Scientific genetic approaches have made it easier to identify the cryptic species in particular taxa, and thereby have conservational significance. To achieve a positive result on conservation efforts, especially those linked to an individual species, an in-depth study of the taxonomy is mandatory (Mace 2004). However, since extracting taxonomical evidence based on morphological characteristics of birds has been a “taxonomic-headache” (Howell and Webb. 1995), a designed systematic molecular approach is a much better alternative.
Neotropical parrots belonging to the genus Amazona have been treasured for their capability to mimic human sounds and their beautiful plumage. However, most Amazona species parrots are under threat of extinction except Amazona farinosa, also known as the Mealy Amazon which is prevalent in parts of both Central and South America. Wenner et al conducted a study to evaluate and validate the taxonomy of A.farinosa species complex by employing analytical methods such as complementary analysis and multiple genetic loci. DNA sequence data from mitochondrial and nuclear introns were extracted from sources like frozen tissues, bone and toe pad extraction and were used to understand and analyse the relationship between the five sub-species of A.farinosa. In the mtDNA data set, 110 sites were variable while about 96 of the sites were parsimony informative. Unique haplotypes were identified and joined to estimate the percentage of relation between the haplotypes. Three distinct haplotypes clusters and a minimum of 11 mutational steps were recognised. Phylogenies constructed using maximum-likelihood (for both individual as well as concatenated gene regions) and Bayesian method showed the existence of two negatively monophyletic clades- Central American clade and South American clade.