FAUNAL RECOVERY IN THE ORDOVICIAN LOCKNE AND TVÄREN CRATER
Åsa Frisk1, Maurits Lindström2 & Lars Holmer1
1Uppsala University, Department of Earth Sciences, Palaeobiology, Norbyvägen 22, SE-752 36 Uppsala, Sweden.
2Stockholm University, Department of Geology and Geochemistry, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
Limited amount of work has been carried out looking at the aftermath of marine impacts; in particular the patterns of faunal recovery in and around marine craters have never been studied in detail. In Baltoscandia several marine impacts occurred during the Ordovician, and this project focuses on the Lockne and Tvären craters. The Lockne crater in Jämtland, Sweden, is well exposed on land while the Tvären crater, located under water in the Stockholm archipelago, Sweden, is available as drill cores and erratic boulders. The impacted sedimentary sequence at Tvären consisted of Ordovician carbonates resting on non-lithified sands of Early to earliest Middle Cambrian age whereas at Lockne the same kind of limestone rests on Middle to Upper Cambrian bituminous mud. After the impact events and the settling of the impact ejectas and resurge materials, deposition of carbonates continued (Dalby Limestone).
After impact the substrate became devoid of life. Large areas were affected by the local extinction of the fauna and thus provided virgin ground for the settling of marine fauna still living in the surrounding sea, though not affected by the impact. A dramatic alteration of the seafloor topography, caused by the impact, offered new habitats characterized by the crater morphology and sheltering rims. The immigrating biota, mostly consisting of chitinozoans, graptolites, trilobites, bryozoans, ostracodes, echinoderms, cephalopods and brachiopods, developed new ecosystems. Certain groups are restricted to deeper or lower water levels, varying during the sedimentation in the crater, while some occur throughout the succession. A detailed biostratigraphic study of the post-impact succession in the craters is being carried out in order to understand how the abundance of species changed in relation to the varied environments and how the pre-impact faunal groups recovered gradually as life returned onto a sterile seafloor.