Otolith Microchemistry

Using Otolith Microchemistry to Establish Connectivity among Essential Fish Habitats.

We are using Laser Ablation–Inductively Coupled Plasma–Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) to quantify the trace elemental chemistry of the otoliths for a variety of marine fishes that inhabit the Gulf of Mexico. Our primary goal involves tracking ontogenetic migrations of fishes between inshore estuarine nursery habitats with offshore reefs occupied by adults. Establishing the connectivity among these essential fish habitats allows us to identify those nursery sites that contribute the most towards replenishing adult populations.

Multiple otolith thin sections are mounted on a glass slide and placed with external reference material on a custom sample stage.
Multiple otolith thin sections are mounted on a glass slide and placed with external reference material on a custom sample stage.
Otolith material is ablated using a Photo-Machines Analyte.193 Excimer ArF UV Laser Ablation (LA) system and sent to an Agilent Technologies 7500CX Quadrupole Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS) where ion count rates are determined for up to 24 elements.
Otolith material is ablated using a Photo-Machines Analyte.193 Excimer ArF UV Laser Ablation (LA) system and sent to an Agilent Technologies 7500CX Quadrupole Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS) where ion count rates are determined for up to 24 elements.
The raw transient signal data generated by LA-ICP-MS assays of otoliths are parsed and processed using custom software written for the Fathom Toolbox for Matlab.
The raw transient signal data generated by LA-ICP-MS assays of otoliths are parsed and processed using custom software written for the Fathom Toolbox for Matlab.
Replicate spot scans are used to sample discrete time periods during the life history of a fish.
Replicate spot scans are used to sample discrete time periods during the life history of a fish.
Discrete data are generated from replicate spot scans.
Discrete data are generated from replicate spot scans.
Line scans traversing the surface of thin sections are used to construct otolith core-to-edge profiles depicting life-history transitions and movement among water masses.
Line scans traversing the surface of thin sections are used to construct otolith core-to-edge profiles depicting life-history transitions and movement among water masses.
Time series data are generated from line scans.
Time series data are generated from line scans.
The processed otolith microchemistry data are analyzed using state-of-the-art nonparametric (i.e., distribution-free) multivariate hypothesis testing methods and machine learning techniques.
The processed otolith microchemistry data are analyzed using state-of-the-art nonparametric (i.e., distribution-free) multivariate hypothesis testing methods and machine learning techniques.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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