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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That activated charcoal, activated carbon is a granular material usually produced by the roasting of cellulose base substances, such as wood or coconut shells, in the absence of air. it has an extremely porous structure and is used in water conditioning as an adsorbent for organic matter and certain dissolved gases [6]. it is especially useful for adsorbing tracer dyes.?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for dominance (Keyword) returned 34 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 34
Hardness Controls of Cave Drips, Murray Cave, Cooleman Plain, Kosciusko National Park, 1979, Jennings, J. N.

Drips in the forward part of the Murray Cave between 5 and 50m below the surface were sampled about once a month for 2 years, carbon dioxide in the soil above and in the cave air being measured also. Mean soil CO2 content was fifteen times atmospheric, summer yeilding higher values than winter though the dry 1972-3 summer had low values. Greater depths in the soil had more CO2 than shallower ones. Cave air had on the average little more CO2 than the atmosphere but river flooding of the cave was followed by large CO2 fluctuations. There was a slight tendency for drips to be warmer and to vary less in temperature inwards. Drip pH was greater in summer than winter because of high CO2 production. The (Ca+Mg)/(Na+K) ratio of the drips was nearly ten times that of the Blue Waterholes, showing that igneous rock weathering around the Plain supplies more of the Na and K in the spring output than was envisaged before. The drip Mg/Ca ratio lies close to that of the Blue Waterholes, underlining the dominance of the limestone in the output hydrochemistry. The mean total hardness of 141 mg.L-1, not significantly different from earlier Murray cave drip measurements, sustains the previous estimate that the superficial zone provides about 2/3 of the limestone solution. The summer value (149 mg.L-1) is significantly greater than the winter mean (132 mg.L-1), including high values in the dry 1972-3 summer when CO2 values were low. Lagged correlation on a weekly and three weekly basis of individual drip hardness on air temperature and precipitation yielded few significant results. Only a weak case for dominance of hardness by temperature through rhizosphere CO2 was evident but neither was the conflicting hypothesis of hardness in such contradictory ways that more detailed observations over equally long time periods are necessary to elucidate their influence.

Hydrogeological conditions in the Middle East, 1982, Burdon Dj,
The geology of Middle East is summarized under the subheadings: Precambrian basement, epicontinental sediments, geosynclinal and shelf deposits, Tertiary volcanics and Quaternary cover. The main tectonic episodes including epeirogenic movements, rifting and the Tertiary orogeny, are reviewed. The imposition of hydrometeorolocal and climatic conditions upon the regional geology provides the setting for the hydrogeological discussion. Five factors which influence infiltration to aquifers under conditions of low precipitation and high potential evaportranspiration are discussed. The predominance of fossil groundwater is the most striking hydrogeological phenomenon occurring on a regional scale in the Middle East. Its mode of formation during the pluvials is outlined and the isotopic evidence is reviewed. The main physical and chemical characteristics of fossil ground-waters are described. It is conservatively estimated that some 65 000 km3 of good- to medium-quality groundwater are stored in the great artesian basins of the Near East. These fossil ground-waters are a non-renewable natural resource. Current annual abstraction is, as yet, a small percentage of the total reserves but economic factors rather than the volume of reserves will determine the ultimate extent of their exploitation. The renewable groundwater resources of the Middle East tend, by comparison, to be of local rather than regional significance. Some originate outside the Middle East, coming in as surface flows in the Nile and Tigris-Euphrates and infiltrating into the sediments in and adjacent to the flood plains. Other renewable resources accumulate within the region where high precipitation and mountainous relief are associated. Such areas include the Djebel Akhdar of Cyrenacia, the Tertiary fold mountains from the Taurus through the Zagros to the Oman ranges, and the volcanic and basement highlands of Yemen, Asir and Ethiopa. Locally, in areas of lower precipitation, lenses of recent fresh groundwater float on regional more saline groundwater. In some areas subsurface flows towards and through wadi systems are also of importance

