Avian DNA Sexing

DNA sexing is the best method for determining the sex of avian monomorphic species for bird owners/veterinarians as it is accurate, efficient, time-saving and economical. Sex in bird is assigned genetically. Female birds are the heterogametic sex and possess ZW sex chromosomes while the male birds possess ZZ. The PCR test is designed for a specific DNA region on these chromosomes. Since the females possess the two different sex chromosomes, the PCR product will result in two bands, one from each sex chromosome. The male birds on the other hand will have only one band.

Avian breeders and owners can access the superior technology and reliability for their Bird Sexing needs. Testing can be performed using either a single drop of blood or 4-5 freshly plucked feather samples.

Gender Determination (bird sexing) is a non-surgical tool used by veterinarians, breeders, and bird owners who otherwise cannot determine the gender of their bird by its physical appearance or characteristics.




Sample Collection:

Avian DNA Samples can be submitted in one of 3 ways: feather, blood or egg shell.

Feather Sample:

  • Preferably select medium size feathers for plucking. The feather must be physically plucked (mooted feathers cannot be used).
  • Pluck 4-6 medium sized feathers from the chest area and place them in a clean zip-loked bag. Ensure the feather tip, which is attached to the skin, is present. Some feathers may contain some blood, should be left on the feather.
  • Place feathers from one bird per zip-lock bag. Write the bird's identification number with a permanent marker directly on the bag. Alternatively, place a piece of paper with the bird's name, species, identification number, your name and contact details in the bag. 

Blood Sample:

  • Contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 9295 6816 to arrange for a blood sample collection card
  • Write the bird's ID, species, your name and contact details on the card provided at Goodwill Birds.
  • Since the toenail is the easiest location to collect blood, wipe the bird's nail with an alcohol swab and let dry for 5-10 seconds.
  • Clip the nail short enough to allow bleeding (avoid clipping too high to avoid discomfort for the bird). If blood is not present, gently squeeze the toe until blood appears. Ensure the toenail clipper is thoroughly cleaned with alcohol between birds.
  • Allow a small amount of blood to bead up and carefully touch the area of the card (only 1 or 2 drops are required). Sample only 1 bird per card. 
  • Leave the card to air dry for approximately 20 minutes. Once the card is dry, place it into a zip-lock bag (1 card per bag).

Eggshell Sample:

  • Once the chick has hatched from the egg, carefully place the shells to aside and mark which shell belongs with which chick. Try not to touch the material inside the shell.
  • Allow the egg shell membrane to dry completely. Shells can be left in the incubator or air dried (24 hours) until the egg membrane is no longer moist.
  • Once the eggshell membrane is completely dry, place the entire egg shell in a zip-lock bag. Eggshells do not need to be in one piece and can be broken.
  • Write clearly with a permanent marker on the zip-lock bag with the bird's species, your name and contact details.

Submission:

  • Clearly label each bag to identify the sample. 
  • Call us at 9295 6816 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to arrange for sample submission. We are happy to render assistance in plucking of feathers or blood collection if required. Additional charges for transport may apply.
  • Results will be sent out within 7 working days, OR you may choose to receive results in electronic format.
  • Payment is to be made at the time of submission of samples.

** Disclaimer: Goodwill Birds Trading will not be responsible for any death, injury, loss or damage of any kind when assisting with sample collection.