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Phylogeography of the White-tailed Mongoose (Herpestidae, Carnivora, Mammalia) - a phylogenetic study based on partial mtDNA of the control region (D-loop)
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology.
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2008 (English)In: Journal of Zoology, ISSN 0952-8369, E-ISSN 1469-7998, no 276, 385-393 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The phylogeography of the white-tailed mongoose Ichneumia albicauda is examinedusing phylogenetic analyses based on partial sequences of the mitochondrialcontrol region. The phylogeny is used to: (1) Analyse the phylogeographic patternof I. albicauda; (2) discuss the existing delimitation of subspecies; (3) test if thecoloration of the tail tip, generally white but occasionally black in West Africanspecimens, is a species polymorphism or if it has phylogenetic significance. Ourresults suggest a north–south division within white-tailed mongoose populations,and within the northern clade, we observe an east–west subdivision. Thisphylogenetic pattern is partly in concordance with the traditional division into sixsubspecies. The white-tailed mongoose probably originated in southern Africa,from where it dispersed northwards and colonized eastern and western parts ofAfrica, as well as the Arabian Peninsula. Colour polymorphism observed inWestern populations reflects variation at the individual level.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. no 276, 385-393 p.
National Category
Biological Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-24880DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7998.2008.00502.xISI: 000261205800009OAI: diva2:198457
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7506Available from: 2008-05-08 Created: 2008-05-08 Last updated: 2014-10-13Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Aspects of carnivoran evolution in Africa
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Aspects of carnivoran evolution in Africa
2008 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis concerns the evolution of African small carnivorans, with emphasis on East African Viverridae and Herpestidae (Carnivora, Mammalia). Viverridae and Herpestidae are two Old World feliform (belonging to the cat branch) carnivoran families with a confusing, and sometimes even misleading, taxonomic and systematic history, in addition to a scarce fossil record.

A new genus and species from Fort Ternan, western Kenya, dated to ca 14 Mya (million years ago), was described and tentatively assigned to the Viverridae. The excellent preservation of this material has the potential to shed much light on the evolution of feliform carnivorans from Africa. The fossil record of Carnivora from Laetoli, a Pliocene hominid-bearing site in northern Tanzania, was also described and placed in an evolutionary context. The age of the fossil fauna from Laetoli ranges from 4.3 Mya to 2.5 Mya. The fossil material from this site is remarkable for two reasons: it is extensive in both number of taxa represented and amount of fossil material, especially of small carnivorans, and it is fossilized and preserved under aeolian conditions. In addition to these paleontological studies, two studies concerning extant Viverridae and Herpestidae were conducted. First, the phylogeography of the white-tailed mongoose, Ichneumia albicauda, (Herpestidae), was examined, with the tentative conclusion that its origin is southern African. Second, the ecomorphology and biogeography of African and Eurasian Viverridae and Herpestidae was analysed in order to investigate if these features can be used to help assess their evolutionary history in the absence of fossils. The pattern that emerges in this study is that the species of Viverridae and Herpestidae do not generally overlap in ecomorphology where they overlap geographically, which indicates considerable competitive interactions between the families in both Africa and Eurasia.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Zoologiska institutionen, 2008. 31 p.
Carnivora, Evolution, Africa, Viverridae, Herpestidae
National Category
Biological Systematics
Research subject
Systematic Zoology
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7506 (URN)978-91-7155-593-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2008-05-29, sal G, Arrheniuslaboratorierna, Svante Arrhenius väg 14-18, Stockholm, 10:00
Available from: 2008-05-08 Created: 2008-05-08Bibliographically approved

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