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Sexual Dimorphism revealed through Craniometrical Analysis in Macaca mulatta from Northern Pakistan

. Muhammad Ammar, Muhammad Tahir Waseem, Abdul Majid Khan, Ayesha Iqbal, Sania Zubaid, Arshia Naseer and Sehri Shahid


The Rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta) is a significant non-human primate species found in Pakistan's northern areas. Macaca mulatta has evolved to survive in a wide range of environmental conditions, depending upon the variety of food items, and is considered to be the most scattered primate on the earth. Craniometry, the fundamental morphometric approach, has been used to identify differences in the skulls of males and females of this species. Eight preserved skulls—four of each gender—were used in the current study and were acquired from the Zoological Museum at the University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.  A total of 48 skull variables (39 cranial and 9 mandibular) were analysed to find out the differences in male and female skulls. Most of the skull variables did not show any statistically significant difference except for a few variables. Results indicated that the males of Macaca mulatta have larger neurocranium, a slightly broader zygomatic, longer nasal bone, higher as well as longer facial bone, and wider ramus of the mandible as compared to the female’s skull. These craniometric variations may be a result of several factors including sexual dimorphism, hormonal influence, developmental processes, genetic, and environmental factors. This study provides the baseline data of craniometry and insights into sexual dimorphism in Macaca mulatta from Pakistan and may have implications for understanding the evolution and ecology of this species.


Key Words: Craniometric analysis, Macaca mulata, Sexual dimorphis, Skull morphology.


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