A Caltech Library Service

Geobiology of the late Paleoproterozoic Duck Creek Formation, Western Australia

Wilson, Jonathan P. and Fischer, Woodward W. and Johnston, David T. and Knoll, Andrew H. and Grotzinger, John P. and Walter, Malcolm R. and McNaughton, Neal J. and Simon, Mel and Abelson, John and Schrag, Daniel P. and Summons, Roger and Allwood, Abigail and Andres, Miriam and Gammon, Crystal and Garvin, Jessica and Rashby, Sky and Schweizer, Maia and Watters, Wesley A. (2010) Geobiology of the late Paleoproterozoic Duck Creek Formation, Western Australia. Precambrian Research, 179 (1-4). pp. 135-149. ISSN 0301-9268.

[img] PDF - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

[img] PDF - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

[img] PDF - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


The ca. 1.8 Ga Duck Creek Formation, Western Australia, preserves 1000 m of carbonates and minor iron formation that accumulated along a late Paleoproterozoic ocean margin. Two upward-deepening stratigraphic packages are preserved, each characterized by peritidal precipitates at the base and iron formation and carbonate turbidites in its upper part. Consistent with recent studies of Neoarchean basins, carbon isotope ratios of Duck Creek carbonates show no evidence for a strong isotopic depth gradient, but carbonate minerals in iron formations can be markedly depleted in ^(13)C. In contrast, oxygen isotopes covary strongly with depth; δ^(18)O values as positive as 2‰ VPDB in peritidal facies systematically decline to values of −6 to −16‰ in basinal rocks, reflecting, we posit, the timing of diagenetic closure. The Duck Creek Formation contains microfossils similar to those of the Gunflint Formation, Canada; they are restricted to early diagenetic cherts developed in basinal facies, strengthening the hypothesis that such fossils capture communities driven by iron metabolism. Indeed, X-ray diffraction data indicate that the Duck Creek basin was ferruginous throughout its history. The persistence of ferruginous waters and iron formation deposition in Western Australia for at least several tens of millions of years after the transition to sulfidic conditions in Laurentia suggests that the late Paleoproterozoic expansion of sulfidic subsurface waters was globally asynchronous.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription DOIArticle
Fischer, Woodward W.0000-0002-8836-3054
Knoll, Andrew H.0000-0003-1308-8585
Grotzinger, John P.0000-0001-9324-1257
Summons, Roger0000-0002-7144-8537
Additional Information:© 2010 Elsevier. Received 25 August 2009; revised 12 February 2010; accepted 15 February 2010; available online 4 March 2010. We thank the Agouron Institute for funding, Henry Goodall and Caroline Minnear for logistical support, Sally Sweetapple for field assistance, G. Eischeid for mass spectrometry assistance, N. Tosca for XRD guidance, B. Croft for XRD support, R. Millikan and J. Creveling for thoughtful comments, and David Fike and one anonymous reviewer for constructive criticisms. JPW was supported in part by the NASA Astrobiology Institute.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Agouron InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Paleoproterozoic; Carbon; Oxygen; Iron formation; Microfossils
Issue or Number:1-4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20100607-151253892
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:18591
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:09 Jun 2010 19:11
Last Modified:01 Jul 2020 17:11

Repository Staff Only: item control page