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Rocky Beach, Port Macquarie, Macquarie Co., New South Wales, Australia

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 31° 26' 18'' South , 152° 55' 32'' East
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): -31.43830,152.92544
Köppen climate type:Cfa : Humid subtropical climate

The Rocky Beach Metamorphic Melange is located at Rocky Beach, Port Macquarie on the mid north coast of New South Wales, approximately 400 km north of Sydney.

The rock group forms part of the Port Macquarie block (Och et al. 2003), located in the eastern New England Fold Belt and is notable for the presence of well-exposed high-pressure metamorphic rocks and a wide variety of igneous rocks, including pillow basalts of MORB (Mid Ocean Ridge Basalt) affinity, and minor mafic and intermediate calc- alkaline intrusions, embedded in lenses of serpentinite melange. It covers an area of just under 1 hectare.

Near the north end of Rocky Beach a 'melange-in-melange' structure preserving serpentinite masses that have invaded the Watonga Formation, which has also enveloped two bodies of chlorite- actinolite schist, surrounded by highly schistose Port Macquarie Serpentinite, contain inclusions of lawsonite eclogite, omphacitite, blueschist, and tremolite marble. Although these exotic high-pressure metamorphic rocks are known from serpentinite bodies elsewhere across eastern Australia their occurrence is unique because some of these tectonic blocks, namely eclogite, contain a mineral called lawsonite, which have only been identified in 10 localities worldwide. The Rocky Beach Metamorphic Melange type area occurs at the north end of Rocky Beach. The unit comprises blocks of multiply deformed polymetamorphosed high-pressure metamorphic rocks (Och et al. 2003) of mafic igneous parentage low-grade blocks of sedimentary and basaltic rocks derived from the Watonga Formation, and a narrow slice of antigorite serpentinite, set in a multiply deformed chlorite- actinolite schist matrix.

The location is an internationally important geoheritage site.

Mineral List

12 valid minerals.

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org

Permian - Cambrian
252.17 - 541 Ma

ID: 768963
melange 75701

Age: Paleozoic (252.17 - 541 Ma)

Description: Melange of the Port Macquarie Complex; dolerite, gabbro, diorite, basalt, chert, jasper, toanlite, trondhjemite, quartz feldspar porphyry.

Comments: igneous mafic intrusive; igneous mafic volcanic; synthesis of multiple published descriptions

Lithology: Igneous mafic intrusive; igneous mafic volcanic

Reference: Raymond, O.L., Liu, S., Gallagher, R., Zhang, W., Highet, L.M. Surface Geology of Australia 1:1 million scale dataset 2012 edition. Commonwealth of Australia (Geoscience Australia). [5]

Early Permian
272.3 - 298.9 Ma

ID: 3186666
Paleozoic sedimentary rocks

Age: Cisuralian (272.3 - 298.9 Ma)

Comments: New England Fold Belt

Lithology: Limestone,mudstone,tillite,siltstone,sandstone

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

Data and map coding provided by Macrostrat.org, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

This page contains all mineral locality references listed on mindat.org. This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in mindat.org without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


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Och, D.J., Leitch, E.C., Caprarelli, G. and Watanabe, T., 2003. Blueschist and eclogite in tectonic melange, Port Macquarie, New South Wales, Australia. Mineralogical Magazine, 67:609-624.

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