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 Natural selection, gene flow and random genetic drift (the random change in gene combinations with each generation) drive evolution, resulting in a change in gene frequencies within populations .
 Adaptation is genetically based and so leads to phenotypic changes that accumulate over time;  Speciation (species formation) evolves through reproductive isolation and (genetic) divergence of populations;  Genetic changes through natural selection lead to new species and eventually new taxa .
Living orders of placental mammals , be it bats, humanity, whales or camels, have as their common ancestor a small insectivore creature that went through a major phase of adaptive radiation during the Early Cenozoic Era .
We humans are first animals, then mammals, then primates.
Evolution only gained significant momentum after the theory of evolution, published by Charles Darwin in November 1859, implied that man was merely another product of life on earth, with origins shared by the other creatures and not its ultimate purpose. Wallace proposed the same theory at a joint presentation to the Linnaean Society in London .
I have integrated this web page on human evolution into an electronic text, " Nature's Holism - Holism.
Social forces appear to have directed much of the evolution of humanity but we are still subject to natural selection.
Primate taxonomy (see books: phylogeny, taxonomy, systematics) is in a state of flux due to the discoveries made in primate genetics.
africanus (Dart, 1925) (including small brained australopithecines) (see books), H.
erectus (including the Java and Peking hominids - the archetypal Missing Link) and H.