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Anthropogenic extinctions conceal widespread evolution of flightlessness in birds

Title data

Sayol, F. ; Steinbauer, Manuel ; Blackburn, T. M. ; Antonelli, A. ; Faurby, S.:
Anthropogenic extinctions conceal widespread evolution of flightlessness in birds.
In: Science Advances. Vol. 6 (2020) Issue 49 . - No. eabb6095.
ISSN 2375-2548
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abb6095

Abstract in another language

Human-driven extinctions can affect our understanding of evolution, through the nonrandom loss of certain types of species. Here, we explore how knowledge of a major evolutionary transition-the evolution of flightlessness in birds-is biased by anthropogenic extinctions. Adding data on 581 known anthropogenic extinctions to the extant global avifauna increases the number of species by 5%, but quadruples the number of flightless species. The evolution of flightlessness in birds is a widespread phenomenon, occurring in more than half of bird orders and evolving independently at least 150 times. Thus, we estimate that this evolutionary transition occurred at a rate four times higher than it would appear based solely on extant species. Our analysis of preanthropogenic avian diversity shows how anthropogenic effects can conceal the frequency of major evolutionary transitions in life forms and highlights the fact that macroevolutionary studies with only small amounts of missing data can still be highly biased.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies > Department of Sport Science > Professor Sport Ecology
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies > Department of Sport Science > Professor Sport Ecology > Professor Sport Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Manuel Jonas Steinbauer
Profile Fields > Advanced Fields > Ecology and the Environmental Sciences
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Faculties
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies > Department of Sport Science
Profile Fields
Profile Fields > Advanced Fields
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science > 500 Natural sciences
500 Science > 560 Fossils, prehistoric life
500 Science > 570 Life sciences, biology
500 Science > 590 Animals (Zoology)
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2020 08:01
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2020 08:01
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/61240