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exadaptationexadaptation (fr.); Exadaptation (ger.)

  • A trait that has lost its original function for which it formerly was selected and that has acquired a new function for which it is currently selected.
    If we want to distinguish later selective processes from those which fortuitously happen to have latched onto a mutation first, we might call it secondary adaptation, or, to continue the proliferation of latinate terms ›exadaptation‹. [...] By introducing the notion of exadaptation we can allow that feathers have functions such as flight and thermo-regulation, even if they were originally selected for catching insects
    Griffiths, P. (1992). Adaptive explanation and the concept of a vestige. In: Griffiths, P. (ed.). Trees of Life, 111-131: 118; 121.