GEOLOGICA CARPATHICA, 49, 5, BRATISLAVA, OCTOBER 1998
NORTH DINARIDIC LATE CRETACEOUSPALEOGENE
SUBDUCTION-RELATED TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNITS
OF SOUTHERN TISIA, CROATIA
Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Ante Kovaèiæa 5, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
(Manuscript received February 23, 1998; accepted in revised form September 1, 1998)
Abstract: In order to evaluate the structural position of Mesozoic formations underlying the Neogene South Pannonian
Basin, a tentative correlation is proposed between (1) the Late CretaceousPaleogene subduction-related magmatic,
sedimentary and metamorphic units of the North Dinarides and (2) the apparently exotic blocks of the same units
found in the subsurface and at the surface within the Pannonian Basin. The formations are as follows: aSedimen-
tary Late Cretaceous to Paleogene flysch sequences, at their base interlayered with basalt, alkali-feldspar rhyolite and
pyroclastics and intruded by penecontemporaneous A-type granites; bVery low-, low- and medium-grade region-
ally metamorphosed sequences which originated from the surrounding Late CretaceousPaleogene rocks; c
Synkinematic Eocene A-type and S-type granitoids, and dUnderlying tectonized ophiolite mélange. Concordant
radiometric (71 to 48 Ma) and geological ages were obtained on the rocks of the first three units from both areas. This
paper presents diagrams which schematically illustrate and summarize the Late Cretaceous to Miocene evolution of
the area adjoining the North Dinarides and South Pannonian Basin. Geological profiles, based on seismic data, are
presented. The occurrence of North Dinaridic Late CretaceousPaleogene subduction-related exotic fragments found
in the South Pannonian Basin can be explained: 1by Oligocene uplift of detached fragments of the underthrust
North Dinarides in the nascent Drava and Sava depressions, and 2by Pliocene strike-slip faulting.
Key words: North Dinarides, South Pannonian Basin, flysch sequences, Alpine metamorphic sequences, synkinematic
granitoids, ophiolite mélange, correlation.
According to the earliest plate tectonic interpretations, the
Pannonian Basin (PB) was regarded as a back-arc basin
relative to the Carpathians (Stegena et al. 1975 and others).
Later Royden et al. (1983) suggested that the evolution of
the PB was controlled by extension, coeval with
compression in the Carpathians, extension being induced by
subduction of the Eurasian plate and roll-back of the
subducted slab. Recent geodynamic interpretations of the
PB, considering the mosaic-like pattern of the Mesozoic-
Paleogene units occurring in its northwestern parts (the
Pelso Megaunit), proposed that its =development was gov-
erned by Late Oligocene/Early Miocene escape tectonics
from the Eastern Alps (Kázmér & Kovács 1985; Ratschbach-
er et al. 1991; Csontos et al. 1992 and others).
However, these geodynamic models did not take into con-
sideration that to the south the PB is bounded by another ma-
jor mountain system, namely the Dinarides. Geometrically,
the marginal parts of the South PB are strongly controlled by
the tectonic contact between the Dinaride Ophiolite Zone
and the overlying Late CretaceousPaleogene metamorphic-
magmatic-sedimentary units (Fig. 1). These are genetically
related to the ancient north-dipping subduction zone of the
Dinaridic-Hellenidic Tethys that was first activated during
the Late Jurassic/Early Cretaceous and remained active until
the Late Eocene. The different Mesozoic-Paleogene units,
which are widespread in the North Dinarides, can be correlat-
ed with equivalent rock units outcropping and occurring in
the subsurface of the South PB.
