Male crickets chirp. They do it to attract a mate, so it's hard to imagine how they could evolve to lose the ability to chirp. But, of course, evolution has no need to be obviously intuitive and an environmental change which produces intense selective pressure can produce some surprising solutions. And, as there is more than one way of achieving the same thing, there is no reason why evolution should take on particular path and not another.
This was illustrated by a recent phenomenon seen in a species of Hawaiian cricket, Teleogryllus oceanicus, which on two islands in the Hawaiian archipelago have fallen silent, following an infestation by a parasitoid fly, Ormia ochracea. This fly uses the male cricket chirp to locate its victims and lay an egg on them. The grub then burrows into the body of the cricket, killing it within a week. The behaviour T. oceanicus had evolved to ensure continuation of its genes has provided O. ochracea with an opportunity to improve the success of its genes instead, and at the expense of those of T. oceanicus. There is no compassion in mindless evolution.
|T. oceanicus parasitised by O. ochracea|
Are there any proponents of intelligent design prepared to offer an explanation of why an intelligent designer would produce two different solutions to an identical problem given identical starting positions, leaving aside why an intelligent designer would have intelligently designed the problem in the first place?
Reference: Pascoal, S. et al; Rapid Convergent Evolution in Wild Crickets; Current Biology, 29 May 2014. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2014.04.053
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