Using ancient DNA to enhance museum collections: a case study of rare kiwi (Apteryx spp.) specimens
Six museum kiwi (Apteryx spp.) specimens of unknown or uncertain provenance were assigned to species using ancient DNA methods in conjunction with a reference database of modern and ancient kiwi DNA sequences. Four of the five species of kiwi exhibit a substantial overlap in bone morphology but can be identified with DNA sequences. The origin of one specimen, an articulated kiwi skeleton, was determined to be Stewart Island, a region that is currently poorly represented in museum collections. This study demonstrates that DNA analyses can add value to museum collections by determining species and provenance of specimens.
Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand
Ecology not elsewhere classified
Ecological Applications not elsewhere classified