Aveneu Park, Starling, Australia

Introduction: organisms evolved independently due to similar


In order to further understand and explore
evolution, we will become systematists and construct a phylogeny and how it
relates to evolutionary relationships among species or a group of species. With
phylogeny, we can also have a better understanding of which species are closely
related or not. Species that are much closely related, derived recently from a
common ancestor and they will share traits that are specifically found within
that group.  If these
traits are only found with in a group, then we can also say that the group of
species shares a derived characteristic but if traits are found with in a group
and in distant related species then the group of species are said to be
primitive and distant relatives. Taxonomy also provides an important
structure toward the classifying of organisms because no matter how complex an
evolutionary tree can become; all organisms should be organized per identifiable
discrete character that traces back to a common ancestor. One way to help identify
this character is by homology because we know that in homologous
structures in two organisms will share a structural theme present in their
common ancestor. Therefore, we can conclude that these two organisms are most
likely closely relatives. In our phylogeny tree, we can also expect three
different types of clades or groupings, which can be monophyletic, polyphyletic
and paraphyletic. A monophyletic group represents one common ancestor and all
its descendants, polyphyletic means that there is more than one common ancestor
and its descendants and in a paraphyletic clade shows one common ancestor but
not all its descendants. One thing to watch out for is analogous traits because
it can present a problem in forming our phylogeny because it can show how two
organisms share similar traits and a structural theme, making it seem like they
are closely related when actually they are not. Whereas in reality, these
organisms evolved independently due to similar niches or environmental pressures
that influenced the rise of a specific trait that is like another group. Therefore,
a phylogeny should not represent convergent evolution because it does not fully
support evolutionary relationships since these organisms do not have a common
ancestor and are completely unrelated to each other. Instead we will be
focusing on homology when creating our characteristics, constructing our
phylogeny tree and interpreting our tree that will serve as evidence that shows
evolutionary relationships between the birds.

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