Paleozoic stratigraphy of the Central and Northern part of the Catalonian Coastel Ranges (NE Spain)



The Paleozoic stratigraphic succession in the Catalonian Coastal Ranges spans the interval from Cambrian(?) to Carboniferous, with only one break, separating the pre-Carboniferous part of the sequence from the Carboniferous. The oldest rocks exposed form a sequence of schists, fine grained sandstones, gneisses (laminar pre-Hercynian intrusions), marbles, orto- and para-amphibolites and calcsilicate rocks. comparison with other localities iuggests an Early Cambrian age (or perhaps in part older). Upwards the sequence becomes more monotonous andconsists only of schists (or slates where themetamorphic grade is lower) and thin fine-grained sandstone layers (Cambrian- Ordovician). Still higher in the sequence, an altemation of greywackes and slates is found, with interlayered mud-supported conglomerates at its lower part and acid volcanic rocks which occur throughout the whole sequence. This part of the sequence has provided the oldest faunas known in the Catalonian Coastal Ranges, which indicate the Caradoc. Finally, in its uppermost part, the Ordovician sequence contains some thin limestone layers that contain Ashgill faunas. The Silurian, from Llandovery to Lower Ludlow, consists of black graptolitic shales with dolerite sills, whilst the upper Ludlow, Pridolian and Devonian consist of nodular limestones and marls withpelagic and hemipelagic faunas. The youngest Devonian faunas found correspond in general to the Emsian. The existence of a gap at this point of the sequence suggests the possibility that part of the Devonian could have been eroded. The Carboniferous is characterized by a thick culm sequence (Visean to Westphalian?), resting on thin chert and limestone layers (Tournaisian and Visean). A comparison
with neighbouring areas shows a similarity regarding succession and facies with other Paleozoic massifs around the Western Mediterranean.

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