Abstract

Stratigraphic sections in south-central Alabama were studied to test palynological evidence of sea-level change across the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. New evidence from both calcareous nannofossils and dinoflagellate cysts places the regional disconformity in Alabama (Type 1 sequence boundary) virtually at the K-T boundary. This suggests that sea-level fall may have contributed to the mass-extinction event. Dinofagellate diversity varies between systems tract components of coastal onlap. This parameter is useful for interpreting sea-level change in this part of the section, because dinoflagellates did not participate in the mass extinction. The iridium spikes in the roadcut near Braggs are of earliest Danian age and correlate in relative magnitude with the lower values reported from directly above the K-T boundary in the Gubbio stratotype section. Iridium was concentrated in marine flooding surfaces in episodes of higher productivity of algal organic matter at the time when the iridium-enriched ocean encroached on the shelf during the first Cenozoic episode of sea-level rise.

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