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Author Topic:   Transitional fossils not proof of evolution?
NosyNed
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Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 4 of 223 (291571)
03-02-2006 6:31 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Alasdair
03-02-2006 12:55 PM


Timing is everything.
The point that your friend forgot is the sequencing of the fossil evidence.
We don't have one "similar" fossil from 5,000 years ago. We have a rather disimilar fossil from 5 million years ago**. We have slightly less dissimlar fossils from 3 or so million years ago. We have somewhat similar fossils from 2 million years ago. We have pretty similar fossils from 1 million years ago.
We have very, very similar fossils from 180,000 years ago.
This is, of course, all piled on top of a much longer sequence of fossils that have an "arrow" in them too.
More later if needed.

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 127 of 223 (317414)
06-03-2006 11:44 PM
Reply to: Message 125 by Belfry
06-03-2006 6:20 PM


"Ape" ancestors
I think what pompuspom is referring to is the lack of fossils from the line leading to modern non human primates from after the split with our lineage.
I think he suspects a plot to move "ape" fossils into the line leading to Homo. He is confused enough about the facts that one can't be sure that is what is going on but that's my guess.
You are, of course, right about the definition of "ape" in one sense. But it should be clear that ppp is using the colloquial defintion of "non-human primate". Better be careful of terms here.

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 169 of 223 (333452)
07-19-2006 4:56 PM
Reply to: Message 167 by smegma
07-19-2006 3:35 PM


What is a transitional.
are there even transitional fossils that's been found?
Since you chose to ask this question it becomes apparent that you don't know very much about the science. Before one can properly answer this question you will have to tell us how you define a "transitional". What to you think one should look like. What would you want to be shown that you would count as a transitional?
It is rather possible that you understand evolutionary biology so poorly that you don't actually know what would constitute a transitional. You have simply read websites that make the assertion that there aren't any and you, knowling no better, belived what they told you.
So we can start helping you if you can help us understand just what your level of understanding and knowledge is.

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 175 of 223 (333528)
07-19-2006 8:26 PM
Reply to: Message 173 by smegma
07-19-2006 8:16 PM


Re: What is a transitional.
I presume by part "fish and part frog" you mean in a more generic way; with characteristics we currently assign to fish and some that we currently assign to amphibians. Correct?
that means everyone has their own version of what the definition of "transitional" is since you asked me how i define transitional(it's like me asking you how do you define good food or good music?)
No, there is a clear definition as used in biology. However, we find people come on here without knowing what one is and seem to have their own idiosyncratic definition. Your definition is, as far as it goes, possibly inline with a more precise biological definition.

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 178 of 223 (333531)
07-19-2006 8:34 PM
Reply to: Message 177 by smegma
07-19-2006 8:31 PM


Re: What is a transitional.
as a help you might read over this thread:
All species are transitional
some issues are dealt with there. I'm still looking for where some people posted a clearer defintion of a 'transitional'.
are you a scientist?
Do you want to wait for a practicing scientist to discuss this? Or are you willing to talk to some of us who have done a bit more reading in the area than you may have?
We do have a number of biologists posting here if that is what you want.
Do I understand what you definition of tranistional means?

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 Message 181 by smegma, posted 07-19-2006 8:40 PM NosyNed has replied

  
NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 179 of 223 (333532)
07-19-2006 8:36 PM
Reply to: Message 176 by jar
07-19-2006 8:27 PM


Re: on transitional
Jar, he did say "part". It isn't yet a clear enough definition to know if he has it wrong or not.
It is possible to take his definition as being at least not in contradiction to the correct understanding. Don't do what I do and jump the gun.

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 182 of 223 (333538)
07-19-2006 8:45 PM
Reply to: Message 181 by smegma
07-19-2006 8:40 PM


A scientist
No, I am not. Could you explain how that makes a difference to the nature of the arguments?
What it should do is make you want me to supply more back up than you would from an expert in a particular field. If one of our biologists gives you a definition or tells you what is done it makes sense to be more likely to take that at face value. If a non-expert gives you some information you should be more inclined to ask for support and an explanation.
I expect and welcome that.
ABE
However, that is all a bit of a red herring. We are trying to get a very clear picture of what you think a transitional should be.
Edited by NosyNed, : added a bit more commentary

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 183 of 223 (333540)
07-19-2006 8:53 PM
Reply to: Message 181 by smegma
07-19-2006 8:40 PM


Re: What is a transitional.
While we are at it here are a couple of other threads discussing transitionals:
"Archaeopteryx; bird or reptile, or both?"
The Definition and Description of a "Transitional"

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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 9007
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 189 of 223 (333549)
07-19-2006 9:46 PM
Reply to: Message 186 by smegma
07-19-2006 9:09 PM


That which has not evolved.
coelacanths are still around and they have not "evolved".200 coelacanths were caught many times in different parts of the world.
You making this statement as if it is relevant to something being (or being a representative) of a transitional shows one of the common misunderstandings.
You are a descendant of your grandfather and are different from him. The fact that he may still be around doesn't make you any less a decendent from him nor make him less a transitional form between your great, great grandfather and yourself.
If a population of amphibians split into a group which, over time, evolved into reptiles that doesn't say that the rest of the population couldn't have stayed as amphibians.
Fish are highly successful forms. The fact that there are environments where some fish might do well if they have some ability to survive out of water doesn't say that ALL the fish have to abandon the ocean.
Somewhere back there fish that were like the coelacanths took a turn toward the land. That doesn't mean that the entire population was in the same place and under the same environmental pressures.

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