Roger J. Wendell
Defending 3.8 Billion Years of Organic EvolutionSM


A 450 Million Year Old Trilobite from the Collection of Roger J. Wendell - 09-04-2006
Trilobite - 450 mya
Organic Evolution
3.8 Billion years of it!

Dictionary Definition:

"The doctrine that all forms of life have been derived by
  gradual changes from simpler forms or from a single cell."


Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page about Science in general...

Museum of Comparative Zoology Dr. Stephen Jay Gould to Roger J. Wendell - 12-13-2010 Stephen Jay Gould
"Well, evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world's data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts do not go away when scientists debate rival theories for explaining them. Einstein's theory of gravitation replaced Newton's, but apples did not suspend themselves in mid-air pending the outcome. And humans evolved from apelike ancestors whether they did so by Darwin's proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered."
- Stephen Jay Gould
Hen's Teeth and Horse's Toes p. 244.
  I had the good fortune to receive correspondence from Dr. Gould in late 1990. At that time I wrote him a letter (email
  was in its infancy back then) asking what he thought about the current rate of human-induced extinctions. This great
  scientist took time out of his busy schedule to not only respond with concern but to include a related article from the
  Sep '90 edition of Natural History (pp. 24 - 30)] - Roger J. Wendell


Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page about Paleontology...
Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page about Extinction...
Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page on Biology...
Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page on Life...


Charles Darwin - 1880 "Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved."
- Charles Darwin
The Origin of Species


"All complex life on earth has developed from simpler life-forms over billions of years. This is a fact that no longer admits of intelligent dispute. If you doubt that human beings evolved from prior species, you may as well doubt that the sun is a star. Granted, the sun doesn't seem like an ordinary star, but we know that it is a star that just happens to be relatively close to the earth. Imagine your potential for embarrassment if your religious faith rested on the presumption that the sun was not a star at all. Imagine millions of Christians in the United States spending hundreds of millions of dollars each year to battle the godless astronomers and astrophysicists on this point. Imagine them working passionately to get their unfounded notions about the sun taught in our nation's schools. This is exactly the situation you are now in with respect to evolution."
- Sam Harris
Letter to a Christian Nation, pp. 68-69


"Every wild species, even the lowly ant, is a masterpiece of evolution, as intricate
  and beautiful in its way as a bird of paradise, whale, or towering Douglas-fir."
- Edward O. Wilson
A Grassroots Jungle in a Vacant Lot
Wings (Essays on Invertebrate Conservation)
Spring 2007 pp. 17-18 (Originally Published in the Fall 1993 Issue)



Allan Gregg in Conversation with Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins
YouTube, October 27, 2009 (transcribed by Me!)

Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins AG: You use the words, time and time again, and I haven't noticed it in a lot of other work, that it's nonrandom selection. Explain to me why that's important.

RD: It's very important because the opposition to evolution very often comes from people who mistakenly think that it's a random theory.

AG: It's chaotic.

RD: Yes, they will think just because it's elegant and complicated and couldn't possibly come about by random chance; therefore it must have been designed. They think the only alternative to random chance is design and vice versa. Well, it's not. Natural selection is not random chance, and it's not design. It is nonrandom selection, nonrandom survival. The nonrandom survival of those organs, those genes, which work, which are nonrandom.

AG: Which are most adaptive to the environment that they're in at the time?

RD: Yes. It's extremely nonrandom; it's the epitome of non-randomness. If you seriously thought that the only alternative to design was random chance, well of course you wouldn't believe in random chance, it would be completely dopey to believe that living things were the result of random chance.

AG: And that's kind of were we started, for you there's majesty in that nonrandom basis of natural selection. Expand on that just a little bit more.

RD: There's majesty because of what it achieves, it is the greatest show on Earth. It's superb what has been achieved. There are mistakes, and very interesting mistakes, but nevertheless, the grace of a swallow's wing, the elegance of an eye or an ear, a running limb. Think of a cheetah or an antelope that it's pursuing these beautiful running machines. These are beautiful, elegant machines that have a powerful illusion of having been crafted and having been designed. And yet it isn't, yet it's come about by this unconscious, nonrandom, but nevertheless non-directed, unplanned mechanism. That is a staggeringly elegant thought.


In early 2012, while passing through Atlanta, Richard Dawkins was interviewed by CNN:
(Published on CNN's website September 6, 2012)

How do you think evolution should be taught to children?

