Abstract # 6139 Event # 233:

Scheduled for Saturday, June 20, 2015 10:45 AM-11:00 AM: (Cascade H) Oral Presentation


PLESIADAPIFORM BIOGEOGRAPHIC DISPERSAL – A STUDY OF FOSSIL GEOGRAPHIC RANGE COMPARED WITH ESTIMATED BODY MASS FOR THESE STEM PRIMATES

C. D. Pilbro
1780 East University Avenue, Anthropology Department, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New Mexico 88003, USA
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     Plesiadapiformes (possible stem-primates) proliferated around the world during the Paleocene-Eocene. Geographic range has a strong effect on extant primate species. Dispersal can be estimated for plesiadapiformes by using fossil localities. Estimates suggest a positive correlation between geographic range and generic diversity at the clade-level for larger plesiadapiforms (ex. plesiadapids r= .764, n= 12, p= .004). However, there is no correlation in smaller plesiadapiforms (i.e. paromomyids, picrodontids, palaechtonids, and microsyopids). Plesiadapiformes were a highly diverse order with >9 families and >150 genera. These basal primates varied in size from small, mouse-like species (7 gram Micromomys vossae) to that of cat-sized species (3,055 gram Plesiadapis cookei). To better understand plesiadapiform paleogeographic-dispersal, it is necessary to have an extant, analogous species to compare them to. This study will look at a number of living species: metatherian phalangeriformes (Trichosurus vulpecula, Didelphis orientalis, and Petaurus breviceps), rodents (Sciurus species), dermoptera (Galeopterus variegatus), and prosimians (Microcebus species). New correlations (comparing m1 area body mass and microwear dietary types) provide insights into dispersal regression models that failed to correlate between range and fossil genus biodiversity. This data suggests that small plesiadapiforms’ geographic dispersal was highly controlled by size and diet. Plesiadapiform groups that showed no correlation (ex. paromomyids r= .292, n= 27, p= .139) now show a positive correlation between body mass, diet type, and paleogeographic-dispersal (r= .690, n= 9, p= .05).