Abstract

The thick, richly fossiliferous succession of the upper Windermere Supergroup, Mackenzie Mountains, northwestern Canada, provides a test of integrated biostratigraphic and chemostratigraphic frameworks in terminal Proterozoic correlation. The C- and Sr-isotopic abundances of lower Keele Formation carbonates approximate those for other pre-Varanger samples, confirming that the simple disc-like fossils of the underlying Twitya Formation predate all known diverse Ediacaran faunas. "Tepee" and Sheepbed carbonates record strong post-glacial isotopic excursions; in contrast, δ13C values for Gametrail through Risky carbonates vary only within the narrow range of about +1‰ to +2‰. A second negative excursion occurs in Ingta Formation carbonates that immediately underlie the paleontologically determined Precambrian-Cambrian boundary. The upper Windermere profile as a whole compares closely with curves determined for other terminal Proterozoic successions. The lowermost diverse Ediacaran assemblages in the Sheepbed Formation correlate chemostratigraphically with the oldest fauna in Namibia, but the two assemblages differ in taxonomic composition. Blueflower assemblages correlate both chemostratigraphically and taxonomically with faunas from Australia, China, Siberia, and elsewhere. Increasing data support the hypothesis that paleontological and geochemical data together provide a reliable means of correlating terminal Proterozoic sedimentary rocks throughout the world.

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