Darwin’s ugly duckling surprises evolutionary biologists

Speciation and hybridization in Galápagos-marine iguanas

Charles Darwin had a very clear opinion of Galápagos marine iguanas – “a hideous-looking creature, of a dirty black colour, stupid and sluggish in its movements”. However, Darwin’s ‘ugly duckling’ has surprised a research team of evolutionary biologists from the Technische Universität Braunschweig. Their results show, for the first time, the speciation of two populations of marine iguanas occurring on the same small island – a phenomenon that is even unknown for much smaller lizards. This research sheds new light on the fascinating and complex evolutionary processes of the Galápagos archipelago. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)