This paper focuses on Late CretaceousPaleogene sedi-
mentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks occurring in the
South PB and their correlation with tectonostratigraphic
units of the North Dinarides. This correlation and available
field and geophysical data suggest that the Late Cretaceous
Paleogene blocks of the South PB were emplaced due to ex-
humation of underthrust North Dinaridic units during the
Oligocene early phases of development of the Sava and Dra-
va depressions and due to Pliocene strike-slip faulting locally
giving rise to transpressive thrusting. This transpressive de-
formation occurred in post-Pannonian time when the north-
ernmost Dinarides were thrust over the southern parts of the
Multiple opinions have been proposed regarding the geo-
tectonic setting of the border area between the North Dinar-
ides and Tisia. These have been summarized and their inher-
ent problems discussed by Pamiæ (1987). Based on field
data, analyses of cores from deep wells and seismic data, the
surface boundary between the North Dinarides and the Tisia
block runs approximately south of the Mts. Moslovaèka
Gora, Psunj, Poeka Gora, Dilj and Fruka Gora, and thus
generally coincides with the northern marginal fault of the
Sava Depression (Fig. 1). As such it relates closely to the
boundary proposed by Herak et al. (1990).
DINARIDIC LATE CRETACEOUSPALEOGENE TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNITS 343
I. Late CretaceousPaleogene units
of the North Dinarides
These units belong to the Posavina terrane which includes
the Mts. ProsaraMotajicaCerBukulja zone of the north-
ernmost Dinarides that continues southeastward into the Var-
dar Zone sensu lato (Pamiæ 1993; Pamiæ et al. 1998). The
Posavina terrane originated along the active northernmost
margin of Apulia consisting of a trench-like basin and a pre-
sumed magmatic arc. After Mesozoic ophiolites of the Di-
naridic Tethys had been obducted onto the Apulian passive
continental margin during the Late Jurassic/Early Creta-
ceous, subduction-related sedimentary, igneous and meta-
morphic processes continued along this feature during Late
Cretaceous and Paleogene times.
Late CretaceousPaleogene unmetamorphic sedimen-
tary sequences consist in their lower parts of Turonian (?)
and Lower Senonian shale, marly shale, siltstone and lime-
stone, interlayered with upper mantle derived basalt, and
crustal alkali-feldspar rhyolite and pyroclastic rocks (the bi-
modal basalt-rhyolite formation). This volcanic-sedimentary
formation contains rare pre-Upper Cretaceous blueschist
olistoliths and blocks (Majer & Lugoviæ 1992; Pamiæ 1993).
This unit is conformably overlain by flysh composed mainly
of sandstone and shale in its lower parts (Maastrichtian and
Paleocene). Calcareous shales, sandstones, sandy limestones
and limestones predominate in its upper, Early to Middle
Eocene parts (Jelaska 1978). These rocks are widespread in
the Mts. Motajica, Vuèjak, Trebovac and Majevica (Fig. 1)
where they are unconformably overlain by the Tertiary fill of
the South PB.
Regionally metamorphosed sequences laterally grade
into unmetamorphosed Upper CretaceousPaleogene rocks.
Complete sequences showing progressive zonation from un-
metamorphosed Upper Cretaceous sedimentary and igne-
ous rocks to very low-, low- and medium-grade metamorphic
rocks are best preserved in Mt. Motajica. The following were
recognized here: (1) progressive textural changes, (2) miner-
al zonation of chlorite to biotite to garnet to staurolite and (3)
changes in the oxygen isotopic composition and geobaromet-
ric data (Pamiæ et al. 1992). In a first phase, a regional syn-
tectonic medium-pressure and low-temperature metamor-
phism took place which affected an up to 34 km wide zone.
This metamorphism was related to a Late Eocene/Oligocene
deformational event (about 4540 Ma). This phase was over-
printed by contact metamorphism under increasing tempera-
Fig. 2. a) Geological map of Mt. Motajica modified from Variæak (1965): b) Colum-
nar section showing progresive zonality from unmetamorphosed Upper Cretaceous
flysch sediments to very low-, low- and medium-grade metamorphic rocks.
