Retro beefalo. From ScienceDaily:
Ancient DNA research has revealed that Ice Age cave artists recorded a previously unknown hybrid species of bison and cattle in great detail on cave walls more than 15,000 years ago.
The mystery species, known affectionately by the researchers as the Higgs Bison* because of its elusive nature, originated over 120,000 years ago through the hybridisation of the extinct Aurochs (the ancestor of modern cattle) and the Ice Age Steppe Bison, which ranged across the cold grasslands from Europe to Mexico.
Research led by the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA (ACAD) at the University of Adelaide, published today in Nature Communications, has revealed that the mystery hybrid species eventually became the ancestor of the modern European bison, or wisent, which survives in protected reserves such as the Białowieża forest between Poland and Belarus.
“Finding that a hybridisation event led to a completely new species was a real surprise — as this isn’t really meant to happen in mammals,” says study leader Professor Alan Cooper, ACAD Director. More.
No? Why not?
Not sure about the “completely new species” part. Wouldn’t this creature, plus the modern “beefalo,” be evidence that some iterations of life forms never definitely part ways for good?
To the extent that those species have been around for a while in large numbers, their approach to survival has everything to recommend it except textbook Darwinism.
See also: Darwin’s finches not a good example of Darwinian evolution?
Hybridization, not Darwin’s natural selection, explains why butterflies mimic each other?
Red wolf not endangered, a hybrid?
Nothing says “Darwin snob” like indifference to the mess that the entire concept of speciation is in
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