PhyloLink is a tool developed by the Atlas of Living Australia to visualise phylogenetic trees and explore data from phylogenetic perspectives.

At the core of PhyloLink is the ability to intersect a phylogenetic tree with species occurrence records, environmental data and character information, resulting in the ability to generate flexible and customisable visualisations, profiles and metrics for biodiversity. The tools are intended for both novices and experts alike, and aims to make phylogenetic approaches to data exploration and visualisation accessible to a broad range of audiences.

A phylogeny (or a tree of life) is essentially a theory about how organisms are related to one another through evolutionary time. Phylogenies are based on the assumption that more closely related species will be more similar to one another, and they are commonly built using genetic sequences or physical characters. They are often visually represented as trees: the tips of the ever branching tree representing species, and the branches representing ‘evolutionary distance’ (e.g. length of time) from the ancestors from which they evolved.

The tool builds on PhyloJIVE and was developed as a collaborative project.

For more information: