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:

Session description:
Sclerochronology and biogeochemistry of cold-water corals
Chairs: 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 years.

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