Lead author Dr Michael Lee, of the South Australian Museum and University of Adelaide, says the “exceptionally preserved fossil eyes” also underscore the speed and magnitude of the evolutionary innovation that occurred during this period.
“If the development of complex life is viewed as 24 hours, everything of interest happened in the first hour,” he says. “Our fossils are from that first hour. Within the first blink of evolution, animals had evolved eyes that are very similar to what modern animals have today.”
– in conversation with Dani Cooper, “Eyes give insight into evolutionary arms race” (ABC News, 30 June 2011)
And this striking compression of time is due to:
“The evolution of vision triggered the ability to find prey [and] the evolution of animals that could eat other animals triggered an evolutionary arms race where animals either evolved or died.”
It’s been observed that terms like “evolutionary arms race”are magnificent thought stoppers. Just say them and no one wonders about anything any more. As Tom Buchanan said, “It’s science.”It’s been explained.”