Re: [asa] Back to Darwin

From: D. F. Siemens, Jr. <>
Date: Mon Apr 07 2008 - 17:56:38 EDT

I note that the site has a number of related articles. I expect that the
studies cannot be shot down, but that the claim will be made that they
represent only microevolution. After all, the walking stick insects have
not become either crustaceans or myriapods.

Regarding JimA's note about devolution, it should apply mainly to
parasites, which depend on viable forms for most of their metabolic
needs. This is obvious in sacculina. Barnacles are an example of
free-living forms that have simplified the body. I suspect that there
will be more reports from genomics that elements are missing as more
creatures are analyzed. I recall that there is a gene missing in
hominoids that allows the synthesis of ascorbic acid. But I conceive of a
problem in classifying a gene that becomes quiescent at one stage and
gains a new utility later, whatever the mechanism involved.
Dave (ASA)

On Mon, 07 Apr 2008 15:13:18 -0400 Jack Haas <>
Lets see how long it takes to shoot this one down!

Darwin Was Right: Natural Selection Speeds Up Speciation

ScienceDaily (Apr. 6, 2008) — In the first experiment of its kind
conducted in nature, a University of British Columbia evolutionary
biologist has come up with strong evidence for one of Charles Darwin's
cornerstone ideas -- adaptation to the environment accelerates the
creation of new species.
"A single adaptive trait such as color could move a population towards
the process of forming a new species, but adaptation in many traits may
be required to actually complete the formation of an entirely new
species," says UBC post-doctoral fellow Patrik Nosil, whose study is just
published.* "The more ways a population can adapt to its unique
surroundings, the more likely it will ultimately diverge into a separate

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Received on Mon Apr 7 18:00:47 2008

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