 tab.

  11. Highly specialized mammalian skulls from the Late Cretaceous of South America.

    PubMed

    Rougier, Guillermo W; Apesteguía, Sebastián; Gaetano, Leandro C

    2011-11-01

    Dryolestoids are an extinct mammalian group belonging to the lineage leading to modern marsupials and placentals. Dryolestoids are known by teeth and jaws from the Jurassic period of North America and Europe, but they thrived in South America up to the end of the Mesozoic era and survived to the beginnings of the Cenozoic. Isolated teeth and jaws from the latest Cretaceous of South America provide mounting evidence that, at least in western Gondwana, dryolestoids developed into strongly endemic groups by the Late Cretaceous. However, the lack of pre-Late Cretaceous dryolestoid remains made study of their origin and early diversification intractable. Here we describe the first mammalian remains from the early Late Cretaceous of South America, including two partial skulls and jaws of a derived dryolestoid showing dental and cranial features unknown among any other group of Mesozoic mammals, such as single-rooted molars preceded by double-rooted premolars, combined with a very long muzzle, exceedingly long canines and evidence of highly specialized masticatory musculature. On one hand, the new mammal shares derived features of dryolestoids with forms from the Jurassic of Laurasia, whereas on the other hand, it is very specialized and highlights the endemic, diverse dryolestoid fauna from the Cretaceous of South America. Our specimens include only the second mammalian skull known for the Cretaceous of Gondwana, bridging a previous 60-million-year gap in the fossil record, and document the whole cranial morphology of a dryolestoid, revealing an unsuspected morphological and ecological diversity for non-tribosphenic mammals. PMID:22051679

  12. The Geochemical Records of the Mid-Cretaceous in Tibet and Their Implications to the OAEs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biao, C.

    2014-12-01

    It is well known that a few Oceanic Anoxic Events(OAEs)occurred with extreme warming climates during the Middle Cretaceous. Although many models have been proposed[ e.g. reference 1-4], the mechanisms for the occurrences of the OAEs with extreme climates remain unclear. Here, we provide inorganic carbon isotope (δ13C), iron speciation chemistry and trace element records for the later Aptian and the Cenomannian OAEs in the Southern Tibet. Our results indicate that these OAEs in the Tibet were featured by extremely negative δ13Canomalies(-15‰~-35‰),rich LREE with Eu positive anomalies and low iron ratios which suggest oxic bottom water conditions for the depositions .Accordingly, we propose that large-scale releases of methane may have greatly consumed dissolved oxygen and other oxidants in the water columns with increasing carbon emissions, which may at least partially contributed to the multiple developments of the oceanic anoxia and extreme warming in the middle Cretaceous. Reference:1. Larson, R.L. and E. Erba, Onset of the Mid-Cretaceous greenhouse in the Barremian-Aptian: Igneous events and the biological, sedimentary, and geochemical responses. Paleoceanography, 1999. 14(6): p. 663-678. 2. Weissert, H., et al., Correlation of Early Cretaceous carbon isotope stratigraphy and platform drowning events: a possible link? Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 1998. 137(3): p. 189-203. 3. Erbacher, J., et al., Increased thermohaline stratification as a possible cause for an ocean anoxic event in the Cretaceous period. Nature, 2001. 409(6818): p. 325-327. 4. Wilson, P.A. and R.D. Norris, Warm tropical ocean surface and global anoxia during the mid-Cretaceous period. Nature, 2001. 412(6845): p. 425-429.

  13. The Early Cretaceous Sulfur Isotope Record: New Data, Revised Ages, and Updated Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kristall, B.; Hurtgen, M.; Sageman, B. B.; Jacobson, A. D.

    2015-12-01

    The Early Cretaceous is a time of significant transformation with the continued break-up of Pangea, the emplacement of several LIPs, and a climatic shift from a cool greenhouse to a warm greenhouse. The timing of these major events and their relationship to seawater geochemistry (as recorded in isotope records) is critical for understanding changes in global biogeochemical cycles during this time. Within this context, recent revisions to the Cretaceous portion of the geologic timescale necessitate a reevaluation of the Cretaceous S isotope record as recorded in marine barite (Paytan et al., 2004). We present a revised Early Cretaceous S isotope record and present new δ34Sbarite data that extend the record further back in time and provide more detail during two major S isotope shifts of the Early Cretaceous. The new data maintain the major ~5‰ negative shift but raise questions on the timing and structure of this perturbation. Furthermore, recently updated estimates for global rates of marine microbial sulfate reduction (MSR) (Bowles et al., 2014) and sulfate burial during the Phanerozoic (Halevy et al., 2012) require notable revisions in the fluxes and isotopic values used to model the global S cycle. We present a revised global S cycle box model and reconstruct the evolution of the Early Cretaceous S isotope record primarily through perturbations in volcanic and hydrothermal fluxes (e.g., submarine LIPs). Changes to the weathering and pyrite burial fluxes and the global integrated fractionation factor for MSR are also used to modulate, balance, and smooth the LIP-driven perturbation. The massive evaporite burial during the Late Aptian post dates the major -5‰ shift and has little affect on the modeled S isotope composition of seawater sulfate, despite causing a major drop in sulfate concentration. The S cycle box model is coupled to a Sr cycle box model to provide additional constraints on the magnitude and timing of perturbations within the S isotope record.

  14. A pterodactyloid pterosaur from the Upper Cretaceous Lapurr sandstone, West Turkana, Kenya.

    PubMed

    O'Connor, Patrick M; Sertich, Joseph J W; Manthi, Fredrick K

    2011-03-01

    An isolated pterosaurian caudal cervical (~ postcervical) vertebra was recovered from the Upper Cretaceous Lapurr sandstone of West Turkana, northwestern Kenya. The vertebral centrum is short, wide, and dorsoventrally compressed. Although the specimen is lightly built similar to most pterosaurs, it is here referred to Pterodactyloidea and tentatively to the Azhdarchidae in that it lacks pneumatic features on both the centrum and neural arch. This represents one of the few pterosaurs recovered from the entirety of Afro-Arabia, the first pterosaur recovered from the Cretaceous of East Africa, and, significantly, a specimen that was recovered from fluvial deposits rather than the near-shore marine setting typical of most pterosaur discoveries. PMID:21437388

  15. Chapter 4: The Cretaceous-Lower Tertiary Composite Total Petroleum System, Wind River Basin, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, R.C.; Finn, Thomas M.; Kirschbaum, Mark A.; Roberts, Stephen B.; Roberts, Laura N.R.; Cook, Troy; Taylor, David J.

