An overlooked DNA source for non-invasive genetic analysis in birds

Márton B. Horváth, Begoña Martínez-Cruz, Juan J. Negro, Lajos Kalmár, José A. Godoy

Research output: Article

139 Citations (Scopus)


Non-invasive sampling is a useful tool for genetic analyses of endangered and/or elusive species, but it is often inapplicable due to the low quality and quantity of the DNA obtained. In this study we show that the blood clot located in the superior umbilicus of the feather shaft is a better source of DNA than the previously used tip samples from moulted feathers. We found that feather clots from museum specimens provided results nearly as good as footpad and better than those from the more commonly used museum skin snips. Feather clots proved to be a good source of DNA for genetic analysis that will significantly facilitate genetic monitoring of wild bird populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-88
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Avian Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - jan. 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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