Griman Creek Formation

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Griman Creek Formation
Stratigraphic range: Early to Mid Cenomanian
TypeGeological formation
Unit ofRolling Downs Group
Sub-unitsCoocoran Claystone Member, Wallangulla Sandstone Member
UnderliesUnconformity
OverliesSurat Siltstone, Wallumbilla Formation
ThicknessUp to 345 m (1,132 ft)
Lithology
PrimarySandstone, siltstone, mudstone
OtherConglomerate, coal
Location
Coordinates29°24′S 147°42′E / 29.4°S 147.7°E / -29.4; 147.7Coordinates: 29°24′S 147°42′E / 29.4°S 147.7°E / -29.4; 147.7
Approximate paleocoordinates64°24′S 134°54′E / 64.4°S 134.9°E / -64.4; 134.9
Region Queensland
 New South Wales
Country Australia
ExtentSurat Basin
Type section
Named forGriman Creek
Named byReiser
Year defined1970
Griman Creek Formation is located in Australia
Griman Creek Formation
Griman Creek Formation (Australia)

The Griman Creek Formation is a geological formation in northern New South Wales and southern Queensland, Australia whose strata date back to the Cenomanian of the Late Cretaceous.[1] It is most notable for its fossils, including those of dinosaurs and primitive montremes, as well as being a major source of opal, both of which are found near Lightning Ridge, New South Wales[2]

Lithology[edit]

As a whole, the formation primarily consists of thinly bedded medium to fine sandstone, siltstone and mudstone, with sporadic coal seams. In the vicinity of Lightning Ridge, it is divided up into two informal members the underlying Wallangulla Sandstone Member which primarily consists of red fine grained sandstone, light siltstone and grey claystone and is up to 30 metres thick while the overlying Coocoran Claystone consists of about 10 metres of claystone. The contact between the two units is sudden and unconformable. Discontinuous clay lens beds within the Wallangulla Sandstone Member near Lightning Ridge, referred to as the Finch Clay Facies, are one of Australia's primary sources of commercial precious opal, with many mines dug in the area. These deposits are also the primary source of fossils within the formation, a large proportion of which are preserved as semi-precious opalized pseudomorphs. The fauna found in lightning ridge indicates that the depositonal environment of the Finch Clay Facies was in near-coastal freshwater lagoons.[1]

Vertebrate paleofauna[edit]

Indeterminate avialan, euornithopod, and sauropod remains that were once misidentified as brachiosaurid are present in New South Wales, Australia.[2] Euornithopod tracks are also present in New South Wales.

Mammals[edit]

Mammals of the Griman Creek Formation
Genus Species Presence Notes Images

Kollikodon

K. ritchiei

Steropodon

S. galmani

Crocodyliformes[edit]

Crocodyliformes of the Griman Creek Formation
Genus Species Presence Notes Images
Isisfordia[3] I. molnari Lightning Ridge Braincase and referred maxillary fragment

Dinosaurs[edit]

Dinosaurs of the Griman Creek Formation
Genus Species Presence Notes Images
Fostoria F. dhimbangunmal. Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia. An Iguanodont.

Fulgurotherium[2]

F. australe[2]

Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia.[2]

Muttaburrasaurus[2]

Indeterminate[2]

Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia.[2]

Rapator[2]

R. ornitholestoides[2]

Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia.[2]

"Manual element.",[4] A Megaraptoran.

Walgettosuchus[2]

W. woodwardi[2]

Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia.[2]

"Vertebra."[5]

Later determined to be an indeterminate theropod.[2]

Weewarrasaurus[6]

W. pobeni

Geographically present in New South Wales, Australia.

An ornithopod known from an isolated dentary.

Ankylosauria[7] Indeterminate Osteoderm
Enantiornithes Indeterminate Partial Femora

Pterosaurs[edit]

Pterosaurs of the Griman Creek Formation
Genus Species Presence Notes Images
Anhangueria Indeterminate "two isolated tooth crowns", possible limb elements

Testudines[edit]

Testudines of the Griman Creek Formation
Genus Species Presence Notes Images
Spoochelys [8] S. ormondea[9] Primitive Turtle

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bell, Phil R.; Fanti, Federico; Hart, Lachlan J.; Milan, Luke A.; Craven, Stephen J.; Brougham, Thomas; Smith, Elizabeth (January 2019). "Revised geology, age, and vertebrate diversity of the dinosaur-bearing Griman Creek Formation (Cenomanian), Lightning Ridge, New South Wales, Australia". Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. 514: 655–671. doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2018.11.020.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Weishampel, David B; et al. (2004). "Dinosaur distribution (Early Cretaceous, Australasia)." In: Weishampel, David B.; Dodson, Peter; and Osmólska, Halszka (eds.): The Dinosauria, 2nd, Berkeley: University of California Press. Pp. 573-574. ISBN 0-520-24209-2.
  3. ^ Hart, Lachlan J.; Bell, Phil R.; Smith, Elizabeth T.; Salisbury, Steven W. (2019-06-21). "Isisfordia molnari sp. nov., a new basal eusuchian from the mid-Cretaceous of Lightning Ridge, Australia". PeerJ. 7: e7166. doi:10.7717/peerj.7166. ISSN 2167-8359. PMC 6590469. PMID 31275756.
  4. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 74.
  5. ^ "Table 4.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 78.
  6. ^ Bell, Phil R.; Herne, Matthew C.; Brougham, Tom; Smith, Elizabeth T. (2018). "Ornithopod diversity in the Griman Creek Formation (Cenomanian), New South Wales, Australia". PeerJ. 6: e6008. doi:10.7717/peerj.6008. PMC 6284429. PMID 30533306.
  7. ^ Bell, Phil R.; Burns, Michael E.; Smith, Elizabeth T. (2017-10-23). "A probable ankylosaurian (Dinosauria, Thyreophora) from the Early Cretaceous of New South Wales, Australia". Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology. 42 (1): 120–124. doi:10.1080/03115518.2017.1384851. ISSN 0311-5518.
  8. ^ T-Bone Extension, Coocoran Opal Fields at Fossilworks.org
  9. ^ Smith, Elizabeth T.; Kear, Benjamin P. (2013), Brinkman, Donald B.; Holroyd, Patricia A.; Gardner, James D. (eds.), "Spoochelys ormondea gen. et sp. nov., an Archaic Meiolaniid-Like Turtle from the Early Cretaceous of Lightning Ridge, Australia", Morphology and Evolution of Turtles, Springer Netherlands, pp. 121–146, doi:10.1007/978-94-007-4309-0_9, ISBN 9789400743083, retrieved 2019-10-04

Further reading[edit]

  • E. T. Smith and B. P. Kear. 2013. Spoochelys ormondea gen. et sp. nov., an Archaic Meiolaniid-Like Turtle from the Early Cretaceous of Lightning Ridge, Australia. In D. B. Brinkman, P. A. Holroyd, J. D. Gardner (eds.), Morphology and Evolution of Turtles 121-146