" We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged." - Dissent from Darwin

Natural selection [is used] carelessly as a mantra, as in the evidence-free “just-so stories” concocted out of thin air by mentally lazy adaptationists. (Stephen Jay Gould)

In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God's existence. (Isaac newton)

Friday, February 16, 2007

How Peacock got his Tail

Anders Moller of the Laboratoire d'Ecologie at the French national research center in Paris has been interested in why males should have multiple ornaments. For instance, male peacocks not only have a long tail, but they are brightly colored and have eye spots, a crest on their head, spurs on their feet, and a mating call.
Moller's theory was that these ornaments signal different aspects of the male's quality to a female.

"Our main finding is that females are looking at different aspects of a male's immune competence," said Moller. Males, in effect, are walking billboards advertising their health and status.
And these things matter. Previous research has shown that in chickens and quail, at least, the immune system is under genetic control so offspring will inherit their parents' ability to fight parasites.
Thus, it pays for females to be choosy because their chicks, in turn, will survive better and mate with other, equally picky females.

Storyteller: Anders Moller, Laboratoire d'Ecologie, French national research center
Source: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/09/0909_peacock.html
Aknowledgements : http://creationsafaris.com/

StoryUnteller: Female Peacocks Not Impressed by Male Feathers

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