Posted: Dec 29, 2022 5:08 pm
by Spearthrower
The_Piper wrote:... I'm having trouble with where these behavioral changes are coming from in the future generations.

Not sure what you're referring to specifically, and it's just as likely I wouldn't have the answer, but I do think that an interesting example to consider is the flounder.

In its larval stage, it's an entirely typical bilaterally symmetrical open water swimmer, then as it enters adulthood, its body begins a bizarre process involving shifting its skeletal anatomy about as an eye migrates to the other side of its face, loses pigmentation on the soon-to-be underside of its body, and swims inefficiently at an intermediate angle for some time before settling down to become a bottom-feeder effectively laying on its side.

Even in the course of its lifetime, the flounder experiences behavioral changes that result from anatomical drivers, and what's particularly interesting is that experiments suggest that the flounder's brain is already wired up to be a flatfish from birth, so its behavioral development over the course of just one life is odder than can even be imagined.

My sense is that behavior - in the abstract - seems to us to be coordinated and natural, yet is in fact anything but so well determined. All organisms undergo dramatic behavioral development at an early age when their brains are most plastic and able to adapt. A puppy that loses a couple of legs can often adapt to running on two, for example, so the 'later behaviors' you mention aren't so much coming from somewhere past, as coming from what's there at that moment.