Why does the presence of extinct and transitional forms in the fossil record support the pattern component of the theory of evolution by natural selection?

1 Answer
Apr 25, 2017

The presence of extinct and transitional fossils is used both to support the theory of evolution and to attack and bring the theory into question.


The alternative theory of punctuated equilibrium was proposed because of a lack of a pattern of a progression of transitional fossils.
The Darwinian and Neo Darwinian theory of evolution proposes a slow and uniform progress of organisms. The fossils record does not support that prediction.

The Cambrian explosion for example is not supported by evidence of transitional fossils. However the fossil record as a whole shows a progression from simple to complex fossils, with the simplest fossils found in the lowest levels of sedimentary layers.

The famous horse fossils sequence does show a pattern component of decent. The sequence does show evolution and adaptation of the organisms. It does not however support Darwinian evolution because the sequence shows a movement from complex structures to simple structures. So the horse fossil sequence does support the concept of evolution and progressive change. It doesn't support the concept of Neo Darwinian evolution. The Neo Darwinian theory of evolution prediction of the movement from the simple to the complex is not supported by the evidence.