The paleogeographic evolution of Lake Pannon within the Pannonian basin is reconstructed
with eight maps, ranging from the Middle Miocene to the Early Pliocene. The maps are
based on the distribution of selected biozones and specific fossils, and on complementary
sedimentological and seismic information. Our reconstruction shows that the history
of Lake Pannon can be divided into three distinct intervals: an initial stage with
low water level, which resulted in isolation from the sea at about 12 Ma and might
have led to temporary fragmentation of the lake; an interval of gradual transgression
lasting until ca. 9.5 Ma; and a long late interval of shrinkage and infilling of sediments
that persisted into the Early Pliocene. The deep subbasins of the lake formed during
the transgressive interval, in more basinward locations than the deep basins of the
preceding Sarmatian age. The southern shoreline, running parallel with the Sava and
Danube rivers along the northern foot of the Dinarides, changed very Little during
the Lifetime of the lake, while the northern shoreline underwent profound changes.
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