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Evidence of Evolution - Essay Example

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According to O’Neil (2003), primates are among the most recent animals to exist compared to other species. The first primate came into existence billion years…
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Evidence of Evolution
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Evidence of Evolution

Download file to see previous pages... As a result led an arboreal way of life characterized good eye precision, a hand grip and padded feet with claws to enable climbing.
The first primates were Prosimians whose niche was during the Paleocene Epoch. Prosimians faced global extinction of plants and animals that lacked adaptions to survive in the changing environment and had to adapt to complete the versatile ecological niche (Butzer, 1977). The early Prosimians were relatively small in size, they had a grasping hand and feet that were adapted to climbing trees and efficiently manipulated objects. At this stage they were developing stereoscopic vision. However, the Prosimians became extinct by the end of the Eocene Epoch and gave way to the anthropoids that existed during the Oligocene.
The Oligocene was characterized by regional climate shifts that definitely influenced the direction of evolution (O’Neil, 2003). The climate at the time created a favorable environment for growth of fruits and seed plants that the anthropoids feed on. However, they still lived on trees. Due their environment and feeding habits, they had fewer teeth, larger brain capacity and a more defined stereoscopic vision as compared to the Prosimians.
The Miocene Epoch was the next Epoch after the Oligocene. It was characterized by the movement of tectonic plates that created mountain chains. This changed the weather patterns, whereas the progressive global cooling and drying was still in force. Eventually, polar ice caps reduced the amount of water in the oceans lowering the sea levels. A land reconnection occurred between Africa and Asia, providing a migration route for primates and other animals (Williams, 2001). Tropical forests in South Asia and East Africa replaced the dry grasslands and woodlands providing a strategic environment for the survival of primates.
The hominoids evolved during this period as primate ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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