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List of examples of evolution


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#1    Magicjax

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 11:03 PM

I just thought we could start a list rather then a discussion. A list of things that basically say. "Here are examples and discoveries that support the existence of evolution". For the record I'm not sure what the proper branch of evolution I'm reffering to here is called but it's the kind of evolution that's most discussed in this section of UM. You know, the natural selection, living creatures slowly changing over time, having common ancestors with chimpanzees, etc…

The reason I thought this might be a good idea is so we can share reasons why we do believe that evolution does exist and share examples of why. What convinced us that this discovery about our world is accurate and worth believing to be a sound discovery. A way of saying these are some of the examples that has convinced me that evolution does and has taken place with living things on this planet.

Here's a couple that come to mind right off the bat for me.

About 17% of the human population is left-handed. The same is true of chimpanzees and gorillas.

Whales have all the bones of a hand including fingers in their flippers.

A rodent that lives in a hot climate such as a desert has a light colored underside to combats heat. A same species in a cooler climate will have a darker belly.

Edited by Magicjax, 16 March 2012 - 11:09 PM.

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#2    Lion6969

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 11:20 PM

Is it true that the Theory of evolution says that evolutionary mechanisms kick in when species face certain natural and environmental pressures in order to survive?


#3    Magicjax

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 11:23 PM

There are enough discussions about evolution here on UM that answer that question. I really hope this will be more of a list of examples of things that back the evolution theory (and please, let's not crowd this with another discussion about the definition of scientific theory again. :) ).

But the answer is yes. But it's much more complexed then that. How I understand it is this. Sticking with my rodent example in the OP. Imagine the rodent had a litter of 3. One of which has a lighter colored underside and it gave an advantage in the new hotter climate (or the climate there in became hotter over time). This off spring has this advantage over the other two. As a result it'll likely be healthier. Which gives it a better chance to create its own off springs. This trait will likely be passed on to it's off spring. The process continues. Eventually a large portion if the population of the species has this trait. I know that's very simplified but that's one of the processes I understand to occur. And it's why i added to the list.

Edited by Magicjax, 16 March 2012 - 11:36 PM.

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#4    None of the above

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 11:45 PM

OP, you have to realise that the reason creationists and other fact deniers don't already have this information is deliberate. They aren't just missing the facts, they are not looking at the evidence from a logical or scientific perspective. No evidence would change their mind because their faith based perspective isn't underpinned by any evidence in the first place.

For any creationist that wants to de-bunk the total fallacy that is creationism, it's a simple as this:

Let me google that for you

So ask yourself why they don't use this method as a starting point for checking the facts of evolution?

Our understanding of evolutionary biology, genetics, paleontology, geology and other sciences have combined to give us a remarkable and comprehensive understanding of life and our place in the universe.
For me and many people this is possibly the greatest achievement that mankind has ever made.

Edited by Atlantia, 17 March 2012 - 12:08 AM.


#5    Parsip

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 02:30 AM

I think you confuse natural selection with evolution. A very common mistake, it seems. Not that I'm a creationist (or evolutionist).


#6    Englishgent

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 03:33 AM

View PostParsip, on 17 March 2012 - 02:30 AM, said:

I think you confuse natural selection with evolution. A very common mistake, it seems. Not that I'm a creationist (or evolutionist).

I always thought that natural selection was the cause for the evolution of species, but maybe I am mistaken? :unsure2:


#7    Odin11

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 05:43 AM

View PostEnglishgent, on 17 March 2012 - 03:33 AM, said:

I always thought that natural selection was the cause for the evolution of species, but maybe I am mistaken? :unsure2:


You're not.

"If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities." -Voltaire

Geology shows that fossils are of different ages. Paleontology shows a fossil sequence, the list of species represented changes through time. Taxonomy shows biological relationships among species. Evolution is the explanation that threads it all together. Creationism is the practice of squeezing one's eyes shut and wailing "Does not!" ~Author Unknown

#8    Meiliken

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 11:49 AM

Our almost unuseable muscles in our ears, that in ancient times moved like a dog or cats to determine sound location.  Our wisdom teeth that used to be what we needed to chew more vegetable matter.  Our canines that we needed to aid in the intake of animal flesh.  Our spleen which was used to digest the amount of vegetable matter we ate which is even now slowly vanishing out of the human race(some are born without it).  Our tails that curl into our body which we no longer need.  The dormant webbing in our fingers and toes that randomly and rarely come out.  The muscles that make our noses move to help determine the direction of scent in our ancient ancestors.  The second sideways eyelids we have that used to help shield our eyes from debree, but is all but gone now.  The goosebumps we get when cold or angry that was used to make our ancestors look bigger causing our hairs to stand on end, similar to a cat or a dog.  The dormant coming out at times causing people to be fully covered in fur.  All the cancers and diseases being dormant in our DNA from our ancestors contracting them and therefore being part of our evolution, that wait for a catalyst to come out.  Those were just off the top of my head, but I think I got almost all of them.

