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Messinian paleoenvironmental evolution in the lower Guadalquivir Basin (SW Spain) based on benthic foraminifera.
Pérez-Asensio, José N. (José Noel); Aguirre, J.; Schmiedl, G.; Civis Llovera, J.
Universitat de Barcelona
Benthic foraminiferal assemblages of a drill core from the lower Guadalquivir Basin (northern Gulf of Cádiz, SW Spain) have been analyzed in order to reconstruct the paleoenvironmental evolution in the vicinity of the Betic seaways during the Messinian. The core consists of marine sediments ranging from the latest Tortonian to the early Pliocene. Changes in the abundance of certain marker species, planktonic/benthic ratio (P/B ratio), paleodepth estimated with a transfer function, content of sand grains and presence of glauconitic layers indicate a complete transgressive-regressive sea-level cycle from the bottom to the top of the section. An abrupt sea-level rise, from inner-middle shelf to middle slope, is recorded at the lowermost part of the core (latest Tortonian-earliest Messinian), followed by a relatively rapid shallowing from middle slope to outer shelf. Magnetobiostratigraphic data show that this sea-level fall postdates the onset of the Messinian salinity crisis (MSC) in the Mediterranean. Finally, the early Pliocene deposits are interpreted as inner-middle shelf. Changes in the benthic foraminiferal assemblages through the core are mainly controlled by the trophic conditions, specifically by the quantity and quality of the organic matter reaching the sea floor. The upper slope and part of the outer shelf assemblages are highly diverse and dominated by shallow infaunal species, indicating a generallymesotrophic environment with moderate oxygenation. These environments have likely been affected by repeated upwelling events, documented by increased abundance of Uvigerina peregrina s.l., an opportunistic species thriving in environmentswith enhanced labile organic matter supply. The assemblages of the transitional interval between upper slope to outer shelf, and of the outer shelf are generally characterized by a relatively low diversity and epifaunal-shallow infaunal taxa, indicating oligotrophic and well-oxygenated conditions. The innermiddle shelf assemblages are characterized by very lowdiversity and dominance of intermediate to deep infaunal taxa, suggesting an eutrophic environmentwith lowoxygen content. These assemblages are dominated by Nonion fabum and Bulimina elongata, two taxa that are able to feed from continental low-quality organicmatter,most likely derived from river run-off. The paleoenviromental evolution on the Atlantic side of Betic and Rifian seaways is similar during the Messinian, with a Messinian continuous sea-level lowering driven by regional tectonic uplift and upwelling-related waters reaching the upper slope. This study will further contribute to understand the role of tectonics on the sea-level changes as well as on the closure of the Atlantic-Mediterranean gateways that led to the MSC, and on the paleoceanography on the Atlantic sides of these corridors.
Messinià
Foraminífers
Bentos
Bajo Guadalquivir (Andalusia)
Messinian
Foraminifera
Benthos
Bajo Guadalquivir Region (Andalusia)
(c) Elsevier B.V., 2012
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info:eu-repo/semantics/acceptedVersion
Elsevier B.V.
         

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