Thursday, February 9, 2017

Ancient DNA Extracted from Extinct Bahamian Tortoise: Abaco Tortoises More Closely Related to Species from Pacific Galapagos than North America

By Kelly Delancy, AMMC Abaco

A thousand years ago, the islands of The Bahamas were home to land-dwelling crocodiles and large tortoises. They were the island’s top predators and prey species before humans arrived in the archipelago. An abrupt change in the island’s animal populations occurred around the same time people migrated into the Bahamian Archipelago.

The large reptiles, as well as many species of birds, bats and a large rodent have since disappeared. They can no longer be found in the islands, except through their skeletons which remain as evidence that these animals once lived here. Read more >>