Oh yeah, and the mutation of lactose tolerancy.  People are naturally lactose intolerant, tolerancy is a mutation.

Hopefully this helps in getting this thread back to what the OP intended it to be.

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#9    Cybele

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 01:49 PM

Cats and dolphins have inactivated genes which code for "sweet" taste receptors. They don't taste things as sweet and don't prefer sugars because their diets are made up entirely of meat.

Meiliken, I think you meant to say the appendix, not the spleen.

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#10    CommunitarianKevin

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 04:33 PM

Whales have pelvic bones.

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#11    CommunitarianKevin

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 04:40 PM

Lenski's experiment

http://en.wikipedia....tion_experiment

By the way this experiment disproves Behe's famed "irreducible complexity" which states some structures are too complex to evolved naturally. This experiment supports the fact that it can happen. And this experiment is 100% observable.

Edited by HuttonEtAl, 17 March 2012 - 05:23 PM.

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#12    None of the above

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 06:00 PM

Lets all bear in mind that 'creationism' is only a minority view held by a few Christian, Muslim fundamentalists etc.
If it wasn't for the fact that the centre of fundamentalist Christianity happens to be the vocal 'bible belt' in the USA, creationism would get very little attention beyond it's extremist believers.

Let's not forget that most mainstream Christian faiths accept Evolutionary biology verbatim and simply 'work it into' their belief system, usually by making evolution a tool of creation. As for that matter do most other religions.

Charles Darwin to receive apology from the Church of England for rejecting evolution.

Creationists would like to pretend that somehow they represent Christianity as a whole and the argument is simply 'Christains/Creationists' versus godless atheists.
It's just not true.
The truth is that even amongst Christians, creationists are in the decline.

It's just not worth debating.

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Edited by Atlantia, 17 March 2012 - 06:06 PM.


#13    CommunitarianKevin

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 06:34 PM

View PostAtlantia, on 17 March 2012 - 06:00 PM, said:

Lets all bear in mind that 'creationism' is only a minority view held by a few Christian, Muslim fundamentalists etc.
If it wasn't for the fact that the centre of fundamentalist Christianity happens to be the vocal 'bible belt' in the USA, creationism would get very little attention beyond it's extremist believers.

Let's not forget that most mainstream Christian faiths accept Evolutionary biology verbatim and simply 'work it into' their belief system, usually by making evolution a tool of creation. As for that matter do most other religions.

Charles Darwin to receive apology from the Church of England for rejecting evolution.

Creationists would like to pretend that somehow they represent Christianity as a whole and the argument is simply 'Christains/Creationists' versus godless atheists.
It's just not true.
The truth is that even amongst Christians, creationists are in the decline.

It's just not worth debating.

We all know this, or most of us do, but if someone wants to list examples or talk about it let them do so. I have learned that probably the majority of people that accept evolution do not properly understand it. Maybe someone can learn something or get questions answered in this thread.

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#14    None of the above

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 06:55 PM

View PostHuttonEtAl, on 17 March 2012 - 06:34 PM, said:

We all know this, or most of us do, but if someone wants to list examples or talk about it let them do so. I have learned that probably the majority of people that accept evolution do not properly understand it. Maybe someone can learn something or get questions answered in this thread.

OK I'll play.
As an example of 'evolution' I'd like to cite the fact that a belief in 'literal creationism' is now a view held by a diminishing minority of people. In fact, creationists are a minority, even amongst Christians! Sounds like natural selection and survival of the fittest at work to me ;)

Seriously though, examples of evolution would be every living creature.
Evidence of the processes of evolution?
Wow, where do you start?
Normally 'creationists' want transitional fossils so we can start there. The Wiki page is quite fun.


#15    Neognosis

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 06:56 PM

Quote

Is it true that the Theory of evolution says that evolutionary mechanisms kick in when species face certain natural and environmental pressures in order to survive?


No.

Random mutations happen at a relatively constant rate. This rate varies by species. Environmental pressures do not cause more mutations. They may only present a situation in which a random mutation might provide an advantage.





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