9. Coralline Algae, Oysters and Echinoids – a Liaison in Rhodolith Formation from the Burdigalian of the Latium-Abruzzi Platform (Italy)

  1. Maria Mutti3,
  2. Werner Piller4 and
  3. Christian Betzler5
  1. Marco Brandano1 and
  2. Werner E. Piller2

Published Online: 3 APR 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118398364.ch9

Carbonate Systems during the Oligocene-Miocene Climatic Transition

Carbonate Systems during the Oligocene-Miocene Climatic Transition

How to Cite

Brandano, M. and Piller, W. E. (2012) Coralline Algae, Oysters and Echinoids – a Liaison in Rhodolith Formation from the Burdigalian of the Latium-Abruzzi Platform (Italy), in Carbonate Systems during the Oligocene-Miocene Climatic Transition (eds M. Mutti, W. Piller and C. Betzler), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118398364.ch9

Editor Information

  1. 3

    Institut für Erd- und Umweltwissenschaften Universität Potsdam, Postfach 60 15 53 D-14415 Potsdam, Germany

  2. 4

    Institute for Earth Sciences (Geology & Paleontology) University of Graz, Heinrichstrasse 26, A-8010 Graz, Austria

  3. 5

    Geologisch-Palaeontologisches Institut, Bundesstr. 55, D-20146 Hamburg, Germany

Author Information

  1. 1

    Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra, Universitá di Roma “La Sapienza”, Ple Aldo Moro 5, I-00185, Roma, Italy

  2. 2

    Institute of Earth Sciences, Geology and Palaeontology, University of Graz, Heinrichstrasse 26, A-8010, Graz, Austria

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 3 APR 2012
  2. Published Print: 5 APR 2012

Book Series:

  1. Special Publication Number 42 of the International Association of Sedimentologists

Book Series Editors:

  1. Ian Jarvis6,7

Series Editor Information

  1. 6

    School of Geography, Geology and the Environment Centre for Earth and Environmental Science Research, Kingston University London, UK

  2. 7

    Penrhyn Road, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2EE, UK

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781444337914

Online ISBN: 9781118398364

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Keywords:

  • Burdigalian;
  • coralline algae;
  • palaeoecology;
  • carbonate ramp

Summary

The sedimentology and palaeontology of a rhodolith interval in a middle-ramp setting of the Early Miocene Latium-Abruzzi carbonate platform in central Italy is described. This rhodolith interval (7 m thick) shows a vertical facies sequence from a coralline branch rudstone at the base, to a rhodolith floatstone, a rhodolith rudstone and a coralline algal–oyster rudstone to bind/framestone, topped by a further coralline branch rudstone. Rhodolith nucleation took place mainly on neopycnodont oyster shells or bryozoan colonies. The coralline algal flora is dominated by the genera Lithothamnion and Mesophyllum, pointing to a slightly deeper-water setting. A total of 12 taxa are systematically described. The dominant species, Lithothamnion cf. macrosporangicum, is morphologically highly variable and has the capability to grow on different substrates, but also to produce a carbonate framework on and between a neopycnodont oyster pavement. All sedimentological and biogenic characters of the rhodolith levels point to a low-energy palaeoenvironment. The movement of rhodoliths can therefore not be attributed to waves or currents, but is ascribed to biogenic activity, particularly to that of regular echinoids.