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Whole-genome analysis of giraffe supports four distinct species

Species is the fundamental taxonomic unit in biology and its delimitation has implications for conservation. In giraffe (Giraffa spp.), multiple taxonomic classifications have been proposed since the early 1900s.1 However, one species with nine subspecies has been generally accepted,2 likely due to limited in-depth assessments, subspecies hybridizing in captivity,3,4 and anecdotal reports of hybrids in the wild.5 Giraffe taxonomy received new attention after population genetic studies using traditional genetic markers suggested at least four species.6,7 This view has been met

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