Navigation Links
Scientists trace evolutionary history of what mammals eat

The feeding habits of mammals haven't always been what they are today, particularly for omnivores.

Some groups of mammals almost exclusively eat meat--take lions and tigers and other big cats as examples.

Other mammals such as deer, cows and antelope are predominantly plant-eaters, living on a diet of leaves, shoots, fruits and bark.

But particularly for omnivores that live on plant foods in addition to meat, the situation wasn't always that way, finds a new study by researchers working at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center in Durham, North Carolina.

The results appear today in the online edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"The research links dietary strategy, a basic aspect of animal ecology, with macroevolutionary diversification of mammals," said George Gilchrist, program director in the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Division of Environmental Biology, which funded the research.

"It's impressive that ecology has such a strong and clear influence on lineages stretching back millions of years. Darwin would be delighted with this paper."

Past research shows that animals with similar diets tend to share certain characteristics.

But this study is the first of its kind to look across all mammal groups, including omnivores, to reconstruct how evolutionary time changed mammal diets.

To do that, the researchers compiled previously published diet data for more than 1,500 species representing more than one third of mammals alive today, including primates, ungulates, bats, rabbits and rodents.

By mapping that data onto the mammal family tree, the researchers were able to trace backward in time and infer what the ancestors of each species most likely ate.

They found that while some groups of mammals maintained steady diets, others changed their feeding strategies over time.

Today's omnivores in particular--

Contact: Cheryl Dybas
National Science Foundation

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Scientists find neural stem cell regulator
2. Scientists identify FLT3 gene as a valid therapeutic target in acute myeloid leukemia
3. Scientists complete first-ever emperor penguin count from space
4. Scientists count penguins from space
5. Researchers use game to change how scientists study disease outbreaks
6. Salk scientists redraw the blueprint of the bodys biological clock
7. Scientists study the catalytic reactions used by plants to split oxygen from water
8. Scripps Research Institute scientists find promising vaccine targets on hepatitis C virus
9. Dartmouth scientists track radioactive iodine from Japan nuclear reactor meltdown
10. Genetic mutation depicted in van Goghs sunflower paintings revealed by scientists
11. UGA scientists reveal genetic mutation depicted in van Goghs sunflower paintings
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Scientists trace evolutionary history of what mammals eat
(Date:8/12/2015)... Aug. 12, 2015  New research unveiled at ... Android phones to steal users, fingerprints. Information released ... of fingerprint scanners on mobile devices, making the ... secure biometrics on mobile devices, HYPR Corp. recently ... convenient authentication systems with strong cryptographic security. More ...
(Date:8/6/2015)... Calif. , Aug. 6, 2015  Today, ... will visit Crossmatch ™ to learn firsthand ... and protect data. Crossmatch is a world leader ... technologies and expertise are helping federal agencies and ... and security.   "The vast majority ...
(Date:8/5/2015)... The biosensors market is proving highly attractive ... newer sectors, and development of devices resulting in higher ... seen the entry of multiple participants each year with ... (Photo - ) Recent ... Global Biosensors Market ( ), finds that ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):HYPR Corp. Addresses Android Vulnerability That Exposes Ecosystem-wide Biometric Security Challenges 2HYPR Corp. Addresses Android Vulnerability That Exposes Ecosystem-wide Biometric Security Challenges 3Rep. Honda to Visit Crossmatch in Redwood City 2Innovative Biosensors Incite Use in Non-Traditional Applications 2Innovative Biosensors Incite Use in Non-Traditional Applications 3Innovative Biosensors Incite Use in Non-Traditional Applications 4
... some regions and increasing global demand for high quality ... globally. This was the main conclusion of a special ... The special report follows a strategic workshop on ... of international trade" held on 25th - 26th November ...
... to evaluate the effect of Best Available Techniques (BAT) at ... and soil. The initiative is co-funded by the Interreg Atlantic ... laboratory is equipped with diverse equipment to take and keep ... used to monitor in situ gas emissions. The mobile laboratory ...
... fish, and have a devastating effect on fish reproduction, ... some of the first evidence that global warming affects ... study from the University of Leicester revealed that global ... parasite and host - with potentially serious implications for ...
Cached Biology News:Experts call on governments, industries and the water and trade research communities 2Neiker-Tecnalia sets up a mobile laboratory to reduce the environmental impact of farms 2Global warming changes balance between parasite and host in fish -- new study 2
(Date:8/28/2015)... ... August 28, 2015 , ... Pittcon is pleased ... present a session on chemical spectroscopic imaging at JASIS 2015 (Japan Analytical & ... largest analytical and scientific instruments show which will be held at International Conference ...
(Date:8/28/2015)... ... , ... Since the initial launch of FireflySci Inc. (FFS) in early 2015, the company continues ... Images such as the Fonz in a lab coat and Large Marge have been posted ... field. , FireflySci is proud to be the only cuvette manufacturer is the ...
(Date:8/27/2015)... , Aug. 27, 2015  Neogen Corporation (NASDAQ: ... the stock of United Kingdom -based ... microbiological culture media and diagnostic systems. ... into a leading provider of microbial testing and diagnostic ... testing markets. The company currently sells into more than ...
(Date:8/27/2015)... , Aug. 27, 2015  Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. ... emerging field of regenerative medicine, today announced that executives ... in the month of September.  , ... at Rodman & Renshaw,s 17th Annual Global Investment Conference ... at the St. Regis Hotel in New ...
Breaking Biology Technology:U.S. Symposium on Imaging Organized by Pittcon’s Program Chairman Chuck Gardner 2U.S. Symposium on Imaging Organized by Pittcon’s Program Chairman Chuck Gardner 3Cuvette Manufacturer FireflySci Launches Back to School Deals with Complimentary Shipping On All Orders 2Neogen acquires U.K.-based Lab M Holdings 2Asterias Biotherapeutics to Present at Upcoming Investor Conferences 2
... Fusion2006 CEO-CIO Symposium this month that companies should ... their core competency and push it outside of the organization. ... work in house raises a lot of questions, so WTN ... experience in IT and outsourcing. , ,This is part one ...
... been chosen to lead an effort to report medical outcomes ... be based on the level of technology investment. , ,WCHQ ... a practical method of collecting performance data from physician practices ... both physicians and consumers. While the vision for this information ...
... Madison, Wis. Berbee Information Networks ... Systems' U.S. IP communications partner of the year ... and customer satisfaction related to Berbee's sales and ... president of Berbee's Cisco practice, said it's the ...
Cached Biology Technology:IT outsourcing according to Tom Koulopoulos, part 1 2IT outsourcing according to Tom Koulopoulos, part 1 3Healthcare quality initiative shuns high-tech for now 2
... High Resolution - Efficiently ... 50 to 1000 bp. ... sizing PCR fragments, small ... restriction enzyme digestion, and ...
Biology Products: