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Servicio Geológico Colombiano

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 Volume 1 Chapter 3

Chapter 3

Tectonostratigraphic Terranes in Colombia: An Update

First Part: Continental Terranes

Jorge Julián RESTREPO and Jean–François TOUSSAINT

Citation is suggested as: 

Restrepo, J.J. & Toussaint, J.F. 2019. Tectonostratigraphic terranes in Colombia: An update. First part: Continental terranes. In: Gómez, J. & Mateus–Zabala, D. (editors), The Geology of Colombia, Volume 1 Proterozoic – Paleozoic. Servicio Geológico Colombiano, Publicaciones Geológicas Especiales 35, p. 45–95. Bogotá.


The quite abundant geological information that has been produced in recent years in Colombia, especially in geochronological and geological mapping, necessitates updating the mosaic of geological terranes that comprise the Colombian territory. Several modifications to these characteristics and boundaries are proposed for terranes such as Chibcha, Tahamí, and Calima. Some small terranes that have been defined recently, including Anacona, Ebéjico (Quebradagrande), and Pozo (Arquía), are placed within the context of the larger terranes. In addition, some new terranes, including Yalcón, Bocaná, Aburrá, Kogi, and Tairona, are defined and their characteristics are described. With these new geochronological data, we propose that the Cajamarca Metamorphic Complex be replaced by two new lithodemical units: the Antioquia Complex, which covers mostly rocks that formed during Permian and Triassic metamorphism, and the Coello Complex, which comprises metamorphic rocks that formed during Jurassic metamorphism. Future lines of investigation are proposed to solve remaining problems, especially the boundaries of some of the newly defined terranes.

Keywords: continental  terranes, accretions, displaced terranes, Colombia, Andes.