The age of the Tashinga Formation (Karoo Supergroup) in the mid-Zambezi basin, Zimbabwe and the first Phytosaur from mainland sub-Saharan Africa

Paul M. Barrett, Lara Sciscio, Pia A. Viglietti, Timothy J. Broderick, Celina A. Suarez, Glenn R. Sharman, Andrew S. Jones, Darlington Munyikwa, Steve F. Edwards, Kimberley E.j. Chapelle, Kathleen N. Dollman, Michel Zondo, Jonah N. Choiniere

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
299 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Correlations between continental sequences within the Karoo-aged basins of southern and eastern Africa are difficult due to the dearth of shared index fossils and a lack of radioisotopic dates for key formations. Here we describe four sites along the southeastern shoreline of Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe, within the Mid-Zambezi Basin, that yield material of phytosaurs (Archosauromorpha: Phytosauria) from within the informal Tashinga Formation (Upper Karoo Group). These phytosaur remains are the first to be recovered from sub-Saharan mainland Africa, representing a major geographic range extension for this group into high southern latitudes. Furthermore, an LA-ICPMS maximum depositional age of 209.2 ± 4.5 Ma (late Norian/early Rhaetian) derived from detrital zircons provides the first absolute age estimate for any of these sites. The phytosaurs are associated with lungfish and metoposaurid amphibians, forming part of a terrestrial-aquatic dominated biota, a previously undocumented biome from the Late Triassic of southern Africa.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)445-460
Number of pages16
JournalGondwana Research
Volume81
Early online date16 Jan 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2020

Keywords

  • Gondwana
  • Karoo
  • Late Triassic
  • Phytosauria
  • Zimbabwe

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The age of the Tashinga Formation (Karoo Supergroup) in the mid-Zambezi basin, Zimbabwe and the first Phytosaur from mainland sub-Saharan Africa'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this