Geologica Belgica

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Stratigraphy of an Early–Middle Miocene sequence near Antwerp in northern Belgium (southern North Sea basin)

(volume 13 (2010) — number 3)
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The lithostratigraphy and biostratigraphy of a temporary outcrop in the Antwerp area is described. The deposits can be attributed to the Kiel Sands and the Antwerpen Sands members, both belonging to the Lower and Middle Miocene Berchem Formation. Invertebrate and vertebrate macrofossils are abundantly present. The molluscan fauna compares well to former findings in the Antwerpen Sands Member. It can be concluded that the studied sequence is continuously present in the Antwerp area, and thickens in a northward direction. The study of the marine mammal fauna shows that eurhinodelphinids are the most common fossil odontocete (toothed-bearing cetaceans) in the Antwerpen Sands Member, associated here with kentriodontine, physeteroid, squalodontid, mysticete (baleen whales) and pinniped (seals) fragmentary remains. Both the molluscan fauna and the organic-walled palynomorphs indicate for the Antwerpen Sands Member deposition in a neritic, energetic environment, which shallowed upwards. The dinoflagellate cysts indicate that the Antwerpen Sands Member was deposited during late Burdigalian to Langhian times.

Antwerpen Sands, Mollusca, Odontoceti, Mysticeti, Pinnipedia, dinoflagellate cysts.

To cite this article

Stephen LOUWYE, Robert MARQUET, Mark BOSSELAERS & Olivier LAMBERT, «Stratigraphy of an Early–Middle Miocene sequence near Antwerp in northern Belgium (southern North Sea basin)», Geologica Belgica [En ligne], number 3, volume 13 (2010), 269-284 URL :

About: Stephen LOUWYE

Research Unit Palaeontology, Ghent University, Krijgslaan 281/S8, 9000 Gent, Belgium. E-mail:

About: Robert MARQUET

Palaeontology Department, Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Vautierstraat 29, 1000 Brussels. E-mail:


Lode Van Berckenlaan 90, 2600 Berchem, Belgium. E-mail:

About: Olivier LAMBERT

Département de Paléontologie, Institut royal des Sciences naturelles de Belgique, rue Vautier 29, 1000 Brussels, Belgium.  Present address: Département Histoire de la Terre, Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle, rue Buffon 8, 75005, Paris, France. E-mail: