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Tingting Sun, Lei Wang, Jianmin Zhao, Zhijun Dong. Application of DNA metabarcoding to characterize the diet of the moon jellyfish Aurelia coerulea polyps and ephyrae[J]. Acta Oceanologica Sinica. doi: 10.1007/s13131-021-1800-8
Citation: Tingting Sun, Lei Wang, Jianmin Zhao, Zhijun Dong. Application of DNA metabarcoding to characterize the diet of the moon jellyfish Aurelia coerulea polyps and ephyrae[J]. Acta Oceanologica Sinica. doi: 10.1007/s13131-021-1800-8

Application of DNA metabarcoding to characterize the diet of the moon jellyfish Aurelia coerulea polyps and ephyrae

doi: 10.1007/s13131-021-1800-8
Funds:  The National Key Research and Development Program of China under contract No. 2018YFC1406501; the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences under contract No. XDA23050301; the National Natural Science Foundation of China under contract No. 41876138; the Instrument Developing Project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences under contract No. YJKYYQ20180047; the Key Research and Development Program of Yantai under contract No. 2018ZHGY073.
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  • Corresponding author: Email: zjdong@yic.ac.cn
  • Received Date: 2020-03-16
  • Accepted Date: 2020-11-25
  • Available Online: 2021-06-17
  • Dietary studies of polyps and ephyrae are important to understand the formation and magnitude of jellyfish blooms and provide important insights into the marine food web. However, the diet of polyps and ephyrae in situ is largely unknown. Here, prey species of the polyps and ephyrae of the moon jellyfish Aurelia coerulea in situ were identified using high-throughput DNA sequencing techniques. The results show that A. coerulea polyps and ephyrae consume a variety of prey items. The polyps consume both planktonic and benthic prey, including hydromedusae, copepods, ciliates, polychaetes, stauromedusae, and phytoplankton. A. coerulea ephyrae mainly feed on copepods and hydromedusae. Gelatinous zooplankton, including Rathkea octopunctata and Sarsia tubulosa, were frequently found as part of the diet of A. coerulea polyps and ephyrae. The utilization of high-throughput sequencing technique is a useful tool for studying the diet of polyps and ephyrae in the field, complementing the traditional techniques towards a better understanding of the complex role of gelatinous animals in marine ecosystems.
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