BIO120H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter Lab 1: Reduviidae, Natural Selection, Body Plan

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27 Nov 2018
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BIO120: Adaptation and Biodiversity Lab Manual (Chapter 1 Insect
Diversity and Adaptation)
In association with Lab 1
- In several species of reduviid bugs, immature stages (nymphs) display two interesting features:
o Cover their thorax with a layer of dust, sand or soil particles to form a “dust coat”
o Attach dead insects, mainly ants, to thorax using elastic threads produced by glands on
back to form a “backpack”
- Insect species have evolved remarkable adaptations; traits contributing to fitness by increasing
organism’s chances of surviving and reproducing
- After reading, you should be able to:
o Define “adaptation” and explain how it relates to evolution and the diversity of living
organisms
o Appreciate the immense diversity in insects, and some of the key differences between
representative species such as metamorphosis, and feeding and mating strategies
o Compare and contrast adaptations for viability and adaptations for competition for mates
and how each can help explain organismal diversity
o Derive evolutionary hypotheses based on observations of an organism’s environment and
lifestyle
Introduction
- Living organisms exhibit variety of shapes, sizes, colours, organs, ways of life, and behaviours
all living forms have descended from a common ancestor
- How living forms diverged and diversified to present forms is important question for biological
research
- Insects are arthropods; animals with jointed legs basic insect body includes three main
sections: head, thorax and abdomen; from thorax extend three pairs of legs and usually one or two
pairs of wings
- Insects found in every habitat on earth; exhibit a variety of lifestyles, behaviours and bodily
structures
Adaptation
- A trait, characteristic that contributes to fitness by improving individual’s chances of surviving or
reproducing
- Adaptation can be a physical feature of body, or a behavior
- Biologists use term “adaptation” in two ways:
o An adaptation is a trait
o To adapt
- To adapt and adaptation refer to evolutionary process through which such traits arise
The Origin of Adaptations
- Darwin proposed a mechanism for process of adaptation natural selection
- Populations are made up of different individuals; each generation, new traits and new
combinations of traits are created in population by mutations, as well as recombination results
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