Wednesday, August 13, 2014

My Year of Darwin: 8/12/2014 accumulation of small changes

 Charles Darwin

"May not those naturalists who, knowing far less of the laws of inheritance than does the breeder, and knowing no more than he does of the intermediate linking in the long lines of descent, yet admit that many of our domestic rates have descended from the same parents - may they not learn a lesson of caution, when they deride the idea of species in a state of nature being lineal descendants of other species?" Charles Darwin, Origin of Species

Most of the breeders of domestic plants and animals that Darwin interviewed did not think that the different breeds came from a single ancestor. So, for example, hounds come a different species than sheep dogs. Darwin uses pigeons, page after page, to show that this view is false. He is using domestic species to show that great differences can accumulate through time in different descendants with a common ancestor to show this is possible in the wild.  

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