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PALAEOECOLOGY: METHODS AND APPLICATIONS

CODE 106963
ACADEMIC YEAR 2022/2023
CREDITS
  • 4 cfu during the 3nd year of 8763 SCIENZE GEOLOGICHE (L-34) - GENOVA
  • SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR GEO/01
    TEACHING LOCATION
  • GENOVA
  • SEMESTER 1° Semester
    TEACHING MATERIALS AULAWEB

    OVERVIEW

    The activities are aimed at providing practical and theoretical tools to reconstruct the depositional environment based on the paleontological aspects (fossils, ichnofossils) of sedimentary successions. The teaching program follows a paleoecological transect from continental environments to abyssal plains, passing through deserts and coral reefs. For each depositional environment, the characteristic paleoecological properties are discussed, illustrating how to recognize, describe and interpret them.

    AIMS AND CONTENT

    LEARNING OUTCOMES

    The student will acquire the ability to reconstruct the depositional environment based on the paleontological aspects (fossils, icnofossils) of a sedimentary succession.

    AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

    The student will be able to:

    • Define the ecological characteristics of a fossil association and their paleoenvironmental implications;
    • Recognize, classify and interpret the main ichnofossils present in marine, transitional and continental sedimentary successions;
    • Integrate paleontological and sedimentological information;
    • Interpret the depositional environment of a sedimentary succession, based on both outcrop and core data;
    • Compile summary documents such as technical-scientific reports and graphic representations of paleoenvironments.

    PREREQUISITES

    Paleontology (cod. 64866)

    SYLLABUS/CONTENT

    1. PALEOENVIRONMENTAL TOOLS: the paleoecological investigation; taphonomy applied to environmental reconstruction; ichnofacies; ichnofabric; facies analysis; technical-scientific reports;
    2. CONTINENTAL ENVIRONMENTS: paleoecology and paleoenvironments of desert, lake, river, alluvial plain, glacial and volcanoclastic settings;
    3. SHALLOW MARINE ENVIRONMENTS: paleoecology and palaeoenvironments of beach, tidal plain, lagoon, strandplain, chenier plain, rocky coast, shelf, and carbonatic settings;
    4. TRANSITIONAL ENVIRONMENTS: paleoecology and paleoenvironments of estuarine and deltaic settings;
    5. DEEP MARINE ENVIRONMENTS: paleoecology and paleoenvironments of slope and abyssal plain settings;

     

    Fieldwork activity: paleoecological analysis of fossil-bearing sedimentary successions.

    RECOMMENDED READING/BIBLIOGRAPHY

    • Brenchley PJ, Harper D. (1998). Palaeoecology: Ecosystems, Environments and Evolution. CRC Press
    • Buatois, L.A., Mángano, M.G. (2011). Ichnology: Organism-Substrate Interactions in Space and Time. Cambridge University Press
    • Einsele, G. (2013). Sedimentary Basins: Evolution, Facies, and Sediment Budget. Springer Science & Business Media
    • Knaust, D., Bromley R.G. (2012.) Trace Fossils as Indicators of Sedimentary Environments, Elsevier
    • Nichols G. (2009). Sedimentology and Stratigraphy. John Wiley & Sons
    • Reineck H.E., Singh I.B. (1980). Depositional Sedimentary Environments. Springer-Verlag
    • Selley, R.C. (2013). Ancient Sedimentary Environments: And Their Sub-surface Diagnosis. Routledge

    The Power Point / PDF presentations used in class are available (downloadable from the WEB classroom).

    TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD

    LESSONS

    EXAMS

    ASSESSMENT METHODS

    The exam consists of an oral test, divided into a practical test and a series of questions. The practical test consists in the environmental reconstruction of a sedimentary succession on the basis of its paleontological characteristics. The questions concern the theoretical and practical topics discussed during the course. The exam aims to evaluate the knowledge of the theoretical aspects of the subject and the competence in the application of practical-applicative tools.