Paleoalterações e Carbonatos em Depósitos Aluviais na Região de Santa Maria, Triássico Médio a Superior do Sul do Brasil
Palavras-chave:weathering, carbonate, Triassic.
Five types of paleo-weathering and carbonate precipitation were recognized in fine-grained deposits of the Alemoa Member, Santa Maria Formation, Middle to Upper Triassic of southern Brazil. The fauna and flora found in these lithologies are important dating tools, but only in a generic way, misleading the time involved in periods of deposition and non deposition. The identified types of deposits are (i) reddish mudstones, with none or little paleo-weathering, (ii) mottled mudstones, with incipient pedogenesis, mainly mottling, destratification, animal and vegetal colonization, (iii) carbonate veins, with more evidences of exposure and root action, (iv) carbonate siltstones/sandstones, where restricted fluvial deposits are cemented by phreatic carbonate, and (v) carbonate nodules and lenses, in which small lenses of a very compact calcrete are at the top and in the center of carbonated siltstone/sandstone beds, distinguished by its crystalinity, hardness and brighter color. The recorded microfacies point to a cyclic variation of the mainly high phreatic level, forming cracks and pedotubules (pedogenesis) filled with carbonate and Fe and Mn oxides (phreatic). The identification of five distinct pedofacies and the stratigraphic correlation in the sedimentary package of the Alemoa Member (base, middle or topmost position) suggest a probable association of paleo-weathering processes and vertebrate preservation. Near channel facies, mainly at the base and top, present smaller exposure periods and higher variations on the phreatic level, and consequently, the best preserved vertebrate fossils. On the other hand, facies which are far from the channel, record more subaerial exposure and more significant phreatic variation, leading to more advanced (although still incipient) paleo-weathering and carbonate precipitation, and to a worst fossil preservation.