Elucidating jellyfish ecology with statolith microchemistry
Alatina moseri spend time in the deep sea off Hawaii and at most times move into shallow waters 8-10 days after the full moon to spawn. It is assumed that the juveniles metamorphose from polyps that are in these shallow waters and then move into deep water. Samples of Alatina moseri have reportedly been taken from 500-700m. The aim of my honours project is to investigate the life history of Alatina moseri through the use of elemental chemistry of the statoliths. Daily increments in the statoliths will be used to identify different periods of the life history of the jellyfish and LA-ICP-MS will be used to determine the elemental chemistry of individuals from the time of metamorphosis to capture at the time of spawning. Broader relationships between temperature and elemental ratios will also be investigated through descriptive and experimental studies of other box jellyfishes.