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Kershaw, 1980

Cavities and cryptic faunas beneath non-reef stromatoporoids

Kershaw, S.
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Stromatoporoids from level‐bottom shales and argillaceous limestones in the Silurian of Gotland, Sweden, form substrates for a variety of encrusting and boring organisms. Overturned stromatoporoids have encrusters and borers on both upper and lower surfaces, while coenostea preserved in situ have encrusters on both surfaces but borings on upper surfaces only. This suggests that cavities, now infilled, existed below coenostea. The stromatoporoids are isolated and not part of a reef framework where growth alone could have created overhangs and cavities. The scouring activity of currents removing sediment from around and beneath the edges of coenostea, and small current‐controlled movements leaving stromatoporoids imperfectly settled on the uneven substrate or partly overlying skeletal debris, are invoked to explain the presence of cavities and hence encrusters on stromatoporoid lower surfaces. Both processes probably operated on many specimens. The lower surfaces of these stromatoporoids also show basal concavities which range from shallow to deep and reflect the topography of the substrate and the success of stromatoporoids growing on positive features from which they could shed sediment easily. Overturned stromatoporoids and coenostea with deep, encrusted, basal concavities, point to violent environmental events, such as storms, more powerful than currents producing scour and small movements of coenostea.

Viimati muudetud: 23.1.2024
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