The influence of environmental factors on the micro-chemical composition of cephalopod statoliths
In this thesis, the influence of different environmental factors on the chemical composition of cephalopod statoliths was investigated. On the basis of laboratory experiments under controlled conditions, it is now possible to qualify the influences of salinity, temperature and diet on the concentrations of several elements in the statoliths. Analytical results indicate that the incorporation of a number of elements is influenced by environmental factors. Barium and iodine appear to be the most suitable indicators for temperature. The suitability of statolith micro-chemistry for field-studies has been proven as well. Statolith trace element compositional zoning reflects very well the life history and ontogenetic habitat-shifts of the boreoatlantic armhook squid Gonatus fabricii. Further, this thesis gives valuable insights into the microstructure of statoliths and the elemental nano-scale distribution in daily increments. For the first time, the application of NanoSIMS NS50 provided distribution patterns of calcium, strontium and sodium in cephalopod statoliths with a spatial resolution of 400nm. The results of this study provide an essential basis for future investigations in the field, probably leading into further understanding of yet unknown migration patterns and spawning grounds of various cephalopod species.