Genetic markers and sample types for pedigree reconstruction in Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi)

Rob Ogden, Tanya Langenhorst*, Ross McEwing, Tim Woodfine

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Effective captive population management relies on maintaining accurate pedigree records in order to direct breeding programmes and maximise conservation of genetic diversity. Where familial relationships or individual identities are unknown, it is now possible to recover this information via genetic analysis. We describe the first application of DNA profiling to reconstruct family groups of the Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi), in order to identify three unknown stallions. To examine the potential for using non-invasive sampling techniques, DNA recovered from faeces, hair and blood was compared. Microsatellite loci derived from horses were tested for their utility in Grevy's zebra and a set of loci were subsequently employed to successfully identify the three animals via parental exclusion. The study demonstrates the relative ease with which DNA profiling can now be applied to captive management and highlights methods of genetic sampling that minimise stress to the animal and reduce sampling costs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-35
Number of pages7
JournalDer Zoologische Garten
Volume77
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

Keywords

  • Captive breeding
  • DNA
  • EEP
  • Grevy's zebra
  • Microsatellite
  • Non invasive sampling
  • Parentage identification

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