Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
|Title:||The deep-sea gorgonian coral Primnoa resedaeformis as an oceanographic monitor|
|Keywords:||deep-sea;gorgonian coral;primnoa resedaeformis;oceanographic monitor|
|Abstract:||<p> Primnoa resedaeformis is a deep-sea gorgonian coral with worldwide distribution and a lifespan of at least several hundred years. Recent work has suggested that it may be possible to obtain extended, high-resolution records of ambient oceanographic conditions from Primnoa skeletons. This thesis focuses on specimens recently collected live from the Northeast Channel, SW of Nova Scotia, from depths of 300-500m. </p> <p> Skeletal microstructure was examined as a prerequisite to geochemical sampling. Skeletons exhibit periodic growth at three distinct scales. Concentric annual rings throughout the skeleton, and sub-annual laminae in the horny axis, measure 200 +1-100 microns and 15 +1-10 microns, respectively. Fine-scale striae in the outer calcite cortex measure 1.5 +1-2 microns. The dark, gorgonin-rich portion of annual rings in the horny axis forms in winter, when currents in the NE Channel are most energetic. Growth in these animals is apparently tied to the passage of currents at seasonal, lunar and tidal frequencies. Annual ring widths in the horny axis could not be successfully cross-dated, however, a prominent dark ring that appears to have been formed in 1976 is present in several of the colonies examined. Prominent dark rings may serve as useful benchmarks in sclerochronology. </p> <p> Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca were measured by laser ablation ICP-MS in the predominantly calcite axial cortex. Across a 1.5°C gradient, Mg/Ca is positively related to temperature. Sr/Ca also increases with temperature, but this may be explained by the influence of Mg/Ca on Sr partitioning, rather than temperature. Near annual-resolution timeseries profiles of Mg/Ca are consistent within and among colonies having different growth rates. Conversion of Mg/Ca profiles to temperatures using a provisional calibration [Mg/Ca (mmollmol) = 4.88(+/-1.09) T (°C) + 70.92 (+/-6.79)] yields a range of values and trends that are consistent with the observational data. Mg/Ca in Primnoa, therefore, is a viable means of monitoring bottom-water temperatures. The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is responsible for a significant component of inter-annual temperature variability in the Scotia-Maine region. Mg/Ca records from older corals could therefore provide extended proxy records of the NAO. </p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Digitized Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
Files in This Item:
|Sherwood_Owen_A_noyear_Masters.pdf||3.42 MB||Adobe PDF||View/Open|
Items in MacSphere are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.