Barbuda--an emerging reef and lagoon complex on the edge of the Lesser Antilles island are, 1985, Brasier M, Donahue J,
The Pliocene to Holocene limestones of Barbuda have formed on a wide, shallow, outlying bank of the Lesser Antilles island arc, some 50 km east of the older axis of the Limestone Caribbees and 100 km east of the newer axis of the active Volcanic Caribbees. Contrasts with neighbouring islands of similar size include the lack of exposed igneous basement or mid-Tertiary sediments, the dominance of younger flat-lying carbonates, and the greater frequency of earthquake shocks. The history of emergence of the island has been studied through aerial reconnaissance, mapping, logging, hand coring, facies and microfacies analysis. These show a pattern of progressively falling high sea level stands (from more than 50 m down to the present level) on which are superimposed at least three major phases of subaerial exposure, when sea levels were close to, or below, their present level. This sequence can be summarized as follows: 1, bank edge facies (early Pliocene Highlands Formation) deposited at not more than c. 50-100 m above the present sea level; 2, emergence with moderate upwarping in the north, associated with the Bat Hole subaerial phase forming widespread karst; 3, older Pleistocene transgression with fringing reefs and protected bays formed at l0 to l5 m high sea level stands (Beazer Formation); 4, Marl Pits subaerial phase with widespread karst and soil formation; 5, late Pleistocene transgression up to m high stand with fringing and barrier reefs, protected backreefs and bays (Codrington Formation Phase I); 6, gradual regression resulting in emergence of reefs, enclosure of lagoons, and progradation of beach ridges at heights falling from c. 5 m to below present sea level (Codrington Phase II); 7, Castle Bay subaerial phase produced karst, caliche and coastal dunes that built eastwards to below present sea level; and 8, Holocene transgression producing the present mosaic, with reefs, lagoons and prograding beach ridge complexes, with the present sea level reached before c. 4085 years BP. The evidence suggests that slight uplift took place in the north of the island after early Pliocene times. Subsequent shoreline fluctuations are consistent with glacio-eustatic changes in sea level, indicating that the island has not experienced significant uplift during the Quaternary

Chemical hydrogeology in natural and contaminated environments, 1989, Back W, Baedecker Mj,
Chemical hydrogeology, including organic and inorganic aspects, has contributed to an increased understanding of groundwater flow systems, geologic processes, and stressed environments. Most of the basic principles of inorganic-chemical hydrogeology were first established by investigations of organic-free, regional-scale systems for which simplifying assumptions could be made. The problems of groundwater contamination are causing a shift of emphasis to microscale systems that are dominated by organic-chemical reactions and that are providing an impetus for the study of naturally occurring and manmade organic material. Along with the decrease in scale, physical and chemical heterogeneity become major controls.Current investigations and those selected from the literature demonstrate that heterogeneity increases in importance as the study site decreases from regional-scale to macroscale to microscale. Increased understanding of regional-scale flow systems is demonstrated by selection of investigations of carbonate and volcanic aquifers to show how application of present-day concepts and techniques can identify controlling chemical reactions and determine their rates; identify groundwater flow paths and determine flow velocity; and determine aquifer characteristics. The role of chemical hydrogeology in understanding geologic processes of macroscale systems is exemplified by selection of investigations in coastal aquifers. Phenomena associated with the mixing zone generated by encroaching sea water include an increase in heterogeneity of permeability, diagenesis of minerals, and formation of geomorphic features, such as caves, lagoons, and bays. Ore deposits of manganese and uranium, along with a simulation model of ore-forming fluids, demonstrate the influence of heterogeneity and of organic compounds on geochemical reactions associated with genesis of mineral deposits. In microscale environments, importance of heterogeneity and consequences of organic reactions in determining the distributions and concentrations cf. constituents are provided by several studies, including infiltration of sewage effluent and migration of creosote in coastal plain aquifers. These studies show that heterogeneity and the dominance of organically controlled reactions greatly increase the complexity of investigations

