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Deep sea rock record exhumed on oceanic volcanic islands: the Cretaceous sediments of Maio, Cape Verde

Abstract : Revising the deep water stratigraphy exposed on Maio offers a key section recording the sedimentary evolution in the distal domain of the Central Atlantic and the related North West African Atlantic margin (NWAAM). The oceanic volcanic island is one of nine islands in the Cape Verde archipelago, and is unique to the Central Atlantic due to the exposures of ophiolites and the overlying Mesozoic deep water sediments uplifted during the Cenozoic. This provides the opportunity to assess at outcrop, the exhumed sediments, stratigraphy and palaeo-environments of the early Central Atlantic and contribute towards the knowledge of passive margin evolution along the NWAAM, part of the largest continental remnant of Gondwana. Combined with the previous recording of calpionellids, the first collection of lower Valanginian ammonites from the lowest sedimentary succession provides conclusive evidence that Jurassic sediments are not present on Maio. Bed-by-bed sampling and ensuing micro-palaeontological analysis of these 71 samples, together with a re-interpretation of Stahlecker's remaining historical palaeontological collection providing a comprehensive dataset to build a high-resolution stratigraphic framework for the Mesozoic sediments. This reveals pelagic deep water limestones of the Morro Fm. were deposited until the upper Barremian. A major lithological change from carbonate- to siliciclastic-dominated facies, corresponding to the Morro-Carquiejo Fm. boundary is recognised as a regional hiatus spanning part of the Aptian identified across the Central Atlantic. The overlying Albian and younger Carquiejo Fm. is seen as an equivalent to the Albian-Cenomanian black shales of DSDP Leg 41, yet organic content is absent due to degradation. Future studies can build on this multi-disciplinary investigation revising the stratigraphy of Maio
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Submitted on : Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - 8:48:05 AM
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Max Casson, Luc Bulot, Jason Jeremiah, Jonathan Redfern. Deep sea rock record exhumed on oceanic volcanic islands: the Cretaceous sediments of Maio, Cape Verde. Gondwana Research, Elsevier, 2020, 81, pp.252-264. ⟨10.1016/j.gr.2019.11.007⟩. ⟨hal-03016464⟩

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