View Full Version : Chinchillas - Darwin had something backwards!

12th Apr 2002, 08:13
I have recently ended up living with a chinchilla, and this has set me thinking about Darwin's Evolution of the Species. There's no way chinchillas could have made it if that's all there is to it!

They're not very smart. She'll do death defying stunts, like falling into the waste bin, falling into my bowl of cornflakes (very annoying habit) and, when she lived with her previous flatmate, falling into the loo. Repeatedly.

They also set off on mindless dashes when an air molecule does something scary. This often happens after a period of intense staring at nothing, or into a wall.

They're too damn curious. Any predator with a taste for chinchillas would just have to lie down with its mouth open. Within fifteen minutes, the chinchilla would be compelled to investigate just what that thing down the throat of the predator is. End of story, end of rodent.

They can jump, that's true. Problem is, they're not very skilled at landing. In fact, they'll land short, overshoot or miss their landing spot alltogether. If they were flying, the CAAs of the world would be stumbling all over each other to ground them for sub-par performance.

They will happily parasite on us humans, eating everything they can find. Unfortunately, they specialise on electrical cables. The nutritional value is bad and the energy they absorb that way doesn't do them much good.

I can only find two things they really have going for them. They're very, very cute, and they can survive on grass that hasn't been green for a couple of decades in the middle of a desert.

I challenge all jetblasters to explain why they a) came into being and b) why they are still around.


(Eddited fore speeling)

12th Apr 2002, 09:07
Beacuse they're soooooooooo cute that big softies like you flop about looking after them and feeding them ;)

Cuteness itself looks like an excellent evolutionary strategy: all you have to do is be fluffy and act daft and someone else will look after you !

12th Apr 2002, 10:12
Obvious init... no selective pressure! :)
They evolved to survive in the conditions of their natural habitat. Not in this artificial world we Homo Sapiens have created.
There's no need for them to be wary of anything if they have no natural predators (as in the Dodo's case) :rolleyes:
******... problem with prooning at work is someone always wants to talk to you in the middle of writing a post...

...... to be continued! (maybe)

tony draper
12th Apr 2002, 11:08
That strategy doesn't seem to be workin for Tony Blaire now.
Was just thinking ,what with the Queen mums funeral, how may would file past our tones grave.
Be a bit worried about all the chaps pulling their zips down as they approached the grave, I would.:rolleyes:

12th Apr 2002, 11:53
Oh no, the secret is out! I'm a softie! *grin*

a voice of reason, indeed. Aren't you posting in the wrong forum? ;)

I'd say that it's typical for women to maintain a firm grip on reality in all situations, but that would probably be sexist (albeit I'm unsure about in which direction!) so I won't. To be honest, I'm rather impressed. Reality to me is just a place where people go and never send me postcards! :D

Reality would be a whole lot more interesting if my new religion with myself as the #1 supernatural entity would catch on though! Megalomania sure makes for a more interesting lifestyle.

Oh, and I still think that there should have evolved a really lazy predator with a raisin-looking appendage in its throat and a taste for chinchillas.


12th Apr 2002, 13:45
Ever eaten a chinchilla?



12th Apr 2002, 14:13
Ooops... sorry... :o Didn't mean to let the side down ;)

I have another suggestion, maybe more suitable for this forum. Their 'cuteness' is a defence.
For example: kids are cute, right? Everyone knows that. BUT... put me in the same room as one and I try and escape as fast as possible.
Maybe all the chinchilla's predators had this same mortal fear?

Another thought is that the name could have put possible chinchilla-eaters off. "Hey Henry, I'm not eating that for dinner. 'Twill make my neck cold".

Just a thought :rolleyes: