[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

Re: Early Human Relative Predates Even Dinosaurs

> > Well here's another fine grabber headline, this time
> from MSNBC:
> > 
> > "Early Human Relative Predates Even Dinosaurs"
> > 
> > http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32194062/ns/technology_and_science-science/
> But what about the *odd* dinosaurs? :-)

They were too odd to look like good eatin', and hence were not predated (as 
opposed to antedated or pre-dated) by anything. I believe it is called 
"Doeriaan effect", after the unjustly-forgotten Dutch-Indonesian evolutionary 
food chemist Joeris Doeriaan.

Though phylogenetically, the headline is correct. Not much of news however; it 
is not the fact that synapsids evolved earlier than dinos that is spectacular, 
but that at least one lineage of synapsids could climb trees when there were 
not that many trees (as in "amply branching phanerophytes") to climb in the 
first place. Insofar one would go out on a limb if one made it "ancestors" 
instead of "relatives" - a tree-climbing synapsid would not have found the 
Triassic a fun time to be - if it survived 250 Ma in the first place.