African bats studied with satellite tags


This 2016 video says about itself:

Yellow Winged Bat (Lavia frons)

The beautiful Yellow Winged Bat. Common across East and West Africa in woodlands.

From the University of Helsinki in Finland:

Tiny GPS backpacks uncover the secret life of desert bats

August 16, 2019

A new study from the University of Helsinki using miniaturized satellite-based tags revealed that during drier periods desert bats must fly further and longer to fulfil their nightly needs. According to researchers this signals their struggle in facing dry periods.

Wildlife tracking has revolutionized the study of animal movement and their behavior. Yet, tracking small, flying animals such as desert bats remained challenging. Now a new generation of miniaturized satellite-based tags is allowing unique insights into the life of these mysterious mammals.

Researchers used 1 g GPS devices to reconstruct the movements of yellow-winged bats, one of two false vampire bats occurring in Africa and one of the few desert bats large enough to carrying this innovative technology. “GPS tags have seen up to now a limited use with insectivorous bats due to weight constraints and low success in data collection — we achieved great results in tracking such a light species,” says Irene Conenna, a PhD candidate at the University of Helsinki and the lead author of the study.

Future under the changing climate?

“Bats are some of the most successful desert mammals. Powered flight allows them to efficiently track scarce resources and their nocturnal lifestyle buffers them from the baking sun. However, they still struggle to find enough resources during the drier periods of the year,” says Ricardo Rocha, one of the co-authors of the paper.

The study was conducted in Sibiloi National Park, Northern Kenya, along the shores of Lake Turkana, the world’s largest desert lake. Researchers placed GPS loggers in 29 bats, 15 in the rainy season and 14 in the dry and, for one week. Their whereabouts were recorded every 30 to 60 minutes every night. This revealed that during dry periods bats used larger home ranges and had extended activity periods, potentially to compensate for a shortage in food resources.

Bats comprise roughly one fifth of all mammal species and deserts are home to over 150 bat species. They display wide variation in morphology, foraging behavior, and habitat use, making them an excellent indicator group for assessing how species respond to changes in their habitats. “The responses exhibited by bats offer important insights into the responses of other taxonomic groups,” explains Conenna. “These new miniaturized satellite-based tags now allow us to better understand how increased aridity affects bats foraging efficiency, leading us one step forward to understanding limits in aridity tolerance and impacts of climate change,” adds Conenna.

Deserts around the world are getting warmer and as they warm desert creatures need to cope with even harsher conditions. “Understanding how animals cope with seasonal changes is key to understand how they might react to the challenges in the horizon. New technological devices, such as miniaturized satellite-based loggers, go a long way to help us in this task”, adds Mar Cabeza, senior author of the study, University of Helsinki.

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Masai Mara animals’ friendships, new research


This 2016 video says about itself:

Masai Mara – safari adventure in a wildlife paradise – Predators, big herds and wildebeest migration

The Masai Mara is one of the best-known nature reserves in Africa. The area is famous particularly for the concentration of predators. The film shows the life of a mother cheetah with her cubs and a pride of lions. But also the migration of large herds of wildebeests and zebras with the crossing of the Mara River attracts visitors in its spell.

From the University of Liverpool in England:

Animal friendships ‘change with the weather’ in the Masai Mara

July 31, 2019

When it comes to choosing which other species to hang out with, wild animals quite literally change their minds with the weather, a new University of Liverpool study reveals.

The findings, which are published in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, could help conservationists better predict the risk of extinction faced by endangered species.

“In the wild, a species always exists as part of a community of other species, which affect its survival. These interactions are crucial when it comes to predicting extinction risk: if we focus only on single species in isolation we may get it very wrong,” explains the leader of the research team, Dr Jakob Bro-Jørgensen.

In this study the researchers aimed to uncover if species alter their preference for different social partners when their environment changes — a central question to forecast how current environmental changes caused by humans are likely to affect animal populations and communities.

Over a year, they followed the distribution in space and time of a dozen species inhabiting the Masai Mara plains in East Africa, including buffaloes, giraffes, zebras, antelopes, ostriches and warthogs, to see how the strength of social attraction within individual species pairs changed between the wet and dry season.

All of the savannah herbivore species underwent seasonal changes when it came to their social groupings, with rainfall affecting half of all the possible species pairs.

