Proposed Abstract Title

Using benthic foraminifera to track acidification in the Salish Sea

Type of Presentation

Poster

Session Title

Ocean Acidification in the Salish Sea

Location

2016SSEC

Description

This project uses benthic foraminifera as a proxy for low pH in Puget Sound sediments over a temporal range from 1974 to the present. Here we report preliminary results of our investigation. Benthic foraminifera occur as agglutinate and calcareous forms; calcareous foraminifera biomineralize their shells from calcium carbonate and are thus a sink for carbon in the oceans. Both agglutinate and calcareous foraminifera are consumed by a wide variety of mobile benthic invertebrates and bottom feeding fish, therefore they are an important component near the base of the food chain. They are excellent study organisms because they are small (typically

Investigations into foraminiferal assemblages in different embayments throughout Puget Sound indicate that partial dissolution of shells is widespread. In places, 100% of all calcareous individuals show signs of dissolution, e.g. pitting, holes, loss of surface layers. Some sediment samples, most notably those from areas with sluggish circulation, have only agglutinate foraminifera. The three most common calcareous foraminifera species in Puget Sound, Elphidiella hannai, Cribroelphidium excavatum and Buccella frigida all show partial dissolution, however, E. hannai is most heavily impacted, suggesting it is more susceptible to dissolution than other species.

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Using benthic foraminifera to track acidification in the Salish Sea

2016SSEC

This project uses benthic foraminifera as a proxy for low pH in Puget Sound sediments over a temporal range from 1974 to the present. Here we report preliminary results of our investigation. Benthic foraminifera occur as agglutinate and calcareous forms; calcareous foraminifera biomineralize their shells from calcium carbonate and are thus a sink for carbon in the oceans. Both agglutinate and calcareous foraminifera are consumed by a wide variety of mobile benthic invertebrates and bottom feeding fish, therefore they are an important component near the base of the food chain. They are excellent study organisms because they are small (typically

Investigations into foraminiferal assemblages in different embayments throughout Puget Sound indicate that partial dissolution of shells is widespread. In places, 100% of all calcareous individuals show signs of dissolution, e.g. pitting, holes, loss of surface layers. Some sediment samples, most notably those from areas with sluggish circulation, have only agglutinate foraminifera. The three most common calcareous foraminifera species in Puget Sound, Elphidiella hannai, Cribroelphidium excavatum and Buccella frigida all show partial dissolution, however, E. hannai is most heavily impacted, suggesting it is more susceptible to dissolution than other species.