Oceanic sediment properties that are closely related to former environmental (e.g. climatic) parameters are called "proxies". Planktonic foraminifera are small animals which make up part of the plankton. Certain element concentrations, element ratios and isotopic ratios of their calcite shell found in the sediment can be used as "proxies" reflecting the state of the ocean during the life of the animal; they supply useful information for the reconstruction of environmental parameters. Time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS) was used to examine the inner and outer part of foraminiferal shells, as well as foraminiferal shells dissolved in HCL. High resolution elemental images and mass spectra were obtained from the foraminifera. The data show that TOF-SIMS is a useful technique for determining the elemental distribution and for measuring isotope ratios such as dB with high precision in a single foraminiferal shell.