The shocking truth about Charles Darwin

Why does Charles Darwin eclipse Alfred Russel Wallace?

 

_66026683_017009383-1

He jointly came up with the theory of evolution by natural selection, corresponded with the great and good of society, and was given the highest honour possible from a British monarch.

 

His correspondents included David Lloyd George, William Gladstone, Rudyard Kipling, George Bernard Shaw and Arthur Conan Doyle.

And on his death 100 years ago, obituaries were effusive in their praise, calling him the last of the great Victorians.

You would be forgiven for the name Charles Darwin popping into your head – but you would be wrong.

The theory of evolution by natural selection was published jointly between Darwin and Monmouthshire-born Alfred Russel Wallace, whose interest in natural history developed when he moved to Neath and worked as a land surveyor with his brother.

But while today Darwin is a household name synonymous with the theory, Wallace struggles to gain anywhere near the recognition of his friend.

This is illustrated by an appeal this year to raise funds for a life-sized bronze statue to honour Wallace – it only reached half of its £50,000 target.

 

Wallace expert Dr George Beccaloni, who is a curator at the Natural History Museum where the statue would stand, said: “We have enough money to pay for a torso and arms at the moment.

“There are hundreds of Darwin statues and busts but there’s not even a bust of Wallace.

“There’s a side-profile roundel on the wall at Westminster Abbey – not far from Darwin’s grave. There’s not a lot else.”

Interestingly, Wallace was not overlooked during his lifetime and was awarded the Order of Merit, the highest honour that could be given by the British monarch to a civilian.

His correspondents included some of the most significant politicians in recent British history, and celebrated authors and poets.

“He was extremely famous and possibly the most famous scientist and one of the most famous people in the world when he died (in 1913),” said Dr Beccaloni.

‘Grabbed the imagination’

“There were very long, glowing obituaries in all the world’s papers from Bombay to Boston saying he was the last of the great Victorians.

“One of the papers said only a great ruler would have had the sort of level of obituary recognition as Wallace.”

He said Darwin was more famous but died many years before Wallace leaving Wallace to go on and become “the most famous living biologist in Britain”.

So, where did it go wrong for Wallace’s reputation?

 

Prof Jim Costa, director of a biological research station in North Carolina, USA and an expert on both men, says part of the problem appears to be that Wallace failed to promote his role in formulating the theory as effectively as Darwin.

While they had jointly published the theory of evolution by natural selection in a paper in August 1858, it was Darwin’s On the Origin of Species the very next year that truly grabbed the public’s imagination.

Even one of Wallace’s own books appeared to pass on the credit for the discovery. It was called ‘Darwinism: An Exposition of the Theory of Natural Selection with Some of Its Applications’!

Prof Costa said another factor was what became known as the “eclipse of Darwinism”, when natural selection fell out of favour in the late 19th Century.

By the time it was revived in the 1930s, neither man was around and the world was a very different place.

“I think when this idea was resurrected in 1930 there was a new generation and they very much had Darwin on their minds,” said Prof Costa.

 

“Wallace I think had a role in this – his book ‘Darwinism’ for example. He tended to downplay his role in public forums and that just didn’t serve him well.

“When it [natural selection] was resurrected, it was always associated with Darwin.”

He said when evolutionary biology really took off in the 1940s, the history of the discovery had been largely forgotten.

A Darwin “industry” developed and, said Prof Costa, it viewed Darwin as the “great visionary”.

While little has changed since in terms of public acclaim, there are signs that Wallace’s work is gaining more recognition in certain circles.

A series of events are being held around the world to commemorate the centenary of Wallace’s death this year under the Wallace100 banner.

Renewed efforts

These include an exhibition in Swansea, a lecture in Berlin and a two-day conference in Malaysia.

Comedian Bill Bailey recently unveiled a restored portrait of Wallace at the Natural History Museum and has also filmed a two-part documentary for the BBC about Wallace.

Thousands of Wallace’s letters have been put online for the first time, including correspondence with Darwin about evolution by natural selection.

There is even hope for the statue with renewed efforts being made to raise the rest of the money by August.

But gaining the same level of acclaim as Darwin is another matter.

“I think that in the popular imagination, it would be very, very difficult. It’s indelibly Darwin and monkeys,” said Prof Costa.

“I don’t think there’s much we can do about that but I do think he will emerge from relative eclipse by Darwin, certainly in the broad academic world and the world of naturalists.

“He contributed so much.”

 

 

 

Via dolphin mentoring

After so many years training dolphins, some time ago during a training session, I stood up and looked around thought if only I could create a program to make a session easier, for the animals and for the trainers.

I thought that showing people how I used Operant Condition (positive reinforcement) would be a good opportunity to create a program much easier to understand and less complicated for all trainers. This would also ensure fair treatment of the animals by less experienced trainers, who could then use positive training techniques to achieve quicker results.

I realised that the process of learning so many techniques could be daunting for students, but with my help in explaining how they can build, using small steps at time, they will be successful. Many students don’t make it, due lack of patience, frustration, uncertainty, but with my mentoring program they will be more relaxed and be able to glide through my trainer’s training process.

As we already know the fittest, strongest animal is the one leading!!

A new trainer’s program would not be complete without noting the importance of them having a healthy life style to ensure they were fit enough to keep up with their demanding career.

My personal trainer has linked with Via Dolphin and has devised dietary information to assist trainers in getting all the nutrients they need, workout advise for optimum results, so they can keep healthy and strong and even suggested supplements that can assist with a healthy balanced diet.

We have launched a Trainers Fitness program to ease a trainers hectic daily life style.

 

For more information visit our FaceBook page @

https://www.facebook.com/viadolphinmentoring/?modal=admin_todo_tour

 

 

Self-Development – Independent Learning

SELF-DEVELOPMENT – INDEPENDENT LEARNING
Have you ever started to work in a Dolphinarium and seen others busy moving around doing different tasks and you don’t have any idea of what you should or could be doing?
How many times have wanted to learn or be given the opportunity to work hands on with the animals, but because of your lack experience you have been placed at the back of the line, waiting for your time to come?
When new staff start working in a Dolphinarium they must wait until management decides who they choose to work directly with the animals…and you could just be waiting and waiting.
What if I tell you, you can learn everything you need to know, even before you step into a Dolphinarium!
Imagine going straight in with the confidence and understanding, getting familiar with everything you need to know, including the training jargon trainers use to communicate with each other.
You don’t have to wait until someone teaches you the basics of what trainers are doing at any given time, or know what they need to do next.
Now you don’t have to wait or risk limited training you may access anywhere else.
With our self-educating courses, you can be a step ahead and be able to develop to your fullest potential.
You now can learn step by step what they may not teach you on the job or on the internet… the secrets, tricks and different techniques of marine mammal training.
For more information contact

viadolphin@hotmail.co.uk

 

Argus

Argus – California Sea Lion
Rescued: October 4, 2017
Released: October 25, 2017
Diagnosis: Leptospirosis

California sea lion Argus was rescued just a few miles from The Marine Mammal Center near a busy marina. Our veterinary experts determined that he was suffering from leptospirosis, a bacterial infection of the kidneys. Argus was one of several dozen California sea lions we treated for leptospirosis in 2017. Treatment for the potentially lethal infection includes antibiotics, fluids and other supportive care, such as gastro-protectants for stomach and intestinal ulcers. Once Argus had recovered fully from the disease, he was released back to the wild just steps from our hospital.