Ponta da Abelheira Geology
by Nuno Correia, Porto, Portugal
From the beach of Abano and over about 1 km to the north, there is a succession of limestones and marls aged between 160 and 145 million years old (Upper Jurassic). These sedimentary rocks reveal geologic structures resulting from the evolution of the region during a period when the North Atlantic Ocean was beginning to expand. In addition to faults and submarine landslide structures associated with this tectonic activity, it is also possible to see the effects of the intrusion of magmatic rocks (Igneous Complex of Sintra) in these layers, which occurred about 80 million years ago, namely a network of veins with diverse geometries, as well as the effects of heat and fluids that gave rise to metamorphism phenomena.
All this unit is of great importance for the fauna, because while the coastal range, due to the weak human presence, allows the animal species to fixed there, the terrestrial belt provides important feeding habitats. This area includes species such as the Bufo-real (Bubo bubo), the Lataste's Viper (Vipera latastei) and some species of bats, such as the Greater Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum), the Lesser Horseshoe Bat (R. hipposideros) and the Greater Mouse-eared Bat (Myotis myotis).
Nuno Correia (distributed via imaggeo.egu.eu)