Belaústegui, Z., Nebelsick, J.H., Gibert, J.M. de, Domènech, R. & Martinell, J. 2012: A taphonomic approach to the genetic interpretation of clypeasteroid accumulations from the Miocene of Tarragona, NE Spain. Lethaia, Vol. 45, pp. 548–565.
Clypeasteroid accumulations are common in Cenozoic shallow marine sediments, particularly in the Neogene, as they are also in analogue modern environments. In this article, four clypeasteroid accumulations from Miocene (Serravallian) shallow marine carbonates of the El Camp de Tarragona Basin (NE Spain) are studied. Two of them are dominated by flat-shaped Parascutella, whereas the other two consist exclusively of bell-shaped Clypeaster. The combination of the taphonomic analysis of the tests, the palaeoecological and taphonomic information provided by the associated fossils, and the stratigraphical and sedimentological context of each one of these beds allows interpreting them as autochthonous/parautochthonous accumulations resulting from in situ reworking in moderate energy settings, except for one that constitutes a true sand dollar coquina deposited by a storm event. This contribution explores the potential of thorough taphonomic analysis of marine invertebrate skeletal concentrations and substantiates the importance of clypeasteroid echinoids as producers of shell beds in the Neogene. □Clypeasteroids, Echinoids, Miocene, Taphonomy, Tarragona.