Phylogeny, Fossils, and Biogeography: The Evolutionary History of Superfamily Noctilionoidea (Chiroptera: Yangochiroptera)
Norberto P. Giannini and Paúl M. Velazco
The superfamily Noctilionoidea comprises more than 230 species in 68 genera and is one of the most ecologically diverse groups of mammals, as its species consume almost the entire dietary spectrum known for terrestrial mammals, including insectivorous, omnivorous, carnivorous, piscivorous, nectarivorous, hematopagous, and frugivorous species. Here we 1) revisit the relationships of the superfamily with other groups of bats, and the family-level phylogenetic relationships within the group; 2) review the historical biogeography of the superfamily on the basis of phylogenies and the fossil record of the constituent noctilionoid families; and 3) provide an overview of the ecology of members of noctilionoid families, which collectively compose the most inclusive outgroup to the Phyllostomidae. Finally, we interpret the historical and ecological grounds and evolutionary context from which the Phyllostomidae diversified.