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Biomat-related lifestyles in the Precambrian

Adolf Seilacher
Biomat-related lifestyles in the Precambrian (in Unexplored microbial worlds, James W. Hagadorn (editor), Friedrich Pflueger (editor) and David J. Bottjer (editor))
Palaios (February 1999) 14 (1): 86-93


The strange biota of Neoproterozoic sea bottoms become more understandable if we assume that otherwise soft sediments were sealed by firm and erosion-resistant biomats. This allowed "mat encrusters" (vendobionts; trilobozoan and other sponges) to get attached to sandy bottoms, and molluscan "mat scratchers" to scrape off an algal film, as if they were living on rocks. Minute conical "mat stickers" (Cloudina) probably required a sticky substrate to become stabilized in upright position. Horizontal burrows are interpreted as the works of worm-like "undermat miners." Only the latter lifestyle appears to go back to the Mesoproterozoic; the others emerged in Vendian times and virtually disappeared when matgrounds became restricted to hostile environments in the wake of the Cambrian ecological revolution.

ISSN: 0883-1351
Serial Title: Palaios
Serial Volume: 14
Serial Issue: 1
Title: Biomat-related lifestyles in the Precambrian
Title: Unexplored microbial worlds
Author(s): Seilacher, Adolf
Author(s): Hagadorn, James W.editor
Author(s): Pflueger, Friedricheditor
Author(s): Bottjer, David J.editor
Affiliation: Tuebingen University, Geologisches Institut, Tuebingen, Federal Republic of Germany
Affiliation: California Institute of Technology, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, Pasadena, CA, United States
Pages: 86-93
Published: 199902
Text Language: English
Publisher: Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists, Tulsa, OK, United States
References: 29
Accession Number: 1999-057331
Categories: General paleontologySedimentary petrology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. block diags.
Secondary Affiliation: Yale University, USA, United StatesUniversity of Southern California, USA, United StatesYale University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 199919
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