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Type: Journal article
Title: Alternative life-history patterns of estuarine fish: barium in otoliths elucidates freshwater residency
Author: Elsdon, T.
Gillanders, B.
Citation: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 2005; 62(5):1143-1152
Publisher: Natl Research Council Canada
Issue Date: 2005
ISSN: 0706-652X
Statement of
Travis S. Elsdon and Bronwyn M. Gillanders
Abstract: Elemental concentrations in fish otoliths (earstones) can reconstruct environmental histories of fish if predictable relationships between the environment and elemental incorporation are established. We assessed whether fresh water occupancy of black bream (Acanthopagrus butcheri) can be inferred from otolith barium concentrations (Ba was standardized to calcium (Ca) and expressed as a ratio, Ba:Ca). Otolith Ba:Ca of fish was correlated with ambient Ba:Ca. Using the natural relationships of increasing ambient and otolith Ba:Ca with decreasing salinity, fish from fresh- and salt-water environments were distinguishable. Fish caught in fresh water had approximately double the otolith Ba:Ca of those from salt-water estuaries, for both summer and winter collections. Fish with otolith Ba:Ca ≤5 µmol·mol–1 were classified as resident in salt water, and those with ≥6 µmol·mol–1 as resident in fresh water. Transects of Ba:Ca across fish otoliths classified fish to fresh- or salt-water environments. Fish were identified as having migratory patterns typical of residents, migrants with irregular patterns of diadromy, or migrants with cyclic patterns of anadromomy. Multiple migratory behaviours occurred in fish from the same estuary, indicating far more complex migratory behaviours than were previously known. The application of otolith Ba:Ca to infer freshwater occupancy of fish has rarely been studied, yet may provide more accurate classifications of estuarine environments than strontium (Sr) isotopes and otolith Sr:Ca.
Description: Copyright © 2005 NRC Canada
RMID: 0020050447
DOI: 10.1139/F05-029
Appears in Collections:Earth and Environmental Sciences publications
Environment Institute Leaders publications
Environment Institute publications

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