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Critelli et al. 2018

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Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
Contents lists available at ScienceDirect
Earth-Science Reviews
journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/earscirev
Provenance of Mesozoic to Cenozoic circum-Mediterranean sandstones in
relation to tectonic setting
Salvatore Critelli
T
⁎
Dipartimento di Biologia, Ecologia e Scienze della Terra, Università della Calabria, 87036 Arcavacata di Rende (CS), Italy
A R T I C LE I N FO
A B S T R A C T
Keywords:
Circum-Mediterranean Orogens
Sandstone detrital modes
Provenance analysis
Paleogeography
Paleotectonic evolution
The composition and stratigraphic relations of clastic strata in diverse sedimentary basins of the circumMediterranean region reflect a complete record of provenance relations since break-up of Pangea, neo-Tethyan
taphrogenesis, and subsequent plate convergence between the two major plates of Europe and Africa, and other
related microplates of Iberia, Adria, Mesomediterranean, and toward to the eastern Mediterranean, the
Anatolian microplate.
Since plate reorganization after the breakup of Pangea, at the end of Paleozoic-earliest Mesozoic, clastic
wedges filled sedimentary basins within geodynamic settings evolving from intracontinental rifts, rifted-continental margins, protoceanic basins, arc-trench basin-systems, remnant ocean basins, foreland basin systems
and intramontane and back-arc basins within the circum-Mediterranean region.
The changing nature of clastic particles in these clastic wedges reflect the provenance relations from different
source rocks within the spatial and temporal evolving geo-puzzle terranes, including relations between ophiolitebearing, uplifted continental crust (both shallow to deep crust terranes), volcanic and sedimentary (particularly
carbonate strata) source rocks.
Mixed siliciclastic and carbonate shallow- to deep-marine clastic wedges are diffuse in many filled basin
systems along the Mediterranean, as such as occurrence of volcaniclastic layers interbedded with siliciclastic
wedges.
The variable mosaic of source terranes within the Mediterranean region, offered the possibility to investigate
provenance relations with a new plane of precision and sophistication, discriminating grain particles in clastic
wedges using spatial (extrabasinal versus intrabasinal) and temporal (coeval versus noncoeval) distinction of
detrital signals. The spatial/temporal approach in deciphering particles in clastic rocks has been widely used to
detail the basinal dispersal pathways in different geotectonic settings, wherever mixed silicate and carbonate
terranes act as the major source rocks, from rifted-continental margins to collisional orogens.
1. Introduction
The circum-Mediterranean belt is largely debated in terms of geodynamic evolution, timing of deformations, and plate circuit reconstructions, that is mainly related to the multiple phases of closure of
branches of the Tethys Ocean basin (e.g. Guerrera et al., 1993; Perrone
et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008; Guerrera et al., 2005; Hosseinpour
et al., 2016, and bibliography therein). The circum-Mediterranean belt
evolved throughout the Mesozoic and into the Cenozoic within the area
bounded by Mediterranean margins of Eurasia and Africa. The region
(Fig. 1) is mainly dominated by the evolution of the Tethys Ocean
system, occupying the region between Eurasia and Africa, characterized
by multiple phases of rifting, seafloor spreading, subduction, and
⁎
collision. Only small fragments of oceanic crust formed within the Tethys Ocean are believed to be preserved in situ (Speranza et al., 2012),
while remnants of its closure can be found in the Pyrenees, Alpine, and
Carpathians orogenic belts in the north, the Anatolian plate in the east,
and the northwestern coast of Arabia and Atlas Mountains in the south
(e.g. Hosseinpour et al., 2016, and bibliography therein).
The most characteristic expressions of circum-Mediterranean tectonism are foreland basin systems that mark orogenic belts that stand
parallel with them. These orogenic systems are mainly related to the
multiple phases of closure of branches of the Tethys Ocean basin, defining (i) north-vergent orogenic systems, as the Alps and Betic
Cordillera, related to closure of the western branch of the Tethys Ocean
(Ligurian-Piedmont-Nevadofilabride oceanic realm), and (ii) southern
Corresponding author.
E-mail address: [email protected]
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2018.07.001
Received 29 March 2018; Received in revised form 5 July 2018; Accepted 5 July 2018
Available online 18 July 2018
0012-8252/ © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
S. Critelli
Fig. 1. Location of tectonic features in the Western Tethys and surrounding areas showing the position of the Mesomediterranean Microplate and related other plates.
Modified from Perri et al. (2017).
integrated with fresh data. Table 1 lists the mean detrital modes of all
available data subdivided for the key tectonic history of the circumMediterranean belt in terms of types of sedimentary basins, the subdivision of the Tethyan oceanic realms (western vs. eastern and
southern realms), geographic location of circum-Mediterranean thrust
belts, and for some typical provenance terranes (i.e., cratonic provenance, magmatic-arc provenance). Data base consists of 63 sandstone
suites made up of about 2235 individual samples for which point counts
are reported in 56 different references.
The modal sandstone composition is determined by point-counting
using the Gazzi-Dickinson method (Ingersoll et al., 1984; Zuffa, 1985,
1987). The framework grain types that are used for discussions of
detrital modes are those of Dickinson (1970, 1985), Zuffa (1985, 1987),
Critelli and Le Pera (1994), and Critelli and Ingersoll (1995) and
comprise:
and northeastern-vergence orogenic systems, as northern Africa orogen
(Rif and Tell belts) and Apennines, related to closure of the eastern/
southern branch of the Tethys Ocean (Maghrebide Flysch Basin,
Lucanian and Ionian oceanic realm) (Fig. 1).
Ancient sedimentary basins preserved within the circumMediterranean belt, are thick sedimentary sequences that record the
tectonic evolution of the region since breakup of Pangea, from Tethyan
Rifting, to consume Tethyan oceanic plate and related accretionary
orogenic system. Mesozoic to Tertiary sedimentary strata are clastic,
pelagic and carbonate dominantly. Clastic strata are well preserved in
all the tectonic evolution of the circum-Mediterranean belt from supercontinent breakup to continental accretionary processes.
This paper discusses detrital modes of sandstones in ancient sedimentary basins that are exposed in the circum-Mediterranean belt,
discussing and combining previously published data with new fresh
data. The sandstone compositions are fully compatible with derivation
from sources within the circum-Mediterranean orogenic belt, defining
intriguing provenance relations from recycled orogenic provenance,
uplifted continental block provenance, cratonic provenance, and interbedded minor contribution from active magmatic arcs. These tectonic provenance terranes defines distinctive sandstone suites or mixed
petrofacies. Provenance interpretations are essential to reconstruction
and testing of paleogeographic and paleotectonic models. The general
significance here is that the complex tectonic history of the circumMediterranean orogen can benefit from the application of petrographic
provenance analysis as a test of alternative tectonic scenarios, that can
be useful for analysis of sediment dispersal systems on a global scale of
other major orogens.
a) Quartz grains, including monocrystalline quartz grains (Qm), and
polycrystalline quartzose lithic fragments (Qp), and total quartzose
grains (Qt = Qm + Qp);
b) Feldspar grains (F), including both plagioclase (P) and potassium
feldspar (K);
c) Aphanitic lithic fragments (L), as the sum of volcanic and metavolcanic (Lv and Lvm), sedimentary (Ls) and metasedimentary (Lm;
including Lsm as the sum of Ls + Lm). Ls includes here also carbonate lithic fragments (extrabasinal carbonate grains of Zuffa,
1980, 1985; Critelli et al., 1990a, 2007), because of their importance and occurrence in detrital modes of Apenninic sandstones;
d) phaneritic + aphanitic rock/lithic fragments (R), recalculated by
point-counting of specific assignment of aphanitic Lm, Lv and Ls
lithic fragments plus quartz, feldspar, micas and dense minerals in
polimineralic fragments in which these minerals individually are
larger than the lower limit of the sand range (0.0625 mm), that
during counting are summed as quartz (Qm) and feldspar (F) or
micas or dense mineral grains (e.g., Ingersoll et al., 1984; Zuffa,
1985, 1987; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994; Critelli and Ingersoll, 1995).
2. Data presentation and petrological parameters
Most circum-Mediterranean sandstones that have been used in detail are of early-middle Mesozoic (upper Triassic-earliest Jurassic) to
Cenozoic age.
Sandstone compositions are reported here as mean detrital modes of
selected suites in the format adopted to decipher and subdivide the
suites for their tectonic provenances and types of sedimentary basins.
Data set includes a review of both revised of previously published data
For diagrams, the proportions of quartzose grains, feldspar grains
and aphanitic lithic fragments are recalculated to 100%, and summary
625
65
20
27
40
84( ± 8)-6( ± 5)-10 ( ± 9)
89 ( ± 4)-9 ( ± 4)-2 ( ± 1)
94 ( ± 7)-2 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 2)
91 ( ± 4)-4 ( ± 1)-5 ( ± 3)
79( ± 7)-1( ± 1)-20 ( ± 7)
70( ± 7)-1( ± 1)-29 ( ± 7)
77( ± 8)-6( ± 5)-16 ( ± 9)
79 ( ± 9)-5 ( ± 5)-16 ( ± 11)
( ± 6)-0
( ± 6)-0
( ± 6)-4
( ± 6)-4
( ± 1)-1
( ± 1)-1
( ± 4)-4
( ± 5)-2
( ± 6)
( ± 6)
( ± 3)
( ± 3)
626
F. Betic Cordillera: foreland sequences
Syn-orogenic foreland Betic Cordillera, Spain (Río Pliego and El Niño de Mula
formations)
8
4
19
18
6
19
23
16
12
32
18
( ± 2)-1 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 3)
( ± 4)-3 ( ± 2)-10 ( ± 4)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-3 ( ± 3)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-3 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-8 ( ± 4)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 5)-5 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 5)-11 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-3 ( ± 3)
( ± 3)-2 ( ± 2)-4 ( ± 2)
( ± 4)-0 ( ± 0)-8 ( ± 4)
44 ( ± 20)-1 ( ± 1)-55 ( ± 20)
95
87
97
97
92
95
89
97
94
92
( ± 2)-1 ( ± 1)-5 ( ± 3)
( ± 4)-3 ( ± 2)-12 ( ± 4)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-4 ( ± 3)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-4 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-8 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 5)-5 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 5)-11 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 3)-0 ( ± 0)-4 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-2 ( ± 4)-6 ( ± 0)
( ± 4)-0 ( ± 0)-10 ( ± 4)
46 ( ± 20)-1 ( ± 1)-53 ( ± 20)
94
85
96
96
92
95
89
96
92
90
( ± 1)-0
( ± 4)-3
( ± 1)-0
( ± 1)-0
( ± 5)-6
( ± 5)-0
( ± 5)-7
( ± 1)-0
( ± 4)-3
( ± 5)-8
( ± 6)-5
( ± 3)-6
( ± 5)-3
( ± 6)-2
( ± 6)-2
( ± 0)-1
( ± 3)-2
( ± 0)-1
( ± 0)-1
( ± 3)-4
( ± 0)-3
( ± 3)-4
( ± 0)-1
( ± 3)-2
( ± 1)
( ± 3)
( ± 1)
( ± 1)
( ± 3)
( ± 1)
( ± 3)
( ± 1)
( ± 3)
( ± 3)-16 ( ± 4)
( ± 3)-21 ( ± 5)
( ± 2)-16 ( ± 2)
( ± 2)-27 ( ± 5)
( ± 15)-70 ( ± 13)
( ± 2)-18 ( ± 4)
(continued on next page)
99 ( ± 1)-0 ( ± 0)-1 ( ± 1)
71
74
73
70
28
80
–
–
–
–
75 ( ± 5)-4 ( ± 3)-21 ( ± 2)
82 ( ± 8)-3 ( ± 2)-15 ( ± 7)
–
94 ( ± 4)-4 ( ± 3)-2 ( ± 2)
91 ( ± 3)-1 ( ± 1)-8 ( ± 3)
–
–
99
99
92
94
99
95
99
99
90
97
89
99
95
–
( ± 5)- 7( ± 6)
( ± 4)-1 ( ± 1)
( ± 1)-0 ( ± 0)
( ± 1)-3 ( ± 3)
( ± 1)- 11( ± 6)
( ± 1)- 11( ± 6)
( ± 5)- 8( ± 6)
( ± 5)-5 ( ± 4)
QmKP
D. Craton-derived Sequences (suites from Rif and Tell represent the filling of its foreland basin system)
D1
Pre-Orogenic (Espuña and As Formations), Betics, Spain
D2
Asilah Sandstone (Rif, Morocco)
D3
Zoumi-Sidi Mrait, Ouezzane Units (Rif, Morocco)
D4
Fortuna Formation
D5
Numidian Sandstone (Sicily)
D6
Numidian Sandstone (southern Apennines)
D7
Numidian Sandstone (southern Apennines)
D8
Bifurto Formation (Apennine Platform Unit)
D9
Numidian Sandstone (northern Africa: Rif, Tell)
D10
Tanger Unit (Burdigalian-Serravallian)
( ± 7)-6
( ± 4)-9
( ± 1)-2
( ± 4)-4
( ± 6)-1
( ± 6)-1
( ± 7)-6
( ± 6)-5
QmFLt
–
–
–
74 ( ± 6)-9 ( ± 3)-17 ( ± 5)
–
–
87
90
98
93
88
88
86
90
QtFL
C. Late Cretaceous-Paleogene Subduction Complexes western Tethyan Realm (Onset of rifting 270–200 Ma; Onset of Sea floor Spreading (SFS) 200–150 Ma; End of SFS 130–90 Ma)
119
53 ( ± 19)-19 ( ± 13)-28 ( ± 21)
51 ( ± 19)-19 ( ± 13)-30 ( ± 21)
C1
Late Cretaceous Ligurian-Piedmont Basin (Alpine Tethys) including Ostia
Sandstone, Mt Caio, Mt Cassio, Casanova Sandstone, Sillano and Pietraforte
formations
C2
Paleogene-earliest Miocene Remnant Ocean Basin (eastern and southern Tethys)
C2a
Tectonic Mélange (Eocene-Late Oligocene; Lucanian Ocean)
14
62 ( ± 4)-21 ( ± 6)-17 ( ± 7)
61 ( ± 4)-21 ( ± 6)-18 ( ± 7)
C2b
Saraceno Formation (Lucanian Ocean)
15
54 ( ± 11)-10 ( ± 5)-36 ( ± 10)
52 ( ± 11)-10 ( ± 5)-38 ( ± 10)
C3
Maghrebian Flysch Basin (Late Oligocene-early Miocene)
C3a
Corleto-Perticara Formation
55
66 ( ± 4)-18 ( ± 6)-16 ( ± 7)
62 ( ± 4)-18 ( ± 6)-20 ( ± 7)
C3b
Albanella Fm.
