Age and Paleogeographical Origin of Dominican Amber

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Science  27 Sep 1996:
Vol. 273, Issue 5283, pp. 1850-1852
DOI: 10.1126/science.273.5283.1850


The age and depositional history of Dominican amber-bearing deposits have not been well constrained. Resinites of different ages exist in Hispaniola, but all of the main amberiferous deposits in the Dominican Republic (including those famous for yielding biological inclusions) were formed in a single sedimentary basin during the late Early Miocene through early Middle Miocene (15 to 20 million years ago), according to available biostratigraphic and paleogeographic data. There is little evidence for extensive reworking or redeposition, in either time or space. The brevity of the depositional interval (less than 5 million years) provides a temporal benchmark that can be used to calibrate rates of molecular evolution in amber taxa.