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View Poll Results: Is it possible to create a species of megafauna through selective breeding?
Yes 23 71.88%
No 9 28.13%
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:24 AM   #1
luvs2gro
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Lightbulb Selective Breeding and Giant Lizards:

Hey guys.

This, is megalania prisca he was a super bad ass lizard, basically the same as the modern goanna/monitor lizards but massive.


He was not the only animal in history that is basically a gigantic copy of similar animals. (megalania/lace monitor) this was actually a common occurrence among many different species of animals, that evolved after the fall of the dinosaurs. (basically once dinosaurs went extinct the opportunity arose for mammals, amphibians and other such creatures to grow and evolve to the size of dinosaurs.) We called this "Pleistocene Megafauna"

However don't confuse with the modern megafuana, such as elephants or hippoes.
Megafauna: Mega = large, fauna = animal = large animal



I don't know if you are aware or not, but the average komodo dragon is about the size of a lion This mofo was bigger than dairy cows. Megalania also had venomous pouches in his mouth making him the largest venomous vertebrae we know existed. You did not want to mess with him. What I am getting at is, humans use to co-exist with this monster lizard in Australia. Some people give megalania credit to being the origin of dragons.





TL;DR

Dinosaurs got wiped out, mammals, other reptiles and, amphibians got the opportunity to step into the slot of "New biggest and baddest creatures" and after thousands of generations of breeding they eventually grew into megafuana from the Pleistocene epoch. (giant beavers, giant sloths, giant birds, all kinds of giant shit that slowly went extinct as humans began to expand across the planet.) One of the creatures was Megalania; a real life dragon/godzilla/reptar which co existed with the human race until about 40,000 years ago.


END TL;DR

Now, lets pause for a moment. Are you familiar with Foster's Rule? or "The Island Rule" ? If so continue on to the next section, if you don't know what it is; it is a principle of evolutionary biology that states species will get either smaller or bigger according to the available resources on the island.

"It was first stated by J. Bristol Foster in 1964 in the journal Nature, in an article titled "The evolution of mammals on islands". In it, he studied 116 island species and compared them to their mainland varieties. He proposed that certain island creatures evolved into larger versions of themselves while others became smaller versions of themselves. For this, he proposed the simple explanation that smaller creatures get larger in the absence of the predators they had attracted on the mainland and larger creatures become smaller with the absence of food sources"

I am no biologist and I am not claiming megalania's existence was because it lived on an island. (Come on guys Australia is just a giant island) I believe it exists because of evolution, which is also known as natural selection.

Now, if these creatures have existed once through natural evolution, what if they were recreated through unnatural evolution (ie, selective breeding) The process of isolating genes and breeding certain traits in and out of the species, The whole point of this post comes down to this question: As humans can we use natural selection to breed giant animals? Naturally I look at the evolution of dogs (they mapped out the Canines Genome and found that all dogs come from wolves, after thousands and thousands and thousands of rounds of selective breeding we transformed a wolf into a chihuahua) Can we take it the other way and breed only the largest of the species and eventually transform it into a megafauna?

Some people (not me) think Megalania never went extinct and it still lives in Australia. I have seen zero evidence to support this; there are no tracks or carcass's or any other form of evidence. The closest thing we have to evidence is hundreds of testimonials, but if I am correct, the megalania is popular in cryptozoology and urban myths in Australia. it becomes a situation like the debate of the existence of big foot, no evidence other than blurry pictures or some stories of campers/hikers/hunters who are most likely making it up (Jane Goodall believes there is undoubtedly some sort of giant primate that lives in the forests of North America which is very interesting but that is a topic for another day.)

Humans have experimented with cloning extinct animals and we have actually successfully cloned extinct species back to life before (a species of deer, from a while ago maybe couple thousand years or so, successfully cloned from preserved DNA, although it died 7 minutes after birth due to lung defect) Instead of ressurecting Megalania through cloning, is it possible to recreate or create new species of megafuana through selective breeding?

I know this may seem trivial "why make a giant animal" "it would take so long" "blahblahblah" but I am speaking theoretically, if we had to could we do it? This subject is very interesting to me, same with anything related to extinct animals or dinosaurs, if you have similar questions or ideas or thought experiments post them here

Last edited by luvs2gro : 01-17-2013 at 06:29 AM.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:26 AM   #2
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You really need to google TL;DR
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:26 AM   #3
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why is there a TL;DR in the middle of this shit followed by a wall of text???

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Obsceneairwaves
why is there a TL;DR in the middle of this shit followed by a wall of text???



the tldr is not for the wall of text its for the info about megalania and megafauna...\\\

Goooolll guys!

EDIT: dont come here to criticize my summary of megafauna and megalania contribute to the thread or dont post please!

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:43 AM   #5
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Is that a stuffed animal avatar? It looks like a stuffed animal.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:46 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mystical_1
Is that a stuffed animal avatar? It looks like a stuffed animal.



