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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology

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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 fissure is an open joint or crack in rocks [16].?

Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms

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What is Karstbase?



Browse Speleogenesis Issues:

KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
See all featured articles
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;
See all featured articles from other geoscience journals

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Your search for west-indies (Keyword) returned 24 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 24 of 24
High-resolution temporal record of Holocene ground-water chemistry; tracing links between climate and hydrology, 1996,
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Banner Jl, Musgrove M, Asmerom Y, Edwards Rl, Hoff Ja,
Strontium isotope analysis of precisely dated calcite growth layers in Holocene speleothems from Barbados, West Indies, reveals high-resolution temporal variations in ground-water composition and may provide a new approach to documenting the links between climate variability and fluctuations in the hydrologic cycle such as recharge rates and flow paths. The speleothems grew in a cave that developed in a fresh-water aquifer in uplifted Pleistocene reef limestones. Three periods of ground-water Sr isotope evolution are observed: 87 Sr/ 86 Sr values decreased from 6 to 4 ka, increased from 4 to 1 ka, and decreased again after 1 ka. The Sr isotope oscillations appear to record periodic variations in the relative Sr fluxes to ground water from exchangeable soil sites vs. carbonate mineral reactions, as reflected in 87 Sr/ 86 Sr values of modern Barbados ground waters. A hydrologic model that explains changes in ground-water flow routes in karst aquifers as a function of amount of rainfall recharge can account for the speleothem Sr isotope record. Independent Holocene climate records that indicate a major period of aridity at around 1.3-1.1 ka in the American tropics correspond with periodic variations in rainfall on Barbados that are predicted by this hydrologic model

Scuba observations of standstill levels in Elba Island (ltaly) and in Marie-Galante (West Indies). A worldwide sequence?, 1999,
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Collinagirard J,
Scuba observations (0 to -60 m) in Provence and Corsica and new data from Elba Island (Italy) indicate the bathymetric location of eustatic erosion levels in the Mediterranean Sea. A general sketch is given (standstill levels at-ii m, -17 m, -25 m, -35 m, -45 m, -50 m/55 m, -100 m). Isotopic data suggest contemporaneity of -100 m and -55 m levels with the two slow-down phases of Holocene transgression documented in Barbados and Tahiti coring (MWP-1A and 1B). Transgression acceleration after 14 000 BP explains the conservation of these littoral morphologies. Tectonics or isostasic movements (never more than 5 m) are prooved by differences observed in different areas of the world

Geomicrobiology of caves: A review, 2001,
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Northup D. E. , Lavoie K. H. ,
In this article, we provide a review of geomicrobiological interactions in caves, which are nutrient-limited environments containing a variety of redox interfaces. Interactions of cave microorganisms and mineral environments lead to the dissolution of, or precipitation on, host rock and speleothems (secondary mineral formations). Metabolic processes of sulfur-, iron-, and manganese-oxidizing bacteria can generate considerable acidity, dissolving cave walls and formations. Examples of possible microbially influenced corrosion include corrosion residues (e.g., Lechuguilla and Spider caves, New Mexico, USA), moonmilk from a number of caves (e.g., Spider Cave, New Mexico, and caves in the Italian Alps), and sulfuric acid speleogenesis and cave enlargement (e.g., Movile Cave, Romania, and Cueva de Villa Luz, Mexico). Precipitation processes in caves, as in surface environments, occur through active or passive processes. In caves, microbially induced mineralization is documented in the formation of carbonates, moonmilk, silicates, clays, iron and manganese oxides, sulfur, and saltpeter at scales ranging from the microscopic to landscape biokarst. Suggestions for future research are given to encourage a move from descriptive, qualitative studies to more experimental studies

