Kimmeridge Clay

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Kimmeridge Clay
Stratigraphic range: Kimmeridgian-Tithonian
Beach and cliffs, Egmont Bight - geograph.org.uk - 900296.jpg
Grey cliffs of Upper Kimmeridge Clay above the beach at Egmont Bight
TypeGeological formation
Unit ofAncholme Group
Sub-unitsBirch Sandstone Member, Burns Sandstone Member, Claymore Sandstone Member, Dirk Sandstone Member, Magnus Sandstone Member, Ptarmigan Sandstone Member, Ribble Sandstone Member
UnderliesPortland Sandstone Formation
OverliesAmpthill Clay, Corallian Group
Lithology
PrimaryMudstone
OtherSiltstone, Sandstone, Conglomerate
Location
RegionEngland (surface)
North Sea (subsurface)
CountryEngland
Type section
Named forKimmeridge Bay
LocationType area - coastal outcrops from Black Head, Weymouth to Chapmans Pool

The Kimmeridge Clay is a sedimentary deposit of fossiliferous marine clay which is of Late Jurassic to lowermost Cretaceous age and occurs in southern and eastern England and in the North Sea.[1] This rock formation is the major source rock for North Sea oil. The fossil fauna of the Kimmeridge Clay includes turtles, crocodiles, sauropods, plesiosaurs, pliosaurs and ichthyosaurs, as well as a number of invertebrate species.

Description[edit]

Kimmeridge Clay is named after the village of Kimmeridge on the Dorset coast of England, where it is well exposed and forms part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.[2] Onshore it outcrops across England, in a band stretching from Dorset in the south-west, north-east to North Yorkshire. Offshore it is found throughout the Southern, Central and Northern North Sea.[1]

The foundations of the Humber Bridge on the southern (Barton) side of the bridge are on Kimmeridge Clay beneath superficial deposits, under the Humber estuary.[3]

Economic importance[edit]

Kimmeridge Clay is of great economic importance,[2] being the major source rock for oil fields in the North Sea hydrocarbon province.[4] It has distinctive physical properties and log responses.[5]

A Kimmeridge Oil Shale Project (KOSP) has been pursued by the UK based oil and shale gas exploration company Cuadrilla Resources.[6]:6

Vertebrate fauna[edit]

Color key
Taxon Reclassified taxon Taxon falsely reported as present Dubious taxon or junior synonym Ichnotaxon Ootaxon Morphotaxon
Notes
Uncertain or tentative taxa are in small text; crossed out taxa are discredited.

Fauna uncovered from the Kimmeridge Clay include:[7]

Ray-finned fish[edit]

Ray-finned fishes of the Kimmeridge clay Formation
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic Position Abundance Notes Images

Thrissops[8][9]

Indeterminate

Dorset

Most common Kimmeridge clay fish, known from several complete specimens

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Complete specimen

Pachythrissops

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Allothrissops

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Chondrostei

Indeterminate

Dorset

One specimen, a fin

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Lepidotes

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Gyrodus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Caturus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Aspidorhynchus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Hypsocormus

H.tenuirostris

Dorset

Rare

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Pachycormus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Rare

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Eurycormus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Rare, one complete specimen

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Leptolepidae

Indeterminate

Dorset

Fairly common, multiple near complete specimens.

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Lobe-finned fish[edit]

Lobe-finned fishes of the Kimmeridge clay Formation
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic Position Abundance Notes Images

Holophagus

Indeterminate

Dorset

One specimen, cranial material

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches. More than 2 metres long

Coelacanthus

Indeterminate

Dorset

One specimen, a portion of the head

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Cartilaginous fish[edit]

Cartilaginous fishes of the Kimmeridge clay Formation
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic Position Abundance Notes Images

Asteracanthus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Known from many dorsal spines

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Chimaera

Indeterminate

Dorset

Known from many dorsal spines

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Hybodus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Known from many dorsal spines, perhaps a complete head

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Ischyodus

Indeterminate

Dorset

One specimen

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Rhinobatidae

Indeterminate

Dorset

Known from a complete specimen, and other isolated remains

Housed at the etches collection, discovered by Steve Etches

Archosaurs[edit]

