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GenePools: Investigating the life that dwells in garden ponds (NECR454)

The GenePools project was set up to trial the combination of citizen science with DNA metabarcoding techniques to explore biodiversity within urban ponds. In this pilot project, we recruited around 200 citizen scientists from London, Bristol and Newcastle who took filtered water samples from their local and garden ponds. These samples were then analysed using four different DNA metabarcoding assays – for vertebrates; invertebrates; prokaryotes and microeukaryotes. This report describes the work undertaken by RSK ADAS, who were commissioned to prepare and send out DNA sampling kits to the citizen scientists, and who performed two assays for vertebrates and invertebrates. Other aspects of GenePools, including recruitment and engagement of citizen scientists; and further analysis of the GenePools results; were led by other partners and will be published separately.

GenePools is a collaboration between Natural England, the Natural History Museum, the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science, and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee. It is funded through the NCEA (Natural Capital and Ecosystems Assessment) programme; a Defra funded programme which aims to deliver high quality evidence to assess the extent and condition of biodiversity, ecosystems and natural capital assets across our terrestrial, coastal and marine environments.

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NECR454 Edition 1 Genepools: investigating the life that dwells in garden ponds, PDF, 2.9 MB 2023/05/30