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OTU data and analysis files for interspecies comparison of Philippine terrestrial small mammal diets

Citation

Petrosky, Anna; Rowsey, Dakota; Heaney, Lawrence (2021), OTU data and analysis files for interspecies comparison of Philippine terrestrial small mammal diets, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.c2fqz618q

Abstract

Island radiations represent unique evolutionary histories in unique ecological contexts. These radiations provide opportunities to investigate ecological diversification in groups that typically exhibit niche partitioning among their constituents, including partitioning of food resources. DNA metabarcoding produces finer levels of diet identification than traditional methods, allowing us to examine dietary niche partitioning in communities or clades in which species share superficially similar diets. Here we use DNA metabarcoding to investigate dietary niche partitioning in an endemic radiation of mammals in the Philippines. Our data reveal niche partitioning as well as phylogenetically-uncorrelated adaptive evolution in this small mammal community. Because 70% of the focal species belong to the tribe Chrotomyini, an endemic Philippine radiation of murid rodents that feed extensively on earthworms, this study sheds light on dietary adaptation and its role in the co-occurrence of closely related species. Our results reveal fine-scale resource partitioning within this community; our data provide compelling evidence for niche partitioning of diet that was masked by previous diet categories and will help in further dissecting the model adaptive radiation of endemic small mammals on Luzon. This study reinforces the notion that DNA metabarcoding can be a valuable tool for investigating both ecological relationships and evolutionary ecology at the community and phylogenetic level, respectively.

Usage Notes

Archive containing necessary files to conduct diet analyses described in the study.