This website aims to tell you nearly everything you need (and may ever want) to know about convergent evolution. It allows y ou to explore the way that similar adaptive solutions have repeatedly evolved from unrelated starting points on the tree of life, as though following a metaphorical ‘map’.

We have identified hundreds of examples of convergence, so if you want to learn about convergence in sex (e.g. love-darts), eyes (e.g. camera-eyes in jellyfish), agriculture (e.g. in ants) or gliding (e.g. in lizards and mammals) then this is your best port of call.

Follow the Map of Life on Twitter, Facebook or visit our Blog for fresh updates on the incredible world of convergent evolution.

Any of the information presented in the Map of Life may be freely reproduced, as long as it is acknowledged fully. Citation details can be found at the bottom of each Topic page.

Read more about the project...

Showcase Topic: Tool use in birds

What animals can drop stones into a water-filled tube to bring floating food within reach, bend wire to form a hook and use a short stick to retrieve a longer one that allows them to fish for food? Obviously chimpanzees? No, New Caledonian crows have evolved sophisticated tool use independently.

Spotlight on Research:

“Multilocus phylogeny and recent rapid radiation of the viviparous sea snakes (Elapidae: Hydrophiinae)”

Kate L. Sanders, Michael S.Y. Lee, Mumpuni, Terry Bertozzi and Arne R. Rasmussen. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 66 (2013) 575–591

A new molecular study of viviparous sea-snakes uncovers extensive convergence of feeding adaptations in sea-snakes, in spite of challenges in resolving exact relationships among these rapidly diversifying reptiles.