Coming out of the fields of both logic and philosophy, temporal (time related) precedence is the primary determinant used in answering a "cause and effect" question - a question that requires a knowledge of what happened first in an event.
For example, "What happened first, the chicken or the egg?" Simplistically, in current time, the chicken has the temporal precedence in this question. But then you say "but the chicken came from an egg, so maybe the egg came first." Therefore, when applying this question to the idea of evolution of species, the discussion becomes murkier and much more difficult to answer.