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Author Topic:   Imported weed diversification supports macro-evolution
kuresu
Member (Idle past 2625 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 1 of 59 (298081)
03-25-2006 2:17 PM


In the early 1900s, three plant species native to Europe were brought to america. These three belong to the goatsbeard genus, Tragopogon, and are T. dubius, T. pratensis, and T. porrifolius. These weeds are now common in urban wastelands. In the 1950s, botanists discovered something absolutely amazing. There were two new species in Idaho and eastern Washington. Keep in mind, the original three are also there. The new ones are T. miscellus and T. mirus.
Those familiar with the Hardy-Weinberg equation know that it states five conditions that must be met for no evolution to occur.
1) An infinately large population
2) No preferential mating
3) No differential migration
4) No mutation
5) No natural selection
The goatsbeard is not native to America, but to Europe. It migrated here, even though it had no choice (I don't think many migrations that lead to speciation are truly by choice). Also, the weeds did not migrate back to Europe. The weeds did not have an infinately large population. Because of being placed into a new environment, new pressures would be placed on the weeds. The two new species are also not found in Europe.
i don't know about you, but this looks an awful lot like speciation and macro-evolution.
Reference: Biology, Sixth Edition. Campbell and Reece (Authors). Published by Benjamin Cummings. Copyright 2002.
this has been edited from the original
This message has been edited by kuresu, 03-25-2006 01:12 PM
{Topic promoted from one more piece of evidence supporting macro-evolution PNT. - Adminnemooseus}

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Faith 
Suspended Member (Idle past 1556 days)
Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001


Message 2 of 59 (298101)
03-25-2006 4:00 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by kuresu
03-25-2006 2:17 PM


i don't know about you, but this looks an awful lot like speciation and macro-evolution.
Well, to me it looks like "speciation" as usual, which is really just ordinary variation according to Mendelian principles of inheritance, the way we all differ from our parents: if a few of us started an isolated colony (which has happened unnumerable times in the history of the human race), we'd become an identifiable race, but still be humans.
You see it all the time in breeding programs. That's how you get new breeds of anything. In the wild it just takes something in the environment's favoring the proliferation of a new type.
Certainly nothing "macro" about it -- that would require it at the very least to stop being goatsbeard and become something else.

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nator
Member (Idle past 2281 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 3 of 59 (298102)
03-25-2006 4:06 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by Faith
03-25-2006 4:00 PM


quote:
Well, to me it looks like "speciation" as usual, which is really just ordinary variation according to Mendelian principles of inheritance, the way we all differ from our parents: if a few of us started an isolated colony (which has happened unnumerable times in the history of the human race), we'd become an identifiable race, but still be humans.
Uh, the different species of goatsbeard cannot interbreed.
They produce sterile hybrids.
So, it isn't like different "races" of humans at all. All the races of humans can interbreed quite successfully.
This message has been edited by schrafinator, 03-25-2006 04:06 PM

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mark24
Member (Idle past 5307 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 4 of 59 (298105)
03-25-2006 4:32 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by Faith
03-25-2006 4:00 PM


Faith,
I agree it's not macroevolution, but speciation is not "just ordinary variation according to Mendelian principles of inheritance". The plants can no longer interbreed. Nowt to do with races or "varieties" of the same species.
Mark

There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those that understand binary, & those that don't

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kuresu
Member (Idle past 2625 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 5 of 59 (298106)
03-25-2006 4:32 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by Faith
03-25-2006 4:00 PM


you apparently don't understand the definition of macro-evolution. According to the same source I puuled that information, it is: evolutionary change on a grand scale, encompassing the origin of new taxonomic gprous, evolutionary trends, adaptive radiation, and mass extinction. The biggest difference between it and micro-evolution is the amount of time needed. Like the next poster says, these new species do not interbreed and produce fertile offspring. They are new to biology and this earth.
By the way, you do know that there is no biological basis for race, right.
The other false assumption you have about macro-evolution is that it regquires a species to stop being that species entirely. Which suggests you do not understand the evolutionary process. What you used to disprove this being macro is what is actually in support of macro, except the race part. Oh, and Mednellian inheritance, thanks to Hardy and Weinberg, makes evolution possible
Evolution, such as macro, happens on a population scale. A single organism becoming a different one will die off, and that much is true. The thing is, one mutation does not reproductively isolate that organism from breeding with the others. The mutation gets passed on. In the case of the plants, they ended up with double the normal chromosomes, effectively isolating them from the parent species. Plants are able to do this because they can breed with themselves, having both male and female parts and being capable of zsexual reproduction. Animals will not be able to do this.
Having double the normal chromosome makes you a different goatsbeard, and I bet you a million dollars that several millions of years later, goatsbeard will be something different.

