Quaternary coral reef terraces from Kish and Qeshm Islands, Persian Gulf: new radiometric dating and tectonic implications
A survey of raised coral reef terraces in locations along the southern coast of Iran was carried out with the aim of assessing regional Late Quaternary tectonic uplift rates influenced by salt doming. Two islands were studied: Kish, where no previous data were available, and Qeshm, where a previous survey had already attributed the lowest step in two sequences of raised marine terraces to the Last Interglacial. Twenty-five ESR and seven Th/U ages were obtained from Kish Island. The results show that this flat, about 32 m high, gently domed island was totally submerged during the last two interglacial periods. Corals ascribed to MIS 5 and MIS 7 have been dated at the same elevations, near the present sea level, and in the uppermost, inner part of the island, giving evidence of a polycyclic origin for the island surface deposits. Following a discussion on the possible position of eustatic peaks during MIS 7, a maximal average uplift rate of 0.20±0.02 mm/yr has been deduced from the above data. Furthermore, the survey obtained some new results from Qeshm, where seven ESR ages confirmed the MIS 5 age of the lowest raised marine terrace (that also corresponds to an uplift rate of about 0.2 mm/yr), failing, however, to date older steps, due to significant coral-sample re-crystallisation. In the western part of Qeshm, five new radiocarbon ages of elevated beach material demonstrated the variability of uplift rates even along short distances around an active salt dome.
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