Abstract

Carboniferous rocks in the Joggins area, Nova Scotia, and the Maringouin Peninsula, New Brunswick, are world renowned for their well-preserved macroflora, but this paper is the first detailed study of the palynoflora. The section is comprised of the Mississippian Windsor and Mabou groups overlain disconformably by the Lower Pennsylvanian Cumberland Group. The Windsor Group rocks proved to be barren of palynomorphs but the Mabou Group yielded spores and pollen of Brigantian (late Viséan) to Arnsbergian age (early Namurian = early Serpukhovian). The assemblages are assigned successively to the Schopfipollenites acadiensis–Knoxisporites triradiatus, the Grandispora spinosa–Ibrahimispores magnificus, and the Reticulatisporites carnosus Zones. A major palynofloral change takes place between the Mississippian Mabou and the Pennsylvanian Cumberland assemblages. This is believed to reflect a significant regional hiatus in the Joggins section and elsewhere in eastern Canada. The Cumberland Group is characterized by an abundance of Lycospora spp. and monosaccate gymnosperm species of Yeadonian? (Late Namurian = middle Bashkirian?) to late Duckmantian (late Bashkirian?) age. The palynological succession is divided into the Raistrickia saetosa, the Raistrickia fulva, and the Vestispora magna zones. Age determinations of the zones, based on comparisons with Western Europe and the North Sea, are tentative because the Cumberland assemblages lack diversity and many taxa diagnostic in Western Europe are absent in the assemblages of the Joggins area, possibly due to environmental and climatic differences.

Geological Survey of Canada Contribution Number: 20090031

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