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Updated Ethnicity Results On Ancestry

Discussion in 'DNA Questions and Answers' started by FamilyHistoryGal, Jun 14, 2018.

  1. FamilyHistoryGal

    FamilyHistoryGal LostCousins Member

    So, have you checked your ethnicity results on Ancestry lately? My results have altered radically and are now more in line with what Living DNA told me.

    Updated Screenshot for Ancestry Lynn's DNA.jpg
     
    • Useful Useful x 2
  2. CarolB08

    CarolB08 LostCousins Member

    I have not got mine yet but I am interested in finding out what they are.
     
  3. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Yes, looks much better now.
     
  4. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    Mine make a lot more sense now, but on the other hand they asked me a series of questions before showing me the estimates, so they could just be respondng to my answers.....

    And the area they call England & Wales still seems to include northern France, Belgium, Holland, and part of Germany.
     
  5. CarolB08

    CarolB08 LostCousins Member

    O my God I just got my DNA results and the ethnicity results are amazing :eek: given that I know my Father is from Poland or Ukraine or that area and my Mother from England and maybe a splash of Ireland these are pretty acurate. Although I would have expected a tad more England % :D AncestryDNAStory-Carol-150618.png
     
  6. SarahLC

    SarahLC Genealogy in the Sunshine 2015

    Mine flipped from 76% Europe West and only 3% England and Wales to 2% "Germanic Europe" and 64% England and Wales. Quite a difference! Ireland and Scotland went from 11% to 27% and Scandinavia became Sweden, keeping nearly the same percentage (8 vs 7.) It is certainly more in line with what I know of my ancestry - I couldn't imagine where all that "Europe West" was coming from!

    For reference, Living DNA has me at 95.8% Great Britain and Ireland and 1.8% Scandinavia

    I suspect that all the back and forth between England and the Low Countries throughout history has made it difficult to separate them. My Belgian husband, whose known ancestry includes Belgium, Holland and France, shows 51% British Isles at Family Tree DNA (he has not done the Ancestry test, nor Living DNA, so I can't compare.)
     
  7. HeyerFan

    HeyerFan New Member

    Mine have not changed at all - still on the reference panel of 3,000 (Nov 2017) rather than 16,000.
     
  8. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Mine are pretty good
     
  9. PhilGee

    PhilGee LostCousins Member

    The update is definitely more in keeping with my research (could that be a clue?), with 88% England/Wales, 8% Ireland/Scotland and 2% each Norway/Sweden - though I haven't found the 12% links yet :rolleyes: Previously, it was 23% Scandinavia, 22% England/Wales and 18% Ireland/Scotland.

    So far my starting points are in Somerset/Devon, the Glamorgan/Carmarthenshire border, Wiltshire (plus a few from its borders with Berkshire/Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire) and Leicestershire/Northamptonshire. Quite restricted, really.

    A possible Ireland/Scotland link is through my mother's paternal line (Fox) which "starts" with a 1757 baptism in Shepton Mallet, where the father's occupation is "A soldier in WOLFs Regiment" - this being the time of the Frome Riots when a detachment "passed through" on the way to France.

    Phil
     
  10. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    The original estimates were based on the likely whereabouts of ancestors 1000 to 2000 years ago. It's not clear what the timescale is for the new estimates, but it may be hidden in the small print somewhere.
     
  11. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Member

    Mine and those of my brothers seem to have aligned much better on the new assessment (although both my brothers still have a slightly random "Sweden" portion that doesn't show up on either of our parents... strange!)

    But for each of us (mother, father, myself & two brothers), the estimate has narrowed from 5-6 possible regions - with some variation; to approximately three (my mother's to 2): England & Wales and Ireland & Scotland - the two we all share, and for my father's side: European Jewish, the "catchment" area of which has grown - where originally it seemed to take in a good half of Russia, and end somewhere in Germany, now takes in most of Europe - from the Balkan states, the lower half of Sweden, a good portion of the British Isles and all the way down to Spain.

    It seems to better match what I know about my ancestry, even more than it used to - for example, I have yet to find any of my mother's ancestors outside of the UK, so her having only 2 regions on the results seems to match better than when they gave her a whole heap of results on the continent. Then with the "migrations", it matches even more - my mother's is Wales & the West Midlands, which is pretty spot on.