    2007-01-01

    The Cretaceous-Lower Tertiary Composite Total Petroleum System (TPS) of the Wind River Basin Province includes all strata from the base of the Lower Cretaceous Cloverly Formation to the base of the Waltman Shale Member of the Paleocene age Fort Union Formation and, where the Waltman is absent, includes strata as young as the Eocene Wind River Formation. Locally, Cretaceous-sourced gas migrated into strata as old as the Mississippian Madison Limestone, and in these areas the TPS extends stratigraphically downward to include these reservoirs. The extensive vertical migration of gases in highly fractured areas of the Wind River Basin led to the commingling of gases from several Upper Cretaceous and lower Tertiary sources, thus only two petroleum systems are recognized in these rocks, the Cretaceous-Lower Tertiary Composite TPS, the subject of this report, and the Waltman Shale TPS described by Roberts and others (Chapter 5, this CD-ROM). The Cretaceous-lower Tertiary Composite TPS was subdivided into (1) seven continuous gas assessment units (AU): (a) Frontier-Muddy Continuous Gas AU, (b) Cody Sandstone Continuous Gas AU, (c) Mesaverde--Meeteetse Sandstone Gas AU, (d) Lance-Fort Union Sandstone Gas AU, (e) Mesaverde Coalbed Gas AU, (f) Meeteetse Coalbed Gas AU, and (g) Fort Union Coalbed Gas AU; (2) one continuous oil assessement unit--- Cody Fractured Shale Continuous Oil AU; and (3) one conventional assessment Unit--- Cretaceous-Tertiary Conventional Oil and Gas AU. Estimates of undiscovered resources having the potential for additions to reserves were made for all but the Cody Fractured Shale Continuous Oil AU, which is considered hypothetical and was not quantitively assessed. The mean estimate of the total oil is 41.99 million barrels, mean estimate of gas is 2.39 trillion cubic feet, and mean estimate of natural gas liquids is 20.55 million barrels. For gas, 480.66 billion cubic feet (BCFG) is estimated for the Frontier-Muddy Continuous Gas AU, 115.34 BCFG for

  16. Completion and Preliminary Achievements of Chinese Cretaceous Continental Scientific Drilling Project- SK-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, C.

    2009-12-01

    It has been thought that the climate during the Cretaceous time stands for the paradigm of greenhouse climate in the geological history, which has drawn increasing attention of the international community and the theme of series scientific program such as DSDP, ODP and IODP. However knowledge of Cretaceous terrestrial climatic change is often at best fragmentary. A proposal of scientific drilling in the Cretaceous Songliao Basin (42o25’-49o23’N, 119o40’-128o24’E) has been suggested to recover a nearly complete Cretaceous terrestrial sedimentary record, as determined by the basin filling history. During 2006 and 2007 part of the scientific drilling program (SK-1) has been conducted to acquire the core of the middle and upper part of the Cretaceous succession under the support of Daqing oilfield and Ministry of Science and Technology of China. The length of the core is 2485.89m with recovery ratio of 96.46%. Such proposal has been submitted to the ICDP organization and granted in 2009. It has been planed that the next step (SK-2) is to recover the lower and remained middle part of the Cretaceous succession in 2010 and 2011. Up to now, more than 30, 000 samples have been collected and analyzing with preliminary results regarding the interested issues. One of the most important progresses is that we have constructed the stratigraphic framework for the core based mainly on the paleomagnetic analysis. Also we have discovered the orbital cycles in the Cretaceous terrestrial strata which could have potentially affect the paleoclimate. The carbon and oxygen isotope records and other proxies based on the well-preserved osrtacod shell have been required to assess the carbon cycle, paleoclimate change and variation of lake water chemistry during the evolution of this largest terrestrial oil-bearing basin in China. The change in the diversity and abundance of microfossils including ostrocod and algaes has also been analyzed for this aim. Geochemical results (both

  17. A giant sauropod dinosaur from an Upper Cretaceous mangrove deposit in Egypt.

    PubMed

    Smith, J B; Lamanna, M C; Lacovara, K J; Dodson, P; Smith, J R; Poole, J C; Giegengack, R; Attia, Y

    2001-06-01

    We describe a giant titanosaurid sauropod dinosaur discovered in coastal deposits in the Upper Cretaceous Bahariya Formation of Egypt, a unit that has produced three Tyrannosaurus-sized theropods and numerous other vertebrate taxa. Paralititan stromeri is the first tetrapod reported from Bahariya since 1935. Its 1.69-meter-long humerus is longer than that of any known Cretaceous sauropod. The autochthonous scavenged skeleton was preserved in mangrove deposits, raising the possibility that titanosaurids and their predators habitually entered such environments. PMID:11387472

  18. Early and Late Cretaceous volcanism and reef-building in the Marshall Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lincoln, Jonathan M.; Pringle, Malcolm S.; Silva, Isabella Premoli

    Radiometric and biostratigraphic ages for samples recovered from fourteen guyots, seamounts and atolls in the Marshall Islands document construction of carbonate platforms and the volcanos on which the platforms grew during the Early and Late Cretaceous. Previously, the only evidence for reef-building during the Early and Late Cretaceous in the Marshall Islands was shallow-bank fossils deposited in turbidites penetrated at DSDP Site 462 in the Nauru Basin. The distribution of volcano and platform ages reported in this paper suggests a complex history that cannot be explained by passage of the region over a single hotspot. Assemblages of whole and fragmented rudists recovered from two guyots may be equivalent to the lower to middle Albian of the Gulf of Mexico coast. Limestones dated Cenomanian or older that contain shallow-water debris document the existence of carbonate banks during the Early Cretaceous at three additional guyots. A 40Ar/39Ar age of 138.2±0.8 Ma for Look Seamount is the first direct evidence of seamount volcanism in the Marshall Islands during the Early Cretaceous. Limestones of Late Cretaceous age that contain shallow-water debris were recovered from nine seamounts or guyots in the Marshall Islands; limestones of Eocene age have been recovered at two other locations. Late Cretaceous 40Ar/39Ar ages, including a revised age of 75.9±0.6 Ma for the basalt recovered from the bottom of the Anewetak Atoll drill core, have been determined for 6 volcanic edifices in this region. Four Marshall Islands sites of volcanism and reef-building during the Late Cretaceous are located at, or adjacent to, sites of volcanism or reef-building during the Early Cretaceous. This superposition of ages suggests multiple periods of volcanism, uplift, reef-building, and subsidence that cannot be explained with a single hotspot model. The origin of the Marshall Islands could be explained by the passage of the region over more than one hotspot over a period of at least 70 m.y.

  19. A Gigantic Shark from the Lower Cretaceous Duck Creek Formation of Texas

    PubMed Central

    Frederickson, Joseph A.; Schaefer, Scott N.; Doucette-Frederickson, Janessa A.

