High School Biology : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for High School Biology

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following statements is true for genetic drift in a large population?

Possible Answers:

A higher level of reproduction by an individual of the population can contribute significantly to genetic drift

Failure of a single individual to reproduce can significantly alter allele frequency of the population

Large populations routinely undergo abrupt changes in allele frequency and exhibit a large degree of genetic drift

Large populations have a fairly stable allele frequency, and therefore a small degree of genetic drift

Correct answer:

Large populations have a fairly stable allele frequency, and therefore a small degree of genetic drift

Explanation:

Genetic drift can be defined as changes in allele frequencies in a population caused by random events or chance. Large populations are capable of retaining fairly stable allele frequencies, thereby maintaining a small degree of genetic drift.  

In contrast, in a small population, either losing the alleles of a single individual or an over-contribution by a single individual in reproduction can significantly change the frequency of alleles within the population. This could eventually lead to the loss of alleles from the population.

Example Question #1 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following is an example of co-evolution?

Possible Answers:

Plants and the animals that pollinate them

Domestic dogs that have been bred for certain phenotypic traits, resulting in different breeds

Two or more closely related populations that becomes more and more dissimilar due to differing habitats

Analogous structures, such as fins, that develop on species that are not closely related 

Correct answer:

Plants and the animals that pollinate them

Explanation:

Co-evolution is defined as a change of two or more species in close association with one another. Co-evolution is most common with mutualistic relationships, in which both species gain benefit. Such evolution can result in symbiotic relationships, in which the organisms depend on one another for survival. For example, bees make honey from flowers and flowers are pollinated by bees. Neither species can survive without the other.

Parasitism, commensalism, and predator-prey relationships can also demonstrate co-evolution, as one species develops defenses and the other develops offensive traits.

Example Question #35 : Evolutionary Principles

Which of the following describes the endosymbiotic theory?

Possible Answers:

A virus was engulfed by a eukaryote, and the eukaryote flourished after the engulfment.

A virus was engulfed by a prokaryote and the prokaryote flourished after the engulfment.

A small prokaryote was engulfed by a larger prokaryote, and both organisms flourished after the engulfment.

A small prokaryote was engulfed by a larger eukaryote, and both organisms flourished after the engulfment.

A small eukaryote was engulfed by a larger eukaryote, and both organisms flourished after the engulfment.

Correct answer:

A small prokaryote was engulfed by a larger prokaryote, and both organisms flourished after the engulfment.

Explanation:

The endosymbotic theory describes the evolution of eukaryotic cells from prokaryotes. Small independent organisms were engulfed by larger ones; both were prokaryotic and unicellular. This engulfment benefited both organisms, and the genes that promoted this engulfment were selected for. Over a long time, eukaryotic cells evolved with many membrane-bound organelles, each with their own specific structure.

Example Question #3 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following is not an example of evolution?

Possible Answers:

Finches in the Galapagos islands have diversified over time into many species each well-suited for eating a particular type of food.

When the Grand Canyon formed, it geographically divided a squirrel population into two populations, which developed into distinct species.

A frog begins its life as a tadpole, but becomes an amphibian.

Over many generations, wild teosinte has become maize.

Correct answer:

A frog begins its life as a tadpole, but becomes an amphibian.

Explanation:

Evolution must occur over many generations and a long time scale. Changes within the life of an individual do not constitute evolution. Thus, a tadpole becoming a frog is not evolution.

Example Question #4 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Before the Industrial Revolution in England, the peppered moth population in England was predominantly white-colored, with very few individuals exhibiting black coloring. The white moths were camouflaged when they rested on birch trees, while the black moths were not, making them easy targets for predators. Air pollution—specifically, soot—from the Industrial Revolution resulted in the trees being drastically darkened. What most likely happened over time to the moth population?

Possible Answers:

The predators of the moths specifically began to eat more black moths than white moths.

The black moths developed an additional defensive mechanism—spots on their wings resembling eyes.

It experienced no changes due to the pollution.

The black moth phenotype died out entirely, leaving the population composed of entirely white moths.

The black moths came to represent most of the population of peppered moths, and white moths became much less common.

Correct answer:

The black moths came to represent most of the population of peppered moths, and white moths became much less common.

