Wildlife Forensics: Methods and Applications

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Tigersare hunted illegally for claws, bones, skins, whiskers, and virtually every part of their body which are used in TCM. According to a recent census by the WWF only tigers exist in the wild. Rhino are poached for horns and skin. In , it was estimated that there were approximately 65, black rhinos in Africa - but, by , there were only surviving in the wild, Intensive anti-poaching efforts there are now an estimated wild population of Elephants continue to be killed for their ivory.

Several techniques including poisoned arrows are used for killing elephants Wild animals as pets and for meat Development of Wildlife Forensic Laboratories Some of the basic tenets in forensic investigations involving human suspects and victims include: 1 processing and investigating crime scenes.

This distinct disadvantage when enforcing the law on violators could only be remedied through the establishment of a wildlife crime laboratory. Agents on these teams evaluate wildlife evidence with the central purpose of: 1 identifying the species or animal or plant from the evidence collected whether is the entire organism, parts or pieces or even products such as clothing, jewellery, or processed meats; and 2 determining the cause-of-death COD Sometimes, both the Biology and Chemistry Units are integrated into trace evidence assessments.

This work is often facilitated with optical and scanning electron microscopy of this and other evidentiary items.

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In addition, this section can provide toxicological methodologies to identify toxins or poisons useful in determining the manner of death Molecular technologies have great utility for wildlife forensics. Assigning geographic origins of trade products can also be achieved using molecular methods, a task that is often impossible using morphological traits alone.

Morphological traits 1 Animal Tracks To identify animal behavior, movement, Activity. Elk, deer Dog v. Teeth only 1 pair of canines if any ; all teeth behind canines are molars— some are tiny!

Wildlife Forensics: Methods and Applications | NHBS Academic & Professional Books

Eyes on the side,the animal hides. Horns Pronghorn Antelope only animal in the world with horns that are pronged and are shed like antlers Whitetail deer vs. Mule Deer Whitetail Deer antlers curved tines extend from main beam like teeth on a comb Mule deer Antlers branch off of main beam. Not curved Bighorn sheep Horns curving with spiral shape Mountain Goat Horns gently curving black in color no forking Medulla Type — focus on this trait lattice — deer family uniserial or multiserial - rabbits vacuolated — dog,fox family amorphous - humans Medulla Pattern fragmented intermittent continuous absent The successful recovery of DNA from biological evidence is the most important stage in any forensic genetic investigation.

The diversity of DNA sources available to human forensic scientists has been well publicized and includes soft body tissues, bones, teeth, hair, saliva, sweat, urine and faeces. The methods used to extract DNA from these sample types can often be transferred to other species; However, wildlife forensic geneticists may be faced with quite different sample types such as fish scales, feathers, fruits or processed timber.


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Sample types can be characterized in terms of the quantity of DNA initially present, its protection from environmental degradation and the ease with which purified DNA can be recovered. For example, hard materials such as bone, tooth, horn and ivory may contain Relatively Little DNA, Which Is difficult to extract, but which is preserved in the sample for many years Yang et al.

Solving Crimes Against Animals With Forensic Experts

In contrast, soft tissues tend to contain more DNA which is simple to recover, but which is prone to rapid decomposition. Plant tissues also vary widely in composition, and different techniques need to be used when dealing with root fibres, leaves, fruit and seeds or solid timber. Problems associated with DNA recovery from wildlife samples: environmental degradation due to bacterial breakdown, physical destruction, damage from natural UV light lindahl Very low quantities of cellular material may limit analysis to mitochondrial or chloroplast DNA.

Degraded DNA will fragment, restricting analysis to small target sequences. The implications for wildlife crime investigations are that there is a higher success rate for techniques that rely on mitochondrial markers, such as species identification, and techniques that target short fragments of DNA, such as SNP genotyping.

The DNA-based methods used in wildlife crime investigations were adapted from those used in human identification and In the case of species identification, from taxonomic and phylogenetic studies. Mitochondrial DNA typing has become a standard process in species testing, allowing inter-laboratory comparison and permitting a means to standardize methodologies. Mitochondria Mt DNA If you include welded your open-source favor critically add us and we will complete your times.

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    Mitochondrial 16S ribosomal RNA gene for forensic identification of crocodile species. J Forensic Leg Med ; Wildlife Forensics using mitochondrial DNA sequences: species identification based on hairs collected in the field and confiscated tanned feidae leathers. Genes Genomics ; Conserv Genet Resour ; DNA-based identification of a snake in a wine bottle using universal primers: A case of mistaken identity. Forensic Sci Int ;e DNA mini-barcoding: An approach for forensic identification of some endangered Indian snake species.

    Feather barbs as a good source of mtDNA for bird species identification in forensic wildlife investigations. Investig Genet ; DNA profiling of shahtoosh. Electrophoresis ; Guha S, Kashyap VK. Development of novel heminested PCR assays based on mitochondrial 16s rRNA gene for identification of seven pecora species. BMC Genet ; A novel microsatellite STR marker for forensic identification of big cats in India. Application of molecular markers in wildlife DNA forensic investigations. J Forensic Sci Med ; Figure 1: Illegal use of Animal and their body products, a Group of elephants.

    Sources of images are listed in references [29] Click here to view. Sources of images are listed in references [30] Click here to view. Identification Using Mitochondrial Marker.