    2015-01-01

    Three large lamniform shark vertebrae are described from the Lower Cretaceous of Texas. We interpret these fossils as belonging to a single individual with a calculated total body length of 6.3 m. This large individual compares favorably to another shark specimen from the roughly contemporaneous Kiowa Shale of Kansas. Neither specimen was recovered with associated teeth, making confident identification of the species impossible. However, both formations share a similar shark fauna, with Leptostyrax macrorhiza being the largest of the common lamniform sharks. Regardless of its actual identification, this new specimen provides further evidence that large-bodied lamniform sharks had evolved prior to the Late Cretaceous. PMID:26039066

  20. A gigantic shark from the lower cretaceous duck creek formation of Texas.

    PubMed

    Frederickson, Joseph A; Schaefer, Scott N; Doucette-Frederickson, Janessa A

    2015-01-01

    Three large lamniform shark vertebrae are described from the Lower Cretaceous of Texas. We interpret these fossils as belonging to a single individual with a calculated total body length of 6.3 m. This large individual compares favorably to another shark specimen from the roughly contemporaneous Kiowa Shale of Kansas. Neither specimen was recovered with associated teeth, making confident identification of the species impossible. However, both formations share a similar shark fauna, with Leptostyrax macrorhiza being the largest of the common lamniform sharks. Regardless of its actual identification, this new specimen provides further evidence that large-bodied lamniform sharks had evolved prior to the Late Cretaceous. PMID:26039066

  1. Relationship between mass extinction and iridium across the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary in New Jersey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, K.G.; Sherrell, Robert M.; Browning, J.V.; Field, M.P.; Gallagher, W.; Olsson, R.K.; Sugarman, P.J.; Tuorto, S.; Wahyudi, H.

    2010-01-01

    We directly link iridium (Ir) anomalies in New Jersey to the mass extinction of marine plankton marking the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary. We confirm previous reports of an Ir anomaly 20 cm below the extinction of Cretaceous macrofauna (the "Pinna" bed) with new results from a muddy sand section from Tighe Park, Freehold, New Jersey (United States), but we also show that Ir anomalies correlate with marine mass extinctions at three other clay-rich New Jersey sections. Thus, we attribute the anomaly at Freehold to the downward movement of Ir and reaffirm the link between impact and mass extinction. ?? 2010 Geological Society of America.

  2. Kinematics from footprints: Analysis of a possible dinosaur predation event in the Cretaceous Era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2008-10-01

    Motivation is enhanced by challenging students with interesting and open-ended questions. In this talk, a methodology for studying the locomotion of extinct animals based on their footprint trackways is developed and applied to a possible predation event recorded in a Cretaceous Era deposit.ootnotetextJ.O. Farlow, ``Lower Cretaceous Dinosaur Tracks, Paluxy River Valley, Texas,'' South Central Geological Society of America, Baylor University, 1987. Students usually love learning about dinosaurs, an unexpected treat in a physics class. This example can be used in the classroom to help build critical thinking skills as the students decide whether the evidence supports a predation scenario or not.

  3. Fossils of hydrothermal vent worms from Cretaceous sulfide ores of the Samail ophiolite, Oman

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haymon, R.M.; Koski, R.A.; Sinclair, C.

    1984-01-01

    Fossil worm tubes of Cretaceous age preserved in the Bayda massive sulfide deposit of the Samail ophiolite, Oman, are apparently the first documented examples of fossils embedded in massive sulfide deposits from the geologic record. The geologic setting of the Bayda deposit and the distinctive mineralogic and textural features of the fossiliferous samples suggest that the Bayda sulfide deposit and fossil fauna are remnants of a Cretaceous sea-floor hydrothermal vent similar to modern hot springs on the East Pacific Rise and the Juan de Fuca Ridge.

  4. Late Cretaceous paleomagnetism of the Tucson Mountains: implications for vertical axis rotations in south central Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hagstrum, J.T.; Lipman, P.W.

    1991-01-01

    The Tucson Mountains of southern Arizona are the site of an Upper Cretaceous caldera from which the rhyolitic Cat Mountain Tuff was erupted at about 72 Ma. Two magnetic units within the Cat Mountain Tuff are distinguished by paleomagnetic data in both the northern and southern Tucson Mountains. The available paleomagnetic data indicate that rocks in southern Arizona have not remained unrotated with respect to North America since Late Cretaceous time and that vertical axis rotations may have played an important role in the region during Laramide deformation. -from Authors

  5. Integrating palaeoenvironmental and climate cyclicities - Optimizing the stratigraphic framework in the non-marine Lower Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sames, Benjamin

    2015-04-01

    Studies on changing paleoenvironments and climate cycles in non-marine archives of the Cretaceous greenhouse earth are hitherto rare, primarily a result of the lack of high-resolution stratigraphy and correlations to the marine record. On the other hand, recent refinements of the geological time scale have made major advances for the Cretaceous to yield a resolution comparable to that of younger Earth history. In the Cretaceous marine record is now possible to correlate and date short-term sea-level records and their possible relation to climate and/or tectonic events with appropriate resolution. Correlation in the non-marine realm ('continental' aquatic) has long been fraught with considerable problems and limitations, especially on supraregional (i.e., inter-basinal) to global scales, thus often hampering serious attempts at dating and chronological linking of events documented by the respective deposits - let alone appropriate correlation to marine successions. A new interdisciplinary project and multi-proxy study funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) uses the Lower Cretaceous European record (English Wealden) as a test site for the integration of ostracod biostratigraphy and assemblage changes, and cyclostratigraphy (orbitally/climate driven cycles). Ostracods (microcrustaceans with a calcified shell) are the most useful biostratigraphical and palaeoenvironmental tool in Lower Cretaceous non-marine sequences. During the past two decades, research progress in late Mesozoic non-marine ostracods led to their extended applicability, whereas their wide dispersal ability has become a key conside-ration in their supraregional (inter-basinal to global) biostratigraphical utility. The integrative methodology applied in this project, targets the correlation of the ostracod faunal composition change with the variation of geochemical and sedimentological parameters through time and inferences on controlling (palaeoenvironmental) factors and their regulating mechanisms

  6. Extinction and survival of plant life following the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary event, Western Interior, North America ( USA).

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tschudy, R.H.; Tschudy, B.D.

    1986-01-01

    The palynological Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary is recognized in the northern part of the Western Interior by the abrupt disappearance of a few characteristic Cretaceous pollen genera. In the southern part, the boundary is recognized by the disappearance of a somewhat different group of pollen. The abrupt change in both regions takes place precisely at the stratigraphic horizon at which boundary clay layers containing anomalously high concentrations of iridium are found. All the principal Cretaceous pollen genera that disappear regionally have been reported from Tertiary rocks in other parts of North America. Differential apparent extinction and/or survival reflects a pronounced temporary disruption of plant life immediately after the impact event. Some Cretaceous plants must have persisted in refugia to have provided the propagules for the rapid recovery of the flora. No massive total extinction of plant genera at the end of the Cretaceous can be seen from the palynologic record. -from Authors

  7. Palaeointensity just at the onset of the Cretaceous normal superchron

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Huafeng; He, Huaiyu; Liu, Qingsong; Cai, Shuhui