You can't even begin to understand biology, you can't understand life, unless you understand what it's all there for, how it arose - and that means evolution. So I would teach evolution very early in childhood. I don't think it's all that difficult to do. It's a very simple idea. One could do it with the aid of computer games and things like that.

I think it needs serious attention, that children should be taught where they come from, what life is all about, how it started, why it's there, why there's such diversity of it, why it looks designed. These are all things that can easily be explained to a pretty young child. I'd start at the age of about 7 or 8.

There's only one game in town as far as serious science is concerned. It's not that there are two different theories. No serious scientist doubts that we are cousins of gorillas, we are cousins of monkeys, we are cousins of snails, we are cousins of earthworms. We have shared ancestors with all animals and all plants. There is no serious scientist who doubts that evolution is a fact.



Creationism Is Not Appropriate for Children
Bill Nye, the Science Guy, in an August, 2012 video release
where he panned biblical creationism and implored American
parents who reject the scientific theory of evolution not to
teach their beliefs to children:

Bill Nye "I say to the grownups, 'If you want to deny evolution and live in your world that's completely inconsistent with everything we've observed in the universe that's fine. But don't make your kids do it,'"

"When you have a portion of the population that doesn't believe in (evolution) it holds everybody back, really,..."

In his book, Undeniable (Evolution and the Science of Creation) Bill Nye wrote this:
"At some level, as an altruistic human (a consequence of my evolutionary heritage), I feel bad for the creationists. They have been left out of the wonderful process of science and its ability to reveal so much about nature. I'm heartbroken for their kids. On top of that, I feel bad for all of us. How did we let an ideological resistance to inquiry become such a prominent part of our society? How did we exclude so many people from the knowledge won with great sacrifice by our ancestors? Perhaps in the coming decades we can turn this around and include everyone - people in nonscientific fields and professions as well as the professional scientist, engineer, and educator. Perhaps by celebrating evolution, we can open minds and unlock more of our vast human potential." pp. 17-18



"Some biologists and philosophers have trouble with that term, 'evolutionary progress.' The expression is inexact and loaded with humanistic nuance, granted, but I use it just the same to identify a paradox pivotal to the understanding of biological diversity. In the strict sense, the concept of progress implies a goal, and evolution has no goal. Goals are not inherent in DNA. They are not implied by the impersonal forces of natural selection. Rather, goals are a specialized form of behavior, part of the outer phenotype that also includes bones, digestive enzymes, and the onset of puberty. Once assembled by natural selection, human beings and other sentient organisms formulate goals as part of their survival strategies. Because goals are the ex-post-facto responses of organisms to the necessities imposed by the environment, life is ruled by the immediate past and the present, not by the future. In short, evolution by natural selection has nothing to do with goals, and so it would seem to have nothing to do with progress."
- Edward O. Wilson
The Diveristy of Life, pp. 186-187


"53 Percent of Americans think the Universe is 6,000 years old and we have
no genetic precursors in the natural world apart from Adam and Eve."
- Sam Harris, in a 10/02/06 Talk of the Nation interview (see "Religion and Science" below)


"Humans are not the end all, be all of evolution, but merely a strand
in the web of life, with no inherent right to wreck everything and spoil
the grand evolutionary pageant for everyone else."

- John Johnson
EF! Journal, Samhain/Yule 2005, p. 43
"Humans are not the end result of predictable evolutionary progress, but rather a fortuitous cosmic afterthought, a tiny little twig on the enormously arborescent bush of life, which if replanted from seed, would almost surely not grow this twig again."

- Stephen Jay Gould


"Living organisms had existed on earth, without ever knowing why, for over three thousand million years before the truth finally dawned on one of them. His name was Charles Darwin."

- Biologist Richard Dawkins,
in his book, The Selfish Gene


"The fundamental evoluionary event is a change in the frequency of genes and chromosome configurations in a population. If a population of butterflies shifts through time from 40 percent blue individuals to 60 percent blue individuals, and if the color blue is hereditary, evoltuion of a simple kins has occurred. Larger transformations are accomplished by a great many such statistical changes in combination. Shifts can occur purely in the genes, with no effect on wing color or any other outward trait. But whatever their nature or magnitude, the changes in progress are always expressed in percentages of individuals within or among populations. Evolution is absolutely a phenomenon of populations. Individuals and their immediate descendants do not evolve. Populations evolve, in the sense that the proportions of carriers of different genes change through time. Theis conception of evolution at the population level follows ineluctably fromt hee idea of natural selection, which is the core of Darwinism. There are other causes of evolution, but natural selection is overwhelmingly dominant."
- Edward. O. Wilson
The Diversity of Life p. 75.


Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin
Stephen Jay Gould
Stephen Jay Gould
Stephen Jay Gould died on May 20, 2002 from a metastatic adenocarcinoma of the lung (lung cancer). Dr. Gould was the nation's preeminent evolutionary biologist and certainly doesn't need accolades or descriptions on my web page. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed many of his books and writings (Wonderful Life, Bully for Brontosaurus, The Flamingo's Smile, An Urchin in the Storm, Hen's Teeth and Horse's Toes, Ever Since Darwin, and others...) and also had the distinct privilege of corresponding with him once. It was sometime around 1990 that I wrote Dr. Gould asking what he thought of the current rate of extinctions due to human activity/interference. Much to my delight he wrote back expressing his sadness with the situation. I'm still looking through my files, for that letter, and will post it here once I find it again! - Roger J. Wendell summer, 2006


"These are some of the things hydrogen atoms do, given fifteen billion years of cosmic evolution."
- Carl Sagan, in his book Cosmos, p. 338


"Over 99 percent of the species that ever walked, flew, or slithered upon this earth are now extinct. This fact alone appears to rule out intelligent design. When we look at the natural world, we see extraordinary complexity, but we do not see optimal design. We see redundancy, regressions, and unnecessary complications; we see bewildering inefficiencies that result in suffering and death. We see flightless birds and snakes with pelvises. We see species of fish, salamanders, and crustaceans that have nonfunctional eyes, because they continued to evolve in darkness for millions of years. We see whales that produce teeth during fetal development, only to reabsorb them as adults. Such features of our world are utterly mysterious if God created all species of life on earth 'intelligently'; none of them are perplexing in light of evolution."

"The biologist J.B.S. Haldane is reported to have said that, if there is a God, He has 'an inordinate fondness for beetles.' One would have hoped that an observation this devastating would have closed the book on creationism for all time. The truth is that, while there are now around three hundred and fifty thousand known species of beetles, God appears to have an even greater fondness for viruses. Biologists estimate that there are at least ten strains of virus for every species of animal on earth. Many viruses are benign, of course, and some ancient virus may have played an important role in the emergence of complex organisms. But viruses tend to use organisms like you and me as their borrowed genitalia. Many of them invade our cells only to destroy them, destroying us in the process - horribly, mercilessly, relentlessly. Viruses like HIV, as well as a wide range of harmful bacteria, can be seen evolving right under our noses, developing reistance to antiviral and antibiotic drugs to the detriment of everyone. Evolution both predicts and explains this phenomenon; the book of of Genesis does not. How can you imagine that religious faith offers the best account of these realities, or that they suggest some deeper, compassionate purpose of an omniscient being?"

- Sam Harris
Letter to a Christian Nation, pp. 75-76


"Mr. Scopes, the jury has found you guilty under this indictment, charging you with having taught in the schools of Rhea county, in violation of what is commonly known as the anti- evolution statute, which makes it unlawful for any teacher to teach in any of the public schools of the state, supported in whole or in part by the public school funds of the state, any theory that denies the story of the divine creation of man, and teach instead thereof that man has descended from a lower order of animals. The jury have found you guilty."
- Judge John T. Raulston: Tennnessee v John Scopes,
                                Dayton, July 17th, 1925


"Nowadays, in thrall to constituencies of unreason, zealots of all stripes are chipping away at evolutionary science. In our own country, 'creationism' and 'intelligent design' are now considered suitable topics for instruction in science, as if these notions were as testable as the perfect gas laws of Boyle (pV = nRT) or the Hardy-Weinberg equation (p2 + 2pq + q2 = 1) of population genetics." p. 10

"Of course, evolutionary theory may be only one of several explanations for life on our planet, but it's the only theory that has held up against disproof. And however much we think we know of evolution today, it must be a minute faction of what remains to be discovered tomorrow. Finally, I'd argue that the facts of evolution impose a kind of necessity on the chance of our imagination, they cut short many a tall tale. Experimental science is our defense - perhaps our best def3ense - against humbug and the Endarkenment." p. 12

- Gerald Weissmann from his book,
Galileo's Gout (Science In An Age of Endarkenment)




   Religion and Science
Bumpersticker: We Have the Fossils. We Win

"I can tell you, I'm getting a PhD in Neuroscience, there's no point in the training to become a scientist where somebody sits you down and says, okay, all of these dogmas you're holding onto, that are religious, need to be talked about and subjected to the same tests of credulity that we're going to subject all of your other scientific beliefs to. I mean it's just not a conversation that gets had, it's taboo."

