Vacuuming DNA from air can reveal which animals are present in an area

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Environment 23 July 2021

By Michael Le Page

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When gathering DNA from zoos, researchers detected nearby native species like the European hedgehog

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Vacuuming DNA out of the air can reveal which animals are present in an area, two teams have independently shown. The approach could make it much easier to monitor wildlife in terrestrial environments around the world, and even help study airflow.

“This could have a profound impact on a lot of different fields,” says Elizabeth Clare at York University in Toronto.

Looking at which aquatic animals are present by searching for so-called environmental DNA, or eDNA, …

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