8th International Nannoplankton Association Conference


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Muhammad Z. Iqbal:
Nannoplankton biostratigraphy of Kirthar Formation (Middle to Late Eocene) in Sulaiman Fold-belt Pakistan

A calcareous nannoplankton biostratigraphic study based on 53 surface-samples from the Kirthar Formation of the Garm Ab section, on the eastern flank of the Sulaiman Fold-belt was made. In the study area, the formation has been previously divided into four easily-distinguishable members. The lowermost member is the Habib Rahi Limestone, which is a pale grey to buff, platy limestone with dark grey to black argillaceous intercalations and with thin bands of black cherts. An oil-shale has been observed within this unit. This member is overlain by the Lower Chocolate Clays, reddish-brown, greenish-grey and, in places, gypsiferous shales with grey to brown, thickly- to thinly-bedded calcareous sandstones, claystones and limestones. Overlying this is the Pirkoh Limestone and Shale Member (equivalent to the White Marl Band of other authors). It consists of a pale grey to chalky white, thinly-bedded, argillaceous, Discocyclina marl with subordinate beds of pale grey to chalky white shales, limestones and marls and, in places, containing black cherts. This member has been found to show oil-shale pressure. The uppermost member is the Drazinda Shale (= Upper Chocolate Clays + Pellatispira Beds of other authors). This consists of dark brownish-grey to chocolate-coloured shale, claystone, siltstone, and marl, and is gypsiferous towards the top. The topmost part is pale blueish-grey marl and argillaceous limestone. On the eastern margin of the Sulaiman Range, the lower contact with the Ghazij Formation is transitional.

Previously, several researchers have worked on the Kirthar Formation and have recognised it with different lithological boundaries and have designated different ages (Early to Late Eocene) based on the foraminifera record. However, in the Zindapir area, a marine fish fauna from the Habib Rahi Limestone has placed the age as Middle Eocene. Previous nannoplankton analysis has dated the Kirthar Formation as Middle Eocene (NP16). The present record of calcareous nannoplankton has been synthesised together with the re-evaluated previous biostratigraphic information. These investigations of the Kirthar Formation show that it ranges in age from Middle to Late Eocene in the eastern part of the Sulaiman Range. Six calcareous nannoplankton biozones, from upper NP14 to NP20, have been identified. The poster will show a location map of the study area, a summary chart representing the age of the Kirthar Formation, as assigned by various authors, the lithostratigraphic nomenclature used for the Kirthar Formation by various authors, a distribution chart of calcareous nannoplankton, and the newly-suggested calcareous nannoplankton biozones.


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 [Division of Micropalaeontology] [Department of Geosciences] [Bremen University]

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