15
66 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 6)-18 ( ± 7)
62 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 6)-22 ( ± 7)
C3c
Colle Cappella Formation
24
64 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 6)-20 ( ± 7)
60 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 6)-24 ( ± 7)
C3d
Tufiti di Tusa Formation (quartzolithic suite)
16
50 ( ± 18)-18 ( ± 3)-32 ( ± 16)
46 ( ± 18)-18 ( ± 3)-36 ( ± 16)
C3e
Tufiti di Tusa Formation (volcanolithic suite)
22
14 ( ± 6)-28 ( ± 15)-58 ( ± 13)
12 ( ± 6)-28 ( ± 15)-60 ( ± 13)
C3f
Corleto Formation in wells
15
62 ( ± 11)-14 ( ± 3)-24 ( ± 9)
61 ( ± 11)-14 ( ± 3)-25 ( ± 9)
C3g
Algeciras Formation, Spain
16
57 ( ± 9)-29 ( ± 5)-14 ( ± 9)
55 ( ± 9)-29 ( ± 5)-16 ( ± 9)
C3h
Viñuela Formation, Spain
8
55 ( ± 9)-5 ( ± 5)-40 ( ± 9)
52 ( ± 7)-5 ( ± 5)-43 ( ± 9)
C3i
Beni Ider Formation, Rif, Morocco
21
40 ( ± 8)-35 ( ± 5)-25 ( ± 9)
37 ( ± 8)-35 ( ± 5)-28 ( ± 9)
C3j
Sidi Abdesslam Formation, Morocco
6
52 ( ± 6)-9 ( ± 3)-39 ( ± 6)
48 ( ± 6)-9 ( ± 3)-43 ( ± 6)
C4
Late Oligocene-earliest Miocene forearc basin over Mesomediterranean microplate
C4a
Paludi Formation
38
57 ( ± 5)-36 ( ± 6)-7 ( ± 8)
55 ( ± 5)-36 ( ± 6)-9 ( ± 8)
C4b
Stilo-Capo d'Orlando Formation
55
47 ( ± 7)-49 ( ± 6)-4 ( ± 9)
45 ( ± 7)-49 ( ± 6)-6 ( ± 9)
C4c
Frazzanò Formation
27
62 ( ± 5)-23 ( ± 4)-15 ( ± 4)
67 ( ± 5)-21 ( ± 4)-12 ( ± 4)
C4d
Piedimonte Formation
23
60 ( ± 5)-21 ( ± 4)-19 ( ± 4)
60 ( ± 5)-21 ( ± 4)-19 ( ± 4)
C4e
Ciudad Granada Fm., Spain
5
41 ( ± 7)-4 ( ± 5)-55 ( ± 8)
37 ( ± 7)-4 ( ± 5)-59 ( ± 9)
C4f
Fnideq Formation, Morocco
3
81 ( ± 6)-7 ( ± 4)-12 ( ± 6)
79 ( ± 6)-7 ( ± 4)-14 ( ± 6)
Jurassic Longobucco Group (F. Petrone and Trionto Fm.)
Lucanian Ocean Complex (Crete Nere-Frido Unit)
Lower Cretaceous Maghrebian Flysch Basin
Monte Soro Unit (Cretaceous, Sicily)
B. Proto-Oceanic Rift Troughs (Onset
of Sea floor Spreading (SFS)
180–170 Ma; End of SFS
130–120 Ma)
B1
B2
B3
B4
N
12
90
57
41
Description and Location of Unit
A. Early Mesozoic Terrestrial Rift Valleys (mainly continental redbeds; Onset of rifting 250–220 Ma)
A1
Pseudoverrucano Tuscany, Italy
A2
Calabria-Peloritani Redbeds (Longi-Taormina, Stilo and Longobucco Group)
A3
Rif, Morocco (Sebtide, Ghomaride units)
A4
Betic Cordillera (Malaguide and Alpujarride units)
Suite
Table 1
Mean framework modes of selected Circum-Mediterranean Sandstone Suites. Dataset includes southern Apennines, Calabria, Sicily, northern Africa and southern Spain.
S. Critelli
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
Description and Location of Unit
627
Baronia Synthem (early Pliocene)
Sferracavallo Synthem (middle Pliocene)
58 ( ± 26)-1 ( ± 1)-41 ( ± 27)
65 ( ± 18)-1 ( ± 2)-34 ( ± 19)
94 ( ± 17)-4 ( ± 9)-2 ( ± 11)
79 ( ± 23)-2 ( ± 4)-19 ( ± 23)
1 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 5)-96 ( ± 5)
0 ( ± 1)-5 ( ± 6)-95 ( ± 6)
RgRsRm
A3
A4
LmLvLs
50 ( ± 7)-43 ( ± 5)-7 ( ± 3)
50 ( ± 6)-39 ( ± 6)-11 ( ± 4)
50 ( ± 8)-36 ( ± 9)-14 ( ± 6)
50 ( ± 7)-38 ( ± 7)-12 ( ± 5)
1 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 4)-96 ( ± 6)
1 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 4)-96 ( ± 6)
QpLvmLsm
140
98
84
( ± 6)-12 ( ± 5)
( ± 6)-5 ( ± 2)
( ± 5)-19 ( ± 6)
( ± 7)-11 ( ± 7)
( ± 5)-5 ( ± 2)
( ± 7)-9 ( ± 7)
( ± 6)-5 ( ± 2)
( ± 5)-9 ( ± 6)
( ± 11)-18 ( ± 17)-30 ( ± 20)
( ± 8)-5 ( ± 4)-83 ( ± 12)
( ± 10)-21 ( ± 5)-31 ( ± 14)
( ± 5)-47 ( ± 8)-14 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-20 ( ± 5)-38 ( ± 6)
( ± 4)-42
( ± 5)-40
( ± 5)-28
( ± 7)-34
( ± 5)-48
( ± 5)-44
( ± 5)-40
( ± 5)-40
49 ( ± 6)-37 ( ± 8)-14 ( ± 6)
49 ( ± 3)-37 ( ± 4)-14 ( ± 4)
49 ( ± 5)-37 ( ± 6)-14 ( ± 5)
52
12
48
39
42
5
21
5
156
33
27
9
46
55
53
55
47
47
55
51
68
30
48
46
14
21
22
52 ( ± 4)-18 ( ± 3)-30 ( ± 5)
62 ( ± 5)-23 ( ± 4)-15 ( ± 4)
52 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-3 ( ± 1)
52 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-3 ( ± 1)
52 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-3 ( ± 1)
55( ± 5)-38( ± 5)-7( ± 3)
42
62
20
22
18
( ± 5)-15 ( ± 5)
( ± 5)-13 ( ± 4)
( ± 5)-13 ( ± 4)
( ± 5)-9 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-10 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-12 ( ± 4)
64
65
65
57
61
62
( ± 6)-21
( ± 4)-22
( ± 4)-22
( ± 5)-34
( ± 4)-29
( ± 5)-26
QtFL
42
72
54
26
26
N
A. Early Mesozoic Terrestrial Rift Valleys (mainly continental redbeds; Onset of rifting 250–220 Ma)
A1
65 ( ± 17)-2 ( ± 3)-33 ( ± 17)
87 ( ± 17)-7 ( ± 10)-6 ( ± 14)
A2
65 ( ± 17)-2 ( ± 3)-33 ( ± 17)
87 ( ± 17)-7 ( ± 10)-6 ( ± 14)
Suite
J. Backarc extensional rifting basins (Late Miocene)
Tortonian-Messinian sequences of western Calabria
I. Mid- Late Miocene-Pliocene Wedge-Top Basins
I1
Crotone Basin
I2
Rossano Basin
(regionalTortonian-early Pliocene
petrofacies (G1-G2)
H. Pliocene foreland basin
H1
H2
(regional early-middle Pliocene
petrofacies (F1 + F2)
G. Foreland Basin Systems: Apennines (Tortonian-Messinian)
G9
Castelvetere Formation
G10
Sorrento Sandstone Formation
G11
Argilloso-Arenacea and Frosinone fms.
G12
San Bartolomeo Formation
G13
Vallone Ponticello and Villanova del Battista formations
G14
Anzano Unit (Altavilla Supersynthem)
G15
Tempa del Prato-Civita Sandstone
(regional late Tortonian-Messinian
petrofacies (E9 -to- E153)
G16
Torrente Fiumarella Unit (Altavilla Supersynthem)
G17
Brecce della Renga Formation (calclithite petrofacies)
G18
Brecce della Renga Formation (quartzofeldspathic)
G19
Laga Formation
G20
Umbria-Marche Tortonian-Messinian basins
G. Foreland Basin Systems: Apennines (early Miocene-early Tortonian)
G1a,b,c
Cilento Group:
G1a
Pollica Formation
G1b
San Mauro Formation
G1c
Albidona Formation
G2
San Giorgio Formation
G3
Serra Palazzo Formation (Lagonegro Basin)
(regional Langhian-early Tortonian
petrofacies (G1-to-G3)
G4
Piaggine Sandstone (Serravallian-early Tortonian)
G5
Gorgoglione Formation
G6
Monte Sacro Formation
G7
Oriolo Formation
G8
Nocara Conglomerate Formation
(regional early Tortonian petrofacies
(G5-to-G8)
Suite
Table 1 (continued)
( ± 6)-21
( ± 4)-22
( ± 4)-22
( ± 5)-34
( ± 4)-29
( ± 5)-26
( ± 5)-18
( ± 5)-15
( ± 5)-15
( ± 5)-11
( ± 5)-14
( ± 5)-14
( ± 5)
( ± 4)
( ± 4)
( ± 3)
( ± 3)
( ± 4)
( ± 6)-13 ( ± 5)
( ± 6)-7 ( ± 2)
( ± 6)-26 ( ± 6)
( ± 7)-14 ( ± 7)
( ± 5)-8 ( ± 3)
( ± 7)-12 ( ± 8)
( ± 6)-7 ( ± 2)
( ± 5)-12 ( ± 6)
( ± 12)-18 ( ± 17)-33 ( ± 21)
( ± 7)-5 ( ± 4)-84 ( ± 11)
( ± 10)-21 ( ± 5)-34 ( ± 14)
( ± 5)-47 ( ± 8)-15 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-20 ( ± 5)-46 ( ± 6)
( ± 4)-42
( ± 5)-40
( ± 5)-28
( ± 7)-34
( ± 5)-48
( ± 5)-44
( ± 5)-40
( ± 5)-40
( ± 5)-33
( ± 4)-22
( ± 4)-26
( ± 3)-23
( ± 2)-30
( ± 4)-26
( ± 4)-22
( ± 4)-26
( ± 4)
( ± 4)
( ± 6)
( ± 5)
( ± 5)
( ± 6)
( ± 4)
( ± 5)
( ± 15)-12 ( ± 8)-12 ( ± 8)
( ± 8)-12 ( ± 7)-17 ( ± 6)
( ± 2)-10 ( ± 2)-22 ( ± 2)
( ± 6)-24 ( ± 5)-34 ( ± 6)
( ± 5)-17 ( ± 4)-20 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-15
( ± 5)-22
( ± 5)-12
( ± 7)-17
( ± 5)-22
( ± 6)-24
( ± 5)-22
( ± 6)-19
( ± 3)-7 ( ± 4)-19 ( ± 4)
( ± 4)-13 ( ± 3)-16 ( ± 3)
( ± 5)-20 ( ± 4)-27 ( ± 5)
( ± 5)-20 ( ± 4)-27 ( ± 5)
( ± 5)-20 ( ± 4)-27 ( ± 5)
( ± 5)-18 ( ± 4)-23 ( ± 5)
( ± 6)-9 ( ± 3)-21 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-15 ( ± 4)-11 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-15 ( ± 4)-11 ( ± 4)
( ± 5)-15 ( ± 2)-23 ( ± 4)
( ± 3)-10 ( ± 4)-24 ( ± 4)
( ± 6)-13 ( ± 3)-18 ( ± 4)
54 ( ± 6)-24 ( ± 3)-22 ( ± 4)
55 ( ± 6)-23 ( ± 5)-22 ( ± 5)
57 ( ± 9)-21 ( ± 5)-22 ( ± 7)
56 ( ± 7)-22 ( ± 5)-22 ( ± 6)
55 ( ± 7)-19 ( ± 5)-26 ( ± 7)
54 ( ± 4)-19 ( ± 3)-27 ( ± 1)
54 ( ± 5)-19 ( ± 4)-27 ( ± 4)
76
71
68
42
63
52
56
62
60
48
50
56
55
74
71
53
53
53
59
70
74
74
62
66
69
QmKP
(continued on next page)
Hosseinpour et al., 2016 and bibliography therein
unpublished data
Zuffa et al., 1980; Critelli and Ferrini, 1988; Critelli
et al., 2008, 2018; Perri et al., 2011; and unpublished
data
Critelli et al., 2008, 2018; Zaghloul et al., 2010
Critelli et al., 2008, 2018; Perri et al., 2013
Reference
48 ( ± 7)-43 ( ± 5)-9 ( ± 3)
48 ( ± 6)-39 ( ± 6)-11 ( ± 7)
55 ( ± 7)-36 ( ± 9)-9 ( ± 6)
52 ( ± 7)-38 ( ± 7)-10 ( ± 7)
46 ( ± 5)-37 ( ± 8)-17 ( ± 8)
43 ( ± 3)-37 ( ± 4)-20 ( ± 5)
45 ( ± 5)-37 ( ± 6)-18 ( ± 6)
49
11
45
34
34
45
53
46
52
44
44
53
48
50 ( ± 4)-18 ( ± 3)-32 ( ± 4)
59 ( ± 4)-23 ( ± 4)-18 ( ± 3)
50 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-5 ( ± 1)
50 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-5 ( ± 1)
50 ( ± 5)-45 ( ± 5)-5 ( ± 1)
53( ± 5)-38( ± 5)-9( ± 3)
61
63
63
55
57
60
QmFLt
S. Critelli
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
Zuffa and De Rosa, 1978
Cavazza, 1989; Puglisi, 1998
Puglisi et al., 2001
Puglisi, 2008, 2014; Puglisi et al., 2001
Guerrera et al., 1997; Puglisi et al., 2001; MartinAlgarra et al., 2000
Puglisi et al., 2001
–
–
–
–
–
–
4 ( ± 3)-30 ( ± 12)-66 ( ± 14)
45 ( ± 13)-28 ( ± 14)-27 ( ± 6)
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
Late Oligocene-earliest Miocene forearc basin over Mesomediterranean microplate
–
–
–
–
–
–
11 ( ± 6)-2 ( ± 3)-87 ( ± 7)
72 ( ± 14)-4 ( ± 3)-24 ( ± 6)
–
–
–
C3f
C3g
C3h
C3i
C3j
C4
C4a
C4b
C4c
C4d
C4e
C4f
628
12 ( ± 14)-0 ( ± 0)-88 ( ± 14)
–
G. Foreland Basin Systems: Apennines (early Miocene-early Tortonian)
G1a,b,c
G1a
4 ( ± 3)-32 ( ± 13)-64 ( ± 12)
F. Betic Cordillera: foreland sequences
D10
57 ( ± 9)-34 ( ± 13)-9 ( ± 6)
37 ( ± 27)-0 ( ± 0)-63 ( ± 27)
–
D. Craton-derived Sequences (suites from Rif and Tell represent the filling of its foreland basin system)
D1
–
–
D2
14 ( ± 3)-2 ( ± 3)-84 ( ± 6)
3 ( ± 4)-2 ( ± 2)-95 ( ± 4)
D3
–
–
D4
–
–
D5
–
–
D6
–
–
D7
–
–
D8
–
–
D9
–
–
–
8 ( ± 3)-88 ( ± 7)-4 ( ± 3)
9 ( ± 6)-4 ( ± 3)-87 ( ± 10)
0 ( ± 0)-64 ( ± 7)-36 ( ± 7)
–
0 ( ± 1)-95 ( ± 3)-4 ( ± 3)
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
–
Valloni and Zuffa, 1984
–
(continued on next page)
Critelli and Le Pera, 1990a, 1994, 1995a
Perri et al. (2017)
Perri et al., 2017
Cazzola and Critelli, 1987
Cazzola and Critelli, 1987
