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Humans Are Not the “Last Point” in the Evolution of Vertebrates Research Paper

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Updated: Apr 29th, 2022

Introduction

Evolution is the process of gradual change of plants and animals from their primitive nature to the current state. This process takes a long period and many theories and research support the evolution of various plants and animals as well the universe. This paper focuses on the evolution of animals and in precise the evolution of the vertebrates. The vertebrates and other animals passed through relative diversity groups through time. This paper seeks to research and clearly explain to someone without biology knowledge why the groups to which humans belong are not the last point of vertebrate evolution using the node of the phylogeny tree.

Why the group to which humans belong is not the “last point” in the evolution of vertebrates?

Human beings evolved from primitives over years. These primitives had larger brains in proportion to their body size than all terrestrial mammals (Benton, 2005). He further asserts that the primitives had mammalian characteristics although at improved levels. The primitives had “eyes that were large and close together on the front face and a reduced snout. The flattened face of most primates allowed them to look forward and have a large amount of overlap between the fields of the vision of both eyes, which makes stereoscopic, or three-dimensional, sight possible (Benton, 2005). This is possible to prove that primitives gradually evolved from mammals. The primates’ parental care for their offspring had significantly improved. Moreover, the borne that encloses the middle ear and other structures in the primitives was close to that of mammals though large (Barton and Briggs, 2007). Moreover, these primitives were believed to have evolved from mammalian fossils. In addition, there is a clear table of the evolutions and the period of the years that the evolution took place. It shows that the mammals were are not the highest evolution of the vertebrates but some more animals and primitives evolved until the modern man.

This knowledge made it easy to deal with the explanation of the thesis. Using the phylogeny or evolutionary tree of vertebrates, one might conclude that the mammals were the highest point of evolution. However, according to the research and studies are done, mammals are not. A phylogeny tree of vertebrates is a diagram that illustrates the evolution of vertebrates with time (Barton and Briggs, 2007). The phylogeny is like reading a family tree where, if we allow the root, which is the beginning of the tree to be a representation of the ancestral lineage, and the tips to be the branches to represent the descendants of that ancestor, then understanding the tree is easier. The ancestors here represent the fossils from which the vertebrates evolved. The Claude groups such as the reptilian, amphibian, and the other species represent the descendants of the fossils (Carroll, 1997). This can be compared to a family setup where the ancestors give rise to the first descendants who then give rise to the second descendants. The second descendants then give birth to the third that gives birth to the fourth, the fourth to the firth, and the family tree grows along with time. Initially, the evolution of the vertebrates started with a single node that rose to other branches. These branches then broke to give rise to more branches until the mammals evolved.

However, most people, as well as researchers, perceive mammals to be the highest point of evolution of vertebrates. This is not the case as the descendants of the ancestor in our family were set up in the example above; the mammals gave rise to the primitives that had more developed features than the mammals. Similarly, these primitives have evolved over the past years to what we call the modern man (human beings) (Carroll, 1997). Therefore, having this in mind it is possible to transform the same knowledge and judgment to the thesis of our topic that human beings are not the highest point in the evolution of the vertebrates. Human beings are a descendant of the many descendants of the ancestors of the fossils from which vertebrates evolved. This means that the human beings will then give or have given rise to other descendants not yet noted. As the ancestral lineages end after all the descendants are dead, the end of evolution ends after all the evolved and evolving species die. Thus, human beings still being in existence means that they are not the last in evolution.

Conclusion

When we consider the modern world and the ancient world, human beings have been living and existing in both worlds. The levels of technologies in the two worlds, that is, the modern and the ancient are far much apart and they advanced with time. For instance, the technologies applied in the 21st century are not the same as the technologies used in the 20th century. 21st-century technology is far much above 20th-century technology. This is a clear illustration that there has been a tremendous change in creativity and innovation, which is a result of critical thinking. This can, therefore, be evidence that there have been gradual changes in the thinking ability of human beings, which is part of evolution. Therefore, the hypothesis concludes that human beings are not at the highest level of vertebrates’ evolution. The challenge is what will be the next level of evolution.

Bibliography

Barton, Nicholas, and Briggs Derek. Evolution. New York: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, 2007.

Benton, Michael. Vertebrate Paleontology. Malden: Blackwell Publishing Company, 2005.

Carroll, Robert. Patterns and Process of Vertebrate Evolution. Cambridge: The Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge, 1997.

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IvyPanda. "Humans Are Not the “Last Point” in the Evolution of Vertebrates." April 29, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/humans-are-not-the-last-point-in-the-evolution-of-vertebrates/.

References

IvyPanda. 2022. "Humans Are Not the “Last Point” in the Evolution of Vertebrates." April 29, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/humans-are-not-the-last-point-in-the-evolution-of-vertebrates/.

References

IvyPanda. (2022) 'Humans Are Not the “Last Point” in the Evolution of Vertebrates'. 29 April.

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