The dodo could be brought back from extinction by Jurassic Park-style scientists.
After years of failed attempts, researchers have now been able to map the gene sequence of the flightless bird.
Professor Beth Shapiro, from the University of California, Santa Cruz, said: “The dodo genome is entirely sequenced because we sequenced it.
“It’s not been published yet but it does exist and we’re working on it right now.”
Evolutionary scientists spent years trying to find dodo DNA that was in good enough condition.
A breakthrough came when they got a sample from a “fantastic specimen” in Denmark. But they have warned it may not be easy to turn it into a “living, breathing, actual animal”.
Prof Shapiro, 46, added: “The way we can do this is to clone it, the same approach that was used to create Dolly the Sheep.
“But we don’t know how to do that with birds because of the intricacies of their reproductive pathways.
“There are groups working on different approaches for doing that and I have little doubt that we are going to get there eventually.”
To stay up to date with all the latest news, make sure you sign up to one of our newsletters here.
The flightless 3ft tall dodo was wiped out in the 17th century, 100 years after it was discovered on the island of Mauritius.
It was hunted and eaten by cats, dogs and pigs that had been taken to the island by sailors exploring the Indian Ocean at the time.
Source: Read Full Article