Application of outline analysis on fossil and modern specimens of Apodemus

Document Type : Research articles


1 Ferdowsi UNiversity of Mashhad

2 -


Wood mice of the genus Apodemus are widespread in temperate areas of the Palaearctic
region. Four species A. hyrcanicus, A. flavicollis, A. witherbyi, A. avicennicus and A. uralensis
were reported for Iran. The shape variation among three species of the genus Apodemus
(A. witherbyi, A. hyrcanicus, A. uralensis) and a subfossil specimens from Kordestan (Kani
Mikaiil cave) dated to 6000-4800 cal. BC, were investigated using outline-based geometric
morphometrics of the second lower molar. In a second step, morphological differences
among four populations of Iranian wood mice belonging to A. witherbyi were studied by
the same method. The results indicated that subfossil specimens from Kani Mikaiil
belong to A. witherbyi. The discriminant analysis also shows that A. witherbyi of East
Azerbaijan was separated from populations of Tehran, Khorasan and Gorgan, based on
variations in the shapes of the second lower molar. Moreover, results of clustering
analysis show that those fossil specimens which belong to A. witherbyi are ancestral and
close to the population of East Azerbaijan.