Avian DNA Sexing

Only €21 per bird with results in 3-5 days

Identifying a bird’s gender is difficult, especially if the species is not sexually dimorphic. Unlike mammals, birds don’t usually possess physical characteristics that distinguish male from female. If they do, the traits are subtle or unnoticeable.

To remove the guesswork from doing so, the best method to determine a bird’s gender is through a DNA test.

We offer Avian DNA Sexing as a definitive way to determine your bird’s gender. Starting at only €21 per bird, this test helps breeders and owners accurately establish the gender of their birds.

This testing service tests a minimum of five birds using blood or feather samples. Kindly state the bird breed you desire to test, as we cannot test all bird breeds known.

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Why Discover the Gender of Your Birds

Why is it important to determine your birds’ gender? Here are some reasons to consider:

  • Medical Conditions: Some avian diseases are gender specific and can only affect either males or females. Thus, knowledge of the gender of a sick bird helps the veterinarian accurately diagnose its condition. Knowing the bird’s gender in advance will help save valuable time and hasten treatment.
  • Behavioural Issues: It is common for growing birds’ temperaments to change, but certain genders of certain bird species might develop problematic behaviours. Knowing your birds’ gender is, then, crucial to understanding the root cause of these behaviours.
  • Mating: If you are a bird breeder, it is crucial to know your birds’ gender. Oftentimes, people buy bird pairs and wonder why they fail to produce offspring. In most cases, these inexperienced breeders have unknowingly copulated birds of the same sex.

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How Avian DNA Sexing Works

The Avian DNA Sexing Test relies on DNA analysis to differentiate bird genders. The process of analysis and replication, known as Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), has a high accuracy rate of 99.9%.

The process allows for the amplification of a region on the Z and W chromosomes that vary in size, resulting in an unambiguous reading of a bird’s sex.

Clients ordering this test will receive their sample collection kits and instructions via email after purchase. If you don’t have access to a printer, contact us for a quote for sending your kit by post.

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How to Collect Samples

Samples for Avian DNA Sexing can be collected through blood samples or feather samples.

Blood sample collection is done by clipping the bird’s nail at a very specific point. This area needs to be disinfected before clipping the nail. After clipping the nail, squeeze the part to produce a few blood drops. Collect these blood drops on a special card and send it to our laboratory for testing.

For feather sample collection, you need to choose medium-sized feathers from the bird’s chest area. Do not use large feathers or naturally shed feathers, which may not yield any DNA. Pluck the feathers and place them in a clean, unused zip lock bag.

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Understanding Bird Chromosomes

The avian DNA test is based on the analysis of bird chromosomes. Mammal chromosomes are composed of XX or XY chromosome pairs, but bird chromosomes are composed of ZZ and ZW pairs.

In mammals, the Y chromosome, which is carried by males, is the sex-determined chromosome. This means that if an offspring inherits the Y chromosome from their father, they will be male. If they inherited their father’s X chromosome, they will be female.

However, in birds, sex is determined by the female, not the male. Female birds carry ZW pairs, and the Z chromosome determines if the offspring will be male. If the offspring does not inherit the Z chromosome from their mother, then they will be female.

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Other Animal DNA Tests from AffinityDNA

AffinityDNA offers an entire line of Animal DNA Tests, which can assess your pets’ health or genetic lineage. Some of these services include our DogCheck Genetic Disease Test, Cat Intolerance Test, and Horse Intolerance Test.