    2011-08-01

    A combined palaeomagnetic and geochronologic study has been conducted on a basaltic lava sequence of five flows at Jianchang in Liaoning Province, northeastern China. Radiometric 40Ar/ 39Ar dating indicates that the volcanism occurred at about 119 Ma within the marine anomaly C34n in Cretaceous normal superchron (CNS). Rock magnetic investigations show that pseudo-single domain (PSD) or a mixture of single domain and multi-domain grain titanium-poor titanomagnetite is dominant in the studied lava flows. Both stepwise thermal and alternating field demagnetizations isolate the well-defined normal characteristic remanent magnetization (ChRM) in five independent lava flows with a mean direction of D/ I = 11.1°/57.2° ( α95 = 5.7°). Palaeointensity was determined using the Coe modified Thellier method with systematic partial thermoremanent magnetization (pTRM) checks. All together, 61 samples from 286 samples with positive pTRM and tail checks yield palaeointensities ranging between 10.1 and 73.6 μT. To further check the effects of thermal alteration on the palaeointensity results, a new ratio ( Mrs,480°C/ Mrs,25°C, where Mrs,25°C and Mrs,480°C are the room temperature saturation isothermal remanent magnetizations for the raw sample and the product after a 480 °C thermal treatment, respectively) is proposed. Results show that the ratio changes significantly even for those samples with positive pTRM check. We further put forward that palaeointensity results are acceptable with ratio between 0.9 and 1.1. With this new criteria, 17 samples show consistent palaeointensity results with an average of 20.0 ± 3.2 μT. This value corresponds to the virtual dipole magnetic moments (VDM) of (3.5 ± 0.6) × 10 22 Am 2, which is about half of the value of present field. This finding, combined with other available results, suggests that magnetic field of the Earth just at the onset of the CNS is characterized by a weak palaeointensity.

  8. Assessing the duration of drowning episodes during the Early Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godet, A.; Föllmi, K. B.

    2013-12-01

    Drowning unconformities are stratigraphic key surfaces in the history of carbonate platforms. They mostly consist in the deposition of deep marine facies on top of shallow marine limestones. Although large-scale depositional geometries mimic lowstand systems track architecture, these sedimentary turnovers are developed in relation with major sea level rise, inducing an increase in the rate of creation of accommodation space that outpaces the capacity of carbonate to keep up. This so-called paradox of carbonate platform drowning implies that other parameters than purely eustatic fluctuations are involved in the demise of shallow marine ecosystems. Worldwide and at different time during Earth history, in-depth studies of drowning unconformities revealed that changes in nutrient input, clastic delivery, temperature, or a combination of them may be responsible for a decrease in light penetration in the water column and the progressive suffocation and poisoning of photosynthetic carbonate producers. The examination of such case examples from various stratigraphic intervals and palaeogeographical settings thus helps in identifying and hierarchizing potential triggering mechanisms for drowning unconformities. This is complemented by new data from Early Cretaceous successions from the Helvetic Alps. During this time period, the Helvetic carbonate platform developed along the northern Tethyan margin using both photozoan and heterozoan communities. Phases of healthy production were interrupted by several drowning episodes. The latter are marked in the sedimentary record by condensation and associated phosphogenesis and glauconitisation. From the earliest Valanginian to the early to late Barremian, three drowning unconformities reflect the intermittent installation of a more humid climate and subsequent enhanced trophic conditions, which first induced a switch from photozoan to heterozoan communities and then to long-lasting drowning phases. The latter encompass several sea

  9. Deccan volcanism at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Courtillot, V.; Vandamme, D.; Besse, J.

    1988-01-01

    The accuracy with which one can claim that Deccan trap volcanism occurred at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary (KTB) over a very short time interval is of key importance in deciding whether a volcanic origin of the KTB events should be taken seriously. In the two years since paleomagnetic, paleontological and geodynamic evidence was published, further data have become available and the case now appears to be well constrained. The Ar-40/Ar-39 results from six labs have yielded some 24 reliable plateau ages that narrow the age range to 65 to 69 Ma. Moreover, it appears that a significant part of this range results from inter-lab spread and possible minor alteration. Paleontology demonstrates that volcanism started in the Maestrichtian, more precisely in the A. mayaroensis zone. Paleomagnetism shows that volcanism spanned only 3 chrons and only one correlation remains possible, that of the main central reversed chron with 29R. Therefore, whereas Ar-40/Ar-39 is able only to restrict the duration of volcanism to some 4 Ma, paleomagnetism restricts it to 0.5 Ma. Using some geochemical indicators such as C-13 as proxy, it is suggested that volcanism actually consists of a few shorter events of unequal magnitude. Extrusion rates may be as high as 100 cu km/yr and fissure lengths as long as several 100 km. Such a scenario appears to be at least as successful as others in accounting for most anomalies observed at the KTB. Particularly important are Iridium and other platinum group elements (PGE) profiles, Sr-87/Sr-86, C-13, 0-18, other exotic geochemical signatures, spherules, soot, shocked minerals, selective and stepwise extinctions. The environmental impact of CO2 possibly released during explosive phases of volcanism, and SO2 released during effusive phases, and the ability of volcanism to ensure worldwide distribution of KTB products are now all addressed. In conclusion, the case for a causal link between internal hotspot activity, birth of the Reunion hotspot itself as

  10. Shock Deformation and Volcanism across the Cretaceous - Transition.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huffman, Alan Royce

    1990-01-01

    The cause of the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K/T) transition remains one of the most controversial scientific topics in the geosciences. Geological and geophysical evidence associated with the K/T boundary have been used to argue that the extinctions were caused by meteor impact or volcanism. The goal of this study was to assess the viability of a volcanic model for the K/T transition. Comparison of natural and experimentally-shocked quartz and feldspar using optical and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) revealed that the optical and statistical character of shock-induced microstructures in volcanic rocks are different from both classic impact microstructures, and from the Raton K/T samples. A series of 31 high-explosive (HE) shock-recovery experiments at pressures to 25 GPa and temperatures to 750^circC were completed on samples of granite and quartzite. TEM and optical microscopy reveal that pre-shock temperature and pulse duration have a first-order effect on the development of shock-induced microstructures in quartz and feldspar. Application of the experimental results to natural shock-induced microstructures indicates that the volcanic microstructures are probably produced at elevated temperatures and shock pressures that do not exceed 15 GPa. The results also suggest that the Raton K/T deposits were produced at pressures below about 25 GPa. Analysis of samples from the K/T transition at DSDP Site 527 and correlations between biostratigraphy, isotopes, and the data from this study suggest that the decline in marine productivity over an extended period of time may be due to climate changes induced by basaltic volcanism. The eruption of the Deccan Traps is a viable mechanism for the K/T extinctions, and the correlation of flood basalts with every major biotic crisis in the last 250 Ma supports the link between these two phenomena. Eruption of flood basalts enriched in F, Cl, CO_2 , and SO_2, could disrupt the terrestrial ecosystem, and could produce effects

  11. The overthrusted Zaza Terrane of middle Cretaceous over the North American continental carbonate rocks of upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous age - relationships to oil generation

    SciTech Connect

    Echevarria Rodriguez, G.; Castro, J.A.; Amaro, S.V.

    1996-08-01

    The Zaza Terrane is part of the Caribbean plate thrust over the southern edge of the North American basinal and platform carbonate rocks of upper Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous age. Zaza Terrane are volcanic and ophiolitic rocks of Cretaceous age. The ophiolites are mostly serpentines which behave as reservoirs and seals. All Cuban oil fields are either within Zaza Terrane or basinal carbonates underneath, or not far away to the north of the thrust contacts. It appears that the overthrusting of the Zaza Terrane caused the generation of oil in the basinal carbonate source rocks underneath, due to the increase of rock thickness which lowered the oil window to a deeper position and increased the geothermal gradient. Oil generation was after thrusting, during post-orogenic. API gravity of oil is light toward the south and heavy to very heavy to the north. Source rocks to the south are probably of terrigenous origin.

