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National Geographic Pictures of the Year
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Photo: A Jacobin pigeon

Like a Park Avenue matron with her fur collar blown around her, a Jacobin pigeon meets the world. The Jacobin’s unpigeonly look results from selective breeding to develop birds for show. Such domestic breeding inspired Charles Darwin to theorize that nature could also work dramatic changes over time.

Photograph by Robert Clark
“Was Darwin Wrong?” November 2004

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Photo: An elephant splashes in a pool in the Okavango River Photo: A baby harp seal Photo: A saltwater crocodile Photo: Solar corona Photo: A patas monkey clings to a baby Photo: A Jacobin pigeon Photo: A young arctic fox Photo: A Brazilian flea frog Photo: A tigerfish bares its fangs Photo: Two male polar bears play-fight