, Volume 31, Issue 3, p 763,
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Date: 09 May 2012

Raised reef on Larak suggests Acropora dominance on the ‎Persian Gulf coral reefs since the Pleistocene

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We show hitherto undescribed raised coral frameworks exposed at the NE coast of Larak (Iran), a salt diapir island, located in the Strait of Hormuz, Persian Gulf (Fig. 1a). The entire outcropping section is ~7 m thick. At least two fossil reef sequences were recognized, separated by clastic sediment layers: one near mean sea level (MSL) and the other one >4 m above MSL, the upper 2.5 m of which consist mostly of Acropora plates of the clathrata/downingi group (Fig. 1 b–d). Preliminary U/Th, 14C dates are problematic but suggest an upper Pleistocene age ranging from 30 to 150 ka. This is comparable to similar outcrops at nearby Hormoz and Qeshm (Bruthans et al. 2006). Outcrops suggest several consecutive layers of Acropora dominance, comparable to the situation in the modern Gulf until recently, but not yet reported from other known raised deposits in the region (Pirazzoli et al. 2004; Bruthans et al. 2006).Fig. 1

a Overview of the outcrop. bc Details of Acropora tables in growth positi