Thalattosuchians[edit]

Genus Species Location Member Abundance Notes Images

Cricosaurus

C. gracilis

A metriorhynchine metriorhynchid

Dakosaurus

D. maximus

A geosaurine metriorhynchid

Metriorhynchus

M. geoffreyi

A metriorhynchine metriorhynchid

Plesiosuchus

P. manseli

A geosaurine metriorhynchid

Steneosaurus

S. megarhinus

A teleosaurid

Torvoneustes[10][11]

T. carpenteri[10]

A geosaurine metriorhynchid

T. coryphaeus[12]

A geosaurine metriorhynchid

Ornithischians[edit]

Indeterminate nodosaurid remains have been found in Wiltshire, England.[7] Indeterminate stegosaurid remains have been found in Dorset and Wiltshire, England.[7]


Genus Species Location Member Abundance Notes Images

Cumnoria[7]

C. prestwichii[7]

"Fragmentary skull and skeleton."[13]

Dacentrurus[7]

D. armatus[7]

Wiltshire remains include specimens previously referred to Omosaurus armatus and O. hastiger.[7]

Ornithopoda

Indeterminate[7]

Kimmeridge clay remains considered to represent a possible close relative of Bugenasaura[14] are now regarded as the remains of an indeterminate euornithopod.[7](The specimen may have had its locality and horizon mislabelled.)

Omosaurus[7]

O.armatus[7]

Reclassified as Dacentrurus armatus because the generic name Omosaurus was preoccupied.[7]

O. hastiger[7]

Saurischians[edit]

Indeterminate ornithomimmid remains have been found in Dorset, England.[7] An undescribed theropod genus was found in Dorset.[7]

Genus Species Location Stratigraphic position Material Notes Images

Bothriospondylus[7]

B. suffosus[7]

"[Seven] dorsal and sacral centra."[15]

Cetiosaurus[7]

C. humerocristatus[7]

Now Duriatitan.[16]

Indeterminate[7]

Remains previously referred to an indeterminate species of Cetiosaurus are now regarded as indeterminate sauropod material.[7]

Duriatitan

D. humerocristatus

Humerus[17]

A titanosauriform[16]

Gigantosaurus[7]

G. megalonyx[7]

  • Cambridgeshire[7]

Remains previously referred to Gigantosaurus megalonyx are now regarded as indeterminate sauropod material.[7]

Ischyrosaurus[7]

I. manseli[7]

"Humerus."[18]

Remains previously referred to Ischyrosaurus manseli are now regarded as indeterminate sauropod material.[7]

Juratyrant[19][20]

J. langhami

  • Dorset

Partial skeleton

A tyrannosaur

Theropoda[7]

Indeterminate

Remains previously referred to Megalosaurus are now regarded as indeterminate theropod material.[7]

Sauropoda[7]

Indeterminate[7]

Remains previously attributed to one or more indeterminate species of Ornithopsis (incl. O. leedsii) are now regarded as possible indeterminate sauropod material.[7]

Pterosaurs[edit]

Genus Species location Material notes
Cuspicephalus[21] C. scarfi

Dorset

Partial Skull Missing Crest, lower jaw and dentition

Rhamphorhynchus

R.etchesi

Dorset

Germanodactylus

indeterminate

Dorset

Plesiosaurs[edit]

Genus Species Location Member Abundance Notes Images

Bathyspondylus

B. swindoniensis

Plesiosaur of unknown affinities

Colymbosaurus

C. megadeirus

A cryptoclidid

C. trochantericus

Nomen dubium

Kimmerosaurus

K. langhami

A cryptoclidid

Plesiosaurus

"P." manseli

Distinct from Colymbosaurus.[22]

Pliosaurus[23][24]

P. brachydeirus

A thalassophonean pliosaurid

P. brachyspondylus

P. carpenteri

A thalassophonean pliosaurid

P. kevani

A thalassophonean pliosaurid

P. portentificus[25]

A thalassophonean pliosaurid

P. ?rossicus

A thalassophonean pliosaurid; taxonomic identification of specimens tentative[23]

