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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Mar. Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00515

Seasonal fish assemblage structure using environmental DNA in the Yangtze Estuary and its adjacent waters

  • 1CAS Key Laboratory of Marine Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
  • 2Laboratory for Marine Ecology and Environmental Science, Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, China
  • 3Center for Ocean Mega-Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
  • 4Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Japan
  • 5Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo, Japan
  • 6Key Laboratory of Marine Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Institute of Oceanology (CAS), China

The fisheries resources of the Yangtze Estuary and its adjacent waters have undergone dramatic declines as a consequence of environmental changes and human activities, with traditional ecological investigations demonstrating progressive decreases in species diversity and annual numbers in the fisheries resource. Environmental DNA (eDNA) technology has been demonstrated as an effective tool by many studies for detecting fish species, monitoring fish biodiversity and indicate the fish abundance. In the present study, we chose the Yangtze Estuary and its adjacent waters as a primary research area to investigate fish assemblage structure using eDNA technology. A total of 50 eDNA samples were collected in the estuary in 2018. The results showed that 41 operational taxonomic units were identified from three seasons, with 18, 12 and 33 fish species associated specifically with spring, summer and autumn, respectively. The fish assemblage differed significantly among seasons. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that water temperature, salinity, and dissolved oxygen were the main environmental factors affecting structure of the seasonal assemblages. Results of the present study indicate that eDNA technology can be an effective tool not only for fisheries monitoring, but might also importantly assist marine resources conservation, sustainable exploitation of fisheries, the aquatic products processing industry, eco-friendly development, and socioeconomic stability.

Keywords: Yangtze estuary, marine fish, Assemblage structure, environmental DNA, MiSeq, seasonal assemblages

Received: 28 May 2019; Accepted: 05 Aug 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Zhang, Yoshizawa, Iwasaki and Xian. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence:
Prof. Hui Zhang, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, CAS Key Laboratory of Marine Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Qingdao, China, zhanghui@qdio.ac.cn
Prof. Weiwei Xian, Key Laboratory of Marine Ecology and Environmental Sciences, Institute of Oceanology (CAS), Qingdao, 266071, Shandong Province, China, wwxian@qdio.ac.cn