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The evolution of migration
Date:8/4/2014

Tracing back through time and examining common ancestors of migratory and non-migratory species, they were able to conclude that there was more evidence supporting the idea that birds lived year-round in North America and began migrating further and further south, resulting in today's birds migrating thousands of miles every year.

Another result of the study suggests that many tropical species of birds are descendants of migratory ancestors that lost migration and stayed in the tropics year-round. "This is an interesting result because species diversity in this group is much higher in the tropics. Previously, more species in the tropics led to the assumption that temperate, migratory species are derived from tropical, nonmigratory ancestors; however, the results of our phylogenetic study suggest that the opposite pattern happened often in this group."


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