The researchers suggest that this could be due to a number of reasons, including species migration, climate adaption and feeding preferences. For example, the presence of migrating wildebeest during the dry season may provide a welcome social partner for some, like zebra, but be avoided by others, like buffalo, while arid-adapted species, such as gazelles, ostrich and warthog, may group together during the dry season but separate during the wet season.

“Our study shows that the dramatic changes that humans are causing to the environment at present, be it through climate change, overhunting or habitat fragmentation, will likely create indirect consequences by changing the dynamics of ecological communities,” says Dr Bro-Jørgensen.

“This can cause unexpected declines in species if critical bonds with other species are broken. A particular concern is when animals find themselves in novel conditions outside the range which they have been shaped by evolution to cope with,” he adds.

Following on from this study, the researchers now plan to investigate how predation and feeding strategies interact to drive the formation of mixed-species groups.

African cichlid fish evolution, new research


This 2015 video from Malawi in Africa is called Chizumulu Island – Lake Malawi Cichlids – HD Underwater Footage.

From the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München in Germany:

Paleontology: New light on cichlid evolution in Africa

July 25, 2019

Summary: Researchers have developed an integrative approach to the classification of fossil cichlids and have identified the oldest known member of the tribe Oreochromini.

Cichlids (Cichlidae) are a group of small to medium-sized fish that are ubiquitous in freshwater habitats in the tropics. They are particularly notable in exhibiting a wide range of morphological and behavioral specializations, such as various modes of parental care, including mouthbrooding. Some species (mainly members of the genus Tilapia) have achieved fame as culinary delicacies and are of considerable economic significance. Cichlids have undergone rapid diversification in Africa, which is home to at least 1100 species. This process has been especially prominent in the Great Lakes in East Africa’s Rift Valley (Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and Victoria), where it is referred to as the East African Radiation.

Cichlid diversification in East Africa has become a central paradigm in evolutionary biology. As a consequence, dating the onset of the process and understanding the mechanisms that drive it are issues of great interest to evolutionary biologists and paleobiologists,” says LMU paleontologist Professor Bettina Reichenbacher, who is also member of the GeoBio-Center at LMU. Fossils from the area provide the sole source of direct evidence that would allow one to determine the timing and trace the course of lineage diversification within the group. However, the search for cichlid fossils has proven to be both arduous and extremely time- consuming. Indeed, only about 20 fossil species of cichlids from Africa have yet been formally described.

In a study that appears in the online journal Scientific Reports, a team of researchers led by Bettina Reichenbacher now describes a new fossil cichlid, which the authors assign to the new genus Oreochromimos.

Holotype specimen of the 12.5-million-year-old fossil cichlid Oreochromimos kabchorensis. The new species is the oldest known member of the Oreochromini, a lineage that is now represented all over Africa. (Photo: M. Schellenberger/SNSB-BSPG)

The name derives from the fact that the specimens, which the team discovered in Central Kenya, show similarities to members of the Tribe Oreochromini (hence the element ‘mimos’, meaning ‘mimic’, in the genus name), which are widely distributed in Africa today. “Determining whether or not the fossils could be assigned to any of the extant cichlid lineages was particularly challenging,” says Stefanie Penk, first author of the study and a doctoral student in Reichenbacher’s group. The difficulties are rooted in the great diversity of the modern cichlid fauna in Africa, and the fact that even distantly related species may be morphologically very similar to each other. “The architecture of the skeleton in cichlids is pretty conservative. All of them have a similar basic form, which undergoes very little change during speciation,” Reichenbacher explains. In collaboration with Dr. Ulrich K. Schliewen, co-author of the new paper, Curator of Fishes at the Bavarian State Collection for Zoology in Munich (SNSB-ZSM) and also a member of the GeoBio-Center at LMU, the team adopted the ‘best-fit approach’ to the classification of the fossil specimens. This requires comparison of the fossil material with all the relevant modern lineages of cichlids. In light of their contemporary diversity, that might seem an impossible task. But thanks to Schliewen’s knowledge — and the range of comparative material represented in the collection under his care — the strategy succeeded.