Van Houten, 1980; and unpublished data
Barbera et al., 2014
Carbone et al., 1987; Patacca et al., 1992;
Fornelli, 1998; Fornelli et al., 2015
Critelli, 1999
Moretti et al., 1991; Thomas et al., 2010; and
unpublished data
Zaghloul et al., 2005
Critelli, 1993
Critelli, 1993
Hosseinpour et al., 2016 and bibliography therein
(SFS) 200–150 Ma; End of SFS
4 ( ± 3)-90 ( ± 6)-6 ( ± 4)
Zuffa et al., 1980; Perri et al., 2008
Critelli, 1993, and unpublished data
El Talibi et al., 2014
Barbera et al., 2011
C3e
1 ( ± 1)-4 ( ± 5)-96 ( ± 5)
–
–
–
Hosseinpour et al., 2016 and bibliography therein
Reference
Fornelli and Piccarreta, 1997; Critelli et al., 2017
Critelli et al., 1994
Critelli, 1999; Perrotta, 2006
Critelli et al., 1990a, 1990b; Perri et al., 2012; and
unpublished data
Critelli and Le Pera, 1990a, 1990b; Perri et al., 2012;
de Capoa et al., 2002;
unpublished data
Puglisi et al., 2001
Guerrera et al., 1987; Puglisi et al., 2001
Puglisi et al., 2001; Zaghloul et al., 2002
Puglisi et al., 2001
94 ( ± 17)-0 ( ± 0)-6 ( ± 11)
30 ( ± 28)-0 ( ± 0)-70 ( ± 28)
–
–
RgRsRm
–
6 ( ± 3)-6 ( ± 6)-88 ( ± 11)
6 ( ± 3)-15 ( ± 6)-79 ( ± 11)
–
58 ( ± 26)-1 ( ± 1)-41 ( ± 27)
56 ( ± 20)-0 ( ± 0)-44 ( ± 20)
–
–
B. Proto-Oceanic Rift Troughs (Onset
of Sea floor Spreading (SFS)
180–170 Ma; End of SFS
130–120 Ma)
B1
B2
B3
B4
LmLvLs
C. Late Cretaceous-Paleogene Subduction Complexes western Tethyan Realm (Onset of rifting 270–200 Ma; Onset of Sea floor Spreading
130–90 Ma)
C1
–
–
C2
Paleogene-earliest Miocene Remnant Ocean Basin (eastern and southern Tethys)
C2a
4 ( ± 2)-58 ( ± 4)-38 ( ± 4)
37 ( ± 4)-57 ( ± 4)-6 ( ± 3)
C2b
6 ( ± 3)-5 ( ± 3)-89 ( ± 4)
56 ( ± 15)-5 ( ± 4)-39 ( ± 15)
C3
C3a
8 ( ± 3)-16 ( ± 5)-76 ( ± 7)
64 ( ± 11)-16 ( ± 3)-20 ( ± 6)
C3b
3 ( ± 3)-10 ( ± 6)-87 ( ± 6)
84 ( ± 6)-6 ( ± 5)-10 ( ± 5)
C3c
11 ( ± 6)-2 ( ± 3)-87 ( ± 7)
72 ( ± 14)-4 ( ± 3)-24 ( ± 6)
C3d
8 ( ± 3)-26 ( ± 5)-66 ( ± 8)
47 ( ± 7)-29 ( ± 7)-24 ( ± 3)
QpLvmLsm
Suite
Table 1 (continued)
S. Critelli
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
59
50
76
76
74
67
17 ( ± 9)-0 ( ± 0)-83 ( ± 9)
18 ( ± 4)-10 ( ± 4)-72 ( ± 6)
10 ( ± 5)-23 ( ± 9)-67 ( ± 10)
10 ( ± 4)-26 ( ± 6)-64 ( ± 6)
12 ( ± 5)-15 ( ± 5)-73 ( ± 7)
3 ( ± 4)-21 ( ± 13)-76 ( ± 13)
3 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 5)-81 ( ± 9)
3 ( ± 4)-16 ( ± 5)-81 ( ± 9)
6 ( ± 5)-17 ( ± 8)-77 ( ± 10)
G2
G3
(regional Langhian-early Tortonian
petrofacies (G1-to-G3)
G4
G5
G6
G7
G8
(regional early Tortonian petrofacies
(G5-to-G8)
629
( ± 12)-4 ( ± 2)-74 ( ± 12)
( ± 6)-7 ( ± 3)-66 ( ± 6)
( ± 12)-0 ( ± 0)-75 ( ± 12)
( ± 20)-1 ( ± 1)-60 ( ± 20)
( ± 24)-1 ( ± 2)-69 ( ± 24)
( ± 12)-4 ( ± 2)-74 ( ± 12)
( ± 12)-3 ( ± 3)-72 ( ± 13)
24 ( ± 14)-0 ( ± 0)-76 ( ± 14)
32 ( ± 7)-0 ( ± 0)-68 ( ± 7)
28 ( ± 9)-0 ( ± 0)-72 ( ± 9)
19 ( ± 18)-0 ( ± 0)-81 ( ± 18)
2 ( ± 2)-0 ( ± 0)-98 ( ± 2)
7 ( ± 6)-4 ( ± 2)-89 ( ± 7)
26 ( ± 6)-4 ( ± 2)-70 ( ± 12)
15 ( ± 5)-15 ( ± 2)-70 ( ± 7)
22
27
25
39
30
22
25
J. Backarc extensional rifting basins (Late Miocene)
9 ( ± 4)-4 ( ± 7)-87 ( ± 9)
I. Mid- Late Miocene-Pliocene Wedge-Top Basins
I1
13 ( ± 13)-1 ( ± 1)-86 ( ± 13)
I2
25 ( ± 13)-1 ( ± 2)-74 ( ± 13)
(regionalTortonian-early Pliocene
19 ( ± 13)-1 ( ± 2)-80 ( ± 13)
petrofacies (G1-G2)
H. Pliocene foreland basin
H1
H2
(regional early-middle Pliocene
petrofacies (F1 + F2)
G10
G11
G12
G13
G14
G15
(regional late Tortonian-Messinian
petrofacies (E9 -to- E153)
G16
G17
G18
G19
G20
G. Foreland Basin Systems: Apennines (Tortonian-Messinian)
G9
9 ( ± 4)-6 ( ± 7)-85 ( ± 9)
34 ( ± 13)-0 ( ± 0)-66 ( ± 13)
28 ( ± 9)-12 ( ± 5)-60 ( ± 8)
47 ( ± 11)-24 ( ± 8)-29 ( ± 7)
5 ( ± 4)-37 ( ± 8)-58 ( ± 8)
G1c
( ± 14)-5
( ± 14)-3
( ± 18)-0
( ± 21)-2
( ± 21)-1
( ± 14)-5
( ± 18)-3
( ± 5)-54
( ± 3)-51
( ± 0)-55
( ± 3)-68
( ± 3)-83
( ± 5)-54
( ± 3)-50
( ± 16)
( ± 14)
( ± 18)
( ± 21)
( ± 22)
( ± 16)
( ± 19)
76 ( ± 9)-2 ( ± 1)-22 ( ± 6)
62 ( ± 17)-0 ( ± 1)-38 ( ± 17)
50 ( ± 20)-1 ( ± 1)-49 ( ± 20)
56 ( ± 18)-1 ( ± 1)-43 ( ± 19)
6 ( ± 5)-0 ( ± 0)-94 ( ± 5)
6 ( ± 4)-0 ( ± 0)-94 ( ± 4)
6 ( ± 4)-0 ( ± 0)-94 ( ± 4)
4 ( ± 9)-0 ( ± 0)-96 ( ± 9)
3 ( ± 2)-0 ( ± 0)-97 ( ± 3)
27 ( ± 9)-2 ( ± 1)-71 ( ± 9)
55 ( ± 14)-4 ( ± 4)-41 ( ± 14)
28 ( ± 6)-15 ( ± 2)-57 ( ± 12)
41
46
45
30
16
41
37
41 ( ± 14)-5 ( ± 5)-54 ( ± 16)
( ± 7)-15 ( ± 6)-26 ( ± 6)
( ± 12)-17 ( ± 6)-33 ( ± 12)
( ± 15)-22 ( ± 13)-2 ( ± 5)
( ± 15)-14 ( ± 6)-10 ( ± 9)
( ± 15)-14 ( ± 6)-12 ( ± 9)
( ± 15)-18 ( ± 7)-15 ( ± 9)
59 ( ± 11)-38 ( ± 8)-3 ( ± 5)
59 ( ± 11)-38 ( ± 8)-3 ( ± 5)
5 ( ± 4)-37 ( ± 8)-58 ( ± 8)
G1b
LmLvLs
QpLvmLsm
Suite
Table 1 (continued)
( ± 4)-35 ( ± 7)-50 ( ± 8)
( ± 9)-23 ( ± 7)-34 ( ± 7)
( ± 7)-2 ( ± 2)-34 ( ± 7)
( ± 9)-4 ( ± 7)-35 ( ± 11)
( ± 9)-7 ( ± 7)-32 ( ± 11)
( ± 8)-10 ( ± 6)-34 ( ± 9)
( ± 7)-13 ( ± 8)-33 ( ± 8)
( ± 6)-28 ( ± 12)-54 ( ± 11)
( ± 8)-39 ( ± 16)-49 ( ± 17)
( ± 10)-13 ( ± 7)-33 ( ± 10)
( ± 10)-46 ( ± 9)-12 ( ± 4)
( ± 7)-13 ( ± 8)-33 ( ± 8)
( ± 10)-25 ( ± 9)-34 ( ± 11)
72 ( ± 7)-2 ( ± 2)-26 ( ± 7)
26 ( ± 11)-18 ( ± 12)-56 ( ± 13)
27 ( ± 17)-23 ( ± 15)-50 ( ± 15)
27 ( ± 13)-21 ( ± 12)-52 ( ± 13)
44 ( ± 14)-39 ( ± 13)-17 ( ± 8)
41 ( ± 8)-43 ( ± 7)-16 ( ± 7)
42 ( ± 8)-41 ( ± 9)-17 ( ± 7)
29 ( ± 34)-65 ( ± 34)-6 ( ± 3)
2 ( ± 2)-92 ( ± 7)-6 ( ± 4)
8 ( ± 2)-55 ( ± 14)-37 ( ± 13)
8 ( ± 10)-10 ( ± 5)-82 ( ± 12)
–
54
18
12
54
42
54
41
54 ( ± 16)-20 ( ± 9)-26 ( ± 12)
15
43
64
61
61
56
26 ( ± 13)-38 ( ± 16)-35 ( ± 13)
42 ( ± 5)-44 ( ± 7)-14 ( ± 7)
37 ( ± 8)-18 ( ± 6)-45 ( ± 10)
54 ( ± 10)-3 ( ± 2)-43 ( ± 10)
54 ( ± 10)-3 ( ± 2)-43 ( ± 10)
RgRsRm
and
and
and
and
and
Le Pera, 1995a, 1998
Loiacono, 1988; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994
Le Pera, 1990b, 1994
Le Pera, 1995a, 1998
Le Pera, 1995a, 1998
Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, Caracciolo et al., 2012;
unpublished data
Barone et al., 2008; and unpublished data
Barone et al., 2008
Matano et al., 2014
Matano et al., 2014; and unpublished data
Barone et al., 2006
Critelli et al., 2007
Critelli et al., 2007
Corda and Morelli, 1996; Stalder et al., 2018
Chiocchini and Cipriani, 1992
Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, 1995b; and unpublished
data
Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, 1995b;
Critelli et al., 2007
Matano et al., 2014; and unpublished data
Matano et al., 2014
Barone et al., 2006
unpublished data
Critelli
Critelli
Critelli
Critelli
Critelli
Critelli, 1987; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994, Critelli and Le
Pera, 1995a, 1995b
De Rosa and Gallo, 1982; Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a,
1998
Barone et al., 2006
Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, 1998
Reference
S. Critelli
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
S. Critelli
Fig. 2. Geological sketch map of the Circum-Mediterranean orogenic belts (after Critelli et al., 2008, 2017) and location of the studied area. Maghrebian Chain
includes the Rif Chain in Morocco, the Tell Chain in Algeria, and the Sicilian Maghrebian in Sicily.
the Internal units of the Betic Cordillera, the Calabrian terranes
(Amodio Morelli et al., 1976; Scandone, 1982; Bonardi et al., 2001), the
Rif and Tell Chains, including ophiolites, crystalline basement rocks
and Mesozoic to Tertiary sedimentary sequences; (2) The western Tethys oceanic realm, including obducted Mesozoic ophiolite-bearing
terranes, that are extended in the western and northern portions of the
circum-Mediterranean region, and include the Nevado-Filabride unit of
the Betic Cordillera, the Ligurian-Piedmont units of the Alps, Corsica
and northern side of Apennines, and the ophiolitic units of northern
Calabria; (3) The eastern oceanic realm, including the Lucanian
Oceanic terranes, having ophiolitic blocks, metasedimentary and sedimentary rocks, and the Maghrebian Flysch units of northern Africa and
Sicily; (4) The external domain, including the (i) inner carbonate
platform having Mesozoic to lower Miocene shallow-water carbonate
strata, (ii) deep-marine pelagic basins, having Mesozoic to lower Miocene pelagic deep-sea sequences (i.e. the Lagonegro Basin in southern
Apennines), (iii) Mesozoic to Quaternary carbonate outer platform (i.e.
Apulia Unit) and low-land or cratonic regions (i.e. African and Iberian
continental margins) (Critelli et al., 2011, 2017 and references therein)
(Fig. 2).
In the southern and eastern oceanic realm, the Paleogene (Eocene to
early Oligocene) tectonic phase corresponds with the subduction of the
oceanic lithosphere beneath the Mesomediterranean microplate and
African plate. This tectonic stage is responsible for the initial flexure
and the onset of consequent general erosional processes of the African
and Adria continental margins. The Paleogene tectonic phase caused
regional metamorphism at around 38 Ma (e.g. Steck and Hunziker,
1994) and intra-orogenic magmatism along the Periadriatic zone. The
middle-late Oligocene (32–30 Ma) is characterized by intense magmatic
activity, part of which is directly linked to the Algero-Provencal rift
(Provence and Sardinia), part along the Insubric line and part along the
periadriatic domain. In the Alps and northern Apennines, the Eocene
and Oligocene siliciclastic sedimentary sequences record provenance
from the (a) Iberian plate (Corsica-Sardinia-Brianconnais), (b) Adria
plate (austroalpine domain), (c) European plate, (d) syneruptive magmatic activity, and from (e) both European and Adria forebulges. Final
closure of the eastern and southern Tethys oceanic realm is marked by
accretionary processes of the Mesomediterranean microplate (represented by the internal domains of the circum-Mediterranean orogenic belt; Fig. 2) over the deformed oceanic terranes and the African,
Iberian and Adria continental margins. Since early Miocene, huge volumes of clastic sedimentary sequences, dominantly deep-marine turbidite systems, were deposited at the front of the accretionary orogenic
detrital modes are then reported as Qt%-F%-L% and Qm%-F%-Lt%.
