I need to add taxa to an already published tre file. (the Prum 2015 avian phylogeny). *For example if I wanted to add Western Gull to the tree (Larus occidentalis) knowing that Larus & Sterna are sister species, how would I add that species onto the tree?

*I've tried adding nodes and drawing branches in Mesquite, but it doesn't allow me to just add a branch (only create a node). I've tried looking up any tutorial, but they all assume you're building a tree from raw data, not manipulating an already published tree.

Is Mesquite even the right program I should be using to add tips to that tree? Can I do it in Mesquite? Should I be trying to manipulate the tree in R?

***I'm also trying to map a discrete character on to the tree, so I've been using Mesquite since it's pretty straightforward to do it in that program.

Update: I found a more complete tree to use temporarily, although it's not the most resolved tree, it was more complete and I didn't have to figure out how to add taxa. For future analyses though, if anyone knows how to add multiple taxa to a tree, I would greatly appreciate knowing how to do it using Mesquite or FigTree.


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