Palustrine carbonates are shallow fresh-water deposits showing evidence of subaqueous deposition and subaerial exposure. These facies are common in the geological record. The intensity of modification is highly variable depending on the climate and the length of emergence. Palustrine limestones have previously been interpreted as marginal lacustrine deposits from fluctuating, low-salinity carbonate lakes, but several problems remain with existing facies models: 1) palustrine carbonates possess a lacustrine biota but commonly display fabrics similar to those of calcretes and peritidal carbonates; 2) the co-occurrence of calcrete horizons and karst-like cavities is somewhat unusual and appears to indicate contemporaneous carbonate precipitation and dissolution in the vadose zone; 3) the dominance of gray colors indicates water-saturation, apparently inconsistent with the evidence for strong desiccation overprint; 4) profundal lake deposits are generally absent from palustrine sequences, and sublittoral facies commonly make up only a small proportion of total thicknesses; 5) no good modem analogue has been identified for the palustrine environment. Analogy with the Florida Everglades suggests a re-interpretation of palustrine limestones, not as pedogenically modified lake margin facies but as the deposits of extensive, very shallow carbonate marshes. The distribution of environments in the Everglades is determined by the local hydrology, reflecting the control of seasonal water-level fluctuations and topography. Climate and topography were the main controls on deposition of ancient palustrine carbonates. As in peritidal sequences, aggradational cycles are capped by a range of lithologies (evaporites, desiccation and microkarst breccias, calcretes, lignite or coal horizons etc.), permitting interpretation of the climate. Careful analysis of lateral facies variations may permit reconstruction of subtle topography. Consideration of the Florida Everglades as a modem analogue for the palustrine environment has suggested the development of an exposure index for fresh-water carbonates

The discharge variability of some karst springs in Bulgaria has been investigated in detail within a region situated in the semiarid zone where most of the principal processes controlling spring outflow (evapotranspiration, snow accumulation, karstic functioning) are significant. While the karstification was notable in the Kotel and Bistretz springs with a predominance of quickflow, in the Beden system the baseflow was higher and had a behaviour similar to a porous aquifer. Univariate and bivariate spectral analyses were applied as a suitable tool in preparation for a further application of precipitation-discharge relationship models

Karst Geomorphology and Hydrogeology of the Northeastern Mackenzie Mountains, District of Mackenzie, N.W.T., PhD Thesis, 1995, Hamilton, James P.

This thesis describes the geomorphology and hydrogeology of karst systems in portions of the northeastern Canyon Ranges of the Mackenzie Mountains and the Norman Range of the Franklin Mountains. N.W.T. In the region, mean annual temperatures are -6 to -8°C, total annual precipitation is 325 to 500 mm, and permafrost has a widespread to continuous distribution. The area was glaciated in the Late Wisconsinan by the Laurentide Ice Sheet.
The Canyon Ranges and Norman Range are composed of a sequence of faulted and folded miogeoclinal sedimentary rocks that span the Proterozoic to Eocene. The geology is reviewed with an emphasis on strata that display karst. Included are several dolomite and limestone formations, two of which are interbedded with evaporites in the subsurface. The principal groundwater aquifer is the Lower Devonian Bear Rock Formation. In subcrop, the Bear Rock Formation is dolomite and anhydrite, outcrops are massive calcareous solution breccias. This is the primary karst rock.
The regional distribution and range of karst landforms and drainage systems are described. Detailed mapping is presented from four field sites. These data were collected from aerial photography and ground surveys. The karst has examples of pavement, single and compound dolines, subsidence troughs, polje, sinking streams and lakes. and spring deposits. The main types of depressions are subsidence and collapse dolines. Doline density is highest on the Bear Rock Formation. Surficial karst is absent of less frequent in the zone of continuous permafrost or outside the glacial limit.
At the field sites, water samples were collected at recharge and discharge locations. Samples were analyzed for a full range of ionic constituents and many for natural isotopes. In addition, several springs were monitored continuously for discharge, temperature, and conductivity. Dye tracing established linkages between recharge and discharge at some sites. These data are summarized for each site, as is the role of permafrost in site hydrology.
The relationships between geological structure, topography, ,and groundwater systems are described. Conduit aquifers are present in both dolomite and limestone. These systems are characterized by discharge waters of low hardness and dissolved ion content. Aquifers in the Bear Rock Formation have a fixed flow regime and often have highly mineralized discharge. At the principal field site. there was a time lag of 40 to 60 days between infiltration and discharge in this unit. At a second site, flow through times were on the order of years. Variability in these systems is attributed to bedrock properties and boundary conditions.
Preliminary rates of denudation are calculated from the available hydrochemical data. Total solutional denudation at the primary field site is approximately 45 m³ kmˉ² aˉ¹ (mm kaˉ¹). The majority is attributed to the subsurface dissolution of halite and anhydrite. The predominance of subsurface dissolution is linked to the high frequency of collapse and subsidence dolines and depressions.
The karst features and drainage systems of the northern Mackenzie Mountains date to the Tertiary. Glaciation has had a stimulative effect on karst development through the subglacial degradation of permafrost and the altering of boundary conditions by canyon incision.

