No Cover Image

Journal article 337 views 70 downloads

Quantitative assessment of fish larvae community composition in spawning areas using metabarcoding of bulk samples

Frances Ratcliffe, Tamsyn Uren Webster Orcid Logo, Deiene Rodriguez Barreto, Richard O'Rorke, Carlos Garcia De Leaniz Orcid Logo, Sofia Consuegra del Olmo Orcid Logo

Ecological Applications, Volume: 31, Issue: 3

Swansea University Authors: Frances Ratcliffe, Tamsyn Uren Webster Orcid Logo, Deiene Rodriguez Barreto, Richard O'Rorke, Carlos Garcia De Leaniz Orcid Logo, Sofia Consuegra del Olmo Orcid Logo

  • 56117.pdf

    PDF | Version of Record

    © 2021 The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License

    Download (751.93KB)

Check full text

DOI (Published version): 10.1002/eap.2284

Abstract

Accurate assessment of larval community composition in spawning areas is essential for fisheries management and conservation but is often hampered by the cryptic nature of many larvae, which renders them difficult to identify morphologically. Metabarcoding is a rapid and cost-effective method to mon...

Full description

Published in: Ecological Applications
ISSN: 1051-0761 1939-5582
Published: Wiley 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa56117
Tags: Add Tag
No Tags, Be the first to tag this record!
Abstract: Accurate assessment of larval community composition in spawning areas is essential for fisheries management and conservation but is often hampered by the cryptic nature of many larvae, which renders them difficult to identify morphologically. Metabarcoding is a rapid and cost-effective method to monitor early life stages for management and environmental impact assessment purposes but its quantitative capability is under discussion. We compared metabarcoding with traditional morphological identification to evaluate taxonomic precision and reliability of abundance estimates, using 332 fish larvae from multinet hauls (0–50 m depth) collected at 14 offshore sampling sites in the Irish and Celtic seas. To improve quantification accuracy (relative abundance estimates), the amount of tissue for each specimen was standardized and mitochondrial primers (12S gene) with conserved binding sites were used. Relative family abundance estimated from metabarcoding reads and morphological assessment were positively correlated, as well as taxon richness (RS = 0.81, P = 0.007) and diversity (RS = 0.90, P = 0.002). Spatial patterns of community composition did not differ significantly between metabarcoding and morphological assessments. Our results show that DNA metabarcoding of bulk tissue samples can be used to monitor changes in fish larvae abundance and community composition. This represents a feasible, efficient, and faster alternative to morphological methods that can be applied to terrestrial and aquatic habitats.
Keywords: 12S; bulk samples; Celtic sea; fish larvae; Irish sea; metabarcoding; quantification
College: College of Science
Funders: European Regional Development Fund
Issue: 3