What are Vestigial organs?

Asked by Mudita Singh | 22nd Feb, 2012, 06:24: PM

Expert Answer:

Vestigial organ is n organ that was once useful in an animal’s evolutionary past, but now has no apparent nor predictable function. e.g. rudiments of hind limbs in snakes, wings on many flightless birds.

Examples of vestigial organs in humans:

  • Vermiform appendix
  • Plica semilunaris is the small, pink fold of tissue on the inside corner of the eye. It is claimed to be the vestigial remnant of the nictitating membrane
  • Coccyx, or tailbone, is thought to be the remnant of a lost ancestral tail,
  • Wisdom teeth
  • Inability to move the ear muscles like that of most monkeys
  • Formation of goose bumps in humans under stress is considered a vestigial reflex from the view that human evolutionary and more hairy ancestors are believed to have used the goose bumps reflex to raise the body's hair, making the ancestor appear larger so as to help scare off predators. Raising the hair also could be used to trap an extra layer of air, keeping an animal warm.
characters of organisms that have seemingly lost all or most of their original function in a species through evolution

Answered by  | 23rd Feb, 2012, 08:33: AM

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