Suction sampling as a significant source of error in molecular analysis of predator diets

Article English OPEN
King, Robert Andrew ; Davey, Jeffrey ; Bell, J. R. ; Read, D. S. ; Bohan, D. A. ; Symondson, William Oliver Christian (2012)
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1017/S0007485311000575
  • Subject: QR | QL
    mesheuropmc: nutritional and metabolic diseases

The molecular detection of predation is a fast growing field, allowing highly specific and sensitive detection of prey DNA within the gut contents or faeces of a predator. Like all molecular methods, this technique is prone to potential sources of error that can result in both false positive and false negative results. Here, we test the hypothesis that the use of suction samplers to collect predators from the field for later molecular analysis of predation will lead to high numbers of false positive results. We show that, contrary to previous published work, the use of suction samplers resulted in previously starved predators testing positive for aphid and collembolan DNA, either as a results of ectopic contamination or active predation in the collecting cup/bag. The contradictory evidence for false positive results, across different sampling protocols, sampling devices and different predator-prey systems, highlights the need for experimentation prior to mass field collections of predators to find techniques that minimise the risk of false positives.
  • References (29)
    29 references, page 1 of 3

    Bell, J.R., Wheater, C.P., Henderson, R. & Cullen, W.R. (2002) Testing the efficiency of suction samplers (G-vacs) on spiders. The effects of increasing nozzle size and suction time. pp. 285-290 in Toft, S. & Scharff, N. (Eds) European Arachnology 2000. Ã…rhus, Denmark, Aarhus University Press.

    Bell, J.R., King, R.A., Bohan, D.A. & Symondson, W.O.C. (2010) Spatial co-occurrence networks coupled with molecular analysis of trophic links reveal the spatial dynamics and feeding histories of polyphagous predators. Ecography 33, 64-72.

    Chapman, E.G., Romero, S.A. & Harwood, J.D. (2010) Maximizing collection and minimizing risk: does vacuum suction sampling increase the likelihood for misinterpretation of food web connections? Molecular Ecology Resources 10, 1023-1033.

    Chen, Y., Giles, K.L., Payton, M.E. & Greenstone, M.H. (2000) Identifying key cereal aphid predators by molecular gut analysis. Molecular Ecology 9, 1887-1898.

    Davey, J.S. (2010) Intraguild predation among generalist predators in winter wheat. PhD thesis, University of Cardiff, Cardiff, UK.

    Folmer, O., Black, M., Hoeh, W., Lutz, R. & Vrijenhoek, R. (1994) DNA primers for the amplification of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I from diverse metazoan invertebrates. Molecular Marine Biology and Biotechnology 3, 294-299.

    Foltan, P., Sheppard, S., Konvicka, M. & Symondson, W.O.C. (2005) The significance of facultative scavenging in generalist predator nutrition: detecting decayed prey in the guts of predators using PCR. Molecular Ecology 14, 4147-4158.

    Greenstone, M.H., Weber, D.C., Coudron, T.C. & Payton, M.E. (2011) Unnecessary roughness? Testing the hypothesis that predators destined for molecular gut-content analysis must be hand-collected to avoid cross-contamination. Molecular Ecology Resources 11, 286-293.

    Harwood, J.D. (2008) Are sweep net sampling and pitfall trapping compatible with molecular analysis of predation? Environmental Entomology 37, 990-995.

    Hebert, L., Darden, S.K., Pedersen, B.V. & Dabelsteen, T. (2011) Increased DNA amplification success of non-invasive genetic samples by successful removal of inhibitors from faecal samples collected in the field. Conservation Genetics Resources 3, 41-43.

  • Metrics
    views in OpenAIRE
    views in local repository
    downloads in local repository

    The information is available from the following content providers:

    From Number Of Views Number Of Downloads
    Online Research @ Cardiff - IRUS-UK 0 74
Share - Bookmark