1 Neogene and Quaternary sedimentary rocks of the Pannonian Basin. 2 Late
Cretaceous flysch sequence. 3 Paleogene very low- and low-grade metamorphic
sequence. 4 Paleogene medium-grade metamorphic sequence. 5 S-type granite. 6
Dip of schistosity.
1 shale; 2 sandstone; 3 limestone; 4 slate; 5 metasandstone; 6
phyllite; 7 schistose metasandstone and quartz-muscovite schist; 8 recrystallized
limestone; 9 marble; 10 augen-phyllite; 11 biotite-phyllite; 12 chloritoid
phyllite; 13 mica schist; 14 amphibolite; 15 gneiss; 16 migmatite; 17
And andalusite; Bi biotite; Ch chlorite; Chtd chloritoid; Gr garnet; St
staurolite; Tu tourmaline.
tures and decreasing pressures during the final diapiric as-
cent of granite intrusions. In the country rocks, this ascent
gave rise to the development of a narrow andalusite zone, in-
cluding local partial melting and the formation of migma-
tites. On the other hand, at the margin of the granite, uneven
greisenization of granites took place as evident by numerous
occurrences of tourmaline (Fig. 2ab). In the Mt. Motajica
area, fold and thrust structures are north vergent in contrast
to the common SW vergence in the Dinarides. Similar struc-
tural deflections are also recognized in the surrounding Mt.
Prosara and on the northern slopes of Mt. Majevica (Fig. 1).
In the area of Mt. Prosara and in some oil-wells only low-
and very low-grade metasediments with poor remains of the
Late Cretaceous protolith are preserved, whereas in the
western parts of the zone only Alpine metamorphic rocks
crop out, without any remainders of Upper Cretaceous
From the slates and phyllites of the Mts. Motajica and Pro-
sara metamorphic sequences a Late CretaceousPaleogene
microflora was obtained (Pantiæ & Jovanoviæ 1979). Radio-
metric determination, carried out on monomineralic concen-
trates from medium-grade rocks from a well core yielded K-
Ar ages of 48 (on hornblende) and 38 (on biotite) Ma
(Lanphere & Pamiæ 1992).
Synkinematic granitoids occur in Alpine progressively
metamorphosed sequences as veins and small- to medium-
sized plutons, which, as indicated by geophysical data, are
more common in the subsurface than on the surface. The
Alpine granitoids belong to the A-type (Mt. Prosara) and S-
type (Mt. Motajica) family as indicated by geochemical
data (Pamiæ & Lanphere 1991). Rb-Sr measurements carried
out on the Mts. Motajica and Prosara granites yielded a Sr-
isochrone age of 48 Ma. However, two granite samples ob-
tained from oil-wells drilled in the western part of the zone
yielded a Rb-Sr reference age of 56 Ma. Generally, these
ages fit with the K-Ar ages obtained from penecontempora-
neous medium-grade metamorphic rocks (Lanphere & Pamiæ
The tectonized ophiolite mélange is in some places un-
conformably overlain by Late CretaceousPaleogene se-
quences. This mélange is strongly and pervasively sheared
and includes almost the same fragments as the olistostrome
mélange of the Dinaride Ophiolite Zone (Dimitrijeviæ &
Dimitrijeviæ 1973). However, the tectonized mélange which
does not include larger peridotite and gabbro bodies, also
contains exotic blocks of Upper Cretaceous limestones
which to date have not been found in the olistostrome mé-
lange of the Dinaride Ophiolite Zone (Pamiæ 1993). This
suggests that generation of ophiolites and mélange must have
also taken place during the Late Cretaceous as indicated by
K-Ar ages of 110 to 66 Ma obtained on diabase and gabbro
fragments (Pamiæ 1997).
II. Late CretaceousPaleogene units of South Tisia
In this paper the term Tisia Megaunit is used in the same
way as it is used in recent papers published by Hungarian ge-
ologists (Fülöp et al. 1987; Csontos et al. 1992 and
others). Within the southern part of Tisia outcropping in
Croatia, Late CretaceousPaleogene rocks are developed in
almost the same facies as in the North Dinarides. They occur
as allochthonous masses, both on the surface and in the sub-
surface, as evidenced by numerous deep wells.
