MICRO- AND MACROFOSSILS FROM TERRACE DEPOSITS, TAYLOR VALLEY, ANTARCTICA
Results indicate that sea-ice and fossil deposits contained foraminifera, echinoderm spines and sponge spicules; ostracodes were present in sea-ice samples. Abundance of foraminifera varied widely in terrace samples, ranging from 98 to 4 individuals, while sponge spicules and echinoderm spines were relatively rare in all samples. Ostracodes were common in sea-ice samples. Both sea-ice and fossil samples contained either mostly calcareous or mostly agglutinated foraminifera. Taphonomic ranking for terrace deposits was 2.12, while sea-ice samples ranked 2.57, indicating slightly more abrasion and dissolution in the sea-ice samples. Overall, the fossil and sea-ice samples were very similar, which is not surprising as portions of the seafloor are uplifted by anchor ice and welded to the bottom of sea ice, and through ablation and sublimation, the formerly benthic samples are exposed to the surface. While more sediment samples are being processed, is is quite possible that both sea-ice and uplifted terrace deposits can both contributed to the fossil record in the dry valleys of Antarctica.