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Watching the Evolution

I had a long cherished wish to watch the evolution in the making. But lifespan of us humans is infinitely short to witness the events taking place during the evolution which span over thousands or sometimes million years. But my desire grew with time. So I many a times felt anguished and helpless. We are living in a time when it is quite easy to access information. On the scientific front, there are wonderful instrument which are available making the life of a scientist comparatively easy. Think of the times, when Darwin, Newton, Kekule did their research. They were the really creative and genius people.

For a time assume I have been granted the power to travel back in time without affecting my present form. I remain the same. I have also been enabled to reach where ever I wish to in this universe. So I am flying on the wings of thoughts. I hover over some islands of Hawaii. The time is 5 millions years ago. What do I see?

The island is reeling under a very powerful hurricane. The trees are uprooted and being flung like light toys. The birds, especially those dwelling in the trees are swept away. As the fury of hurricane is spent, there are ruins everywhere. Devastation is all around. But there are birds called “Pollenpeepers” which have successfully weather the storm. One reason for their survival is that they live in the bushes nearer the ground.

So now it is the aftermath of the hurricane. Life again sprouts. Due to the sweeping away of so many birds, the pressure on the pollen peepers is relieved. They find plenty to eat and begin to spread across the whole island. 1 million years go by.

Still the pressure is low. But the climate in the North and South of the island is becoming disparate. While North is wetter, the south is dry. In the North, the tall trees are flourishing while in the South it is bushes all around. The birds in the North eat insects in the Northern part and seeds in the South as the availability is such. The birds are assuming different features. For example, the beaks of the birds in the Northern part are becoming narrower suitable to catch insects whereas the Southern cousins have wider beaks to hold the seeds. Another million years go by.

The weather in the South takes a turn. It is becoming wetter like Northern part. hovering above, I see more and more clouds and rains in the South now. The bushes are being replaced by the taller trees. Availability of seeds is decreasing causing problems for the birds in the South. As the weather is becoming like the North, I can see the birds in the from North migrating to south also. The situation for southern birds is becoming very testing.

Now they are being outnumbered and decimated. The birds with narrow beaks are climbing another echelon of the evolutionary ladder. In the present times, I can see only the birds with narrow beaks dominating the whole island. I salute the Darwin who once carried out his work in these islands although those were very tough times and it was not easy to express such revolutionary evolutionary ideas.

It is all magical. I have seen a glimpse of the evolution in the making. I am again back to original self. but I feel how minuscule is our entity in the scheme of nature’s grand play.

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