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WTF: Fruit Fly with (Painted) Spiders on Its Wings

A fruit fly (G. tridens) with images of jumping spiders ‘painted’ on its wings. Aw c’mon, Evolution! Now you’re just showin’ off.

The photograph was taken in Dubai by Peter Roosenschoon, a conservation officer at the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve.

Why jumping spiders? according to Mark Moffett, photographer and adventurer –best known as Doctor Bugs“[un]nlike ants, jumping spiders are visual and see their image in the wings, I’ve watched them dance to [an] image (thinking it a mate) rather than eat the prey.” My, What a sly fly…

[H/T Geekologie]

And from the Grail archives…

  • A moth that looks like a leaf!
    1. How is that even possible?!!
      How is that even possible?!!

      Coincidentally just heard a news story that cocaine addicts children have less of a cocaine addiction potential (per study done on rats) due to the off-springs’ receptors in the brain being shut off due to addiction of parent. So the habit/action of the parent changed the genetic function of the children, i.e. heritable trait due to changes in the gene expression – not the genes themselves. This is called epigenetics. It seems to me this was blasphemy during my college days, but now seems to be accepted science.

      Perhaps this helps explain directed evolution, not being so random after all. Could purely random evolution result in nearly perfect 3-d images of jumping spiders on a fruit fly’s wings? How many random variations had to occur before the perfect spider image occurred, and then that fruit fly lived long enough to produce progeny with the same image, etc… Possible yes after millions or billions of random changes, but/or perhaps all living organisms consciousness, actions & experiences have more influence on biology than presently accepted or understood…resulting in these heritable traits…that tend to direct evolution, rather than it being purely random…?

      1. Perhaps . .
        [quote=Greg H.]How is that even possible?!!

        Perhaps this helps explain directed evolution, not being so random after all. [/quote]

        Perhaps. Or perhaps it is just one more example that the standard notions of evolution are silly.

    2. Evolution??
      Really? I suppose it depends on how one is using the term. If the consciousness that is generating the fly assessing a helpful decoration and putting it there “overnight” is what one means by evolution – then yes.

      Of course, it is possible that the image evolved in a way that fits the more common definition but there is no data provided to indicate that.

      More importantly – what evolutionary mechanism would assess to a level that many humans don’t – to know what a spider looks like, deduce that an image will be attractive to that spider and then produce such a image! To posit that as an evolutionary “accident” seems far-fetched at best.

      1. To name a thing…
        Just because we name a thing, or a process, doesn’t mean we actually understand it.

        So we have this process called ‘Evolution,’ and currently the dominant idea is that it’s driven solely by pure chance & random mutations.

        But as you & Greg H. pointed out, perhaps there’s something missing in the equation, that should also be taken into consideration.

        Now I know that the (very American) debate of Darwinism vs Intelligent Design is very controversial, and frankly, I’m not even interested in engaging in it –because I feel the debate is merely a mascara for ANOTHER type of debate…

        I chose to post the picture of this fly, because I knew Grailers would be able to appreciate for what it is: something to marvel at, and ponder upon 😉

        1. I agree RPJ. Also relevant
          I agree RPJ. Also relevant imo is not approaching the question of evolution from the Western paradigm of reductionism, i.e. only considering genetic changes, but from a more eastern or holistic approach of taking in the whole picture, i.e. quantum mechanics, different theories of how the mind interacts with matter such as the holographic universe principle, etc… As you point out, evolution is most likely an incomplete model but in human’s hubris, we always tend to think our latest greatest theory or discovery is the pinnacle of knowledge only to find 20, 30, 40 years later how absurd, shortsighted & naïve those scientists were 20, 30, 40 years ago in light of new discoveries, and round and round we go…

        2. A fly by any other name . .
          First, thanks for the post.

          Second, while I agree that naming a thing/process doesn’t mean much, in this and other cases – I question whether the thing/process exists at all. It’s one thing to not completely understand that’s par for the course. It is quite another thing to mostly misunderstand.

            1. Evolution . ..
              [quote=red pill junkie]I’m not sure I follow. Are you saying you don’t think species evolve over time?[/quote]

              Not exactly. But okay let’s say more yes than no. Although to standard perception within human experience it does appears that is what’s going on.

