Corroborating the existence of a UAZ6 (Unitary Association Zone, a means of biostratigraphic correlation). See the paper linked below. Characterized by the ammonoid Psudosageceras augustum (Brayard & Bucher, 2008) in association with Xenoceltites subevolutus Spath 1930. Found in rocks previously assigned to the Induan (lower Lower Triassic) Dinwoody Fm., now assigned to the Olenekian (upper Lower Triassic, top of Smithian) Thaynes Group.
|Pseudosageceras augustum left and Xenoceltites subevolutus right|
|Xenoceltites subevolutus left and Pseudosageceras augustum right|
In press, Pre-Proof Article in GEOBIOS
The late Smithian extinction represents a major event within the Early Triassic. This event generally corresponds to a succession of two and possibly three successively less diverse, cosmopolitan ammonoid assemblages, which when present, provide a robust biostratigraphic framework and precise correlations at different spatial scales. In the western USA basin, known occurrences of latest Smithian taxa are rare and until now, have only been documented from northeastern Nevada. Based on these restricted basinal occurrences, a regional zone representing the latest Smithian was postulated but not corroborated, as representative taxa had not yet been reported from outside Nevada. Here we document two new ammonoid assemblages from distant localities in northern Utah, overlying the late Smithian Anasibirites beds and characterized by the unambiguous co-occurrence of Xenoceltites subevolutus and Pseudosageceras augustum. The existence of a latest Smithian zone in the western USA basin is therefore validated, facilitating the identification of the Smithian/Spathian boundary and intra-basin correlation. This zone also correlates with the latest Smithian zone recognized from southern Tethyan basins. Additionally, these new data support other observed occurrences of Xenoceltites subevolutus throughout most of the late Smithian.