"In the Christian West you can get a PhD in biochemistry and not believe in Evolution and that's a problem of discourse, it really is a massive problem of conversations not being had."

- Sam Harris interviewd by Michelle Martin on NPR's Talk of the Nation
about his new book, Letter to a Christian and keeping religion out of public policy.
Broadcast on Monday, October 02, 2006 and transcribed by Roger J. Wendell




Human Evolution

6 to 7 million year old Sahelanthropus Tchadensis - Toumai "The apes are our closest living relatives. The bigger species - chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans - are referred to as great apes. Within the great apes, chimpanzees are most closely related to humans, and gorillas slightly more distant from us. Darwin recognised the close relationship of humans to African apes and predicted that the earliest human fossils would be found in Africa. He was right.

"Because great apes are closely related to us, they are usually classified within the human family. Hominidae. This book focuses on a narrower group, Hominini, which means specifically the fossil species that are more closely related to us than chimpanzees are. (In other places, you may see the name 'hominid' used in the same narrow sense that this book uses 'hominin - the difference is just the names and reflects an older taxonomy in which apes were excluded from the human family.)

"It is easy to make the mistake of thinking that the apes are a uniform group, when in reality great difference exist among them. Chimpanzees are fascinating to us because of their complex social relationships and their tendency to show many 'human' behaviours. Gorillas are much bigger in size, and they eat leaves more frequently than the other apes, who mostly eat fruit. Orangutans and gibbons (gibbons are so-called 'lesser apes') each have their own unique ways of moving around through trees, and have exceptionally long arms.

"Despite differences like these, apes share a variety of features - for example, all apes lack tails, and so do humans. Apes also have relatively larger brains than most other primates. They have projecting faces and long canine teeth as well, but in these respects they are like many other primates.

"How, then, do we think of the earliest hominins - the earliest human ancestors? Early hominins are often described as 'bipedal apes' because they were ape-like in the general appearance of their skulls and their relative brain size. At some point in human evolution, we cross a threshold where we begin to think of our ancestors as more like us, showing more of the distinctive features that arise during human evolution. It is worth keeping in mind that this is a subjective decision - what is ape, and what is human? There is no definite line between these categories, and as we go through the variety of hominin species, the question becomes more and more difficult to answer." p. 19


"The name Paranthropus means roughly 'equal to' or 'like' humans, and the name robustus conveys the impression of large teeth and chewing muscles that has lasted as a general description of this group. The name in this case conveys a real meaning. The species P. robustus is not one of our direct ancestors but is simply near us in the evolutionary tree. In many ways, this makes species such as P. robustus more interesting, because it shows that human evolution was not a single path towards modern humans, but instead a more complicated and diverse array of forms. There is more than one way to be a hominin." pp. 48-50


"Paranthropus aethiopicus is one of those species that illustrates the patter of 'mosaic' evolution. This term is used to describe a pattern when features evolve independently and evolve multiple times. A broader example is the separation of human bipedalism and human brains size. We may think of humans as large-brained, bipedal primates, but we became bipeds long before brains reached anything like the size they are now. Human evolution displayed a mosaic pattern instead of a simple progression from one thing to the next." p. 57
- Charles Lockwood, Ph.D.
from his book, The Human Story
(Where We Come From & How We Evolved)


Donald R. Prothero "...the biases of anthropologists for most of that twentieth century was that brain size was the most important factor influencing human evolution and that features like bipedal erect posture came later. Yet most of the hominins whose fossils have been found in the past 30 years, from 'Lucy' to Ardipithecus to Ororrin were clearly fully bipdeal, but had small brains. Now Sahelanthropus, the oldest hominin fossil yet discovered, also shows evidence that its skull sat directly above its spine. Bipedalism is one of the first adaptation that occurred in human evolution, long before our brains got big."

- Donald R. Prothero from his book,
The Story of Life in 25 Fossils (Tales of Interepid
Fossil Hunters and the Wonders of Evolution), p. 340




Carbon Dating

Oredont Ulma by Roger J. Wendell - circa 2000 "...carbon-14 is created by cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere, which slowly circulate into our air. All living creatures that process carbon, both plants and animals, take in the carbon-14 (along with the much more common carbon-12). The ratio of carbon-14 to carbon-12 in our bodies (or stems) is fixed at the same ratio as in the atmosphere overall."

"That is, until we die."

