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Genome mapping shows tunafish related to fish with completely different body shape, lifestyles

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Bluefin tuna/lunamarina, Fotolia

Deep sea fish such as the black swallower, with an extendable stomach that enables it to eat fish larger than itself, and manefishes, some sporting spiky fins like a Mohican haircut, are close cousins to mackerels and tuna despite having completely different body shapes and lifestyles.

What evolution theory predicted this? Note also: “Researchers: Tuna closer to seahorse than to marlin

And this is a boring tunafish, remember? Tuesday’s sandwich.

‘Discovering that such radically different fish species are related is a bit like finding that a seal is more closely related to a cat than it is to a walrus!’ said Dr Matt Friedman of Oxford University’s Department of Earth Sciences, a co-author of the PLOS ONE paper. ‘By comparing genetic data with fossil evidence we were able to show that the origins of all these disparate groups lie in a period of rapid evolution that occurred around 65 million years ago. This is significant because this is when the Cretaceous extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs also killed off many groups of large fishes inhabiting the open ocean.

It also shows that previous methods of classification of fish are probably all wrong, but we won’t be hearing that just yet. If at all.

See also: “WD40:  some fish are more closely related ” to you than they are to tuna

2 Replies to “Genome mapping shows tunafish related to fish with completely different body shape, lifestyles

  1. 1
    lifepsy says:

    This sheds more light on Evolution.

  2. 2
    Mung says:

    Are we more or less likely to become ill from eating those more closely related or those more distantly related?

    I ask because most fish makes me puke. But I love tuna.

    I suppose if it helped in survival, eating close relatives would be favored by natural selection, and if eating distant relatives helped in survival eating distance relatives would be favored by natural selection.

    Apparently either is consistent with Darwinian evolution. But not a rabbit in the Cambrian. oh no.

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