Foreign Invaders The July 2 issue of Science had an interesting article about the spread o

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Foreign Invaders Organization: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill From: kg anderson Message-ID: <> Newsgroups: The July 2 issue of _Science_ had an interesting article about the spread of marine organisms to other areas being facilitated by ships. When ships are empty the take on ballast water, which they dump when they reach their destination. The ballast contains lots and lots of little beasties--a sample of Japanese ballast released in Oregon contained 367 taxa, representing all marine trophic groups, and represented a wide variety of ecological communities (infaunal, epifaunal, epibiotic, and planktonic). The reason I'm bringing all of this up on t.o. is because it represents an excellent natural laboratory to test evolutionary hypotheses. The introduction of exotic lifeforms into any ecosystem poses the potential to upset a lot of ecological relation- ships. This of course follows directly from the theory of evolution; some of the new organisms will compete for resources better than those already there, and will displace or even replace the native fauna. On p. 80 of this issue there's a chart listing 45 species that have been introduced into new marine or freshwater environments via ballast water. Such examples are well known from terrestial ecology (see Crosby's recent (1989?) book, _Ecological Imperialism: The Biological Expansion of Europe 900-1900 AD_), but we're only just beginning to realize how important--and potentially threatening--this phenomenon is to marine ecosystems. Now, here's my main question: what do creationists make of such information? What would the Theory of Creationism (assuming one is ever formulated) predict given the invasion of foreign species into a marine habitat? Population genetics has all kinds of theories regarding founder effect, drift, etc., which c'ists seem to ignore or dismiss. But the fact that these phenomena are occurring in nature all around us (and not just in some geneticists computer) seems a stronger confirmation that ever in the Fundamentals of Evolution (Mr. Tun's assertions to the contrary notwithstanding). So how do c'ist get around this? Just curious References: Carlton, J.T. and J.B. Geller. 1993. Ecological Roulette: the Global Transport of Nonindiginous Marine Organisms. _Science_ 261: 78-82. Hedgpeth, J.W. 1993. Foreign Invaders. _Science_ 261: 34-35. kg anderson "Fine animal gorilla" -Koko


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