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Jérôme Prieto, Madelaine Böhme and Martin Gross

The cricetid rodents from Gratkorn (Austria, Styria): a benchmark locality for the continental Sarmatian sensu stricto (late Middle Miocene) in the Central Paratethys

The recent discovery of a terrestrial vertebrate assemblage in the clay pit St. Stefan at Gratkorn (Austria, Styrian Basin) is of major importance for our understanding of the evolution of late Middle Miocene mammal assemblages in the Paratethys realm. The cricetid rodent assemblage includes four species: Megacricetodon minutus Daxner, 1967, Democricetodon sp. nov. (sensu Kälin & Engesser 2001), Eumyarion sp., and "Cricetodon" fandli sp. nov. The latter species belongs to the "Cricetodon" fandli-C. klariankae Hír, 2007 lineage, which allows for a long-distance correlation with other late Middle Miocene/earliest Late Miocene European localities. The biostratigraphic conclusions drawn from the study of the fossils from Gratkorn concurs with the age estimates based on regional geology, paleomagnetic measurements, and the gastropod-based biostratigraphy at the base of the Late Sarmatian s. str. (late Serravallian, latest Volhynian), around 12-12.2 Ma (Chron C5An.1n) ago.

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Monika Doubrawa, Martin Gross and Mathias Harzhauser

Abstract

This paper describes the section and fossil content of a former gravel pit in the Eastern Styrian Basin (SE Austria), which exposes sediments of a fluvial system, ranging from within channel to overbank environments. A predominately terrestrial gastropod fauna of 15 species so far, was recovered from a palaeosol formed in a moist and vegetated, floodplain or abandoned channel. Up-section, a shallow freshwater pond/lake developed within the floodplain, settled by fishes, molluscs and ostracods. By integrating regional geological and biostratigraphical data derived from the terrestrial gastropod fauna as well as from the other recovered biota, these strata are of late middle Miocene (late Sarmatian s.str.) age. Hence, this fossil site provides a rare insight into the terrestrial habitats in the hinterland of the Sarmatian Sea and their biota, which are otherwise barely known in Central Europe.

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Sorin Filipescu, Angela Miclea, Martin Gross, Mathias Harzhauser, Kamil Zágoršek and Cătălin Jipa

Abstract

The Sarmatian sedimentary record of the Borod Depression (eastern Pannonian Basin) consists of a marine sequence with continental influence. The investigated section, located near Vârciorog, was biostratigraphically and paleoenvironmentally analysed. The micro- and macrofossil assemblages include dasycladaceans, characeans, foraminifera, molluscs, polychaetes, ostracods, crabs, bryozoans, fish and vertebrate remains, which are characteristic for a shallow marine setting with local transitions to continental facies. The microfossil assemblages are characteristic for the Elphidium reginum Zone and Mohrensternia Zone of the early Sarmatian (Serravallian). The succession of populations correlates with the sedimentological trend, allowing the separation of several genetic units. The relative sea-level changes and the progradational trend from the top of the section suggest active tectonics in the hinterland (Apuseni Mountains). The shallow seas surrounding the emerging islands (Apuseni Mountains) provided the connections between the Pannonian and Transylvanian basins during the early Sarmatian

Open access

Mathias Harzhauser, Oleg Mandic, Matthias Kranner, Petra Lukeneder, Andrea K. Kern, Martin Gross, Giorgio Carnevale and Christine Jawecki

Abstract

Sarmatian and Pannonian cores, drilled at the western margin of the Vienna Basin in the City of Vienna, reveal a complex succession of marine and lacustrine depositional environments during the middle to late Miocene transition. Two Sarmatian and two Pannonian transgressive-regressive sequences were studied in detail. Identical successions of benthic faunal assemblages and similar patterns in magnetic susceptibility logs characterise these sequences. This allows a correlation of the boreholes over a distance of ~3.5 km across one of the major marginal faults of the Vienna Basin. Biostratigraphic data, combined with rough estimates of sedimentation rates, reveal large gaps between these sequences, suggesting that only major transgressions reached this marginal area. In particular, during the Sarmatian-Pannonian transition, the basin margin completely emerged and turned into a terrestrial setting for at least 600 ka.