Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Mol Phylogenet Evol. 2003 Oct;29(1):126-38.

Phylogeny of Passerida (Aves: Passeriformes) based on nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data.

Author information

Department of Vertebrate Zoology and Molecular Systematics Laboratory, Swedish Museum of Natural History, Frescativagen 44, P.O. Box 50007, SE-10405 Stockholm, Sweden.


Passerida is a monophyletic group of oscine passerines that includes almost 3500 species (about 36%) of all bird species in the world. The current understanding of higher-level relationships within Passerida is based on DNA-DNA hybridizations [C.G. Sibley, J.E. Ahlquist, Phylogeny and Classification of Birds, 1990, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT]. Our results are based on analyses of 3130 aligned nucleotide sequence data obtained from 48 ingroup and 13 outgroup genera. Three nuclear genes were sequenced: c-myc (498-510 bp), RAG-1 (930 bp), and myoglobin (693-722 bp), as well one mitochondrial gene; cytochrome b (879 bp). The data were analysed by parsimony, maximum-likelihood, and Bayesian inference. The African rockfowl and rockjumper are found to constitute the deepest branch within Passerida, but relationships among the other taxa are poorly resolved--only four major clades receive statistical support. One clade corresponds to Passeroidea of [C.G. Sibley, B.L. Monroe, Distribution and Taxonomy of Birds of the World, 1990, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT] and includes, e.g., flowerpeckers, sunbirds, accentors, weavers, estrilds, wagtails, finches, and sparrows. Starlings, mockingbirds, thrushes, Old World flycatchers, and dippers also group together in a clade corresponding to Muscicapoidea of Sibley and Monroe [op. cit.]. Monophyly of their Sylvioidea could not be corroborated--these taxa falls either into a clade with wrens, gnatcatchers, and nuthatches, or one with, e.g., warblers, bulbuls, babblers, and white-eyes. The tits, penduline tits, and waxwings belong to Passerida but have no close relatives among the taxa studied herein.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center