II a) Surface occurrences
Late CretaceousPaleogene rocks are found at the Mts.
Poeka Gora and Papuk in Slavonija.
Mt. Poeka Gora (Fig. 1) is composed mainly of Neogene
sedimentary rocks associated with Late Cretaceous igneous
and sedimentary rocks. Predominant volcanic rocks, represent-
ed by about equal proportions of basalt and alkali-feldspar rhy-
olite lavas with some tuffs, cover a surface area of about 30
. Along the southeastern margin of the mountain, the vol-
canic rocks interfinger and alternate with fossiliferous Senon-
ian, mainly Maastrichtian shales, limestones and sandstones.
These rocks are cut by diabase dykes and larger A-type granite
bodies (Fig. 3A). The entire magmatic-sedimentary complex
of Mt. Poeka Gora is allochthonous and subhorizontally
overlies the Neogene sediments of the PB, including clastics
of Pannonian age (parica & Pamiæ 1986).
In the southwestern parts of Mt. Poeka Gora and at the
base of the allochthonous thrust sheet, Late Cretaceous low-
grade metamorphic rocks crop out. These are muscovite-
quartzite schists originating from primary cherts, and some
phyllites, quartz-muscovite schists, greenschists, metatuffs
and marbles. These rocks can be correlated with low-grade
parts of Paleogene metamorphic sequences of the Mts.
Motajica and Prosara of the North Dinarides (parica &
Pamiæ 1986). K-Ar measurement carried out on a whole-rock
phyllite from Mt. Poeka Gora yielded an age of 44 Ma
(Lanphere & Pamiæ 1992).
The area of Mt. Papuk, near Voæin. Here, a Late Creta-
ceous volcanic flow is composed of about equal proportions
of basalts, alkali-feldspar rhyolites and volcanic breccias and
agglomerates with tuffs (Fig. 3B). The Voæin volcanic body
is in tectonic contact with Hercynian migmatites, S-type
granites and Miocene sedimentary rocks. The Hercynian
country rocks are intruded by diabase and A-type granitepor-
phyry veins and are included as xenoliths in Upper Creta-
ceous rhyolites. Only in a few places are volcanic rocks in-
terlayered with platy mudstones and Senonian fossiliferous
marly shales (Pamiæ 1997).
In Mt. Fruka Gora, Upper Cretaceous clastic rocks, con-
taining re-deposited blueschist pebbles, occur, together with
tectonized ophiolite mélange (Majer & Lugoviæ 1992). Unfor-
tunatelly, there are no radiometric ages for those blueschists,
which are probably pre-Upper Cretaceous in age.
A concordant isotopic age of 71.5 Ma has been determined
by a five point Rb/Sr isochron based on 2 rhyolites and 3
cogenetic A-type granites from Mt. Poeka Gora (Pamiæ et
al. 1988). K-Ar measurements on diabases gave a crystalli-
zation age of 66.0 Ma and decreased ages of 54.5 and 48.7
Ma. From the Voæin area, five whole-rock basalt samples
yielded concordant K-Ar ages of 72.862.1 Ma (Pamiæ
DINARIDIC LATE CRETACEOUSPALEOGENE TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNITS 345
II b) Subsurface data
Fourteen oil-wells drilled in the Drava Depression (Fig.
