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Multivariate Geographical Variation in the Wolf Canis lupus L.

Pierre Jolicoeur
Evolution
Vol. 13, No. 3 (Sep., 1959), pp. 283-299
DOI: 10.2307/2406106
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2406106
Page Count: 17
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Multivariate Geographical Variation in the Wolf Canis lupus L.
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Abstract

An analysis is made of pelage and skull variation in five hundred wolf specimens from northwestern Nearctic localities. Pale wolves are relatively more frequent toward the tundra. Males are 4% larger than females in linear skull dimensions. Northeastern specimens are shorter- but relatively broader-skulled than south-western ones. Multivariate biometrical differences between populations appear approximately proportional to geographical separation. This may express genetic differentiation through imperfect panmictia. But direct environmental influences may be involved. Formal taxonomic conclusions are postponed but it seems probable that far too many subspecific designations are now in use. Multivariate statistical techniques are very efficient for evolutionary comparisons with respect to complexes of characters.

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