Proposed GSSP for the base of Cambrian Stage 10 at the lowest occurrence of Eoconodontus notchpeakensis in the House Range, Utah, USA

James F. Miller, Robert L. Ripperdan, James D. Loch, Rebecca L. Freeman, Kevin R. Evans, John F. Taylor, Zachary C. Tolbart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The lowest occurrence of the conodont Eoconodontus notchpeakensis (Miller, 1969) has been proposed as the base of Cambrian Stage 10. The horizon is recognized in three sections in the House Range, western Utah, USA in the lower part of the Red Tops Member of the Notch Peak Formation. This horizon fits within a tightly integrated framework that includes conodont, trilobite, and brachiopod biozonations, as well as carbon-isotope stratigraphy and sequence stratigraphy. The proposed horizon is the base of the Eoconodontus conodont Zone. This horizon is in the lower part of the Saukiella junia Subzone of the Saukia trilobite Zone and is near the top of the Billingsella brachiopod Zone. The HERB Event is a high-amplitude, negative carbon-isotope excursion that has been identified in Laurentia, Australia, China, and Argentina. The start of the excursion is at a negative carbon-isotope peak that is less than half a metre above the base of the E. notchpeakensis Subzone, and the highest-amplitude peak of the HERB Event is near the middle of that relatively thin subzone. The HERB Event has been identified in strata with minimal faunal data, providing the possibility of identifying the base of Stage 10 in nearly unfossiliferous strata. The Notch Peak Formation has been divided into a detailed sequence-stratigraphic framework within a lithostratigraphic context, and some of the sequence boundaries have been identified in Australia and China. Conodonts diagnostic of the Eoconodontus Zone have been identified at 54 localities around the world, including in a succession of Cambrian deep-ocean radiolarian cherts. The Utah conodont zonation has been identified across Laurentia and in other parts of the world in facies ranging from continental slope to nearshore sandstone deposits. The variety of correlation tools and the integration of diverse data produce a superior framework for correlation of the proposed base of Stage 10 and for correlation of many horizons within Stage 10.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-211
Number of pages13
JournalAnnales de Paleontologie
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank John Cutler for field assistance in Utah over many years. Ben Dattilo and Peg Rees helped collect some of the trilobites whose ranges are shown on Fig. 8 . Michelle Miller and Mario Daoust provided French translations of parts of this manuscript. Dong Xi-ping and an anonymous reviewer contributed many helpful comments that improved the final text. Miller acknowledges financial support from National Science Foundation grants EAR 8108621, EAR 8407281, and EAR 8804352 , as well as several Faculty Research Grants from Missouri State University . Evans acknowledges support from a Missouri State University Faculty Research Grant. Taylor's work was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation (EAR 9902812 and EAR 1325333), the IUP University Senate Research Committee, and Faculty Professional Development Committee of the PASSHE.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.


  • Brachiopods
  • Cambrian Stage 10
  • Carbon-isotopes
  • Conodonts
  • Trilobites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Paleontology


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