Challenges of Gondwanan marine-nonmarine correlations - a palynological perspective

Annette Elizabeth Goetz, Alexander Wheeler

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    Marine–nonmarine correlations of the Permian of Laurussia are recently addressed using integrated sedimentological–palaeontological–geochemical signatures aiming to refine existing correlation schemes. However, for Gondwana such efforts are still in an early stage, with first studies on single localities and within distinct basins. Palynology is seen to be the key discipline to tackle this challenge and recent efforts to use climatic signatures recorded in palynomorph assemblages for cross-basin and interbasinal correlations of Karoo-aged basins in southern Africa are very promising. Their near continuous basin fill from the Pennsylvanian to the Early Jurassic captures the most prominent climate change in the Phanerozoic. Postglacial coal-bearing successions of Permian and Triassic age in the Main Karoo Basin of South Africa enable detailed studies of changing vegetation on land. Marine black shales capture changes in paleoceanographic conditions as reflected in marine phytoplankton assemblages and changing terrestrial input of pollen grains and spores, enabling precise correlation of terrestrial coals and marine shales. Ongoing research aims to establish the use of climate signals recorded in terrestrial and marine palynofacies for correlation on a Gondwana-wide, interregional scale.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)748-754
    JournalPaleontological Journal
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


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