Sunday, May 19, 2024

Odd Fish Are the Ones Who Need a Bigger Pond

Take one regulatory gene
Highly associated with
A tendency to explore and
Let loose in an environment

With a range of empty niches—
Watch adaptive radiation
Radiate into all of them.
That’s one regulatory gene,

Triggering greater tendency
To explore what is new—voila!
In an open environment
You’ve got an adaptive syndrome,

And pretty soon you’ve got species,
Colorful and oddball versions
Of the last common ancestor
Everywhere, glittering, galore.

Elsewhere, of course, it’s quite likely
The same gene, or something like it,
Hides in behaviors dull as mud,
Nowhere to dazzlingly explore.

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