A unique glimpse of the past

Reichenbacher and colleagues recovered the Oreochromimos material from a fossil-fish Lagerstätte in Kenya’s Tugen Hills, which lie within the Eastern Branch of the East African Rift System. This site provides a unique window into the region’s past. The volcanic and sedimentary rocks deposited here date back 5-20 million years. They were overlain by younger material and subsequently uplifted to altitudes of as much as 2000 m by tectonic forces. As a result, the fossil-bearing rocks exposed in the Tugen Hills are either inaccessible to exploration or have been lost to erosion in other parts of Africa. Consequently, the strata here contain a unique assemblage of fossils. Undoubtedly the best known finds so far excavated are the 6-million-year-old remains of a hominin species, which has been named Orrorin tugenensis (orrorin means ‘original man’ in the local language). But cichlid fossils are also among the paleontological treasures preserved in these sedimentary formations — and they are at the heart of Reichenbacher’s Kenya Project, which began in 2011. The material collected so far was recovered in cooperation with Kenya’s Egerton University, and is now on loan to LMU’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences for further study.

The Oreochromimos specimens are about 12.5 million years old, which makes this genus the oldest known fossil representative of the Tribe Oreochromini. It therefore qualifies as the oldest fossil clade yet assigned to the Haplotilapiini, the lineage which gave rise not only to most of the species that constitute the present-day diversity of African cichlids, but also to the East African Cichlid Radiation in the Great Lakes of the Rift Valley. With their use of an innovative approach to comparative systematics, the authors of the new study have provided a basis for the taxonomic assignment of future finds of fossil cichlid material. “With the aid of this dataset, it will be possible to classify fossil cichlids much more reliably than before and thus to shed new light on their evolutionary history,” says Bettina Reichenbacher.

Serengeti in Africa, new BBC series


This 1 July 2019 video says about itself:

Serengeti: First Look Trailer | New John Boyega Series | BBC Earth

Lion, cheetahs, elephants, hyenas and baboons: we follow the stories of some of the most iconic characters of the Serengeti in this new dramatised natural history spectacular, narrated by John Boyega.

Coming July 4th on BBC One.

Kenyan 9-year-old boy saves cattle, lions’ lives


This 2013 video, in English with Dutch subtitles, says about itself:

Richard Turere: My invention that made peace with lions

In the Masai community where 13-year-old Richard Turere lives, cattle are all-important. But lion attacks were growing more frequent. In this short, inspiring talk, the young inventor shares the solar-powered solution he designed to safely scare the lions away.

By Taco van der Eb, in Mare, weekly of Leiden university in the Netherlands:

The Return of the King

Thursday 20 June 2019

Kenya’s lion population is on the rise, thanks to very close colla­boration with the local people. Mare joins Leiden biologists on a field trip to fit these creatures with collars and transmitters. “Oops… there goes my camera.”

Richard Turere was a nine-year-old Maasai boy when he was put in charge of his family’s cattle on the edge of Nairobi National Park in Kenya. At night, after he had herded the animals together into the boma, the fold, they seemed safe. But the lions jumped over the fence and took them.

He tried different things. Fire will scare them, he thought, but the light made it easier for the lions to see inside the fence. They lost their fear of scarecrows within a day. Then he had an idea: using an old car battery, a switch from a scrapped motor bike and a few bulbs from some broken torches, he rigged up a system of flashing lights. When he hung it round the kraal, it looked as if a cowherd was making his rounds with a torch.

It worked: the lions stayed away. This system of flashing lights is now used in large parts of Kenya and Richard Turere gives TED Talks on his invention called “My invention that made peace with lions.”

That peace was desperately needed. The number of wild lions in Africa dropped to very worrying levels in recent decades; a century ago, there were more than 200,000 – now there are about 32,000. At the turn of the century, there were about 2,700 in Kenya, of which only 2,000 are left. They could be completely extinct within twenty years, and they are already gone from large parts of West, Central and Northern Africa.

Nairobi National Park borders on the southern edge of the Kenyan capital, from which it is separated by a fence. A narrow river marks the other side of the park and wild animals can wade through the shallow, narrow stream, in and out of the park. Small Maasai communities live along that rim and graze their cattle, sheep and goats on the plains during the day.

Now and then, the border is the scene of trouble. If the lions attack the cattle here, the cowherds sometimes take revenge. The Maasai are not afraid of killing the predators with their spears. “Cows are valuable assets”, Hans de Iongh, Professor at Leiden University’s Centre for Environmental Studies (CML), explains. “I can understand the call for revenge if a lion steals one. The battle between man and beast continues, but with less damage nowadays.”

