Giant Spider Weaves Web of Super Strength Never Before Seen

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Caerostris darwini, a giant orb spider and namesake of Charles Darwin, weaves a web of tremendous strength and size.

The antithesis of the itsy-bitsy spider, Caerostris darwini, a giant orb spider and namesake of Charles Darwin, weaves a web of super strength never before seen, says Dr. Todd Blackledge, Leuchtag Endowed Chair at The University of Akron.

 

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Small Dogs Originated in the Middle East, Genetic Study Finds

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Yorkshire terrier.

A genetic study has found that small domestic dogs probably originated in the Middle East more than 12,000 years ago. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Biology traced the evolutionary history of the IGF1 gene, finding that the version of the gene that is a major determinant of small size probably originated as a result of the domestication of the Middle Eastern gray wolf.

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‘Survival of the Cutest’ Proves Darwin Right

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‘Survival of the cutest.’ Domestic dogs have followed their own evolutionary path, twisting Darwin’s directive ‘survival of the fittest’ to their own needs.

Domestic dogs have followed their own evolutionary path, twisting Darwin’s directive ‘survival of the fittest’ to their own needs — and have proved him right in the process, according to a new study by biologists Chris Klingenberg, of The University of Manchester and Abby Drake, of the College of the Holy Cross in the US.

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How Did Flowering Plants Evolve to Dominate Earth?

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Colorful tulips and other spring flowers in the Keukenhof Gardens, the Netherlands. How did flowering plants come to dominate plant life on earth?

To Charles Darwin it was an ‘abominable mystery’ and it is a question which has continued to vex evolutionists to this day: when did flowering plants evolve and how did they come to dominate plant life on earth? A new study in Ecology Letters reveals the evolutionary trigger which led to early flowering plants gaining a major competitive advantage over rival species, leading to their subsequent boom and abundance.

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New Type Of Flying Reptile: Darwin’s Pterodactyl Preyed On Flying Dinosaurs

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This is a drawing of Darwinopterus hunting a small feathered dinosaur

An international group of researchers from the University of Leicester (UK), and the Geological Institute, Beijing (China) has identified a new type of flying reptile, providing the first clear evidence of an unusual and controversial type of evolution.

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Mutations Make Evolution Irreversible: By Resurrecting Ancient Proteins, Researchers Find That Evolution Can Only Go Forward

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Fish fossil. Researchers resurrected and manipulate the gene for a key hormone receptor as it existed in our earliest vertebrate ancestors more than 400 million years ago.

A University of Oregon research team has found that evolution can never go backwards, because the paths to the genes once present in our ancestors are forever blocked. The findings — the result of the first rigorous study of reverse evolution at the molecular level — appear in the Sept. 24 issue of Nature.

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Scientists Use MicroRNAs To Track Evolutionary History For First Time

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A common European earthworm burrowing into soil.

The large group of segmented worms known as annelids, which includes earthworms, leeches and bristle worms, evolved millions of years ago and can be found in every corner of the world. Although annelids are one of the most abundant animal groups on the planet, scientists have struggled to understand how the different species of this biologically diverse group relate to each other in terms of their evolutionary history.

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Geography And History Shape Genetic Differences In Humans

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New research indicates that natural selection may shape the human genome much more slowly than previously thought. Other factors — the movements of humans within and among continents, the expansions and contractions of populations, and the vagaries of genetic chance – have heavily influenced the distribution of genetic variations in populations around the world.

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