oa South African Journal of Geology - Coastal aeolianites at Black Rock, Northern Zululand

Volume 78 Number 3
  • ISSN : 1012-0750
  • E-ISSN: 1996-8590



Black Rock is situated on the Northern Zululand coastline, 20 km south of the Moambique Border. It consists of a 20 rn high headland, virtually surrounded by inter-tidal platforms.T he inter-tidal platforms are typically developed with raised rims, shallow tidal pools and concave sea-level notches profiled into the headland.A n ill-defined emergent platform exists at 4 rn above the present mean sea-level.D ensely spaced, perfectly cylindrical solution pipes, originated from a now completely eroded emergent platform, penetrate the headland downwards to sea-level,

The main rock-type constituting the headland and inter-tidal platforms is strongly cross-bedded calcareous dune-rock (aeolianite ).It consists of well-rounded quartz grains and shell fragments cemented together in a finely crystallized calcium carbonate matrix.T he overall carbonate content is of the order of 50 per cent. Sedirnentological and geomorphological similarities exist between the aeolianite of Black Rock, the Bluff Beds of Durban and other occurrences along coastal Natal and Zululand.It is suggested that the aeolianite formed during a marine regression in the past.T he dunes then became cemented by downward percolation of ground-water, containing dissolved calcium carbonate.

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