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To better determine the history of modern birds, we performed a genome-scale phylogenetic analysis of 48 species representing all orders of Neoaves using phylogenomic methods created to handle genome-scale data. We recovered a highly resolved tree that confirms previously controversial sister or close relationships. We identified the first divergence in(More)
Although massively parallel sequencing has facilitated large-scale DNA sequencing, comparisons among distantly related species rely upon small portions of the genome that are easily aligned. Methods are needed to efficiently obtain comparable DNA fragments prior to massively parallel sequencing, particularly for biologists working with non-model organisms.(More)
The role of ecology in the origin of species has been the subject of long-standing interest to evolutionary biologists. New sources of spatially explicit ecological data allow for large-scale tests of whether speciation is associated with niche divergence or whether closely related species tend to be similar ecologically (niche conservatism). Because of the(More)
This is a time of unprecedented transition in DNA sequencing technologies. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) clearly holds promise for fast and cost-effective generation of multilocus sequence data for phylogeography and phylogenetics. However, the focus on non-model organisms, in addition to uncertainty about which sample preparation methods and analyses(More)
Pleistocene glacial cycles are thought to have played a major role in the diversification of temperate and boreal species of North American birds. Given that coalescence times between sister taxa typically range from 0.1 to 2.0 Myr, it has been assumed that diversification occurred as populations were isolated in refugia over long periods of time, probably(More)
To provide context for the diversification of archosaurs--the group that includes crocodilians, dinosaurs, and birds--we generated draft genomes of three crocodilians: Alligator mississippiensis (the American alligator), Crocodylus porosus (the saltwater crocodile), and Gavialis gangeticus (the Indian gharial). We observed an exceptionally slow rate of(More)
Evolutionary relationships among birds in Neoaves, the clade comprising the vast majority of avian diversity, have vexed systematists due to the ancient, rapid radiation of numerous lineages. We applied a new phylogenomic approach to resolve relationships in Neoaves using target enrichment (sequence capture) and high-throughput sequencing of ultraconserved(More)
Phylogenomics offers the potential to fully resolve the Tree of Life, but increasing genomic coverage also reveals conflicting evolutionary histories among genes, demanding new analytical strategies for elucidating a single history of life. Here, we outline a phylogenomic approach using a novel class of phylogenetic markers derived from ultraconserved(More)
The pine-oak woodlands of the Mexican highlands harbour significant biological diversity, yet little is known about the evolutionary history of organisms inhabiting this region. We assessed genetic and phenotypic differentiation in 482 individuals representing 27 populations of the Mexican jay (Aphelocoma ultramarina) - a widespread bird species of the(More)
The understanding that gene trees are often in discord with each other and with the species trees that contain them has led researchers to methods that incorporate the inherent stochasticity of genetic processes in the phylogenetic estimation procedure. Recently developed methods for species-tree estimation that not only consider the retention and sorting(More)