[en] Bifidobacteria are normal intestinal flora in humans and animals. The genus Bifidobacterium includes 31 species of significant host specificity. Taking into account their properties, we proposed to use bifidobacteria as fecal contamination indicators. PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism on the 16S rDNA gene was used to distinguish the different Bifidobacterium species. Sixty-four strains belonging to 13 different species were differentiated from animal or human origin using one or two restriction enzymes. Moreover, the primers used were specifics of the Bifidobacterium genus. Therefore, this method made it possible to determine both the presence of bifidobacteria in a sample and its origin of contamination.