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versión On-line ISSN 1851-8044


GARRIDO, Alberto C.. Paleoenvironment of the Auca Mahuevo and Los Barreales sauropod nesting-sites (Late Cretaceous, Neuquén Province, Argentina). Ameghiniana [online]. 2010, vol.47, n.1, pp.99-106. ISSN 1851-8044.

Outcrops of Anacleto Formation at Auca Mahuevo nesting site (Neuquén Province, Argentina) can be divided into two main sections. The lower section (51 m), exhibits a succession of point bar, levee, crevasse channel and crevasse splay deposits, typifing a fine-grained, mixed load, meandering fluvial system. Twenty five km toward south (Los Barreales locality) these deposits become progressively to distal floodplain facies. Egg-layers are exposed along this 25 km, however a higher concentration of egg-clutches occur into paleosols and abandoned channel deposits developed at ancient levee and meander belt areas. Lithofacial evidences allow attributing for this lower section semiarid climatic condition, with marked alternations of wet and dry seasons. Exceptional muddy sheet-floods burying the eggs and nests with a thick bed of mud, facilitating their preservation. The upper section (17 m), is composed by finer sediments of sloughs and lacustrine deposits developed over a poorly drained floodplain, under conditions of major aridity. South toward Los Barreales, evaporitic deposits was formed in saline-lakes. The tectonic and volcanic processes that affected the basin from the middle to upper Campanian were responsible for the variations in the environmental conditions during the latest phase of the Anacleto Formation deposition. Possibly, these changes provoked the abandonment of this area as nesting-ground.

Palabras clave : Anacleto Formation; Upper Cretaceous; Neuquén Basin; Paleoenvironment; Dinosaur nesting-sites.

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