An unbiased molecular approach using 3’UTRs resolves the avian family-level tree of life

Heiner Kuhl, Carolina Frankl-Vilches, Antje Bakker, Gerald Mayr, Gerhard Nikolaus, Stefan Boerno, Sven Klages, Bernd Timmermann & Manfred Gahr
Presumably, due to a rapid early diversification, major parts of the higher-level phylogeny of birds are still resolved controversially in different analyses or are considered unresolvable. To address this problem, we produced an avian tree of life, which includes molecular sequences of one or several species of ∼ 90% of the currently recognized family-level taxa (429 species, 379 genera) including all 106 for the non-passerines and 115 for the passerines (Passeriformes). The unconstrained analyses of...
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