Importance Of Primate Taxonomy

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Primate Taxonomy

Primate Taxonomy
Introduction This first lecture is designed to introduce the primate order in terms of its classification and to familiarise you with the animals so that the rest
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Preservation of generalised limb structure with primitive pentadactyly. 2. Enhancement of free mobility of the digits, especially of the pollux and hallux (both used for grasping). 3. Replacement of sharp, compressed claws by flat nails; development of very sensitive tactile pads on the digits. 4. Progressive shortening of the snout. 5. Elaboration of the visual apparatus, with the development of varying degrees of binocular vision. Orbits ringed with bone. 6. Reduction of the olfactory apparatus. 7. Loss of certain elements of the primitive mammalian dentition. Preservation of a simple molar cusp pattern. 8. Progressive expansion and elaboration of the brain, especially of the cerebral cortex. 9. Progressive and increasingly efficient development of gestational processes. Considering each of these features in …show more content…
This is a valid term when talking about fossil forms and is fine when talking about particular traits (where it means a trait that is found in an ancestral form which has been retained in a current form). It is not a particularly useful term to apply to a whole animal. What people generally mean when they talk about ‘primitive’ and ‘advanced’ extant primates is less or more like humans and that is an incorrect usage. Humans do indeed have some advanced features (features not found in their ancestors) such as large brains and feet adapted to habitual bipedalism, but then all extant species tend to have a few specialised features that set them apart from other species (specialised throat anatomy to allow extremely loud vocalisations in Indri, multi-chambered stomachs for leaf fermentation in Colobus to name but a few). To describe an animal as a whole as advanced requires some sort of subjective value judgement on some non-specific notion of importance of their specialised traits and it generally all boils down to, “if it's a feature that humans are proud of then it’s advanced”. Infraorders Table 3. The primate

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