1), penetrated at depths of up to 3686 m, into Upper Creta-
ceous-(?)Paleogene basalts, metabasalts, alkali-feldspar rhy-
olites and granite porphyries with subordinate alkali-feldspar
syenite porphyries, some of them cataclasized and schis-
tosed. Some of these volcanic bodies may attain thicknesses
of up to 1000 m. In some of the deep wells the oldest sedi-
ments underlying these igneous rocks are Albian and Barre-
mian-Aptian limestones and limestone breccias, indicating a
Late Cretaceous geological age of the magmatic activity. K-
Ar measurements carried out on 13 whole-rock samples of
basalt and alkali-feldspar rhyolite gave 3 groups of radiomet-
ric ages: 1) crystallization ages ranging between 75.5 and
62.4 Ma; 2) cooling ages spanned between 59.3 and 51 Ma
and 3) strongly decreased ages spanned between 38.7 and
36.3 Ma (Pamiæ 1997).
In the Sava Depression, where fewer wells were drilled than
in the Drava Depression, Upper Cretaceous basalts and metaba-
salts were encountered only in a few deep wells (Fig. 1). K-Ar
measurements on two whole-rock basalt samples gave crystalli-
zation ages of 83.4 and 68.7 Ma and a metabasalt sample gave a
cooling(?) age of 48.9 Ma (Pamiæ 1997).
In 3 oil-wells from the Slavonija-Srijem Depression, the
oldest sedimentary rocks overlying basalts and alkali-feldspar
rhyolites are of a Late Cretaceous age. However, K-Ar
measurements, carried out on whole-rock metabasalts,
yielded a decreased age interval ranging between 61.1 and
44.1 Ma (Pamiæ 1997). In a few oil-wells, gabbro and diabase
fragments from ophiolite mélange were also penetrated. K-Ar
measurements on these rocks gave two groups of ages, namely
11080 Ma and 6759 Ma.
The Late CretaceousPaleogene tectonostratigraphic units
of the Posavina terrane represent the main and the most char-
acteristic members of the North Dinarides. Initial Late Juras-
sic/Early Cretaceous subduction processes, which took place
along the northern Tethyan margin, were accompanied by
penecontemporaneous obduction of ophiolites over the
Apulian passive continental margin, thus documenting sig-
nificant shortening of the Dinaridic-Hellenidic Tethys.
The average width of the Dinaride Ophiolite Zone is about
7080 km but its thickness cannot be calculated due to the
chaotic character of the ophiolite mélange. However, the mé-
lange also includes large bodies of peridotite thrust sheets,
some of them 10002000 m thick and smaller bodies of gab-
bros, diabase and basalts. The best preserved complete frag-
ments of oceanic crust are more than 2000 m thick excluding
the underlying tectonic peridotites and the overlying volca-
nic sedimentary formations (Pamiæ & Desmons 1989).
The obducted ophiolitic complex partly emerged, underwent
weathering (including lateritization) and erosion. The erosion
products were re-deposited during the Late Jurassic/Early Cre-
taceous in shoals and depressions located between the emerg-
ing ridges (Fig. 4A). The occurrence of blueschist olistoliths
and pebbles at the base of the Late Cretaceous flysch sequence
suggests that exhumation must have taken place during this
first post-emplacement period (e.g. Ernst 1971; Michard et al.
1994 and others).
These basins, which unconformably overlay the emplaced
ophiolites, can be traced along strike for 1020 km and their
sedimentary fill is up 1000 m thick. The basins display varia-
tions in lithostratigraphy (Pamiæ 1964) that may be important
in paleogeographical and even palinspastic considerations.
In the southern part of the Ophiolite Zone, these basins
contain at their base clastic sediments which contain frag-
ments of ophiolites and related sedimentary rocks, including
re-deposited ophiolite weathering crusts represented by nick-
eliferrous iron-poor ores and bauxites. This lower part of the
sequence which is Tithonian-Valanginian in age, is conform-
ably (?) overlain by fossiliferous Upper Cretaceous marly
shales and bedded Upper Cretaceous limestones.
