Leveraging eDNA to detect and monitor hybrid zones
- Subject Areas
- Biodiversity, Ecology, Evolutionary Studies, Genetics, Population Biology
- Hybridization, environmental DNA, eco-evolutionary frameworks, sampling resolution
- © 2019 Stewart et al.
- This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, reproduction and adaptation in any medium and for any purpose provided that it is properly attributed. For attribution, the original author(s), title, publication source (PeerJ Preprints) and either DOI or URL of the article must be cited.
- Cite this article
- 2019. Leveraging eDNA to detect and monitor hybrid zones. PeerJ Preprints 7:e27996v1 https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.27996v1
Hybrid zones are important windows into evolutionary processes and our understanding of their significance and prevalence in nature has expanded quickly. Yet most hybridization research has restricted temporal and spatial resolution, limiting our ability to draw broad conclusions about evolutionary and conservation related outcomes. Here, we argue rapidly advancing environmental DNA (eDNA) methodology should be adopted for studies of hybrid zones to increase temporal sampling (contemporary and historical), to refine and geographically expand sampling density, and to collect data for taxa that are difficult to directly sample. Genomic data in the environment offer the potential for near real-time biological tracking and eDNA provides broad, as yet untapped potential to address eco-evolutionary questions.
This perspective piece aims to highlight the possible of extension of environmental DNA (eDNA) into evolutionary frameworks, particularly research on hybrid zones.