Categorical versus geometric morphometric approaches to characterising the evolution of morphological disparity in Osteostraci (Vertebrata, stem-Gnathostomata)

Humberto Ferron, Jenny Greenwood, Bradley Deline, Carlos Martínez Pérez, Hector Botella, Robert Sansom, Marcello Ruta & Philip Donoghue
Morphological variation (disparity) is almost invariably characterised by two non-mutually exclusive approaches: (i) quantitatively, through geometric morphometrics, and (ii) in terms of discrete, ‘cladistic’, or categorical characters. Uncertainty over the comparability of these approaches diminishes the potential to obtain nomothetic insights into the evolution of morphological disparity and the few benchmarking studies conducted so far show contrasting results. Here, we apply both approaches to characterising morphology in the stem-gnathostome clade Osteostraci in order to assess...
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