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(Science Daily)   Why so many beetle species and so few crocodiles? Because flying iridescent crocodiles would exceed the universe's coolness limit, that's why   (sciencedaily.com) divider line 18
    More: Obvious, evolutionary biology, universe, bark beetles, invasive species, PLoS Biology, crocodiles, scarab beetles, eukaryotes  
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1111 clicks; posted to Geek » on 28 Aug 2012 at 9:16 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-28 09:35:21 PM  
"In a 2009 study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Alfaro and his colleagues reported that mammals and many species of birds and fish are among evolution's "winners," while crocodiles, alligators and a reptile cousin of snakes and lizards known as the tuatara are among the "losers."

Funny...I encounter alligators and snakes every week when shooting wildlife (with camera), but "evolutionary losers" is not a phrase that comes to mind when I see them. Interesting perspective.
 
2012-08-28 09:41:07 PM  
Flying, iridescent crocs. How the fark am I supposed to get to sleep tonight? Goddammitsomuch
 
2012-08-28 10:21:56 PM  

somemoron: Flying, iridescent crocs. How the fark am I supposed to get to sleep tonight? Goddammitsomuch


Wouldn't those be dragons, or dragon like?
 
2012-08-28 10:36:14 PM  

miltonbabbitt: "In a 2009 study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Alfaro and his colleagues reported that mammals and many species of birds and fish are among evolution's "winners," while crocodiles, alligators and a reptile cousin of snakes and lizards known as the tuatara are among the "losers."

Funny...I encounter alligators and snakes every week when shooting wildlife (with camera), but "evolutionary losers" is not a phrase that comes to mind when I see them. Interesting perspective.


I wouldn't say they're losers, but they have disadvantages that make their existances more localized. There are mammals and birds almost all over the world in almost every climate, but reptiles can only exist where it's warm enough for them to exist.

Not losers, but definately disadvantaged (in the bigger scheme of things).
 
2012-08-28 10:38:00 PM  
Because crocodiles found a reasonably optimized configuration millions of years ago. There were very few evolutionary pressures to change it, and therefore most mutations did not offer a selective advantage over the rest of the population and were simply outbread.
 
2012-08-28 10:46:11 PM  

Nickninja: Because crocodiles found a reasonably optimized configuration millions of years ago. There were very few evolutionary pressures to change it, and therefore most mutations did not offer a selective advantage over the rest of the population and were simply outbread.


Bingo. Crocodilians are damn fine examples of "If it ain't broke, don't fix it".
 
2012-08-28 10:54:23 PM  
You know who else exceeded the universe's coolness limit?

t0.gstatic.com
 
2012-08-28 11:06:47 PM  

loonatic112358: somemoron: Flying, iridescent crocs. How the fark am I supposed to get to sleep tonight? Goddammitsomuch

Wouldn't those be dragons, or dragon like?


At least a dragon is (1) HUGE and therefore not likely to sneak up on you and (2) burns you to a crisp in seconds. Ever see a croc eat? They creep up on you when you think it is safe. Then they grab whatever body part they can and spin until it rips off. Then they eat it in one gulp and come back for more... It's like... zombies of the animal kingdom. Flying... iridescent merciless multi-ton jaw-clamping power zombies. That fly.

\I think I watched too many nature shows as a kid.
 
2012-08-28 11:37:59 PM  
If one could conclude as to the nature of the Creator from a study of creation, it would appear that God has an inordinate fondness for stars and beetles.
 
2012-08-29 01:19:48 AM  
Not only did crocodiles evolve in a way that mutations over time didn't change them much, but you also have to consider that beetles and other insects have much shorter lifespans. Animals who go through generations 100 times faster than others are going to evolve 100 times faster. (not exactly, but the concept is close enough)
 
2012-08-29 01:29:05 AM  
No, subby.

Flying iridescent crocodiles would bring Earth into line with the universe's coolness limit.

Ever wonder why we never see any aliens? Earth sucks!

No time portals, no nukejuice, no antigrav bikes, and no flying iridescent crocodiles.

Bo-ring. Would you think your ship into threespace here? Neither would they.
 
2012-08-29 01:31:35 AM  

somemoron: Flying, iridescent crocs. How the fark am I supposed to get to sleep tonight? Goddammitsomuch


By finding comfort in that there are no flying iridescent spiders
 
2012-08-29 02:08:43 AM  

Nickninja: Because crocodiles found a reasonably optimized configuration millions of years ago. There were very few evolutionary pressures to change it, and therefore most mutations did not offer a selective advantage over the rest of the population and were simply outbread.


A species will change the most if there are no evolutionary pressures, and the least if there are many.

Consider the human. We will see the greatest variation now that all genetic (ok most) permutations still survive to breed.

It's all about randomization being restricted by outside forces, not about change being forced on genetic makeup be outside forces. A male will fark a female and the outcome will pop out regardless of what's good for it.
 
2012-08-29 04:10:53 AM  
upload.wikimedia.org

I, for one, don't miss our crocodile overlords.

Not one bit.
 
2012-08-29 11:09:54 AM  
Crocodiles produced massive variation, it's just that the tried-and-true ones managed to survive where other lineages died out. They can only be considered losers in the sense that none of the super-crocodiles managed to survive to the present day, while the super-dinosaurs, super-mammals, and so on have.

By this light, winning and losing is essentially defined as being something with the capability of successfully speciating in the face of new conditions. Crocodilian attempts to speciate simply aren't as successful as those of other long-timers. Personally i put it down to other lineages outcompeting them whenever conditions for speciation arose. That is the definition of losing, my fine mammalian friends.
 
2012-08-29 12:21:27 PM  
Super-dinosaurs have survived to this day?

Do you just mean birds or something?
 
2012-08-29 01:22:50 PM  
That's why I'm so shy.

I would just be too cool.
 
2012-08-29 02:06:06 PM  
Uh-oh.

www.funnyjunksite.com
 
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