In contrast to other African countries, killing wild animals and selling bush meat is against the law in Kenya. “The traditional rite of passage, when a Maasai warrior must prove his courage by killing a lion, is not allowed any more, and that’s made a huge difference”, De Iongh continues. “Because some of the Maasai have switched to wildlife management, the lion population has grown considerably.”

De Iongh, Kenyan PhD student Francis Lesilau from Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and CML PhD student Kevin Groen are doing research in four national parks. “We hope our work will help protect the species. By the late nineties, lions were completely extinct in Amboseli National Par – killed by the Maasai. Gradually, they are returning from the surrounding areas.”

In 2007, Leiden University and Stichting Leo (an organisation for the protection of large carnivores in Africa) and KWS began fitting the lions in Nairobi National Park with transmitters. “In recent years, we have put collars with transmitters on at least twelve. The satellite shows us where the lions regularly leave the park at night and run in to trouble with the locals.”

The programme Living with Lions was launched at the same time; its aim is to train locals, mainly Maasai warriors, as lion rangers. “KWS runs educational programmes too: children learn how valuable this wilderness is, which builds support for management”, says De Iongh.

Evening falls over Nairobi National Park as Nickson Parmisa, chair of the local Maasai committee, herds his sheep and goats safely into the boma. “We’ve installed flashing lights here too. We still lose cattle, but now it’s more often during the day. Our animals drink over there, at the river; the lions are on the other side of the water. If a cowherd does not look out, they’ll seize a sheep or a goat. That’s why we’re glad with the transmitters; it means we know where the lions are, and we can avoid that area.”

It’s still dark when De Iongh, a group of students and PhD student Luka Narisha enter the Meru National Park. Circling vultures give away the presence of a kill. Narisha investigates on foot, disappearing into the undergrowth. It’s not without risk: a lion could be close, guarding its prey. The carcass of a buffalo has already almost been cleared of its flesh. Narisha estimates that it’s been there for a day or two. The students have found what they came for: scat, i.e. lion shit, and start collecting samples.

Two male lions are asleep in the shadow of a small tree in Lake Nakuru National Park. KWS vet Titus Kaitho drives over carefully, takes aim and shoots. The lions jump up, surprised. There’s a feather sticking out of one male’s leg. He manages to draw out the bright pink dart with his mouth, but it’s too late. The tranquillizer is already taking effect and the creature starts to fall asleep.

Everyone rushes out of the cars. A ranger lifts the slumbering animal’s massive head so that Francis Lesilau can fit the collar round its neck. Hans De Iongh and KWS’ Monica Chege fasten the transmitter with nuts and bolts.

It’s already dusk by the time the vet administers the antidote, but the lion is in no hurry to wake up. I want to capture the moment as well as I can and set up a camera on a tripod so I can take pictures via remote control. It’s dark before the lion finally gets up. He heads straight towards my camera and oops…he starts to chew it. Then he runs off with my camera and tripod in his mouth. Three Land Cruisers race after him through the ink-black bush. We can catch glimpses of the speeding creature now and then in the headlights. He only drops the camera and flees once we have him surrounded, following a rowdy chase. A ranger, grinning from ear to ear, picks the device out of the undergrowth.

“I had three today. One scat was really fresh, disgusting, like trying to grab custard.” Messages from Leiden biology students Iris Noordermeer and Dionne Jacobs flood in on the phones via WhatsApp. Nine students, supervised by Kevin Groen, have been collecting data for three months. Groen shares his results with the researchers from Kenya Wildlife Service, Monica Chege, Luka Narisha and Francis Lesilau, who is also associated with Leiden University.

“We count the different kinds of prey, too”, Groen says. “If we don’t want lions snacking outside the park, we must make sure that there is enough prey to keep them happy. We can adapt our strategy to that.” He knows that fences, on the other hand, aren’t always the solution. “In enclosed parks, grazers run into lions and other predators more often, so they are more alert and graze less, which can create a kind of landscape of fear. If there’s less grazing, more trees grow, which certain animals don’t like and that, in turn, affects the population.”

