The Lichi Melange


The Lichi Melange is widely distributed in the southern part of the Coastal Range. It also extends northward along the western margin of the Coastal Range to Lehe, forming a narrow band of 1-3 km wide and 70 km long. The type locality crops out at Lichi Village near Taitung. The mlange is composed of thick mudstone, mixed with a variety of exotic blocks. Badland topography is the most characteristic of the Lichi Melange. According to the drilling data of the Chinese Petroleum Company, the thickness of the mlange is greater than 1 km (Meng and Chiang, 1965). The exotic blocks are mostly ophiolitic fragments and sandstone. Other lithological varieties include greywacke, shale, limestone, conglomerate and andesitic agglomerate. The most distinguished exotic block is the so-called East Taiwan Ophiolite (ETO; Liou et al., 1977b). The ETO comprises all the components for a typical ophiolite sequence V peridotite, gabbro, serpentinite, diabiasic dike, plagiogranite, basalt and red clay. Paleontological studies indicate that the mlange contains microfossils of ages ranging from Oligocene to Middle Pliocene (time span of ca. 30 Ma). Based on the youngest fossils, the deposition of the Melange is commonly assumed to begin in the Middle or Upper Pliocene (ca. 3 Ma).

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