Probing the deep shelf: a Lagerstätte from the upper ordovician of Girvan, southwestern Scotland

Stewart, S.E. and Owen, A.W. (2008) Probing the deep shelf: a Lagerstätte from the upper ordovician of Girvan, southwestern Scotland. Lethaia, 41(2), pp. 139-146. (doi:10.1111/j.1502-3931.2008.00117.x)

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A deep-water Konservat Lagerstätte from the lower Caradoc (Sandbian) at Girvan is dominated by the trilobite Diacanthaspis trippi, the carpoids Anatifopsis n. sp.? and a new genus of ctenocystoid together with the polyplacophoran Solenocaris solenoides and the brachiopod Onniella williamsi. Most of these are multi-element organisms, with many specimens preserved in an articulated state in finely laminated rocks, indicating minimal disturbance and suggesting that the fauna is largely an in situ association. It contains few of the species known from other deep-water sites of similar age at Girvan which contain diverse assemblages of trilobites and brachiopods absent from the Lagerstätte. The taphonomy of the site indicates preservation by rapid burial followed by early diagenesis under dysaerobic conditions. It provides a 'taphonomic window' on otherwise unknown faunas from distal shelf facies on the Ordovician Laurentian margin, and, moreover, is an important reminder of the hidden biodiversity that resided in thin-shelled, multi-element organisms.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Owen, Dr Alan
Authors: Stewart, S.E., and Owen, A.W.
Subjects:Q Science > QE Geology
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
Journal Name:Lethaia
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
ISSN (Online):1502-3931
Published Online:28 June 2008

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