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The Pomarine Jaeger is definitely a species

The Pomarine Jaeger is definitely a species

Uncommon Descent, a blog dedicated to the pseudoscience of intelligent design, has one of the stupidest things I’ve read in a while. They quote an article from the Toronto Star discussing a process of hybridization between coyotes and wolves in Ontario that appears to be causing the evolution of a new species. Since creationists and IDers falsely deny the existence of speciation through macroevolution, they then claim that these organisms are just hybrids.

Uncommon Descent is wrong. Hybrid speciation is a fact. For example, the butterfly species Heloconius heurippa is a species derived from hybridization between H. melpomene and H. cydno (see this abstract from Nature). The Pomarine Jaeger (Stercorarius pomarinus), a predatory subarctic Charadriiform seabird, is in many ways intermediate between other jaegers and Southern Hemisphere skuas. There is some evidence that it may be a hybrid of the Great Skua (S. skua) and one of the other jaegers (see this PubMed abstract). Since according to ID, macroevolution does not occur, if the Pomarine Jaeger really is a hybrid, it could not be a species, just a hybrid. However, the Pomarine Jaeger is a perfectly acceptable example of a species, showing Uncommon Descent to be false.

Image via the Wikimedia Commons.

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Comments on: "Apparently, the Pomarine Jaeger is not a species" (2)

  1. The Arbourist said:

    Please give warning when linking to the burning stupid. I got my keyboard damp with the coffee I was having for breakfast.

    I hope they open a thread on gravity and its merits.

  2. I know, like intelligent falling!

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