Posted on May 14, 2019, 11:15 AM IST
THE WORLD WELCOMES BACK AN EXTINCT BIRD SPECIES
Lucky are those, who can witness things coming full circle. We can definitely call our generation lucky as we are witnessing the re emergence of a bird species that went extinct nearly 13600 years ago.
The magical species is that of rails which several hundred thousand years ago flew to an island in the Indian Ocean and gradually evolved into being flightless. That island was somehow flooded and the species of rails became extinct. This island is presently called Aldabra which resurfaced after thousands of years and brought along with it an evolved version of the pre existing rails. The rails that presently colonize this island are flightless.
This species of rails has undergone evolution for the second time and this kind of iterative evolution is not a common occurrence as stated by a report published in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society . Dr Julian Hume who is a palaeontologist and research associate at the Natural History Museum has quoted that “These unique fossils provide irrefutable evidence that a member of the rail family colonised the atoll, most likely from Madagascar, and became flightless independently on each occasion. Fossil evidence presented here is unique for rails, and epitomizes the ability of these birds to successfully colonize isolated islands and evolve flightlessness on multiple occasions.”
The island of Aldabra in the Indian Ocean region has displayed a very unique evidence of iterative evolution on this case of rails.