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A refined chronology for the Cambrian succession of southern Britain

Harvey, Thomas H.P.; Williams, Mark; Condon, Daniel J.; Wilby, Philip R.; Siveter, David J.; Rushton, Adrian W.A.; Leng, Melanie J.; Gabbott, Sarah E.. 2011 A refined chronology for the Cambrian succession of southern Britain. Journal of the Geological Society, 168 (3). 705-716. 10.1144/0016-76492010-031

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Abstract/Summary

three dated (U–Pb, zircon) ash beds from biostratigraphically constrained Avalonian successions of Shropshire (England) and Pembrokeshire (Wales) delimit the traditional ‘Lower'–‘Middle' Cambrian boundary and resolve a problematic regional correlation. In Shropshire, a date of 514.45 ± 0.36 [0.81 including tracer calibration and 238U decay constant errors] Ma from near the top of the Lower Comley Sandstone Formation provides a maximum age for the boundary between Cambrian Stages 3 and 4, and a date of 509.10 ± 0.22 [0.77 including tracer calibration and 238U decay constant errors] Ma from the basal Quarry Ridge Grits, Upper Comley Sandstone Formation, provides a minimum age for the boundary between Cambrian Stages 4 and 5 (and thus Series 2 and 3). These dates offer a calibration of early metazoan evolution by directly constraining the age of the intervening Comley Limestones, which contain diverse small shelly fossils in addition to trilobites, and also a key early occurrence of exceptional, three-dimensionally preserved arthropods. In Pembrokeshire, an ash bed from the Caerfai Bay Shales Formation dates to 519.30 ± 0.23 [0.77 including tracer calibration and 238U decay constant errors] Ma, equivalent to a horizon low in the Lower Comley Sandstone Formation of Shropshire, possibly around the level at which trilobites make their first local appearance.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1144/0016-76492010-031
Programmes: BGS Programmes 2010 > NERC Isotope Geoscience Laboratory
ISSN: 0016-7649
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Date made live: 03 May 2011 12:19
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/13881

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