Description of sandstone petrofacies includes values of QtFL% and
QmFLt%. General descriptions of changing nature of detrital budget in
terms of calculations of both phaneritic and aphanitic rock/lithic
fragments as values of Rg (plutonic) Rs (sedimentary) Rm (metamorphic) are also included in the petrofacies definition.
The available data include modal point counts for huge amounts of
rock samples. Attention here is restricted to sandstone suites of key
areas of the circum-Mediterranean belt, including Betic Cordillera
(Spain), Rif Chain (Morocco), Sicilian belt and Apennines (Italy) where
data are useful with comparable methodology to define overall compositional trends.
Because of the large occurrence of Mesozoic to Tertiary carbonate
systems, both from large shallow-marine carbonate platform systems
and deep-marine pelagic systems, in the paleogeographic fragmentation
of the continental margins, notable compositional signatures of the
circum-Mediterranean sandstone suites are provenance from carbonates, both coeval and noncoeval, and extrabasinal and intrabasinal,
representing key detrital signals during tectonic evolution of sedimentary basins (e.g. Zuffa, 1980, 1985, 1987; Fontana, 1991; Critelli et al.,
2007). Here, coeval carbonate grains, as such as other coeval grain
types (i.e. glauconite, etc.) are not included in recalculated grain
parameters and in typical triangular diagrams, while extrabasinal carbonate grains (ancient carbonate lithic fragments) are included in recalculated grain parameters and related diagrams. Only exception, in
recalculations and related diagrams, of including coeval grains are
neovolcanic particles related to active magmatic activity in the source
areas.
3. Geodynamic setting and time frame
The study area contains rocks affected by numerous geodynamic
events that occurred between Paleozoic orogenies and the present time.
Apart the Paleozoic history of exposed terranes, the key geodynamic
events within the circum-Mediterranean orogens occurred after breakup of Pangea. In this paper we focus on the Mesozoic to Cenozoic history of clastic sedimentary sequences using sandstone strata to decipher
the close relations between regional provenance and paleotectonics.
Circum-Mediterranean mountain belts, from the Betic Cordillera to
the Northern Apennines and from the northern Africa (Rif and Tell
chains) to Calabria are subdivided into the following morphotectonic
domains (e.g. Perrone et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008, 2011, 2017;
Bonardi et al., 2009) (Fig. 2): (1) The internal domain, represented by
630
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
S. Critelli
Fig. 3. Chart identifying time slices for which paleotectonic maps are constructed with accompanying QFL diagram. Time scale after Harland et al. (1989).
The following brief statements define the seven time slice stratigraphically related to major events (Fig. 3).
terranes in diverse foreland basin systems all along the various tracts of
the circum-Mediterranean belt. Fragmentation of the Mesomediterranean microplate occurred during two main rifting stages within
the western Mediterranean, the late Oligocene-earliest Miocene AlgeroProvencal-Balearic rifting basin, and the mid-late Miocene and Pliocene
Tyrrhenian Sea rifting basin (e.g. Malinverno and Ryan, 1986; Dewey
et al., 1989; Doglioni, 1991; Doglioni et al., 1996).
Sandstone detrital modes are discussed in conjunction with paleotectonic maps to indicate their relationships to key geological events.
1. Mid-Late Triassic (230 Ma); Terrestrial Rift-valley stage after breakup of Pangea and onset of the Tethyan taphrogenesis; This phase
corresponds with deposition of continental redbeds suite (mainly
Pseudoverrucano unit; A1-to-A4 suites in Table 1).
2. Early Cretaceous-Earliest Paleogene (110–60 Ma); Early Cretaceous
(110) sea-floor spreading of the Tethyan realms, and deposition of
631
Earth-Science Reviews 185 (2018) 624–648
S. Critelli
3.
4.
5.
6.
and bibliography therein for major details). The continental redbeds
represent the oldest strata of successions with a similar tectono-sedimentary evolution from the Middle Triassic to compressional deformation, and they represent the onset of Mesozoic sedimentation
during the rift-valley stage (Fig. 4). Middle Triassic–Lower Jurassic
continental redbeds (in the internal domains of the Betic, Maghrebian,
and Apenninic chains) can be considered a regional lithosome marking
the Triassic-Jurassic rift-valley stage of Tethyan rifting. Sandstones are
quartzose to quartzolithic and represent a provenance of continental
block and recycled orogen (Fig. 4), made up mainly of Paleozoic metasedimentary rocks similar to those underlying the redbeds.The close
similarity in composition, sedimentology, and diagenetic evolution of
the redbeds in different sectors of the circum-Mediterranean orogens
suggests deposition in a distinctive Mesozoic belt (Pseudoverrucano
Subdomain; Perrone et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008, 2018). The redbeds were deposited on a block of Variscan continental crust. This block
had a central erosional mountain area that provided terrigenous sediments to surrounding intracontinental rift basins. After having been
deeply eroded during the Triassic, the mountain areas were transformed to a peneplaned area of low relief, whereas the former continental basins evolved to neritic carbonate basins after the start of the
Early Jurassic. The Triassic Pseudoverrucano-Verrucano Domains were
surrounded by the German-Andalusian facies, now cropping out in the
Iberian and African plates, whereas eastward it opened toward Tethyan
marine domains (Fig. 4).
quartzose turbidite sandstones in the southern and eastern Tethyan
ocenic realm (B2-to-B4 suites in Table 1), and Late Cretaceous-earliest Paleogene (60 Ma) closure of the western Tethyan realm, and
deposition of quartzofeldspathic and quartzolithic turbidite sandstone suites (C1 suite in Table 1; Ostia Sandstone, Mt. Caio, Mt.
Cassio, Casanova Sandstone, Sillano and Pietraforte formations;
Valloni and Zuffa, 1984).
Late Oligocene to earliest Miocene (30–22 Ma); Closure of the
southern and eastern Tethyan oceanic realm, and onset of continental accretionary processes involved the internal domains of the
Mesomediterranean crustal block; eastern Tethyan realm experienced subduction processes, onset of calcalkaline magmatic arc, and
accomodation of quartzolithic and volcanolithic sandstone suites
(C2a-to-C3j in Table 1) in the remnant ocean basin, and quartzofeldspathic sandstone suites (C4a-to-C4f in Table 1) in the subsiding
areas of the overplate (forearc region within the Mesomediterranean
microplate).
Langhian to early Tortonian; 15–10 Ma); growing of the circumMediterranean orogenic belt and onset of deep-marine foreland
basin systems, particularly in the Apennines belt. Flexure of the
northern Africa continental margin generating huge volumes of
cratonic-derived turbidite sandstones (Numidian Sandstone and
other suites; D1-to-D10 in Table 1).
Late Tortonian to early Pliocene (8–5 Ma), increasing eastward
displacement of the Mesomediterranean microplate involving in
deformation large portions of the Adria continental margin. Onset of
the Tyrrhenian Sea rifting processes, and eastward displacement of
the southern Apennines foreland basin system.
Late Messinian-Pliocene; partially a detail of the previous time slice,
increasing uplift and deep erosion of the Mesomediterranean microplate and the Alps, to the west and southwest and to the north,
respectively; abrupt increasing of the rifting of the Tyrrhenian Sea.
4.2. Map 2. Neotethyan proto-oceanic rift-trough sandstone suites
(Mesozoic)
The continental redbeds pass upward to Middle Jurassic transitional
shallow-marine and deep-marine mainly carbonate sequences, including quartzose sandstone turbidite systems (i.e. the Longobucco
Group; Zuffa et al., 1980; Santantonio and Teale, 1987) that represent
the following proto-oceanic stage during opening of the western Tethys
Ocean (Perrone et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008; Fig. 5). Sedimentary
cover of the Tethyan oceanic crust includes Upper Jurassic mudrocks,
pelagic carbonate strata, argillaceous chert, isolated quartzose turbidite
strata (Critelli, 1993), radiolarian chert, and Lower Cretaceous pelagic
limestone, marl, claystone and quartzose sandstone. Quartzose turbidite sandstone are widespread in the oceanic realm (e.g. Critelli, 1993;
Barbera et al., 2011 and bibliography therein) testifying lowland regions with no evident abrupt uplifted continental block signals.
Quartzose detrital supply is uncertain in terms of provenance, it can be
derived from African continental margin or the lowland relief of the
Mesomediterranean microplate (e.g. Perrone et al., 2006; Critelli et al.,
2008).
Although there are still conflicting ideas about whether the westernmost branch of the Neotethys opened as a single ocean (Schmid
et al., 2008; Schettino and Turco, 2011), or was divided into northern
and southern branches (Stampfli et al., 2002), much evidence suggests
two distinctive ocean basins having different time of closure, the
northern and western Nevado-Filabride, Ligurian-Piedmont oceanic
realm, and the southern and eastern Maghrebian, Lucanian, Ionian
oceanic realm that remain an active oceanic branch during Paleogene.
4. Paleogeography and Paleotectonics and related key detrital
modes
At regional scale, the key clastic stratigraphic units that are discussed here comprise (a) the Late Triassic-Early Jurassic continental
redbeds that mark the fragmentation of Pangea identifying distintive
continental margins and representing the terrestrial rift-valley sequences of the Tethyan rifting, following by Jurassic shallow-to-deepmarine sequences, including sandstone turbidites interbedded with
carbonates and pelagic mudrocks; (b) the Late Jurassic to Early
Cretaceous sandstones of the Tethyan Ocean realm; (c) the Paleogene
clastic strata of the final closure of the eastern-southern Tethyan
oceanic realm, including the Paleogene subduction complex (accretionary wedge) of the Lucanian oceanic terranes, and the early Miocene
clastics of the forearc region; (d) the Paleogene sandstone units of the
African and Iberian continental margins; (e) the Miocene sandstone
clastic wedges representing the key foreland basin systems of the Betic
Cordillera, the northern Africa orogen (Rif and Tell), and the Apennines
(Fig. 2). Further details and descriptions are in the discussion of the
paleotectonic maps in this section.
4.1. Map 1. Terrestrial rift-valley sequences
4.2.1. Western Tethyan realm
Over the ophiolitic gabbros (166 to 163 Ma; Bill et al., 2001) in
diverse portions of occurrence of ophiolitic suites of Alps, Betic Cordillera, Corsica and Apennines, sedimentary sequences include siliceous
shale, radiolarian chert, calcareous ooze, marl and shale, and Calpionella Limestone Formation (late Tithonian to Valanginian; Bill et al.,
2001 and references therein). Occurrence of clastic strata during rifting
and the sea-floor spreading of the western Tethyan realm is minor; few
sandstone turbidites are interbedded with Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous pelagic sequences and sandstones are quartz-rich; its occurrence is
on the sedimentary cover of ophiolitiferous suites in Calabria (Frido
First evidences of nascent rift-valley sequences are represented by
widespread occurrence of Triassic to earliest Jurassic continental redbeds lying over Paleozoic metasedimentary and locally (Calabrian terranes) plutonic rocks in the Betics (Perri et al., 2013), Rif and Tell
(Zaghloul et al., 2010), Calabrian terranes and Tuscany (e.g. Perrone
et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008, 2018; Perri et al., 2008, 2011). These
continental redbeds are fluvial strata of conglomerate, sandstone and
mudrock mostly reddish-purple in color and formally are named
“Verrucano” and “Pseudoverrucano” in the Italian stratigraphic record,
and Saladilla Formation in the Betic Cordillera (e.g. Perrone et al., 2006
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Fig. 4. Paleotectonic map 1 for the Middle Triassic time, showing the Middle Triassic–Lower Liassic continental redbeds (in the internal domains of the Betic,
Maghrebian, and Apenninic chains). The redbeds can be considered a regional lithosome marking the Triassic-Jurassic rift-valley stage of Tethyan rifting, which led
to the Pangaea breakup and subsequent development of a mosaic of plates and microplates. Note that conventionally, the Apulia microplate is referred to the
Mesozoic paleogeography and paleotectonics, while, during Tertiary it is called Adria microplate (see Channel et al., 1979). Sandstone suites related to the Map 1
with QtFL and QpLvmLsm diagrams (main provenance fields in QtFL are those of Dickinson et al., 1983; Dickinson, 1985) of the redbeds (Pseudoverrucano
lithosome) sandstone suite.
Oceanic belt (Bouillin et al., 1986) through related terrains in southern
Apennines, which have been interpreted as deposited in an oceanic belt
(Lucanian Ocean) representing the northeastward extension of the
Maghrebian Flysch Basin (Bonardi et al., 2001; de Capoa et al., 2003;
Guerrera et al., 2005; Perrone et al., 2014). Sandstone suites of the
southern and eastern oceanic branch are exclusively quartzose in
composition (Qt90–98 F2–9 L0–3) (Table 1; Fig. 5). Proto-Oceanic rifttroughs include diverse well-preserved stratigraphic sequences all along
the circum-Mediterranean orogen. The Jurassic slope to deep-marine
sequence of the Longobucco Group (Fosso Petrone and Trionto Formations; Zuffa et al., 1980; Santantonio and Teale, 1987; Santantonio
et al., 2016) include about 1000 m thick strata of sandstone and shale
interbedded with pelagic limestones and olistostroma. Turbidite sandstones are quartzarenite and sublitharenite (Zuffa et al., 1980) lying
over shallow-marine carbonate and sandstone (Bocchigliero Formation)
and continental redbeds (Torrente Duno Formation). Other correlated
Mesozoic continental-margin sequences are more pelagic with few
sandstone strata having quartzarenite to quartzolithic compositions.
The Upper Jurassic-to-Cretaceous turbidite sandstones within the
ocean floor of the eastern Tethyan realm are quartzose sandstones in
the Lucanian Oceanic terranes (i.e., Frido-Crete Nere formations;
Qm89 ± 4 F9 ± 4 Lt2 ± 1; Critelli, 1993), in few sandstone strata of
the Sicilide Complex and the Sicilian Monte Soro Unit (Qm91 ±
4 F4 ± 1 Lt5 ± 3; Barbera et al., 2011). The eastern and southern
Tethyan realm includes the Maghrebian Flysch Basin of northern Africa.
The most typical and widest outcropping Massylian flysch beds are
constituted by the Aptian–Albian Flysch of the Chouamat Nappe, a
thick succession of Aptian–Albian pelites (locally marly) and mediumto fine-grained siliciclastic turbidite sandstones upwards. The succession is 150–250 m thick and starts with bluish marls and mudstones up
Unit; Bonardi et al., 1988; Critelli, 1993), and in the Palombini Shale
Formation of northern Apennines. Sandstones are more abundant since
Late Cretaceous, and composition change to be quartzolithic and
quartzofeldspathic, during stages of closure of the western Tethyan
realm (e.g. Valloni and Zuffa, 1984; Cavazza et al., 2018).
