We understand the complex sampling challenges faced when completing invertebrate surveys. DNA metabarcoding empowers you to identify invertebrate and macroinvertebrate communities at unprecedented levels of efficiency, overcoming the barriers associated with conventional morphological identification and providing a scalable, objective and auditable approach to biodiversity surveying.
The potential of DNA-based methods is clear when applied to invertebrate surveys- whether it’s a bulk sample of invertebrates, or an eDNA sample, we can use metabarcoding to process your samples and return highly accurate data about the invertebrates present in your system.
From a bulk sample of invertebrates, the NatureMetrics Invertebrate DNA Metabarcoding services can provide you with high-resolution data on the species present in the sample, enabling you to detect and monitor species and measure an ecosystems biological response to environmental stresses. Depending on the trapping method you use to collect your samples, there are various considerations that we can help with when planning your project.
You can detect aquatic macroinvertebrates with our aquatic eDNA services. Simply collect and send your environmental DNA samples and we will analyse them for the presence of macroinvertebrates. We are proud to offer this unique service for invertebrates. It is non-invasive and generates rapid and accurate data about the macroinvertebrates in your system. For more information on detecting invertebrates from aquatic eDNA, visit our “eDNA from water” page. Stay on this page if you’re interested in reading more about services using bulk invertebrate samples.
We will work with you to understand the methods that will best suit your project, whether it’s using bulk invertebrate or environmental DNA samples, and how best to treat your samples if you’re collecting bulk samples. We can also recommend how to adapt your current procedures and how we can complement your existing processes to ensure you get the best invertebrate data for your project needs
How does the process work?
Identifying invertebrate species from bulk samples has never been more straightforward.
You can expect results within eight working-weeks of your samples reaching our lab. We can also offer a rapid turnaround for this service if required.
Please contact us for a bespoke quote, to place an order or if you would like more information about our services. If you have already registered with us, you can visit my.naturemetrics to place an order.
Considerations for your invertebrate survey
You should conduct any necessary morphological examinations before sending your samples to us as samples are ground for DNA extraction.
Some conventional collecting fluids (e.g. ethylene glycol), aren’t great at preserving DNA, and some should be avoided at all costs (e.g. formalin). So if you’re not sure what to use, please get in touch and we’ll help you find an alternative.
Invertebrate Metabarcoding returns presence-absence data, rather than abundance data, and can’t currently be used for the Water Framework Directive (WFD) monitoring of benthic macroinvertebrates. It is, however, an excellent option for processing large numbers of benthic macroinvertebrate samples for projects outside the scope of the WFD.
Most (c.75%) UK terrestrial invertebrates are represented in reference databases allowing us to identify them from DNA sequences. However, we can only return a higher-level taxonomy for the species that aren’t represented in any reference database, (e.g. ‘a species of Chironomid’). If it is vital to your project that you identify all taxa to species level, then we can work with you to develop a local reference database.
Behind the Science:
NatureMetrics was born with innovative macroinvertebrate DNA-based surveys at the heart of our services. Members of our senior team completed PhD research on insect metabarcoding. As a result, and thanks to the diverse projects we’ve been a part of, we are international experts in this field, setting the standard for macroinvertebrate DNA analyses and pushing the boundaries with research and development.
Explore the scope of DNA Metabarcoding further in our Article: DNA Metabarcoding of Invertebrates to Evaluate Outcomes of Ecological Restoration.
You can turn to NatureMetrics if you need;
To revolutionise your understanding of the biodiversity at your site.
Advice on how to overcome the challenges associated with invertebrate surveys.
Access to world-leading expertise and latest innovations.
High accuracy results yielded from the latest Metabarcoding technologies.
To enhance your environmental monitoring programme through further data.
A partner who is honest and transparent about any limitations to the technology.
Guidance and support throughout all stages of your project cycle.
As leaders of DNA-based analyses, we’re constantly driving the scope and impact of our technologies and services further. We’re currently working on researching and developing Macroinvertebrate surveys from water eDNA samples. Find out more about eDNA from Water.
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