The Sierra Chacaico is a moutain ridge that comprises fossil rich deposits dating from the Lower Bajocian (Middle Jurassic). These deposits are part of the Neuquén Basin, in western-central Argentian. Especially the area South of the town of Zapala is famous for the ammonite bearing deposits.
A well-known locality is the eastern flank of the Charahuilla valley, where ammonite-rich deposits of the Lajas Formation of the Cuyo Group are exposed.
These days, it is no longer allowed to export fossils from Argentina.
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The ammonite rich outcrops can be found at the cliffs east of the small river the Arroyo Charahuilla, east of the road from Melipil to Charahuilla.
The layered deposits of the Lajas Formation are easily recognizable from the road. To reach the outcrops one has to go down from the road by foot, cross the stream and walk up the slope on the other side.
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The deposits of the Lajas Formation are exeptionally rich in ammonites. Especially the softer, marly layers are very rich. In the harder bed it is well worth to brake open the calcareous concretions.
Literature recommended by members
- Dietze et al., 2012: Ammonites and stratigraphy of a Lower Bajocian (Middle Jurassic) section in the Sierra Chacaico (Neuquén Basin, Argentina).
Zitteliana 52, 119-140
Added by FossilDude
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