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paraphyletic Line breaks: para|phy¦let¦ic
Pronunciation: /ˌparəfʌɪˈlɛtɪk/

Definition of paraphyletic in English:


(Of a group of organisms) descended from a common evolutionary ancestor or ancestral group, but not including all the descendant groups.
Example sentences
  • In fact, it is possible that the group is paraphyletic; the last common ancestor of all polymerid trilobites may also have been ancestral to the agnostids as well.
  • These taxa together form a paraphyletic group at the base of the clade of biramous arthropods.
  • To represent this, we have used multiple lines drawn to paraphyletic groups in the cladogram above.
Definition of paraphyletic in:
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