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By O.A. Jones (Eds.)

ISBN-10: 0123955289

ISBN-13: 9780123955289

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Sample text

The history of this area is broadly similar to that of the Bahama Banks. A new boring on the southern barrier reef of New Caledonia reached basement at 225 m, with three marine and two detrital or aeolian horizons in the reef limestone (Avias and Coudray, 1967); this record also indicates subsidence, with complications resulting from Pleistocene events. Fringing reefs generally lie on relatively shallow foundations close to the shore, and have a much shorter history than barriers and atolls. Such superficial recent reefs have been described from Samoa (Mayor, 1924; Cary, 1931), the New Hebrides (Baker, 1929), the Solomon Islands (Stoddart, 1969a), the Seychelles (Taylor, 1968; Lewis, 1968), and elsewhere.

In time the central land would sink beneath the level of the sea to disappear, but the coral would have completed its circular wall. —Under this view we must look at a lagoon Island as a monument raised by myriads of tiny architects, to mark the spot where a former land lies buried in the depths of the ocean (Darwin, 1933, p. 400). Darwin wrote a full account of his theory in 1835 (published 1962), first announced it in a paper on regional patterns of uplift and subsidence (1837), expanded it in his "Journal of Researches" (1839), and gave it definitive treatment in "The Structure and Distribution of Coral Reefs" (1842).

However, it is also apparent that many reefs are of such magnitude and antiquity that Pleistocene events alone cover only part of their history. It is now possible to outline a unified reef theory, based on reef studies over the last 40 years. It is interesting to note that the last major deductive treatment of reefs, in Davis's "Coral Reef Problem," appeared in the same year that the Great Barrier Reef Expedition of 1928-1929 initiated a new phase in the careful field study of living coral reefs, an approach pioneered by the Royal Society Funafuti investigations of 18961898.

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Biology and Geology of Coral Reefs. Geology 2 by O.A. Jones (Eds.)

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