P. westburyensis

A thalassophonean pliosaurid

P. sp. 1

Partial skeleton, CAMSM J.35991

A thalassophonean pliosaurid; previously assigned to the nomen dubium P. brachyspondylus[23][24]

P. sp. 2

Mandible, NHMUK PV OR 39362

A thalassophonean pliosaurid; previously assigned to the nomen dubium P. macromerus[23][24]

Spitrasaurus

Indeterminate

Ichthyosaurs[edit]

Ray-finned fishes of the Kimmeridge clay Formation
Genus Species Location Stratigraphic Position Abundance Notes Images

Brachypterygius

B.extremus

Dorset

Ichthyosauridae

Indeterminate

Dorset

Giant, near complete specimen. Proposed to have been 6 metres long when complete. Housed at the Etches collection in dorset.

Macropterygius

M.trigonus

Dorset

Nomen dubium - classified by a single vertebra

Nannopterygius

N.enthekiodon

Dorset

Nannopterygius entheciodon.JPG

Ophthalmosaurus

Indeterminate

Dorset

Invertebrates[edit]

An aptychus with the name "Trigonellites latus", from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation

The invertebrate fauna of the Kimmeridge Clay includes:[26][27]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b British Geological Survey. "Kimmeridge Clay Formation". BGS Lexicon of Named Rock Units. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  2. ^ a b Gallois R.W. (2004). "The Kimmeridge Clay: the most intensively studied formation in Britain" (PDF). Open University Geological Journal. 25 (2).
  3. ^ Historic England. "The Humber Bridge". Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  4. ^ Gautier D.L. (2005). "Kimmeridgian Shales Total Petroleum System of the North Sea Graben Province" (PDF). United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  5. ^ Penn I.M.; Cox B.M.; Gallois R.W. (2007). "Towards precision in stratigraphy: geophysical log correlation". In Gregory F.J.; Copestake P.; Pearce J.M. Key Issues in Petroleum Geology: Stratigraphy. Geological Society, London. pp. 34–35. ISBN 9781862392373.
  6. ^ Andy Lukas (17 July 2013). "Approaches to informed and balanced debate about shale gas in the UK – How we are working with the Communities" (PDF). Fracking and our Gas Future. AJ Lucas Group Ltd. p. 45. Retrieved 18 May 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay Weishampel, David B; et al. (2004). "Dinosaur distribution (Late Jurassic, Europe)." In: Weishampel, David B.; Dodson, Peter; and Osmólska, Halszka (eds.): The Dinosauria, 2nd, Berkeley: University of California Press. Pp. 545–549. ISBN 0-520-24209-2.
  8. ^ Etches, S, Clarke, J. (2010). Life in Jurassic seas. Dorset, Dorchester: Epic Creative Print.
  9. ^ http://www.theetchescollection.org/collections Retrieved 31/10/2017
  10. ^ a b Wilkinson, L.E.; Young, M.T.; Benton, M.J. (2008). "A new metriorhynchid crocodilian (Mesoeucrocodylia: Thalattosuchia) from the Kimmeridgian (Upper Jurassic) of Wiltshire, UK". Palaeontology. 51 (6): 1307–1333. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2008.00818.x.
  11. ^ Andrade, M.B.D.; Young, M.T.; Desojo, J.B.; Brusatte, S.L. (2010). "The evolution of extreme hypercarnivory in Metriorhynchidae (Mesoeucrocodylia: Thalattosuchia) based on evidence from microscopic denticle morphology". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 30 (5): 1451–1465. doi:10.1080/02724634.2010.501442.
  12. ^ Mark T. Young; Marco Brandalise De Andrade; Steve Etches; Brian L. Beatty (2013). "A new metriorhynchid crocodylomorph from the Lower Kimmeridge Clay Formation (Late Jurassic) of England, with implications for the evolution of dermatocranium ornamentation in Geosaurini". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. 169 (4): 820–848. doi:10.1111/zoj.12082.
  13. ^ "Table 19.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 415.
