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Response to Comment on “Whole-genome analyses resolve early branches in the tree of life of modern birds”

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Science  25 Sep 2015:
Vol. 349, Issue 6255, pp. 1460
DOI: 10.1126/science.aab1578


  • Fig. 1 Genome-scale avian timetrees with 95% CIs and different maximum age constraints for Neornithes.

    (A to C) Timetrees using the 86.5, 99.6, and 117.5 Ma maximum constraints, respectively, on exons of 1156 clocklike genes and the most recent version of the MCMCTREE program (20). The 95% CIs (blue bars) in (A) and (B) are slightly narrower and some divergences moved backward or forward in time by approximately one million years compared with those in Jarvis et al. (2), as a result of stochastic MCMC sampling effects and using an updated version of the software. However, the overall results are similar and all lie within the previously defined 95% CIs. Branches with multiple species in the same suborder have been collapsed, and the reptilian outgroups (lizard, turtle, and alligator) are not shown. We do not show the four extinct lineages included in the Mitchell et al. (3) tree because they are not directly used in the Bayesian dating analysis. Order/suborder names are color coded according to large monophyletic groups. (D) Comparison of dates and 95% CIs for key avian divergences using the different maximum constraints. There are no dramatic shifts in dates beyond the Neornithes, Palaeognathae, and Neognathae splits, unless one eliminates the maximum age constraint for Neornithes altogether. MYA, million years ago.

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