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Evolutionary History of Bats
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Book description

Advances in morphological and molecular methods continue to uncover new information on the origin and evolution of bats. Presenting some of the most remarkable discoveries and research involving living and fossil bats, this book explores their evolutionary history from a range of perspectives. Phylogenetic studies based on both molecular and morphological data have established a framework of evolutionary relationships that provides a context for understanding many aspects of bat biology and diversification. In addition to detailed studies of the relationships and diversification of bats, the topics covered include the mechanisms and evolution of powered flight, evolution and enhancement of echolocation, feeding ecology, population genetic structure, ontogeny and growth of facial form, functional morphology and evolution of body size. The book also examines the fossil history of bats from their beginnings over 50 million years ago to their diversification into one of the most globally wide-spread orders of mammals living today.

Reviews

'The last decade has seen an amazing confluence of new information on the evolutionary history of bats … Only a few years ago, the early fossil record of bats was close to non-existent, there was no consensus on Familial (or even sub-Ordinal) relationships among bat groups, and ideas on the deep-time origins of bats and the characteristics (flight and laryngeal echolocation) that make them unique among mammals were largely speculative. This book is timely and exciting – synthesizing new information … to give a richer and more detailed picture on the evolutionary history of bats than has ever before been possible.'

Gary F. McCracken - University of Tennessee, Knoxville

'This is a truly masterful integrative volume on bat evolution, and it will instantly serve as required reading in mammalian evolutionary biology. Drawing on the fossil record, molecular phylogenetics, biogeography, ecomorphology, biomechanics, and developmental biology, the editors and authors have produced the most detailed and up-to-date overview not only of the evolution of bats but of their most striking hallmarks - flight, echolocation, and rich taxonomic and anatomical diversity.'

Kristofer M. Helgen - National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC

‘For those with a technical interest in bat evolution.’

Source: The Guardian

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