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Chapter 2 - Exam Review Notes

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McMaster University
Ann Herring

Chapter 2 - Exam Notes Evolution: Change in the genetic structure of a population over many generations (over time) Species: Group of related organisms that can interbred and produced fertile, viable offspring Adaptive Radiation: Multiple closely related species branch from one species Fossils Fossils: Physical remains or part of once living organisms that have been mineralized by the replacement of organic with inorganic materials Information from 5 Scientific Disciplines a) Geology Geology: Study of earth (composition, activity, history) - Demonstrates age of planet (4.6 billion yrs old) --> contradicted bible b)Paleopathology Paleopathology: Study of fossils Catastrophe: Powerful catastrophe, following each catastrophe region was vacant of all life, repopulated by different groups of animals moving into it from elsewhere * Earth history does not consist of sequential catastrophes - Dinosaurs NOT leading factor in evolution c) Taxonomy and Systematics Taxonomy: Classification of all life forms - Early --> plants and animals being placed within major groups (not motivated by evolution) - Binomial nomenclature (Carlos Linnaeus) have each plant/animals higher genus * First version of taxonomy, System Natura (book) * Believed life-forms static, fixed at time of creation * More than one level of taxonomy demonstrates different degrees of physical similarity Genus: Group of related species - Taxonomic relationships now called systematics d) Demography Demography: Study of population with regard to birth, survival and death, and major factors that influence these things - Population is limited by food supply - Darwin concluded, species compete for food because they have special attribute(s) e) Evolutionary Biology Evolutionary Biology: Study of organisms and their changes by investigating the fundamental principle by which evolution operates - Plants and animals change over time for purpose of self-improvement Lamarckism: Theory of evolution through the inheritance of acquired characteristics in which an organism can pass on features acquired during its life time *LAMARKS MECHANISM FOR EVOLUTION IS WRONG 1 Chain of Being - Creator gave 'radiance' to first humans - Extinction not possible - Persisted through to 19th century Theory of Evolution By Natural Selection Natural Selection: Some organisms with features that enable them to adapt to the environment preferentially survive and reproduce (increased frequency of feature in population) * Primary driver of evolution 1. Changes in Thought (1707-1778) - Linnaeus (how is the natural world organized?) - Systema Naturae (naming system using genus and species --> 2 names) - Accepted the idea that all creatures exist from a form deriving from original act of divine creation - Did not suggest relationship between species * Provided framework for viewing apes, monkeys, humans as having common ancestor 2. Explanation For Variation (how species could change) - Lamarack (1744-1829) - Advocate for theory of evolution, among first to try to explain process - Theory of Acquired Inheritance * Could develop characteristics that benefit survival throughout lifetime and pass them on to future generations * Traits could be lost through disease - Law of use and disuse * Originally had short necks, kept stretching until they could reach the top leaves * Missing concept of genetics 3. Evidence of Extinctions - Cuvier Catastrophism: Belief that change in life forms occurs through sudden cataclysmic events (only way for extinction to occur) - New species may appear in region as they move into occupy 'available' space' 4. Uniformitarianism (geological thinking) - James Hutton --> processes that drive natural world today are same as those that prevailed in past (Uniformitarianism) - Charles Lyell --> landscape evolved over long periods of time - Questioned biblical interpretations Charles Darwin and Finches - Galapagos islands (South America) * Huge diversity --> dif types (morphologies), dif environments (diversity within birds) - Multiplied and food was scarce --> forced to adapt to environ. or seek new environ.
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