Mineralium Deposita

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 301–312 | Cite as

Petrology, U/Pb dating and (C-O) stable isotope constraints on the source and evolution of the adakite-related Mezcala Fe-Au skarn district, Guerrero, Mexico

  • Gilles LevresseEmail author
  • Eduardo González-Partida
  • Alejandro Carrillo-Chavez
  • Jordi Tritlla
  • Antoni Camprubí
  • Alain Cheilletz
  • Dominique Gasquet
  • Etienne Deloule


The Mezcala gold district, Guerrero, Mexico, is a Cretaceous to early Paleocene oxidized Fe-Au skarn deposit, genetically associated with an adakitic magmatic event of 63±2 Ma, dated by ion-probe U/Pb on zircons.

The inner and outer alteration patterns and the mineralogical sequence (high garnet/pyroxene ratio, high ferric/ferrous ratio >1, predominance of Fe-poor garnet and pyroxene, low total sulfides) found in Mezcala are compatible with the description of an oxidized gold skarn type. Carbon and oxygen isotope analyses of the inner calcite zone (−9.98 to −11.64 and +13.21 to +14.59‰, respectively) unequivocally support a magmatic signature of the hydrothermal fluid. Carbon and oxygen isotopes from the outer calcite zone (−8.81 to +3.45 and +12.95 to +22.77‰, respectively) suggest a complex mechanism of degassing and subsequent cooling/dilution of the resulting magmatic brine with the meteoric water. Gold appears to be closely associated with the adakite stock, whereas its transport is related with the outflow of highly oxidized magmatic brines from the intrusion. The gold precipitation is triggered by cooling/dilution of the degassed magmatic brine by the meteoric fluids.


Fe-Au skarn C-O stable isotope U/Pb dating Paleocene Mexico 



The Peñoles Mining Corporation is thanked for logistical field assistance and for the permission to publish the results. This study was funded in part by scientific grants UNAM-PAPIIT (# IN100900), CONACYT (# G35442-T) to E. González-Partida and CRPG-UPR2300A to A. Cheilletz and D. Gasquet. Dave Lentz and Laurence Meinert are thanked for their constructive observations and careful English changes that significantly improved the manuscript. Zircon ion-probe analysis were carried out under the supervision of E. Deloule, M. Champenois and D. Mangin.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gilles Levresse
    • 1
    Email author
  • Eduardo González-Partida
    • 1
  • Alejandro Carrillo-Chavez
    • 1
  • Jordi Tritlla
    • 1
  • Antoni Camprubí
    • 1
  • Alain Cheilletz
    • 2
  • Dominique Gasquet
    • 2
  • Etienne Deloule
    • 2
  1. 1.Programa de GeofluidosCentro de Geociencias UNAM-Campus JuriquillaQuerétaro México
  2. 2.Centre de Recherches Pétrographiques et GéochimiquesCRPG-CNRS and Ecole Nationale Supérieure de GéologieVandoeuvre-les-NancyFrance

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