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Evolution of Cognition

Discussion in 'Evolution Vs. Creationism' started by Wild Fox, May 24, 2019.

  1. Wild Fox

    Wild Fox Well-Known Member

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    Evolution and cognition.

    If the theory of evolution is correct and cognition is a trait that helps an organism adapt to its environment then we should see both related and unrelated organisms developing similar pattern of behavior. Opposite to a specific design for each type of organism we should see multiple ways of developing a similar trait.

    As with any trait, cognition helps an organism adapt to its environment and may in turn influence physical adaptations. Thus, we should be able to see evidence of both homologous patterns (related - descending from a common ancestor) and analogous patterns (unrelated - from different ancestral lines) – from different lines of decent. As with bats, birds we find ways to achieve flying using homologous structures yet different adaptations to achieve the ability to fly and Insects with analogous structures achieving the ability to fly with very different structures. What can we find in evolutionary cognition?

    One example is face recognition. The ability to recognize faces is an important adaptive trait in social behavior which was at one time thought to be a purely human trait. It would require learning and memory not just instinct. Where do we find evidence to support facial recognition outside of the human species?

    1. Chimpanzees show for better recognition of other chimpanzees than they do with recognition of individuals of other species. Clearly a homologous adaptation compared to humans.

    2. Sheep have possibly even greater facial recognition of other sheep as demonstrated by British scientists. They can easily tell each other apart from facial recognition. I am not so sure how well I can distinguish sheep faces that well. Homologous adaptation slightly more distant.

    3. Raven who are also social have facial recognition including evidence of facial recognition of humans which is preserved for years. Still homologous yet now more distantly related.

    4. Northern Paper wasp species which have multiple queens that have a hierarchy with in a nest have the same precise facial recognition that maintains the hierarchy and not allow outsider to become a part of the nest. A similar species of paper wasp with only one queen shows very little facial recognition. He is an analogous adaptation of facial recognition in with a very differently structured nervous system.

    Thus we see that the evolutionary trait of facial recognition, so important in social organisms, arising in different species.
     
  2. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    You forgot dolphins, and elephants.
     
  3. Wild Fox

    Wild Fox Well-Known Member

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    Have not forgotten just not yet included.
    ethologist Karen McComb voice recognition in Africa as she studied the reaction of elephants reaction to different ethnic groups in which they live with. Like face recognition there is amazing voice recognition. The Maasai males will spear elephants to prove their manhood or for access to water holes. The Kamba people of the same area no not interfere with the elephants. When she played back recordings of the two groups the saying the same words in their each language the elephants reacted to the Maasai recording by withdrawing from the area and yet were undisturbed by the Kamba recordings. They also distinguished male Maasai voices from female Maasai recordings.
    Elephants also passed the mirror test in self recognition.
    Dolphins show amazing cognitive skills.
     
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