    But my most recent set of results, those of my grandmother, which I have only had for approximately a month, have yet to show the new update - I am very interested in it, although I'm fairly sure I know what her ancestry is. Perhaps they're slowly working through their large database and rewarding those who have had their results for a while??
     
  12. Kate

    Kate LostCousins Member

    Mine seemed reasonable originally, but fit in even better with my research now.
     
  13. pjd

    pjd LostCousins Member

    The new assessment is certainly a more accurate representation of my research i.e. 100% England & Wales largely Northern England & Midlands
     
  14. FamilyHistoryGal

    FamilyHistoryGal LostCousins Member

    I really can't see the point in knowing where you sprung from 1000 - 2000 years ago. Most people (I think) are trying to confirm their paper research and perhaps to keep an open mind to ancestors they have yet to trace. I think this is why I found Living DNAs results more helpeful and informative. Especially because Living DNA breaks the results down into regions. Plus Living DNA don't have access to your tree; so there is no possibility they could even cheat! ;) (light-hearted comment)!
     
  15. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    You might if you lived in the New World and didn't know where your ancestors originated.

    But we don't know yet what time period Ancestry's new estimates relate to.
    Ancestry might cheat (in a sense). They do ask users to complete a short survey before viewing their revised results, and when I click Preview an updated estimate the message Checking survey responses appears briefly before the updated results are displayed.
     
  16. FamilyHistoryGal

    FamilyHistoryGal LostCousins Member

    If I lived in the New World and suspected I had ancestors from Great Britain I think I would still opt for Living DNA's test for the regional results and then (if like me I could afford it) go with Ancestry to get cousin matches. I believe Living DNA will give cousin matches soon. I'm not surprised Ancestry made us fill in a questionaire. They must have realised their earlier ethnicity results were a great disappointment to many people. To be told you're Irish when you haven't got one Irish person on your tree (!) or to be told that 1000 years ago you might have come from Europe (not exactly rivetting information).
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018 at 12:49 PM
  17. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    You wouldn't have expected Ancestry's original estimates to be accurate if you had known they had just 3000 sets of results in their reference panel to cover the entire world. Even 16000 is a small number - they admit they still need more in some countries.

    Testing with Living DNA is an expensive way of finding out where your ancestors might have come from. Yes, they give a much more detailed breakdown for the British Isles as a whole, and especially for England, but they didn't pick up my German ancestry (around 6% of the total), whilst they show me as having 11.6% from Yorkshire even though none of the ancestors I've traced so far are further north than Suffolk.

    In practice the c15,000 matches at Ancestry will provide most of the answers - ethnicity estimates, from whatever site, are of relatively little use in comparison, UNLESS you live in the New World and don't know where your ancestors came from. That is when ethnicity estimates, which are much more accurate on a continental level, are most valuable.
     
  18. FamilyHistoryGal

    FamilyHistoryGal LostCousins Member

    I would never have taken a Living DNA test if I hadn't been so disappointed with my ethnicity results from Ancestry. But I agree with your comments re Ancestry not having a large enough test reference population. In hindsight I am pleased that Ancestry's first estimate was wide of the mark. It inspired me to get a second opinion with Living DNA and they picked up my East Anglian Ancestry (Father from Norfolk Maternal Great Grandparents from Suffolk). After Ancestry telling me I was Irish and European, Living DNA reporting that I had nearly 50% East Anglian Ancestry came as welcome relief! It coincided with my paper research. I think Ancestry's first results must have boosted sales for other DNA companies (it did for me anyway)! Some of us just want confirmation of what we already know to see if the company knows what they are talking about and by and large I have more confidence in Living DNA's ethnicity results purely because they got it right first time!
     
  19. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Member

    I will admit to being a little disappointed with my Living DNA results (other than the first debacle) they don't mention my Jewish Ancestry, but instead give me DNA links to Northern Italy, Greece and France, none of which I have found on my tree so far. My Jewish ancestors lived in Holland and Eastern Europe (not that I think they married outside of their own Jewish group anyway!)

    It is however nice to have a better breakdown of my English heritage, which is the reason I got a LivingDNA test to begin with, since my ancestors seemed to have a habit of moving within the British Isles before the emigration out to the colonies. (Living DNA gives me 11 regions within the British Isles, most of which seem reasonable given my own research so far.)
     
  20. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    That's the problem with ethnicity estimates, either they don't match what we think we know, so we don't believe them, or they simply confirm what we know, so it adds little or nothing to our knowledge.

    The situation should improve as they become more accurate.
     
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