Before the last election Trevor Mallard had a fantastic plan to resurrect the moa.
Of course he never told his leader about it and then stole all the headlines.
But it seems he wasn’t altogether wonky about at least trying.
It seems that there are 14 extinct species that could be cloned and brought back…the moa and Haast’s Eagle amongst them.
Imagine herds of mammoths roaming the open fields and saber-toothed cats prowling around your neighborhood. Science is on the brink of reviving a number of extinct animals – all that’s needed is a good sample of the animal’s DNA. The basic method of reproductive cloning that could bring animals back from extinction consists of taking DNA from the remains of the species you want to clone and inserting that DNA into a cell (preferably an egg) of a related living species. Then, until the day that artificial wombs can do the job, the best method is for the animal’s closest living relative to carry the baby to term.
While clones made this way do exist (the first successful one was Dolly the sheep in 1996) the science of cloning is still in its infancy, so don’t expect your local lab to start churning out saber-toothed cats right away. But if we’re willing to navigate the stumbling blocks inherent in patching back together extinct species, all of the animals on this roster could be up for de-extinction, since we have already accessed their DNA.
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