Abstract

Astropolithon hindii was first described by Dawson (1878) from the Meguma Group of Nova Scotia and interpreted as a biogenic sedimentary structure. Subsequent workers in ichnology have generally accepted this interpretation and have utilized Astropolithon as a distinctive Cambrian ichnofossil and furthermore have even erected new ichnospecies. It is proposed here that A. hindii is a physical rather than biogenic sedimentary structure, merely representing one variation in a morphologically variable assemblage of sand volcanoes produced as a result of fluidization along discrete flow paths of rapidly deposited turbiditic or fluidized sheet sands. As such, A. hindii should be regarded as a pseudofossil and other biogenic structures assigned to it should necessarily be incorporatred into a new ichnogenus.

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