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Latest Quaternary foraminifers and sediment transport in Pervenets Canyon, Bering Sea

December 1, 1995

A combination of microfossil and sediment analysis has been used in an attempt to understand oceanographic processes and the late Quaternary history of the Pervenets Canyon region. The primary sedimentation process in Pervenets Canyon is downslope transport. Near the shelfbreak, there is evidence of turbidite and debris-flow activity, but at the distal end of the upper canyon and on the continental slope there is no macroscopic evidence for these processes.

Analysis of the foraminiferal assemblages shows that the fauna is 97.6% from the Suborder Rotaliina and about 2.0% from the Suborder Textulariina. The Suborder Miliolina accounts for approximately 0.4% of the fauna. The Pervenets Canyon fauna is most similar to other faunas from the Bering Sea, indicating a North Pacific Ocean influence on the fauna.

Foraminiferal abundance and species diversity vary widely in the samples studied. The major factors controlling these values are downslope transport of sediment, disintegration of arenaceous taxa, dissolution of calcareous taxa, and diversity limited by low-oxygen bottom waters. Downslope transport of shelf species is indicated by the presence of Elphidium clavatum and E. excavatum. Shallow-shelf and low-oxygen foraminiferal faunas are often intermixed in the samples. The distribution of these low-oxygen faunas in Core 81-65 suggests that the oxygen-minimum zone fluctuated with sea level.

Publication Year 1995
Title Latest Quaternary foraminifers and sediment transport in Pervenets Canyon, Bering Sea
DOI 10.1016/0377-8398(95)00041-0
Authors Scott W. Starratt
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Marine Micropaleontology
Index ID 70246542
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center