Re: The meaning of "convergence" in paleo.
Pat Dooley (firstname.lastname@example.org)
19 Dec 1994 00:10:25 -0500
In article <1994Dec17.email@example.com>,
firstname.lastname@example.org (Phillip Bigelow) writes:
CONVERGENCE is defined as characteristics of organisms that are similar
in structure **and function**, but have arisen separately in different
groups of animals. Convergent characteristics are common in groups that
become adapted to a **similar habitat** or way of life.
Well, you got that one right. But it is not restricted to a single
instance in time. It is perfectly valid to cite the principle when
discussing evolution at any time. The AAH is not claiming that
humans are aquatic NOW, (although they are still far more
acquatic than any other ape). It claims that some unaccounted
for features of our evolution have remained from a distant past
and that the only other places where you find those features is
amongst aquatic or semi-aquatic mammals. Other odd features,
such as the propensity for our palms to sweat when we
are under stress can be related to the characteristics of
even more distant arboreal ancestors.