Tree of Life – Intro

music
ambience: Marsh, dawn

“All things are connected, like the blood which unites one family” — those words attributed to Chief Seattle of the Susquamish tribe. Today scientists are exploring the interconnectedness of all living things through a project called the Tree of Life. I’m Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet. Michael Donoghue is a Professor of Biology at Yale University.

“The Tree of Life is the picture if you will, of how all of the things in the universe are related to one another – all of the species of plants, and animals and microbes, and so forth are related to one another – and so it’s a, it’s a graph, if you will, it shows connections between species, so all of the modern species are connected to one another backwards in time. And we can draw a great big tree-like graph showing the relationships of all of these species to one another on earth.

“So we would say, for example, that a gingko tree and an apple tree are more closely related to one another than either is to say a human, or a beetle. The notion is that the Tree of Life depicts the recency of common ancestry of things – of the species in the world. It’s a huge item because, in the modern world, we know of something like about a million and a half species. There’s likely to be more like five million, or maybe even ten million species, but for each pair of species, there’s a common ancestor, and so there’s, there’s almost as many branches in the Tree of Life as there are species in the Tree of Life.”

We’ll hear more about more about the Tree of Life in future programs. To hear about our CD, visit pulseplanet.com. Pulse of the Planet is made possible by the National Science Foundation. I’m Jim Metzner.

music

Tree of Life - Intro

Scientists are constructing a familial graph depicting common ancestry for all species.
Air Date:08/01/2006
Scientist:
Transcript:

music
ambience: Marsh, dawn

"All things are connected, like the blood which unites one family" -- those words attributed to Chief Seattle of the Susquamish tribe. Today scientists are exploring the interconnectedness of all living things through a project called the Tree of Life. I'm Jim Metzner, and this is the Pulse of the Planet. Michael Donoghue is a Professor of Biology at Yale University.

"The Tree of Life is the picture if you will, of how all of the things in the universe are related to one another - all of the species of plants, and animals and microbes, and so forth are related to one another - and so it's a, it's a graph, if you will, it shows connections between species, so all of the modern species are connected to one another backwards in time. And we can draw a great big tree-like graph showing the relationships of all of these species to one another on earth.

"So we would say, for example, that a gingko tree and an apple tree are more closely related to one another than either is to say a human, or a beetle. The notion is that the Tree of Life depicts the recency of common ancestry of things - of the species in the world. It's a huge item because, in the modern world, we know of something like about a million and a half species. There's likely to be more like five million, or maybe even ten million species, but for each pair of species, there's a common ancestor, and so there's, there's almost as many branches in the Tree of Life as there are species in the Tree of Life."

We'll hear more about more about the Tree of Life in future programs. To hear about our CD, visit pulseplanet.com. Pulse of the Planet is made possible by the National Science Foundation. I'm Jim Metzner.

music