In the northern part of the Ophiolite Zone, close to the
Tethyan active continental margin, the Maglaj Basin uncon-
formably overlies the Dinaridic ophiolites. It contains mainly
breccia-conglomerates and coarse-grained lithic sandstones
(Fig. 6). The detrital component of these rocks consists of
ophiolites and genetically related sediments but also of abun-
dant coarse-grained and reddish granitoids of presumed
Variscan age (Variæak 1965). The granites might come from
Tisia which was broken off from the southern margin of Her-
cynian Europe during the Bathonian (Vörös 1993; Szedeké-
Fig. 3. Partial geological columns for the Late Cretaceous volcanic
masses: A Mt. Poeka gora; B The Vocin area. 1 basalt; 2
rhyolite; 3 tuff; 4 volcanic breccia; 5 small intrusive
bodies: a) A-type granite and b) diabase; 6 Hercynian migmatite;
7 Upper Cretaceous bedded shale, limestone and sandstone.
nyi 1996) or Tertiary (Csontos et al. 1992). The granites oc-
cur as pebbles and exotic blocks, 12 m in diametre, in brec-
cia-conglomerates and as the most common components of
the lithic sandstones. In some areas these conglomerates in-
terfinger with Tithonian-Valanginian reefal limestones
whereas the uppermost parts of the clastic sequence are in
some areas unconformably(?) covered by bedded Upper Cre-
These data indicate that the Maglaj Basin, which oversteps
the northern marginal parts of the Dinaride Ophiolite Zone,
was not charged by only detritus from adjacent southerly lo-
cated ophiolite terranes, but also from a northerly located Eu-
ropean continental margin terrane.
Late Jurassic/Early Cretaceous subduction initiated the
gradual closure and finally a strong shortening of the Dinar-
idic Tethys and the development of a magmatic arc. The arc
was located north of the obducted ophiolites along the north-
ern Tethyan margin. In the trench associated with this mag-
matic arc Late CretaceousPaleogene flysch sequences accu-
mulated. Persisting subduction processes along this arc-
trench system were the driving mechanism for continued
magmatic activity during the Late Cretaceous and Paleogene.
Sr isotope data suggest a twofold magma generation activity:
1) basalts and diabases derived from an upper mantle source
and 2) A-type granites with cogenetic alkali-feldspar rhyo-
lites derived from a continental crustal source (Pamiæ et al.
1988). This indicates that continental crustal rocks were also
subducted, metasomatically reactivated and thus took part in
Consequently, in the area of this magmatic arc, granite
plutonism and bimodal basalt-rhyolite volcanism were ac-
tive. It is quite concievable that this magmatic arc may
represent the westernmost part of the north Tethyan sub-
duction zone which extends southeastward to Greece (the
Vardar Zone), the Zagros and Afghanistan (Camoin et al.
Fig. 4. Schematical diagrams illustrating and summarizing the evolution of the north Dinarides and south Pannonian Basin: A during the
Late Cretaceous; B during the Late Eocene/Oligocene; C during the Early Miocene extension. a rifting related volcanics interlayered
in Early Miocene sediments; ADCP Adriatic-Dinaridic carbonate platform; DD nascent Drava Depression; FB Apulian passive
continental margin (flysch bosniaque); MA magmatic arc (Eurasian active continental margin); OM ophiolite mélange obducted in Late
Jurassic/Early Cretaceous; OM
ophliolite mélange obducted in Late Eocene/Oligocene; OS Late Jurassic/Cretaceous marine overstep
sequences; P Posavina terrane; Pm Alpine metamorphic sequence originating from Late Cretaceous/Paleogene protolith; PG Mt.
Poeka Gora; R Radiolarite formation; SD nascent Sava Depression; T trench in front of the magmatic arc.
DINARIDIC LATE CRETACEOUSPALEOGENE TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNITS 347
Strong compressional movements, which took place by the
end of the Eocene (4540 Ma) were accompanied by the up-
lift of the Dinarides. This phase was characterized by: 1) tec-
tonization of the pristine Jurassic olistostrome mélange and
its emplacement on top of the main mass of the Dinaridic
ophiolites that were obducted during the Late Jurassic/Early
Cretaceous; 2) medium-grade metamorphism of the Upper
CretaceousPaleogene trench-sediments, and 3) synkinemat-
ic granite plutonism. With this Eocene final orogenic phase,
structuration of the Dinarides was completed (Fig. 4B).
