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Oldest skeleton of a fossil flying squirrel casts new light on the phylogeny of the group
Casanovas i Vilar, Isaac (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)
Garcia‐Porta, Joan (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals)
Fortuny Terricabras, Josep (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)
Sanisidro, Oscar (University of Kansas. Biodiversity Institute)
Prieto, Jerome (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. Department für Geo- und Umweltwissenschaften)
Querejeta, Marina (Bavarian State Collection of Zoology)
Llàcer, Sergio (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)
Robles Giménez, Josep Maria (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)
Bernardini, Federico (Museo Storico della Fisica e Centro Studi e Ricerche Enrico Fermi)
Alba, David (Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont)

Date: 2018
Abstract: Flying squirrels are the only group of gliding mammals with a remarkable diversity and wide geographical range. However, their evolutionary story is not well known. Thus far, identification of extinct flying squirrels has been exclusively based on dental features, which, contrary to certain postcranial characters, are not unique to them. Therefore, fossils attributed to this clade may indeed belong to other squirrel groups. Here we report the oldest fossil skeleton of a flying squirrel (11. 6 Ma) that displays the gliding-related diagnostic features shared by extant forms and allows for a recalibration of the divergence time between tree and flying squirrels. Our phylogenetic analyses combining morphological and molecular data generally support older dates than previous molecular estimates (~23 Ma), being congruent with the inclusion of some of the earliest fossils (~36 Ma) into this clade. They also show that flying squirrels experienced little morphological change for almost 12 million years.
Note: Ajut del Departament de Cultura 2014/100609
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció MINECO/CGL2017-82654-P
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció MINECO/CGL2016-76431-P
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció MINECO/RYC-2013-12470
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció MICINN/FJCI-2014-20380
Rights: Aquest document està subjecte a una llicència d'ús Creative Commons. Es permet la reproducció total o parcial, la distribució, la comunicació pública de l’obra i la creació d’obres derivades, fins i tot amb finalitats comercials, sempre i quan es reconegui l’autoria de l’obra original. Creative Commons
Language: Anglès.
Document: article ; recerca ; publishedVersion
Published in: eLife, Vol. 7 (October 2018) , art. e39270, ISSN 2050-084X

DOI: 10.7554/eLife.39270
PMID: 30296996


48 p, 6.4 MB

22 p, 9.7 MB

The record appears in these collections:
Research literature > UAB research groups literature > Research Centres and Groups (scientific output) > Experimental sciences > CREAF (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i d'Aplicacions Forestals)
Research literature > UAB research groups literature > Research Centres and Groups (scientific output) > Experimental sciences > Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont (ICP)
Articles > Research articles
Articles > Published articles

 Record created 2018-10-11, last modified 2019-04-08



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