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Chemistry LibreTexts

Classification based on Evolutionary Relationships

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  • phylogeny_tree_med_574f3666186d6.jpegModern classification, unlike the Linnaean system, is based on evolutionary relationships, and common ancestry. 

    To classify species scientists must look at more than just physical traits. Phylogeny is the evolutionary history for a group of species. Scientists use evidence from living species, the fossil record and molecular data. 

    Phylogenies are shown using branching tree diagrams, like the one on the right.