Abstract

Uplifted late Ouaternary coral reefs on the island of Barbados record folding of the emergent crest of the Lesser Antilles accretionary prism (Barbados Ridge complex) since ca. 1 Ma. Three northeast striking folds are defined by systematic changes in altitudes in the crest of First High Cliff, a mostly constructional reef terrace about 125 ka, and Second High Cliff, a partially erosional reef terrace about 500 ka. The folds have wavelengths of 6 to 8 km and fold axes extend about 10 km. The largest anticline rises to the northeast, where it has been breached by erosion exposing highly deformed Eocene to lower Miocene rocks of the Scotland District. Uplift rates based on heights of the last interglacial First High Cliff range from 0.07 to 0.44 mm/yr. Quaternary folding on Barbados indicates that the crest of the accretionary prism continues to be an active fold belt undergoing northwestsoutheast shortening.

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