Rebecca T Kimball

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Deep avian evolutionary relationships have been difficult to resolve as a result of a putative explosive radiation. Our study examined approximately 32 kilobases of aligned nuclear DNA sequences from 19 independent loci for 169 species, representing all major extant groups, and recovered a robust phylogeny from a genome-wide signal supported by multiple(More)
We improve the taxon sampling for avian phylogeny by analyzing 7 new mitochondrial genomes (a toucan, woodpecker, osprey, forest falcon, American kestrel, heron, and a pelican). This improves inference of the avian tree, and it supports 3 major conclusions. The first is that some birds (including a parrot, a toucan, and an osprey) exhibit a complete(More)
Cytochrome b and D-loop nucleotide sequences were used to study patterns of molecular evolution and phylogenetic relationships between the pheasants and the partridges, which are thought to form two closely related monophyletic galliform lineages. Our analyses used 34 complete cytochrome b and 22 partial D-loop sequences from the hypervariable domain I of(More)
Galliform birds (relatives of the chicken and turkey) have attracted substantial attention due to their importance to society and value as model systems. This makes understanding the evolutionary history of Galliformes, especially the species-rich family Phasianidae, particularly interesting and important for comparative studies in this group. Previous(More)
Seed dispersal by vertebrates is one of the most common and important plant-animal mutualisms, involving an enormous diversity of fruiting plants and frugivorous animals. Even though plant reproduction depends largely on seed dispersal, evolutionary ecologists have been unable to link co-occurring traits in fruits with differences in behavior, physiology,(More)
Birds are the most diverse tetrapod class, with about 10,000 extant species that represent a remarkable evolutionary radiation in which most taxa arose during a short period of time. There has been a tremendous increase in the amount of molecular data available from birds, and more than two-thirds of these species have some sequence data available. Here we(More)
Neoaves is the most diverse major avian clade, containing ~95% of avian species, and it underwent an ancient but rapid diversification that has made resolution of relationships at the base of the clade difficult. In fact, Neoaves has been suggested to be a "hard" polytomy that cannot be resolved with any amount of data. However, this conclusion was based on(More)
Female mate preferences for extreme male ornaments may arise and be maintained because males signal their ability to raise an immune defence against parasites by the size of their ornaments. The bursa of Fabricius is an organ involved in antibody synthesis in young birds, but regresses before sexual maturity. The relationship between badge size, condition,(More)
Ratites (ostriches, emus, rheas, cassowaries, and kiwis) are large, flightless birds that have long fascinated biologists. Their current distribution on isolated southern land masses is believed to reflect the breakup of the paleocontinent of Gondwana. The prevailing view is that ratites are monophyletic, with the flighted tinamous as their sister group,(More)
A well-tested set of primers to amplify regions spread across the avian genome Rebecca T. Kimball *, Edward L. Braun , F. Keith Barker , Rauri C.K. Bowie , Michael J. Braun , Jena L. Chojnowski , Shannon J. Hackett , Kin-Lan Han , John Harshman , Victoria Heimer-Torres , Wallace Holznagel , Christopher J. Huddleston , Ben D. Marks , Kathleen J. Miglia ,(More)