- The Loom
Will Colbert Make The World's First Species Delimitation Joke Tonight?
This should be interesting. In the June issue of Scientific American, I wrote an article called “What Is A Species?” I wrote about the challenges scientists face in drawing a line between species, especially when they have only recently diverged from a common ancestor and are still interbreeding. One of the best examples of how scientists tackle this challenge came out of a conversation I had with Jason Bond, an East Carolina University biologist who studies trapdoor-building spiders. In the article I explained how he studies the evolutionary history of the spiders, their adaptation to ecolical niches, and the flow of genes from one population to another. Combining these lines of evidence, he then proposes new species.