RE: [asa] Extinction/Extant

From: Dehler, Bernie <>
Date: Mon Oct 12 2009 - 16:46:55 EDT

Isn't the lungfish a great example of a "transitional form?" If not, why not (a fish with lungs... almost all fish have no lungs)?

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Alexanian, Moorad
Sent: Monday, October 12, 2009 11:55 AM
To: Keith Miller;
Subject: RE: [asa] Extinction/Extant

Thanks Keith for you kind and informative replies.

From: [] On Behalf Of Keith Miller []
Sent: Monday, October 12, 2009 2:42 PM
Subject: Re: [asa] Extinction/Extant

Moorad asked:

Completely silly question. It seems that we have a hard time to find transitional forms. In addition, all the evolutionary forms that resulted ultimately in humans seem to be extant. Does this make sense with regard to extinctions? [I am typing a hard manuscript and need to get away from it every so often. Excuse the flight of imagination or ignorance.]

I don't know where you are getting your information, but your statements above are completely erroneous. There are a huge number of transitional forms and the number is constantly and rapidly increasing with new discoveries. My chapter "Common Descent, Transitional Forms, and the Fossil Record" in the book "Perspectives on an Evolving Creation" lays out the basic framework and discusses a very few of the many fossil transitions. I am a paleontologist, and the fossil record alone is compelling evidence of common descent. Common descent provides a predictive framework and new discoveries have repeatedly confirmed that framework.

None of the fossil species that are part of the hominid branch of the tree are extant. We are it. We did not evolve from chimps or gorillas, or any living ape. We and living apes had a common ancestor perhaps 5 million years or more ago, but all of the fossil species on our line of descent are extinct.

Evolutionary transitions always go back in time down the the tree of life. Evolutionary transitions are never transitions between living species. You go down the tree, you do not jump from limb to limb.


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Received on Mon Oct 12 16:49:56 2009

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