Environmental DNA in Ocean Observing

Summary and Expectations

The field of environmental DNA (eDNA) is exploding with analysis techniques, autonomous systems and information management evolving and improving rapidly. This session will provide a brief overview of eDNA measurement and issues, organizational efforts by the international eDNA community, improvements in laboratory and in situ techniques, advances in the use of eDNA for ecosystem assessments, and the challenges remaining. We anticipate developing recommendations to advance international use of eDNA in global ocean observing systems.

Expected Outcomes/Recommendations

  • Build a coordinated, distributed eDNA monitoring network leveraging existing programs; include acoustic, optical, traditional and other environmental measurements when possible.
  • Develop internationally accepted practices for marine eDNAcollection, analysis, processing, sample archival and data management.
  • Greatly expand current genomic reference libraries for marine species prioritizing groups based on user needs (EOVs, commercially important, invasive, etc.).