Department of Evolutionary Genetics: Service

Besides general molecular services (e.g. species ID, paternity analysis), we also conduct analyses in wildlife forensics and offer a biobanking service for (EAZA) zoos.

Wildlife forensics

As an independent research institute with substantial knowledge and experience in indigenous and exotic wildlife, the Leibniz-IZW provides forensic services to assist national and international governmental agencies as well as non-governmental agencies in their efforts to fight illegal activities.

EAZA BioBank

Since the establishement of the EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) biobank in 2016 the IZW with its dept. Evolutionary Genetics has been one out of four biobanking hubs serving the European zoo community.

Further analytic services

We offer a broad spectrum of analyses for conservation relevant questions. Our preferred methods are sequencing of mitochondrial genes or genomes and genotyping of samples via microsatellite loci or single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs).

  • Analyses of parentages for many mammal species. Our analyses also include the characterization of relationships among individuals that go beyond parents-offspring relationships (please inquire for species, primates excluded).
  • Support in genetic monitoring of wildlife populations. This includes e.g. estimation of population size, estimation of gene flow between populations, identification of barriers to gene flow, genetic variability. If relevant data are available, we also offer to compare the genetic diversity of your target population with that of other populations (of the same species).
  • DNA-analyses (haplo- and genotyping) from non-invasively collected sample material (e.g. hair, faeces, urine), e.g. within population monitoring programs in order to determine species or individuals.
  • DNA-analyses from archived material (e.g. museum specimen) to determine species/subspecies and/or geographic origin (if geo-referenced material is available)

Professional training/education

In case you or your institution are/is interested in getting to know more about the methods (and their analytical pros and cons) we apply to perform the services mentioned above, please do not hesitate to contact us. Currently we are offering presentation on the following topics (usually 90 min, if requested they can also be shorter or more detailed/longer):

  • Modern wildlife conservation approaches using (population)genetics (Focus on Conservation)
  • DNA analysis: What methods are there? What methods is best suited for a particular question? What are the limits of these methods (what can be done and what cannot?) (Focus on Methods)
  • Introduction into wildlife forensics (in particular for agencies and institutions involved in wildlife conservation) (Focus on Forensics)
  • Special presentations on: evolution and phylogeography of felids, evolution and phylogeography of leporids, evolution and phylogeography of cervids (Focus on a particular family of mammals)
  • Teaching programming and statistics using the open source software R (R Data Berlin).


Please contact us directly if you seek more information on these services or want to make use of a service.

Constanze Wiechert
phone: +49 (0)30 5168 - 336