The Lower Triassic Montney Formation, west-central Alberta, 1997, Davies Gr, Moslow Tf, Sherwin Md,
The Lower Triassic Montney Formation was deposited in a west-facing, arcuate extensional basin, designated the Peace River Basin, on the northwestern margin of the Supercontinent Pangea, centred at about 30 degrees N paleolatitude. At least seasonally arid climatic conditions, dominance of northeast trade winds, minimum fluvial influx, offshore coastal upwelling, and north to south longshore sediment transport affected Montney sedimentation. Paleostructure, particularly highs over underlying Upper Devonian Leduc reefs and lows associated with graben trends in the Peace River area, strongly influenced Montney depositional and downslope mass-wasting processes. A wide range of depositional environments in the Montney is recorded by facies ranging from mid to upper shoreface sandstones, to middle and lower shoreface HCS sandstones and coarse siltstones, to finely laminated lower shoreface sand and offshore siltstones. and to turbidites. Dolomitized coquinal facies occur at seven stratigraphic horizons in the Montney. Some coquinas are capped by karst breccias and coarse-grained aeolian deflation lag sand residues indicating subaerial exposure. The Montney has been divided into three informal members that have been dated by palynology and compared with global Early Triassic sequences. The subdivisions are: the Lower member, of Griesbachian to Dienerian age, correlated with a third-order cycle; the Coquinal Dolomite Middle member, of mixed Dienerian and Smithian ages; and the Upper member, of Smithian to Spathian age, correlative with two, shorter-duration third-order cycles. A forced regressive wedge systems tract model is adopted for deposition of the Coquinal Dolomite Middle member and for turbidites in the Valhalla-La Glace area of west-central Alberta. With this model, coquinas and turbidites accumulated during falling base level to lowstand, with a basal surface of forced regression at the base of the coquina and a sequence boundary at the top of the coquinal member. This is supported by the evidence for subaerial exposure and maximum lowstand at the top of the coquina. Very limited grain size distribution in the Montney, dominantly siltstone to very fine-grained sandstone, but often very well sorted, is interpreted to reflect an aeolian influence on sediment source and transport, High detrital feldspar and detrital dolomite in the Montney are consistent with (but not proof of) aeolian source from an arid interior, as is high detrital mica content in finer size grades. Extensive and often pervasive dolomitization, and early anhydrite cementation within the Montney, are also consistent with an arid climatic imprint. As new exploratory drilling continues to reveal the wide range of facies in the Montney, it adds to both the complexity and potential of this relatively unique formation in western Canada

