, Volume 150, Issue 2, pp 357-367
Date: 19 Nov 2008

Use of mitochondrial and nuclear genes to infer the origin of two endemic pigeons from the Canary Islands

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DNA nucleotide sequences from two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome b and NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2) and the nuclear intron 7 of β-fibrinogen were obtained to infer the phylogenetic origin of the two endemic Canarian pigeons: Bolle’s Pigeon (Columba bollii) and Laurel Pigeon (C. junoniae). Phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial and nuclear genes based on maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference all converged into a congruent topology: C. bollii clusters together with the Wood Pigeon (C. palumbus) which is common in Europe and Asia, while C. junoniae was found near the base of the clade that includes other species of the genus Columba from the Old World. Laurel Pigeon probably represents an old lineage that might have colonized the Canary Islands a long time ago (20 My) while Bolle’s Pigeon might have arrived on the archipelago much later during the Upper Miocene (5 My).

Communicated by J. Fjeldså.