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Genetics and Molecular Biology

Print version ISSN 1415-4757


PEREIRA, Sergio L.  and  BAKER, Allan J.. The enigmatic monotypic crab plover Dromas ardeola is closely related to pratincoles and coursers (Aves, Charadriiformes, Glareolidae). Genet. Mol. Biol. [online]. 2010, vol.33, n.3, pp.583-586. ISSN 1415-4757.

The phylogenetic placement of the monotypic crab plover Dromas ardeola (Aves, Charadriiformes) remains controversial. Phylogenetic analysis of anatomical and behavioral traits using phenetic and cladistic methods of tree inference have resulted in conflicting tree topologies, suggesting a close association of Dromas to members of different suborders and lineages within Charadriiformes. Here, we revisited the issue by applying Bayesian and parsimony methods of tree inference to 2,012 anatomical and 5,183 molecular characters to a set of 22 shorebird genera (including Turnix). Our results suggest that Bayesian analysis of anatomical characters does not resolve the phylogenetic relationship of shorebirds with strong statistical support. In contrast, Bayesian and parsimony tree inference from molecular data provided much stronger support for the phylogenetic relationships within shorebirds, and support a sister relationship of Dromas to Glareolidae (pratincoles and coursers), in agreement with previously published DNA-DNA hybridization studies.

Keywords : Dromas; Charadriiformes; Bayesian tree inference; phylogenetics; systematics.

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