First, have a look at this (warning, large file):


It is a PDF file of the unrooted mammal evolution tree that came from this research.

Now, here is a question for you. There is a rumor that this graphic or something like it has been converted to a poster for sale. Anybody know where to get one?

Thank you very much.


  1. #1 The Ethical Atheist
    December 30, 2007

    Awesome PDF! In the process of reading your other site now.

  2. #2 Ex-drone
    December 30, 2007

    Oh no. Look at all the gaps that the creationists are going to have to worry about now.

  3. #3 HP
    December 30, 2007

    You could always use Rasterbator and make your own poster.

    By the way, speaking of huge PDFs (and knowing how you feel about open source software) you do know about Foxit Reader, don’t you? It’s like Acrobat, except that it doesn’t suck.

  4. #4 greg laden
    December 30, 2007

    HP: That is a windows program. Glad to hear about it. I use PDF reader or some such thing in Linux. Plus the Gnome file manager has some kind of reader built in.

  5. #5 Jon Hlidberg
    December 31, 2007

    Thank you for this and so many other post I have enjoyed. Please excuse me if I might come on a little naive but I am totally uneducated in this field
    After reading the old post you referred to there is one thing troubling me: Here where I live in Iceland we have an avi-fauna that has been semi-isolated only since post glacial times, yet we see a considerable increase in size of many of our bird species, even some of those that are more or less migratory. Also noteworthy is that I believe that the Icelandic race of the Common Long Tailed Field Mouse, Apodemus sylvaticus, which probably came here first with the settlers only about 1100 years ago, now shows a considerable increase in size from her relatives in Scandinavia. This is always explained as a thermodynamic adaptation. When considering that some of the birds mentioned, like the Redshank, Tringa totanus, probably had very limited predation pressure for most of these 10 thousand years, this sounds very plausible.
    Now since climate has had this quite dramatic effect here (given that this is right), could the climate, i.e. cold, have had a greater role to play in the problems you are discussing in you blog than I am able to read from it or is it considered a minimal factor? Sitting here in the warmth of my home with cold weather outside, I cannot but think how terribly pressured by the winter weather the wild animals are outside my window. Is there a reason not to believe that large herbivores would rapidly increase in size and diversify primarily because of the climate factors and then being followed by the raptors increasing size rather than raptors having such a strong effect on prey size?
    Again thanks to all of you at Scienceblogs for the wealth of informative discussion you bring to us peripheral amateurs. It makes a huge difference. Keep up the good work!

  6. #6 martin
    December 31, 2007

    Re: printing of the pdf, this print on demand sitelooks interesting:

    Don’t know about the copyright though

  7. #7 greg laden
    December 31, 2007

    Jon: All good points. The interaction between climate, climate change and evolution is fascinating but difficult, difficult almost to the point that some people seem to be giving up on it.