The general texture of sea-floor sediments along the south Texas Outer Continental Shelf was evaluated in terms of gravel, sand, silt, and clay components. The gravel component is quantitatively minor and is concentrated mainly in the southern sector; it consists, for the most part, of relict biogenic detritus dominated by molluscan shells. The sand component consists of terrigenous and biogenic detritus. Modern sand is localized along the shoreface sector, whereas palimpsest and relict sands characterize the northern and southern sectors, which are the respective locations of the ancestral Brazos-Colorado 'and Rio Grande deltas. The central sector contains an extensive modern mud blanket that appears to be migrating southward over relict deposits of the ancestral Rio Grande delta. The silt fraction is the highly dominant component of the mud blanket; silt appears to be hydraulically trapped within the shelf environment and constitutes the most abundant detrital component within the Outer Continental Shelf region. The subordinate clay component of the mud blanket is concentrated toward the shelf break and may be largely escaping into deeper water environments.
Additional Publication Details
Textural distribution of sea-floor sediments, south Texas Outer Continental Shelf