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This Bird Went Extinct and Then Evolved Into Existence Again

Motherboard – “We know of no other example in rails, or of birds in general, that demonstrates this phenomenon so evidently.”

“…According to a study published Wednesday in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, the rail is an example of a rarely observed phenomenon called iterative evolution, in which the same ancestral lineage produces parallel offshoot species at different points in time. This means that near-identical species can pop up multiple times in different eras and locations, even if past iterations have gone extinct…Sea levels are now rising once more, thanks in part to human-driven climate change, so modern Aldabra rails might face the same fate as their extinct sister species. Even if that grim future awaits them, perhaps a third incarnation of the rail will eventually reappear on the far-flung atoll…”

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