  12. Simulation of Monsoonal Characteristics of the East Asian Climate during the Mid-Cretaceous in a Coupled Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, J.; Wang, C.; Yang, J.; Guo, Y.

    2014-12-01

    To increase understanding of the future changes of the East Asian monsoon (EAM) under the current global warming background, we turn to investigate the EAM during the mid-Cretaceous (~90Ma), which is one of the warmest greenhouse climate episodes of the Phanerozoic. Utilizing the Community Earth System Model (CESM) version 1.03 from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), we simulate the global climate in the mid-Cretaceous, and some results can well match with some geological evidences. New indices of monsoon based on the seasonal/annual precipitation ratios are defined, and they can represent modern EAM well. Upon these indices, the simulation results demonstrate that the East Asia has been a typical monsoon region during the mid-Cretaceous, and then the mid-Cretaceous EAM were analyzed and compared with the modern EAM. According to the spatial pattern of the EAM index, the EAM region was divided into two subregions: East Asian low-latitude monsoon (EALM) and East Asian mid-latitude monsoon (EAMM). The mid-Cretaceous EALM was comparable to the modern one, as well as the summer and winter monsoon intensities. However, the monsoon index was reduced obviously in the mid-latitudes of East Asia, which indicates that the mid-Cretaceous EAMM was not as significant as modern. Thorough the analysis on the climatology in the EAMM region, the mid-Cretaceous summer/annual precipitation ratio was smaller than modern, while the winter/annual precipitation ratio was greater. This difference between the mid-Cretaceous and modern EAMM shows that the summer and winter monsoon intensities both weaken and that the uneven distribution of precipitation in different seasons is alleviated in the mid-Cretaceous world, therefore the mid-Cretaceous EAMM is a weaker system.

  13. Dynamic Earth Models: Sea Level and Vertical Motion of Continents since the Late Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spasojevic, S.; Gurnis, M.

    2010-12-01

    We show results from global dynamic earth models (DEMs) since the Late Cretaceous, which combine inverse and forward models of mantle convection, with viscosity that varies vertically and laterally. DEMs assimilate plate tectonic reconstructions, and account for the influence of the geoid and the evolving paleogeography of the sea floor self-consistently. Global DEMs are computed in the mantle frame, but we implement the integrated plate reconstruction-mantle convection system that enables linkage between geologic observations obtained in a plate frame of reference and dynamic topography, which is essential for sea-level studies. Since DEMs account for the most important factors controlling long-term sea-level change self-consistently, we present implications for the influence of the mantle on vertical motion of earth’s surface and regional and global sea-level change since Late Cretaceous. We find that neither dynamic topography nor eustasy dominant the global patterns of marine sedimentation on continents since the Late Cretaceous. Dynamic topography appears to be important in controlling the flooding patterns in North America, Australia and southern India since the Late Cretaceous, Sundaland since the Oligocene, and Arabia during Cenozoic. Eustasy has a larger role in controlling flooding in Eurasia and northern India. Mantle dynamics also seems to be an important factor contributing to Cenozoic long-wavelength tilting in Australia and Siberia. Interpretation of modeling results and the relative importance of eustatic versus dynamic factors is difficult in Africa and South America due to either unknown paleotopography or limited stratigraphic data.

  14. Eutherians experienced elevated evolutionary rates in the immediate aftermath of the Cretaceous-Palaeogene mass extinction.

    PubMed

    Halliday, Thomas John Dixon; Upchurch, Paul; Goswami, Anjali

    2016-06-29

    The effect of the Cretaceous-Palaeogene (K-Pg) mass extinction on the evolution of many groups, including placental mammals, has been hotly debated. The fossil record suggests a sudden adaptive radiation of placentals immediately after the event, but several recent quantitative analyses have reconstructed no significant increase in either clade origination rates or rates of character evolution in the Palaeocene. Here we use stochastic methods to date a recent phylogenetic analysis of Cretaceous and Palaeocene mammals and show that Placentalia likely originated in the Late Cretaceous, but that most intraordinal diversification occurred during the earliest Palaeocene. This analysis reconstructs fewer than 10 placental mammal lineages crossing the K-Pg boundary. Moreover, we show that rates of morphological evolution in the 5 Myr interval immediately after the K-Pg mass extinction are three times higher than background rates during the Cretaceous. These results suggest that the K-Pg mass extinction had a marked impact on placental mammal diversification, supporting the view that an evolutionary radiation occurred as placental lineages invaded new ecological niches during the Early Palaeocene. PMID:27358361

  15. Early Cretaceous extensional reworking of the Triassic HP-UHP metamorphic orogen in Eastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Wei; Ji, Wenbin; Faure, Michel; Wu, Lin; Li, Qiuli; Shi, Yonghong; Scharer, Urs; Wang, Fei; Wang, Qingchen

    2015-11-01

    Corresponding to the Early Mesozoic continental subduction between the North China Block (NCB) and the South China Block (SCB), the Tongbaishan-Hong'an-Dabieshan-Sulu massifs are famous for their HP-UHP metamorphism. More than 50% of the HP-UHP Orogenic Belt was significantly reworked by Early Cretaceous extensional tectonics. This Early Cretaceous event with a fast cooling period, at 130-120 Ma, superimposed on the Early Mesozoic HP-UHP orogenic belt and intensively changed the architecture of this orogen. Each individual segment documents different Early Cretaceous extensional structures, namely the central Tongbaishan domain is a metamorphic core complex (MCC) represented by an A-type non-cylindrical antiform; the central Dabieshan domain is a typical Cordilleran-type migmatite-cored MCC; the Southern Sulu UHP domain is a "wedge-shaped" structure exhumed by a simple detachment fault. These late stage extensional structures expose the previous HP-UHP orogenic belt as fragments along the NCB-SCB boundary. The geodynamic setting of this Early Cretaceous extensional tectonics along the HP-UHP orogen is a part of a 1000 km-scale crustal extension belt that is widespread in eastern Eurasia continent from Trans-Baikal to the central part of SCB. Convective erosion or delamination of the mantle lithosphere might be considered as a possible mechanism for mantle removal.

  16. Early Cretaceous extensional reworking of the Triassic HP-UHP metamorphic orogen in Eastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, W.; Ji, W.; Faure, M.; Wu, L.; Li, Q. L.; Shi, Y.; Scharer, U.; Wang, F.; Wang, Q.

