Anomalies in DNA information

+4 votes
I have just received my DNA profile back from Ancestry. There is one anomaly that I wanted to mention before I look any further; somebody who is ostensibly a 2nd cousin shows up as 3rd-4th cousin. There is no one else even remotely related to either of us to treat as a control. Is this result within accepted parameters, or to put it politely, was my great grandmother playing an away fixture at the time!?
in Genealogy Help by Derek Allen G2G6 Mach 1 (17.9k points)

Hi Derek, I suggest that you change your privacy setting to show your family tree with one of the options below.  That way your information will be visible and make it easier for others to advise you.  Also, consult your list of Surnames to see all your autosomal DNA possible surnames.

Private with Public Tree Private with Public Family Tree
Same as Private but anyone can view the family tree. Other individuals in the tree can still be private.
Private with Public Bio and Family Tree Private with Public Biography and Family Tree
Same as Private but anyone can view the biography and family tree.

1 Answer

+4 votes
Ancestry has no way of knowing your exact relationship to your matches. The categories that Ancestry gives eg. "3rd-4th cousin" are just estimates given according to the amount of DNA you share with that match. If you click on the statement showing how much DNA you share with that match eg. "Shared DNA: 95 cM across 5 segments" it will show you a list of possible relationships to that match.
by Samantha Thomson G2G6 Pilot (176k points)
Thanks for that. When I click on that link it shows a 55% possibility of being a 2nd cousin which makes it odd that Ancestry have put it under the heading of 3rd to 4th cousins.

I have 208 cM & 11 segments that is a half first cousin once removed (1/2-1c1xr) that is labelled a 2nd-3rd range. They have no way of knowing the more distant relationships, so they give a conservative range:


2nd cousin

1st cousin 2x removed

Half 1st cousin 1x removed

Half 2nd great-aunt/uncle

Half 2nd great-niece/nephew

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