Here, in the Central Plains we are surrounded by some of the best documented fossil evidence for the evolution of major lines of organisms. Fossil evidence for the evolution of horses has long been used to promote public understanding of evolution–and just as often used to promote particular hypotheses of how evolution works in the later part of the 1800’s into the 1900’s. A couple of years ago, KABT’s spring field trip was to Ashfall State Park in NE Nebraska.
There, in addition to in situ rhinoceros fossils you’ll find a selection of 5 different species of horse fossils. When one of the KABT members in attendance checked out the following display along with the fossil barn, she exclaimed, “How could anyone looking at this evidence doubt that evolution has occurred?”
KABT is planning on returning to Ashfall next spring so that more KABT members can experience this great resource. In the meantime the reason for this post is that I recently came a great synopsis and discussion about the history of our understanding of horse evolution as well as an update of where we are today. Check out “The Branching Bush of Horse Evolution” at “Laelaps” blog.