The Karoo sedimentary basins of Central and Southern Africa record a special moment in Earth’s history. The single continent (Pangea) reached its maximum extension between the Upper Paleozoic and the Lower Mesozoic (~300 to ~200 Ma), and the most important mass extinction on Earth took place wiping out 95% of species. The Main Karoo Basin in South Africa, gives the name to other sedimentary basins in Africa (Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, etc.) from the same period, because it is where the Karoo Supergroup-type area is located an it is best studied.
The beginning of sedimentation of this first sequence, in depositional order, is generally attributed to the Upper Carboniferous, about 300 Ma, continuing until the Middle Jurassic, when the Gondwana began to disintegrate, when sediment accumulation was replaced by vast igneous provinces of the Karoo .
Text by: Sheila Zunguza
Edited by: Ricardo Araújo