Monday, April 8, 2019

DNA Plus Trees Equals Cousin Bait

MyHeritage profile is temporarily empty, soon to be filled!
This week's #52Ancestors prompt is DNA. For years, my main genealogy site has been Ancestry, in part because of the size of its DNA base and because my multiple, ever-growing family trees are all housed there. Thousands of ancestors, counting his and her trees, some with thousands of hints to be examined.

My DNA and hubby's DNA also appear on Gedmatch, because of the tools available for analysis and because we can fish for matches among all people using that site, regardless of where they originally tested.

I created a basic tree for him and for me on Gedmatch, and also listed major surnames so people browsing matches can quickly see how we might match, as cousin bait.

New Site for DNA Cousin Bait

Now I admit, I'm often frustrated by how many Ancestry DNA matches have no family tree, or only a few names, or a private tree only.

So now that I just subscribed to MyHeritage, to more intensively research my husband's British, Irish, and Scottish ancestry, I'm transferring my DNA and hubby's DNA there too.

With the new site, I need to complete my profile (sadly empty, as shown above) and plant my family trees as cousin bait. I began with a photo and basics...

More Hints Too

Since I sync my Ancestry trees with my RootsMagic 7 software, I will be able to upload an updated Gedcom tree for myself and my hubby onto MyHeritage with little effort. Thanks to the RootsMagic Users group on Facebook, I learned how to export a Gedcom with living people marked as private.

Now I can take advantage of both Ancestry and MyHeritage hints through RootsMagic, as shown here.

Make it easy for DNA matches to see the family tree(s), and we just might get better answers to our notes or possibly hear from matches who take the initiative to reach out to us! Cousin bait.


  1. I'm not as intentional with my DNA results as I should be. I too am frustrated with the number of people who take the DNA test but post NO tree. Even more frustrating are the ones who won't respond to email. Why did they bother?

  2. I usually think of my website/blog as "cousin bait," but you have a great point that the sites where we are including our DNA - IF we include more information - can also be cousin bait!

    As far as those with no tree or who aren't responding, there are many reasons. Many are adoptees and don't know anyone on their biological tree! And, many just took the test to find their ethnicity or admixture. Some don't even realize they have a mail box. I suggest reaching out, and then working around those who don't have trees or don't respond. Maybe they will, some day!

  3. Thanks for reading and commenting, ladies. And Dana, I entirely agree with you about how some folks who test don't realize that cousins may be looking to connect. Sometimes I wait a few months and send a second message as if I'd never tried earlier.