    2015-12-01

    Corresponding to the Early Mesozoic continental subduction between the North China Block (NCB) and the South China Block (SCB), the Tongbaishan-Hong'an-Dabieshan-Sulu massifs are famous for their HP-UHP metamorphism. More than 50% of the HP-UHP Orogenic Belt was significantly reworked by Early Cretaceous extensional tectonics. This Early Cretaceous event with a fast cooling period, at 130-120 Ma, superimposed on the Early Mesozoic HP-UHP orogenic belt and intensively changed the architecture of this orogen. Each individual segment documents different Early Cretaceous extensional structures, namely the central Tongbaishan domain is a metamorphic core complex (MCC) represented by an A-type non-cylindrical antiform; the central Dabieshan domain is a typical Cordilleran-type migmatite-cored MCC; the Southern Sulu UHP domain is a "wedge-shaped" structure exhumed by a simple detachment fault. These late stage extensional structures expose the previous HP-UHP orogenic belt as fragments along the NCB-SCB boundary. The geodynamic setting of this Early Cretaceous extensional tectonics along the HP-UHP orogen is a part of a 1000 km-scale crustal extension belt that is widespread in eastern Eurasia continent from Trans-Baikal to the central part of the South China Block. Convective erosion or delamination of the mantle lithosphere might be considered as a possible mechanism for mantle removal.

  17. Seed ferns survived the end-Cretaceous mass extinction in Tasmania.

    PubMed

    McLoughlin, Stephen; Carpenter, Raymond J; Jordan, Gregory J; Hill, Robert S

    2008-04-01

    Seed ferns, dominant elements of the vegetation in many parts of the world from the Triassic to Cretaceous, were considered to have disappeared at the end of the Cretaceous together with several other groups that had occupied key positions in terrestrial and marine ecosystems such as dinosaurs, plesiosaurs, and ammonoids. Seed-fern demise is generally correlated with competition from diversifying flowering plants through the Cretaceous and the global environmental crisis related to the Chicxulub impact event in the paleotropics at the end of the period. New fossils from Tasmania show that one seed-fern lineage survived into the Cenozoic by at least 13 million years. These fossils are described here as a new species, Komlopteris cenozoicus. Komlopteris is a genus of seed ferns attributed to Corystospermaceae and until now was not known from sediments younger than the Early Cretaceous. Discovery of this "Lazarus taxon," together with the presence of a range of other relictual fossil and extant organisms in Tasmania, other southern Gondwanan provinces, and some regions of northern North America and Asia, underscores high-latitude regions as biodiversity refugia during global environmental crises and highlights their importance as sources of postextinction radiations. PMID:21632371

  18. Planktonic foraminiferal bioevents and faunal turnover across the Cretaceous Tertiary boundary in north of Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darvishzad, B.; Khaje Tash, R.

    2009-04-01

    In the north of Iran in the Galanderud area, similar to those known from the eastern Tethys realm, experienced unusually adverse environmental conditions for planktic foraminifera during the last two million years of the terminal Cretaceous to early Danian. This section is studied to determine the foraminiferal biozones of the upper Cretaceous to lower Paleocene and to detect patterns of foraminiferal changes across the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary. All late Maastrichtian planktic foraminiferal biozones CF1 to CF4, and Danian biozones P0 (Parvularugoglobogerina extensa) P1a (Parvularugoglobogerina eugubina) and Parasubbotina pseudobulloides are present. Faunal studies show that all but four of the Cretaceous species identified disappeared at or below the K-T boundary in zone CF1 (P. hantkeninoides). Another four species (Heterohelix globulosa, H. dentata, H. monmouthensis, G. cretacea) appear to have survived in to the early Danian. Early disappearances appear to be environmentally controlled. Coarse ornamented species with small populations disappeared first, where as small species will little or no ornamented and generally large populations tended to survive after the environment changing. This indicates a pattern of gradual and selective faunal turnover in planktonic foraminifera during the latest Maastrichtian and in to the earliest Danian that is similar to that observed at the El kef stratotype of Tunisia, as well as K-T sequences in west of Iran, Egypt, Italy, Spain and Mexico.

  19. Cretaceous drowning of reefs on mid-pacific and Japanese guyots.

    PubMed

    Matthews, J L; Heezen, B C; Catalano, R; Coogan, A; Tharp, M; Natland, J; Rawson, M

    1974-04-26

    Reefs dredged on guyots of the Mid-Pacific Mountains and the Japanese Seamounts yield middle Cretaceous fossils, indicating that submergence killed off the fauna of the reefs sometime during the Albian-Cenomanian. Eustatic rise of sea level is probably responsible. PMID:17736517

  20. Latitudinal Variation in δ13C derived from Terrestrial Plants during the Cretaceous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strganac, C.; Jacobs, L. L.; Ferguson, K.; Macphee, R. D.; Fiorillo, A. R.; Hooker, J.; Nishida, Y.; Flemming, C.

    2010-12-01

    Modern plankton and terrestrial plants exhibit a gradient in δ13C with latitude. Although there are several reasons for δ13C variation in plants, modern latitudinal variation is correlated with environmental and climatic factors such as temperature. We present δ13C values derived from mid-Cretaceous terrestrial plant fossils in Texas at paleolatitude ~30 N and Australia at paleolatitude ~70 S that show an offset in δ13C values, suggesting a latitudinal gradient in δ13C in plants during the Cretaceous. This hypothesis was tested by new data from Antarctica at paleolatitude ~60 S and Alaska at paleolatitude ~70 N, and we compared these data to published carbon isotope records. The latitudinal variation in plant δ13C was on the order of 2‰ more negative at high latitudes, suggesting a shallower Cretaceous latitudinal gradient in plant δ13C than at present. The shallow gradient in plant δ13C during the Cretaceous correlates with a latitudinal temperature gradient that is also less than today.

  1. Early Cretaceous mammal from North America and the evolution of marsupial dental characters.

    PubMed Central

    Cifelli, R L

    1993-01-01

    A mammal from the Early Cretaceous of the western United States, represented by a lower jaw exceptional in its completeness, presents unambiguous evidence of postcanine dental formula in an Early Cretaceous marsupial-like mammal, and prompts a reconsideration of the early evolution of marsupial dental characters. A marsupial postcanine dental formula (three premolars and four molars) and several marsupial-like features of the lower molars are present in the new taxon, but a hallmark specialization of marsupials (twinning of the hypoconulid and entoconid on lower molars) is lacking. This, coupled with recent evidence from the Late Cretaceous of the western United States, suggests that the distinctive marsupial dental formula evolved prior to the most characteristic specialization of lower molars and that apomorphies presumed to be diagnostic of the upper molars (such as auxiliary stylar cusps) were relatively more recent developments in marsupial history. Dental evidence supports the monophyly of higher (tribosphenic) mammals and suggests that the predominantly Old World Deltatheroida, recently proposed as a sister taxon to marsupials, represents a primitive and unrelated group of higher mammals; by this interpretation, early marsupials and their presumed close relatives are restricted to North America. This, together with the hypothesized relationships of South American/Australian marsupials (in the context of the North American Cretaceous radiation) and evidence from the fossil record of South America, in turn supports a North American origin for the group. Images Fig. 1 PMID:8415715

  2. A remarkable fossil leptosaldine bug from Mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Leptopodomorpha: Leptopodidae).

