Stratigraphic paleobiology of late Quaternary mollusk assemblages from the Po Plain-Adriatic Sea system

Azzarone, Michele (2019) Stratigraphic paleobiology of late Quaternary mollusk assemblages from the Po Plain-Adriatic Sea system, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Scienze della terra, della vita e dell'ambiente, 31 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/8807.
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Stratigraphic paleobiology - a relatively new approach for investigating fossiliferous sedimentary successions - is rooted on the assumption that the fossil record cannot be read at face value, being controlled not only by biotic, but also by sedimentary processes that control deposition and erosion of sediments. By applying the stratigraphic paleobiology tenets, this Ph.D. project focused on acquisition and analyses of macrofossils data to assess the response of late Quaternary ecosystems to environmental changes and enhance stratigraphic interpretations of fossiliferous successions. A primary activity of my Ph.D. research involved assembling a macrobenthic dataset from the latest Pleistocene glacial succession of the near-Mid Adriatic Deep (Central Adriatic, Italy). This dataset once combined with its counterpart from the Po coastal plain (Holocene), will offer a unique perspective on mollusk faunas and their dynamics during the current glacial-interglacial cycle. This thesis includes four papers. The first one assessed the quality and resolution of the macrofossil record from transgressive Holocene deposits of Po plain (Italy). The second paper focused on the Holocene fossil record of the Po coastal plain to evaluate the response of trematode parasites to high-frequency sea-level oscillations. The third study investigated distribution of last occurrences of macrobenthic species along a down-dip transect in the Po coastal plain and evaluate potential effects of sequence stratigraphic architecture on mass extinction pattern. The fourth is a case study to test the robustness of the paleoecological pattern derived by the application of different ordination analyses (DCA and nMDS) and to assess the main environmental driver(s) of faunal turnover in marine settings. In summary, my Ph.D. demonstrates that even if the fossil record cannot always be read literally, the stratigraphic paleobiology approach to the geologic record makes it possible to interpret biological trends from the fossil record and enhance the stratigraphic resolution of fossiliferous successions.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Azzarone, Michele
Dottorato di ricerca
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
stratigraphic paleobiology, mollusks, po plain, adriatic sea, paleontology, quaternary, trematodes
Data di discussione
29 Marzo 2019

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