Origins of life

, Volume 14, Issue 1–4, pp 671–679 | Cite as

The stratified microbial community at Laguna Figueroa, Baja California, Mexico: A possible model for prephanerozoic laminated microbial communities preserved in cherts

  • John F. Stolz
  • Lynn Margulis


The microbial mat community of the evaporite flat at North Pond, Laguna Figueroa (Baja California, Mexico) was actively involved in the production of laminated sediments prior to 1978. Heavy rains in 1979 and 1980 flooded the mat with 1 and 3 meters of meteoric water respectively. The flooding deposited up to 10 cm of silicoclastic sediment over theMicrocoleus-dominated mat and resulted in the cessation of laminated sediment deposition. In 1982, the surface had been recolonized by species of cyanobacteria (Spirulina, Oscillatoria) and purple photosynthetic bacteria (Chromatium, Thiocapsa). The silicoclastic sediments and residual evaporites, which overlaid the laminated sediment, had been reworked into an anaerobic, sulfide-rich mud and contained well preserved sheaths of filamentous and coccoid bacteria.


Organic Chemistry Geochemistry Microbial Community Chert Evaporite 
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Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • John F. Stolz
    • 1
  • Lynn Margulis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyBoston UniversityBostonUSA

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