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Fly Now, Die Later: Life-History Correlates of Gliding and Flying in Mammals

Donna J. Holmes and Steven N. Austad
Journal of Mammalogy
Vol. 75, No. 1 (Feb., 1994), pp. 224-226
DOI: 10.2307/1382255
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1382255
Page Count: 3
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Fly Now, Die Later: Life-History Correlates of Gliding and Flying in Mammals
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Abstract

A recent study of seasonal influences on energetics in the southern flying squirrel, Glaucomys volans (Stapp, 1992, Journal of Mammalogy, 73:914-920), compares metabolic and life-history variables in gliding and nongliding arboreal sciurids and interprets them largely in the context of thermoregulatory constraints. We consider an alternative explanation for the "K-selected" traits of flying squirrels from evolutionary senescence theory and the comparative life-history literature. Comparative analyses reveal convincing evidence for the impact of mortality patterns on life histories of mammals and for gliding and flying as adaptations promoting the evolution of longevity.

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