Owl's spiny rat

Owl's spiny rat, Carterodon sulcidens, is a rodent species from South America in the family Echimyidae. It is found in Brazil. It is the only species in the genus Carterodon. The Owl's spiny rat has evolved from a single species that has had morphologies within members of different geological areas. In turn, its characteristics have evolved from the factors of its environment, such as the heightened ability to dig in open grasslands during environmental change. [2]

Owl's spiny rat
Temporal range: Pleistocene to Recent
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Family: Echimyidae
Genus: Carterodon
Waterhouse, 1848
C. sulcidens
Binomial name
Carterodon sulcidens
(Lund, 1841)


The genus Carterodon is the sister group to the family Capromyidae (hutias). In turn, this clade shares evolutionary affinities with some genera of spiny rats belonging to the subfamily Euryzygomatomyinae.

Analyses of craniodental characters proposed that Carterodon may be associated with Clyomys and Euryzygomatomys.[3][4] However, molecular data suggest the polyphyly of this assemblage of fossorial genera.[5]

Cladogram showing the relationship of Carterodon
with Capromyidae and Euryzygomatomyinae.

  Trinomys (Atlantic spiny rats)


  Euryzygomatomys (guiaras)


  Carterodon (Owl's spiny rat)








  Capromys (Desmarest's hutia)

The cladogram has been reconstructed from mitochondrial and nuclear DNA characters.[6][7][8][9][10][5] According to this phylogenetic tree, the fossorial genera Carterodon, Clyomys, and Euryzygomatomys constitute a polyphyletic assemblage (red bar).


  1. ^ Reis, M. & Lacher, T. (2008). "Carterodon sulcidens". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2009.
  2. ^ Bezerra, Alexandra & Marinho-Filho, Jader & Carmignotto, Ana. (2011). A review of the distribution, morphology, and habit of the Owl’s Spiny Rat Carterodon sulcidens (Lund, 1841) (Rodentia: Echimyidae). Zoological studies. 50. 566-576.
  3. ^ Carvalho, Guilherme A. S.; Salles, Leandro O. (2004-12-01). "Relationships among extant and fossil echimyids (Rodentia: Hystricognathi)". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. 142 (4): 445–477. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.2004.00150.x. ISSN 0024-4082.
  4. ^ Candela, Adriana M.; Rasia, Luciano L. (2012-02-01). "Tooth morphology of Echimyidae (Rodentia, Caviomorpha): homology assessments, fossils, and evolution". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. 164 (2): 451–480. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.2011.00762.x. ISSN 0024-4082.
  5. ^ a b Fabre, Pierre-Henri; Upham, Nathan S.; Emmons, Louise H.; Justy, Fabienne; Leite, Yuri L. R.; Loss, Ana Carolina; Orlando, Ludovic; Tilak, Marie-Ka; Patterson, Bruce D.; Douzery, Emmanuel J. P. (2017-03-01). "Mitogenomic Phylogeny, Diversification, and Biogeography of South American Spiny Rats". Molecular Biology and Evolution. 34 (3): 613–633. doi:10.1093/molbev/msw261. ISSN 0737-4038. PMID 28025278.
  6. ^ Galewski, Thomas; Mauffrey, Jean-François; Leite, Yuri L. R.; Patton, James L.; Douzery, Emmanuel J. P. (2005). "Ecomorphological diversification among South American spiny rats (Rodentia; Echimyidae): a phylogenetic and chronological approach". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 34 (3): 601–615. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2004.11.015. PMID 15683932.
  7. ^ Upham, Nathan S.; Patterson, Bruce D. (2012). "Diversification and biogeography of the Neotropical caviomorph lineage Octodontoidea (Rodentia: Hystricognathi)". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 63 (2): 417–429. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2012.01.020. PMID 22327013.
  8. ^ Fabre, Pierre-Henri; Galewski, Thomas; Tilak, Marie-ka; Douzery, Emmanuel J. P. (2013-03-01). "Diversification of South American spiny rats (Echimyidae): a multigene phylogenetic approach". Zoologica Scripta. 42 (2): 117–134. doi:10.1111/j.1463-6409.2012.00572.x. ISSN 1463-6409. S2CID 83639441.
  9. ^ Fabre, Pierre-Henri; Vilstrup, Julia T.; Raghavan, Maanasa; Der Sarkissian, Clio; Willerslev, Eske; Douzery, Emmanuel J. P.; Orlando, Ludovic (2014-07-01). "Rodents of the Caribbean: origin and diversification of hutias unravelled by next-generation museomics". Biology Letters. 10 (7): 20140266. doi:10.1098/rsbl.2014.0266. ISSN 1744-9561. PMC 4126619. PMID 25115033.
  10. ^ Upham, Nathan S.; Patterson, Bruce D. (2015). "Evolution of Caviomorph rodents: a complete phylogeny and timetree for living genera". In Vassallo, Aldo Ivan; Antenucci, Daniel (eds.). Biology of caviomorph rodents: diversity and evolution. Buenos Aires: SAREM Series A, Mammalogical Research — Sociedad Argentina para el Estudio de los Mamíferos. pp. 63–120.