we are at the beginning of a project in which we would aim to study changes
of head capsule shape across different orders of insects. Hence, we expect
to be dealing with a high amount of disparity within the head system.
We found, as one prerequisite of choosing landmarks, that they should 'not
switch positions relative to each other' (Zelditsch et al. 2012). Even
though such a switch might not actually occur in our future data set, we
are still wondering whether geometric morphometrics is an appropriate
method for the analysis of shape variation across a phylogenetically and
morphologically highly disparate sample (think of silverfish and beetles,
this is like comparing mandibles of baleen whales with those of macaques).
Of course we will use a landmark set where each landmark is morphologically
homologous across the taxon sample and can be reliably identified.
We would appreciate if you could share your opinions/thoughts on this topic
and indicate possible obstacles to expect and/or point us to important
literature that would be a must read here to start with.
Many thanks in advance,
Peter T. Rühr
Zoological Institute, Biocenter
University of Cologne
Zülpicher Straße 47b
MORPHMET may be accessed via its webpage at http://www.morphometrics.org
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