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Best practices for justifying fossil calibrations
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The evolutionary radiation of modern birds (Neornithes): reconciling molecules, morphology and the fossil record
TLDR
Current understanding of the early fossil history of Neornithes is highlighted in conjunction with available phylogenetic resolution for the major extant clades, as well as recent advancements in genetic methods that have constrained time estimates for major evolutionary divergences. Expand
Error in Estimation of Rate and Time Inferred from the Early Amniote Fossil Record and Avian Molecular Clocks
TLDR
The quantification of errors in the synapsid–diapsid calibration illustrates that although some error can derive from geological dating of sedimentary rocks, the absence of good stem fossils makes phylogenetic error the most critical. Expand
Relationships of Birds – Molecules versus Morphology
TLDR
Molecules and morphology sometimes point to different phylogenies of modern birds, but the evolutionary meaning of a phylogeny requires knowledge from both morphology and fossils. Expand
Avian molecular systematics on the rebound: a fresh look at modern shorebird phylogenetic relationships
TLDR
These studies indicate that sampling more taxa and slower evolving nuclear genes yields strong phylogenetic resolution among the major shorebird (order Charadriiformes) families, and show surprising overall consensus and converge on certain novel clades. Expand
Late Holocene occupation of Gentoo Penguins (Pygoscelis papua) on Byers Peninsula, Livingston Island, Antarctica
TLDR
Results indicate that penguin occupation lagged behind deglaciation by over 2,000 years, and small numbers of Chinstrap Penguins also occupy the same breeding colonies as Gentoo Penguins at Byers Peninsula, but their absence in the ancient sediments suggests that they have only recently colonized this area. Expand
A new specimen of the fossil Palaeognath Lithornis from the earliest Palaeogene of Denmark
TLDR
The presence of members of Lithornithidae in the Lower Eocene (earliest Tertiary) is consistent with the hypothesis that basal divergences within Palaeognathae occurred at an earlier geological time, perhaps prior to the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, as has been proposed based on evidence from much less well-preserved fossil material. Expand
Mitochondrial DNA Analysis Reveals Substantial Population Structure within the Endangered Black-Capped Petrel (Pterodroma hasitata)
TLDR
The results imply that the Black-capped Petrel may comprise two distinct, reproductively isolated taxa, which would suggest breeding isolation of the dark and light morphs. Expand
Tempo and Pattern of Avian Brain Size Evolution
TLDR
It is confirmed that no significant increase in relative brain size accompanied the trend toward miniaturization or evolution of flight during the theropod-bird transition, and patterns suggest that an early adaptive radiation in brain size laid the foundation for subsequent selection and stabilization. Expand
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