The application of malacological analysis in the study of slope deposits: late Pleistocene and Holocene of the Podhale Basin (Carpathians, Poland).

Witold Paweł Alexandrowicz


Slope deposits developed on calcareous sandstone and limestone formations in the eastern part of the Podhale Basin (Carpathians) were studied. In total, the analysis included fifteen profiles of such sediments, which revealed the presence of abundant malacofaunas comprising 39 mollusc species. Five faunistic assemblages differing in species composition and structure were defined in the material studied. Individual assemblages correspond to different climatic and environmental conditions, thereby making it possible to interpret the features of the sedimentary environments and specify the age of the deposits. Faunas with Pupilla loessica and Pupilla sterri containing species typical of loess formations are characteristic of deposits from the coldest phase of the last Glacial period (MIS 2). A fauna with Vertigo genesii, with a large proportion of cold-loving and moisture-loving taxa, is typical of the Younger Dryas. Associations that are dominated by shade-loving species, with Discus ruderatus and Discus perspectivus, correspond to the early and middle Holocene respectively. The investigations show that malacological analysis can be successfully applied to the research into slope deposits, enabling both the depositional conditions and the age of the sediments to be determined.


Molluscs; Molluscan assemblage; Slope deposits; Late Pleistocene; Holocene; Southern Poland

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