Pictured: two or three species?

Postdoc David Toews is in the field capturing IMG_6890Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warblers (like these two which he captured in the very same mist-net). These species hybridize extensively; our goal in this study is to gain a much better understanding of how this ongoing hybridization is manifested in the genome-wide levels and patterns of divergence within and among these birds. How different are they genetically, and what are the specific genes that underlie their clear differences in appearance and other traits? More generally, situations like this are great for exploring the processes that drive speciation and therefore create biodiversity.

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