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Posts Tagged ‘Evolution’

Zoos

Just a quick thought, prompted by spending yesterday at Twycross zoo. My father, a zoology graduate, and I were taking our time, enjoying the sunshine, and reading the notices as well as looking in some detail at those animals which were of interest to us. However, in all the notices, we only saw one which mentioned evolution directly, and that was in the display of information about bonobos, one of the closest living relations of Homo sapiens and a speciality of Twycross zoo (they keep the only breeding colony of bonobos in the UK).

I was lead to postulate that for whatever reason, the net effect of a zoo which keeps animals in no specific order and with no evolutionary information is to give the impression that each species could have been created seperately, independently, each a single miracle. I’m sure that this is not the intended effect, and yet if the links between species are not routinely made, how can a zoo be contributing to the evidence for evolution rather than for creationism?

(Of course, zoos have other flaws as well. The animals rights debate is yet to be settled, though I only saw one animal in Twycross displaying classic ‘caged’ behaviour, a lion who was pacing a short area very repetatively. Furthermore, if this was your only source of information, you could easily have come away with the impression that the only things which live in Africa are exciting animals and bushmeat hunters.)

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