  14. ^ Galton, Peter M. (1999). "Cranial anatomy of the hypsilophodont dinosaur Bugenasaura infernalis (Ornithischia: Ornithopoda) from the Upper Cretaceous of North America". Revue Paléobiologie, Genève. 18 (2): 517–534.
  15. ^ "Table 13.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 270.
  16. ^ a b Paul M. Barrett; Roger B.J. Benson; Paul Upchurch (2010). "Dinosaurs of Dorset: Part II, the sauropod dinosaurs (Saurischia, Sauropoda) with additional comments on the theropods". Proceedings of the Dorset Natural History and Archaeological Society. 131: 113–126.
  17. ^ "Table 13.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 267.
  18. ^ "Table 13.1," in Weishampel, et al. (2004). Page 271.
  19. ^ Benson, R.B.J. (2008). "New information on Stokesosaurus, a tyrannosauroid (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from North America and the United Kingdom". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 28 (3): 732–750. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2008)28[732:NIOSAT]2.0.CO;2.
  20. ^ Brusatte, S.L.; Benson, R.B.J. (2013). "The systematics of Late Jurassic tyrannosauroids (Dinosauria: Theropoda) from Europe and North America". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 58 (1): 47–54. doi:10.4202/app.2011.0141.
  21. ^ "A new monofenestratan pterosaur from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation (Kimmeridgian, Upper Jurassic) of Dorset, England - Acta Palaeontologica Polonica". www.app.pan.pl. Retrieved 2017-08-31.
  22. ^ Benson, RBJ; Bowdler, T (2014). "Anatomy of Colymbosaurus (Reptilia, Plesiosauria) from the Kimmeridge Clay Formation of the U.K., and high diversity among Late Jurassic plesiosauroids". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 34 (5): 1053–1071. doi:10.1080/02724634.2014.850087.
  23. ^ a b c d Roger B. J. Benson, Mark Evans, Adam S. Smith, Judyth Sassoon, Scott Moore-Faye, Hilary F. Ketchum and Richard Forrest (2013). "A Giant Pliosaurid Skull from the Late Jurassic of England". PLoS ONE. 8 (5): e65989. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0065989. PMC 3669260. PMID 23741520.
  24. ^ a b c Espen M. Knutsen (2012). "A taxonomic revision of the genus Pliosaurus (Owen, 1841a) Owen, 1841b". Norwegian Journal of Geology. 92 (2–3): 259–276. ISSN 0029-196X. Low resolution pdf Archived 2013-12-24 at the Wayback Machine. High resolution pdf Archived 2013-12-24 at the Wayback Machine.
  25. ^ Noè, L. F.; Smith, D. T. J.; Walton, D. I. (2004). "A new species of Kimmeridgian pliosaur (Reptilia; Sauropterygia) and its bearing on the nomenclature of Liopleurodon macromerus". Proceedings of the Geologists' Association. 115: 13. doi:10.1016/S0016-7878(04)80031-2.
  26. ^ http://www.fullbooks.com/The-Student-s-Elements-of-Geology7.html The Student's Elements of Geology by Sir Charles Lyell Part 7 out of 14 accessed 13 February 2009.
  27. ^ Wignall, Paul B. (1990). "Benthic palaeoecology of the late Jurassic Kimmeridge Clay of England" (PDF). Special Papers in Palaeontology. The Palaeontological Association, London. 43. ISBN 978-0-901702-42-5. Retrieved February 8, 2011.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Galton, P.M. 1999. Cranial anatomy of the hypsilophodontid dinosaur Bugenasaura infernalis (Ornithischia: Ornithopoda) from the Upper Cretaceous of North America. Revue Pale´obiologie, 18, 517–534.

Further reading[edit]

  • Martill, D.M., Naish, D. & Earland, S. 2006. Dinosaurs in marine strata: evidence from the British Jurassic, including a review of the allochthonous vertebrate assemblage from the marine Kimmeridge Clay Formation (Upper Jurassic) of Great Britain. In: Colectivo Arqueologico y Paleontologico Salense, (ed.) Actas de las III Jornadas Intrernacionales sobre Paleontologı´a de Dinosaurios y su Entorno, 16–17 Sep. 2004. Salas de los Infantes, Burgos, 47–84.