Ciencia habilitada por datos de especímenes

Tanshi, I., B. C. Obitte, A. Monadjem, S. J. Rossiter, M. Fisher‐Phelps, and T. Kingston. 2022. Multiple dimensions of biodiversity in paleotropical hotspots reveal comparable bat diversity. Biotropica.

Bat species commonly comprise at least 50% of tropical mammalian assemblages, but Afrotropical bat faunas have been little studied leading to perceptions that they are depauperate. Here, we compare alpha taxonomic, functional, and phylogenetic diversity of insectivorous bats belonging to the narrow‐space foraging ensemble from a bat diversity hotspot in Nigeria to species‐rich sites in Indonesia and Malaysia, using previously published data. The Nigerian site is protected unlogged forests at Afi Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary and Cross River National Park. For comparison, we targeted similar unlogged forest sites in Southeast Asia: Indonesia—Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park Forest in Sumatra; and Kakenauwe Forest Reserve on Buton Island, Sulawesi; and another in Malaysia—Krau Wildlife Reserve. All sites were sampled using comparable methods, with an emphasis on harp traps that effectively capture the forest‐interior ensembles. We also compare regional beta diversity of bat assemblages in ecoregions using occurrence data (literature, unpublished records, and online natural history collections) from the Lower Guinean Forest and the Malay Peninsula. We demonstrate comparable alpha taxonomic, functional, and phylogenetic diversity of narrow‐space bats among sites in Nigeria and Indonesia, but greater diversity in Malaysia. Turnover and overall beta diversity of bats among ecoregions was comparable between the Lower Guinean Forest and the Malay Peninsula, but nestedness was higher in the latter. Our results reiterate the value of harp traps in generating bat survey data that allows equatable comparisons of “mist net avoiders” in the Paleotropical forest understory. Our findings have implications for regional and local bat conservation.

Sánchez, C. A., H. Li, K. L. Phelps, C. Zambrana-Torrelio, L.-F. Wang, P. Zhou, Z.-L. Shi, et al. 2022. A strategy to assess spillover risk of bat SARS-related coronaviruses in Southeast Asia. Nature Communications 13.

Emerging diseases caused by coronaviruses of likely bat origin (e.g., SARS, MERS, SADS, COVID-19) have disrupted global health and economies for two decades. Evidence suggests that some bat SARS-related coronaviruses (SARSr-CoVs) could infect people directly, and that their spillover is more frequent than previously recognized. Each zoonotic spillover of a novel virus represents an opportunity for evolutionary adaptation and further spread; therefore, quantifying the extent of this spillover may help target prevention programs. We derive current range distributions for known bat SARSr-CoV hosts and quantify their overlap with human populations. We then use probabilistic risk assessment and data on human-bat contact, human viral seroprevalence, and antibody duration to estimate that a median of 66,280 people (95% CI: 65,351–67,131) are infected with SARSr-CoVs annually in Southeast Asia. These data on the geography and scale of spillover can be used to target surveillance and prevention programs for potential future bat-CoV emergence. Coronaviruses may spill over from bats to humans. This study uses epidemiological data, species distribution models, and probabilistic risk assessment to map overlap among people and SARSr-CoV bat hosts and estimate how many people are infected with bat-origin SARSr-CoVs in Southeast Asia annually.

Cooper, N., A. L. Bond, J. L. Davis, R. Portela Miguez, L. Tomsett, and K. M. Helgen. 2019. Sex biases in bird and mammal natural history collections. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 286: 20192025.

Natural history specimens are widely used across ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation. Although biological sex may influence all of these areas, it is often overlooked in large-scale studies using museum specimens. If collections are biased towards one sex, studies may not be representativ…