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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 473:261-273 (2013)  -  DOI:

Water and otolith chemistry identify exposure of juvenile rockfish to upwelled waters in an open coastal system

Lindsay E. Woodson1,2,*, Brian K. Wells1, Churchill B. Grimes1, Robert P. Franks3, Jarrod A. Santora4, Mark H. Carr

1Fisheries Ecology Division, Southwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA,
110 Shaffer Rd., Santa Cruz, California 95060, USA
2Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and 3Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz, California 95060, USA
4Farallon Institute for Advanced Ecosystem Research, 101 H Street, Suite Q, Petaluma, California 94952, USA

ABSTRACT: We present a novel approach to examine the relationship between pelagic juvenile fish and their environment in an open coastal system using a geospatial technique to relate water and otolith chemistries. We compared the chemistries of water and pelagic juvenile rockfish otoliths Sebastes jordani collected from a coastal upwelling system off central California during May and June 2009. To determine the presence and composition of an upwelling chemical signature, the elements Ba, Sr, and Mg expressed as ratios relative to Ca were quantified in the water and outer otolith margin using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Recently upwelled water, as indicated by a strong inverse relationship with water temperature, had an elevated Ba:Ca concentration. Using all 3 element ratios, cluster analysis and multivariate analysis of variance were used to identify 3 distinct chemical signatures for otolith and water samples. When mapped, these signatures displayed marked geospatial variability that we attributed to mesoscale upwelling dynamics. Canonical discriminant function analysis results indicated that the relative contribution of each element to the 3 signatures was similar between water and otoliths. Interestingly, otoliths containing upwelling signatures (high Ba:Ca) did not match spatially with upwelling signatures in the water. A directional-dependence analysis (spatial cross-covariance) revealed the highest covariance between water and otolith chemistries at a distance between 50 and 100 km apart, suggesting southern movement or transport of fish.

KEY WORDS: Upwelling · Central California · Barium · Multivariate statistics · Geospatial statistics · ICP-MS

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Cite this article as: Woodson LE, Wells BK, Grimes CB, Franks RP, Santora JA, Carr MH (2013) Water and otolith chemistry identify exposure of juvenile rockfish to upwelled waters in an open coastal system. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 473:261-273.

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