A Molecular Phylogeny of the New World Orioles (Icterus): The Importance of Dense Taxon Sampling

Our findings demonstrated the importance of dense taxon sampling below the species level in two ways

Kevin E. Omland

2002

Scholarcy highlights

  • We sequenced 2005 bp of the mitochondrial ND2 and cytochrome b genes from the 25 recognized species of New World orioles
  • Our data confirmed the monophyly of Icterus and produced a well-resolved phylogeny showing three main clades of orioles
  • Our findings demonstrated the importance of dense taxon sampling below the species level in two ways
  • Choosing different subspecies from either of these taxa would lead to different species-level phylogenies
  • ND2 evolved up to 40% faster than cytochrome b, yet shows a higher saturation threshold
  • Our findings suggest that ND2 may be superior to cytochrome b for resolving species-level phylogenies in passerine birds

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