Faculty Mentor Name

Hillary Eaton, Matthew Valente

Format Preference

Poster

Abstract

Recent research has shown the viability of environmental DNA (eDNA) analysis as a tool for identifying species presence in aquatic ecosystems. However, there is limited research indicating the feasibility of eDNA as a survey tool in water sources such as springs and stock tanks. Because of the scarcity of water in the high desert landscape of Arizona, natural springs and stock tanks are an important water resource. In this study, we examined whether 16S rRNA metabarcoding could detect mammal eDNA in springs and stock tanks in the Prescott National Forest. During summer 2019, we collected and analyzed water samples at eight sites, including five natural springs and three stock tanks. Across all sites, samples resulted in the detection of eight vertebrate species, including one amphibian, the American Bullfrog Lithobates catesbeiana, one bird, the Mallard Anas platyrhynchos, and seven mammal species, including the American Black Bear Ursus americanus, Mule Deer Odocoileus hemionus, and two squirrel species from the Genus Sciurus. However, of the 1.9 million sequences generated during sequencing, 1.85 million sequences belonged to invertebrate species. This suggests amplification of invertebrate eDNA associated with the 16S primers, which may interfere with the detection of vertebrate eDNA sequences in these systems.

  • POSTER PRESENTATION
  • ARIZONA SPACE GRANT AWARD
  • IGNITE AWARD

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Environmental DNA Metabarcoding Detects Mammal use of Stock Tanks and Natural Springs on the Prescott National Forest

Recent research has shown the viability of environmental DNA (eDNA) analysis as a tool for identifying species presence in aquatic ecosystems. However, there is limited research indicating the feasibility of eDNA as a survey tool in water sources such as springs and stock tanks. Because of the scarcity of water in the high desert landscape of Arizona, natural springs and stock tanks are an important water resource. In this study, we examined whether 16S rRNA metabarcoding could detect mammal eDNA in springs and stock tanks in the Prescott National Forest. During summer 2019, we collected and analyzed water samples at eight sites, including five natural springs and three stock tanks. Across all sites, samples resulted in the detection of eight vertebrate species, including one amphibian, the American Bullfrog Lithobates catesbeiana, one bird, the Mallard Anas platyrhynchos, and seven mammal species, including the American Black Bear Ursus americanus, Mule Deer Odocoileus hemionus, and two squirrel species from the Genus Sciurus. However, of the 1.9 million sequences generated during sequencing, 1.85 million sequences belonged to invertebrate species. This suggests amplification of invertebrate eDNA associated with the 16S primers, which may interfere with the detection of vertebrate eDNA sequences in these systems.

  • POSTER PRESENTATION
  • ARIZONA SPACE GRANT AWARD
  • IGNITE AWARD