Data from: The influence of feeding on the evolution of sensory signals: a comparative test of an evolutionary trade-off between masticatory and sensory functions of skulls in southern African Horseshoe bats (Rhinolophidae)
Jacobs, David S., University of Cape Town
Bastian, Anna, University of Cape Town
Bam, Lunga, South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (South Africa)
Published Dec 02, 2014 on Dryad.
Cite this dataset
Jacobs, David S.; Bastian, Anna; Bam, Lunga (2014). Data from: The influence of feeding on the evolution of sensory signals: a comparative test of an evolutionary trade-off between masticatory and sensory functions of skulls in southern African Horseshoe bats (Rhinolophidae) [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.h95h0
The skulls of animals have to perform many functions. Optimization for one function may mean another function is less optimized resulting in evolutionary trade-offs. Here we investigate whether a trade-off exists between the masticatory and sensory functions of animal skulls using echolocating bats as model species. Several species of rhinolophid bats deviate from the allometric relationship between body size and echolocation frequency. Such deviation may be the result of selection for increased bite force resulting in a decrease in snout length which could in turn lead to higher echolocation frequencies. If so, there should be a positive relationship between bite force and echolocation frequency. We investigated this relationship in several species of southern African rhinolophids using phylogenetically informed analyses of the allometry of their bite force and echolocation frequency and of the 3-dimensional shape of their skulls. As predicted, echolocation frequency was positively correlated with bite force, suggesting that its evolution is influenced by a trade-off between the masticatory and sensory functions of the skull. In support of this, variation in skull shape was explained by both echolocation frequency (80%) and bite force (20%). Furthermore, it appears that selection has acted on the nasal capsules which have a frequency-specific impedance matching function during vocalization. There was a negative correlation between echolocation frequency and capsule volume across species. Optimization of the masticatory function of the skull may have been achieved through changes in the shape of the mandible and associated musculature, elements not considered in this study.
External measurements_Nov 2014
Individual size, bite force and call frequency measurements for ten species of horseshoe bats (Rhinolophidae).
Data for archiving_submitted_Nov 2014.xlsx
Skull measurements_Nov 2014
Skull measurements for individuals from ten species of horseshoe bats (Rhinolophidae).