"After death, the carbon-14 starts to decay into nitrogen with a half-life of about fifty-seven hundred years. Anything that used to be alive, or anything made from something that used to be alive, can be sampled. Since the carbon-14 decays, but the carbon-12 is quite stable, by measuring the ratio today and comparing it to the ratio of the two in the atmosphere, we can measure how long something's been dead. Though carbon dating has been used as a very effective tool in archaeology and paleontology, it is fundamentally based on quantum physics."
- Dave Goldberg and Jeff Blomquist
in their book, A User's Guide to the Universe,
Chapter 3 (Randomness), p. 79




Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for my page on Creation Theories...


Denver Museum of Nature and Science

We joined my brother and his friend on a visit to Denver's Museum of Nature and Science on September 2nd, 2006. Their evolution and pre-history displays are simply fantastic! Also interesting, but unfortunate, I learned that certain Christian groups make repeated visits and challenge the volunteer presenters about the museum's interpretation of natural history. Luckily these folks are much more calm and controlled than I would be and simply stand there and take it with a smile. Anyway, whether you have a chip on your shoulder or not, I highly recommend Denver's Museum and provide these few snapshots of their display as both an incentive to visit and a rough explanation of evolution:

Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Recipe for Life
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Origin of Life
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Cell DNA
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
First Nucleus
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Ocean Life
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Natural Selection
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Peppered Moths
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
First Flowers
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006
Fossil Flowers
Denver Museum of Nature and Science DNA - 09-02-2006

Denver Museum of Nature and Science Life in A Lab - 09-02-2006 Denver Museum of Nature and Science Replicating Life - 09-02-2006
Replicating Life in a Lab...
Stanley Miller was a doctoral student working with Harold C. Urey at the University of Chicago, researching possible environments of early Earth. In 1953 he reproduced the early atmosphere of Earth by creating a chamber with only hydrogen, water, methane, and ammonia. Miller used an electric discharge to simulate lightning and, after just a week, had a residue Organic compounds settled in the system.
Most notable of these compounds were the amino acids, the "building blocks of life," that had formed in Miller's system. Amino acids are necessary for the formation of proteins which form the structure of cells. Miller found glycine, alanine, aspartic, glutamic acid, and other amino acids in the sytem. Fifteen percent of the carbon from the methane had been combined into organic compounds. As amazing as his discovery of amino acids was, it was even more astonishing how easily they had been formed in the system!

Miller's work showed that compounds necessary for life could have been formed in an environment without free oxygen - similar to Earth's early atmosphere. The creation of amino acids from Earth's raw materials may been the begining of evolution. Miller's results also suggests the possibility that similar amino acids could have formed elsewhere, in the Universe, since the Earth's early atmosphere was based on proportions of elements in the Universe...




Yellow Flower by Roger J. Wendell Life, living systems, and evolution are fascinating to me. Admittedly, these are huge subjects that can be hard to understand at times. Nevertheless, the beauty of our natural world is more wonderful and special than anything our little human institutions could ever invent or imagine. So, I'll be adding bits and pieces to this page about that strangely beautiful dance of organic evolution that's been gracing our planet for the last 3.8 billion years!

Sadly, of course, I'm writing this during one of the darker periods of American history. Our government and society has been taken over by a destructive form of fundamentalism that not only mocks scientific effort, but has no respect for beauty and the natural world. So, hopefully, my little web page will help reverse this damaging aspect of our collective psyche so that nature and the real world can heal a bit and continue on as the arena for evolution.

- Roger J. Wendell
Golden, Colorado - Spring 2006




DNA Moving
(deoxyribonucleic acid)
adenine thymine guanine cytosine




Intellugent Desine In the early 2000s, when I was creating these pages, "Intelligent Design" seemed to be growing in popularity, especially among the religious right. I'm not sure what it's all about but hope to report, here, what I learn. Initially I'm very skeptical because this particular little "theory" seems to be an attempt to reinforce religious beliefs while thumbing its nose at thought, reason, and scientific inquiry in general. Hopefully the government, or anyone else, won't attempt to force the idea of "Intelligent Design" on the rest of us but stranger things have happened...
- Roger J. Wendell




