Convergence of Echolocation in the Common Shrew

According to previous behavioral and experimental studies, the common shrew (Sorex araneus) was indicated to echolocate by high-frequency twittering for close-range spatial orientation, which is a convergent ability observed in bats and whales. However, whether echolocation in the common shrew is convergent with bats and dolphins at the molecular level remains poorly understood. Here we collected CDS of 11 hearing-related genes and performed evolutionary analyses. We found a set of amino acid residues under strong convergent evolution shared among the common shrew and other echolocating mammals. Furthermore, Sorex araneus converged with echolocating bats in a gene tree based on the combined amino acid dataset of convergent shift. This study provides evidences of simple echolocation in Sorex araneus at molecular level and novel insights into the convergent evolution between the common shrew and sophisticated echolocators.
Convergence of echolocation in the common shrew
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