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Fauna Identification and Analysis

Fauna identification and analysis involves identifying a species of wildlife, wildlife part, or wildlife product based on its physical characteristics. For example, species of smuggled birds (whether dead or alive) can be identified through their morphology; species of sharks may be identified just by looking at the shape and colour of the fins alone; and a piece of ornament can be determined to be a product made of elephant ivory based on the presence of Schreger lines.


Fauna identification is especially important because it allows for a quick first-cut identification of a specimen, which helps inform decision making processes, such as whether the wildlife, wildlife part or wildlife product is illegal and needs to be seized.

At the Centre for Wildlife Forensics, we are committed to the development of identification guides, investigation protocols, and diagnostic toolkits for investigations.

For more information on key endangered species, as well as the tools available to help identify them, please refer to pages below:


Last updated on 12 August 2020

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