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 Can anyone explain why?

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Dirk Marinus
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PostSubject: Can anyone explain why?   Sat 22 Sep 2018, 17:47

IF MAN EVOLVED FROM MONKEYS AND APES, WHY DO WE STILL HAVE MONKEYS AND  APES


Dirk
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Meles meles
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PostSubject: Re: Can anyone explain why?   Sat 22 Sep 2018, 19:24

Why should we not still have monkeys and apes?

Perhaps you should first explain exactly why you think that needs explaining. Humans and apes and monkeys are all evolved from a common ancestor - so why ever should they not still be happily existing alongside each other in the current world?
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PaulRyckier
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PostSubject: Re: Can anyone explain why?   Sat 22 Sep 2018, 22:00

@Meles meles wrote:
Why should we not still have monkeys and apes?

Perhaps you should first explain exactly why you think that needs explaining. Humans and apes and monkeys are all evolved from a common ancestor - so why ever should they not still be happily existing alongside each other in the current world?

Excuse my ignorance MM and Dirk, but what is the difference between monkeys and apes? In Dutch are "apen" still "apen"...
BTW Dirk have a look about my beer drinking thread about hop pickers (hoppeplukkers). Did the same exist in the Netherlands as in Britain and in Belgium?

Kind regards from Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: Can anyone explain why?   Sun 23 Sep 2018, 08:59

Paul, in scientific terms apes are primates exclusively from the Old World (Eurasia and Africa) and distinguished from other primates principally by a wider degree of freedom of motion at the shoulder joint. Scientifically this group includes humans. The so-called great apes, or the Hominidae if we're being more scientific, are a family of primates that includes eight extant species in four genera: Pongo (the 3 orangutan species); Gorilla (2 gorilla species); Pan (2 species of chimpanzee) and Homo, which includes modern humans and their extinct relatives (for example the Neanderthals) and their/our ancestors, such as Homo erectus etc.

Apes are a sister family of Old World monkeys, the Cercopithecidae. Old World monkeys are unlike apes in that most have tails (the family name means "tailed ape") but these tails are never prehensile.

New World monkeys (there are five families: Callitrichidae, Cebidae, Aotidae, Pitheciidae, and Atelidae) all seem to be descended from an ancester of the current Old World monkeys with this line splitting off about 40 million years ago, since when they have themselves evolved and diversified, exclusively in South and Central America, to give the five extant New World monkey families. These New World monkeys typically have flatter faces than their Old World relatives and also typically (with the exception of howler monkeys) lack the trichromatic vision of Old World monkeys (and of Old World apes, including of course humans). New World monkeys are the only ones to have evolved prehensile tails.

That said, the strict physical distinction between apes, and Old- or New World monkeys is primarily based on dentition. Moreover the definitive relatedness of extant species is now usually determined through DNA analysis, but this of course is rarely an option when dealing with exinct, ancestral animals.

So scientifically speaking humans are apes, and apes are most closely related to Old World monkeys, and at a slightly lesser remove from New World monkeys.

Here's quite a good up-to-date chart showing the taxonomic relationships between various extant apes and monkeys based on DNA studies (the red lines were just to illustrate a specific point in the article from which I filched it and although it appears to place humans outside of the other apes, nevertheless the relationship is clear).

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PostSubject: Re: Can anyone explain why?   Thu 04 Oct 2018, 14:28

Somewhat related to the OP I recall earlier this year reading that the Indian Minister for Education invited widespread ridiclule when he publically dismissed the theory of evolution and demanded it be removed from the school curriculum saying:
"Since man is seen on Earth, he has always been a man. Nobody, including our ancestors, in written or oral, said they ever saw an ape turning into a human being." .... and this from a man who supposedly has a PhD in chemistry.

I'm rather reminded of PG Wodehouse’s character, Sir Roderick Spode, who in 'Code of the Woosters', was described as being "a gorilla that evolution changed its mind on in the final stages of development".
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PaulRyckier
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PostSubject: Re: Can anyone explain why?   Thu 04 Oct 2018, 22:18

Meles meles,

in my never ending backlog I forgot to thank you for your excellent reply and full explanation from a difference I wasn't aware of.
But suddenly I see now perhaps also a difference in Dutch looking to your tree:
"mensapen" (human apes): apes
"apen": monkeys

yes unbelievable of some, even PhDs, about science that is already proved more than a century...
and yes my believed P.G. Wodehouse...I bought all his books in translation, second-hand...14-17 years old, for the now ridiculous price of less than a quarter of a Pound/ a quarter Euro...
And I appreciated already the British novels, but with P. G. it went steep upwards...

Kind regards from Paul.
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