A morphological analysis of the skull size and shape of Kerivoulinae (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae) from Vietnam
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Southeast Asia is a region of high biodiversity, containing species of plants and animals that are yet to be discovered. In this region, bats of the subfamily Kerivoulinae are widespread and diverse with six species recorded in Vietnam. However, the taxonomy of the Kerivoulinae in Asia is complicated. In our study, we used diagnostic characters and multivariate analysis to determine morphological differences between the genera <i>Kerivoula</i> and <i>Phoniscus</i>. We showed that the two genera are distinguishable by the size of second upper incisors, the shape of skull, nasal sinus, canines, second upper and lower premolars. In addition, the two genera can be osteometrically separated by measurements of the braincase height, interorbital width and shape of anterior palatal emargination. Our data clearly revealed the morphological variations in the skull shape of <i>Kerivoula hardwickii</i> in Vietnam. This suggests a possible separation into three morphotypes, representing cryptic species supported by statistical differences with wide variation in skull shape, size and teeth. These results demonstrated <i>Kerivoula hardwickii</i> can be separated three subspecies, and the result will serve as the basis for the future assessment and classification of this group in Southeast Asia.
- Journal of Veterinary Medical Science
Journal of Veterinary Medical Science 78(2), 187-198, 2016
JAPANESE SOCIETY OF VETERINARY SCIENCE