Have you ever wondered about where reindeer came from. Well -DNA is pretty amazing, and can tell us a lot about a species. Reindeer are cousins to cows and sheep, but their closest relations are deer. We already know that reindeer are pretty unique, especially at Christmas, but they are also the only species of deer to live all over the world. They live in arctic and subarctic regions, as well as throughout areas of Europe, North America and Asia! They are also the only deer who have been fully domesticated – possibly even as far back as 3000 BC according to cave paintings and other archaeological finds! By comparing DNA, we know that cows, goats and reindeer shared a common ancestor around 29 million years ago. It is around 100 million years ago, when dinosaurs were still around that they shared a common ancestor with humans.
GCSE scientists – you need to be able to explain the structure of DNA. For help, try our new guide “How to work with DNA”. It includes a description of its structure. In addition there is information on how to extract it from fruit. As always there are questions to try, and answers to check your understanding.
Click on the picture below to see the guide.
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