One water bucket to find them all: Detecting fish, mammals, and birds from a single sample

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  • September 13, 2021
  • In times of exacerbating biodiversity loss, reliable data on species occurrence are essential. Environmental DNA (eDNA) – DNA released from organisms into the water – is increasingly used to detect fishes in biodiversity monitoring campaigns. However, eDNA turns out to be capable of providing much more than fish occurrence data, including information on other vertebrates. A study, published in the open-access journal Metabarcoding and Metagenomics, demonstrates how comprehensively vertebrate diversity can be assessed at no additional costs.

    Scientists took a rare chance to prove we can quantify biodiversity by ‘testing the water’

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  • December 4, 2020
  • Recent study conducted at a UK fishery farm provides new evidence that DNA from water samples can accurately determine fish abundance and biomass Organisms excrete DNA in their surroundings through metabolic waste, sloughed skin cells or gametes, and this genetic material is referred to as environmental DNA (eDNA). As eDNA can be collected directly from […]

    Nature Conservation Special: Guidelines for the monitoring of beetles protected in Europe

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  • August 31, 2017
  • In a follow-up to a recent special issue, 8 research articles outline a set of verified guidelines for the monitoring of 5 saproxylic beetle species listed in the Habitats Directive In a set of eight research publications, scientists tested various methods for the monitoring of five European saproxylic (i.e. dependent on dead wood) beetle species […]

    Efficiency of insect biodiversity monitoring via Malaise trap samples and DNA barcoding

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  • December 5, 2016
  • The massive decline of over 75% insect biomass reported from Germany between 1989 and 2013 by expert citizen scientists proves the urgent need for new methods and standards for fast and wide-scale biodiversity assessments. If we cannot understand species composition, as well as their diversity patterns and reasons behind them, we will fail not only […]