The K-Pg boundary section at Nasiłów, Poland: stratigraphic reassessment based on foraminifers, dinoflagellate cysts and palaeomagnetism

Zbyszek Remin, Michał Cyglicki, Marcin Barski, Zofia Dubicka, Joanna Roszkowska-Remin


The Nasiłów section represents the uppermost part of the Middle Vistula River section, a classical Polish extra-Carpathian Cretaceous section, and gives access to the Cretaceous–Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary interval. Despite many papers that have been published so far, our newly collected data shed new light on the completeness of biostratigraphic and sedimentary records of the K-Pg at that site. The Nasiłów section encompasses the upper Maastrichtian regional XII and XIII foraminiferal assemblage zones and the lower Danian P0?-Pα standard planktonic foraminiferal zones. The K-Pg boundary is placed at the top of a phosphatic layer. The grey marly chalk unit, never before subjected to examination of biostratigraphically important taxa, displays blooms of guembelitrids pointing to the uppermost Maastrichtian (XIII foraminiferal assemblage Zone) as well as of planktonic and benthic foraminifers of a reduced test size. Such foraminiferal dwarfism is commonly observed near the end of the Cretaceous and interpreted as a response to the Deccan volcanism (possible 2nd phase) that caused climate changes and ocean acidification. The terminal Maastrichtian age of the marly chalk unit is additionally supported by an acme of the dinoflagellate cyst Palinodinium grallator, together with Tallasiphora pelagica and Disphaerogena carposphaeropsis. The “Greensand”, a distinct glauconite-quartz sand unit, contains exclusively terminal Maastrichtian planktonic foraminifers and dinoflagellate cyst assemblages. Individual specimens of Danian age are interpreted to be either an effect of contamination or were translocated down by burrowers into the Greensand. The lowermost portion of the Siwak (informal lithostratigraphic unit) demonstrates an early Danian age based on the co-occurrence of the common planktonic foraminifers Globoconusa daubjergensis, Guembelitria cretacea, Muricohedbergella monmouthensis, M. planispira, Planoheterohelix globulosa, Parvularuglobigerina extensa and P. alabamensis. The last occurrence of Palynodinium grallator and the first occurrences of Carptella cornuta and Senoniasphaera inornata, recorded directly above the phosphatic layer, support the same age assignment. The new palaeomagnetic data cannot prove remagnetization at the boundary interval, in contrast to previous research which gave support to a hiatus in the critical interval


K-Pg boundary; biostratigraphy; foraminifera; dinoflagellate cysts; palaeomagnetism; Nasiłów

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