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All chickens descend from south east Asia

New DNA research has revealed that all chickens descend from a few common ancestors who lived in South East Asia.

Project researcher Dr Alison Storey says chickens have been domesticated for at least 5400 years and it has been difficult to determine the ancient origin and dispersal of chickens because of the way successive civilisations carried the domesticated poultry with them wherever they went.

“What we found is that one of the sequences in the different chicken bones was very similar over a wide geographic area. This tells us that the chickens that we found in archaeological sites all over the world shared an ancient ancestor who was domesticated somewhere in southeast Asia a long time ago,” Dr Storey told the ABC.

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Story: Anneli Knight, The Telegraph | Photo: ALAMY

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