Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 18, Issue 14, pp 3825–3839 | Cite as

In the dark in a large urban park: DNA barcodes illuminate cryptic and introduced moth species

  • Jeremy R. deWaardEmail author
  • Jean-François Landry
  • B. Christian Schmidt
  • Jennifer Derhousoff
  • John A. McLean
  • Leland M. Humble
Original Paper


To facilitate future assessments of diversity following disturbance events, we conducted a first level inventory of nocturnal Lepidoptera in Stanley Park, Vancouver, Canada. To aid the considerable task, we employed high-throughput DNA barcoding for the rough sorting of all material and for tentative species identifications, where possible. We report the preliminary species list of 190, the detection of four new exotic species (Argyresthia pruniella, Dichelia histrionana, Paraswammerdamia lutarea, and Prays fraxinella), and the potential discovery of two cryptic species. We describe the magnitude of assistance that barcoding presents for faunal inventories, from reducing specialist time to facilitating the detection of native and exotic species at low density.


Biodiversity inventory COI Cryptic species Cytochrome oxidase 1 DNA barcodes Introduced species Invasive species Lepidoptera Stanley Park Taxonomic impediment 



Funding was provided by a Forest Investment Account—Forest Science Program Student Grant, an NSERC Graduate Scholarship, and an NSERC-RBCM Systematics Research Graduate Supplement (to JRD). Additional support was provided by the Canadian Barcode of Life Network from Genome Canada through the Ontario Genomics Institute, NSERC (to LMH), and other sponsors listed at Field collecting was supported by grants from the Canadian Food and Inspection Agency and Vancouver Parks and Recreation. We wish to thank Allison Shaver (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada) for slide preparation and photography, as well as the staff at the Canadian Centre for DNA Barcoding for their assistance with genetic analysis. We are also grateful to Claudia Copley (RBCM), Karen Needham (UBCZ) and Jane Seed (PFCA) for assistance with specimen deposition, Jason Dombroskie and Lisa Lumley (University of Alberta) for assistance with the tortricid identifications, and two anonymous reviewers for useful comments.

Supplementary material

10531_2009_9682_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.3 mb)
(DOC 1,325 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeremy R. deWaard
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Jean-François Landry
    • 3
  • B. Christian Schmidt
    • 4
  • Jennifer Derhousoff
    • 1
  • John A. McLean
    • 1
  • Leland M. Humble
    • 1
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Forest Sciences, Forestry Sciences CentreUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Royal British Columbia Museum, EntomologyVictoriaCanada
  3. 3.Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and NematodesOttawaCanada
  4. 4.Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and NematodesOttawaCanada
  5. 5.Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Pacific Forestry CentreVictoriaCanada

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