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RE: The origin of flight: from the water up

Rutger Jansma wrote:

>> This counters the previously hold belief by scientist
>> that evolution occurs more slowly in the Arctic regions.
>Aha... anyone around here who believed that? I've never read this...

Not me.  In fact, one could advance the hypothesis that the harsh conditions
at the polar regions forces a higher rate of evolution upon resident
lineages - or at least some bottlenecking.

And penguins are only found in the southern hemisphere, not at the North
Pole (remember that thread?)

> Alright, maybe Anne of Bolin (one of the wives of Henry V from England)
> would be a good bet than

Wrong number - VIII not V.  He of the siphylitic temperament.  

Philidor wrote:

> Trees down?  Yes.  (Though, contra Tim, I still think an ambush leap 
> has a better angle from a large rock than from a tree.) 

Unfortunately, this ecology is dependent upon conveniently situated boulders
or ditches or logs.  As a platform for such descents, trees are more
convenient.  True, one species of "flying" squirrel is non-arboreal and
glides in rocky, mountainous terrain.  But I think this is a stretch for
avian ancestors.



Timothy J. Williams 

USDA-ARS Researcher 
Agronomy Hall 
Iowa State University 
Ames IA 50014 

Phone: 515 294 9233 
Fax:   515 294 3163