Elemental concentrations and stable (δ18O, δ13C) isotopic ratios in otoliths of young-of-the year (YOY) Tautoga onitis (Tautog) captured in nurseries in Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Virginia were determined using otolith micro-chemistry. Multi-chemical signatures differed significantly among the distinct nurseries among regions (MANOVA: P < 0.001) and between years (MANOVA: P < 0.001). Classification accuracy for Tautog nurseries among regions ranged from 92% to 96% for each of the two years. Since accurate classification of juvenile Tautog to their nursery sites was achieved, otolith chemistry can potentially be used as a natural habitat tag in assigning adult Tautog to their respective estuarine nurseries, but it is important to consider that the chemical signals may change annually.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics