[Coral-List] ASLO 2008 session on cold-water corals

Owen Sherwood osherwood at gmail.com
Tue Jan 8 08:41:18 EST 2008

Dear Colleagues,
       Dan Sinclair and I are organizing a session at the June, 2008
ASLO Summer meeting in St. John's, Newfoundland on the
sclerochronology and biogeochemistry of cold-water corals (full
description below). We would like to encourage you to submit an
abstract, and would appreciate your help in spreading the word to
students and colleagues. We hope to see you in St. John's!

Best wishes,

Meeting website:

Sclerochronology and biogeochemistry of cold-water corals
Owen Sherwood
Daniel Sinclair

Interest in the paleoceanographic utility of cold-water corals
continues to grow. From its infancy over a decade ago, the science of
paleo-reconstruction has evolved in two principal directions. Single
long-lived Gorgonians promise continuous high-resolution records over
century to millennial time scales. In contrast, cores taken down
through deep reefs yield fragments of Scleractinian corals that may
contain snapshots of seasonal-resolution climate over millions of

However, development of useful climate records from either approach
proves challenging. Isotope and element 'vital effects' are ubiquitous
in cold-water scleractinians; can we extract meaningful environmental
records in light of this? How do we interpret the isotopic and
elemental composition in the 2-part mineral-organic skeletons of
cold-water gorgonians? Are geochemical records reliable and
reproducible, and are they diagenetically stable? What are the best
techniques for developing accurate age models? How do we calibrate
records given the paucity of in-situ data in the deep ocean? The
purpose of this session is to provide a forum for the presentation of
results that explore all aspects of sclerochronology and
biogeochemistry of cold-water corals.

Owen Sherwood, PhD
NSERC Postdoctoral fellow
Department of Biology
Memorial University
St. John's, NL, Canada
A1B 3X9
Work: (709) 737-8025
Cell: (709) 697-3651

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