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Holocene small rodents in Northeastern Rio Grande do Sul: describing communities and their responses to environmental changes

Grant number: 14/19126-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2015
Effective date (End): November 30, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Alexandre Reis Percequillo
Grantee:Paulo Ricardo de Oliveira Roth
Host Institution: Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:09/16009-1 - Systematics, evolution and diversification of the subfamily Sigmodontinae in South America: the tribe Oryzomyini, AP.JP
Associated scholarship(s):16/20693-9 - Holocenic small rodents of northeastern Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil: Diversity changes through time and paleo-environmental reconstruction, BE.EP.DD


The preservation of small vertebrates as subfossils or fossils is extremely rare, because it is necessary that chemical, physical, geological and biological factors to occur to avoid destruction of bones and teeth by the process of decomposition and weathering. Although rare, testimonies of such fauna are found with some frequency in excavations in rock shelters or caves, representing windows to past faunas and their habitats, since many species of small mammals have different environmental requirements and different species occupy very specific niches. The identification of species in past communities also favors the understanding the environmental and climatic history of a region. The availability of remnants of ancient communities also is a unique opportunity to, through morphological analysis, investigate the responses of populations to environmental and climate changes of the past to understand the present distribution pattern of the species. Furthermore, when the remnants are not completely mineralized, there is extraordinary opportunity we access genetic information to investigate phylogenetic relationships with population or species recents. I sampled 13,617 bones post-cranial (whole and fragmented) skulls and 1,484 parts and teeth of small rodents obtained at two archaeological sites in northeastern RS, whose ages range from 12,430 years before present until a few decades. Among this sample were identified 24 taxon, among which two are locally extinct (Kunsia sp. and Pseudoryzomys simplex) and one, has no recent representatives (Dicolpomys fossor). Based on these specimes, I aim to recognize the diversity of small rodents in different periods of the Holocene through the identification of taxa supported by descriptive analysis and abundance estimatives. Subsequently, we will investigate whether climate changes affected the diversity of species of small rodents and the cranio-dental morphology and geographical distribution of Cavia sp., Holochilus brasiliensis and Pseudoryzomys simplex because these taxons are relativity common in the sample. For this, we will employ geometric morphometrics and phylogenetic techniques comparing ancient DNA sequences with homologous sequences of representatives of current populations. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
DALAPICOLLA, JERONYMO; DE OLIVEIRA ROTH, PAULO RICARDO; PERCEQUILLO, ALEXANDRE REIS. First record of albinism in spiny rats of genus Proechimys (Rodentia: Echimyidae) from Western Amazon. MAMMALIA, v. 84, n. 6, p. 605-609, . (16/20055-2, 09/16009-1, 15/02853-6, 14/19126-7, 16/20693-9)
MANCINI, MATHEUS C. S.; ROTH, PAULO RICARDO O.; BRENNAND, PAMELA G. G.; RUIZ-ESPARZA AGUILAR, JUAN M.; ROCHA, PATRICIO A.. Tyto furcata (Tytonidae: Strigiformes) pellets: tools to access the richness of small mammals of a poorly known Caatinga area in northeast Brazil. MAMMALIA, v. 83, n. 4, p. 390-398, . (09/16009-1, 14/19126-7)
Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
ROTH, Paulo Ricardo de Oliveira. Holocenic small rodents from northeastern Rio Grande do Sul: Describing communities and yours answers to environmental changes. 2018. Doctoral Thesis - Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALA/BC) Piracicaba.

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