Environmental DNA sampling on the Pyrenees
Research on the Pyrenees mountain range – stretching from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean coasts and marking the division between France and Spain – will explore the restoration of degraded slopes. The EU-funded ECO-MOUNTAIN project will study how mountains are threatened by shallow landslides and water erosion. It will develop a sediment source fingerprinting method using the emerging technique of environmental DNA (eDNA). As strong interrelations exist between vegetation, soils and geomorphology, plants leave an eDNA signature on sediments that reflects the degradation status of the area. This will allow researchers to precisely define erosion hotspots and monitor the impact of ecological restoration schemes in large catchments.
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