Reassessment of the age and depositional environments of the Eocene Cayraz Formation, a reference unit for Tethyan larger benthic foraminifera (Haymana Basin, central Turkey)

Özcan E., Hakyemez A., Ciner A., Okay A., Soussi M., Boukhalfa K., ...More

JOURNAL OF ASIAN EARTH SCIENCES, vol.193, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 193
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jseaes.2020.104304
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Artic & Antarctic Regions, Geobase, INSPEC
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The Cayraz Formation, a reference unit for Tethyan Ypresian-middle/late Lutetian larger benthic foraminifera (Haymana Basin, central Turkey), is a thick (> 350 m) 'shallow-marine' mixed carbonate-siliciclastic sequence, divided into lower, middle and upper units. The lower and upper units predominantly consist of rhythmic intercalations of limestone and marly/silty beds with abundant larger benthic foraminifera (LBF), and the middle unit is composed of massive fine siliciclastic sediments, mostly barren in LBF and macrofossils. By studying three sections (CAYA, CAYB, and YES), encompassing the lower unit, we show that the Cayraz Formation (ca. 100 m-thick) displays notable vertical and lateral variability in benthic fauna and facies along an SE-NW transect at its type locality near Cayraz village. The distribution of LBF and facies patterns indicate a general shallowing upward trend, with more open marine environments in the easterly section (CAYA) and restricted shallow marine to continental environments with low diversity fauna in the westerly section (YES). A depositional setting ranging from outer to inner-ramp with continental influence only in the westerly section is proposed. Key orthophragminid and alveolinid taxa from the lower unit of the Cayraz Formation indicate shallow benthic zones (SBZ) 9/10 for its lower part, and SBZ 12 for its upper part, suggesting a late Ypresian age. The massive marly/silty section of the middle unit of the Cayraz Formation overlies the Alveolina-bearing limestones in all sections and yielded abundant planktonic foraminifera suggestive of P9 Zone. This implies a sharp environmental transition from platform to basin across the Ypresian-Lutetian boundary.