A new evolution theory published in Biology Letters opposes the evolution theory put forth by Darwin. Unlike Darwin’s theory, The piece on Biology Letters is completely different so which theory is correct?
Darwin’s evolutionary theory suggested that animals evolved based on survival and competition, “those who evolved to best suit an environment would survive.” That certainly makes sense and it’s easy to understand why the theory has been accepted and taught since it was published in 1859.
The new evolution theory, set forth by a team at the University of Bristol claimed that “species evolve given the amount of physical space that they are privy to.” The students were apparently researching why animals evolved faster during some periods than others and came up with the new evolution theory:
â€œThe new study proposes that really big evolutionary changes happen when animals move into empty areas of living space, not occupied by other animals…For example, when birds evolved the ability to fly, that opened up a vast range of new possibilities not available to other animals. Suddenly the skies were quite literally the limit, triggering a new evolutionary burst.â€
That is a very good theory, however, not everybody is buying it. Just because a new theory comes out does not mean instant acceptance. Professor Stephen Stearns, a senior evolutionary biologist at Yale University feels otherwise:
â€œTo give one example, if the reptiles had not been competitively superior to the mammals during the Mesozoic (era), then why did the mammals only expand after the large reptiles went extinct at the end of the Mesozoic? And in general, what is the impetus to occupy new portions of ecological space if not to avoid competition with the species in the space already occupied?â€
So, which theory is correct? Most likely both theories have valid points and are correct in their own rights. So, what do you think about Darwin’s theory as opposed to the new theory?
Â© Sophie S. Benvenuti – 2010