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The shell of the Great Scallop Pecten maximus as a high frequency archive of paleoenvironmental change

Abstract : We investigate the environmental and biological controls on oxygen isotope ratios in the shells of modern Pecten maximus bivalves collected alive in the bay of Brest (France). Seasonal δ18O profiles obtained by drilling the daily calcite ridges deposited at the surface of the left valve were compared with in situ measurements of temperature and salinity. We show that P. maximus δ18O values accurately track seasonal variations in bottom water temperature. Shell growth rate has no significant effect on shell δ18O values. Our study demonstrates that daily variations in water temperature can be reconstructed within about 0.5°C. Temperatures estimated with the paleotemperature equation established in this study, were compared with temperatures derived from previously published equations. The comparison indicates that the most commonly used paleotemperature equation for biogenic calcite [Epstein et al., 1953] provides inaccurate temperature estimates, but the Kim and O'Neil [1997] equation, established from abiogenic calcite precipitation, provides results very similar to ours, and should therefore be used for scallop individuals coming from populations where proper empirical calibration cannot be done. Pecten maximus bivalves precipitate calcite in isotopic equilibrium with seawater, produce large daily growth striae, are stenohaline and are well preserved in archeological and geological deposits making them an excellent high frequency archive of paleoenvironmental change.
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Contributor : Anne Lorrain Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, February 2, 2010 - 12:18:39 PM
Last modification on : Friday, January 21, 2022 - 3:33:20 AM
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Laurent Chauvaud, Anne Lorrain, Robert B. Dunbar, Yves-Marie Paulet, Gérard Thouzeau, et al.. The shell of the Great Scallop Pecten maximus as a high frequency archive of paleoenvironmental change. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, AGU and the Geochemical Society, 2005, 6 (8), pp.1-15. ⟨10.1029/2004GC000890⟩. ⟨hal-00452414⟩



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