Coenocorrelation: gradient analysis of fossil communities and its applications in stratigraphy
Article first published online: 9 OCT 2007
Volume 11, Issue 4, pages 341–364, October 1978
How to Cite
CISNE, J. L. and RABE, BRUCED. (1978), Coenocorrelation: gradient analysis of fossil communities and its applications in stratigraphy. Lethaia, 11: 341–364. doi: 10.1111/j.1502-3931.1978.tb01893.x
- Issue published online: 9 OCT 2007
- Article first published online: 9 OCT 2007
Coenocorrelation is the correlation of positions in a stratigraphic sequence with corresponding positions along a paleoenvironmental gradient through gradient analysis of fossil communities. By ordination of community samples, the distribution and abundance of taxa along a depth gradient can be translated into a continuous scale that accurately measures the gradient and thus makes possible analysis of facies change on a continuum. The procedure is tested using data on marine benthic invertebrates along ten time-parallel transects down an Ordovician basin slope (Trenton Group, New York). Reversals between transgression and regression revealed in coenocorrelation curves served nearly as well as bentonite beds in time-correlation of sections. Ordinations gave estimates of depositional strike in close agreement with estimates from physical indicators. Walther's Law of Facies is evidently a more rigorous, quantifiable generalization than it has been revealed to be through classificatory approaches to communities and environments.