Palaeoclimatic interpretation of stable isotope data from Holocene speleothems of the Waitomo district, North Island, New Zealand, 1999, Williams P. W. , Marshall A. , Ford D. C. , Jenkinson A. V. ,
One straw stalactite and three stalagmites from the Waitomo district of North Island, New Zealand, were examined for stable isotopes of oxygen and carbon with a view to interpreting their palaeoclimate signal. Dating was by uranium series and AMS 14C for the stalagmites and by gamma-ray spectrometry for the straw. Records were thus established for about 100 years for the straw and 3.9, 10.1 and 10.2 ka for the stalagmites. The range of variability in d18Oc and d13Cc this century is about two-thirds of that experienced over the entire Holocene, and is most simply explained in terms of the oceanic source area of rain. Stable isotope variations in three stalagmites show some general similarities, but have significant differences in detail, which underlines the necessity to base palaeoclimatic interpretations on more than one speleothem record. The d18Oc of each stalagmite varies positively with temperature, indicating the dominance of the ocean source of evaporation in determining the isotopic composition of precipitation and hence speleothem calcite in the Holocene. This conclusion is contrary to that of other authors working in New Zealand, who identified a negative relationship between d18Oc and temperature, while examining time periods extending across the Last Glacial Maximum. It is concluded here that, whereas the ice volume effect dominates the large climatic shifts of glacial-interglacial amplitude, the oceanic source effect becomes more important during the period of relatively stable sea level during the Holocene. Results also indicate a late-Holocene altitudinal effect of 0.2{per thousand} d18Oc per 100 m and an associated temperature relationship of about 0.26{per thousand} per{degrees}C. The average of two records identifies the postglacial climatic optimum to lie in the interval from prior to 10 ka BP to 7.5 ka BP, when d18Oc values were up to 0.6{per thousand} less negative than present, implying an average annual mean temperature that was up to 2.3{degrees}C warmer. The average of three speleothem records for the last 3900 years reveals the coldest period of the Holocene to have occurred about 3 to 2 ka BP, when d18Oc values were typically 0.4{per thousand} more negative than present and average temperatures may have been 1.5{degrees}C cooler. Mean annual temperature variability of about 2{degrees}C was sometimes experienced in little more than 100 years

The initiation of hypogene caves in fractured limestone by rising thermal water: investigation of a parallel series of competing fractures, 1999, Dumont K. A. , Rajaram H. , Budd D. A.
Integrated cave systems can either form at or near the surface of the earth (epigenic) or at some depth below the earth's surface (hypogenic)For caves that form in fractured limestone, the two most common types of cave-system morphologies are branchwork and mazeworkBranchwork caves are composed of tributaries that coalesce in the downstream direction, similar to surface streamsMazework caves exhibit two or more sets of parallel passages intersecting in a grid-like patternThe majority of epigenic caves exhibit branchwork morphologies, which represent the dominance of individual flow pathsIn contrast, mazework caves develop when dissolution occurs along numerous flow pathsWhereas most epigenic caves are related to surficial meteoric flow systems, some mazework caves are thought to have formed in hypogene environments where rising thermal water cools in response to the geothermal gradientOur objective is to examine the fundamental cause for the difference in morphology between epigenic and thermal hypogenic cave systems using numerical modelsIn particular, we are examining the competition between different flow paths in fractured limestone undergoing dissolutional enlargementAs noted in previous numerical studies, epigenic systems are characterized by the dominance of a single flow path, which is consistent with the structure of epigenic cavesSo, in order to explain the structure of maze caves, one has to explain why no single flow path attains dominanceThe retrograde solubility of calcite coupled with heat transfer from the fluid to the rock is hypothesized to provide the mechanism by which dissolutional power is distributed among all competing flow pathsNumerical models of fluid flow, heat transfer, and calcite dissolution chemistry are integrated to develop a model of hypogene cave initiation in fractured limestoneFlow is assumed to occur in the presence of a spatially variable rock temperature field that is constant through timePreliminary numerical modeling results for a system of parallel fractures demonstrate the differences in the nature of competition between flow paths in epigenic (constant temperature) and hypogenic systems (flow in the presence of a negative thermal gradient)Differences in results using various kinetic models for calcite dissolution are also presentedThe role of aperture variation and distribution in a parallel set of fractures is also examined

