Carbonates and Evaporites

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 2–10 | Cite as

Diagenetic history of a submerged Pleistocene Jamaican fringing reef

  • M. L. McCullough
  • L. S. Land


In the Discovery Bay area of northern Jamaica, a fringing reef grew and was subsequently planed off as sea level rose to and fell from a highstand between about 132,000 and 147,000 y B.P. Depositional facies encountered in cores consist of back reef, reef flat, reef crest, and shallow fore-reef zones, and many appear to have a storm-modified fabric analogous to the modern fringing reef. Eustatic changes in sea level resulted in 3 periods of marine submergence, and two periods of emergence in a meteoric vadose regime.

Diagenetic fabrics in times of marine submergence include micritization, sedimentation and lithification of extensive mud drapes, and precipitation of high-magnesian calcite, aragonite, and dolomite cements. Mixing zone fabrics include dissolution of aragonite and magnesian calcites. Dissolution of aragonite and subsequent precipitation of whisker calcite (“lublinite”) and other thin-bladed crystals of calcite occurred in the meteoric vadose environment. Thick-bladed to equant low-magnesian calcite filled pores saturated with meteoric water. In contrast to the subaerially exposed 125 Ka Falmouth Formation, no extensive caliche-like “caprock” is associated with the surface of submarine exposure, which is undergoing extensive biological erosion today, or is directly overlain by Holocene deposits.

Marine diagenetic fabrics dominate the rocks today, and a poor and incomplete record of eustatic changes is preserved.


Dolomite Aragonite Micrite Dolomitization Peloids 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. L. McCullough
    • 1
  • L. S. Land
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geological SciencesUniversity of TexasAustin

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