The Conflicting Paleontologic versus Stratigraphic Record of the Formation of the Caribbean Seaway
Published:January 01, 2003
Manuel A. Iturralde-Vinent, 2003. "The Conflicting Paleontologic versus Stratigraphic Record of the Formation of the Caribbean Seaway", The Circum-Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean: Hydrocarbon Habitats, Basin Formation and Plate Tectonics, Claudio Bartolini, Richard T. Buffler, Jon F. Blickwede
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This paper presents a set of paleogeographic maps that illustrate the formation and evolution of the Caribbean from latest Triassic to latest Jurassic. Stratigraphic data and plate-tectonic models indicate that the Caribbean first evolved as a system of latest Triassic–Middle Jurassic rift valleys in west-central Pangea. Probably since the Bajocian, but certainly since the Oxfordian, it became a marine seaway connecting western Tethys with the eastern Pacific. In contrast, abundant paleontological data strongly suggest that the seaway across west-central Pangea opened during the Early Jurassic (Hettangian-Pliensbachian), which data conflict with the stratigraphic data. This contradiction between paleontology (biogeographic interpretations) and stratigraphy (paleogeographic interpretation) reveals our insufficient knowledge about the Mesozoic geology of west-central Pangea.
This paper is a contribution to IUGS/UNESCO IGCP Project 433.
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The Circum-Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean: Hydrocarbon Habitats, Basin Formation and Plate Tectonics
The Circum-Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean has long been one of the world's most important petroleum provinces, as well as one of the world's most geologically complex regions. These two characteristics have resulted in an extensive amount of ongoing research by both industry and academia. AAPG Memoir 79, The Circum-Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean, is the first volume in more than a decade to document such a wide range of research on the geology of this vast area. Of the total 44 papers, roughly two-thirds pertain to the Gulf of Mexico, with an emphasis on the Mexican portion of the basin, and to the petroliferous areas of the southern Caribbean, including Colombia, Venezuela, Cuba, and Trinidad and Tobago. The remaining papers relate to the Antilles and Central America, as well as a series of papers that address region-wide topics such as plate tectonic evolution. A significant number of papers were contributed by authors from national oil companies and universities from within the region.