The Lourinhã Formation: the Upper Jurassic to lower most Cretaceous of the Lusitanian Basin, Portugal – landscapes where dinosaurs walked

  • Mateus O
  • Dinis J
  • Cunha P
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Abstract

The fieldtrip aims to give a glimpse on the palaeoenvironments, palaeontology and diagenesis of one of the most productive areas for Late Jurassic dinosaurs and other vertebrates in Europe, namely to the sites of the Lourinhã Formation, which is coeval with the Morrison Fm., in the midwest USA. The Late Jurassic rifting phase of the Lusitanian Basin created several sub-basins separated by main crustal faults. In the western and central area of the basin, the Caldas da Rainha structure separates three sub-basins with different subsidence and infill characteristics (Consolação to the W, Bombarral-Alcobaça to the NE and Turcifal to the SE). The Upper Jurassic-lowermost Cretaceous succession exposed on the coastal cliffs located between Nazaré and Santa Cruz belongs to the Consolação Sub-basin, whereas the coastal outcrops between Santa Cruz and Ericeira show units of the Turcifal Sub-basin. In order to fit the stops in a coherent context, a selection of units of the fieldtrip area is detailed. The stratigraphy of the Upper Jurassic of the Lusitanian Basin is quite complex and no fully accepted general proposal exists. Thus, a review of lithostratigraphy, sedimentology, age and environmental interpretations is presented. Aiming an overall view of landscape where the identified dinosaurs lived, and to discuss the conditions for preservations of its remains, we included interpretations on palaeoclimate, palaeogeography and taphonomy.

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Mateus, O., Dinis, J., & Cunha, P. P. (2017). The Lourinhã Formation: the Upper Jurassic to lower most Cretaceous of the Lusitanian Basin, Portugal – landscapes where dinosaurs walked. Ciências Da Terra - Earth Sciences Journal, 19(1), 75–97. https://doi.org/10.21695/cterra/esj.v19i1.355

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