Hayward, B.W.; Grenfell, H.R.; Sabaa, A.T.; Neil, H.L.; Buzas, M.A. 2010 Recent New Zealand deep-water benthic foraminifera : taxonomy, ecologic distribution, biogeography, and use in paleoenvironmental assessment. Lower Hutt: GNS Science. GNS Science monograph 26; New Zealand Geological Survey paleontological bulletin 77 363 p.
Abstract: The shells of foraminifera (shelled marine protozoans) are abundant in seafloor sediments of the present day and the geologic past. Compared with many other microfossil groups (e.g. pollen, spores, diatoms, dinoflagellates), they are relatively easy to extract from the sediment for study. They are also easily recovered from small chips of rock brought to the surface by the circulating mud of drilling rigs exploring for hydrocarbons. All these factors have resulted in foraminifera being the most used fossil group for determining the age and depositional environments of New Zealand’s marine Cenozoic sedimentary rocks. Most research has focused on planktic foraminifera and their value in dating outer shelf and deeper water sedimentary rocks and correlating them with overseas’ sequences. Benthic foraminifera are used in a more limited fashion for dating shallow marine rocks within New Zealand, because their distribution is more strongly influenced by environmental variables and many have more local biogeographic distributions. On the other hand, benthic foraminifera are the most useful microfossil group used for determining past marine Cenozoic environments. In an earlier study, we documented the ecologic and biogeographic distribution of shallow (50 m depth) foraminifera of the New Zealand region, that improved the reliability and precision of benthic foraminifera paleoenvironmental assessments in these deeper environments. This improved understanding is expected to also contribute to our dating capability in these environments. This study consists of 4 major section: Ecologic distribution; biogeography, frequency of occurrence and species duration; use in paleoenvironmental assessment; taxonomy and atlas. (auth/DG)