However, within the emerging parts of the Dinarides, nu-
merous smaller and larger Oligocene and Neogene intramon-
tane basins developed. In the area north of the Dinarides, a
system of larger shallow- to deep-water transtensional de-
pressions came into evidence during the Oligocene, in which
marine, brackish and fresh-water sediments accumulated (the
South Paratethys). In the area of the present South PB, in-
cluding the nascent Sava and Drava depressions intensive
Oligocene andesite volcanic activity took place during this
transpression phase (Laubscher 1983). This magmatic activi-
ty, which was penecontemporaneous with magmatic activity
along the Periadriatic Line, might have derived from partial
melting of retarding blocks remained after the Eocene final
Due to the N-dipping subduction of Apulia (see right side
of Fig. 4B) it is likely that the Posavina terrane was over-
thrust at a low angle by the South Tisia terrane and was ex-
humed during transtensional development of the Sava and
Drava depressions. This hypothesis is supported by the re-
sults of numerous oil-wells.
Consequently, the fragments of the previously subducted
Posavina terrane occurring at present in the subsurface of the
South PB could be best explained as exhumed blocks of the
underlying northernmost Dinarides that were uplifted proba-
bly along (sub)vertical faults.
The final Eocene deformation of the Dinarides resulting
from underplating of Apulia beneath the Tisia (the present
Pannonian terranes) was followed by termination of
subduction processes. After the Oligocene transpressional
deformation of the area northeast of the uplifted Dinarides,
geodynamic processes controlling the evolution of the PB
changed fundamentally. Diapirism of the upper mantle and
Fig. 5. Geological profiles based on seismical data (Tari-Kovaèiæ & Pamiæ 1997); profile positions are presented on the geological map
Fig. 1. 1 Tertiary fill of the Pannonian Basin; 2 Late CretaceousPaleogene sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks of Posavina
terrane; 3 tectonized ophiolite mélange; 4 Hercynian crystalline rocks of the Tisia Megaunit; 5 fault.
resulting attenuation of the lower continental crust gave rise
to extensional processes, i.e., the evolution of the PB (Roy-
den et al. 1983 and others). Details on the evolution of the
southwestern and southern parts of the PB are presented else-
where (Tari-Kovaèiæ & Pamiæ 1997).
The Neogene evolution of the South PB, which was pene-
contemporaneous with the Neogene evolution of intramon-
tane basins within the uplifted Dinarides, can be divided in
two main phases. After the preceding Oligocene magmatic
activity, synsedimentary Early-Middle Miocene volcanic ac-
tivity was genetically related to rifting processes. This volca-
nism produced (1) trachyandesites of upper mantle origin
during the Karpatian, (2) basalts and andesites with subordi-
nate dacites and rhyolites of a continental crustal origin dur-
ing the Badenian, and (3) basalts and alkali-basalts of upper
mantle origin during the SarmatianPannonian (Pamiæ et al.
1995). Following the late Sarmatian sea level low stand, sed-
imentation in the evolving PB was dominated by Late Mi-
ocene and Pliocene lacustrine fresh-water deposits (Horváth
et al. 1996).
However, strong contractional tectonic activity occurred at
the beginning of the Pliocene (about 5 Ma). Reflection seis-
mic data indicate that in the South PB, units of the northern-
most Dinarides are thrust over the Tisia Megaunit (Tari-
Kovaèiæ & Pamiæ 1997) see Figs. 5AB. This change of
the lithosphere structure in the area adjoining the South PB
and the North Dinarides must have taken place in post-Pan-
nonian times. This is evidenced by the fact that the Late Cre-
taceous magmatic-metamorphic-sedimentary complex of the
North Dinarides was thrust in Mt. Poeka Gora over Neo-
gene sedimentary sequences as young as Pannonian in age.
