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>Of course there is no reason why something has to be selected for
>by only one force. Both resource acquisition *and* predator escape
>may have been important. After all, predatoras though they may have,
>the ancestors of the various flying groups were also *small*, and thus
>rather susceptible to predation.


> >  A possible exception, megachiropteran
> > bats, feed on fruit which can only be reached by having access to trees (and
> > of course fruit did not exist until the Cretaceous).
>Neither do bats :-)

The point (as I assume you realize) was that the earlier proto-fliers could
not have had their eyes on a fruit diet!

>However, based on genetic phylogenies, I had thought that the hypothesis
>that megachiropterans had a separate origin from other bats had been

This is true - but as the earliest known fossil bat appears to be a
perfectly good microchiropteran I assume that we do not know how bats
evolved - the microchiropterans, with their echolocation (absent in most,
but not all, megachiropterans), seem more derived.  My point was that we do
not know  whether the first bats were fruit-eaters or carnivores.

>If I am right, this means that megachiropterans are secondarily

Only if the first bats were not frugivores - they could have been, I suppose.
Ronald I. Orenstein                           Phone: (905) 820-7886 (home)
International Wildlife Coalition              Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116 (home)
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