They say there’s always more than one way to solve a problem, but some ways are better than others. Whether it’s tall ears, shells, beaks, or even glowing phosphorescence, the animal world is filled with examples of creatures who don’t share the same family tree but who do share important survival traits. In this fun, fact-filled look at convergent evolution, author Bridget Heos shows readers how some key survival problems are solved by some very different animals.

They say there’s always more than one way to solve a problem, but some ways are better than others. Whether it’s tall ears, shells, beaks, or even glowing phosphorescence, the animal world is filled with examples of creatures who don’t share the same family tree but who do share important survival traits. In this fun, fact-filled look at convergent evolution, author Bridget Heos shows readers how some key survival problems are solved by some very different animals.

...because they’ve adapted to the same ecological opportunities, these lizards have ended up looking so similar that even experienced biologists would have trouble telling them apart. Anoles are an extraordinary example of convergent evolution—where different living things independently acquire the same adaptations to the same challenges.

...because they’ve adapted to the same ecological opportunities, these lizards have ended up looking so similar that even experienced biologists would have trouble telling them apart. Anoles are an extraordinary example of convergent evolution—where different living things independently acquire the same adaptations to the same challenges.

Evolutionary Biology: Convergent Evolution, Evolution of Complex Traits, Concepts and Methods

Evolutionary Biology: Convergent Evolution, Evolution of Complex Traits, Concepts and Methods (Hardcover)

Evolutionary Biology: Convergent Evolution, Evolution of Complex Traits, Concepts and Methods

Horned lizards are morphologically similar to the Australian thorny devil (Moloch horridus), but are only distantly related. They also have other similarities, such as being sit-and-wait predators and preying upon ants, so the two species are considered a great example of convergent evolution.

Horned lizards are morphologically similar to the Australian thorny devil (Moloch horridus), but are only distantly related. They also have other similarities, such as being sit-and-wait predators and preying upon ants, so the two species are considered a great example of convergent evolution.

Footage from the Hobart Zoo, where the last known living thylacine died in 1938. Gif available at http://gifsoup.com/account/goldthylacine and adapted from the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egEZr2JWYH4

Case Studies of Convergent Evolution: of Wolves and Thylacines

Footage from the Hobart Zoo, where the last known living thylacine died in 1938. Gif available at http://gifsoup.com/account/goldthylacine and adapted from the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egEZr2JWYH4

10 Striking Examples of Convergent Evolution in the Animal Kingdom

10 Striking Examples of Convergent Evolution in the Animal Kingdom

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