    PubMed

    Popov, Yuri A; Heiss, Ernst

    2016-01-01

    A new genus and species of leptosaldine bugs, Leptosaldinea cobbeni gen. et sp. nov. (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Leptopodidae) is described and illustrated from Burmese Middle Cretaceous (Albian-Cenomanian) amber found in Kachin State, northern Myanmar. This is the third record of a leptosaldine bug from Burmese amber. A brief analysis of the characters and systematic relationships of Leptosaldinae is provided. PMID:27470718

  3. Cretaceous source rock characterization of the Atlantic Continental margin of Morocco

    SciTech Connect

    Jabour, H. )

    1993-02-01

    Characterization of the petroleum potential for the Atlantic margin of Morocco has been based primarily on limited, antiently acquired organic geochemical data. These indicate the area of drilling behind the paleoshelf edge to be only fair in organic carbon and C15+ extract values with predominantly terrestrial kerogen types. Recently acquired geochemical data obtained from relatively recent drilling both behind and beyond the paleoshelf edge indicate 4 depositional facies containing hydrogen rich amorphous kerogen assemblages. These are: (1) Lower to Mid Jurassic inner shelf facies probably deposited in algal rich lagoon-like, (2) Lower Cretaceous non marine coaly facies probably deposited in algal rich swamplike environments, (3) Middle Cretaceous facies characterized by restrited anoxic environment with sediments rich in marine kerogen types deposited under sluggish wather circulation, (4) Upper Cretaceous to Tertiary outer-shelf to Upper slope facies probably deposited under algal-rich upwelling systems. Of these, the Cretaceous facies is the most widespread and represents the best source rock potential characteristics. Correlation of these facies to recently acquired good quality seismic packages allows for extrapolation of probable organic facies distribution throughout the continental margin. This should enhance the hydrocarbon potential of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic sediments both landward and seaward of the paleoshelf edge and thus permits refinement of strategies for hydrocarbon exploration in the area.

  4. Spherules from the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary clay at Gubbio, Italy: the problem of outcrop contamination

    SciTech Connect

    Montanari, A.

    1986-12-01

    Surficial outcrop contamination has occurred in some well-known stratigraphic sections of carbonate rocks in the northern Apennines. A critical case involves several contaminated clay partings, including the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary clay in the classic Bottaccione section near Gubbio, Italy. These clay layers contain shiny spherules which, in several recent studies, have been said to consist of volcanic glass and have been used to support the hypothesis that the terminal Cretaceous mass extinction was caused by widespread volcanism. Laboratory tests, however, indicate that these shiny spherules are made of HF-insoluble and combustible material and are therefore of recent biological origin. These objects were introduced into the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary clay and other clay layers from the surrounding soil along with abundant detrital contaminants derived from erosion of the middle Miocene flysch exposed at the head of the Bottaccione Gorge. They are completely different from the altered and flattened microtektitelike spheroids that are found only in the iridium-rich Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary clay and that provide strong evidence for a large impact.

  5. Diagenesis and reservoir characterization of the Cretaceous-Tertiary sequence, eastern Venezuela

    SciTech Connect

    Aquado, B.; Ghosh, S.; Isea, A. )

    1990-05-01

    The giant El Furrial field Maturin subbasin is the most important oil field discovered in Venezuela in the last three decades. The average oil column has a thickness of 400 m and the reservoirs consist of essentially sandy siliciclastic sediments of nearshore-shallow marine origin. The oil's API gravity ranges from light to extra heavy and occurs in a stratified manner in the reservoirs. A total of 1,080 m of core from the producing sequence was studied through x-ray diffraction scanning electron microscopy, and petrography. This data, along with petrophysical measurements, show a clear differentiation between the Upper Cretaceous and the Oligocene reservoirs. The Upper Cretaceous reservoirs are characterized by relatively fine and uniform grain size, subarkosic composition with common volcanic rock fragments, high degree of chemical and mechanical compaction highly illitic mixed-layer I/S assemblage with less than 10% expandable layers, and ubiquitous baroque dolomite. Additionally, porosity and permeability values are persistently low. Clearly, the Cretaceous sediments are diagenetically mature and may indicate diagenetic transformation at greater depths or under a different thermal regime. In contrast the coarser grained Oligocene reservoirs of quartz arenitic composition show a lesser diagenetic overprint, and greater porosity and permeability. Porosity is dominantly secondary due to cement and grain (mostly quartz) dissolution, as well as tectonically induced grain fracturing. Common kaolinite and minor amounts of I/S with up to 20% of expandable layers attest to a lower diagenetic regime than in the Cretaceous reservoirs.

  6. Upper Cretaceous and lower Eocene conglomerates of Western Transverse Ranges: evidence for tectonic rotation

    SciTech Connect

    Reed, W.E.; Krause, R.G.F.

    1989-04-01

    Stratigraphic and paleomagnetic studies have suggested that the western Transverse Ranges (WTR) microplate is allochthonous, and may have experienced translational and rotational motions. Present paleocurrent directions from the Upper Cretaceous Jalama Formation of the Santa Ynez Mountains are north-directed; these forearc sediments (Great Valley sequence) contain magmatic arc-derived conglomerate clasts from the Peninsular Ranges in southern California. Paleocurrents in the lower Eocene Juncal and Cozy Dell Formations are south-directed. This juxtaposition is best explained by 90/degrees/ or more of clockwise rotation of the WTR microplate, so that Upper Cretaceous forearc sediments sourced from the Peninsular Ranges magmatic arc were deposited by west-directed currents. Eocene sediments were derived from an uplifted portion of the western basin margin and deposited by east-directed currents. Franciscan olistoliths in the Upper Cretaceous sediments indicate deposition adjacent to an accretionary wedge; conglomeratic clasts recycled from the Upper Cretaceous sequence, and radiolarian cherts and ophiolitic boulders in the Eocene strata indicate derivation from an outer accretionary ridge.

  7. Selective extinction and survival across the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary in the northern Atlantic Coastal Plain

    SciTech Connect

    Gallagher, W.B. )

    1991-10-01

    The inner Atlantic Coastal Plain in New Jersey and the Delmarva Peninsula is underlain by an Upper Cretaceous-lower Tertiary sequence of marine and paralic sand, clay, and glauconitic beds. Campanian, Maastrichtian, Danian, and Thanetian deposits are especially fossiliferous and yield a succession of marine faunas that reveal a pattern of selective extinction and survival across the Cretaceous/Tertiary (K/T) boundary in this area. Cretaceous benthic invertebrate communities are dominated by oysters and other semi-infaunal and infaunal molluscs with planktotrophic larval stages. These are replaced in the Danian by brachiopod-dominated communities that are composed of epifaunal benthos with a variety of nonplanktotrophic reproductive strategies. A similar pattern is observable in the nektonic cephalopod populations in this sequence; the typical ammonites of the Cretaceous became extinct at the K/T boundary, whereas the nautilids survived. Ammonites are thought to have had a planktotrophic larval stage, whereas nautilids are known to lay large lecithotrophic eggs. This pattern of differential survival is attributed to the planktonic population crash at the K/T boundary which placed planktotrophically reproducing species at a disadvantage while favoring the varied groups that practiced alternative reproductive strategies.

