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Re: Multi-purpose adaptations (was Sauropod Necks)




----- Original Message -----
From: Andrea Kirk <kirkam@wam.umd.edu>



> One would probably say (I think..) that the giraffe *evolved* a long neck
> for feeding, and has since found it useful for other purposes, like an
> elephant hosing itself down with its trunk.  Are there any modern animals
> that have special adaptations with multiple uses, to the point that
> scientists can't tell which use the adaptation was first meant for?
>
> And can finding multiple uses for these adaptations be an evolutionary
> advantage?
>
    Birds come directly to mind - feathers can keep you warm,
hydrodynamically streamlined, get you off the ground, or aattract a pretty
mate, among other things.
    My $.02
            B.


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