Genetic differences between a collection of aeromonads were studied in two laboratories by analysis of randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). A single randomly designed primer, generated reproducible profiles of genomic DNA in both laboratories for Aeromonas salmonicida subspecies salmonicida, although the profiles differed between laboratories. Analysis of atypical strains of A. salmonicida and isolates of the A. hydrophila group produced scattered profiles in both laboratories. The uniform fingerprints produced for A. salmonicida subspecies salmonicida indicate genomic homogeneity. The scattered RAPD profiles of the motile aeromonads demonstrate the genomic diversity of this group. A group of unspeciated motile aeromonads gave uniform fingerprints, suggesting the possibility of a genomically homogeneous species. Although the RAPD technique is susceptible to the effects of minor technical variations, this study has demonstrated that where there is DNA similarity, it can be recognized, and where there is diversity, differentiation can be made. RAPD promises to be useful in epidemiological studies for rapid identification of bacteria where a source of reference DNA is available and may be useful in preliminary investigations of relatedness within groups.