Family tree for birds is now complete

When dinosaurs become extinct 65 million years ago, the evolution of birds began in earnest and continued over the next few million years.

Now, researchers from Florida State and Yale say they have finally resolved the bird family tree – the first time scientists have been able to show a complete family tree for birds.

Their study, published in the journal Nature, shows that all land birds diverged early on from a group that includes vultures and hawks. What’s more, it also shows that all birds evolved from a group of dinosaurs that included the Tyrannosaurus rex and Velociraptor.

Did you know that owls are closely related to toucans and hornbills? And that’s not all! Read on to find out more.


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