              I’ll add that – although the Holy Fathers explain it away – even what is viewed within that perception are often sudden differences.

            2. Within human experience
              But evolution is not something humans experience within their lifetimes. It’s kinda slow…

            3. oh, that evolution
              Well, not all evolution is due to random mutation; there’s also hybridization. In fact, we may be seeing the creation of a new species in our own times. Thanks to climate change, polar and grizzly bears are now mating, and producing hybrids, some of which are fertile. This seems to me to be neither random, nor, as far as I can tell, due to divine intervention.

            4. Within human experience .
              [quote=red pill junkie]But evolution is not something humans experience within their lifetimes. It’s kinda slow…[/quote]

              Given that our discourse is on whether or not I think evolution (as commonly defined) is an actuality, I’ll have to sort of play with that comment.

              What is termed evolution is an interpretation based on standard human experience and perception. Human standard experience is of time in uni-directional linear fashion. The perception includes a construct of cause and effect. Those two factors are the primary ones in “constraining” the perception to see something termed evolution.

              And, if one subscribes to a materialist/physicalist view which posits time as both actual and absolute, aspects of evolution seem like a slam-dunk.

            5. Interpretation
              Man, you really seem to be the kind of person who carefully focuses ONLY on the things he disagrees about the other person’s argument…

              What I meant is that the fossil record we have at our disposal is like the single frames or drawings of an animation movie. They are static things, but if we had enough time we would perceive them as ‘moving’ in a continuous flow.

              Process, mechanism, choose the term you deem more appropriate. But nobody can deny that species do evolve over time. Now, as to what drives the change, that’s a whole different enchilada 😉

            6. Not an intepretation
              [quote=red pill junkie]Man, you really seem to be the kind of person who carefully focuses ONLY on the things he disagrees about the other person’s argument…

              What I meant is that the fossil record we have at our disposal is like the single frames or drawings of an animation movie. They are static things, but if we had enough time we would perceive them as ‘moving’ in a continuous flow.

              Process, mechanism, choose the term you deem more appropriate. But nobody can deny that species do evolve over time. Now, as to what drives the change, that’s a whole different enchilada ;)[/quote]

              First, since I’ve given you flak on the personal level . . I accept it back. 🙂

              But no . that’s not what is going on. I do disagree with the assertion that “species evolve over time” and I completely disagree with the idea about “changing in a continuous flow” That’s been my point all along.

              I’m not at all attempting to get you to agree with me but I do want to present clearly what I’ve been stating. Using the fossil “record” as an illustration – humans encounter visual evidence of differences and interpret that as indicating a somewhat continuous unidirectional change over a perceived absolute they term linear time. That’s not what is occurring.

            7. What is occurring
              Ok,so what do you think it’s occurring to species, that gives the impression of evolution through linear time?

            8. What is ocurring
              [quote=red pill junkie]Ok,so what do you think it’s occurring to species, that gives the impression of evolution through linear time?[/quote]

              It’s not about thinking – that too can only take one so far. I’d say that to allow yourself to perceive what I’m posting about it requires one to know/experience (or if not that to take an “allow for the possibility” approach) that linear time is a physical-level construct. It isn’t a root actuality- it doesn’t constrain the levels at which consciousness is creating physical expression.

    3. Awareness
      We had an interesting discussion about this very thing when Greg posted this photo of a moth that looks like a leaf. The mechanism of evolution is all good — but that’s the car, who’s driving? It can’t be random mutations, trial and error. For a fly to use spider camouflage shows it’s aware, at some level, of its environment. Or the environment is aware of it.

      There’s some kind of communication going on that we’re not aware of. We’re only just beginning to understand that trees can communicate with each other (through root systems and fungus networks). What else is there to discover, but the current scientific dogma is holding us back from?

      Science is a great tool, but mechanistic processes are only a part of the answer, not the whole. We can’t see the forest for the trees.

      1. Re; Awareness
        I agree with most of your post. The only difference between what you and I are expressing is that you view evolution as a mechanism, I view it as a flawed description based on very limited understanding.

        And it bears repeating – the current materialism/physicalism religion to which science has been shunted is not capable of moving beyond a very limited understanding.

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