Skull and postcranium mophometric linear measurements of Felinae

Published: 22 February 2021| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/fntx8pt8fv.1


These data are the raw measurements used in the paper "Pleistocene extintion and geographic singularity explain differences in global felid ensemble structure" by MMM & NPG (Evolutionary Ecology, Accepted). These are linear measurements, 31 cranial and 92 postcranial variables describing shape and functional proxies of the entire skeleton of extant felids. They were obtained with calipers to the nearest 0.1 mm. In the uploaded archive there are four sheets which contein the measurements of speciemens used for the different datasets described in the paper: i.e., "skull", "postcranium", "combined" and "combined and reduced" datasets. There are no missing values. In column "Sex": F = female, M = male and U = unknown sex. Given the large number of species, collections and variables that need to be listed we only mention here where to find all this information (all published papers). Illustration and definitions of variables are available in: - Morales M, Giannini NP (2010) Morphofunctional patterns in Neotropical felids: species coexistence and historical assembly. Biol J Linn Soc 100:711-724 - Morales M, Giannini NP (2013) Ecomorphology of the African felid ensemble: the role of the skull and postcranium in determining species segregation and assembling history. J Evol Biol 26:980–992 - the main text and Supplemental Material of Morales M, Giannini NP (Accepted) Pleistocene extintion and geographic singularity explain differences in global felid ensemble structure. Evolutionary Ecology. The list of Collections visited for measuring the specimens and their abbreviations are in "Steps for reproduce" With these data, we statistically demonstrate the existence of nine felid morphotypes at the global scale, whose occurrence is characteristic of different continental or biogeographic ensembles. Phylogenetically explicit analyses show that morphotypes from different felid lineages converged in different continents, but still ensembles remain distinct due to the fact that various morphotypes are missing in several of those ensembles. These quantitative analyses allowed for other qualitative analyses including fossil evidence wich suggests that most of the missing morphotypes were represented by species from those territories that went extinct during the Quaternary. Furthermore, reconstructing the hypothetical felid ensembles before Pleistocene extinctions rendered the continental felid faunas remarkably more similar to each other than they presently are, leaving their remaining, relatively minor differences to outstanding geographic singularities of each continental land mass.


Steps to reproduce

Linear measurements were selected, some from literature and some by direct comparison of felid skeletons (mostly South American), recognizing existing variations and possible ecomorphological interpretations. Once measurements were selected, MMM visited the following collections: Argentina: Centro Nacional Patagónico, Puerto Madryn (CNP), Colección de mamíferos del Centro de Ecología Aplicada, Junín de los Andes (Dirección de Parques Nacionales; APN- provisional acronym), Colección de Mamíferos del Instituto Argentino de Investigaciones de las Zonas Áridas, Mendoza (CMI); Colección del Grupo de Ecología Comportamental de Mamíferos, Bahía Blanca (CGECM); Colección Mamíferos Lillo, Tucumán (CML), Private Collection Marcelo Carrera, Puerto Madryn (MC); Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales “Bernardino Rivadavia”, Buenos Aires (MACN), Museo de Ciencias Naturales de la Universidad Nacional de Salta, Salta, Argentina (MCN-UNSa), Museo de La Plata, La Plata (MLP); Museo Municipal de Ciencias Naturales “Lorenzo Scaglia”, Mar del Plata, Argentina (MMPMa); Bolivia: Colección Boliviana de Fauna, La Paz (CBF), Museo Noel Kempf, Santa Cruz de la Sierra (MNK); Peru: Museo de Historia Natural, Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima (MUSM); United States: Academy of Natural Science of Drexel University, Philadelphia (ANSP), American Museum of Natural History, New York (AMNH), Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago (FMNH), National Museum of Natural History, Washington D.C. (USNM); Uruguay: Colección Zoología de Vertebrados, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de la República, Montevideo (ZVC-M), Museo Nacional de Historia Natural, Montevideo (MNHN). A complete adult dentition primarily defined the adult stage of the specimens, but whenever possible, we selected specimens with fully fused epiphysis of the long bones. Wild, sexed specimens were selected with priority but not exclusively.


Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Cientificas y Tecnicas


Convergent Evolution, Morphological Skeleton, Felid, Animal Morphology, Bone Morphology