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Re: Digit Loss (kiwis and tyrannosaurs)



First you said:
<The only way to find a trend in evolution is to _manufacture_ it, by
_selecting_ a single lineage from the multitude of available lineages and
rendering all its related/dependent lineages as side branches.>
Then you finished:
<It's not that there are no trends, it's that there are
incredibly many trends, going in all different directions.>

I like your conclusion much more than your topic sentence.
Among these many trends, aren't there some that recur more frequently, that
are in many lineages?  If you were shopping for increasing body size or
increasing brain size, wouldn't you find a large selection?  If you were
searching for loss of forelimbs by bipedal hunters, wouldn't the results be
pretty skimpy?
Being able to say that a direction is usual or unusual is suggestive, not
conclusive, but any evidence is useful, no?