Carbonate mounds of the Moroccan Mediterranean margin: Facies and environmental controls

Type Article
Date 2018-07
Language English
Author(s) Terhzaz Loubna1, Hamoumi Naima1, Spezzaferri Silvia2, Lotfi El Mostapha3, Henriet Jean-Pierre4
Affiliation(s) 1 : Mohammed V Univ Rabat, Fac Sci Rabat, Mat Sci Res Ctr, Grp Res ODYSSEE,Mat Nanotechnol & Environm Lab LM, BP 1014, Rabat, Morocco.
2 : Univ Fribourg, Dept Geosci, CH-1700 Fribourg, Switzerland.
3 : Mohammed V Univ Rabat, ENSET, BP 6207, Rabat, Morocco.
4 : Univ Ghent, Dept Geol & Soil Sci, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium.
Source Comptes Rendus Geoscience (1631-0713) (Elsevier France-editions Scientifiques Medicales Elsevier), 2018-07 , Vol. 350 , N. 5 , P. 212-221
DOI 10.1016/j.crte.2018.04.003
WOS© Times Cited 2
Keyword(s) Carbonate mounds, Cold water corals, Sedimentology, Sedimentary geochemistry, Moroccan Mediterranean margin

Sedimentological and geochemical studies of boxcores from the Brittlestar Ridge I and Cabliers carbonate mounds, along the Moroccan Mediterranean margin, show that sediments are composed of cold water scleratian corals and micritic mud, muddy micrite or muddy allochem limestone matrix, outlining seven different facies that can be attributed to “cluster reefs”. The mixed siliciclastic/carbonate sediments have been derived from both extra- and intrabasinal sources. Extra-basinal sources may be the geological formations outcropping in the Moroccan hinterland and Sahara, the latter including corals and associated bioclasts. Sediments were transported by wind and rivers and redistributed by bottom currents and local upwelling. Our results confirm the role of tectonics in the genesis of these carbonate mounds and reveal that their developments during the Holocene (10.34–0.91 ka BP) was controlled by climatic fluctuations (e.g. Holocene Climate Optimum and Little Ice Age), eustatic sea level change, and hydrodynamic regime.

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