Event Title

Distribution and Paleobiology of Hibernation in Fossil Ground-dwelling Squirrels from the Great Plains, USA

Presenter Information

Randy Sanchez, Andrews University

Location

Buller Hall

Start Date

2-26-2016 2:30 PM

End Date

2-26-2016 4:00 PM

Description

Hibernation is a widespread phenomenon present across mammalian taxa, including the family of ground-dwelling squirrels Sciuridae. Prior work has shown that hibernation can be identified in the ever-growing incisors of these ground squirrels through visual analysis. In this study, we collected specimens, originating from the Great Plains, from the C.W. Hibbard collection at the University of Michigan to be analyzed for hibernation marks. Analysis suggested hibernation mark-like features in several ground squirrel incisors from the genera “Spermophilus”, Otospermophilus, and Urocitellus, ranging stratigraphically from the Pliocene to the Late Pleistocene and providing the oldest known hibernation record for ground squirrels.

Acknowledgments

Dr. H. Thomas Goodwin

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Feb 26th, 2:30 PM Feb 26th, 4:00 PM

Distribution and Paleobiology of Hibernation in Fossil Ground-dwelling Squirrels from the Great Plains, USA

Buller Hall

Hibernation is a widespread phenomenon present across mammalian taxa, including the family of ground-dwelling squirrels Sciuridae. Prior work has shown that hibernation can be identified in the ever-growing incisors of these ground squirrels through visual analysis. In this study, we collected specimens, originating from the Great Plains, from the C.W. Hibbard collection at the University of Michigan to be analyzed for hibernation marks. Analysis suggested hibernation mark-like features in several ground squirrel incisors from the genera “Spermophilus”, Otospermophilus, and Urocitellus, ranging stratigraphically from the Pliocene to the Late Pleistocene and providing the oldest known hibernation record for ground squirrels.