Determination of the sources of nitrate contamination in karst springs using isotopic and chemical indicators, 2001, Panno S. V. , Hackley K. C. , Hwang H. H. , Kelly W. R. ,
The sources of nitrate (NO3-) in groundwater of the shallow karst aquifer in southwestern Illinois' sinkhole plain were investigated using chemical and isotopic techniques. The groundwater in this aquifer is an important source of potable water for about half of the residents of the sinkhole plain area. Previous work has shown that groundwater from approximately 18% of the wells in the sinkhole plain has NO3- concentrations in excess of the USEPA's drinking water standard of 10 mg N/1 Relative to background levels, the NO3- concentrations in water from 52% of the wells, and probably all of the springs in the study area, are anomalously high, suggesting that sources other than naturally occurring soil organic matter have contributed additional NO3- to groundwater in the shallow karst aquifer. This information, and the dominance of agriculture in the study area, suggest that agrichemical contributions may be significant. To test this hypothesis, water samples from 10 relatively large karst springs were collected during four different seasons and analyzed for inorganic constituents, dissolved organic carbon, atrazine, and delta (15) N and delta O-18 of the NO3- ions. The isotopic data were most definitive and suggested that the sources of NO3- in spring water are dominated by N-fertilizer with some possible influence of atmospheric NO3- and, to a much lesser extent, human and/or animal waste. Differences in the isotopic composition of NO3- and some of the chemical characteristics were observed during the four consecutive seasons in which spring water samples were collected. Isotopic values for delta N-15 and delta O-18 of the NO3- ranged from 3.2%o to 19.1%o and from 7.2%o to 18.7%o respectively. The trend of delta N-15 and delta O-18 data for NO3- also indicated that a significant degree of denitrification is occurring in the shallow karst hydrologic system (within the soil zone, the epikarst and the shallow karst aquifer) prior to discharging to springs. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

Karst and caves of Israel, 2001, Frumkin, A.
Israel displays a gradient of karst features from the intensive karstification of Lebanon in the north to practically no karst in Elat region at the southern Negev desert (Gerson, 1976). This is attributed mainly to the climatological gradient from alpine-Mediterranean climate in the Lebanon - Hermon mountains in the north, with precipitation >1000 mm/year, to the extremely arid southern Negev, with <50 mm/year. Another factor is the southward decrease in carbonates/clastics ratio of the phanerozoic stratigraphic section, due to the increasing distance from the Tethys Sea which deposited the significant carbonates. Carbonate rocks outcrop in some 75% of the hilly regions of Israel. They are predominantly of Jurassic to Eocene age. However, much of the carbonates contain marls which inhibit extensive karst development, promoting the dominance of fluviokarst features. Another inhibiting factor is the abundance of faults in the Hermon, Galil and Shomeron regions. The faults are thought to constrain the temporal and spatial continuous underground flow, limiting the development of large caves in these regions. Most limestone caves are relict phreatic conduits and voids, which do not show any genetic relation to subaerial topography. Today these caves are either dry or experience vadose dripwater. These caves have possibly developed under moister conditions than predominate today. Some of them have been sealed from the surface until opened by recent construction activity. They may contain valuable paleoclimatic records (Frumkin, et al., 1994). Vadose caves are also common, and typically experience some water flow and active dissolution during the rainy season. These are mostly composed of vertical shafts with rare horizontal sections. The unique rock salt karst of Mount Sedom exhibits the largest salt caves known in the world. Some sea caves, attributed mainly to wave action with limited dissolution appear in the 'Kurkar' sandstone ridge along the Mediterranean coast. Paleokarst is common in the stratigraphic section, and is probably related to humid paleoclimates. Israel is especially rich in man made caves sustaining abundant fauna, but are beyond the scope of this review.

Contact karst of Southern Velebit (Croatia), 2001, Perica Draž, En, Buzjak Nenad

Due to the predominance of soluble and broken carbonate beds on Velebit Mt., karst is main relief type there. But there also contact karst or fluviokarst occurs. It is developed in the parts where the alternation of permeable carbonate and less permeable or impermeable Carboniferous, Permian and Triassic beds occurs. Most significant contact karst forms in the area of Southern Velebit are Oštarijsko polje, Crno vrilo creek blind valley and Bunovac valley.