Explanation:

After the Industrial Revolution's smog polluted the trees and resulted in them darkening in color, it was much easier for the black moths to survive and reproduce, because the darkened trees provided them with better camouflage than the light-colored trees had. The white-colored moths, on the other hand, were now exposed to predation at a greater rate, because they were not camouflaged. Due to this change in the environment, the moth population became predominantly black-colored as it adapted. This is an example of natural selection in action.

Example Question #2 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following offers the best description of the mechanism of evolution?

Possible Answers:

There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals best-suited to survive the current conditions will have the highest success in passing on their genes. In a single generation, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species.

There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals least-suited to survive the current conditions will have the highest success in passing on their genes. Over many generations, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species.

There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals best-suited to survive the current conditions will have the highest success in passing on their genes. Over many generations, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species.

There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals best-suited to survive the current conditions will have the lowest success in passing on their genes. Over many generations, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species.

Correct answer:

There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals best-suited to survive the current conditions will have the highest success in passing on their genes. Over many generations, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species.

Explanation:

The mechanism of evolution was described by Darwin as the "survival of the fittest." We need an answer that addresses the fact that the individuals best suited to survival pass on their genes more often than individuals that aren't as well-suited, and that over long periods of time, these changes an accumulate until new species arise. This means that the correct answer is "There are always differences in the genes of individuals of a species. Some differences give certain individuals a better chance of survival. In each generation, those individuals best-suited to survive the current conditions will have the highest success in passing on their genes. Over many generations, the accumulation of these changes leads to the creation of new species from existing species."

Example Question #3 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following is an example of a selective pressure?

Possible Answers:

The presence of wolves in grasslands populated by elk, causing the elk to take refuge in surrounding forests with less energy-dense food until wolves leave

None are instances of selective pressures 

Ocean acidification, causing a depletion of calcium carbonate from shelled organisms and eventually fragile shells 

The presence of diurnally active predators causing the extinction of zooplankton in a laboratory experiment

The presence of the brown anoles in the same habitat as green anoles, causing an increase in the number of toe pads in green anoles

Correct answer:

The presence of the brown anoles in the same habitat as green anoles, causing an increase in the number of toe pads in green anoles

Explanation:

A selective pressure is a factor that promotes evolution by selecting for a trait that will allow better survival for the organism that is at risk for compromised survival. In the case of anoles, the presence of the brown anole has promoted an evolutionary change for the green anole. There is no evolutionary change that can be observed in the other instances. 

Example Question #7 : Understanding Other Evolution Principles

Which of the following do not evolve?

Possible Answers:

Populations

Communities 

Individuals

Envrionment

Species

Correct answer:

Individuals

Explanation:

Evolution occurs over a given time and may be punctuated or stagnant.  As individuals are produced with different characteristics more fit for their environments, the population gradually changes.  Evolution may even cause speciation or the merging  of two species.  Evolution is the response of a changing environment and different species interactions- individuals do not evolve; rather, natural selection works in favor of those individuals who are more fit for the current environment.  Those more fit individuals will go on to produce more offspring with their same qualities, leading to a gradual change, or evolution, of a species, population, and community. 

Example Question #41 : Genetics And Evolution

Hummingbirds have very long tongues and feed on nectar from long, tube-like flowers. The tongue of a hummingbird and the shape of these flowers are an example of what type of evolution?

Possible Answers:

Founder effect

Genetic hitchhiking 

Coevolution

Stabilizing selection

Correct answer:

Coevolution

Explanation:

Coevolution describes how two species that interact closely with each other for their survival can evolve in response to one another. Another example is lichens, which are fungi and bacterial cells that grow together to act as a single living organism. 

Example Question #42 : Evolutionary Principles

A visible difference between males and females of the same species is known as __________.

Possible Answers:

The sperm-egg model

Genetic drift

Evolutionary monomorphism

Sexual dimorphism

Correct answer:

Sexual dimorphism

Explanation:

Sexual dimorphism is a phenotypic differentiation between males and females of the same species. These altered phenotypes occur in organisms that reproduce through sexual reproduction. Commonly referenced possible examples are body size, physical strength and morphology, ornamentation, behavior and other bodily traits. An example would be comparing bright green male peacocks to the brown and grey female peacocks. Genetic drift is a different, unrelated evolutionary concept. Evolutionary monomorphism and the sperm-egg model do not refer to real concepts.

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