Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Science Center

Aqueous Geochemistry Research and Development
Method Development

Development of Elemental and Isotopic Fingerprinting Tools

Bronwen Wang

Elemental and isotopic geochemical fingerprints

Photo of carapace of Tanner crab.We are evaluating if lithological and mineralogical, and hydrological differences within Glacier Bay produce differences in the elemental concentrations and isotopic variations in the marine biota. We are targeting Tanner Crabs (Chionoecetes bairdi) because: tanner crabs undergo a final molt to adults after which they do not molt again (a terminal molt) making them well suited for preserving elemental and isotopic difference that may be present bays and coves of Glacier Bay, they occur throughout the bay, and they are an important commercial fishery species in Southeast Alaska.

Photo of lab equipment.Specific questions to be addressed are:

  • What elemental and isotopic differences are detectable in the Tanner Crab and in what part, shell or meat, of the crab?
  • Can these differences be related to local geological and watershed characteristics of the bays and coves within Glacier Bay?
  • Are elemental difference associated the biogenic calcite in the shell and, if so, can this alter the elemental signature with time?

Map of study area in Alaska.This effort could lead to elemental and isotopic fingerprinting tools for evaluating Tanner Crab stock movement Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. Such tools could provide a broad scale-low cost method of studying how Tanner crabs move within the preserve as they develop. Hypotheses regarding nursery, rearing, and recruitment to fishing areas could than be tested at a scales that traditional tagging methods would be impractical.

Products

Reports in Proceedings of Professional Technical Meetings

Wang, B., Wanty, R.B., and Vohden, J. 2005, Geochemistry of surface-waters in mineralized and non-mineralized areas of the Yukon-Tanana uplands, in Proceedings of the World Water Congress, v. 173, p. 245-254.

Abstracts, Presentations, and Posters for Professional Technical Meetings

Wang, B., Crock, J., Seal, R., Taggart, S., Mondragon, J., Andrews, A., Nielson, J., 2004, Evaluation of geochemical signatures as natural fingerprints to aid in determining Tanner Crab movement in Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska: Glacier Bay Symposium, Juneau, Alaska, October 2004.

Wang, B, Wanty, R.B., Vohden, J., 2005, Geochemistry of surface-waters in mineralized and non-mineralized areas of the Yukon-Tanana Uplands, Alaska: Environmental and Water Resources Institute of America, Society of Civil Engineering Conference, Anchorage, Alaska, May 2005.

Wang, B., Wanty, R., and Vohden, J., 2005, Geochemistry of surface-waters in mineralized and non-mineralized areas of the Yukon-Tanana Uplands, Alaska [abs.]: Geological Society of America 2005 Annual Meeting, Salt Lake City, Utah, October 16-19, 2005, Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, no. 7, p. 179. (Abstract and presentation) Available online at http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005AM/finalprogram/abstract_90260.htm.

Contact Information

Bronwen Wang
4230 University Drive, Suite 201
Anchorage, AK 99508-4664
Phone: (907) 786-7110
Email: bwang

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Mineral Resources Program
Eastern Central GMEG Alaska Minerals Information Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Spatial Data