Sérgio's last PhD chapter on skull modularity in ant-eating placental mammals published!
Sérgio's fourth and final PhD paper on modularity of the skull in convergently evolved myrmecophagous placental mammals has just been published in BMC Ecology and Evolution (doi:10.1186/s12862-022-02030-9). In this paper, we show that extreme rostrum elongation and tooth loss in myrmecophagid anteaters have resulted in a shift in intermodule correlations in the proximal region of the rostrum. In contrast, the similarly toothless pangolins show a weaker correlation between the anterior rostral modules, resembling the pattern of toothed placentals. Our results reveal that despite some integration shifts related to extreme functional and morphological features of myrmecophagous skulls, cranial modular architectures have conserved the typical mammalian scheme.
Congrats again Sérgio for all your hard work on the morphological part of the ConvergeAnt project and good luck with your new job at the European Commission in beautiful Luxembourg.
Ferreira-Cardoso S., Claude J., Goswami A., Delsuc F. & Hautier L. (2022). Flexible conservatism in the skull modularity of convergently evolved myrmecophagous placental mammals. BMC Ecology and Evolution 22:87. doi:10.1186/s12862-022-02030-9