Controls, Variation, and a Record of Climate Change in Detailed Stable Isotope Record in a Single Bryozoan Skeleton
The long-lived (about 20 yr) bryozoan Adeonellopsis sp. from Doubtful Sound, New Zealand, precipitates aragonite in isotopic equilibrium with seawater, exerting no metabolic or kinetic effects. Oxygen isotope ratios (δ18O) in 61 subsamples (along three branches of a single unaltered colony) range from -0.09 to +0.68‰ PDB (mean = +0.36‰ PDB). Carbon isotope ratios (δ13C) range from +0.84 to +2.18‰ PDB (mean = +1.69‰ PDB). Typical of cool-water carbonates, δ18O-derived water temperatures range from 14.2 to 17.5 °C. Adeonellopsis has a minimum temperature growth threshold of 14 °C, recording only a partial record of environmental variation. By correlating seawater temperatures derived from δ18O with the Southern Oscillation Index, however, we were able to detect major events such as the 1983 El Niño. Interannual climatic variation can be recorded in skeletal carbonate isotopes. The range of within-colony isotopic variability found in this study (0.77‰ in δ18O and 1.34 in δ13C) means that among-colony variation must be treated cautiously. Temperate bryozoan isotopes have been tested in less than 2% of described extant species – this highly variable phylum is not yet fully understood.
Smith, Abigail M. and Marcus M. Key, Jr. "Controls, Variation and a Record of Climate Change in Detailed Stable Isotope Record in a Single Bryozoan Skeleton." Quarternary Research 61, no. 2 (2004): 123-133.