El Alisal: a new locality with trace fossils of the Puncoviscana Formation (late Precambrian-early Cambrian) in Salta Province. Argentina

Guillermo F. Aceñolaza, M.F. Tortello


The Puncoviscana, Suncho and Las Aguaditas/Negro Peinado formations represent a thick siliciclastic folded succession that crops out on a strip about 800 km long and 150 km wide in northwestern Argentina (Jujuy, Salta, Tucumán, Catamarca and La Rioja provinces). These sequences are lithologically characterized by very lowgrade metamorphic sediments grading from slates to schists; turbidites, pelagic clays, limestones and volcanic rocks. On the basis of paleoichnological data, these units have been assigned to the late Precambrian-early Cambrian. A new locality bearing well preserved trace fossils from the Puncoviscana Formation is described herein. The outcrop is located about 45 km west of Salta city (Salta Province), displaying an alternation of colored differentiated grayish-bluish slates and fine sandstones. Ichnofossils include Cochlichnus anguineus HITCHCOCK, Helminthoidichnites tenuis FITCH, Helminthoida isp., Monomorphichnus lineatus CRIMES, LEGG and MARCOS ARBOLEYA, Planolites isp. and Torrowangea? isp., as well as some limb marks and a few slightly bended smooth trails (indet.). An Early Cambrian age for the succession at El Alisal as well as some environmental considerations are allowed by the ichnological association. In addition, the ichnogenus Planolites is mentioned for the first time from the “red shales and conglomerate type” facies at the neighbor locality of Chorrillos.


Trace fossils; Precambrian-Cambrian Puncoviscana Formation; Northwestern Argentina.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1344/105.000001595


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            Facultat de Ciències de la Terra                       Geociències Barcelona                           Institut de Diagnosi Ambiental                    Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona           
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