The Badenian/Sarmatian (Middle Miocene) boundary in the Central Paratethys (Kreminna, western Ukraine): Foraminiferal and palynological evidence

Danuta Peryt, Przemysław Gedl, Marek Jasionowski, Tadeusz Marek Peryt, Andriy V. Poberezhskyy


The Badenian/Sarmatian boundary in the Paratethys basin, that marks the transition from normal marine to restricted semi-marine conditions due to isolation of the basin from the world ocean at the onset of Sarmatian time, is still far from being fully understood. The Kreminna section is located at the northeastern margin of the Carpathian Foreland Basin (Central Paratethys) in the Medobory Hills region. The Miocene deposits that overlie here the Upper Cretaceous substratum comprise the >1 m thick upper Badenian marls and clays passing upwards into ~4 m thick Sarmatian marly limestones with intercalations of marls, clays and limestones, and >2 m thick limestones in the uppermost part of the exposure. Fifty-three species of benthic foraminifera and four species of planktonic foraminifera have been recorded. Six benthic foraminiferal assemblages are composed almost exclusively of calcareous forms; agglutinated taxa are practically lacking. Elphidium spp., miliolids, Lobatula lobatula and Ammonia spp. are the most common calcareous benthic foraminifera in the material studied. Planktonic foraminifera are represented only by species of Globigerina and occur rarely in the lowermost part of the section. A characteristic feature of palynofacies is the very low proportion of land-derived elements – sporomorphs and cuticles, which suggests a sedimentary setting without terrestrial influx, and taxonomical impoverishment of dinoflagellate cyst assemblages, which are either monospecific or consist mainly of two to three species: in a majority of samples, assemblages with Polysphaeridium zoharyi and P. subtile occur. Most δ18O values range from –1.5 to ~+0.5‰ VPDB and most δ13C values are between 0 and +2‰ VPDB. In general, the δ13C curve mirrors the δ18O changes in the section. The Badenian/Sarmatian boundary is placed at the level where the Cibicidoides ungerianus Assemblage is replaced by the Elphidium fichtelianum Assemblage. At the boundary, planktonic foraminifers and most abundant stenohaline benthic foraminifera disappeared. Bottom waters were well-oxygenated both in the latest Badenian and earliest Sarmatian in the Kreminna location.


Middle Miocene, Carpathian Foredeep Basin, foraminifers, palynofacies, palaeoenvironments

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