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Palaeoenvironment and taphonomy of a Late Jurassic (Late Tithonian) Lagerstätte from central Poland







Adrian Kin [] Institute of Geological Sciences, Jagiellonian University, Oleandry 2a, 30-063 Kraków, Poland, and‘Phacops’ Association of Friends of Geosciences, Targowa 29, 90-043 Łódź, Poland; Michał Gruszczyński (deceased), Institute of Geography, Jan Kochanowski University, Świętokrzyska 15, 25-406 Kielce, Poland; David Martill [] School of Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Portsmouth, Burnaby Building, Burnaby Road, Portsmouth, PO1 3QL Portsmouth, UK; Jim Marshall [] School of Environmental Sciences, University of Liverpool, 4 Brownlow Street, L69 3GP Liverpool, UK; Błażej Błażejowski [] Institute of Paleobiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Twarda 51/55, 00-818 Warszawa, Poland; manuscript received on 4/1/2012; manuscript accepted on 21/3/2012.


A rich assemblage of exceptionally preserved marine and terrestrial fossils occurs in fine-grained limestones in the upper part of the Late Tithonian (Middle Volgian) shallowing upward carbonate sequence in Central Poland. The richest horizon, a deposit known locally as the Corbulomima horizon, is named after the shallow burrowing suspension feeding bivalve Corbulomima obscura, moulds of which occur in densities of up to 500 per square metre on some bedding planes. The fauna in this bed also includes organic and phosphatic remains of a wide range of other creatures including the exuviae of limulids and decapods, disarticulated fish skeletons and rare isolated pterosaur bones and teeth. There are also perfectly preserved dragonfly wings and beetle exoskeletons. The average stable carbon and oxygen isotope values for ostracod shells and fine-grained sediment from this horizon suggest precipitation of the calcium carbonate from warm seawater of normal marine salinity. The carbonate sediments overlying the fossiliferous horizon have been interpreted as nearshore to shoreface facies. These pass abruptly into coarse reworked intraclastic sediments interpreted as possible tsunami or storm surge over-wash deposits. The clasts in this deposit have more positive oxygen isotope values than those in the underlying limestone, which may indicate that they were lithified in a slightly more evaporative, perhaps intertidal, setting. The succession terminates with silicified fine-grained limestones likely to have formed in extremely shallow lagoonal environments. In contrast with the Solnhofen limestones of Lower Tithonian age in south-central Germany the Corbulomima horizon is interpreted as a transitional deposit formed in a shallow marine setting by rapid burial with elements of both Konservat- and Konzentrat-Lagerstätte preservation. □Konzentrat and Konservat-Lagerstätte, Taphonomy, Palaeoenvironment, Paleogeography, Late Jurassic, Poland.