STRATI 2013 pp 1167-1171 | Cite as

Vertebrate Microfossils as Tools in Stratigraphy: A Study of the Lower Devonian Andrée Land Group, Spitsbergen

  • Živilė Žigaitė
  • Henning Blom
  • Alberto Pérez-Huerta
  • Daniel Goujet
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Geology book series (SPRINGERGEOL)


We have studied vertebrate microremains from the Lower to Middle Devonian of the Andrée Land Group, comprising the Wood Bay and Grey Hoek formations. We have defined two new thelodont assemblages, which represent different depositional phases during the late Early to early Middle Devonian formation of the Andrée Land Group. The definition of these two new thelodont assemblages allows us to precisely establish the relative ages of the Lower–Middle Devonian strata. Rare earth element (REE) abundances were measured in a number of thelodont and chondrichthyan microfossil dental tissue biominerals, using laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA–ICP–MS). The evaluation of fossil preservation level was performed using semiquantitative spot-geochemistry analyses on finely polished thelodont scale thin-sections using Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS), and Electron Backscattering Diffractometry (EBSD) was applied to detect recrystallization. Stable oxygen isotope measurements (δ18O) of bulk biominerals were conducted in parallel, and showed lower heavy oxygen values in the fossil tissues with stronger visible alteration, such as those from the Grey Hoek Formation. Our results suggest that certain lithostratigraphic units of the Andrée Land Group must be regarded as contemporaneous lithofacies subjected to different sedimentary environments, rather than as separate stratigraphic members.


Vertebrates Microfossils Biostratigraphy Chemostratigraphy Devonian Spitsbergen 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Živilė Žigaitė
    • 1
    • 2
  • Henning Blom
    • 1
  • Alberto Pérez-Huerta
    • 3
  • Daniel Goujet
    • 4
  1. 1.Subdepartment of Evolution and Development, Department of Organism Biology, Evolutionary Biology CenterUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.School of Geography, Earth and Environmental SciencesUniversity of BirminghamEdgbastonUK
  3. 3.Department of Geological SciencesUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  4. 4.Muséum National d’Histoire naturelle Département Histoire de la TerreLaboratoire de Paléontologie UMR CNRS 7207ParisFrance

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