Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Environmental DNA captures native and non-native fish community variations across the lentic and lotic systems of a megacity.

Abstract

Globally, urbanization poses a major threat to terrestrial biodiversity, yet its impact on fish diversity is poorly understood, mainly because of surveying difficulties. In this study, environmental DNA metabarcoding was used to survey fish communities at 109 lentic and lotic sites across Beijing, and how environmental variables affect fish biodiversity at fine urban spatial scales was investigated. We identified 52 native and 23 non-native taxa, with lentic and lotic waters harboring both common and habitat-specific species. Water quality strongly affected native fish diversity, especially in lentic systems, but had little influence on non-native diversity. Fish diversity showed little response to urban land cover variation, but the relative sequence abundance of non-natives in lotic waters increased linearly with distance from the city center. Our findings illustrate the complex effects of urbanization on native versus non-native fishes in different aquatic habitats and highlight the distinctive considerations needed to conserve urban aquatic biodiversity.