Sunday, 22 July 2018

Fuzzy yellow bats reveal evolutionary relationships in Kenya



Date:  July 12, 2018
Source:  Field Museum

Summary:
DNA analysis of fuzzy yellow bats in Kenya revealed at least two new species unknown to science. It's important because Africa's biodiversity is often under-studied and poorly understood, even though bats play a crucial role in agriculture and public health.

After Halloween, people tend to forget about bats. But, for farmers, residents of Kenya, and scientists, bats are a part of everyday life. While North America has 44 species, Kenya, a country the size of Texas, has 110 bat species. Many of these species also contain subspecies and further divisions that can make the bat family tree look like a tangled mess. Researchers set out to cut the clutter by sorting the lineages of yellow house bats and in the process found two new species.


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