by Dr. Tiara Moore
Environmental DNA, or what I lovingly call eDNA, is the genetic material that is captured in a water soil or even air sample. Similar to a detective that is able to identify a criminal who left their DNA at the scene of a crime, scientists, like myself, are able to identify animals, plants, bacteria found at the scene of a forest or ocean and provide a census of who has lived or lurked in that ecosystem.
In the depths of the Ellsworth Creek Preserve forest we found over 1000 different species, across 10 phylum and scientific kingdoms. From Annelids (worms) to Basidiomycetes (fungus) from Arthropods (bees) to Chordates (humans)! Multiple species have either lurked or lived in the soils of Ellsworth.
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