A possible heptaxodontine and other caviidan rodents from the quaternary of Jamaica, 2003,
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Macphee R. D. E. , Flemming C. ,
New World hystricognath rodents (parvorder Caviida) easily qualify as the most diversified members of the nonvolant Quaternary land mammal fauna of the West Indies. This paper describes three intriguing but problematic representatives of this group from Jamaican cave deposits. The first is the holotype (and still the only) specimen of Alterodon major from Wallingford Roadside Cave, a taxon that continues to generate controversy because specialists disagree as to its placement within Caviida. We reject the argument that it should be placed in Octodontidae and reaffirm the high probability that it is a clidomyine. The second fossil is a large proximal femur, apparently recovered from Sheep Pen locality near Windsor (Trelawney Parish) in the 1960s. Much larger than the femur of Clidomys (previously thought to be Jamaica's largest Quaternary mammal), in size and morphology the new fossil somewhat resembles femora of the eastern Caribbean heptaxodontine Amblyrhiza. Although firm allocation is not possible, the Sheep Pen femur is possibly that of a megafaunal caviidan. The third fossil described in this paper is the jaw of a previously unknown caviidan from a dated end-Pleistocene cave context in Portland Ridge (Jackson's Bay, Clarendon Parish). Xaymaca fulvopulvis, new genus and species, differs from all West Indian caviidan species presently known. The jaw is well preserved but retains only the incisor and premolar (the latter in a very worn state). The few features for which the new species can be usefully analyzed and compared to caviidan groups represented in the West Indian Cenozoic (capromyids, heteropsornyines, heptaxodontines, and clidomyines) are largely indecisive from a systematic perspective. However, on balance the strongest indicators seem to lie with the 'giant' heptaxodontines of the central and eastern Caribbean (the grouping composed of Amblyrhiza, Elasmodontomys, and possibly Quemisia), and despite its diminutive size Xaymaca is tentatively placed within that group. It is increasingly apparent that much still remains to be learned about the origin and history of the land mammal fauna of Jamaica

Temporal evolution of tertiary dolostones on Grand Cayman as determined by Sr-87/Sr-86, 2003,
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Jones B. , Luth R. W. ,
On the Cayman Islands, the Tertiary Bluff Group (Brac Formation, Cayman Formation, Pedro Castle Formation) is onlapped and overlain by the Pleistocene Ironshore Formation. On Grand Cayman, the Brac Formation and Cayman Formation are formed of finely crystalline dolostones; whereas the Pedro Castle Formation is formed of finely crystalline dolostones, dolomitized limestones, and limestones. No dolomite has been found in the Ironshore Formation. Dolostones in the Bluff Group, which retained their original depositional textures and lack evidence of any recrystallization, are formed of small (typically 5-15 mum long) interlocking, euhedral dolomite crystals. Dolomite cement is present in the Brac Formation and Cayman Formation but is very rare in the Pedro Castle Formation. Most of the dolomite crystals are characterized by oscillatory zoning with alternating zones of low-Ca calcian dolomite and high-Ca calcian dolomite. Grand Cayman is ideal for assessing the temporal evolution of Tertiary dolostones because the dolostones are young, have not been recrystallized, and are geographically isolated by the deep oceanic waters around the island. Interpretation of 158 new Sr-87/Sr-86 ratios from the dolostones in the Bluff Group indicate that the succession underwent three time-transgressive phases of dolomitization during the Late Miocene, the Late Pliocene, and Pleistocene. Petrographically similar dolomite was produced during each phase of dolomitization that was mediated by the same type of fluid and the same general conditions. Dolomitization was part of a dynamic cycle of processes that followed major lowstands. Karst development during the lowstands preconditioned the limestones for dolomitization by increasing their porosity and permeability. Thus, vast quantities of the dolomitizing fluids could freely circulate through the strata during the subsequent transgression. Dolomitization ceased once a stable highstand had been attained