4.2.2. Eastern Tethyan realm
Rifted continental-margin sequences of Longobucco Group (earlyMiddle Jurassic), Jurassic-to-Cretaceous quartzose turbidites of the
Lucanian Ocean Complex (Crete Nere and Frido Units), Cretaceous-toEarly Tertiary Monte Soro Unit, and the Lower Cretaceous Maghrebian
Flysch Basin, are the main well-exposed sedimentary sequences having
sandstone suites of the Eastern Tethyan oceanic branch and its continental margin. In the western Mediterranean, the Maghrebian Flysch
Nappes are mainly made of pelagic fine grained sediments and of carbonatoclastic and siliciclastic turbidites spanning since the Middle-Late
Jurassic (Durand-Delga, 1980; Suter, 1980; Wildi, 1983; de Capoa
et al., 2007, 2013; Zaghloul et al., 2007). The sedimentary successions
of these Flysch Nappes were deposited in a very deep marine basin
known as Maghrebian Flysch Basin. These terrains extend over more
than 2000 km from the western Betic Cordillera through the Rif Chain
to the eastern Sicilian Maghrebides and up southern and northern Appenines (Guerrera et al., 2005; de Capoa et al., 2013; Perrone et al.,
2014). The Maghrebian Flysch Basin has been considered as a southern
branch of the western Tethys, separated by means of a Mesomediterranean microplate from the Nevado–Filabride–Ligurian-Piedmont
western and northern branch (Guerrera et al., 1993, 2005, 2012;
Bonardi et al., 2001; Chalouan et al., 2001; Chalouan and Michard,
2004; Belayouni et al., 2012). Other authors, however, interpreted this
basin as a single extension toward the west of the Piedmont–Ligurian
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evolves to Upper Cretaceous claystones and marls with siliceous black
shales and black radiolarites, sandstones, pelites and marly limestones,
followed by Paleocene–Oligocene marls, breccias and nummuliticbearing limestones. The sequence is topped by Aquitanian–Burdigalian
Numidian sandstone suites that marks the deformation and accretion of
oceanic terranes and the onset of collisional events (Wildi, 1983; Gübeli
et al., 1984; Durand-Delga and Olivier, 1988; Thomas et al., 2010).
4.3. Late cretaceous closure of western Tethys
The western realm of the Tethys Ocean is known to be progressively
closed during Late Cretaceous to earliest Paleogene. Numerous deepmarine turbidite formations of northern Apennines (Ostia, Sillano,
Pietraforte, Casanova, Cassio and Caio formations) and Corsica testify
the progressive closure of the western Tethyan oceanic realm, (e.g.
Valloni and Zuffa, 1984; Cavazza et al., 2018). Sandstones are quartzolithic in the Late Cretaceous formations that pass to quartzofeldspathic and quartzo-feldspatholithic sandstones during the Late Cretaceous-Paleogene (Valloni and Zuffa, 1984; Cavazza et al., 2018).
4.4. Map 3. Late Paleogene-earliest Miocene closure of eastern and southern
Tethys
The eastern Tethyan oceanic area (Maghrebian and Lucanian basins) experienced deformation and accretion, involving in a remnant
ocean basin (Fig. 6). A tectonic mélange (Liguride Complex of Ogniben,
1969; or Northern-Calabrian Unit; Critelli, 1993, 1999) was formed in
this time frame, including olistholiths and broken formations of oceanic
sequences and crystalline rocks (Critelli, 1993). The subduction of the
eastern Tethyan oceanic lithosphere beneath the Mesomediterranean
microplate, generates a continental-margin calcalkaline volcanic arc in
Sardinia (e.g. Scandone, 1982; Assorgia et al., 1986; Malinverno and
Ryan, 1986; Channell and Mareschal, 1989; Dewey et al., 1989) and the
progressive closure of the Lucanian and Maghrebian oceanic realm. At
its top, the tectonic mélange includes a Late Paleogene (upper Eocene to
upper Oligocene) quartzolithic, quartzofeldspathic and volcanolithic
sandstone strata (Fig. 6) tectonically assembled within the tectonic
mélange (Northern-Calabrian Unit; Critelli, 1993; Critelli et al., 2017).
In the Maghrebian basin, the Cretaceous and Paleogene pelagic sequences are capped, during the early Miocene, by a series of turbidite
sandstone systems that have been subdivided in several lithostratigraphic formations. These latter successions occur from eastern to
western, in the (i) southern Apennines and Sicily, and include the
Corleto, Albanella, Colle Cappella, Tufiti di Tusa, Poggio Maria, Reitano, Piedimonte formations; (ii) northern Africa, and include the Beni
Ider, Fnideq and Sidi Abdesslam formations, and (iii) southern Spain
and Betic Cordillera, and include Algeciras, Viñuela and Ciudad
Granada formations.
Along the accreted Mesomediterranean microplate, the subduction
of the eastern oceanic realm, generated a series of subsiding depocenters in which are accumulated hundred meters of clastic sedimentary sequences. The Stilo-Capo d'Orlando, Paludi and Frazzanò formations are the key sandstone suites that are accumulated over the
Calabrian accretionary wedge in the forearc region.
Fig. 5. Paleotectonic map 2 for the Early Cretaceous to earliest Paleogene time,
showing the northern and western Tethyan realm, and the southern and eastern
Tethyan realm, during the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous sea-floor spreading,
and location of plate mosaic in the western Mediterranean. Northern and
western Tethyan realm (Nevado-filabrie, Ligurian-Piedmont basins) was progressively closed since Late Cretaceous to earliest Paleogene (boundary of
subduction plane is marked) due to convergence between Adria-Europe and
Iberia-Mesomediterranean plates (after Critelli et al., 2011, modified). Sandstone suites are plotted in the map and mark two main regional suites, a
quartzose sandstone suite to the south, in the southern and eastern Tethyan
realm, and a quartzofeldspathic and minor quartzolithic sandstone suite in the
western and northern Tethyan realm. Data set of these sandstone suites are
listed in Table 1 (including references).
4.5. Lucanian Remnant ocean basin
4.5.1. Quartzofeldspathic petrofacies
During Paleogene to early Miocene, the internal domain of the
Calabrian terranes was partially covered by synorogenic clastic wedges,
including deep-marine turbidite sandstones and conglomerates. Clastic
units include the Upper Oligocene to lower Miocene Frazzanò
Formation (de Capoa et al., 2000) and the Stilo-Capo d'Orlando Formation, in the southern sector of the Calabrian terranes, and the upper
Oligocene to lower Miocene Paludi Formation (northern sector)
(Table 1). These sandstones are quartzofeldspathic (mean of the Paludi
to 60 m thick, overlain by thick bedded quartzarenite stratasets usually
amalgamated (El Talibi et al., 2014). Sandstone are quartzarenite
(Qm94 ± 7 F2 ± 1 Lt4 ± 2; El Talibi et al., 2014). The succession
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Fig. 6. Paleotectonic map 3 for the late Oligocene-early
Miocene time, showing closure of the eastern and southern
Tethyan
oceanic
realm,
and
locations
of
the
Mesomediterranean microplate, the Sardinia/Periadriatic
magmatic arc, and major deep-sea fan. During earliest
Miocene, the western portions of the Mesomediterranean
microplate overthrust on the southern Iberian margin forming
the Betic Cordillera and its related foreland basin system.
Adapted after various sources including de Capoa et al.
(2002), Critelli et al. (2011, 2017), Amendola et al. (2016),
Guerrera and Martín-Martín (2014) and Perri et al. (2017).
Sandstone suites related to the Map 3 with QtFL diagram include quartzolithic and volcanolithic sandstone suites filling
the eastern (Lucanian) and southern (Maghrebian) Tethyan
realm, and quartzofeldspathic sandstone suites in related
forearc region.
Critelli, 1993), Albanella, Corleto and Colle Cappella Formations (Q61
F17 L22; Sicilide Complex, Auct.; e.g. Critelli et al., 1994, 2011, 2013;
Fornelli and Piccarreta, 1997; Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, 1998;
Table 1). The quartzolithic petrofacies is interbedded with mixtures of
siliciclastic and carbonatoclastic strata. Metamorphiclastic quartzolithic
sandstones occur also in the lower portions of the Tufiti di Tusa Formation (Q46 F18 L36), below the volcaniclastic strata (Critelli et al.,
1990b) and characterize all the thickness of the Corleto, Colle Cappella
and Albanella formations (Critelli et al., 1994; Fornelli and Piccarreta,
1997). They are derived from low to middle grade metasedimentary
terranes, and are partly derived also from ophiolitic rocks (Fornelli and
Piccarreta, 1997). Interbedded thick carbonatoclastic (calcarenitemarl) strata within the Tufiti di Tusa, Albanella and Corleto Formations, testify a provenance from the forebulge area. These sandstones
reflect a provenance evolution from sedimentary-dominant (both
Formation, Q55 F36 L9; Zuffa and De Rosa, 1978; mean of the StiloCapo d'Orlando Formation, Q45 F49 L6; Puglisi, 1987; Cavazza, 1989;
Nigro and Puglisi, 1993; Critelli et al., 1995) and reflect their local
provenance from crystalline rocks of the Calabrian terranes. The tectonic setting of these basins is complex; the sequences suturing some
crystalline thrust units could represent a wedge-top deposition on advancing calabrian thrust-belt (e.g. Weltje, 1992; Patacca et al., 1993;
Wallis et al., 1993) or may represent deposition in a forearc setting (e.g.
Cavazza et al., 1997; Cavazza and Ingersoll, 2005).
4.5.2. Quartzolithic petrofacies
The early Miocene quartzolithic petrofacies widely occurs at the
final basin-fill stage of the remnant Lucanian Ocean. The quartzolithic
sandstone suites occur in the siliciclastic deep-sea turbidite systems of
the Saraceno Formation (Q52 F10 L38; Liguride Complex, Auct.;
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carbonate and siliciclastic fragments) detritus to low-grade metamorphic and sedimentary mixtures. The provenance evolution testifies
the initial signal of accretion and unroofing of the frontal thrust system
of the northern Calabrian terranes (Sila Unit; e.g. Messina et al., 1994;
Critelli and Le Pera, 1998).
metamorphic sources, and minor extrabasinal carbonate grains and
volcanic detritus. Source regions for the quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies are from exhumed and uplifted Paleozoic metasedimentary
terranes widely exposed in the internal domains of the circum-Mediterranean belt (i.e. Malaguide, Ghomaride and Sila Unit).
4.5.3. Volcaniclastic petrofacies
Syneruptive volcanolithic sandstones having a late Oligocene age
(Q16 F24 L60; Critelli, 1993), having basaltic and andesitic fragments,
reflect climax of activity of the Sardinia volcanic arc during its initial
volcanism (late Oligocene, 32–30 Ma; Critelli, 1993). Huge volumes of
volcanolithic turbidite sandstones occur in the Tufiti di Tusa Formation
(up to 300 m in thickness), early Miocene in age, at the top of the Sicilide Complex. Volcanolithic strata of the Tufiti di Tusa (Q14 F28 L58)
include syneruptive (e.g. Critelli and Ingersoll, 1995; Marsaglia et al.,
2016) sandstones, recording climax of volcanic activity of the calcalkaline magmatic arc (Critelli et al., 1990b; Fornelli and Piccarreta,
1997; Perri et al., 2012a). The volcanic detritus includes abundant
microlitic to felsitic seriate volcanic texture testifing an andesite and
basaltic andesite composition of the volcanic debris (Critelli et al.,
1990b; Perri et al., 2012a). The turbidites consist of reworked ash-falls
that contain abundant grains characterized by vitric textures, glass
shards and single neovolcanic minerals of hornblende, pyroxene and
euhedral plagioclase. Mixing provenance from the active volcanic
source and the crystalline sources of the Calabrian terranes are interbedded to the top of the Sicilide complex, forming distinct early Miocene siliciclastic turbidite systems having sand compositions ranging
from volcanolithic (Tufiti di Tusa Formation; Critelli et al., 1990b; Perri
et al., 2012a; Puglisi, 2014) to quartzolithic (Albanella, Corleto and
Colle Cappella Formations) (Critelli et al., 1994; Fornelli and
Piccarreta, 1997; Critelli and Le Pera, 1998; Perri et al., 2012a). Other
early Miocene volcaniclastic strata are interbedded with quartzose
sandstone strata and shallow-water carbonates along the carbonate
platform sequences of the Adria margins (e.g. Perrone, 1987) and the
deep-sea Lagonegro basin (Pieri and Rapisardi, 1973; Pescatore et al.,
1988; Critelli, 1991, 1999; Patacca et al., 1992).
4.6.2. Volcanolithic sandstone petrofacies
The volcanolithic sandstones (Qt14 ± 6 F28 ± 15 L58 ± 13; C3e
in Table 1) are mostly confined in the Tufiti di Tusa Formation of the
Sicilian Maghrebian and the southern Apennines, and the Bisciaro
Formation in the northern Apennines, and detritus is dominantly derived from coeval andesitic volcanism. The source area for the volcanolithic sandstone petrofacies is suggested from the active volcanic
region exposed in western Sardinia (e.g. Critelli et al., 2011, 2013,
2017).
4.7. Forearc region (Late Oligocene-earliest Miocene)
The forearc region of the eastern Tethys subduction is inferred to be
located over the Mesomediterranean microplate located between the
active magmatic arc (Sardinia) to the west, and the subduction complex
(Lucanian Ocean), to the east.
4.7.1. Quartzofeldspathic sandstone petrofacies
Over the Paleozoic-Mesozoic block of the Calabrian terranes unconformably overly the siliciclastic strata of the early Miocene StiloCapo d'Orlando, Paludi and Frazzanò formations. These three clastic
sequences have dominantly turbidite sandstone strata that have a
general quartzofeldspathic composition (Qt55 F36 L9), reflecting close
provenances from the Paleozoic plutonic and metamorphic rocks of the
Calabrian terranes (i.e. Aspromonte, Stilo and Sila units; Cavazza and
Ingersoll, 2005).
4.7.2. Quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies
Over and at the front of the Mesomediterranean microplate, other
clastic units include the Ciudad Granada Formation in the Betic
Cordillera and the Fnideq Formation in the Rif Chain (e.g. Puglisi et al.,
2001; Martín-Algarra et al., 2000). These sandstone units differ in
composition with respect the quartzofeldspathic sandstones of the StiloCapo d'Orlando, Paludi and Frazzanò formations, and they mark a
quartzolithic sandstone suite, more quartzose for the Fnideq Formation
of northern Rif Chain (Qt81 ± 6 F7 ± 4 L12 ± 6), and more lithic for
the Ciudad Granada Formation (Qt41 ± 7 F4 ± 5 L55 ± 8). The
Fnideq sandstones have abundant low-grade metamorphic detritus
closely related to a provenance from the Ghomaride and Malaguide
units of the Rif and Betic chains, while the Ciudad Granada Formation
includes also clasts in conglomerate strata interbedded with sandstones
of high-grade metamorphic and plutonic rocks that have been inferred
to derive from units that are exposed nowday in the Calabrian terranes
(i.e. Aspromonte and Stilo units; see Martín-Algarra et al., 2000 for
furter details).
