Save Darwin’s mockingbirds

Hat tip to The Dispersal of Darwin:

Although Darwin’s finches are often given credit for inspiring Charles Darwin, in reality Darwin’s mockingbirds deserve much of the credit. They are close to extinction. They have been extirpated on their native island of Floreana and survive only on two smaller islands. Their numbers went down to about two hundred birds. Now, with a good rainy season behind them, their numbers have grown to about four hundred. That is too many birds for the small islands to support.

The Galapagos Conservation Trust (GCT) and the Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) hope to move some of the mockingbirds to their original Floreana and restore their ecosystem. You can support that effort. The birds will be carefully watched and  will provide knowledge for larger restoration efforts and breeding programs.

Fifth day of Christmas

“On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me….”

funny pictures of cats with captions
more funny animals

Books to read

PZ Myers recommends some basic books about evolution: “Read these!

  • Donald Prothero’s Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why It Matters(amzn/b&n/abe/pwll)
  • Carl Zimmer’s At the Water’s Edge: Fish with Fingers, Whales with Legs, and How Life Came Ashore but Then Went Back to Sea (amzn/b&n/abe/pwll)
  • Jerry Coyne’s Why Evolution Is True(amzn/b&n/abe/pwll)
  • Neil Shubin’s Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body(amzn/b&n/abe/pwll)
  • Sean Carroll’s The Making of the Fittest: DNA and the Ultimate Forensic Record of Evolution(amzn/b&n/abe/pwll)

This is not an onerous demand. These books are not overly technical, they aren’t part of the specialist literature, they are just general introductions to the ideas and evidence of evolution.”

I’ve read At the Water’s Edge and Your Inner Fish. Both were informative, enjoyable, and convincing as they explained some of the history of evolution. At the Water’s Edge describes the history of tetrapods’ conquest of the land, with the evidence we have. Shubin’s Your Inner Fish shows the traces of our fish ancestry in our bodies.

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