Instituto de Fisiografía y Geología
Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Ingeniería y Agrimensura
Universidad Nacional de Rosario
Pellegrini 250, 2000 Rosario, Argentina



Boletín del Instituto de Fisiografía y Geología

ISSN 1666-115X


Boletín del Instituto de Fisiografía y Geología, Volumen 83, 2003: 27-34.


Andean Lower Tithonian (Picunleufuense Zone) ammonites and aptychus from Estancia Maria Juana, Southern Neuquén Basin, Argentina

Horacio Parent, Alberto C. Garrido, Günter Schweigert & Armin Scherzinger


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H. Parent []: Laboratorio de Paleontología, IFG-FCEIA, Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Pellegrini 250, 2000 Rosario, Argentina.
A.C. Garrido []: Museo Provincial de Ciencias Naturales “Prof. Dr. Juan A. Olsacher”, Dirección Provincial de Minería, Etcheluz y Ejército Argentino, 8340 Zapala, Neuquén, Argentina
G. Schweigert []: Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde, Rosenstein 1, 70191 Stuttgart, Germany
A. Scherzinger []: Lämmerhalde 3, 71735 Eberdingen, Germany.


Abstract: The ammonite fauna of the Lower Tithonian of the locality Estancia María Juana, southern Neuquén Basin is described for first time. The studied material was collected from the Portada Covunco Member (lower part of the Vaca Muerta Formation) which consists of finely sandy shaly marls with large concretions containing abundant crushed ammonites, aptychi, bivalves and gastropods. The ammonites belong to the species Choicensisphinctes choicensis and Lithacoceras picunleufuense transient a, indicating the picunleufuense a Horizon, which is the base of the Lower Tithonian Picunleufuense standard chronostratigraphic Zone. Middle Tithonian ammonites occur as poorly preserved specimens of Catutosphinctes in calcareous sandstones.

     An aptychus, collected from a concretion, among the bulk of Choicensisphinctes choicensis is of the Praestriaptuchus-type and is concluded it belongs to this ammonite. This association gives additional support to the hypothesis on the origin of Choicensisphinctes from L. picunleufuense in the Late Kimmeridgian or earliest Tithonian.

The concretions of the picunleufuense a Horizon are interpreted as late diagenetic, showing that this kind of concretions are among the few marine sedimentary settings where ammonites with their aptychus in-situ could have been preserved.


Key-words: Ammonoidea; Argentina; Tithonian; Picunleufuense Zone; Praestriaptychus; Late diagenetic concretions.