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    Evolution of an animal

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    Choose ONE animal species. Your goal is to describe the way in which an evolutionary change might occur for a particular characteristic (trait) of a population of that species as a result of natural selection.

    The characteristic (trait) could be something like coloration pattern, length of the limbs, size of the teeth or beak, or any measurable trait that is inherited.

    The organism you choose should be a real one but the evolutionary change in a trait that you describe can be real or fiction.

    In your own words,

    Explain how the change in this trait occurs. You will describe the trait in the population at the starting point and then what the trait will look like at a later time, as a result of natural selection.
    Make sure to explain the process by which the changes occurred. What is the selective pressure? Explain why the change might confer more fitness to a particular environment.

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    Solution Preview

    Darwin's finches are an example of an animal that has changed due to a selective pressure. The finches that arrived on the Galapagos Islands were the same species, but over time they began to change. The changes were due to the food supply, which would be the selective pressure. The birds evolved different shapes and sizes of beaks according to the food availability and variety. The competition for food that was occurring among the finches may have caused their extinction, if they had not changed. As a result, there are about ...

    Solution Summary

    This solution provides examples of selective pressures and how an animal might change in response to that pressure. Steps on how to approach the question are included. Links are included that discuss mechanisms of change and evolution in general. These may help you to choose how evolution affected your animal.