EDIT: attached below is a pic of my cat with bread on its face, I did it for a deathsquad contest in which red ban retweeted this pic to all his followers. Now please no more off topic posts by any body or I will take my inquiries else where

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:48 AM   #7
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no

im sure you can create a similar creature but nowhere near the actual thing

EDIT: not that i have any idea what im on about

EDIT: not that i read the op
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:50 AM   #8
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We should make monster corn


Tyrantocornus Rex is upon us!!!
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:51 AM   #9
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:54 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Burgery
no

im sure you can create a similar creature but nowhere near the actual thing

EDIT: not that i have any idea what im on about


Do you think its possible to do with any species, not just lizards? I guess the goal isnt to recreate a megalania they were just my example. the goal would be to take a species of animal and make them giant eventually, regardless of the amount of time it would take to breed them that large, possible?

Thanks for the input, Maybe some day I will get a scholarship to set up an experiment that ranges over thousands of generations to see if we get desired results.


Does any one know of software that simulates evolution? not like that cell game but some sort of program that shows a sped up process of evolution? in which you can select certain traits to use and get rid of

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We should make monster corn


Tyrantocornus Rex is upon us!!!

We kind of already did, we unintentionally created corn by planting the strongest and largest wheats over and over again for thousands of generations.... I think!

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:55 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
bro its a pic of my cat with bread on its face, if you want the large version il PM it to you, otherwise you best start talking about the possibilities selective breeding or get outta here




Alright then. When you see small or super tall humans, it is usually a genetic defect or disease.

Among other factors, Darwin believed that species could be affected by their environment, such as by diet, etc... beaks would change, body shape, etc...

My point: I think we can probably change things genetically once we isolate defects, a lot easier than attempting to do it through their environment. If that is what we were striving to do.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:57 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
Do you think its possible to do with any species, not just lizards? I guess the goal isnt to recreate a megalania they were just my example. the goal would be to take a species of animal and make them giant eventually, regardless of the amount of time it would take to breed them that large, possible?

that seems entirely plausible

but really

i donno lol
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:58 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
EDIT: dont come here to criticize my summary of megafauna and megalania contribute to the thread or dont post please!




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Old 01-17-2013, 06:59 AM   #14
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I don't think it would work well. They got so big in part because it was cold and bigger bodies dealt with cold better. It's warm now, and getting warmer, so they'd have trouble dissipating heat.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:00 AM   #15
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I don't think it would work well. They got so big in part because it was cold and bigger bodies dealt with cold better. It's warm now, and getting warmer, so they'd have trouble dissipating heat.

they could be put in a cold environment brah

isnt that what this thread is about

edit: if we're only talking about selective breeding this probably wouldnt work all that well

edit: id like to reinstate the fact taht i dont know what im talking about

i should put a disclaimer in my sig or something
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:08 AM   #16
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lol thanks for all the replies everyone I am getting a kick out of this thread.

Maybe to clarify: suppose you are a scientist and you are getting paid a substantial amount of money to do what no man has done before. 1. Find the traits that make animals grow and maintain enormous sizes. 2. Use the traits to create a species of mega fauna

you have a controlled enviroment, if you need them to have more or a limited amount of food or other resources you are capable of controlling that, same with the weather and temperature. You have scientists lined up to inherit the experiment as it may take a while to see any significance in the size of the species

personally I chose "yes" on the poll because I think it would take a long time but eventually if you kept using selective breeding you would in fact create a new species of mega fauna

EDIT: it is 4 a.m. here, I am going to catch some sleep but I will come back tomorrow.
Thanks to every one who replied I like hearing what other people have to think about this subject

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Old 01-17-2013, 07:17 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
"why make a giant animal"

Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
This, is megalania prisca he was a super bad ass lizard, basically the same as the modern goanna/monitor lizards but massive.

You just answered your own question.

To answer your other question, yeah you can probably recreate something similar by isolating traits (i.e. being huge and badass).

Also congratulations on writing a wall of text I actually read, and also for that glorious picture of your cat.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:19 AM   #18
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Makes me wonder if gravity would eventually work against ya.

I still believe that you can circumvent that process by isolating genetic disorders that have to do with size and manipulating those genes to the end you are looking for, much easier and quicker, if your goal is to create a larger species of something, or smaller.

Dwarfism for example. I think it will be something that can be altered, someday, probably soon at the rate they are going with genetics.

I know this is not exactly what you are asking but it just seems like a much simpler way to get from point a to b.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:26 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvs2gro
1. Find the traits that make animals grow and maintain enormous sizes.

Implying we don't know that already.

What you're proposing is quite possible with the right amount of effort, if your only criteria are for it to be 'huge' and 'lizardlike'. It's impossible to predict the exact outcome due to evolution's random nature though, so if you want an exact replica of megalania prisca then cloning would be your only option.

Quote:
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Makes me wonder if gravity would eventually work against ya.

I still believe that you can circumvent that process by isolating genetic disorders that have to do with size and manipulating those genes to the end you are looking for, much easier and quicker, if your goal is to create a larger species of something, or smaller.

Dwarfism for example. I think it will be something that can be altered, someday, probably soon at the rate they are going with genetics.

I know this is not exactly what you are asking but it just seems like a much simpler way to get from point a to b.

At a certain point gravity (among other things) will indeed start working against you. Usually acquiring enough energy to keep the body functioning starts becoming a problem, because the 'upkeep costs' are just too damn high.

Genetic modification in a lab would indeed probably be faster and easier than selective breeding (please remember that the two are essentially the same though).

For most (if not all) forms of dwarfism we already know which genetic defects are responsible, so I don't think we're all that far from finding a way to 'cure' it.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:29 AM   #20
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