It marks the end of the Proterozoic Eon, and the beginning of the Phanerozoic Eon. The Ediacaran Period overlaps, but is shorter than the Vendian Period, a name that was earlier, in 1952, proposed by Russian geologist and paleontologist Boris Sokolov. The Vendian concept was formed stratigraphically top-down, and the lower boundary of the Cambrian became the upper what does radiometric dating mean of the Vendian. The Vendian in its type area consists of large subdivisions such as Laplandian, Redkino, Kotlin and Rovno Regional stages with the globally traceable subdivisions and their boundaries, including its lower one.
The Redkino, Kotlin and Rovno regional stages have been substantiated in the type area of the Vendian on the basis of the abundant organic-walled microfossils, megascopic algae, metazoan body fossils and ichnofossils. The lower boundary of the Vendian could have a biostratigraphic substantiation as well taking into consideration the worldwide occurrence of the Pertatataka assemblage of giant acanthomorph acritarchs. Although the Ediacaran Period does contain soft-bodied fossils, it is unusual in comparison to later periods because its beginning is not defined by a change in the fossil record. Rather, the beginning is defined at the base of a chemically distinctive carbonate layer that is referred to as a “cap carbonate,” because it caps glacial deposits. This bed is characterized by an unusual depletion of 13C that indicates a sudden climatic change at the end of the Marinoan ice age. Nevertheless, the definitions of the lower and upper boundaries of the Ediacaran on the basis of chemostratigraphy and ichnofossils are disputable.
The C-isotope chemostratigraphic characteristics obtained for contemporaneous cap carbonates in different parts of the world may be variable in a wide range owing to different degrees of secondary alteration of carbonates, dissimilar criteria used for selection of the least altered samples, and, as far as the C-isotope data are concerned, due to primary lateral variations of δ l3Ccarb in the upper layer of the ocean. As to the Treptichnus pedum, a reference ichnofossil for the lower boundary of the Cambrian, its usage for the stratigraphic detection of this boundary is always risky, because of the occurrence of very similar trace fossils belonging to the Treptichnids group well below the level of T. Gaskiers, or whether the two events are correlated. The dating of the rock type section of the Ediacaran Period in South Australia has proven uncertain. Therefore, the age range of 635 to 542 million years is based on correlations to other countries where dating has been possible. Applying this age to the base of the Ediacaran assumes that cap carbonates are laid down synchronously around the world and that the correct cap carbonate layers have been selected in such diverse locales as Australian and Namibia.
This is controversial because an age of about 580 million years has been obtained for glacial rocks in Tasmania which some scientists tentatively assign to those just beneath the Ediacaran rocks of the Flinders Ranges. The fossil record from the Ediacaran Period is sparse, as more easily fossilized hard-shelled animals had yet to evolve. Ediacara biota bear little resemblance to modern lifeforms, and their relationship even with the immediately following lifeforms of the Cambrian explosion is rather difficult to interpret. There is evidence that Earth’s first mass extinction happened during this period when early animals changed the environment. The relative proximity of the Moon at this time meant that tides were stronger and more rapid than they are now. 4 hours, and there were 13. The first episode of a BBC documentary titled Life on Earth, with David Attenborough as narrator.
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On the age of the old sedimentary cover of the Russian Platform”. Izvestiya Akademii Nauk SSSR, Seriya Eologicheskaya. Essays on the Advent of the Vendian System. Abstracts of All-Union Symposium on Paleontology of the Precambrian and Early Cambrian.
The Tommotian Stage and the problem of the lower boundary of the Cambrian”. Vendian versus Ediacaran: priorities, contents, prospectives”. Archived from the original on October 4, 2011. Transactions of the International Conference on the IGCP Project 493n Moscow: GEOS. The Yudomian of Siberia, Vendian and Ediacaran systems of the International stratigraphic scale”. Appendix 2 in: “The Ediacaran Period: A New Addition to the Geologic Time Scale.
50 Myr recovery from the largest negative δ13C excursion in the Ediacaran ocean”. Rock magnetic cyclostratigraphy of the Doushantuo Formation, South China and its implications for the duration of the Shuram carbon isotope excursion”. Treptichnus pedum and the Vendian-Cambrian boundary”. U-Pb zircon date from the Neoproterozoic Ghaub Formation, Namibia: Constraints on Marinoan glaciation”. U-Pb Ages from the Neoproterozoic Doushantuo Formation, China”. U-Pb zircon age constraints on late Neoproterozoic glaciation in Tasmania”.
Extinction of Cloudina and Namacalathus at the Precambrian-Cambrian boundary in Oman”. Geological constraints on the Precambrian history of Earth’s rotation and the Moon’s orbit”. Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ediacaran. Earth’s oldest animal ecosystem held in fossils at Nilpena Station in SA outback ABC News, 5 August 2013. If close-ups are your thing and you use a Sony Mirrorless camera, the Tokina FiRIN 100mm F2.