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The Lord Howe seamount chain on the western margin of Zealandia some 580 km off the east coast of Australia provides a suitable habitat for the growth of the southernmost coral reefs in the Pacific Ocean. The shelves around Middleton Reef, Lord Howe Island and Balls Pyramid represent carbonate depositional environments where calcareous microfossils are common and generally well preserved. While many of the organisms were originally carried to the islands by an offshoot from the East Australian Current, thus having many species in common with eastern Australia, the islands also exhibit a number of endemic species that have evolved locally over the last 6.5 million years.
The islands are now home to rich and well diversified foraminiferal, ostracod and micro-molluscan fauna, which have not been fully documented previously. This book provides an atlas of the microfossils from lagoonal, beach, shallow near-shore and deeper shelf environments around Middleton Reef, Lord Howe Island and Balls Pyramid. Many of the foraminifer and ostracod species can be directly related to the taxonomy and ecology of the foraminifer and ostracod fauna from southeastern Australian coastal and shallow marine environments that were described and illustrated by Yassini and Jones (1995).
About The Book: The first section of the book provides a general introduction about the development of the seamount chain, the location of the study area, its bathymetry, morphology and sedimentary facies. It does not assume any prior knowledge of the area or any exposure to the taxonomy or ecology of these organisms. It is expected to be useful in geological, environmental and marine science studies.
The main aim of this book is to provide a photographic atlas of all the recognised microfossil species from Lord Howe Island, Balls Pyramid and Middleton Reef. This will enable future researchers to reassess the assemblages and provide the basis for international comparisons with these faunas. The known depth and environmental parameters for each of the recognised species are presented in tabular form. It must be noted that this investigation is based on thanatocenose investigations and does not imply that each species necessarily lived in the environment in which it was found since it could have been affected by post-mortem transport.
University of Wollongong
Yassini, Iradj and Jones, Brian G., (2023), An Atlas of Foraminifera, Ostracoda and Micro-Molluscs around Lord Howe Island and Middleton Reef, University of Wollongong.