Respeta la Vida (Respect Life!) Mendoza, Argentina Zoo - 01-23-2004 Miscellaneous Definitions:
  • Adaptive radiation - the spread of species of common ancestry into different niches.
  • Angiosperms - Plants that flower and form fruits (ovary) with seeds (the Earth's most common plant form) - see Gymnosperms below.
  • Allelopathy - Root secretions that kill other plants.
  • Biomimicry - Is (from www.BioMimicry.org):
    • Is a new science that studies nature's models and then imitates or takes inspiration from these designs and processes to solve human problems, e.g., a solar cell inspired by a leaf.
    • Uses an ecological standard to judge the "rightness" of our innovations. After 3.8 billion years of evolution, nature has learned: What works. What is appropriate. What lasts.
    • Is a new way of viewing and valuing nature. It introduces an era based not on what we can extract from the natural world, but on what we can learn from it.
  • Detritivore - An animal that feeds on animal and plant waste or remains, sequentially reducing the particle sizes so that the true decomposers, bacteria and fungi, can break them down to their constituent chemical parts for recycling in the ecosystem.
  • Endophytes - "within plant," from the Greek, fungi and bacteria living inside of leaves and needles.
  • Epiphytes - "air plants" that depend on trees or other plants for support, but not nutrients.
  • Evolutionary convergence - is the occupation of the same niche by products of diffeent adaptive radiations.
  • Gymnosperms - Plants whose seeds are not enclosed by a ripened ovary (fruit) - see Angiosperms above. An example would be a typical pine cone.
  • Lignin - comprises as much as one fourth of the volume of wood, acting like a cement holding the cellulose, pectin and related polysaccharides together (It is lignin that lends the vanilla odor to fresh sawdust).
  • Phanerozoic Eon - The half-billion-year stretch of time, up to and including today, after the Proterozoic (bleow). This is the period where the fossils of complex organisms can be found.
  • Precautionary Principle - In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied by States according to their capabilities. Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation.? [Article 15 of the Rio declaration of 1992]
  • Proterozoic Eon - The two-billion-year stretch of "early life" prior to the Phanerozoic (above).
  • Punctuated Equilibrium - a term developed by evoluntionary biologists to define nature's patterns of sudden pulses of speciation and extinction, followed by long periods of more subdued evolutionary activity.
  • Rhizome - a lateral, underground root system, sending out above-ground shoots to forma vast network.
  • Saprotrophs - fungi or bacteria that live on and help decay dead organic matter.




I've got mail!
(you can also check out my Guest Book for
thoughts and notes from other visitors...)

Mail Here's a little note I received from the Institute for Creation Research on April 13, 2007. In defense of Mr. Sherwin, my immediate response was that we'd need to revisit the idea a few months later as I was preoccupied with follow-up medical visits for a previous diagnosis of bladder cancer. Well, those few months passed and I telephoned (a couple of times!) the Institute for Creation Research to tell 'em I was ready to "chat" about evolution in a public forum right here in Colorado. I suggested that my radio show might be the best venue. Funny, I never heard back from them...
Hi Roger -

I read your website and I'd like you to support your position in a formal, public debate with me. It has to be somewhere in Colorado.

Please contact CONNIE Pxxxx at the Institute for Creation Research: 619) 448-xxxx and tell her I contacted you regarding a debate. She'll tell you what nights I'm free.

Looking forward to it!

- frank sherwin

I also sent an email, on August 7th (2007), to back up my phone calls:

Whenever you're ready we can give the discussion a try on
my part-time radio show - it's up to you!

Looking forward,



"In 2005, a survey was conducted in thirty-four countries measuring the percentage of adults who accept evolution. The United States ranked thirty-third, just above Turkey. Meanwhile, high school students in the United States test below those of every European and Asian nation in their understanding of science and math. These data are unequivocal: we are building a civilization of ignorance."
- Sam Harris
Letter to a Christian Nation, p. 70


Darwin's Birthday - February 12, 1809





  1. Animals and wildlife
  2. Ant Web
  3. Backyard Wildlife
  4. Biodiversity
  5. Biology
  6. Biomimicry
  7. Bioneers
  8. Cosmology
  9. Creation Theories
  10. Deep Ecology
  11. Extinction
  12. Game of Life by John Conway (1970)
  13. GMOs and Cloning
  14. Hunting
  15. ICZN International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature
  16. iNaturalist.org - Connect with Nature
  17. Insects
  1. Life
  2. NCSE - National center for Science Education
  3. Nukes
  4. Oreodont Ulma
  5. Paleontology
  6. Plants
  7. Prairie Dogs
  8. Science Stuff
  9. Super-predatory humans and our impact on evolution
  10. Time
  11. Travel and Two
  12. Understanding Evolution
  13. WIPS - Western Interior Paleontological Society
  14. WikiSpecies - A free directory of life! (Because life is in the public domain!)
  15. Wilderness Defense!
  16. World Charter for Nature - United Nations
  17. Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation




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