Thursday, April 26, 2007

On This Day: Alfred Wallace Set Sail

From Today In Science History:
“In 1848, Welsh botanist Alfred Russell Wallace and Henry Walter Bates sailed from Liverpool for the Amazon. Their expeditions yielded insights into natural history and evolution for the both of them.

Wallace left earlier and collected in the Malay Archipelago. Wallace independently reached the same conclusions as Darwin regarding natural selection and wrote a paper read to the Linnaen Society on 1st July 1858.

Bates spent 11 years in Amazonia amassing large collections of insects that were sent back to museums and collectors in Europe. Bates was quick to embrace Darwin's and Wallace's theory of evolution by natural selection. Bates' own theory, Batesian mimicry, provided evidence for evolution by natural selection.”