On a distant planet there exists 5 species of a creature called a Woolybooger. ~ Each Woolybooger is similar except their mouth has variations. All woolyboogers eat rice. ~ Some woolyboogers have a small mouth with fat lips. (group 1) ~ Some woolyboogers have a small mouth with muscular lips. (group 2) ~ Some woolyboogers have just a hole for a mouth with no lips. (group 3) ~ One year a new species of woolybooger was discovered, this woolybooger was called the Spoon- Mouthed Woolybooger (group 4). His mouth was wide, with thin muscular lips. This Woolybooger is very rare.
Life as a Woolybooger In order to achieve your needed energy for the day, you must eat 50 individual pieces of rice. 1.Place 50 pieces of rice in front of you. 2.Using your dominant hand pick up your “Mouth”, place your other hand in your lap. 3.Initially you will be given 1 minute to collect all 50 pieces of rice. Remember if you do not get your needed energy you will not survive. 4.Each round time will decrease.
Group Discussion Questions 1. What happens to animals that cannot compete as well with other animals in the wild? 2. Can you think of any real-life examples of the woolybooger, where one species has a definite advantage over another? 3. Sometimes animals that are introduced into an area that they never lived in before, out- compete and endanger resident species, why do you think this happens? 4. If only one species is considered the "fittest", why do we still have so many variations among species. Why do some birds have very long pointy beaks, while other birds have short flat beaks? 5. How do you think diseases can affect natural selection?
I Biologist have long been fascinated by how living organisms are so much alike but also different. Unity is a term used to describe similarities among organisms, while diversity is the term used to describe differences among organisms, yet all organisms have some unique characteristics and adaptations.
II These similarities and differences help define a species. A species is a group of organisms that share similar characteristics and can breed with each other to produce fertile offspring. Fertile offspring are those that reach sexual maturity and can reproduce successfully.
III Most scientists believe that all species living on the earth are changed versions of species that lives before them. These changes occur by chance events that lead to the production of new traits. Most traits are at least partly determined by genes, the basic unit of heredity passed from a parent to its offspring. Just as your genes affect your physical characteristics such as eye color and skin color, genes play a role in the appearance of all plants and animals.
IV In most cases, the appearance of an organism helps it survive in its environment. Occasionally, a mutation (change) occurs in the genetic code, and an organism is born with different characteristics than other members of it species. Most mutations result in serious abnormal development, and the organism with the mutation may not even survive to maturity. In a few cases, a mutation is beneficial to survival and to reproduction. This sort of mutation my result in an adaptation.
V Organisms that are better adapted to their environment survive better and reproduce more than members of their species that are less well-adapted to the environment. Better- adapted individuals are more likely to survive and produce offspring than less well-adapted individuals. They pass the adaptation on to their offspring, and the offspring in turn produce more offspring of their own.
VI After many generations, the adaptation spreads to a large portion of the population. This change occurs because of the different rates of survival and reproduction of the well- adapted and less-adapted ancestors. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v= AMtT5_AQmLg
VII The peppered moth provides a famous example of a beneficial mutation. A mutation occurred by chance and happened to result in a better fit with a changing environment. Individuals with this mutation were able to survive and reproduce better than individuals of the species without the mutation. In future generations, the population had a greater percentage of individuals with the new adaptation.
VIII Prior to 1845, the peppered moth of England was a light-colored moth with some small spots of dark gray. It was almost invisible against the light colored bark of the trees. In 1845, a very dark black moth was discovered. A gene that determines peppered moth coloration had mutated. This mutation led to black color instead of light color. Normally the dark color would make the moth more visible to predators, and dark individual would not have survived.
IX But during this period of time, England was in the middle of the industrial revolution. Factories were producing large amount of coal smoke that covered the trees and buildings, causing everything to take on a dark, dingy color. Because of this changing environment, the mutation that caused dark coloration was beneficial. This mutant dark moth was able to blend into the changing surroundings and escape predation better than the normal, lighter-colored moth. The dark moths survived and reproduced better than the lighter moth.
X By 1985, almost all the peppered moths were a dark black color. The mutation that had occurred in one moth had been passed on to future generations, causing a drastic change in the appearance of the moth population. http://peppermoths.weebly.com/
Homework 1. What is a species? 2. Explain the terms unit and diversity? 3. Explain what happens when a mutation occurs. 4. Give an example of mutation that you thing ugh be beneficial and an example of a mutation that you think might be harmful to a certain species.