(see Science, 2003, 300:1692-1697)
This file can be printed as a wall poster. Printing at least 54" wide is recommended.
(If you would prefer a simplified version with common names, please see below.)
Blueprint shops and other places with large format printers can print this file for you.
You are welcome to use it for non-commercial educational purposes.
Please cite the source as David M. Hillis, Derrick Zwickl, and Robin Gutell, University of Texas.
About this Tree: This tree is from an analysis of small subunit rRNA sequences sampled
from about 3,000 species from throughout the Tree of Life. The species were chosen based
on their availability, but we attempted to include most of the major groups, sampled
very roughly in proportion to the number of known species in each group (although many
groups remain over- or under-represented). The number of species
represented is approximately the square-root of the number of species thought to exist on Earth
(i.e., three thousand out of an estimated nine million species), or about 0.18% of the 1.7 million
species that have been formally described and named. This tree has been used
in many museum displays and other educational exhibits, and its use for educational purposes
is welcomed. Below are several adaptations of this figure; my favorites are the two stunning back tattoos
from Clare D'Alberto and Monica Quast. They individually adapted their tattoos
from another version of the tree that I used as a book cover,
which is shown below the tattoos. Below the book cover is a photo of the tree as it was used in an exhibit on
"Massive Change:The Future of Global Design" (which first opened in the Vancouver Art Gallery,
and has since appearedin Toronto and Chicago, and is scheduled to be displayed in various venues
around the world). Then, below that is an artist's commisioned work for a hospital, and links
to an interactive version of the Tree of Life diagram with common names.