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Hybrids and evolution? Meet the Savannah cat

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Savannah Cat portrait.jpgFurther to: Life continues to ignore what evolution experts say (Hmm. Maybe the experts should just fire all the current life forms and get themselves different ones?):

The other week, I was buying a sack of dry cat food at the feed mill. At the checkout, I noticed a really, really big cat sitting on the counter.

He was about three times as big as a typical Ottawa kitty.

Could stand up to a police dog.

A helpful individual explained to me that he is the only registered Savannah cat in the area. The Savannah is a hybrid of the African serval and the European shorthair— our local rescue kitties).

I was also told not to worry about him:

He is a therapy cat.

(Wondered what kind of therapy he’d be doing, but that wasn’t really my business at the time.)

Felines seem to hybridize quite readily, and I vaguely remembered some trivia about lions and tigers:

Female tigons and ligers have often proved to be fertile and can mate with a lion, tiger or in theory with another species such as leopard or jaguar. Tigons and ligers have been mated together to produce ti-ligers (tig-ligers). Tigers and tigons have been mated to produce ti-tigons. Ti-ligers and ti-tigons are more tigerlike (75% tiger). Ti-tigons resemble golden tigers but with less contrast in their markings. During the late 1970s/early 1980s, the Shambala Preserve had both a tigon and a ti-tigon. Noelle, the tigon, was born in 1978. Believing that big cats are always infertile, staff allowed Noelle to share an enclosure with a male Siberian tiger called Anton. In 1983, Noelle produced a ti-tigon name Nathaniel. Being 75% tiger, Nathaniel had darker stripes than his mother and he “spoke” tiger rather than the mix of sounds used by his mother. Being only 25% lion, Nathaniel did not grow a mane.

One reason big cats mightn’t hybridize apart from human intervention is that they don’t live close to each other.

File:A small cup of coffee.JPGI still think, if you need therapy, get a teddy bear. 😉

See also: Talk to the fossils: Let’s see what they say back

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OT: How Consciousness Points to the Existence of God https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nc-v3OIvh2g bornagain77
Classification of ancient hominid fossils is difficult? Ummm, yes. Is Casey saying they aren't around 1.8 million years old? Maybe because you all believe the world was created around 10,000 years ago? Cute kitty, though. Seversky
As a Taxonomic Group, "Homo habilis" Is Challenged in the Journal Science - Casey Luskin - September 9, 2015 Excerpt: in a recent article in Science, "Defining the genus Homo," Jeffrey H. Schwartz and Ian Tattersall explain that Homo habilis (literally, "handy man") was originally placed within Homo because researchers wanted an old species that apparently made tools: In 1964, Leakey and colleagues attributed the newly discovered ~1.8-million-year-old partial mandible, skullcap and hand (OH7) and foot (OH8), plus other materials from Olduvai Gorge, to the new species Homo habilis. This species replaced the very roughly contemporaneous South African australopiths in Mayr's transformationist scenario, although there was scant morphological justification for including any of this very ancient material in Homo. Indeed, the main motivation appears to have been Leakey's desire to identify this hominid as the maker of the simple stone tools found in the lower layers of the Gorge, following the dictum of Man the Toolmaker. This association has subsequently proven highly dubious. The inclusion in Homo of the H. habilis fossils so broadened the morphology of the genus that further hominids from other sites could be shoehorned into it almost without regard to their physical appearance. As a result, the largely unexamined definition of Homo became even murkier. http://www.evolutionnews.org/2015/09/as_a_taxonomic_099181.html

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