Moreover, fold and thrust structures within the Late Creta-
ceousPaleogene complex of the North Dinarides display an
obvious north vergence (Fig. 2a). The post-Pannonian move-
ments fit with the idea presented by Horváth et al. (1996)
that strong tectonic movements must have taken place by the
beginning of the Pliocene (45 Ma) in the whole PB. This
new tectonic regime reflects an increase in intraplate com-
pressional stress producing localized deformations and broad
buckling and uplift of the PB. This deformation phase is
Fig. 6. Geological map of the epèe-Zavidoviæi-Maglaj area, the northern part of the central Dinarides (Sunariæ-Pamiæ et al. 1973): l Post-
orogenic Tertiary intramontane basins; 2 Tertiary andesites and dacites; 3 Upper Cretaceous limestones and limestone conglomerates;
4 Berriasian: a) breccia-conglomerates and sandstones and b) massive limestones; 5 ophiolite mélange, mainly shales and graywackes;
6 dismembered ophiolites, mainly ultramafics; 7 Lower Jurassic marly shales, limestones and cherts. Index-map: 1 external Dinarides;
2 internal Dinarides; 3 Vardar Zone s.l.; 4 Serbo-Mazedonian Massif; 5 Carpathians; 6 Pannonian Basin; 7 Eastern Alps.
DINARIDIC LATE CRETACEOUSPALEOGENE TECTONOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNITS 349
probably the expression of continued convergence of Africa-
Arabia with Europe.
It is likely that during this Pliocene phase of tectonic activ-
ity, wrench faulting played an important role. Thus, it is con-
ceivable that, for example, along the Banja LukaNaice
NNE-SSW trending strike-slip fault (BNF in Fig. 1), the
Late CretaceousPaleogene complex of the Dinarides was
transported northward by about 30 km from its root in the
North Dinarides and was thrust onto the Neogene sequences
of Mt. Poeka Gora, presumably at a restraining bend of the
Banja Luka-Naice fault.
Consequently, the occurrence of the Dinaridic Late Creta-
ceousPaleogene tectonostratigraphic units in the South PB
can be explained by twofold mechanisms of tectonic trans-
port. 1) Those located at depths of 30004000 m at the base
of the Neogene fill of the South PB were uplifted during the
Oligocene phase of wrench faulting controlling the initial de-
velopment of the Drava and Sava depressions. 2) The
North Dinaridic Late CretaceousPaleogene complexes
found at the surface were emplaced during the Pliocene
phase of strike-slip faulting.
Horváth (1993) emphasized the opinion that the evolution
of the PB was controlled by continued orogenic activity in
the Carpathian arc, involving northeastward and eastward
transport of the Pannonian, Tisian and Dacides blocks. Data
presented in this paper expand his idea and show that the
evolution of the South PB within the Tisia Megaunit was
controlled by contemporaneous but post-orogenic activity re-
lated to the North Dinarides, as shown by the northward
transport of the Dinaridic lithologies and their incorporation
into the South PB.
Data presented in this paper also pose the problem of the
boundary between the Tisia and the North Dinarides. This
boundary has been commonly identified with the southern
margin of the PB stretching south of the Sava River.
However, the southern margin of the Tisia is underthrust be-
low the North Dinarides and thus incorporated in their deep
structure. On the other hand, allochthonous masses of the
Late CretaceousPaleogene subduction-related complexes of
the North Dinarides are incorporated in the structure of the
South PB due to Pliocene strike-slip faulting.
Acknowledgments: This paper was financially supported by
the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Republic of
Croatia, Grant 195004. The author is indebted to Profs. P.
Ziegler and S. Schmid of Basel University for critical read-
ing of the draft of the manuscript, numerous and useful sug-
gestions which significantly improved the quality of the pa-
per. Thanks also to P. Árkai, L. Csontos and D. Plaienka for
their support during the editing procedure.
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