Evolutionary Stories

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Reflection on Evolutionary Biology and Other Stuff.

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  • April 27, 2017
  • 09:49 AM

Code Orange for the Bengal Tiger!

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

Genetic study highlights challenging conservation of the Bengal Tiger in India.... Read more »

  • March 22, 2017
  • 06:38 AM

Break a leg!

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

What to do when your prey refuses to be swallowed? Eurasian Spoonbills (Platalea leucordia) in Hungary have a solution…... Read more »

  • February 21, 2017
  • 10:00 PM

Redrawing Ratite Relationships

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

Scientists have sequenced the DNA of two extinct birds: the moa and the elephantbird. Comparison with their living relatives led to some surprising findings.... Read more »

Maderspacher F. (2017) Evolution: Flight of the Ratites. Current biology : CB, 27(3). PMID: 28171755  

Yonezawa T, Segawa T, Mori H, Campos PF, Hongoh Y, Endo H, Akiyoshi A, Kohno N, Nishida S, Wu J.... (2017) Phylogenomics and Morphology of Extinct Paleognaths Reveal the Origin and Evolution of the Ratites. Current biology : CB, 27(1), 68-77. PMID: 27989673  

  • December 8, 2015
  • 03:35 PM

My First Citation, Due To A Couple Of Hybridizing Scaups

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The story of my first citation, and the birth of my H-index...... Read more »

Lavretsky, P., Peters, J., Winker, K., Bahn, V., Kulikova, I., Zhuravlev, Y., Wilson, R., Barger, C., Gurney, K., & Mccracken, K. (2015) Becoming pure: identifying generational classes of admixed individuals within lesser and greater scaup populations. Molecular Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/mec.13487  

  • November 10, 2015
  • 04:54 PM

Projects, papers and other pleasures

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

An overview of my PhD so far...... Read more »

  • May 20, 2015
  • 02:48 PM

Can we save the Golden-winged Warbler by burning the place down?

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The endangered Golden-winged Warbler can be conserved by fire management.... Read more »

  • May 19, 2015
  • 04:04 PM

On Snails and Shells

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The evolution of shell characteristics in snails in simply amazing!... Read more »

  • May 18, 2015
  • 04:14 PM

Batesian Snake Necklaces

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

Batesian Mimicry - where an edible species is protected from predation by resembling an inedible or dangerous species might lead to the origin of new species. This suggestion was tested by putting "snake necklaces" in the field...... Read more »

  • March 24, 2015
  • 04:08 PM

The Rise of Evolutionary Biology Can Be Attributed To ... A Harry Potter Character?

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The correspondence between Edgar Anderson and Ernst Mayr revealed a peculiar fact.... Read more »

  • January 27, 2015
  • 03:58 PM

Scientific Sherlocks: The Case of the Imperial Pheasant

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

In 1923, Jean Delacour discovered a new species of Pheasant in Vietnam. But things were not as they seemed...... Read more »

  • January 14, 2015
  • 04:43 PM

Nature's Drag Queens

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

Some men like to dress up like females. But do you find drag queens in other species? It turns out Nature has some surprises up her sleeves.... Read more »

Norman, M., Finn, J., & Tregenza, T. (1999) Female impersonation as an alternative reproductive strategy in giant cuttlefish. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 266(1426), 1347-1349. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.1999.0786  

Slagsvold, T. . (1991) Evolution of Plumage Color in Male Pied Flycatchers (Ficedula hypoleuca): Evidence for Female Mimicry. Evolution, 45(4), 910-917. info:/

  • December 28, 2014
  • 01:01 PM

Give us a Hand, Gar: More Insights into the Evolution of Tetrapod Limbs

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The transition from water to land is well documented in the fossil record, but genetic support is still scarce. Until now.... Read more »

Gehrke, A., Schneider, I., de la Calle-Mustienes, E., Tena, J., Gomez-Marin, C., Chandran, M., Nakamura, T., Braasch, I., Postlethwait, J., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.... (2014) Deep conservation of wrist and digit enhancers in fish. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201420208. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1420208112  

  • December 19, 2014
  • 11:35 AM

Mom, where do birds come from?

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

If you should ever get this question, the answer is rather short: “according to recent findings, birds are descended from maniraptoran theropod dinosaurs.” Makes sense, right?... Read more »

Xu, X., Zhou, Z., Dudley, R., Mackem, S., Chuong, C., Erickson, G., & Varricchio, D. (2014) An integrative approach to understanding bird origins. Science, 346(6215), 1253293-1253293. DOI: 10.1126/science.1253293  

  • December 11, 2014
  • 01:25 PM

Cheers! The Evolution of Alcohol

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

A recent study in PNAS traced the evolution of ADH4, an enzyme to process alcohol. Their results are quite surprising!... Read more »

Carrigan, M., Uryasev, O., Frye, C., Eckman, B., Myers, C., Hurley, T., & Benner, S. (2014) Hominids adapted to metabolize ethanol long before human-directed fermentation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201404167. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1404167111  

  • December 9, 2014
  • 06:00 PM

Irony on the Galapagos Islands

by Jente Ottenburghs in Evolutionary Stories

The Galapagos have become a model system for speciation research. But recently, several cases of speciation reversal have been documented. Quite ironic!... Read more »

Garrick, R., Benavides, E., Russello, M., Hyseni, C., Edwards, D., Gibbs, J., Tapia, W., Ciofi, C., & Caccone, A. (2014) Lineage fusion in Galápagos giant tortoises. Molecular Ecology, 23(21), 5276-5290. DOI: 10.1111/mec.12919  

Kleindorfer, S., O’Connor, J., Dudaniec, R., Myers, S., Robertson, J., & Sulloway, F. (2014) Species Collapse via Hybridization in Darwin’s Tree Finches. The American Naturalist, 183(3), 325-341. DOI: 10.1086/674899  

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