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Type: Journal article
Title: Element composition of shark vertebrae shows promise as a natural tag
Author: Pistevos, J.
Reis-Santos, P.
Izzo, C.
Gillanders, B.
Citation: Marine and Freshwater Research, 2019; 70(12):1722-1733
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Issue Date: 2019
ISSN: 1323-1650
Statement of
J.C.A. Pistevos, P. Reis-Santos, C. Izzo and B.M. Gillanders
Abstract: Reconstructing movements and environmental histories of sharks may be possible by using the element composition of vertebrae, but unlocking such possibilities requires an understanding of the effects of extrinsic and intrinsic factors on element composition. We assessed water temperature and pH effects (independently and in combination) on vertebral chemistry of Port Jackson sharks while accounting for intrinsic factors (condition and sex) using indoor aquaria and outdoor mesocosm environments, where the latter may better reflect natural field conditions. We analysed eight element : Ca ratios (⁷Li, ⁸B, ²⁴Mg, ⁵⁵Mn, ⁶⁵Cu, ⁸⁸Sr, ¹³⁸Ba and ²³⁸U) by laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry and found positive temperature-dependant responses for multiple elements, including B : Ca, Mn : Ca, Sr : Ca and Ba : Ca (r² = 0.43, 0.22, 0.60 and 0.35 respectively), whereas pH had a minor effect on vertebral Mg : Ca and Li : Ca (r² = 0.10 and 0.31 respectively). As shown for teleost otoliths, condition affected element composition (Mn : Ca), suggesting potential physiological influences on element uptake. The suitability of vertebral chemistry as a natural tag appears to be element specific, and likely governed by a suite of potentially codependent extrinsic and intrinsic factors. Overall, variations in vertebrae chemistry show promise to reconstruct movements and habitat use of cartilaginous fishes. Yet, further research is required to understand the ubiquitous nature of the findings presented here.
Keywords: Acidification; condition; elasmobranchs; Heterodontus portusjacksoni; hydroxyapatite; vertebrae chemistry
Rights: Journal Compilation © CSIRO 2019 Open Access CC BY-NC-ND
DOI: 10.1071/MF18423
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