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Data from: Phenotypic covariation and morphological diversification in the ruminant skull

Citation

Haber, Annat (2015), Data from: Phenotypic covariation and morphological diversification in the ruminant skull, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.1vm38

Abstract

Differences among clades in their diversification patterns result from a combination of extrinsic and intrinsic factors. In this study I examined the role of intrinsic factors in the morphological diversification of ruminants in general, and in the differences between bovids and cervids in particular. Using skull morphology, which embodies many of the adaptations that distinguish bovids and cervids, I examined 132 of the 200 extant ruminant species. As a proxy for intrinsic constraints I quantified different aspects of the phenotypic covariation structure within species, and compared them with the among-species divergence patterns, using phylogenetic comparative methods. My results show that for most species, divergence is well aligned with their phenotypic covariance matrix, and those that are better aligned have diverged further away from their ancestor. Bovids have dispersed into a wider range of directions in morphospace than cervids, and their overall disparity is higher. This difference is best explained by the lower eccentricity of bovids' within-species covariance matrices. These results are consistent with the role of intrinsic constraints in determining amount, range, and direction of dispersion, and demonstrate that intrinsic constraints can influence macroevolutionary patterns even as the covariance structure evolves.

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