Abstract

Eighteen sites (152 samples, 441 specimens) from the Late Ordovician — Early Silurian sequence of Anticosti Island were studied paleomagnetically. Six sites were collected in the Vauréal Formation, seven in the Ellis Bay Formation, three in the Becscie Formation, and one each in the Gun River and Jupiter formations. The lithologies sampled consisted of limestones, sandy limestones, marls, and sandy calcareous shales drawn from a sedimentary platform sequence of predominantly inter-bedded limestones and shales. The specimens were demagnetized in alternating fields (AF) and thermally and were found to be quite stable. Two components of magnetization were isolated. The memory carrier is fine- to medium-grained magnetite; AF and thermal cleanings are about equally efficient. The average directions of residual magnetization are D = 167°, I = 37°, α95 = 18°; D = 315°, I = −24°, α95 = 17 °for components B and C, respectively. The corresponding paleopoles for the B and C components are 129°E, 19°N (dp = 12°, dm = 21°) and 341°E, 16°S (dp = 10°, dm = 18°).Component A is most probably composed of component C and the present Earth's field (PEF); it was chiefly observed in the more altered Vauréal Formation and in the altered top part of the cored samples. The most common component in the Ellis Bay, Becscie, Gun River, and Jupiter formations is component C. Component B is mainly found in the Becscie and Ellis Bay formations. Both components B and C are isolated in the 300–500 °C and 10–40 mT ranges. Component C is either older than component B or synchronous and of reverse polarity to component B. If this last alternative is correct, then the Ordovician and Silurian formations are overprinted by a pre-Kiaman magnetization. The more plausible scenario is the following: component B is secondary, of pre-Middle Carboniferous age, and overprinted on an older secondary magnetization (component C), the acquisition age of which is confined to the Silurian–Carboniferous time interval.

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