Geochemical Response of Pocillopora Damicornis Coral to Changes in Temperature, Salinity, and Oxygen Isotopic Composition of Modern Seawater.
We intend to present geochemical data from Pocillopora Damicornis coral sample that experienced rapid change on its growth environment. The coral specimen was collected from Baja California, La Gaviota Island, Mexico, with an observed annual temperature range of 20-30°C. The specimen was then replanted to the running seawater aquarium on the coast of Caribbean Sea, Puerto Morelos, Mexico in July 2009, and kept there under constant temperature of 28ºC ± 0.5 ºC for 9 months.
Powdered coral samples will be obtained using the New Wave Micromill housed at the Department of Geosciences, MSU. Samples will be milled incrementally across accretionary growth following the organism’s ontogeny. δ18O will then be measured using Isotopic Ratio Mass Spectrometry. We will present the obtained shift of coral δ18O as a result of the change in habitat, and compare the results with δ18O data predicted from temperature and salinity differences between Baja California and Caribbean Sea.