HANK MORGAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY HANK MORGAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
DNA fingerprint map showing kinship between birds of the California condor, Gymnogyps californianus. This rare and endangered species of bird is on the verge of extinction, with less than 100 condors surviving in 1993. Here, an autoradiograph (X-ray) sheet contains vertical banded lines of DNA, each line belonging to a different condor. Each bird has a unique DNA fingerprint, but some DNA bands are shared by related birds. Using this technique, family relationships among surviving condors can be established for breeding and management of the species. This research is being conducted at the Center for Reproduction of Endangered Species at San Diego Zoo in California, USA.
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