The importance of fossils in understanding the evolutionary history of organisms was a controversial topic of debate during the first few decades in the history of phylogenetic systematics. During this time some authors suggested that extinct taxa could have only a minor role in phylogeny reconstruction (e.g., Patterson, 1981). For the most part, these types of bold statements were based on the fact that fossils are usually incomplete and, therefore, presumably not capable of overturning hypotheses based on the wealth of phylogenetic information that extant taxa provide. However, phylogenetic studies based only on extant organisms are certainly missing a...

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