That evening, the researchers hold a “calling station” in the Amboseli National Park. They use an amplifier to play the sound of a prey. As soon as the whimpers of a distressed wildebeest sound across the plain, the first lions prick up their ears. Then more and more join them. The large group gets up quietly and starts walking towards the noise. There are thirteen of them: females, young adults and some young animals that still have spots on their fur. As soon as it’s dark, the researchers return, hoping to find scat here tomorrow. I get a few hours sleep before the alarm goes off at five o’clock.

The next morning, the coast is clear: the lions have been spotted further away. The students fervently fill ampoules and plastic grab bags with the first samples from Amboseli National Park: tell the world on WhatsApp! On the way back, a musty smell starts to fill the car.

Cattle, endangered antelopes, lions in Kenya


This 2014 video says about itself:

Jackson’s Hartebeest (Alcelaphus buselaphus jacksoni)

There are only two easily accessible places in Africa with opportunity to see this subspecies – Kidepo Valley and Murchison Falls in Uganda.

From the University of Wyoming in the USA:

Cattle ranching could help conserve rare African antelope, lions

May 3, 2019

Summary: Ranch managers’ placement of cattle corrals away from Jackson’s hartebeest likely would allow the antelope species to increase, with lions focused on the zebras that congregate at the resulting glades in central Kenya.

Endangered African antelope and the lions that prey on them may benefit from certain cattle ranching practices in Kenya, according to newly published research led by a 2017 University of Wyoming Ph.D. graduate.

Caroline Ng’weno, who conducted the research during her UW graduate studies, is one of the first — if not the first — Kenyan women to have earned a Ph.D. working as a field biologist in Kenya. Ng’weno now heads the Pride of Meru program for the Born Free Foundation, an organization dedicated to research and protection of lions in central Kenya. Her work has provided new insights into the interaction among Jackson’s hartebeest, a species of conservation concern; other wild ungulates; cattle; and lions in Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Conservancy, which is managed for both wildlife conservation and cattle ranching.

As detailed in the scientific journals Ecology and Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, Jackson’s hartebeest — a large antelope that can weigh over 400 pounds — has been in significant decline in that part of Kenya since the reintroduction of lions in the late 1980s. That’s primarily because hartebeest share savanna habitat with zebras, the primary prey of the approximately 70 lions comprising five prides in the conservancy.

“Predation risk for hartebeest was elevated in association with zebra, implying that apparent competition with zebra may negatively impact hartebeest populations”, Ng’weno and fellow researchers wrote in Ecology. That’s in line with previous research that shows secondary prey such as hartebeest can suffer significant population declines when large carnivores are restored to an ecosystem after a long absence.

Restoration of lions to the Ol Pejeta Conservancy and elsewhere in central Kenya resulted from greater tolerance by ranch managers, following decades of shooting and poisoning of the top predators. That’s because ranch managers are increasingly recognizing that tourism resulting from abundant wildlife populations can help them sustain their livestock operations in drought years and other lean times. However, the decline of hartebeest numbers has led some ranch managers to considering reimplementing lethal control of lions.

According to Ng’weno’s research, the ranchers could hold the key to maintaining both the lion and hartebeest populations.

It turns out that abandoned cattle corrals create nutrient hotspots called glades that attract zebras, and therefore lions — but not hartebeest. And the researchers showed that survival of hartebeest in areas without glades was more than twice as high as in areas with glades.

So, ranch managers’ placement of cattle corrals away from hartebeest likely would allow the antelope species to increase, with lions focused on the zebras that congregate at the resulting glades.

“In our study system, spatial separation between zebra and hartebeest improved survival rates of hartebeest, probably by reducing encounters with lions hunting in areas with high zebra densities,” they wrote. “Strategic placement of glades, therefore, offers a promising approach to creating refuges for hartebeest and perhaps other species of secondary prey.”

While some might argue that eliminating glades through reduction of cattle production might be an option for hartebeest conservation, the researchers say that’s not practical. That’s because ranchers are unlikely to reduce cattle numbers voluntarily; and reducing cattle numbers would likely boost zebra numbers, along with lions, as cattle and zebra diets overlap. The researchers note that predation by lions on cattle is rare compared to predation on zebras.

“Alternative conservation interventions are required for the long-term persistence of lions and their prey not only on Ol Pejeta Conservancy, but more widely in (Kenya’s) Laikipia County and the whole of sub-Saharan Africa,” they wrote.

