Dominican Repubic and Haiti Feed

All About 'Bond's Line' - Both of Them

Map bond line bond00002(1)
The real James Bond's research resulted in his landmark theory in 1934 that the birds of the Caribbean were most closely related to North American birds, not South American, as had previously been thought.

This eventually led the noted evolutionary biologist David Lack to propose, in 1973, that the name “Bond's Line” or "The Bond Line" be used to denote this boundary.

(A quarter-century earlier, Lack had written Darwin’s Finches, forever linking Charles Darwin and the 13 species of finches in the Galapagos -- not exactly a lightweight.)

Although many people think the dotted line in the map above denotes "Bond's Line," it is just the small line in red (see above).

Bond also discovered a geographical barrier that once ran across part of the island of Hispaniola, home to the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

Bond found that the animals were noticeably different on either side of the invisible barrier, also known as the Jacmel-Fauche´ depression. It turns out that a shallow sea channel prevented animals from moving freely across the island a long, long time ago.

That barrier, too, is known as "Bond's Line," and it has been in the news in recent years -- and recent months -- as scientists do more research on the two little-known mammals indigenous to the island -- Hutias and Solenodons (see yesterday's post).

As I write in my book, Dr. Samuel Turvey named a Haitian mammal subspecies after Bond in honor of "Bond's line" and provided the map below. (Thanks, Sam!)

You can read more here.