4.6. Maghrebian Basin
The Maghrebian basin includes a late Cretaceous to earliest Miocene
pelagic successions of varicoloured mudstones, including marl, limestone and claystone, and since earliest Miocene (Aquitanian to
Burdigalian) by several deep-marine siliciclastic turbidite systems that
have been subdivided into several lithostratigraphic units. The arrival
of siliciclastic turbidite systems, within the Maghrebian Basin, indicates
the closure of the oceanic realm and the accretionary processes of the
internal domains (Mesomediterranean microplate) overthrusting over
the Adria, African and Iberian continental margins. From western to
eastern these siliciclastic units include (Table 1): (i) the Viñuela and
Algeciras formations in the Betic Cordillera, (ii) the Sidi Abdesslam and
Beni Ider formations (Puglisi et al., 2001; Zaghloul et al., 2002; Puglisi,
2008), in the Rif Chain, (iii) the Reitano, Tufiti di Tusa, Troina sandstone, Poggio Maria, Frazzanò formations in Sicily (de Capoa et al.,
2002; Puglisi, 2008, 2014), and (iv) the Corleto Perticara, Albanella,
Colle Cappella and Tufiti di Tusa formations in southern Apennines
(Critelli et al., 1990b; Critelli et al., 1994; Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a,
1998; Fornelli and Piccarreta, 1997).
4.8. Betic cordillera Foreland Basin system
The thrust tectonics and the alpine metamorphism of the Betic
terranes is in response of continental collision (Guerrera and MartínMartín, 2014) of the Mesomediterranean microplate with the South
Iberian continental margin involving the Nevado-Filabride oceanic
branch (subducted below the Mesomediterranean microplate) (e.g.,
Perrone et al., 2006; Critelli et al., 2008; Perri et al., 2013, 2017). The
Malaguide and Alpujarride complexes were related to the Kabylian and
Calabrian Internal units, and all of them constituted the southern part
of the Mesomediterranean microplate (Martín-Martín et al., 2006) to
the N of the Maghrebian Basin (e.g., Bouillin, 1986; Guerrera et al.,
4.6.1. Quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies
Sandstone suites of the Maghrebian sedimentary units include
dominantly quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies (Qt58 ± 12 F15
± 9 L27 ± 13; this mean and standard deviation is a regional scale
from C3a to C3j excluding C3e in Table 1). Quartzolithic sandstones
have dominantly metasedimentary detritus from low-to-medium grade
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4.9. Rif chain (Morocco) foreland basin system
2005; El Talibi et al., 2014; Perri et al., 2017 and references therein).
This basin separated the Mesosediterranean microplate broke off, which
caused the western Mediterranean basins to form during the Miocene
(Critelli et al., 2008; Guerrera and Martín-Martín, 2014; Guerrera et al.,
2015; Perri et al., 2017). The Mesomediterranean microplate had previously formed a laterally continuous orogenic belt (e.g. Bouillin, 1986;
Guerrera et al., 1993).
Compositional signatures of Paleocene to Burdigalian sandstones of
the stratigraphic cover of the Malaguide Complex constrain the tectonic
history of the orogenic accretionary processes and related Betic
Cordillera foreland basin system. The Paleocene to Lower Miocene
succession of the Sierra Espuña area is made up of several formations
evolving from continental and shallow marine, to deep marine environments (e.g. Perri et al., 2017 and bibliography therein). The succession is divided into (i) pre-orogenic depositional sequences, including the Paleocene Mula Formation, the Cuisian-Early Lutetian
Espuña and the Valdelaparra formations, the Middle Lutetian-Priabonian Malvariche and the Canovas formations, and the Early Oligocene
As Formation; (ii syn-orogenic depositional sequences, including the
Late Oligocene-Aquitanian deltaic to shallow-marine strata of the the
Bosque Formation, and deep-marine strata of the Rio Pliego Formation,
and the Burdigalian p.p. deep-marine strata of the El Niño Formation,
the latter as a part of the Viñuela Group (Perri et al., 2017 and bibliography therein).
The Rif Chain is the western end of the Maghrebian Chain (with
together the Tell and large portions of Sicily) and, together with the
Betics, forms the main Alpine orocline of the western and central
Mediterranean Sea (Durand-Delga, 1980; Durand-Delga and Fontboté,
1980). The foreland basin system of the Rif Chain is mainly located
within the Intra-Rif and Meso-Rif of the External domain. The external
domain is represented by a Triassic-Tertiary sedimentary succession,
originated from the African paleomargin. Since the Early Miocene the
northern Africa continental margin experienced flexural features due to
progressive tectonic load of the nappe stack of the deformed southern
Tethyan realm (Maghrebian basin) and the Mesomediterranean microplate (internal domains of Ghomaride and Sebtide and Dorsale
Calcaire) and the margin has been progressively involved in a foreland
basin system filled by turbidite systems.
4.10. Quartzarenite petrofacies
Since the Oligocene the external domain was filled by huge arrival
of quartzose sediments from the African Craton, and several turbiditic
successions have a quartzarenite composition. The quartzose sandstones include the Tanger Unit of the Intra-Rif (Zaghloul et al., 2005),
the Numidian Sandstone (Moretti et al., 1991; Thomas et al., 2010), the
Asilah (Cazzola and Critelli, 1987), Larache, Zoumi, Ouezzane sandstone formations of the Habt and Ouezzane thrust units of the Intra-Rif
nappe (e.g. Wildi, 1983; Zaghloul et al., 2005 and bibliography
therein). All these units are deep-marine turbidite systems, while
shallow-marine to continental quartzarenite strata are not evident in
Mesorif and pre-Rif, while in the Tunisia, fluvio-deltaic quartzarenite
systems are present (i.e. the Fortuna Formation; Van Houten, 1980;
Thomas et al., 2010). The Numidian quartzarenites as such as other
quartzose strata represent the major Cenozoic drainage system on the
entire northern Africa margin (e.g. Thomas et al., 2010). At regional
scale and correlations, the Numidian event is well represented in Sicily
(Wezel, 1970; Barbera et al., 2013), and the southern Apennines
(known as Numidian Flysch and the Bifurto Formation; Carbone et al.,
1987; Patacca et al., 1992; Fornelli, 1998, Fornelli et al., 2015).
4.8.1. Preorogenic Betic hybrid and quartzose sandstone petrofacies
Pre-orogenic strata are hybrid arenites (e.g. Zuffa, 1980) including
abundant coeval intrabasinal carbonate and extrabasinal carbonate
grains. The siliciclastic signals are present in the lower layers of the
Espuña Formation (NCE38CI62CE0; Qm96F0Lt4), and it continues to
increases with the As Formation (NCE51CI2CE47; Qm92F0Lt8), as well
as extrabasinal carbonate grains, although the composition always is
quartzarenite (Perri et al., 2017). Compositional data indicate that the
Tertiary succession had their multiple source areas derived from metamorphic, siliciclastic and carbonate rocks, with a minor supply of
mafic rocks. The siliciclastic samples are mature (i.e. Espuña Formation, Qm96F0Lt4; As Fm: Qm92F0Lt8) and indicate a clear provenance
from a craton interior area.
5. Key provenance relations of sandstones during growing (late
Oligocene-Pliocene) circum-Mediterranean Orogen
4.8.2. Rio Pliego- El Niño quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies
Sandstone detrital modes for the syn-orogenic cycle abruptly
changed from carbonate-rich to siliciclastic rocks. The onset of increasing siliciclastic content occurs in the upper part of the Bosque
Formation and the Rio Pliego Formation. Sandstones of the Rio Pliego
Formation are quartzolithic (Qm56F0Lt44), in lower portions, with
phyllite, slate and fine-grained schist, while sedimentary lithic fragments are minor; sandstones of the upper portions of the Rio Pliego
Formation are also quartzolithic (Qm26F0Lt 74) having variable extrabasinal non-carbonate (NCE) versus carbonate CE) grains with a
general dominance of siliciclastic content (NCE73 CI1CE26). Similarly,
they have variable sedimentary and carbonate versus metamorphic
lithic fragments (average value; Lm41Lss29Lsc30; Rg0Rs55Rm45) with
a slight dominance of metamorphic grains. The Burdigalian p.p. El Niño
Formation, contains fine-medium grained quartzolithic sandstones
(Qm61F0Lt39) with significant extrabasinal carbonate grains
(NCE64CI0CE36) (Perri et al., 2017). In terms of provenance relations,
the onset of the syn-orogenic cycle (Bosque Formation) is marked by a
continuous carbonate detrital supply coming from erosion of older
Malaguide Mesozoic-Paleogene formations that began to uplift. The
sharp increase of the siliciclastic component in the Rio Pliego and El
Niño formations testifies abrupt changes of the source area involving
the Paleozoic to Mesozoic metamorphic, carbonate and terrigenous
rocks of the internal domains (Malaguide and Alpujarride complexes)
and neighbor domains as suggested by abundance of slate, phyllite and
metarenite, extrabasinal carbonate grains in sandstone strata (Perri
et al., 2017).
5.1. Cratonal (African)-derived collisional sandstones
During the final closure of the southern and eastern Tethyan realm
and onset of accretionary processes, the northern Africa continental
margin experienced intense flexural features of the continental lithospere. Since late Eocene, enormous quantities of cratonic derived sandstones widespread accumulated along the various sedimentary basins
confined between the African plate and the Iberian, Mesomediterranean
and Adria microplates. Tertiary quartzose clastic wedges are clearly
derived from African plate, and these clastic wedges include huge volumes of dominantly deep-marine quartzarenite turbidite systems deposited along the flexed flank of the northern Africa continental margin
(Table 1; Fig. 6). It includes Eocene through early Miocene turbidite
systems of the Meso-Rif and External Rif Nappe domains of the Rif
Chain in Morocco (Chiocchini et al., 1978; Cazzola and Critelli, 1987;
Puglisi, 2008, 2014), in the Malaguide Complex of the Betic Cordillera
(Mula, Espuña and As formations; Perri et al., 2017), the widespread
turbidite system of the Numidian Sandstone Formation (formally Numidian Flysch; Thomas et al., 2010; Guerrera et al., 2012; Alcalá et al.,
2013; Barbera et al., 2014; and bibliography therein), the Algeciras
Formation of the Gibraltar Arc and the fluvio-deltaic system of the
Fortuna Formation and Nubian Sandstones of the Tell Chain represent a
key regional scale lithosome (Qt94 F3 L3; see Table 2) of the circumMediterranean orogen. In the southern Apennines, equivalent
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more felsic (dacite, rhyodacite and rhyolite); these latter volcaniclastic
strata are within the Apennines foreland basin system (Cilento Group,
Castelvetere and Anzano formations; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994, 1995b;
Critelli, 1999; Critelli et al., 2017; Barone et al., 2006; Matano et al.,
2014 and in the synrift peri-Tyrrhenian backarc basins (e.g. Critelli
et al., 2011, 2017). The late Miocene volcaniclastic strata seems to be
not related to the previous Oligo-Miocene magmatism of Sardinia that
was dissected at the end of Miocene, and other volcanic sources are
inferred as the central Tyrrhenian volcanic arc (e.g. Argnani et al.,
1995; Serri et al., 2001).
sedimentary sequences of the Numidian quartzarenite occur during the
early stage of foreland basin system evolution within the foredeep, the
flexed forebulge (Bifurto Formation covering the Mesozoic to early
Miocene shallow-marine carbonate platforms) and back-bulge (Lagonegro Basin) depozones (Patacca et al., 1992; Critelli and Le Pera,
1995a; Fornelli, 1998; Critelli, 1999; Critelli et al., 2013, 2017; Fornelli
et al., 2015).
5.2. Recycled Orogen sandstones
Sandstones derived from accretionary terranes related to collisional
processes are widespread all along the various sedimentary basins of
the circum-Mediterranean region during closure of remnant ocean
realms and subsequent continental collision, from Betic Cordillera to
the Rif-Tell and Apennines. One of the most intriguing and contrasting
example of foreland basin systems having differentiated recycled orogenic provenances is the Apennines foreland basin system, where clear
provenance from Alpine Chain to the north (e.g. Gandolfi et al., 1983;
Valloni and Zuffa, 1984; Cibin et al., 2001; Stalder et al., 2018), and the
Mesomediterranean microplate, to the west and southwest (Critelli and
Le Pera, 1995a, 1998; Critelli et al., 2007, 2013, 2017; Amendola et al.,
2016) are alternate and interfingered together, particularly during
early-middle Miocene and Late Miocene (Fig. 6). The Betic and RifTellian foreland basin systems are filled by shallow-to-deep-marine
clastic sequences reflecting provenance relations from stable flexed
continental margins of African craton and Iberian continental block,
and from the accreted thrusted terranes of the internal domains of Betic
Cordillera in Spain and Rif-Tell Belt in Morocco and Algeria.
5.4. Map 4. Langhian-early Tortonian foreland basin systems
5.4.1. Apennines foreland basin system
The Apennines foreland region preserve clastic wedges with contrasting and mixed petrofacies in which the key provenance terranes are
coming from the Alps, at its northern edge, from the Sardinia-Corsica
block, at its western edge, and from the eastern margin of the
Mesomediterranean microplate (mainly the Calabrian terranes) at its
western and southwestern and southern edge. Additional provenances
of foreland sandstones are from the progressively deformed Adria
continental margin, and the active volcanism in the central
Mediterranean region since the late Oligocene (e.g., Critelli, 1999;
Critelli et al., 2013, 2017).
Since early Miocene, the Apenninic domain is the place where huge
volume of turbiditic sedimentation were deposited in response of E-NE
accretionary processes along the Adria plate (e.g. Ricci Lucchi, 1986;
Patacca and Scandone, 1987; Boccaletti et al., 1990). The foreland
basin system (i.e. wedge-top, foredeep, forebulge, back-bulge depozones) migrated in time, and siliciclastic and carbonatoclastic deposits,
filling the wedge-top and the foredeep, derived from progressive unroofing of crustal blocks of Alps, Sardinia-Corsica and Mesomediterranean microplate (mainly Calabrian terranes) or from erosion of
the Adria forebulge (e.g. Critelli, 1999).
Final closure of the eastern Tethyan ocean (Lucanian ocean basin)
and onset of continental collision in the southern Apennines are dated
as early Miocene (Burdigalian). The provenance of the detrital constituents of the Miocene foreland sandstones was dominantly from the
eastern continental margin of the Mesomediterranean microplate
(Calabrian terranes), the active growing front of the fold-thrust belt
(Fig. 7).
The key sources of clastics deposited within the foreland basin
system include different present-day realms that are: (a) the basement
rocks of the northern Calabrian Terranes. Initial signals of provenance
from the Calabrian terranes are during final closure of the Lucanian
Ocean (Saraceno Formation); (b) the uplifted subduction complex (the
Lucanian Oceanic terranes), during the mid-late Miocene; (c) the
Mesozoic to Tertiary Apulia/Adria basinal and carbonate platform domains. Since Langhian time, elongate turbidite basins have formed on
top of advancing thrust-sheet systems. The Cilento Group, Serra
Palazzo, Piaggine, San Giorgio and Gorgoglione formations (Amore
et al., 1988; Patacca et al., 1990, 1993; Castellano et al., 1997; Critelli
et al., 2011) are the main turbiditic successions of the wedge-top and
foredeep depozones in growing foreland basin system, confined between the Mesomediterranean microplate and the Adria forebulge
(Fig. 8).
