Criminals who poach deer and other animals could be tracked through tiny samples of their DNA, researchers from the University of Strathclyde have revealed.

The university?s study, which is thought to be the first of its kind, extracted DNA from the legs of 10 culled deer. The limbs of deer are normally removed through manual force, so scientists believe they represent a potential source of so-called ?human touch? DNA. Two of the samples were good enough to identify to an accuracy of one in a billion people, and a further two yielded one in a million identification. The team is now refining the method in order to obtain better samples, thus providing a better chance of identification and conviction.

The rest of this article appears in the 21st September issue of Shooting Times.

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