How Closely Are Bats And Dogs Related

How Closely Are Bats And Dogs Related – Freeman’s dog-faced bat (“Cynomops freeman”) was found in Soberania National Park near the Panama Canal. (By Thomas Sattler)

Flying quickly in the darkness above the desert canopy of the United States and South America, a group of beautiful dog-faced bats hide a great secret. Now his secret is revealed.

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For over 50 years, scientists thought there were only six species of fast-flying, insect-eating mammals known as dog-faced bats. This number increased to eight with the discovery of two new species, Freeman’s Dog-faced bat (

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The legendary Waorani-faced bat (“Cynomops tonkigui”) was found in a National Park in Ecuador that has one of the highest levels of bat diversity in the world. (By Diego Tirira)

“Discovering two new species of mammals to science is very exciting,” said Ligiane Moras, lead author of the study and who did this work as a fellow at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) in Washington, DC. During his Ph.D. Scholarships at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil.

“After characterizing the anatomy of 242 dog-eyed bats from museum collections in America and Europe, matching their DNA and combining field observations, including vocalizations In short, we believe there are eight species in this group, two of which are new to science,” Moras said.

A dog-eyed bat of the newly described species Cynomops freemani waits to be released from a fog net. (By Thomas Sattler)

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The description of Freeman’s new dog-eyed bat, named after bat researcher Patricia Freeman, is not based solely on previously seen specimens.

Not only in drawings of the NMNH’s large bat collection but also in body measurements taken from living animals.

Flying through tree trunks at speeds faster than other bats, dog-eyed bats have eluded even the most dedicated researchers. So it was a combination of luck and special mist nets that led to the capture of Freeman’s dog-faced bats in Gamboa, Panama in 2012 by a group of students working together with staff scientist Rachel Page at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI).

Ligiane Moras examines specimens of dog-eyed bats in the Light Division of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. (By Micaela Jemison)

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The men are very similar in hand. “I didn’t know we had caught a new species, now called Freeman’s face bat, until Ligiane came back with the DNA results,” said Thomas Sattler, one of the students. in Panama, working as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Ulm and at STRI and currently at the Swiss Ornithological Institute

“We were very lucky to catch one of this species in the mist nets and secure their phones. Having the phone data allows us to find them again as soon as possible.” from measuring and learning more about this newly discovered type of tattoo,” Sattler said. .

Thomas Sattler, a researcher at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, is developing a bat sensor that can record and detect the echolocation sounds of various bat species as they fly at night. This photo was taken in a jungle in Gamboa, Panama. (By Elias Bader)

Based on Freeman’s new scientific description of the dog-eyed bat by recording its echolocation calls (signals it uses to navigate the air in and above the forest of the forest to search for reptiles), this species can be recovered using a “Bat Detector”, a special recording device that allows researchers to listen to bats as they fly through first and see them as one.

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The combination of genetic and morphological data with echolocation cell records is extremely rare for the description of a new bat species.

) did not include phone calls and was based solely on physical examination and DNA comparison of specimens collected in Ecuador. name “

Thanks to the Waorani tribe of Ecuador, some of whom live in the forest around the places where these bats were caught.

Catching dog-eyed bats in the wild is extremely rare. According to the researchers, museum collections combined with new technologies have been invaluable in further understanding this cryptic group of animals.

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It’s very interesting. Molecular tools combined with precise morphological measurements are opening new doors to the diversity of this little-understood group,” said Rachel Page of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. What new trends in invisible?”

From spines to tequila and heavy metal music. Let’s face it, bats are cool Smithsonian bat expert Kristofer Helgen answers common questions about bats. different shapes and sizes. They can have large, shapeless ears, strange noses, or complex bowls like orchids. So there is something familiar, comforting, almost romantic about dog-faced bats. So far, scientists have identified six species of these flying birds. Recent research has added two new species to the list: Freeman’s dog-faced bat (

“The discovery of two mammal species new to science is very exciting,” Ligiane Moras, lead author of the study, published in Mammalian Biology, told Smithsonian Insider. Moras, a doctoral student at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil, was spotted at the Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. there, he compared DNA, measurements and field records to identify two new species.

Collecting data on living bats is the biggest challenge for those who study them. Dog-eyed bats have been known to fly up trees much faster than other bats, making them very difficult to catch. A team of students working with Rachel Page, a scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, used special mist nets to do the work. The team was also able to record the echolocation sound of Freeman’s dog-eyed bat (but not the Waorani), so they could re-locate the forest using a “bat detector”.

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. “Molecular tools combined with detailed morphological measurements open new doors to the diversity of this previously unknown group.”

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No purchase necessary. The winner will be selected only on 10.01.2023. Offer available in the US only (including Puerto Rico). Offer subject to change without notice. See contest rules for full details.), the world’s largest bat, eats small birds, amphibians, reptiles and mammals, including other bats. Sharlene Santana

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About 70 percent of the 1,240 known species of butterflies eat mosquitoes, flies, flies, and other insects, and most others prefer nectar, fruit, or blood. But there is a fifth choice of food: In tropical areas around the world, about ten species of bats subsist on a diet of lizards, frogs, birds, and insects. , fish, or other bats.

“When we think of carnivorous mammals, our mind tends to go to lions and wolves and things like that,” said Sharlene Santana, an associate biologist at the University of Washington and conservationist. to mammals at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. “Few people know that bats have this special diet.”

Scientific knowledge about meat bats is increasing. Researchers have found that meat-eating evolved at different times among early insectivorous bats, but previous studies have not been able to get any idea about the changes that may have changed it. food, the researchers are left in the dark (full of bats) something in the same. They are among the bats that eat birds and reptiles in India, for example, and those that hunt amphibians and mammals in South America.

As it turns out, some physical characteristics are shared between different types of food. In the first analysis of its species, published today in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Santana and colleagues found commonalities in aspects of body size and skull anatomy. , showing that evolution has reached similar results in many cases to allow such nocturnal bats. from eating insects.

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