Infilling of trace fossils can serve as a proxy for sediment otherwise missing from basin deposits. The Petra Tou Romiou section (southern Cyprus) includes calcilutite/calcarenite material that represents deep-marine deposits of Eocene age. Lateral and vertical variation indicates pelagic, gravitational, and bottom-current processes simultaneously influencing sedimentation. Detailed ichnological analysis resolved interactions between these deep-marine sedimentary processes in this distal marine setting. Calcarenite turbiditic beds occur as well-preserved and continuous tabular beds that disappear laterally. In some cases, trace fossils infilled with calcarenitic material are termed tubular turbidites. These structures correspond to actively filled Planolites formed in softground conditions and infilled by calcarenitic sediment interpreted as the record of missing turbiditic deposits when calcarenite turbiditic beds disappeared due to erosion. The variable preservation of calcarenite turbidite beds along with the presences of tubular turbidites indicate rapid erosion following turbidite deposition and post-depositional reworking of turbidites by bottom-currents. A refined interpretation of tubular turbidites can help constrain sedimentary processes that form deep-marine deposits and as such, has considerable paleoceanographic and economic implications.
Rodríguez-Tovar, F. J., Hernández-Molina, F. J., Hüneke, H., Chiarella, D., Llave, E., Mena, A., ... Stow, D. A. V. (2019). Key evidence for distal turbiditic- and bottom-current interactions from tubular turbidite infills. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 533, . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2019.109233