Petrography of Finely Crystalline Cenozoic Dolostones as Revealed by Backscatter Electron Imaging: Case Study of the Cayman Formation (Miocene), Grand Cayman, British West Indies, 2003,
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Jones Brian, Luth Robert W. ,
Finely crystalline Cenozoic island dolostones, like those found in the Cayman Formation on Grand Cayman, are commonly assumed to be petrographically and compositionally homogeneous. Backscatter electron images (BSEI), however, show that the constituent dolomite crystals (< 100 {micro}m long and commonly < 20 {micro}m long) are commonly zoned with respect to their mol % CaCO3 content. Moreover, such images allow (1) depiction of growth patterns in the constituent crystals, irrespective of their origin, (2) recognition of replacive dolomite as opposed to dolomite cement, and (3) delineation of 'stratigraphic packages' in the dolomite cements that reflect different episodes of cementation. Integration of this information forms the basis for paragenetic interpretations of the dolostones. On Grand Cayman, the Miocene Cayman Formation can be divided into friable, high-porosity dolostones and hard, low-porosity dolostones. Backscatter electron images show that the hard dolostones are characterized by complex arrays of zoned dolomite cements that have occluded most of the pores. Caymanite, an internal sediment, has occluded many of the larger cavities. In contrast, the high-porosity dolostones contain little cement and no internal sediments. Precipitation of the cements and the deposition of internal sediments were related to the passage of large volumes of water through some of the dolostones. Thus, the hard, low-porosity dolostones are found in the 'cap rock' of the formation, in coastal locations, and in areas close to solution-widened fractures. Conversely, the friable, high-porosity dolostones form the lower 'porous unit' of the formation in the interior of the island, where the passage of water was more restricted

Karren features in Island Karst: Guam, Mariana Islands, 2004,
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Taborosi D. , Jenson J. W. , Mylroie J. E. ,
Dissolutional sculpturing (karren) in island karst terrain is distinct from karren in inland continental settings, whether temperate or tropical. Reef, lagoonal and eolian limestones that form most young carbonate islands are eogenetic, meaning they have not undergone significant diagenesis and exhibit high primary porosity and extreme heterogeneity. These lithologic qualities, combined with other characteristics of island karst, including the effects of autogenic recharge, tropical climate, and the proximity of the ocean, result in the development of unique karren forms. Highly irregular, composite karren forms are dominant, while linear forms, especially hydrodynamically shaped features, are rare or absent. The most common karren type on Guam is an assemblage of densely packed solution pits, separated by jagged ridges and sharp tips. It dominates the surfaces of all young reef limestones and ranges in texture from extremely jagged coastal forms, to somewhat more subdued inland features. It covers large areas, forming karrenfelds of jagged pit and pinnacle topography. Lacking a unique and accurate geomorphic term, this karren assemblage exists in a variety of similar forms, and its development is poorly understood. We propose the term 'eogenetic karren,' as it emphasizes the eogenetic nature of host limestone as the common factor controlling the development of variants of this karren type, while avoiding references to geographic settings or any of the poorly understood and variable genetic mechanisms. In addition to eogenetic karren, other forms of karren occur on carbonate islands but are limited to specific lithologic and environmental settings. Hydrodynamically-controlled features, dominant in interior continental settings of both classical temperate and tropical karsts, are nearly absent on Guam and similar islands, and form only locally in outcrops of dense, diagenetically mature, and recrystallized, limestones

