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Communication of IUGS Geological Standards

Episodes 2022; 45(3): 309-331

Published online September 1, 2022


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

The Global Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for the base of the Capitanian Stage (Guadalupian, Middle Permian)

Shu-zhong Shen1*, Dong-xun Yuan2, Charles M. Henderson3, Lance L. Lambert4, Yi-chun Zhang5, Douglas H. Erwin6, Jahandar Ramezani7, Xiang-dong Wang1, Hua Zhang5, Qiong Wu1, Wen-qian Wang1, Jonena M. Hearst8, Jun Chen9,10, Yue Wang5, Wen-kun Qie5, Yu-ping Qi5, Bruce R. Wardlaw11

1 State Key Laboratory for Mineral Deposits Research, School of Earth Sciences and Engineering and Frontiers Science Center for Critical Earth Material Cycling, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023, China
2 School of Resources and Geosciences, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China
3 Department of Geoscience, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada
4 Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Texas at San Antonio, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249, USA
5 State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology and Center for Excellence in Life and Paleoenvironment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China
6 Department of Paleobiology, MRC-121, National Museum of Natural History, Washington, D.C. 20013-7012, USA
7 Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
8 Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Salt Flat, TX 79847, USA
9 State Key Laboratory of Isotope Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
10CAS Center for Excellence in Deep Earth Science, Guangzhou 510640, China

Correspondence to:*E-mail: szshen@nju.edu.cn

Received: November 20, 2021; Revised: February 10, 2022; Accepted: February 10, 2022

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Global Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) for the base of the Capitanian Stage was proposed in 1999 and defined by the first appearance datum (FAD) of the conodont Jinogondolella postserrata within the lineage J. aserrata→J. postserrata→J. shannoni at Nipple Hill in West Texas, USA. Despite its widespread recognition for more than two decades, the official GSSP paper was not published, nor have its index conodont fossils been properly documented. At Nipple Hill, only the uppermost 0.5 m of the Pinery Member belongs to the Capitanian Stage. J. postserrata first appears at 19.8 m above the base of the auxiliary Frijole section. Based on U-Pb CA-ID-TIMS geochronology of ash beds from the GSSP area, the base of the Capitanian Stage has been constrained at 264.28 ± 0.16Ma. Magnetostratigraphy suggests that the Illawarra Reversal is located slightly below the base of the Capitanian Stage. Strontium isotope chemostratigraphy generally shows a continuous decline in the 87Sr/86Sr ratio throughout the Capitanian in the GSSP area, but all ratios are higher than the Capitanian minimum of ~0.7068. δ13Ccarb profile shows no distinct excursion around the Wordian/Capitanian boundary interval. Detailed correlation suggests that the middle-upper part of the fusuline-based Midian Stage correlates with the Capitanian Stage.