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Type of publication: Journal Article
Type of document: Full Paper

Year: 2007

Authors: Suchentrunk, F; Flux, JEC; Flux, MM; Ben Stimen, H

Title: Multivariate discrimination between East African cape hares (Lepus capensis) and savanna hares (L-victoriae) based on occipital bone shape.

Source: Mamm Biol (72), 6 372-383.

Authors Vetmeduni Vienna:

Suchentrunk Franz

Vetmed Research Units
Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology

In East Africa, cape hares (Lepus capensis) and savanna hares (L. victoriae) took much alike where their ranges overlap. Earlier studies suggested discrimination between the two species by several skull traits, but did not present morphometric statisitics. Our present. discriminant analysis based on seven metric variables of the occipital bone related to skull Length (condylobasal Length) resulted in a high (95.1%) overall probability of correct separation of the two species. White all cape hares were classified correctly, correct classification was a bit tower in savanna hares (88.2%). A principal components analysis of the same variables confirmed the shape difference for the two species. Both region and sex-specific variation in the shape of the studied occipital bone complex was found in savanna hares but not in cape hares. The somewhat reduced level of correct identification of savanna hares might be due to a tendency for higher shape variation. Application of our discriminant analysis to other regions in East Africa is discussed. (c) 2007 Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Saugetierkunde. Published by Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

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