Critelli and Le Pera (1994, 1995, 1998) and Critelli et al. (2011,
2013, 2017) discuss in detail the sandstone detrital mode evolution
during initial stage of filling of the southern Apennines foreland basin
system defining diverse petrofacies since early Langhian with deposition of the Cilento Group basin in the inner portions of the frontal
orogen, and the Piaggine sandstone, the Gorgoglione and San Giorgio
formations accomodated in wedge-top and foredeep depozones during
Serravallian to early Tortonian. Three main regional sandstone suites
(petrofacies) are defined to infer the regional paleotectonics of accretionary processes in the southern Apennines foreland evolution.
5.3. Magmatic Arc-derived sandstones
Within the Mediterranean region magmatic activity is weadspread
since Oligocene and it is mainly subdivided into orogenic and anorogenic magmatic provinces (Serri et al., 2001; Lustrino and Wilson,
2007; Caracciolo et al., 2011). Volcanolithic sandstone suites occur in
the circum-Mediterranean region mainly during the late Oligocene,
early Miocene, the middle-to-late Miocene and early Pliocene. Occurrence of volcaniclastic layers post early Pliocene is not the subject of
this paper and therefore are not discussed here. Volcanolithic sandstones are present during subduction and final closure of the eastern
and southern Tethyan oceanic realm generating a Late Oligocene-early
Miocene magmatic arc (e.g. Malinverno and Ryan, 1986; Dewey et al.,
1989). Remnants of magmatic arc platform are in western Sardinia (e.g.
Assorgia et al., 1997) and in the subsurface of the peri-Adriatic region
(e.g. Cibin et al., 2001; Di Capua et al., 2016; Di Capua and Groppelli,
2016, and bibliography therein). The magmatic activity during tha late
Oligocene-early Miocene is responsible of accomodation of volcanolithic (mainly andesitic) sandstones within the tectonic mélange of the
Lucanian Ocean (e.g. Critelli, 1993, 1999; Critelli et al., 2017), the
Taveyanne Sandstones in the Alpine foreland basin (Di Capua and
Groppelli, 2016), the Petrignacola (Qt7 F48 L45; Valloni and Zuffa,
1984) and Val d'Aveto (Di Capua et al., 2016; Mattioli et al., 2012)
formations of sub-ligurian basin of northern Apennines, a northern
extension of the Lucanian ocean basin. These sedimentary successions
are late Oligocene in age and are interpreted to be derived from the
active magmatic arc of Sardinia and Periadriatic volcanic centers
(Critelli, 1993; Cibin et al., 2001; Di Capua and Groppelli, 2016; Di
Capua et al., 2016). Volcanolithic (andesitic) sandstones are also present in the early Miocene (Burdigalian to Langhian), particularly in the
southern Apennines and Sicily in the Tufti di Tusa, Troina-Tusa and
Poggio Maria formations (e.g. Ogniben, 1964; Critelli et al., 1990b; de
Capoa et al., 2002; Puglisi, 2014), and as isolated volcanolithic layers
interbedded with shallow-marine carbonate platform strata (Perrone,
1987; Critelli, 1999) or pelagic sequences (e.g. Bisciaro Formation;
Guerrera et al., 2015). Other occurrence of volcaniclastic strata are in
the middle and late Miocene, and composition of volcanic debris is
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Fig. 7. Paleotectonic map 4 for the Langhian to early
Tortonian time, showing onset of accretion of the
Mesomediterranean microplate over the Adria
margin to form ancestral Apennines. Foreland basin
system includes the diverse depozones (according to
DeCelles and Giles, 1996) filled by the main clastic
wedges of the Cilento Group, Piaggine sandstone,
Numidian Sandstone, during Langhian to Serravallian, and the Gorgoglione, Monte Sacro, Nocara,
Oriolo, San Giorgio and Serra Palazzo formations,
during Serravallian to early Tortonian. Location of
the Sardinia magmatic arc that was yet active during
Langhian-Serravallian. Adapted after Patacca and
Scandone (1987), Patacca et al., (1990, 1993), and
Critelli et al. (2011, 2013, 2017). Sandstone suites
related to the Map 4 with QtFL diagram include the
quartzolithofeldspathic sandstone of the Cilento
Group, quartzolithic sandstone of the Piaggine Formation (detritus mainly derived from the oceanic
terranes) and following Gorgoglione, Monte Sacro,
Oriolo, Serra Palazzo, San Giorgio formations.
Quartzose suites are referred to the Numidian sandstones, as such as volcanolithic sandstones are interbedded within the Cilento Group. Dotted polygons
are referred to the closure of the eastern/southern
Tethyan realm. Shifting of detrital modes suggest
onset of unroofing history of the Calabrian terranes.
metamorphic detritus (Rg9 ± 6 Rs4 ± 3 Rm87 ± 10) in the lower
Cilento Group (Pollica Formation) to abrupt increases of phaneritic
plutonic detritus (Rg54 ± 10 Rs3 ± 2 Rm43 ± 10) in the middle and
upper Cilento Group (San Mauro Formation) (e.g. Critelli and Le Pera,
1994, 1998; Critelli et al., 2017). In addition to siliciclastic turbidite
beds, the Cilento Group includes numerous carbonatoclastic megabeds
(ranging from few meters to 65 m thick; Colella and Zuffa, 1988;
Cieszkowski et al., 1995; Critelli, 1999), olistostrome beds (ranging
from tens to hundreds of meters in thickness), and coarse volcaniclastic
debris flows and turbidites. Olistostroma beds are siliciclastics, and
include mountain-sized blocks of crystalline rocks of the Calabrian
5.4.2. Langhian
to
early
Tortonian
quartzofeldspatholitic/
quartzofeldspathic sandstone petrofacies
Corresponds with deposition of the Cilento Group (Pollica, San
Mauro and Albidona formations; Langhian-early Tortonian), and the
San Giorgio and Serra Palazzo (Langhian-early Tortonian). At regional
scale sandstones of these formations are quartzo-feldspatholitic
(Qt62 ± 5 F26 ± 5 L12 ± 4; Lm47 ± 11 Lv24 ± 8 Ls29 ± 7;
Rg37 ± 8 Rs18 ± 6 Rm4 ± 10), even if in spite of general homogeneous composition, changing nature of detrital signatures are evident
during stratigraphic evolution. Particularly in the Cilento Group, detrital supplies changes abruptly from abundance of low-medium
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Fig. 8. Paleotectonic map 5 for the Late Tortonian to
early Pliocene time, showing eastward shifting of the
souuthern Italy orogenic belt deforming and assembling portions of the Adria margin and new location
of the foreland basin system. To the west, the
Sardinia magmatic arc was dissected to become a
remnant arc, due to the onset of rifting of the
Tyrrhenian Sea, including syn-rift clastic wedges in
the peri-Tyrrhenian area. A new magmatic arc (the
central Tyrrhenic magmatic arc) was inferred to be
present. Adapted after Patacca and Scandone (1987),
Patacca et al. (1990, 1993), Argnani et al. (1995),
and Critelli et al. (2011, 2013, 2017). Sandstone
suites related to the Map 5 with QtFL diagram include quartzofeldspathic sandstones of the selected
foreland clastic wedges on the inner wedge-top over
the Calabrian terranes (Crotone and Rossano basins),
outer wedge-top depozone (San Bartolomeo, Nocara,
Tempa del Prato, Civita and Sorrendstone formations) and within the late Miocene (Castelvetere,
Agnone, Anzano-Altavilla) and early-middle Pliocene (Baronia and Sferracavallo synthems) foredeep
depozone. Within the inner wedge-top, an Apenninic
backthrust (Cariati Nappe; Muto et al., 2014) was
accomodated. The QtFL diagram includes previous
foreland clastic wedges, and the Late TortonianPliocene foreland, and Late Miocene synrift wedges
(Perityrrhenian basins) detrital modes. The arrow,
testifies the progressive unroofing history of the fold
and thrust belt.
limestone and radiolarian chert, mixed with metmorphic detritus in the
quartzolithic sandstone testified the obduction and erosion of the accreted oceanic terranes of the oceanic suites.
terranes and ophiolitiferous rocks of the Lucanian oceanic terranes. The
volcaniclastic interval in the lower San Mauro Formation is interbedded
with quartzofeldspatholitic sandstones, and includes abundant felsic
(rhyodacite to rhyolite) calcalkaline volcanic particles (Critelli and Le
Pera, 1994).
The Serra Palazzo (Qt61 ± 4 F29 ± 5 L10 ± 3) and the San
Giorgio (Qt57 ± 5 F34 ± 5 Lt9 ± 3; Matano et al., 2014) formations,
interpreted as the foredeep basin of the Langhian to Serravallian
(Tortonian?) southern Apennines foreland region (Patacca et al., 1990)
have quartzofeldspathic sandstones, hybrid arenite and calcarenite,
suggesting provenance from both thrust belt and forebulge.
5.4.4. Early Tortonian quartzofeldspathic sandstone petrofacies
Corresponds with the Gorgoglione, Monte Sacro, Oriolo and Nocara
Conglomerate formations (Selli, 1957, 1962; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994,
Critelli and Le Pera, 1995a, 1995b), unconformably covering the deformed oceanic terranes and the Cilento Group, representing the
wedge-top depozone sequences of the Tortonian foreland basin system
of southern Apennines. Sandstones are quartzofeldspathic (Qt55 ±
5 F38 ± 5 L7 ± 3) having similar provenance to that of the upper
Cilento Group, San Giorgio and Serra Palazzo sandstones. This petrofacies with together the Langhian-Tortonian quartzofeldspatholitic
petrofacies record accretionary processes and initial unroofing of the
crystalline terranes of the Calabrian terrane.
5.4.3. Serravallian to early Tortonian quartzolithic sandstone petrofacies
A local Serravallian to early Tortonian quartzolithic petrofacies
occurs in the Piaggine Sandstone Formation (Q52 F18 L30). Abundance
of serpentinite, serpentine schist, metabasalt, and pelagic calpionellid
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The Castelvetere, Agnone and the Altavilla-Anzano sandstones are
deposited within the foredeep depozone and detrital modes are plutonic-rich, with up-section increases of sedimentary detritus (Critelli
and Le Pera, 1995b). The Castelvetere Formation has a thick olistostrome bed in the basal portions, including mountain-block carbonate
olistoliths (Cocco et al., 1974; Critelli and Le Pera, 1995b; Critelli,
1999) that record involvement of the Langhian to Tortonian passive
margin (e.g., the inner platform domain) within the thrust belt (Critelli,
1999). Sedimentary detritus is carbonate dominant in the lower Castelvetere; upsection, increases of siliciclastic detritus suggests progressive erosion of older clastic wedges. Interbedded with quartzofeldspathic turbidite sandstone, the upper Castelvetere has a thick
olistostrome bed (Cocco et al., 1974), composed of clastic detritus derived from the oceanic complex, and a 1 m-thick volcaniclastic layer.
The siliciclastic olistostroma may be the signal of the synthrust accomodation of the deformed oceanic terranes. The syneruptive volcaniclastic layer consists of pyroclast fragments (pumice and shards)
having felsic composition (dacite) (Critelli and Le Pera, 1995b). Other
volcaniclastic layers are interbedded in other foredeep sandstone suites
as the Anzano-Altavilla unit (Barone et al., 2006; and it is testified
within the post-evaporitic Laga Formation (Corda and Morelli, 1996),
and in synrift basins of the peri-Tyrrhenian region (i.e. Amantea Basin;
Muto et al., 2015; Critelli et al., 2017). The volcanic centers of these ash
turbidites is unknown, even if the inferred central Tyrrhenian volcanic
arc (e.g. Argnani et al., 1995) may be a possible source.
The Calabrian terranes represent the key source areas to supplies
huge volumes of siliciclastic detritus to the foreland region and other
related sedimentary basins of southern Apennines (Fig. 9). Since early
Tortonian, backarc rifting has produced the Tyrrhenian Sea (Scandone,
1982). At this time, the western margin of Calabria was affected by
detachment causing tectonic denudation (Fig. 9). Syn-rift basins of the
western Calabria, and the inner (Barone et al., 2008; Tripodi et al.,
2013; Brutto et al., 2016) to the outer foreland basin system have
identical detrital modes, plotting within ideal arkose or continental
block provenance field (e.g., Dickinson, 1985, 1988) (Fig. 9), in response of major changes in uplift rate in the northern Calabrian terranes
(Critelli, 1999).
Miocene foreland sandstone suites of the circum-Mediterranean
orogenic belt suggest close interplay of lithospheric flexure, thrust accomodation, exhumation and unroofing histories during plate interactions. A key rule has played the Mesomediterranean microplate in
forming the tectonic load for developing foreland basin systems in the
southern Iberian margin (Betic Cordillera), the African margin (Rif and
Tell) and the Adria margin (Apennines). However, differences in
sandstone suites between these diverse foreland basin systems testify
differences in accretionary processes, exhumation and uplift of differentiate portions of crust involved during the accretion of the
Mesomediterranean microplate. Foreland sandstone suites are quite
different in composition, suggesting that three main suites are typically
(Fig. 10): (i) quartzolithic, for the Betic foreland basin system, involving
in thrusting low level of crustal terranes as source areas; (ii) quartzarenite, for the northern Africa (Rif and Tell) foreland basin system,
where great influence of the African craton deliveries huge volumes of
quartzose material to the basin, and (iii) quartzolithic-to-quartzofeldspathic, for the Apennines foreland basin system, involving in thrusting
deeper portions of crustal terranes and major exhumation and uplift
generating unroofing sequences of detrital modes in response of increasing tectonic load of the fold-thrust belt in time and space.
5.5. Maps 5 e 6. Late Miocene-early Pliocene foreland basin systems
The geodynamic evolution of the last 10 My, in the western-central
Mediterranean is named the Tyrrhenian phase (15–0 Ma). The
Tyrrhenian phase (or back-arc extension) was responsible for the
fragmentation and dispersion of pieces of the Mesomediterranean microplate (Calabria, Sardinia, Corsica), increased the displacement of the
accretionary prism over the Adria microplate, the eastward migration
of the magmatic arcs, and the roll-back of the adriatic lithosphere
(Malinverno and Ryan, 1986; Patacca et al., 1990, 1993; Argnani et al.,
1995; Doglioni et al., 1996; Gueguen et al., 1998, 1997). The Tyrrhenian backarc basin migrated eastwards (northeastwards in the
northern Apennines and southeastwards in Calabria and Sicily) at velocities of up to 5–7 cm/yr (Doglioni, 1991; Gueguen et al., 1998). Since
late Tortonian an abruptly shift in sandstone composition toward arkose or continental-block derived sandstone occurs, suggesting deep
erosional processes that affected the Mesomediterranean microplate,
and particularly the Calabrian terranes (Fig. 8) (e.g. Critelli and Le Pera,
1998; Caracciolo et al., 2013). In spite of the huge volumes of midcrustal rock detritus, significant contributions are coming from the
eroded sedimentary systems of the deformed portions of the Adria
margin, both shallow-marine carbonates and deep-marine pelagic
strata. The history of deep erosion of the Calabrian terranes is clearly
recorded by Tortonian to Messinian clastics (Fig. 8). These foreland
sedimentary sequences include (i) inner wedge-top depozones, directly
over the Calabrian block, including the peri-ionian Rossano and Crotone basins (Barone et al., 2008; Zecchin et al., 2012, 2013a, 2013b;
Muto et al., 2014, 2015) and allochthonous terranes (the Cariati Nappe,
a backthrust of late Tortonian age, related to the middle Miocene accretionary phases that created the Foreland Basin system at the intersection of southern Apennines-Calabrian terrane; e.g. Muto et al., 2014,
2015), (ii) outer wedge-top depozones, directly over deformed oceanic
terranes, previous foreland strata and the Adria margin domains, including shallow-to deep marine deltaic and turbidite sandstones of the
Anzano and San Bartolomeo, Argilloso-Arenacea, Frosinone, Brecce
della Renga; (iii) foredeep depozone, at the front of the late Messinianearly Pliocene orogenic wedge, including turbidite systems of the Castelvetere, Agnone, Vallone Ponticello and Villanova del Battista and
Torrente Fiumarella formations, and more northward the Laga Formation (e.g. Corda and Morelli, 1996; Stalder et al., 2018, and bibliography therein) and related sequences in wedge-top basins (Chiocchini
and Cipriani, 1989, 1992). A key arkosic sandstone petrofacies summarize the late Miocene-early Pliocene filling of the southern Apennines foreland basin system.
