In my class yesterday I reviewed a paper selected by my students that explored the sweet tasting abilities of bats. We learned that most, but not all, bats can taste sugar like other mammals. I did not know much about mammalian taste receptors (that is one problems with letting students pick the topics!) and I […]
As we saw in the last installment of this series, When is a Horse a Horse?, horse species today appear to represent divergent genetic units that naturally do not interbreed on a regular basis. Therefore each of these lineages of horses is acting like a species as defined by the biological species concept. This raises the […]
Creationists are becoming more and more likely to view the origin of horse species and other large groups of similar species as the result as descent from a common ancestor albeit via mechanisms and at rates which may not be recognizable to evolutionary biologists. But where does does variation in a kind end and a new kind begin?
I think it is safe to say that the average person has little appreciation for the diversity (eg. number of species) and the total numbers of whales in the world. What most people hear about whales is that there are some that are hunted to near extinction. This tends to create the impression that whales are rare animals. Yes, there are many rare and endangered species of whales but there there are many that are very abundant.