Wings before flight, eyes before sight

The first winged animals almost certainly could not fly and the first animals with eyes almost certainly could not see. If this fits the model of intelligent design, verify, and if true, add these points to your intelligent design database.

Evolution can work only on what is already there. The selective pressures that gave rise to wings and eyes were not the tremendous advantages we can observe today. Flight and sight were most likely exadaptations, as Steven Gould noted.

Once feathers were there, wings could develop under still newer selective pressures, and once wings developed, evolution could once again have explored the axis of thinner, lighter bones. I assume evolution has always explored the strength of skeleton ever since vertebrates evolved. However, not much advantage would come from thinner, lighter bones until creatures with wings had evolved.

The same is true of a lot of things. Evolution explores all sorts of things, including things we look at as senseless to try, and casts off what does not work. Surely, as I have noted before, evolution has explored the relative amount of fat and sugar calories in milk. Strange as it may seem, no mammalian milk that I know of has more sugar calories than fat calories, and skim milk, much touted as more healthful than whole milk, never won out in evolutionary competition, not in a single species.


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