Speciation is a lineage splitting event that results in two different organisms.Speciation commonly occurs when organisms of the same population are separated for a time period and then go through small evolutionary changes over time until the point that they can no longer reproduce and produces viable offspring together.
|The red crossbill is seen to the left and the South Hill cross bill is seen to the right|
The South hills crossbill is potentially a newly discovered species of finch from the Idaho mountain range. It has been evolving for about 6,000 years and is considered to be a newly discovered species based on its dependence and difference in food source. . The South Hills crossbill feeds on the Rocky Mountain lodgepole pine. The South Hills crossbill has been diverging from the red crossbill because of its food source. In Idaho predator competition for the lodgepole pine has decreased allowing the South hill crossbills to feed on the pine more frequently. This has been resulting in the coevolution of the lodgepole pine. Tom Parchman a biologist from the University of Nevada led a genomic study on the coevolution of the South Hill crossbill and the lodgepine. He and his team were studying the evolutionary genetics of crossbills in the United States. Some of the key differences in the South Hill crossbill and the red cross finches is that they do not migrate, there calls differ, and their bill size. Parchman states how this event is very rare in North America due to the fact that there is
genetic evidence for the distinctness of the locally adapted population of red crossbills that could result in a new bird species.