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Rethinking Primate Origins

Rethinking Primate Origins,10.1126/science.184.4135.436,Science,Matt Cartmill

Rethinking Primate Origins   (Citations: 95)
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Journal: Science , vol. 184, no. 4135, pp. 436-443, 1974
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    • ...Primatologists have long recognized the formative role of vision in the evolutionary history of the order Primates (Cartmill 1970, 1972, 1974, 1994; Collins 1921; Elliot-Smith 1927; Kirk 2003; Kirk and Kay 2004; Le Gros Clark 1960; Martin 1990; Napier and Napier 1967; Ross 1995, 1996)...

    Denitsa G. Savakovaet al. Influence of Orbit Size on Aspects of the Tarsier Postorbital Septum

    • ...In morphological studies, several authors assumed that orbit convergence, i. e. the orbit orientation in skulls, is associated with the degree of the binocular field overlap [23-25]...
    • ...It is likely that changes in orbit position indicate changes in eye position and in addition, several authors assumed that orbit convergence is associated with the degree of the binocular field overlap [23-25]...

    Christoph Kulemeyeret al. Functional morphology and integration of corvid skulls – a 3D geometri...

    • ... The locomotor demands of this unique niche help to explain the combination of anatomical features shared by all lemurs, lorises, tarsiers, monkeys, apes and human...

    William Knightet al. Simulating the fine-branch arboreal niche and exercising mice to elici...

    • ...This functional model is consistent with current ecological theories of primate origins, which propose that grasping extremities evolved in primates as an adaptation for arboreal locomotion on small-diameter branches (Cartmill, 1972, 1974b, 1985; Rasmussen, 1990; Sussman, 1991)...
    • ...phological features associated with major adaptive shifts (e.g., Cartmill, 1974b; Szalay and Decker, 1974)...

    E. Christopher Kirket al. Intrinsic hand proportions of euarchontans and other mammals: Implicat...

    • ...Divergent orbits are associated with panoramic (widely encompassing) visual fields with little overlap between each monocular field, whereas convergent orbits are associated with larger binocular (overlapping) visual fields [Cartmill, 1974; Allman, 1977; Ross, 2000; Heesy, 2004; fig. 1 ]. The relationship between orbit divergence-convergence and binocular visual field overlap in mammals is isometric (i.e., mammals with more convergent ...
    • ...For much of the 20th Century, features of primates, including specializations of the visual system, were explained as adaptations to inhabiting an arboreal niche [Jones, 1917; Collins, 1921; Smith, 1924; Le Gros Clark, 1959; reviewed in Cartmill, 1974]...
    • ...An alternative to the locomotion component of the ‘arboreal theory’ has been proposed by Cartmill [1972, 1974, 1992], Allman [1977, 1999], and Pettigrew [1978, 1986a] to explain the functional and adaptive advantages of orbit convergence and binocular visual field overlap...
    • ...Mammals. Arboreality is not unique to primates, and yet other groups of arboreal mammals, such as rodents, pilotans (sloths), and some hyraxes, have divergent orbits and panoramic visual fields [Cartmill, 1972, 1974, 1992; Heesy, 2003, 2004, 2005]...
    • ...Locomotion in a complex arboreal environment does not require large binocular and stereoscopic fields because many arboreal taxa with panoramic vision successfully move around in this environment [Cartmill, 1972, 1974, 1992]...
    • ...Nor does arboreal leaping require orbit convergence and expansive binocular visual fields because non-primate arboreal leapers, such as the rodent Sciurus, successfully traverse discontinuous arboreal substrates despite divergent orbits and limited binocular visual fields [Cartmill, 1972, 1974, 1992]...
    • ...In addition, enhanced binocularity increases the ability to gauge the distance to cryptic or evasive prey items without unnecessary head movements, which could alert a prey animal to the presence of the predator prior to ambush [Cartmill, 1974]...
    • ...Such studies are often cited as corroborating evidence for the nocturnal visual predation hypothesis for primate origins [Cartmill, 1972, 1974, 1992; Allman, 1977, 1999; Pettigrew, 1978, 1986a; but see Martin, 1999, and Martin and Katzir, 1999 for alternative interpretations for the functions of binocularity in birds]...
    • ...Differences between verticality, which is measured relative to the palate, and frontation, which is measured relative to the braincase, are probably based on differences in orientation between the face and braincase, the angle between which can differ among mammals [Cartmill, 1970, 1974; Ross and Ravosa, 1993; Ross et al., 2004; see Heesy, 2005]...
    • ...If the maximum range over which mammalian stereopsis is effective is as limited as those of amphibians and avians [ ! 1 m: Collett, 1977; McFadden, 1987, 1994], then this form of depth perception alone would be inadequate for leaping locomotion, as small-sized leaping strepsirhines often jump over 5 m and larger-sized strepsirhines leap distances greater than 10 m [Cartmill, 1974; Demes et al., 1991]...
    • ...As was noted by Cartmill [1974], numerous arboreal taxa with laterally directed orbits and low binocular visual field overlap exist, such as Sciurus , which are quite capable of rapid acrobatic arboreal locomotion including leaping...
    • ...The general observation that most non-primate eutherian mammals with high (strepsirhine-like) orbit convergence live in light-limited environments and are predatory is entirely consistent with the nocturnal visual predation hypothesis of primate origins [Cartmill, 1972, 1974, 1992; Allman, 1977; Pettigrew, 1978, 1986a]...
    • ...The observation that the earliest fossil primates for which complete or nearly complete cranial material are available exhibit orbit convergence values most similar to strepsirhine primates strongly supports this view [e.g., Cartmill, 1974; Ross, 1995; Ni et al., 2004]...

    Christopher P. Heesy. Ecomorphology of Orbit Orientation and the Adaptive Significance of Bi...

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