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Re: "Red Queen" Hypothesis
> I believe the "Red Queen" hypothesis also includes a corollary
> to the effect that an individual doesn't actually have to
> "outrun/outgun" a predator to succeed, but just has to be able
> to beat out another individual (of the same species or another
> one) that the predator will find satisfactory as a meal...
I've always thought this was a good explanation for certain problems
for certain transitional forms of prey animals in evolution, particularly
involving the development of mimicry and camoflage. Being perfectly
camoflaged of colored to imitate a poisionaous species is all great, but
what about an animal in the process of evolving such a defense? Is looking
just slightly like the environment or just slightly like a poisionaous animal
enough to give the animal a selective advantage for survival, and thus
prod the species's evolution further in that direction? The corollary
presented above seems to offer a solution for this. If a predator's
chances of overlooking a prey animal is just slightly greater than for a
slightly less camoflaged member of the species, the chances of the
protected animals genes being passed on are just that much greater. Kind
o like the joke about the two guys who run into a grizzly bear in the
woods. One guy starts putting on his running shoes and the other guy
says, "are you crazy, you can't outrun that bear!" to which the other
replies "I don't have to, I just have to outrun you."
I relaize this has next to nothing to do with dinosaurs, and least not
directly. I also strongly doubt this is an original argument.
If anyone can provide me a reference for a paper exploring the subject, I
would be appreciative.