Sampling error in non-invasive genetic analyses of an endangered social carnivore
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Modern non-invasive genetic technologies are useful in studies of rare and difficult-to-observe species. An examination of endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) faecal DNA revealed that 11.4% of samples were assigned incorrectly to an individual. Sampling mistakes in the field are not normally considered in non-invasive genetic assessments, but can be a significant source of error. To ensure meticulous data interpretation, non-invasive genetic studies should track and report sampling inaccuracies.
KeywordsLycaon pictus Non-invasive Microsatellites Sampling error Faecal sampling
This research was supported by Smithsonian Institution, University of Pretoria, Rotterdam Thandiza Fund, Humboldt State University, Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund, Knowsley Safari Park, DST-NRF Centre of Excellence for Invasion Biology, Pittsburgh Zoo and Morris Animal Foundation.
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