Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Mosaic Evolution

Concept that major evolutionary changes tend to take place in independent stages or trait clusters, not all at once. The fossil record for hominid evolution, for example, shows a mosaic pattern in the fact that smaller canine teeth, bipedal locomotion, larger brains, and tool use apparently did not all evolve at the same time. Mosaic evolution is thought to be the rule rather than the exception. Aka hologenism (2).

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