Weird evolution revealed in now-extinct monkey which inhabited Jamaica until a few hundred years ago — ScienceDail…


Analysis of ancient DNA of a mysterious extinct monkey named Xenothrix — which displays bizarre body characteristics very different to any living monkey — has revealed that it was in fact most closely related to South America’s titi monkeys (Callicebinae). Having made their way overwater to Jamaica, probably on floating vegetation, their bones reveal they subsequently underwent remarkable evolutionary change.

The research published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (12 November 2018) and carried out by a team of experts from international conservation charity ZSL (Zoological Society of London), London’s Natural History Museum (NHM), and the American Museum of Natural History in New York, also reveals that monkeys must have colonised the Caribbean islands more than…

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