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Re: Lemurs and Feathers (well, Arthropods, too!)



Ah, holidays... time to answer some old mails...

I'd like to add that insects are definitely not primarily aerial or aquatic,
but terrestrial; their wings may have begun as tracheal gills, I guess, in
secondarily aquatic forms. So they were terrestrial before they came aerial,
and probably were aquatic in between. Otherwise I'd expect the wings in the
place where arthropod gills basally are -- the dorsal branches of the famous
biramous legs -- , and the primarily flightless insects as well as the
myriapods would have had to become terrestrial independently. So the flying
insects may really be, to a limited extent, a precedence case for flying
theropods and maybe even for pterosaurs; they apparently show that it can
happen, flight can evolve from swimming, in principle.

**************************************
If an idea enters a hollow head it completely fills it because there is no
other idea that could compete with it for rank.
        Charles de Montesquieu