Substitution rate variation in a robust procellariiform seabird phylogeny is not solely explained by body mass, flight efficiency, population size or life history traits

Andrea Estandia, Terry Chesser, Helen James, Max Levy, Joan Ferrer-Obiol, Vincent Bretagnolle, Jacob González-Solís & Andreanna Welch
Molecular substitution rates vary among branches, which can lead to inaccurate reconstructions of evolutionary relationships and obscure the true phylogeny of affected clades. Body mass is often assumed to be a major driver of substitution rate, though other factors such as population size, life history traits, and flight demands are also thought to have an influence. Birds of the order Procellariiformes—which encompasses petrels, storm-petrels and albatrosses—show a striking 900-fold difference in body mass between the...
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