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Replies to this message:
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 Message 8 by Faith, posted 03-25-2006 5:01 PM kuresu has replied

  
mark24
Member (Idle past 5307 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 6 of 59 (298108)
03-25-2006 4:43 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by kuresu
03-25-2006 4:32 PM


kuresu,
To paraphrase the definition of macroevolution given by Levinton in "Genetics, Paleontology & Macroevolution": Change that is indicative of placement in higher taxonomic ranks. In this case, your example does not meet the standard. I think you even have a problem shoe-horning it into your own preferred definition, it certainly isn't change on a grand scale.
The example you describe is good old common or garden microevolution that resulted in genetic isolation from the parent species. Speciation, to be sure, but speciation does not equal macroevolution.
Mark

There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those that understand binary, & those that don't

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kuresu
Member (Idle past 2625 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 7 of 59 (298109)
03-25-2006 4:57 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by mark24
03-25-2006 4:43 PM


Ah, but speciation is the first step towards macro-evolution, as predicted by ToE
Speciation is at the boundary between microevolution and macroevolution. Microevolution is a change over the generations in a populations's alle frequencies, mainly by genetic drift and natural selection. Speciation occurs when a population's genetic divergence from its ancestral population results in reproductive isolation. . . .Yet the cumulative change during millions of speciation episodes over vast tracts of time must account for macroevolution, the level of change that is evident over the time scale of the fossil record.
Now then, coming from a college biology book that has as one of its central themes evolution, that's pretty convicing evidence.

All a man's knowledge comes from his experiences

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Faith 
Suspended Member (Idle past 1556 days)
Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001


Message 8 of 59 (298110)
03-25-2006 5:01 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by kuresu
03-25-2006 4:32 PM


It aint that I don't understand, kuresu, it's that I don't accept the standard definitions, which are in the business of defining everything in evolutionist terms. I don't believe that inability to breed is any kind of definition of a new species in the macro sense, that's just an arbitrary meaningless marker of a variation that has deviated far from the parent population.
All that has occurred in this weed is everyday variation. And yes, it may be true that I don't understand how this particular weed does it, but Mendel worked with plants and nothing he said implies macro E.
Certainly you've got "a different goatsbeard," certainly, but it is still a goatsbeard, the same way a Great Dane is a different dog from a chihuahua and yet both are dogs.
I use "race" in the ordinary sense of the term. There are recognizable groups of people just as there are recognizable individuals, with peculiar traits that differentiate them from other groups, because they blend the traits of their limited group of ancestors. It's a perfectly useful concept.
This message has been edited by Faith, 03-25-2006 05:03 PM

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kuresu
Member (Idle past 2625 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 9 of 59 (298113)
03-25-2006 5:08 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Faith
03-25-2006 5:01 PM


The only difference between Great Danes and Chihuahaua are which genes are expressed. The only difference between white, black, asian, indian, whatever is that there are varying amounts of melantonin (I think that's the skin color pigment) in these "races". They are not different kinds or species.
If you don't accept the standard definitions, it would be pointless to debate with you because then all you have to say is
"I don't believe that, and since my definition is true you can't prove anything to me becasue I'll just change it so thay you'll never be right so that I can believe what I want and not accept the logical outcome of events"
how can you argue with that?

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Coragyps
Member (Idle past 846 days)
Posts: 5553
From: Snyder, Texas, USA
Joined: 11-12-2002


Message 10 of 59 (298115)
03-25-2006 5:14 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Faith
03-25-2006 5:01 PM


you've got "a different goatsbeard," certainly, but it is still a goatsbeard, the same way a Great Dane is a different dog from a chihuahua and yet both are dogs.
And in the same way that a human is a different primate than a chimp or a macaque.
That's pretty amazing that goatsbeard is that recently introduced. The dang things made up about 20% of my back yard's vegetation when I lived in Oklahoma.

