Batscans: Lavia Frons
The specimen of Lavia frons shown here
was collected in October of 1912 by the AMNH Lang-Chapin Expedition
in Faradje, Congo. It is currently under study by Dr. Nancy Simmons
of the AMNH, who is including Lavia frons in her studies of evolutionary
relationships of bats. The CT scans of this specimen will be used
to study details of skeletal structure and to collect data for
phylogenetic analysis. Unlike traditional museum preparations,
CT scans allow scientists to see inside the skull without damaging
it, and to visualize the tiny, three-dimensional bones of the
wrists and ankles (which in bats are as small as grains of sand).
Studies of this and other CT scans of bat will allow Dr. Simmons
and her colleagues to view many structures for the first time,
and to use information on variation among species to help resolve
their evolutionary relationships.
If you cannot see the image below, please download the free
player for your system.