2004 Denver Annual Meeting (November 7–10, 2004)

Paper No. 4
Presentation Time: 2:15 PM


DILLIARD, Kelly A., Department of Geology, Washington State Univ, Pullman, WA 99164-2812, POPE, Michael C., Geology, Washington State Univ, Pullman, WA 99164, HASIOTIS, Stephen T., Department of Geology, The Univ of Kansas, 1475 Jayhawk Blvd, 120 Lindley Hall, Lawrence, KS 66045-7613 and LIEBERMAN, Bruce S., Department of Geology, University of Kansas, Lindley Hall, 1475 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 120, Lawrence, KS 66045, kdilliard@wsu.edu

Three new high-resolution d13C curves for the Early Cambrian Sekwi Formation, Northwest Territories, Canada provide a framework for understanding the local and regional geologic development of the western Laurentian carbonate platform.  Each curve contains 250 to 500 d13C measurements from samples collected every 1 to 1.5 m.  Two of the three curves, Caribou Pass and Section 4, span the upper Fallotaspis, Nevadella, and Bonnia-Olenellus trilobite zones as well as the Early-Middle Cambrian boundary.  The resolution of the Lower Cambrian d13C curve is much finer than trilobite biozones and may provide a way to further subdivide time in the Early Cambrian.

A representative d13C curve for the Early Cambrian Sekwi Formation is from Caribou Pass, which closely replicates the V-IX oscillations of Brasier and Sukhov's (1998) Early Cambrian d13C curve.  The base of the Caribou Pass curve has very negative values (-2 to -3 ‰PDB) that rise to values of +3 ‰PDB.  These high values are overlain by values between +0.5 to +2 ‰PDB that continue up through the Nevadella zone.  A break in the d13C curve occurs at the base of the Bonnia-Olenellus zone due to the formation of a regional sandstone unit that likely formed during the initial part of the Sinsk transgression.  Overlying the sandstone the d13C values hover near 0 and then decrease to -3 ‰PDB in a stepwise manner similar to the Brasier and Sukhov (1998) curve.  Another gap in the Caribou Pass section corresponds to a thick section of red beds that likely formed during the Hawkes Bay regressive episode near the middle of the Bonnia-Olenellus zone.  Above the red beds, d13C values oscillate between +1 and -1 ‰PDB until approaching the Early-Middle Cambrian boundary.  The Caribou Pass curve deviates from the Brasier and Sukhov (1998) positive rise across  the Early-Middle Cambrian boundary, and is instead marked by two negative spikes (-2 and <-4 ‰PDB).  This deviation to markedly negative values was documented elsewhere in western Laurentia (Montanez et al., 2000) and may mark a significant regional or possibly global event.