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Title

Paleoenvironmental evolution of the Pliocene Villaroya Lake, northern Spain. A multidisciplinary approach

AuthorsAnadón, Pere ; Burjachs, Francesc; Martín, M.; Rodríguez-Lázaro, Julio; Robles, F.; Utrilla, Rosa ; Vázquez, Antonio
Keywordscharophytes
molluscs
pollen
pliocene
climate
ostracods
lacustrine deposits
clay mineralogy
Issue Date2002
PublisherElsevier
CitationSedimentary Geology 148: 9- 27 (2002)
AbstractThe Pliocene Villarroya basin fill consists of lacustrine and alluvial deposits over 100 m thick. The lacustrine deposits, up to 30 m thick, comprise three sequences. The two lower sequences consist of profundal, laminated deposits formed by mostly terrigenous facies that are overlain by charophytic carbonates and varves. The uppermost, third sequence made up of massive bioturbated mudstones corresponds to a very shallow lacustrine-palustrine environment. Bulk mineralogy comprises carbonates, clay minerals, quartz and feldspars. The carbonates are: exogenic, biogenic calcite and biogenic aragonite. Biogenic calcite constitutes ostracod shells and charophyte stem encrustations, whereas aragonite forms gastropod shells and, in some varve intervals, charophyte encrustations. The clay minerals are illite, kaolinite, palygorskite, chlorite and paragonite, which are inherited from source rocks, and smectite and interstratified clays, which are probably formed in the soils of the source area. Variations in clay mineralogy reflect the interplay between the climate, tectonic rejuvenation and the paleogeography of the basin. The pollen assemblages indicate significant variations in climate: a first phase of varying climate was followed by cool-temperate and sub-humid phases that culminated in a temperate and dry episode, which is recorded in the lower part of the second lacustrine sequence. This was succeeded by a marked warm and humid episode, which may be correlated with the Mid- Pliocene warmth about 3.0 Ma and the subsequent cooling phase, which is recorded in the upper, third sequence. In the two lower sequences (profundal lacustrine deposits), ostracods indicate oligosaline to mesosaline waters with salinity variations and some warm and Na-Cl episodes. Molluscs are characterized by hydrobiids, suggesting a salinity stress. In the upper, palustrine deposits, the ostracods and aquatic mollusc assemblages indicate fresh, cold waters. Faunal records indicate that changes in salinity do not correlate with climate, suggesting phases of significant saline inputs to the lake which were recorded in the lower first sequence and in the upper part of the second sequence. The lacustrine sequence of Villarroya record pronounced variations in climate and in the lacustrine environment. However, there are no consistent relationships between the climate conditions inferred from the pollen data and the sedimentary record of the environmental changes, showing that other factors, especially tectonics, have exerted an influence on the paleoenvironmental evolution, and on the sedimentary record of the Pliocene Villarroya lake. © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/142830
DOI10.1016/S0037-0738(01)00208-1
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/S0037-0738(01)00208-1
issn: 0037-0738
Appears in Collections:(ICTJA) Artículos
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