The Opposing Thumb

An opinionated digit leafs through the biological literature
Media Roundup

Floppy Friendliness

Stable domestication by artificial selection is a haphazard process, prone to producing unpredictable biological effects alongside desired traits like docility or fertility. Biologists Don Newgreen and Jeffrey Craig have written a post on one such recurring cluster of oddities- an example was noted by that avid student of animal breeding, Charles Darwin: “Not a single domestic animal can be named which has not in some country drooping ears”. Newman & Craig’s text is an accessible look at a common embryological origin for many of the seemingly unconnected common characteristics of domestication, proposed by Adam Wilkins, Richard Wrangham and Tecumseh Fitch in the journal Genetics.


Opposing Canine (aka Alabama), half wild, half domesticated.

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