Differences Between Pitheciidae And The Remaining Platyrrhines
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Opazo et al. (2006) conducted an analysis and found that among the six loci used in their study, two of them supported the hypothesis which suggests that the first split was between Pitheciidae and the remaining platyrrhines, which grouped Atelidae and Cebidae together (Chavez et al., 1999) and one of the loci supported the hypothesis of Ateliedae and Pitheciidae being sister group of the family Cebidae (Canavez et al., 1999). These results therefore indicate that there was an initial radiation in the early Miocene which separated the three families from one another. According to Opazo et al (2006), these separations occurred over a relatively short period of geological time. Also, several species of Ateles were represented and analysed in…show more content… 279). Generally speaking, these divergence times support the known New World monkey fossil record. Palaentological evidence thus far describes Doliochocebus as a fossil of cebine, in the clade that includes extant members of genus Saimiri (Szalay and Delson, 1979). Based on estimations of the origin of the subfamily Cebinae which was 18 million years ago, this fossil was in fact the stem of the subfamily. Also, Stirtonia was considered to be an alouattinin fossil (Szalay and Delson, 1979) and according to their results the split between Alouatta and the remaining members of the family occurred 16 million years ago (Opazo et al., 2006 p. 279), a result that also agrees with the fossil record. Furthermore, the fossil pitheciid Cebupithecia is one of the most complete skeletons of a fossil platirrhine and believes to be dated near the time of the most recent common ancestor of the total group. By using the molecular clock, the split between the lineage that eventually led to Callicebus and the lineage leading to the other pitheiid genera occurred after the divergence of Callicebus but before the divergence of Pithecia, Cacajao, and Chiropotes (Opazo et al,. 2006, p. 294).
Wildman et al. (2009) however, inferred that Pitheciidae is the sister taxon to the other two platyrrhine families, Cebidae and Ateliedae. Their data confidently supports this hypothesis and is