from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Plural form of exaptation.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
I have come to think of all of the characteristics of living organisms as exaptations.
More people need to be familiar with exaptations and neutralism … adaptation is not the only possibility.
The adaptations of today were the byproducts and exaptations (to use a bit of evolutionary jargon) of past ages.
It is further telling than when new morphological features arise in species (such as the inner ear bones in mammals) they are regularly co-opted existing features - exaptations in the language of Gould and Vrba (1982).
I’m familiar with preadaptations Gould calls them exaptations where genes are “inherited” by a species before they are actually adapted to some new purpose, but these genes historically served some other entirely useful purpose.
I’ve read Gould’s rather extensive treatment of spandrels and exaptations.