Making new evolutionary innovations: butterfly study (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Thursday, December 12, 2019, 19:29 (401 days ago) @ dhw

QUOTE: By sequencing the genomes of all 845 butterfly species, Grishin and colleagues were able to work out a genomic family tree that in large part agreed with the existing one based on anatomy. But it also showed more. “People thought butterflies were closely related based on what they look like, but genomically, we saw something else.” Grishin’s group reclassified 40 species and suggested several new genus levels.

dhw: This whole study is based on the narrowest possible view of speciation. All of these butterflies remain butterflies, and the variations may be attributed to interbreeding and adaptation. The mystery of evolution lies in the innovations that have resulted in the broader concept of “species”, i.e. ants as opposed to sharks as opposed to eagles as opposed to lions as opposed to humans.

You are right. Adds nothing to the concept of advancing evolution and speciation, but the key point is genome studies must classify.

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