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Early in 1957, several widely separated oil and gas discoveries were made in the Beaverhill Lake formation in the Swan Hills area of west-central Alberta. Production in this formation comes from the Swan Hills member, a southwest-dipping sequence of clastic organic limestones forming a platform on which small reef mounds are developed. To date, all the known hydrocarbons are trapped in the small bioherms downdip from the regional pinchout edge of the member, but the pinch-out edge itself is only in the early stages of being explored for possible stratigraphic traps. The Swan Hills member contains Lingula spatulata (early Waterways) zone fossils and represents early Beaverhill Lake reefing.
At the southwest corner of the type area, the Swan Hills member occupies the entire Beaverhill Lake interval and interfingers with the basal beds of the overlying Windfall reef of Woodbend age.
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