Posted: Jan 14, 2018 9:06 pm
by pelfdaddy
Uncertain Sloth provided a link which, though appreciated, led to information that was not especially detailed. I really am wondering about an evolutionary path to this odd mammalian trait.

This began when my wife thought that our puppy--a male--had an inflamed mole on his belly. I had to point out that it corresponded to another just like it on the other side (he has several rows of two) that happened to be covered by hair and less visible.

I just got to wondering about how this is explained in evolutionary terms.

I used to pay attention to the fact that it occurs in humans, forgetting about all the other species to whom it applies. I often ask religious believers if they would expect men to have nipples if we were created with a purpose in mind. I then suggest to them that an evolutionary process, characterized by trial and error, redundancy and systems on top of systems on top of fixes, corrections, and switchbacks, might be expected to produce something of this kind.

But I have to admit I have no idea how. I will take Safe's suggestion and go digging.