Evolution Review Questions and answers
1) Outline the contributions of Cuvier, Hutton, Lyell, Buffn, Linnaeus, Wallace, Lamarck, and
Cuvier: investigated fossils and found layers of different species
-Observed that one species is unique to one layer
-Suggests that catastrophe occurred and others migrated in
-Creator of the Theory of Catastrophism
Hutton: said earth is very old
-Small changes over time add up to big differences like mountains.
Buffon: said species change over time
-Introduced ideas about common ancestry through similarities
Linnaeus: said that species can be classified through names
-Father of Taxonomy
Lamarck: said that a mother could “influence” the traits to the child
-Giraffe example stretching it’s neck
-Theory of Inheritance of Acquired Traits
Malthus: said too many are born, but little survive due to limited resources
-Supported the idea of natural selection
Wallace: sent his ideas about natural selection to Darwin
-Made Darwin publish his papers before he does. 2) Outline Lamark’s theory of evolution of “inheritance of acquired charactoristics”, and
compare it to Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection
Inheritance of acquired characteristics states that the actions from the traits that the parents
follow are influenced to the child. A parent giraffe needed to stretch his neck higher to get
the food, and passes that to his child. While natural selection states that the traits that are
favoured are kept, while others aren’t. The giraffe with the longer neck will be kept because
they can get food and survive, while the ones with shorter necks will die off. The longer
neck one will reproduce, carrying it’s traits to the next generation.
3) Outline the observations of Darwin from his HMS Beagle voyage, which led to his theory.
During his voyage to South America, he noticed 2 types of Finches from two different areas.
From one, their beaks were short, while just up the hill; the Finches there featured larger,
longer beaks. This was because the birds higher up on the hill had to adapt to the
vegetation, which were flowers with nutritious parts deep within the pedals of the flower.
The birds had to adapt their beaks so they can stick into the flowers and retrieve the foods.
Those without the traits for a long beak would die and their traits won’t be carried on.
4) State the two ideas that Darwin presented in his book “On the Origin of Species”.
The idea of Natural Selection and the idea of common ancestry.
5) State the 5 major points of Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection and explain
-There are more creatures born than can survive
-300 Ostrich eggs, most of them eaten by rats before they mature
-There are variations in traits
-Some Ostriches that can run fast, but some slower
-Some traits are more advantageous
-Faster Ostriches can run away from predators quicker and therefore be eaten less and
advantageous over slower trait -Advantageous traits -> better chance of survival and reproduce
-Those who run away from predators can continue to live, grow, and live somewhere safe
for them to reproduce.
-Disadvantageous traits are destroyed
-The Ostriches that run slower are eaten by predators
6) Define evolution
The change of organisms due to a difference in genetic variation to adapt to the changing
earth around them.
7) Explain how evolution is a feature of populations and not individuals
Evolution cannot change a person’s genes after it’s been inside a person’s body. Even if
you were a giraffe, and you had a short neck, you neck can’t get longer over your own
lifetime. If you carry the favoured gene, then it will be passed onto your children, changing
the generations after. You yourself cannot change to adapt in your lifetime.
8) Define natural selection.
Natural Selection is where the variation that’s favoured will be preserved, while those with
unfavoured traits will be destroyed.
9) Indicate the importance of variation to natural selection
Variation is important to natural selection because it’s variation that triggers evolution. It’s
up to the variations that offer some differences between creatures that allow them to have
the ability to survive the environment. If there were no variation, then they will either all be
favoured, or not favoured, leading to no population or a great population that won’t
withstand anything that happens in nature.
10) Define adaptation
Any anatomical structure chemical make up or behavior that enables an organism to live in
11) Explain evolutionary myths 1. Individuals evolve
A. i. As proven in question 8, it’s not possible
2. Natural selection has a purpose, to increase complexity of things
A. i. Has no purpose, direction, or goal. Not even the survival of species. No indication
3. Evolutions by natural selection produces higher and advanced more humans
A. i. Evolution does not make higher level humans
4. Evolution proves that there is no god
A. i. Evolution does not seek to negate the existence of god
5. Humans are descendants of apes
A. i. Humans aren’t from apes; we share the same common ancestor with apes. Humans
also share common ancestry with every other living thing as well.
12) Describe the importance and results of the industrial melanism and the peppered moth lab.
Before the industrial revolution, birch trees were white. Peppered moths adapted to that by
turning itself white to camouflage with them and not be eaten. During the industrial
revolution, the soot from factories painted the birch trees black. The moths adapted to that
and turn itself black to avoid being seen. After the people realized the mess with the soot
they’ve caused, they began to clean things up, restoring the birch back to their white colour.
13) Explain the different forms of evidence for evolution including fossil records, vestigial
structures, homologous structures, and analogous structures, embryology, vestigial sequences,
and molecular evidence.
Fossil Records: shows the structure of the animal preserved from ancient rocks. They can
be compared with other generations of the same species to see structural differences.
Vestigial Structures: are structures that are in current generation animals that aren’t
currently put to use. This suggests that these organs come from older generations of that
animal but have evolved to not require them anymore.
Homologous structures: are structures that look the same or offer very similar functions
across a broad range of species. These suggest that they come from a common ancestor in
their evolutionary past.
Analogous Structures: are structures that are similar but these animals aren’t from a
common ancestor and suggest a convergent evolution. They’ve grown to have similar traits
by adapting to their own respective environment but happen to result in similar structures.
Embryology: almost all species have very similar embryos, which suggest a common
ancestry that gave them the same embryos. Vestigial Sequences: sequences of a gene that use to be in use but no longer serve its
purpose. It’s been disabled. Suggests common ancestry where this gene used to be
required but not anymore because natural selection has proven that gene not worthy of
Molecular Evidence: Amino acids in body are almost 100% identical. Any differences in
Amino acids or DNA sequences are going to tell how closely related these species are.
14) Compare divergent and convergent evolution
Divergent evolution is where one species branches off this line and continues.
Convergent evolution is where two species that branched off a long time ago that happened
to meet at a similar proximity. They’ve branched off a common ancestor from before, but
have evolved to be two completely different species that aren’t related but have very similar
15) Describe the uses of a cladogram and be able to create one using amino acid sequences
Cladograms are diagrams that the relationships between different species based on the
number of common tra