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Approximately 200 sediment samples have been examined across a modern barrier island to establish the variations in faunal characteristics associated with a prototype of a subsurface stratigraphic trap. Diagnostic species variations and variations in gross population characteristics independent of species variations have been recognized.
Nine environmental zones on and near Horn Island, Mississippi, are easily recognizable on the basis of modern species composition. Exclusive of species composition, however, these zones are distinguishable on the basis of faunal diversity, population size, character of the fauna, and faunal dominance. These gross population characteristics can be used to identify nearshore-barrier island trends in the subsurface regardless of geologic age, species composition, or similarity to modern species.
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