The research involved capturing and placing GPS collars on lions in five different prides representing 70 individuals; identification and tracking of 179 hartebeest; and analysis of 246 sites where lions killed animals. The scientists also studied lion predation on buffalo, zebras, impala and warthogs. Notably, they found that the proximity of buffalo to zebras reduced the risk of predation on buffalo, contrary to the relative risk for hartebeest.

Big prehistoric carnivore discovered in Kenyan museum


This 18 April 2019 video is called Newly Discovered Ancient Carnivore Was Bigger Than a Polar Bear.

From Ohio University in the USA:

Fossils found in museum drawer in Kenya belong to gigantic carnivore

Paleontologists say mammal was larger than a polar bear

April 18, 2019

Paleontologists at Ohio University have discovered a new species of meat-eating mammal larger than any big cat stalking the world today. Larger than a polar bear, with a skull as large as that of a rhinoceros and enormous piercing canine teeth, this massive carnivore would have been an intimidating part of the eastern African ecosystems occupied by early apes and monkeys.

In a new study published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, the researchers name Simbakubwa kutokaafrika, a gigantic carnivore known from most of its jaw, portions of its skull, and parts of its skeleton. The 22-million-year-old fossils were unearthed in Kenya decades ago as researchers canvassed the region searching for evidence of ancient apes. Specimens were placed in a drawer at the National Museums of Kenya and not given a great deal of attention until Ohio University researchers Dr. Nancy Stevens and Dr. Matthew Borths rediscovered them, recognizing their significance.

“Opening a museum drawer, we saw a row of gigantic meat-eating teeth, clearly belonging to a species new to science,” says study lead author Borths. Borths was a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow with Stevens in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Ohio University when the research was conducted, and is now Curator of the Division of Fossil Primates at the Duke Lemur Center at Duke University.

Simbakubwa is Swahili for “big lion” because the animal was likely at the top of the food chain in Africa, as lions are in modern African ecosystems. Yet Simbakubwa was not closely related to big cats or any other mammalian carnivore alive today. Instead, the creature belonged to an extinct group of mammals called hyaenodonts.

Hyaenodonts were the first mammalian carnivores in Africa. For about 45 million years after the extinction of the non-avian dinosaurs, hyaenodonts were the apex predators in Africa. Then, after millions of years of near-isolation, tectonic movements of the Earth’s plates connected Africa with the northern continents, allowing floral and faunal exchange between landmasses. Around the time of Simbakubwa, the relatives of cats, hyenas, and dogs began to arrive in Africa from Eurasia.

As the relatives of cats and dogs were going south, the relatives of Simbakubwa were going north. “It’s a fascinating time in biological history,” Borths says. “Lineages that had never encountered each other begin to appear together in the fossil record.”

The species name, kutokaafrika, is Swahili for “coming from Africa” because Simbakubwa is the oldest of the gigantic hyaenodonts, suggesting this lineage of giant carnivores likely originated on the African continent and moved northward to flourish for millions of years.

Ultimately, hyaenodonts worldwide went extinct. Global ecosystems were changing between 18 and 15 million years ago as grasslands replaced forests and new mammalian lineages diversified. “We don’t know exactly what drove hyaenodonts to extinction, but ecosystems were changing quickly as the global climate became drier. The gigantic relatives of Simbakubwa were among the last hyaenodonts on the planet,” remarks Borths.

“This is a pivotal fossil, demonstrating the significance of museum collections for understanding evolutionary history,” notes Stevens, Professor in the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine at Ohio University and co-author of the study. “Simbakubwa is a window into a bygone era. As ecosystems shifted, a key predator disappeared, heralding Cenozoic faunal transitions that eventually led to the evolution of the modern African fauna.”

This study was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation (EAR/IF-0933619; BCS-1127164; BCS-1313679; EAR-1349825; BCS-1638796; DBI-1612062), The Leakey Foundation, National Geographic Society (CRE), Ohio University Research Council, Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, SICB and The Explorers Club.

This discovery underscores both the importance of supporting innovative uses of fossil collections, as well as the importance of supporting the research and professional development of talented young postdoctoral scientists like Dr. Borths,” said Daniel Marenda, a program director at the National Science Foundation, which funded this research. “This work has the potential to help us understand how species adapt — or fail to adapt in this case — to a rapidly changing global climate.”