There is a wide range of evidence throughout the world. Everything from fossils dug up from the earth, to evidence for evolution within animals and humans. This evidence for evolution provides us with a lot of information on the natural processes by with the earth’s inhabitants have changed over time.
Fossils are some of the most important pieces of evidence for evolution that scientists have to work with but since they are very scarce and rare, they only provide sparse records evidence for evolution. More recently, the genetic composition of species living on earth reveal a lot of evidence for evolution and where species have descended from. Certain recently uncovered evidence, such as dormant DNA in animals that are no longer active but relate to a certain species of animals, help further strengthen evidence for evolution.
1. The importance of genetics in the strengthening of the evidence for evolution
Although in its infant stages, genetic research has helped make great strides for scientists that support the evolution theory. There are a lot of comparative research being done to compare DNA sequences of related species that support the notion that all species have a common descent. DNA research also helps scientists understand DNA mutations and why they occur. Mutations are a sudden change in the characteristics of DNA that occurs in organisms, sometimes without warning, that aid in the developmental changes of species. They have been theorized as playing a large role in evolution.
2. What does paleontology and evidence for evolution have in common?
Fossils are physical evidence of the remains of organisms that are preserved in the earth and excavated by Paleontologists. When ancient organisms are preserved, they provide scientists a lot of information about what organisms were like thousands and sometimes millions of years ago and what part they played in evolution.
In order to aide in the research evolution theory, determining the age of fossils is important. Fossils are usually created when sediments fill into the pores of an organism’s bones and harden into stone. Scientists can usually determine the age of fossils by determining the layer of sediment that the fossil is found in. Then, when age is determined, a better picture of the evolution of life can be painted by scientists.
Unfortunately, while fossils provide a great tool to estimate evidence for evolution, they are not the best source of information for evolution scientists. The reason for this is the probability of fossil creation is low, a lot of species are more prone to become fossilized, many fossils have been tampered with and destroyed by natural erosion, and fossils do not divulge much information about how an organism functioned.
3. What is comparative anatomy, and how does it support evidence for evolution?
Comparing the anatomy of similar animals is a very common way for scientists to study the evolution theory. There are three key ideas that scientist assumes when using comparative anatomy for supporting the theory of evolution:
• Evolution scientists believe that groups with less similar features may have diverged from a common ancestor much earlier than groups with many similar features.
• In decided related features, evolution scientists look for structures that are fundamentally similar, even though they serve different functions.
• In the above case, it may be necessary to trace their embryonic development. A similar developmental origin suggests they were likely derived from a common ancestor.