Sediment mixing and stratigraphic disorder revealed by the age-structure of Tellina shells in Great Barrier Reef sediment

Kosnik, Matthew A., Hua, Quan, Jacobsen, Geraldine E., Kaufman, Darrell S., and Wust, Raphael A. (2007) Sediment mixing and stratigraphic disorder revealed by the age-structure of Tellina shells in Great Barrier Reef sediment. Geology, 35 (9). pp. 811-814.

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Abstract

Radiocarbon-calibrated amino acid racemization ages of 250 individually dated Tellina shells from two sediment cores are used to quantify molluscan time averaging with increasing burial depth in the shallow-water carbonate lagoon of Rib Reef, central Great Barrier Reef, Australia. The top 20 cm of sediment contain a distinct, essentially modern assemblage with a median age of only 5 yr. Sediment between 20 and 125 cm are age-homogeneous and significantly older than the surface sediment (median age 189 yr). Shell age distributions within layers indicate that the top 125 cm of lagoonal sediment is thoroughly mixed on a subcentennial scale. Shell size is an important correlate of shell half-life and an important determinant of the inferred age of sedimentary layers. These results illustrate the importance of bioturbation in these environments, indicate that age estimates in this depositional setting are sensitive to specimen choice, and document a size-dependent bias in death assemblage formation.

Item ID: 2560
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: mollusca; carbonate sediments; size distribution; time averaging; taphonomy; bio-turbation
ISSN: 1943-2682
Date Deposited: 06 May 2009 22:35
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0405 Oceanography > 040503 Physical Oceanography @ 50%
04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0403 Geology > 040310 Sedimentology @ 25%
04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0403 Geology > 040311 Stratigraphy (incl Biostratigraphy and Sequence Stratigraphy) @ 25%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970104 Expanding Knowledge in the Earth Sciences @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9699 Other Environment > 969902 Marine Oceanic Processes (excl. Climate Related) @ 25%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9611 Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water > 961104 Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water in Marine Environments @ 25%
Citation Count from Web of Science Web of Science 26
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