Les travertins de Saint-Antonin : squence gobotanique et climato-anthropique holocne (Bouches-du-Rhne, France), 2003, Guendon Jeanlouis, Ali Adam A. , Roiron Paul, Terral Jeanfrdric, Danna Andr, Diazdelolmo Fernando, Baenaescudero Rafael
Travertine deposit of St-Antonin (Bouches-du-Rhne, France): lithostratigraphy, palaeobotany and Holocene palaeoenvironments - Travertines are carbonate deposits formed generally during temperate climatic periods. The travertine of Saint-Antonin was formed during the Holocene in accordance with this model. They usually present a succession of travertinous units and detrital sedimentary levels containing, respectively, leaf impressions and charcoal; snail shells and archaeological material have also been preserved, essentially in detritial levels. Two kinds of plant remains (leaf imprints and charred wood) have been sampled and analysed, allowing the reconstruction of vegetation dynamics based on a well-defined sedimentary sequence. Our results were compared with those of previous malacalogical, archaeological studies and climatic changes. The Preboreal and Boreal sequence, characterised by travertine unites with detritial deposits, is dominated by a riverside vegetation (Populus alba, Salix sp., Phragmites communis) associated with some pubescent oak growing in the plateau. After this first period, detritial levels and hygrophilous species decrease. Correlatively travertinous facies and leaf impressions of mesophilous forest species increase (Quercus pubescent, Acer monspessulanum). They suggest the existence of homeostatic conditions, such as regular river flow, dense vegetation and few disturbances during deposition. The Middle Atlantic period shows optimal travertinisation and maintenance of forest environment. But this period is characterised by the beginning of the Quercus pubescens regression and the dominance of Acer monspessulanum. From the Atlantic to the first part of Subboreal, important detrital sedimentary levels disturb the deposition of carbonate. They contain reworked archaeological material dating to the Neolithic. Vegetation seems to have been profoundly affected by intensive human exploitation. This process has broken up the forested area into different plant communities and favoured the dominance of heliophilous and thermophilous species (Pinus halepensis, Rubus ulmifolius and Juniperus sp.).

The Barremian-Aptian Evolution of The Eastern Arabian Carbonate Platform Margin (Northern Oman), 2003, Hillgartner Heiko, Van Buchem Frans S. P. , Gaumet Fabrice, Razin Philippe, Pittet Bernard, Grotsch Jurgen, Droste Henk,
Carbonate platform margins are sensitive recorders of changes in sea level and climate and can reveal the relative importance of global and regional controls on platform evolution. This paper focuses on the Barremian to Aptian interval (mid Cretaceous), which is known for climatic and environmental changes towards more intensified greenhouse conditions. The study area in the northern Oman mountains offers one of the very few locations where the Cretaceous carbonate margin of the Arabian Plate can be studied along continuous outcrops. Our detailed sedimentological and sequence stratigraphic model of the platform margin demonstrates how major environmental and ecological changes controlled the stratigraphic architecture. The Early Cretaceous platform margin shows high rates of progradation in Berriasian to Hauterivian times followed by lower rates and some aggradation in the Late Hauterivian to Barremian. High-energy bioclastic and oolitic sands were the dominant deposits at the margin. Turbidites were deposited at the slope and in the basin. The Early Aptian platform margin shows a marked change to purely aggradational geometries and a welldeveloped platform barrier that was formed mainly by microbial buildups. The sudden dominance in microbial activity led to cementation and stabilization of the margin and slope and, therefore, a decrease of downslope sediment transport by turbidites. In the Late Aptian, large parts of the Arabian craton were subaerially exposed and a fringing carbonate platform formed. Seven Barremian to Early Albian large-scale depositional sequences reflecting relative sea-level changes are identified on the basis of time lines constrained by physical correlation and biostratigraphy. The reconstruction of the margin geometries suggests that tectonic activity played an important role in the Early Aptian. This was most likely related to global plate reorganization that was accompanied by increased volcanic activity in many parts of the world. Along the northeastern Arabian platform the associated global changes in atmospheric and oceanic circulation are recorded with a change in platform-margin ecology from an ooid-bioclast dominated to a microbial dominated margin. Time-equivalent argillaceous deposits suggest an increase in rainfall and elevated input of nutrients onto the platform. This process contributed to the strongly diminished carbonate production by other organisms and favored microbial activity. The platform margin may thus represent a shallow-marine response to the Early Aptian global changes, commonly associated with an oceanic anoxic event in basinal environments

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