Articles on Evolution

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Euphanerops, a primitive jawless fish from the World Heritage site at Miguasha, Quebec, which has now been found to have paired hind limb structures and copulatory sex organs. François Miville-Deschênes with permission

The origins of those sexual organs: a fishy tale much more primitive than we thought

Sexual organs similar to what we see in sharks and rays today appeared many millions of years ago in much more primitive ancient fishes than was previously thought.
A life reconstruction of Brindabellaspis stensioi, an unusual placoderm fish from the 400-million-year old Burrinjuck reef in New South Wales, Australia. Jason Art, Shenzhen

Fossil fish with platypus-like snout shows that coral reefs have long been evolution hotspots

Brindabellaspis had eyes on the top of the head, facing upwards, and a skull stretched into a long and broad snout. Although around 400 million years old, it was clearly a specialised fish.
A stick insect in Borneo: variation and natural selection has resulted in insects with the astonishing ability to mimic features in their natural environment. Shutterstock

Guide to the classics: Darwin’s On the Origin of Species

In this age of the pseudo-factual, its more important than ever to acquaint ourselves with the foundations of the scientific tradition, such as Darwin's Origin of Species.
Will the yellow warbler survive a changing climate? By Steve Byland/shutterstock.com

Can this bird adapt to a warmer climate? Read the genes to find out

As the climate warms, some species will not be able to evolve fast enough to adapt to the new conditions. Rachael Bay examined DNA for clues as to which yellow warblers were most vulnerable.
Health workers get ready to spray insecticide in advance of the 2016 Summer Olympics, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to combat the mosquitoes that transmit the Zika virus in this Jan. 26, 2016 photo. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

Viruses can cause global pandemics, but where did the first virus come from?

Recent discoveries of ancient viruses are helping scientists understand their origins.
Could seeing things in black-and-white terms influence people’s views on scientific questions? Lightspring/Shutterstock.com

The thinking error at the root of science denial

Why do some people reject scientifically accepted ideas? A psychotherapist points to black-and-white thinking as part of the explanation.

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