• Question: do you think we will become as equalle as all the animals over time??? :) ;)

    Asked by timms002 to Claire, Joanna, Kapila, Renata, Suzanne on 24 Jun 2013.
    • Photo: Joanna Bryson

      Joanna Bryson answered on 24 Jun 2013:

      Actually, even though people often talk about evolution as a competition “survival of the fittest”, in fact everything that’s alive now is currently winning the competition, or was until very recently. The animals we are “better than” are mostly all extinct. Although right now there is something funny happening, because both humans and also social insects (like ants) seem to be winning — there are more & more of them. It’s probably because we’ve learned to cooperate better than most other animals & that gives us an advantage (us & the ants both!) But now we have to figure out how to use some of our cleverness to give up some of our advantage & save more of the other animals (we already help pets & farm animals a lot). That’s because we’ve realised it’s important to have lots and lots of different things alive, because that makes the world more able to cope with change, and because every species is interesting and we can learn from it.

    • Photo: Claire El Mouden

      Claire El Mouden answered on 25 Jun 2013:


      When you say equal, are. You thinking of the fact that some people are very rich and some are very poor?

      If so, I would say that I think there will always be some level on inequality in human society – but I sincerely hope there will be less than there is now.

      In animals, there is a different sort of inequality which exists, as in many species, some individuals are very very successful and get to have lots of babies, and some lose out and have none. For example, in elephant seals, some males get to have 20 or more babies, yet about half the males never have any babies at all!