Project Laysan Duck is a BWA initiative for 2019, to investigate the genetic purity of captive populations of the Laysan Duck over the 2019 breeding season. The aim of the study is to provide a reference work, accessible to all, that covers the biometrics of the species at all ages and plumages. The document will cover an established control from stock of known purity and will also include notes on recommended husbandry.
By DNA feather sampling from as many collections as we can, we aim to build a picture of what the current situation is. It is a simple process that is easily done by any keeper following a set of basic guidelines and we can help if there is a lack of confidence for taking the sample. The results are anonymised but the donor will be advised of the findings for their personal use. Our key aim is to raise awareness, certainly not to try and control what breeding goes on. What we would advocate however, is that identified hybrids are not sold on as pure.
Proper record keeping is something we can all do with ease now. Knowing your bloodlines and heritage is very much a transferrable skill to all breeds and species. We do it every time we choose our breeding stock.
Do you have Laysan Ducks? Would you like to be on board with this exciting new project, or even just keep up to date with its progress?