Large kinetic isotope effects in modern speleothems, 2006,
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Mickler Patrick J. , Stern Libby A. , Banner Jay L. ,
The application of stable isotopes in speleothem records requires an understanding of the extent to which speleothem calcite isotopic compositions reflect the compositions of the cave waters from which they precipitate. To test for equilibrium precipitation, modern speleothem calcite was grown on glass plates, so that the carbon and oxygen isotope composition of the calcite and the water from which it precipitated could be directly compared. The plates were placed on the tops of three actively growing stalagmites that occupy a 1 m2 area in Harrison's Cave, Barbados, West Indies. Only some of the plate {delta}13C values and none of the plate {delta}18O values correspond to equilibrium values, indicating significant kinetic isotope effects during speleothem calcite growth. We investigate herein mechanisms that may account for the kinetic isotope effects. On each plate, speleothem calcite was deposited with distinct {delta}18O and {delta}13C compositions that increase progressively away from the growth axis, with up to 6.6{per thousand} 13C and 1.7{per thousand} 18O enrichments. The positive {delta}13C versus {delta}18O trends are likely a result of 18O and 13C Rayleigh-distillation enrichment in the HCO3- reservoir owing to progressive CO2 degassing and CaCO3 precipitation. The magnitude of the {delta}13C versus {delta}18O slope is likely controlled by the extent to which CO2 hydration-hydroxylation reactions buffer the oxygen isotope composition of the HCO3- reservoir during calcite precipitation. Complete oxygen isotopic buffering of the HCO3- reservoir by CO2 hydration-hydroxylation reactions will produce a vertical {delta}13C versus {delta}18O slope in calcite sampled along a growth layer. As oxygen isotope buffering of the HCO3- reservoir decreases to no buffering, the {delta}13C versus {delta}18O slope in calcite sampled along a growth layer will decrease from vertical to 0.52 at the cave temperature. In this study, modern speleothem calcite sampled along the growth layer produced a {delta}13C versus {delta}18O slope of 3.9, indicating incomplete oxygen isotope buffering of the HCO3- reservoir during calcite precipitation. Both modern and Holocene speleothem calcite from Barbados, sampled temporally along the growth axis, shows similar positive {delta}13C versus {delta}18O slopes. These results, along with the spatial variations in glass plate calcite carbon and oxygen isotope compositions, suggest that the isotopic composition of the Holocene speleothems is in part controlled by non-equilibrium isotope effects. In addition, there is a correlation between stalactite length and oxygen and carbon isotope ratios of calcite precipitated on the corresponding stalagmite and glass plate, which may be due to 13C and 18 O enrichment of the HCO3- reservoir during CO2 degassing-calcite precipitation along the overhanging stalactite. We compiled 165 published speleothem stable isotope records with a global distribution and found that most of these records show a positive covariation between {delta}13C and {delta}18O values. Speleothem stable isotope records may be influenced by kinetic isotope effects such that temperature-controlled equilibrium fractionation models alone cannot directly explain the significance of the variations in these records. Advancing the interpretation of these records requires the calibration of cave environmental conditions with the non-equilibrium isotope effects that cause {delta}13C and {delta}18O covariations in speleothems

Karst and Early Fracture Networks in Carbonates, Turks and Caicos Islands, British West Indies, 2007,
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Guidry Sean A. , Grasmueck Mark, Carpenter Daniel G. , Gombos Andrew M. Jr. , Bachtel Steven L. , Viggiano David A. ,
Historically, studies of Quaternary carbonates have not adequately addressed the influence of early fracture networks on diagenesis. Because of this lack of detail, understanding and predicting fracture-related diagenetic heterogeneities and preferential fluid flow pathways in ancient carbonate successions is particularly challenging. The Pleistocene oolitic grainstones of the Caicos platform provide an excellent opportunity to evaluate the relative importance of fractures on early diagenetic alteration styles, and are a suitable analog for subsurface carbonate reservoirs. Detailed analyses of fractures (e.g., orientation, aperture, spacing, fill material) from Caicos outcrops combined with high-resolution, three-dimensional ground-penetrating radar (3D GPR), assisted in exploring the causality and distribution of fractures and relationship to karst. Four models were evaluated to explain the observed distribution of dolines: (1) gravitational, fractured-margin controlled, (2) tectonic-fracture controlled, (3) antecedent-topography controlled, and (4) a hybrid model. Based on observations of numerous fractures (n = 306) on the western Caicos platform, early fractures are abundant and dominantly margin-parallel. These fracture networks are well established in limestones prior to mineralogical stabilization, thereby indicating that diagenetic heterogeneities evolve very early in carbonate diagenesis. The spatial distribution of dolines on Providenciales is likely the result of a complex interplay between the antecedent topography, margin-parallel fracture systems, and meteoric fluids. Resultant diagenetic alteration is far more complicated than simple, unconfined, meteoric lenses associated with topographic highs. Any attempts to model early diagenesis in carbonates should not dismiss the role of fractures as diagenetic facilitators and diagenetic anisotropy templates

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