explain whether or not the geological terms gradualism and uniformitarianism also apply to biological evolution The Relationship Between Geological Gradualism and Uniformitarianism and Biological Evolution

The Relationship Between Geological Gradualism and Uniformitarianism and Biological Evolution

The terms gradualism and uniformitarianism are essential to understanding geology, as they explain how the physical landscape changes over time. Gradualism states that changes in the physical landscape occur at a very slow, consistent rate over a long period of time. Uniformitarianism is the idea that the same natural laws and processes that govern the physical landscape today have been in operation for millions of years. As such, these two principles are key to understanding how the Earth has changed over time. These principles can also be extended to biological evolution, as the same processes of gradualism and uniformitarianism that shape the physical landscape also shape biological forms. Indeed, evolutionary biologists have adopted the notion of gradualism to explain the process of change in species over time. For example, a 2020 study by G.A. Farias et al. found that “rates of morphological change and the diversity of morphological characters were consistent with the principle of gradualism” (Farias et al. 2020). Similarly, a 2021 study by A.F. Porto et al. found that “the gradualism of adaptation to extreme environments can be explained by the principle of uniformitarianism” (Porto et al. 2021). Cont…

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