Source and depositional processes of coarse-grained limestone event beds in Frasnian slope deposits (Kostomłoty-Mogiłki quarry, Holy Cross Mountains, Poland)
The Kostomłoty-Mogiłki succession is situated in the Kostomłoty transitional zone between the shallow-water Kielce stromatoporoid-coral platform and the deeper Łysogóry basin. In the Kostomłoty-Mogiłki quarry, the upper part of the Szydłówek Beds and Kostomłoty Beds are exposed. The Middle-Upper Frasnian Kostomłoty Beds are composed of shales, micritic and nodular limestones with abundant intercalations of detrital limestones. The dark shales and the micritic and nodular limestones record background sedimentation. The interbedded laminated and detrital limestones reflect high-energy deposition (= event beds). These event beds comprise laminated calcisiltites, fine-grained calcarenites, coarse-grained grain-supported calcirudites fabrics, and matrix-supported calcirudites. The material of these event beds was supplied by both erosion of the carbonate-platform margin and cannibalistic erosion of penecontemporaneous detrital limestones building the slope of this platform. Storms and the tectonic activity were likely the main causes of erosion. Combined and gravity flows were the transporting mechanisms involved in the reworking and redeposition.
In sections exposing Frasnian limestones at five outcrops in the Holy Cross Mountains, five lithofacies (L1 to L5) that represent upper slope to basinal environments are identified. These lithofacies are characterised by dark-coloured micritic limestones-marly shale couplets with many light-coloured intercalations of fine- to coarse-grained limestones (= event beds). This lithofacies pattern characterises mostly low-energy domains punctuated by storm episodes. In addition, these upper-slope to basinal lithofacies are arranged into small-scale, coarsening-upward beds and cycles. The cycles are locally composed of fining/thinning-upward beds. The small-scale cycles have a calculated duration of 19 to 42 kyr. The differential thickness of beds and cycles within and between sections was probably caused by differential subsidence and local tectonics. Possible evidence of tectonic activity is also related to a difference in number of cycles recorded in the time-equivalent sections. The recognised cyclicity shows sea-level fluctuations and a few deepening episodes. Some of them are correlated with the Timan global eustatic events. However, local tectonics and episodic subsidence may have played a significant role in recording brief deepening pulses. Thus, low-amplitude sea-level changes were major factors in platform generation and evolution in the Frasnian of the Holy Cross Mountains modified by local, block-related subsidence.
Late Devonian coarse-grained carbonate deposits in the Holy Cross Mountains were studied for possible storm depositional systems and catastrophic tsunami events, as it must be assumed that the investigated area was strongly affected by tropical hurricanes generated in the open ocean North of Gondwana. This assumption appears consistent with diagnostic features of carbonate tempestites at several places in the Holy Cross Mountains. Sedimentary structures and textures that indicate so are, among other evidence, erosional bases with sole marks, graded units, intra- and bioclasts, different laminations and burrowing at the tops of tempestite layers.
It has been suggested before that a tsunami occurred during the Late Devonian, but the Laurussian shelf had an extensional regime at the time, which excludes intensive seismic activity. The shelf environment also excluded the generation of tsunami waves because the depth was too shallow. Additionally, the Holy Cross Mountains region was surrounded in the Devonian by shallow-marine and stable elevated areas: the Nida Platform, the Opatkowice Platform and the Cracow Platform to the South, and the elevated Lublin-Lviv area to the NE. Thus, tsunami energy should have been absorbed by these regions if tsunamites would have occurred.