  8. Controls on the distribution of Cretaceous source rocks in South America

    SciTech Connect

    Vear, A. )

    1993-02-01

    More than thirty South American basins, exhibiting a variety of structural styles, contain petroleum source rocks of Cretaceous age. However, the presence of truly [open quote]world-class[close quote] source rocks, capable of supplying multi-billion barrel oil provinces, is restricted to relatively few basins and appears to be primarily a function of large scale Cretaceous tectonic setting. In Early Cretaceous times the best source rocks were preserved in both a southern ocean and in the rift between South America and Africa. By the Late Cretaceous, these southern and eastern continental limits had become narrow passive margins. In contrast, on the northern continental margin a wide shelf to a restricted tropical sea was developing at this time. Periodic upwelling enhanced surface productivity on this shelf, which led to development of some of the world's richest source rocks. On the tectonically active western margin moderate quality source rocks were forming in a series of back-arc basins, whilst further west, in the Pacific fore-arc, organic-rich intervals were rarely deposited. This article documents what is known about each of the explored basins (including the volume and character of discovered petroleums), it investigates the geologic factors which governed the richness and quality of petroleum source rocks and it assesses how continued tectonic activity has modified or even destroyed primary source quality. Finally it predicts which of the as yet underexplored basins should contain good quality source rocks and could become prolific petroleum provinces of the future.

  9. The oldest psyllipsocid booklice, in Lower Cretaceous amber from Lebanon (Psocodea, Trogiomorpha, Psocathropetae, Psyllipsocidae)

    PubMed Central

    Azar, Dany; Nel, André

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Libanopsyllipsocus alexanderasnitsyni gen. et sp. n., of Psyllipsocidae is described and figured from the Lower Cretaceous amber of Lebanon. The position of the new taxon is discussed and the fossil is compared to other psyllipsocids. The species represents the earliest record of the family Psyllipsocidae. PMID:22259273

  10. Late Cretaceous chronology of large, rapid sea-level changes: Glacioeustasy during the greenhouse world

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, K.G.; Sugarman, P.J.; Browning, J.V.; Kominz, M.A.; Hernandez, J.C.; Olsson, R.K.; Wright, J.D.; Feigenson, M.D.; Van Sickel, W.

    2003-01-01

    We provide a record of global sea-level (eustatic) variations of the Late Cretaceous (99-65 Ma) greenhouse world. Ocean Drilling Program Leg 174AX provided a record of 11-14 Upper Cretaceous sequences in the New Jersey Coastal Plain that were dated by integrating Sr isotopic stratigraphy and biostratigraphy. Backstripping yielded a Late Cretaceous eustatic estimate for these sequences, taking into account sediment loading, compaction, paleowater depth, and basin subsidence. We show that Late Cretaceous sea-level changes were large (>25 m) and rapid (??? m.y.), suggesting a glacioeustatic control. Three large ??18O increases are linked to sequence boundaries (others lack sufficient ??18O data), consistent with a glacioeustatic cause and with the development of small (<106 km3) ephemeral ice sheets in Antarctica. Our sequence boundaries correlate with sea-level falls recorded by Exxon Production Research and sections from northwest Europe and Russia, indicating a global cause, although the Exxon record differs from backstripped estimates in amplitude and shape.

  11. Maps showing thermal maturity of Upper Cretaceous marine shales in the Wind River Basin, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Finn, Thomas M.; Pawlewicz, Mark J.

    2013-01-01

    The Wind River Basin is a large Laramide (Late Cretaceous through Eocene) structural and sedimentary basin that encompasses about 7,400 square miles in central Wyoming. The basin is bounded by the Washakie Range, Owl Creek, and southern Bighorn Mountains on the north, the Casper arch on the east and northeast, the Granite Mountains on the south, and the Wind River Range on the west. Important conventional and unconventional oil and gas resources have been discovered and produced from reservoirs ranging in age from Mississippian through Tertiary. It has been suggested that various Upper Cretaceous marine shales are the principal hydrocarbon source rocks for many of these accumulations. Numerous source rock studies of various Upper Cretaceous marine shales throughout the Rocky Mountain region have led to the conclusion that these rocks have generated, or are capable of generating, oil and (or) gas. With recent advances and success in horizontal drilling and multistage fracture stimulation there has been an increase in exploration and completion of wells in these marine shales in other Rocky Mountain Laramide basins that were traditionally thought of only as hydrocarbon source rocks. Important parameters that control hydrocarbon production from shales include: reservoir thickness, amount and type of organic matter, and thermal maturity. The purpose of this report is to present maps and a structural cross section showing levels of thermal maturity, based on vitrinite reflectance (Ro), for Upper Cretaceous marine shales in the Wind River Basin.

  12. Evidence of cretaceous to recent West African intertropical vegetation from continental sediment spore-pollen analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salard-Cheboldaeff, M.; Dejax, J.

    The succession of spore-pollen assemblages during the Cretaceous and Tertiary, as defined in each of the basin from Senegal to Angola, gives the possibility to consider the intertropical African flora evolution for the past 120 M.a. During the Early Cretaceous, xeric-adapted gymnosperms and various ferns were predominant the flora which nevertheless comprises previously unknown early angiosperm pollen. During the Middle Cretaceous, gymnospers were gradually replaced by angiosperms; these became more and more abundant, along with the diversification of new genera and species. During the Paleocene, the radiation of the monocotyledons (mainly that of the palm-trees) as well as a greater diversification among the dicotyledons and ferms are noteworthy. Since gymnosperms had almost disappeared by the Eocene, the diversification of the dicotyledons went on until the neogene, when all extinct pollen types are already present. These important modifications of the vegetation reflect evolutionary trends as well as climatic changes during the Cretaceous: the climate, firstly hot, dry and perhaps arid, did probably induced salt deposition, and later became gradually more humid under oceanic influences which arose in connection with the Gondwana break-up.

  13. The first well-preserved Early Cretaceous brachiosaurid dinosaur in Asia

    PubMed Central

    You, Hai-Lu; Li, Da-Qing

    2009-01-01

    A new genus and species of brachiosaurid sauropods, Qiaowanlong kangxii gen. et sp. nov., is reported, representing the first well-preserved Early Cretaceous brachiosaurid in Asia and expanding the distribution of brachiosaurids undoubtedly into the Asian continent. The new taxon was recovered from the late Early Cretaceous Xinminpu Group of Yujingzi Basin in northwestern Gansu Province, China, and is represented by a series of eight mid-cervical vertebrae, a right pelvic girdle and some unidentified bones. The existence of deeply excavated cervical neural spines and a rising transition in the neural spine height among mid-cervical vertebrae clearly show the affinity of Qiaowanlong as a member of brachiosaurids. Among brachiosaurids, Qiaowanlong shares a derived feature with the North American Early Cretaceous brachiosaurid Sauroposeidon: the lack of cranial centrodiapophyseal lamina. However, Qiaowanlong is unique in possessing a suite of features, such as a low central length/cotyle height ratio, bifurcated cervical neural spines and a much reduced ischium. The discovery of Qiaowanlong and other new material indicates a diverse and abundant sauropod assemblage in China during the Early Cretaceous. PMID:19734188

  14. Cretaceous Pacific plate movement beneath SE China: Evidence from episodic volcanism and related intrusions