Intra-messinian gypsum palaeokarst in the Northern Apennines and its palaeogeographic implications

Authors

  • Jo De Waele,

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, Italian Institute of Speleology, Bologna University, 40126 Bologna, Italy
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  • Giancarlo Pasini

    1. Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, Italian Institute of Speleology, Bologna University, 40126 Bologna, Italy
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Correspondence: Jo De Waele, Dipartimento di Scienze Biologiche, Geologiche ed Ambientali, Università di Bologna Alma Mater Studiorum, Via Zamboni 67, Bologna 40126, Italy. Tel.: +39 051 2094543; fax: +39 051 2094522; e-mail: jo.dewaele@unibo.it; giancarlopasini@alice.it

Abstract

A short intra-Messinian continental period has been recognised in some North Italian gypsum areas, mostly under the form of palaeokarst deposits. This emersion appears to have occurred only locally, and is explained as caused by the intra-Messinian tectonic phase and a major sea level lowering. Evidences of this palaeokarst are mostly small, although at some places the palaeontological content of its fillings is of great importance. The discovery near Zola Predosa (Bologna) of a new intra-Messinian extensive karst system and of its infilling sheds new light on the importance of this karst episode.

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