Abstract

Pre-Mesozoic rocks are exposed on the southeastern third of Grand Manan Island and adjacent offshore islands in the Bay of Fundy. U–Pb (zircon) ages reported here demonstrate that most of these rocks are late Neoproterozoic to Early Cambrian. The oldest dated unit is the Ingalls Head Formation, from which two felsic tuff samples yielded ages of 617.6 ± 3.2 and 618.3 ± 2.8 Ma. The Three Islands granite, exposed only on offshore islands, is younger than the Ingalls Head Formation at 611.1 ± 2.4 Ma. It provides a minimum age for marble of the Kent Island Formation, which occurs as large xenoliths in the granite. The High Duck Island granite yielded an age of 547.3 ± 1.1 Ma, providing a minimum late Neoproterozoic age for the host Long Island Bay Formation. An age of 539.0 ± 3.3 Ma from a dacitic lithic-crystal tuff demonstrates that the Priest Cove Formation is earliest Cambrian; this supersedes a Silurian age previously suggested on the basis of poorly documented fossil evidence. The Long Pond Bay Formation is considered to be the youngest pre-Mesozoic unit on Grand Manan Island, based on petrological features, but a felsic intrusive sample from the unit yielded ca. 588 Ma xenocrystic zircon grains that provide only a maximum age for the unit. Although lack of exposed contacts or U–Pb ages from a few units precludes a complete stratigraphic picture, the ages reported here deomonstrate that most pre-Mesozoic units on Grand Manan Island are not Paleozoic as previously assumed. Some units on Grand Manan Island show similarities in rock types and ages to components in the Islesboro block in Penobscot Bay in coastal Maine. Overall, the range of ages and rock types suggests that they correlate with the New River and Mascarene terranes of southern New Brunswick, requiring an offset of at least 40 km between southern New Brunswick and adjacent Maine along the Grand Manan – Oak Bay fault system. Hence, both the Ganderia–Avalonia and Avalonia–Meguma boundaries lie farther offshore than Grand Manan Island.

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