Isotopic Composition of Crassostrea Virginica Shells as Indicator of the Effects of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill
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Through sclerochronological methods, this study examined the effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on C. virginica specimens. Oysters are principal benthic filter feeders that effectively bioaccumulate substances, making them ideal organisms for this study. Stable carbon and oxygen isotope data of modern Gulf of Mexico specimens, a historic Gulf of Mexico specimen, and a specimen collected from Chesapeake Bay were compared. Increasingly negative 8I3C values for the spill-affected specimen samples indicate the addition of organic carbon into the food web, temporally correlating to the Deepwater Horizon event.