Buccal swabs as a reliable source of DNA for sexing young and adult Common Swifts (Apus apus)

Arndt H. J. Wellbrock, Christina Bauch, Jan Rozman, Klaudia Witte

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13 Citations (Scopus)


We investigated the reliability of buccal swabs for molecular sex determination in very young nestlings (0–14 days old) and adults of the Common Swift (Apus apus) compared to the results from blood samples of the same individuals. Sex determination based on buccal swabs matched the result of sex determination based on blood samples in 46 out of 47 nestlings (98 %) and in all 10 adults (100 %). Therefore, we consider that buccal swab sampling is a reliable noninvasive method to obtain DNA for sex determination in swifts. We recommend buccal swabbing as an alternative to blood sampling in future genetic studies in birds.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)991-994
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Ornithology
Issue number3
Early online date24-Apr-2012
Publication statusPublished - 1-Jul-2012
Externally publishedYes


  • noninvasive sampling
  • sex determination
  • nonpasserine bird
  • chelex

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