‘The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology. We fancy ourselves as the only true students of life’s history, yet to preserve our favoured account of evolution by natural selection we view our data as so bad that we never see the very process we profess to study.’

Stephen Jay Gould (Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University). Natural History, vol. 86 (5), May 1977, p.14.