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You are here: Home / Library / RBINS Staff Publications / In search of the Latest Danian Event in a paleobathymetric transect off Kasserine Island, north-central Tunisia.

Jorinde Sprong, Tanja J Kouwenhoven, André Bornemann, Christian Dupuis, Robert P Speijer, Peter Stassen, and Etienne Steurbaut (2013)

In search of the Latest Danian Event in a paleobathymetric transect off Kasserine Island, north-central Tunisia.

Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 379-380:1-16.

Danian (lower Paleocene) sequences in north-central Tunisia are dominantly composed of marls and shales but a conspicuous, indurated glauconite-bearing marker bed is associated with the P3a–P3b transition. This glauconite bed is considered to correlate with the Latest Danian Event (LDE) described from the Nile Basin in Egypt, with the ‘top Chron C27n event’ (Atlantic and Pacific Oceans) and with the ‘CIE-DS1’ (Zumaia, Spain). The LDE is thought to reflect a short period of global warming, similar to the Paleocene Eocene Thermal Maximum, but of lesser magnitude. The presence of a glauconitic bed at the P3a/P3b transition in Tunisia suggests that the sequence is condensed, which is confirmed by planktic foraminifer and nannofossil biostratigraphy, and by the absence of the typical LDE beds found in most Egyptian sections. Benthic foraminiferal assemblages were quantitatively analyzed in three sections in north-central Tunisia (Sidi Nasseur, Garn Halfaya, Elles) in order to characterize the paleoenvironmental evolution during the late Danian and compare this with sections in Egypt. The benthic foraminiferal assemblages indicate that the Tunisian sections were located along a depth- and a paleoenvironmental gradient on the shelf north of Kasserine Island. The reconstructed depth range is comparable with sections in Egypt, and encompasses middle neritic (Sidi Nasseur section) to shallow upper bathyal depths (Elles section,with up to 16% Gavelinella beccariiformis below the P3a/P3b). Like in Egypt, assemblage shifts across the P3a/P3b subzonal transition indicate shallowing and a transition to amore eutrophic paleoenvironment, characterized by relatively high abundances of buliminids and Stainforthia sp. The δ13C and δ18O records generated on well-preserved specimens of the ostracode species Bairdia failed to demonstrate the presence of the carbon isotope excursion (CIE) associated with the LDE at the base of Subzone P3b. A condensed section or a hiatus associated with the glauconite bed would explain why the CIE is not recorded in the Tunisian sections.
Peer Review, Impact Factor, RBINS Collection(s)
palaeoenvironmental reconstruction, Paleontology
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