Date of Award

Summer 1984

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Ocean & Earth Sciences


Geological Sciences

Committee Director

Stephen J. Culver

Committee Member

Carl F. Koch

Committee Member

Martin A. Buzas

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.G4G37


Automated video digitization and closed-form Fourier series analysis were used to investigate the applicability of benthic foraminiferal test morphology for paleo-bathymetric/paleoenvironmental reconstructions. Sample relationships and harmonics with the greatest power for discriminating between samples were determined using canonical discriminant analysis. Samples were eleven short cores obtained from the northwestern Gulf of Mexico. Three species of Bolivina were analyzed, B. albatrossi, B. lowmani, and B. subspinescens.

Results show populations of Bolivina albatrossi from the upper bathyal and upper-middle bathyal zones to have more triangular tests and lobulate chambers than lower-middle and lower bathyal zone populations. Specimens of Bolivina subspinescens demonstrated a progressive decrease in spine coarseness and chamber spherity with increased water depth. Morphological variation in Bolivani lowmani was not generally consistent with bathymetry. Fourier series amplitude data was most effective in analyzing gross shape components. This approach is a rapid and objective method of analyzing benthic test morphology and has applications to paleoenvironmental reconstructions.


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