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Ordovician "sphinctozoan" sponges from Prince of Wales Island, southeastern Alaska

January 1, 2005

A faunule of silicified hypercalcified "sphinctozoan" sponges has been recovered from a clast of Upper Ordovician limestone out of the Early Devonian Karheen Formation on Prince of Wales Island in southeastern Alaska. Included in the faunule are abundant examples of the new genus Girtyocoeliana, represented by Girtyocoeliana epiporata (Rigby and Potter), and Corymbospongia adnata Rigby and Potter, along with rare Corymbospongia amplia n. sp., and Girtyocoelia(?) sp., plus common Amblysiphonella sp. 1 and rare Amblysiphonella(?) sp. 2. The assemblage is similar to that from Ordovician clasts from the eastern Klamath Mountains of northern California. This indicates that the Alexander terrane of southeastern Alaska is related paleogeographically to the lithologically and paleontologically similar terrane of the eastern Klamath Mountains. This lithology and fossil assemblage of the clast cannot be tied to any currently known local rock units on Prince of Wales Island. Other clasts in the conglomerate appear to have been locally derived, so it is inferred that the limestone clasts were also locally derived, indicating the presence of a previously undocumented Ordovician limestone unit on northern Prince of Wales Island. 

Publication Year 2005
Title Ordovician "sphinctozoan" sponges from Prince of Wales Island, southeastern Alaska
DOI 10.1666/0022-3360(2005)079[0862:OSSFPO]2.0.CO;2
Authors J.K. Rigby, Susan M. Karl, R. B. Blodgett, J.F. Baichtal
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Paleontology
Index ID 70027852
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Alaska Science Center