niles eldredge Quotes

Niles Eldredge Quotes

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    • There is presumably an upper limit to the carrying capacity of humans on earth-of the numbers that agriculture can support-and that number is usually estimated at between 13-15 billion, though some people think the ultimate numbers might be much higher. (2001)
    • At the core of punctuated equilibria lies an empirical observation: once evolved, species tend to remain remarkably stable, recognizable entities for millions of years. The observation is by no means new, nearly every paleontologist who reviewed Darwin's Origin of Species pointed to his evasion of this salient feature of the fossil record. But stasis was conveniently dropped as a feature of life's history to he reckoned with in evolutionary biology. And stasis had continued to be ignored until Gould and I showed that such stability is a real aspect of life's history which must be confronted-and that, in fact, it posed no fundamental threat to the basic notion of evolution itself. For that was Darwin's problem: to establish the plausibility of the very idea of evolution, Darwin felt that he had to undermine the older (and ultimately biblically based) doctrine of species fixity. Stasis, to Darwin, was an ugly inconvenience.
    • niles eldredge

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