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Palynology of the Monterey Formation (Miocene) Phosphatic Facies at Lions Head, Santa Maria Area, California

Satish K. Srivastava
Palynology
Vol. 8 (1984), pp. 33-49
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3687475
Page Count: 17
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Palynology of the Monterey Formation (Miocene) Phosphatic Facies at Lions Head, Santa Maria Area, California
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Abstract

A rich palynomorph assemblage of early Miocene age was obtained from the phosphatic facies mudstone samples of the lower Monterey Formation exposed in the basal Lions Head section in the Santa Maria area, California. Angiosperm pollen of Acer, Achillea, Bombacaceae, Carya, Ericaceae, Onagraceae, Salix, and Ulmus occurs commonly. Among conifers, bisaccate Pinus pollen is well represented. Azolla glochidia and spores of Selaginella, Sphagnum, and Polypodium are sparse. Marine algae are represented abundantly by Pterospermella, Tytthodiscus, and several dinocysts, including Leptodinium, Operculodinium centrocarpum, Spiniferites, and Tuberculodinium vancampoae. The dinocyst assemblage, unstructured amorphous organic debris, and the lack of large spores support an offshore deep marine deposition under a prevailing warm temperate climate with an annual summer rainy season. The terrestrial source area encompassed freshwater pools and ponds in a marsh/swamp environment. Pine vegetation was present in elevated areas.

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