Title

Natural Variability and Effects of Cleaning and Storage Procedures on Vertebral Chemistry of the Blacktip Shark Carcharhinus limbatus

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-2017

Department

Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

Abstract

Key methodological assumptions regarding the degree of natural variability and influence of sample handling and storage of elasmobranch vertebral chemistry were assessed using laser-ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Vertebral chemistry of juvenile blacktip sharks Carcharhinus limbatus was examined to identify whether differences existed among different regions of the vertebral column, between thoracic vertebrae of individual fish or within individual vertebrae. Additionally, the effects of bleach exposure and storage in ethanol on vertebral chemistry were compared. No significant variation in vertebral chemistry was found among different regions of the vertebral column or between thoracic vertebrae, but significant differences among transect locations within individual vertebrae were observed. The variation at all three levels appears comparable with published data on sagittal otoliths of bilaterally symmetrical teleost fishes. The experimental assessment of potential treatment effects indicated vertebral chemistry was not significantly affected by bleach or exposure to ethanol. Taken together, these results support the idea that vertebrae taken from the same region of the vertebral column can be treated as equivalent and at least certain elements remain robust to exposure to bleach and ethanol.

Publication Title

Journal of Fish Biology

Volume

91

Issue

5

First Page

1284

Last Page

1300

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