Participant of COCARDE Network


University of Fribourglogo_Uni_Fribourg

The micropaleontology group of the Department of Geoscience of the University of Fribourg is involved in cold water carbonate mound research since 2005. We presently study recent and sub-recent benthic and planktonic foraminifera as bioindicators for these environments. Our goal is to find also bioindicators for analogue fossil records. Our approach are the quantitative analyses of assemblages, statistical treatment of data and comparison with geochemical proxies.



We have organized 2 workshop of the European Science Foundation (ESF) Magellan Workshop Series:


  • “Exploring Escarpment Mud Mound Systems and Mud Volcanoes with new European strategies for sustainable mid-depth coring”. Murten, 26-29 April 2007.
  • “Cold-water carbonate reservoir systems in deep environments. A pilot Industry-Academia Partnership in marine research drilling”. Fribourg, 21-25 January 2009.


Our projects related to carbonate mound research are funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF):


  • "Foraminifera as paleoenvironmental tracers": mounds in the North Atlantic. Ref. 200020-117928.
  • "The nature of the Mediterranean connections". Ref. 200021-111694.



Scanning Microscope, Phosphorus Line, X-Ray Diffractometer, Multiphase Carbon Analyser, Atom Absortions Spectrometer





Prof. Dr.
Silvia Spezzaferri
Prof. Dr.
Anneleen Foubert
Dr. David
Claudio Stalder


Related Publications

Margreth, S., Rüggeberg, A., Spezzaferri, S., (in review). Benthic foraminifera associated to Norwegian cold-water coral reefs: towards the assessment of regional bioindicators. Marine Micropaleontology.
Margreth, S., Gennari, G., Rüggeberg, A., Comas, M.C., Pinheiro, L.M., Spezzaferri, S., (in review). Development of cold-water coral ecosystems on mud volcanoes in the West Alboran Basin: paleoceanographic implications. Marine Geology.


Margreth, S., Rüggeberg, A., Spezzaferri, S., 2009. Benthic foraminifera as bioindicator for cold-water coral reeef ecosystems along the Irish margin. Deep Sea Research I, 56(12), 2216-2234.