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Similarly, if you could take your wayback machine back to the time when the first mammals came into existence, they wouldn't look like major new body plans. They would look very much like early reptiles, having only diverged recently.

It's only after a significant period of time has elapsed that you can use the benefit of hindsight to point to that divergence and say "See? That was the beginning of a major new body plan."

have to start by defining "major body plan"

from what i've read, biologists define MBPs same as the Phyla.... and ,iirc, no new Phyla since Cambrian (about 540mya).

..... a hairless Ape isn't *majorly* different from a tailless Monkey from a Rodent from a quadruped from a Fish ......etc
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