Firmground ichnofacies recording high-frequency marine flooding events (Langhian transgression, Vallés-Penedés Basin, Spain)


  • Jordi M. de Gibert Atienza Universitat de Barcelona.



Ichnology, Spongeliomorpha, Miocene, Sequence stratigraphy


The decapod burrow Spongeliomorpha sudolica occurs associated with transgressive firmgrounds in the transition between Aragonian continental red beds and Langhian marine units in some of the inner sectors of the Vallès-Penedès Basin. This ichnospecies designates branching burrow systems with scratch marks in the walls produced by marine crustacean decapods. The occurrence of Spongeliomorpha represents an example of the Glossifungites ichnofacies. The several horizons where the traces are found are intercalated with continental red beds a few meters below the main transgressive surface, which is overlain by fossiliferous marine sandstones. The Spongeliomorpha-bioturbated layers record short, high frequency marine flooding surfaces that may be related either to actual sea-level changes or to variations in tectonic subsidence or sediment input. In any case, these flooding events punctuated the early phases of the Langhian transgression in the basin.

Author Biography

Jordi M. de Gibert Atienza, Universitat de Barcelona.

Departament d’Estratigrafia, Paleontologia i Geociències Marines.


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