Program No.18-054

Comparative functional-morphological studies of tree shrews, tenrecs, and spiny rats in Smithsonian Institution

Endo Hideki

Period of invitation: 19th July,2006 - 25th July,2006

  I could collect the osteological data from the tree shrews, tenrecs and spiny rats. I examined the adaptational strategies in the visual sense and mastication systems in these groups. Especially in tenrecs the structure of the four limbs was observed to elucidate the locomotor apparatus in this family. Since the species of tenrecs have been adapted to various behaviors such as terrestrial, arboreal, arbo-terrestrial, fossorial and also aquatic, the data help us to clarify the functional-adaptational mechanisms in the evolutionary radiations in this group. It has been suggested that the lifestyles of the tree shrews, tenrecs and spiny rats showed primate-like adaptation and we will examine their interesting functional characteristics near future. On the spiny rats, we have just published the new theory of the evolution of the species in this genus. The present data will be available to establish the evolutional theory of the Japanese mammals in Ryukyu Islands.

Endo measure bones in Smithsonian Institution

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