Difference between revisions of "Sloth evolution"

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<ref>[http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3847443/ Bartlett et al.: Oncolytic viruses as therapeutic cancer vaccines. Molecular Cancer 2013 12:103.]</ref>
 
<ref>[http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3847443/ Bartlett et al.: Oncolytic viruses as therapeutic cancer vaccines. Molecular Cancer 2013 12:103.]</ref>
 
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Two-toed and three-toed sloths subside on the same diet and belong to the same order, Pilosa. Phenotypically, they appear almost identical, with the main distinguishing feature being their number of toes. These similar features would make them appear very closely related. However, these two sloths do not belong to the same family. Besides the difference between the number of toes each species has, they also differ in the number of vertebrae in their spines and several other morphological features. By examining the traits of the sloths like locomotion and suspensory posture <ref>https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10914-011-9174-x<ref/>, it was discovered that the <i>Bradypus</i> and <i>Choloepus</i> species evolved through convergent evolution, which is where organisms with different ancestors or from different periods evolved similar phenotypical traits.
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Two-toed and three-toed sloths subside on the same diet and belong to the same order, Pilosa. Phenotypically, they appear almost identical, with the main distinguishing feature being their number of toes. These similar features would make them appear very closely related. However, these two sloths do not belong to the same family. Besides the difference between the number of toes each species has, they also differ in the number of vertebrae in their spines and several other morphological features. By examining the traits of the sloths like locomotion and suspensory posture <ref> Bob 2019. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10914-011-9174-x<ref/>, it was discovered that the <i>Bradypus</i> and <i>Choloepus</i> species evolved through convergent evolution, which is where organisms with different ancestors or from different periods evolved similar phenotypical traits.
 
[[Image: Slothphylogeny.jpg|thumb|400px|left| Fig. 2 Phylogeny of sloth evolution. https://slothconservation.com/about-the-sloth/overview/]]
 
[[Image: Slothphylogeny.jpg|thumb|400px|left| Fig. 2 Phylogeny of sloth evolution. https://slothconservation.com/about-the-sloth/overview/]]
  

Revision as of 13:36, 8 November 2019

Introduction

Despite their similar appearances, the rise of modern sloths is an interesting story of convergent evolution. There are two families of sloths, the two-toed sloth and the three-toed sloth, but there are six different species total. Two-toed sloths belong to the genus Choloepus and three-toed sloths belong to the genus Bradypus. Known for their slow movements and inefficient digestive systems, these creatures populate South American and Central American rainforests. Their diets mainly consist of leaves and fruits. All species of sloths spend their time in the rainforest canopy, spending between 15-20 hours a day sleeping, and only venturing to the floor in order to defecate. The forest floor is full of predators that sloths mainly avoid by hiding in the forest canopy. Their slow movements are due to their extremely slow metabolism, as they attempt to conserve energy by controlling movement speed.

The evolution and microbiota of sloths are unique due to the species' ancestors and the various fungi and bacteria that populate the coarse fur of the animal.

Fig. 1 Bradypus pygmaeus, a species of three-toed sloth, holding its baby. https://www.biographic.com/keeping-pygmy-sloths-afloat/















Genetics/Evolution

Sample citations: [1] [2]

Two-toed and three-toed sloths subside on the same diet and belong to the same order, Pilosa. Phenotypically, they appear almost identical, with the main distinguishing feature being their number of toes. These similar features would make them appear very closely related. However, these two sloths do not belong to the same family. Besides the difference between the number of toes each species has, they also differ in the number of vertebrae in their spines and several other morphological features. By examining the traits of the sloths like locomotion and suspensory posture <ref> Bob 2019. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10914-011-9174-xCite error: The opening <ref> tag is malformed or has a bad name, it was discovered that the Bradypus and Choloepus species evolved through convergent evolution, which is where organisms with different ancestors or from different periods evolved similar phenotypical traits.

Fig. 2 Phylogeny of sloth evolution. https://slothconservation.com/about-the-sloth/overview/

Links for citations: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10914-011-9174-x https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-019-0909-z

















Microbiome

Include some current research, with a second image.

Conclusion

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References


Edited by Cassandra Lis, student of Joan Slonczewski for BIOL 116 Information in Living Systems, 2019, Kenyon College.