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Faith 
Suspended Member (Idle past 1556 days)
Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001


Message 11 of 59 (298119)
03-25-2006 5:32 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by kuresu
03-25-2006 5:08 PM


The only difference between Great Danes and Chihuahaua are which genes are expressed. The only difference between white, black, asian, indian, whatever is that there are varying amounts of melantonin (I think that's the skin color pigment) in these "races". They are not different kinds or species.
Um. There's a lot more difference in the races than just melatonin, all kinds of genetic differences, and why not, there are differences between parents and children, so how much more between groups that have been isolated for centuries and developed their own gene pool. It's exactly the same as between Great Danes and chihuahuas, that is, as you put it, "which genes are expressed." But it's more than that, because in any breed or race very often many genes of the species are simply no longer present at all.
If you don't accept the standard definitions, it would be pointless to debate with you because then all you have to say is
"I don't believe that, and since my definition is true you can't prove anything to me becasue I'll just change it so thay you'll never be right so that I can believe what I want and not accept the logical outcome of events"
Nice straw man there. Definitional differences are the sign of a paradigm clash. Not accepting the definitions means trying to explain one's different viewpoint but in the end it often does mean that the evo-creo debate simply founders on that issue. Can't be helped.

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Belfry
Member (Idle past 5197 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 12 of 59 (298125)
03-25-2006 7:12 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by kuresu
03-25-2006 5:08 PM


Breeds, speciation, and macroevolution
kuresu writes:
The only difference between Great Danes and Chihuahaua are which genes are expressed.
I don't think this is strictly true. Recent studies into the dog genome have found that the purebred lineages are genetically distinct from each other to a remarkable degree - with insertions, deletions, and sundry mutations accumulating easily in the isolated, inbred populations. The genetic differentiation between some dog breeds were found to be much greater than between isolated human populations on different continents, which is remarkable considering that most breeds have been created in the last 400 years or so. See this Parker et al. (2004) article in Science (link gets you the abstract, full text by subscription only - or see this NCBI article which talks about it).
Some people argue (and I'm inclined to agree) that Chihuahuas and great danes are anatomically incompatible enough that they would be reproductively isolated as "wild" populations, and could be thought of as different species.
More directly to the topic, the definition of "macroevolution" has been a source of much goalpost-shifting from the creationist side. Since speciation has been undeniably observed both in the lab and in the wild, the more experienced creationists no longer consider "mere speciation" to qualify as a macroevolutionary change, which many insist is somehow impossible. I say this to help explain Faith's reaction to your very fine OP.
This message has been edited by Belfry, 03-25-2006 07:13 PM

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mark24
Member (Idle past 5307 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 13 of 59 (298128)
03-25-2006 7:49 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by kuresu
03-25-2006 4:57 PM


kurusu,
Ah, but speciation is the first step towards macro-evolution, as predicted by ToE
But it still ain't macro.
Now then, coming from a college biology book that has as one of its central themes evolution, that's pretty convicing evidence.
Even this doesn't include speciation as being macroevolution.
I suppose I should have been unlazy enough to give the full definition rather than the one from memory:
(Levinton 1983) "The sum of those processes that explain the character-state transitions that diagnose evolutionary differences of major taxonomic rank".
But even the older & less accurate "evolution above the species level" definition doesn't allow Goatsbeard's speciation entry into the macroevolutionary fold.
The term "macroevolution" was always intended to mean something akin to large-scale evolutionary change, so a definition that reflects that is more efficacious & honest than one that includes "mere" reproductive isolation (ie speciation).
Don't get me wrong, kurusu, it's wonderful example of speciation, just not macroevolution.
Mark
This message has been edited by mark24, 03-25-2006 07:51 PM

There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those that understand binary, & those that don't

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mark24
Member (Idle past 5307 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 14 of 59 (298129)
03-25-2006 7:59 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Belfry
03-25-2006 7:12 PM


Re: Breeds, speciation, and macroevolution
Belfry,
Some people argue (and I'm inclined to agree) that Chihuahuas and great danes are anatomically incompatible enough that they would be reproductively isolated as "wild" populations, and could be thought of as different species.
I'm not inclined to agree. Chihuahua & Great Dane genes are capable of gene flow, it might take a generation or two to get a Great Dane to breed with a smaller variety, & a Chihuahua with a larger & so on, but eventually, a Great Dane gene can easily get into a Chihuahua population & vice versa.
If individuals in a population can't directly interbreed, but can still pass on genes to decendents of those individuals, then under the biological species concept they are still a "good" species.
Mark

There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those that understand binary, & those that don't

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mark24
Member (Idle past 5307 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 15 of 59 (298130)
03-25-2006 8:10 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by Faith
03-25-2006 5:32 PM


Faith,
Um. There's a lot more difference in the races than just melatonin
Yes there is, but that's not the point. There are more differences within supposed races, than between them. Think about it. What that means is that in order to maintain "races" we are forced cherry pick certain traits & attribute them to "races", whilst ignoring the rest of the data we have that actually contradicts the notion. No way to objectively define human groups.
Mark

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Replies to this message:
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