A comparison of the Cretaceous (Albian) Edwards Limestone bioherms of Central Texas with the Holocene Coral Reefs of Bermuda


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January 2011


The Edwards Limestone of Central Texas is comprised of numerous rudist-dominated patch reefs that are collectively referred to as the Central Texas Reef Trend. These bioherms were protected by the Stuart City barrier reefs along the Texas Gulf Coast. The Stuart City reefs have been compared with the modern barrier reefs of Australia and Belize, but there is currently no modern analog for the Central Texas bioherms. Bermuda was chosen for a modern analog study based on the existence of a protective rim reef system, its low biodiversity, and a slower reef growth rate as compared with other modern reefs. Although the patch reefs of Bermuda were determined to be “similar” to the Central Texas Edwards Limestone bioherms in many respects, the high temperatures and unique oceanographic conditions of the Cretaceous likely means that no exact modern analog for the rudist-dominated Edwards bioherms exists.

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