Bahamian carbonate platform development in response to paleoceanographic changes.

Reijmer, John, Betzler, C., Kroon, D., Tiedemann, Ralf and Eberli, G. P. (2002) Bahamian carbonate platform development in response to paleoceanographic changes. International Journal of Earth Sciences, 91 . pp. 482-489. DOI 10.1007/s00531-001-0235-x.

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In this paper we show that the development of the sediment architecture at the leeward toe-of-slope of Great Bahama Bank (Ocean Drilling Project Leg 166, Bahama Transect) during the last 6 Ma is not only a response to sea-level fluctuations, but also to major paleo-oceanographic and climatic changes. A major sequence boundary close to the Miocene/Pliocene boundary (dated at 5.6–5.4 Ma) is interpreted to reflect a major sea-level drop that was followed by a sea-level rise, which led to the re-flooding of the Mediterranean Sea at the end of the Messinian and increasing sea-surface temperatures at Great Bahama Bank. Distinct erosional horizons occurred during the Pliocene (dated at 4.6 and 3.3–3.6 Ma) related to sea-level change and the intensification of the Gulf Stream when the emergence of the Isthmus of Panama reached a critical threshold. The Gulf Stream brings warm, saline and nutrient-poor waters to the Bahamas. Starting at the Early–Late Pliocene boundary at 3.6 Ma this paleo-oceanographic reorganization in combination with enhanced sea-level fluctuations associated with the Late Pliocene main intensification in Northern Hemisphere Glaciation (since 3.2 Ma) led to (1) a gradual change from a ramp-type to a flat-topped type morphology, and (2) a change from a skeletal to a non-skeletal-dominated sedimentary system (mainly peloidal). Increased sea-level fluctuations during the second half of the Pleistocene led to an intensified high stand-shedding depositional pattern within the surrounding basins.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Bahamas; Carbonate platform evolution; Paleo-oceanography; Miocene–Holocene; Sequence stratigraphy; ODP Leg 154, 165, 166
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-P-OZ Paleo-Oceanography
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1007/s00531-001-0235-x
ISSN: 1437-3254
Projects: ODP
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2008 17:25
Last Modified: 30 May 2018 08:58

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