5.5.1. Late Miocene arkosic petrofacies
Since late Tortonian, the Calabrian terranes have provided abundant detritus to both the foreland region and intermontane basins of the
backarc region (Fig. 9); the previous forebulge of the inner platform
domain, were assembled within the fold-thrust-belt, and the new forebulge of the foreland basin system might be located on the inner Apulia
platform (Monte Alpi Unit; Patacca et al., 1992; Critelli et al., 2017). On
the fold-thrust belt, arkosic sandstone strata unconformably overlain
the deformed tectonostratigraphic terranes of the southern Apennines
orogenic belt (e.g. Patacca et al., 1992; Critelli and Le Pera, 1998;
Critelli et al., 2017). These arkosic strata crop out over the Calabrian
block, with deposition of evaporitic and post-evaporitic strata (e.g.
Barone et al., 2008; Zecchin et al., 2013a, 2013b), the previous foreland
clastic wedges and pelagic units (San Bartolomeo, Sorrento, Vallone
Ponticello and Villanova del Battista formations; Patacca et al., 1990,
1992, 1993; Barone et al., 2006; Matano et al., 2014; Critelli et al.,
2017) and over the inner platform unit (Tempa del Prato Sandstone and
Civita Sandstone), and include abundant plutonic and high-grade metamorphic detritus, as such as extrabasinal carbonate detritus.
6. Modern Mediterranean sand analogues to ancient circumMediterranean sandstones
Modern geodynamic setting, regional geomorphology and sediment
dispersal pathways of the Mediterranean Sea as reflected by
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Fig. 9. Paleotectonic map 6 for the late Messinin-early Pliocene, overlapping with previous Map 5, showing the entire filling and provenance relations of the
Apennine foreland basin system, with detrital supply coming from both the Alps, for the northern Adriatic foreland clastic wedges (the Laga Formation and the
previous Marnoso-Arenacea Formation), and from the Mesomediterranean microplate, for the southern and central Apennine foreland clastic wedges. On he top right
of figure, a detail of the tectono-stratigraphic relations of western and eastern Calabria, with evolving Perityrrhenian basin (to the west) and the Peri-ionian basin to
the east. Adapted after Barone et al. (2008), Muto et al. (2014, 2015) and Critelli et al. (2011, 2017). Sandstone suites relate to the map 6 with QtFL diagram shows
quite homogeneous detrital modes for both Perityrrhenian synrift basins and Peri-ionian and Apennine foreland clasti wedges. Previous discussed sandstone suites are
plotted as filled circle, with indication of stratigraphic boundaries times (regional unconformities), while the arrow testifies the general trend of changing nature of
composition related to the unroofing history of the fold and thrust belt.
intersect the dispersal pathways and sand delivery in a “Eurotype”
composite continent, mixed with “Afrotype” rifting continent (e.g.
Dickinson, 1988).
composition of modern sand, may offer great opportunity for better
understanding ancient analogues and regional sandstone suites. The
Mediterranean region, in the framework of megageomorphology
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collisional events. Sedimentary basins of the circum-Mediterranean
orogenic belt contain voluminous sandstones within (i) rifted-continental belt of the Tethyan oceanic realms, (ii) subduction-related
basins during the Late Mesozoic-Paleogene closure of the western and
northern Tethyan oceanic realm, and Late Paleogene-earliest Miocene
closure of the southern and eastern Tethyan oceanic realm; (iii) foreland region of growing circum-Mediterranean orogenic belt of the Betic
Cordillera, Rif-Tell belt and the Apennines. Sandstone detrital modes,
provenance and dispersal pathway of sand of the large number of clastic
wedges during the complex evolution of the circum-Mediterranean
orogenic belt, have been integrated with paleotectonic and paleogeographic restorations to unraveal the major tectonic events during evolution of the Mediterranean-type orogens. Mesozoic-to-Pliocene sandstone suites are calibrated with major tectonic settings defining by
using test of classification (QtFL, QmFLt, QmKP, QpLvmLsm, LmLvLs,
NCeCeCi and RgRsRm) schemes (e.g. Dickinson et al., 1983; Dickinson,
1985; Ingersoll et al., 1984; Zuffa, 1985; Critelli and Le Pera, 1994) to
define regional sandstone petrofacies, as follow:
1 Mesozoic Rifted continental margin sequences related to the Tethys
Ocean taphrogenesis have significant quartzose sandstone suites
from terrestrial rift-valley to proto-oceanic syn-rift and post-rift
stages mainly related to peneplaned area of low relief all around the
nascent continental plates (Africa and Europe) and microplates
(Iberia and Mesomediterranean) and the diverse oceanic realms of
the Tethyan Ocean.
2 Late Mesozoic-to Early Paleogene closure of the western and
northern Tethyan oceanic realm accomodated quartzofeldspathic
and quartzolithic sandstone suites (e.g. Valloni and Zuffa, 1984) in
subducted-related basins preciding the Alpine orogen. The eastern
and southern Tethyan oceanic realm continued to receive quartzose
sandstone suites during the Cretaceous and early Paleogene (e.g.
Critelli, 1993; Barbera et al., 2011).
3 Late Paleogene-earliest Miocene closure of the eastern and southern
Tethyan oceanic realm is responsible of subduction-related sandstone suites within the tectonic mélange of the Lucanian Ocean (e.g.
Bonardi et al., 1988; Critelli, 1993), the onset of a calcalkaline
magmatic arc (Sardinian and Periadriatic volcanic centers; Assorgia
et al., 1997; Cibin et al., 2001), accretionary tectonics of the Mesomediterranean microplate over the Iberian, Africa and Adria
continental margins, and huge volumes of quartzolithic and volcanolithic sandstone suites derived from accreted Paleozoic metamorphic terranes and Mesozoic sedimentary strata (quartzolithic),
and active volcanic-arc source (volcanolithic).
4 Early-middle
Miocene
continental
accretion
of
the
Mesomediterranean microplate over (i) the Iberian margin, generating the Betic Cordillera; (ii) the Africa margin, generating the Rif
and Tell belt, and (iii) the Adria margin, generating the Apennines.
All these circum-Mediterranean belts generate distinctive foreland
basin systems. Accretionary processes of the deformed and obducted
southern and eastern Tethyan terranes and the Mesomediterranean
microplate accomodated huge volumes of mainly deep-marine turbidite sandstones in foreland basins. In the Betic Cordillera, sandstone suites are quartzolithic directly derived from the Malaguide
and Alpujarride tectonostratigraphic terranes. In the Rif and Tell
belt, huge flexural features of the African continental margin accomodated impressive volumes of quartzarenite turbidites to the
adjacent foreland basin, while quartzolithic sandstones are very
minor. In the Apennines, the fold-thrust belt was dominated by
growing accretionary processes of the Calabrian continental block
and other terranes of the eastern margin of the Mesomediterranean
microplate, representing the main source area of huge volumes of
quartzolithic and quartzofeldspathic and arkosic sandstone suites in
response of the unroofing history of the Calabrian terranes.
Fig. 10. QtFL diagram of sandstone suites for the circum-Mediterranean foreland basin systems. Data include (i) the northern Africa foreland basin (Rif and
Tell), where the main dominantly deep-marine turbidite is quartzarenite in
composition, reflecting abrupt flexure of the African continental margin delivering huge volumes of sand from the African craton; (ii) the southern Spain
(Betic Cordillera) foreland basin, where sandstones strata are quartzolithic in
composition, closely related to a provenance from the Malaguide and
Alpujarride complexes of the internal domains of the Betic Cordillera; (iii) the
Apennines foreland basin system, where sandstone suites testify changing
nature of composition in time from quartzolithic to quartzofeldspathic and
arkosic in response of huge uplift, erosion and unroofing of mid-crustal continental blocks of the Mesomediterranean microplate and Alps.
Studies on modern sand detrital modes at the Mediterranean scale
have focussed on the southern drainage and coastal environments of
Spain (e.g. Critelli et al., 2003), of northern Morocco (e.g. Zaghloul
et al., 2009; Reddad et al., 2016), the deep-sea fan of the Alboran Sea
(Marsaglia et al., 1999; Critelli et al., 2003), the volcanic islands of
central Tyrrhenian Sea (Aeolian Island; Morrone et al., 2017) the Tyrrhenian coast of Apennines (Garzanti et al., 2002), drainage, coastal
and deep-marine environments of western (Tyrrhenian Sea) and eastern
(Ionian Sea) Calabria (e.g. Le Pera and Critelli, 1997; Le Pera et al.,
2001; Critelli and Le Pera, 2003; Perri et al., 2015, 2012b) (See Fig. 11).
For Calabria, useful dataset includes also sediment and weathering
profiles on phaneritic crystalline rocks at the onset of sedimentary cycle
(e.g., Le Pera et al., 2001; Scarciglia et al., 2005, 2007, 2016; Borrelli
et al., 2012, 2014). This data set, that it is not included in Table 1 reveal
close analogies of modern sand modes with Miocene sandstone detrital
modes in identical source rocks and dispersal pathways from drainages
to deep-marine environments in intra-arc, backarc and foreland settings. The modern setting of the Mediterranean sand dispersal pathways
testifies provenance relations with main typical sand suites of quartzolithic sand petrofacies (Betic, Rif, and Tyrrhenian back-arc side of
Apennines), quartzofeldspathic sand petrofacies (Ionian piedmont,
coast and deep-sea of Calabria), polycyclic quartzose sand petrofacies
(eastern end of Betic at intersection with the Atlantic Coast, and
northern Morocco), and volcanolithic sand petrofacies in intra-arc setting of Aeolian Islands and the Tyrrhenian coast of Italy derived from
the Campania-Latium volcanic province.
7. Conclusions and general implications
The geodynamic evolution of the Western Tethys is characterized by
multiple phases of rifting, seafloor spreading, subduction, and
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S. Critelli
Fig. 11. Map with location of samples and QtFL diagram of modern sand suites (river, beach, delta, shallow-marine and deep-marine turbidite) for the circumMediterranean region. Data include (they are not included in Table 1) the: (i) river and beach quartzolithic and quartzose sand of the Mediterranean coast of Spain
(data from Critelli et al., 2003); (ii) river and beach quartzolithic sand of the Mediterranean coast of northern Morocco (data from Zaghloul et al., 2009; Reddad et al.,
2016); (iii) volcanolithic, quartzofeldspathic and quartzolithic river and beach sand of Tyrrhenian coast of Apennines and Calabria (data from Le Pera and Critelli,
1997; Garzanti et al., 2002; Critelli and Le Pera, 2003) and shallow-marine and deep-marine lithofeldspathic turbidite sand of the Paola Basin (Tyrrhenian Sea)
(Critelli and Le Pera, 1998, 2003; Critelli, 1999); (iv) river, beach, delta, shallow-marine and deep-marine quartzofeldspathic turbidite sand of the Ionian Sea (data
from Critelli and Le Pera, 1994, 2003; Le Pera et al., 2001; Perri et al., 2012, 2015); (v) river and beach quartzolithic sand of Ionian coast of Apennines (Critelli and Le
Pera, 1998, 2003), and (vi) beach volcanolithic sand of the Aeolian volcanic archipelago (Lipari Island; Morrone et al., 2017). Dataset includes also Middle Miocene,
Pliocene and Pleistocene sands of ODP Leg 161 Sites 976, 977, 978 Alboran Sea; Marsaglia et al., 1999).
Adria continental margin, including pelagic and shallow-marine
carbonate platform strata.
5 Late Miocene-early Pliocene in central Mediterranean correspond
with the rifting stage of the opening of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the
detachment of inner portions of the fold-thrust belt causing tectonic
Important sources for the northern Apennines foreland turbidite
systems are also the uplifted Alpine chain, particularly since
Serravallian (Marnoso-Arenacea Formation; e.g. Gandolfi et al.,
1983) to the late Miocene (Laga Formation; e.g. Stalder et al., 2018).
Additional source areas are the progressive deformed terranes of the
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denudation and increasing of uplift. The Calabrian terrains experienced huge uplift and denudational processes and sediment generation with dispersal pathway in the Apennines foreland basin
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In conclusions, provenance interpretations, used in conjunction
with other stratigraphic and structural evidence can contribute to test
alternate paleogeographic and paleotectonic evolution. The circumMediterranean orogen is a key place to test provenance relations at
regional scale, and can be useful for analysis of sediment dispersal
systems on a global scale of other major orogens.
Acknowledgments
This research was funded by MIUR (Italian Ministry of Education,
University and Research), MIUR-PRIN Project 2001.04.5835 “Age and
characteristics of the Verrucano-type deposits from the Northern
Apennines to the Betic Cordilleras: consequences for the palaeogeographic and structural evolution of the central-western Mediterranean
Alpine Chains”, the 2006–2008 MIUR-PRIN Project 2006.04.8397 “The
Cenozoic clastic sedimentation within the circum-Mediterranean orogenic belts: implications for palaeogeographic and palaeotectonic evolution”, the 2010-2012 MIUR-PRIN Project The Thrace sedimentary
basin (Eocene-Quaternary; Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria): stratigraphicdepositional architecture and sediment dispersal pathway within postorogenic basins”, and the University of Calabria MIUR-ex60% Projects
(Palaeogeographic and Palaeotectonic Evolution of the CircumMediterranean Orogenic Belts, 2001–2005; and Relationships between
Tectonic Accretion, Volcanism and Clastic Sedimentation within the
Circum-Mediterranean Orogenic Belts, 2006-2018; support to S.
Critelli). This paper was supported by the “Laboratory of Geodynamics,
Geo-Paleobiology and Earth Surface Processes” of the Departmemnt of
Biology, Ecology and Earth Sciences at the University of Calabria. F.
Perri and G. Campilongo helping on drawing figures. I gratefully acknowledge discussions in the field and constructive criticism of J.
Arribas, C. Doglioni, A. Martin-Algarra, M. Martin-Martin, F. Muto, F.
Perri, V. Perrone, N. Zaghloul and G.G. Zuffa. Author thank J. Arribas,
T. Lawton and M. Martini for reviewing an early version of the manuscript, and M. Martin-Martin and G. Mongelli for final review of the
manuscript. This paper is dedicated to Bill Dickinson whose ideas were
important and influenced the methodological conception of this work.
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