Large number of extinct bird species leads to misinterpretation of evolutionary dynamics

In the course of evolution, birds have adapted to the unique conditions of remote oceanic islands by losing their ability to fly. With the arrival of human on islands, most flightless birds have been driven to extinction. An international research group including Bayreuth ecologist Prof. Dr. Manuel Steinbauer has for the first time comprehensively investigated the extent of this bird extinction. The study, published in „Science Advances“, shows that a false picture of evolutionary dynamics in the bird kingdom arises when flightless bird species that have been wiped out by humankind are ignored.

Quelle: IDW Informationsdienst Wissenschaft