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Chapter 13 Evolution and Natural Selection. Evolution Evolution is a change in the frequency of genetically determined characteristics within a population.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 13 Evolution and Natural Selection. Evolution Evolution is a change in the frequency of genetically determined characteristics within a population."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 13 Evolution and Natural Selection

2 Evolution Evolution is a change in the frequency of genetically determined characteristics within a population over time Microevolution occurs when there are minor differences in allele frequency between populations of the same species

3 Evolution Macroevolution occurs when there are major differences that have occurred over long periods that have resulted in so much genetic change that new kinds of species are produced

4 Development of Evolutionary Thought For centuries, people believed that the various species of plants and animals were unchanged from the time of their creation – Today we know this is not true, but they knew nothing of DNA, meiosis, and genetics

5 Development of Evolutionary Thought In the mid-1700’s,Georges-Louis Buffon, a French naturalist wondered if animals underwent change (evolved) over time. Buffon had a student, Jean-Baptiste de Lamark who suggested how these changes might occurred. His ideas were known as acquired characteristics.

6 Development of Evolutionary Thought Lamark’s theory of acquired characteristics states that traits gained during an organism’s life and transmitted to the offspring. For example, giraffes had short necks, but in order to reach the leaves, their necks stretching. When these giraffes reproduced their offspring acquired their parent’s longer necks.

7 Theory of Natural Selection Charles Darwin ( ) was the son of a physician and member of a family with a history scientific curiosity. After briefly studying medicine, he enrolled at Cambridge University, receiving his B.A. degree in After graduating, Darwin left on a multi-year expedition ( ) on the HMS Beagle, primarily as a social companion to the captain.

8 Natural Selection The purpose of the trip was to chart poorly known coastal waters off South America. While the crew were surveying, Darwin went on many expeditions to collect plants and animals on mainland South America and the islands which the ship visited. Darwin noted that the temperate species in South America looked much more like tropical South American species than they did temperate species from Europe.

9 Natural Selection and Charles Darwin When the Beagle arrived at the Galapagos Islands, 900km west of South America, he observed many new species, yet similar to those on the mainland. This included 13 species of finches, with dramatically different beak morphologies. Some were very “unfinchlike” with bills like insect-eating warblers. Some Galapagos finch species were found only on one island, others had more than one.

10 Natural Selection After his return to England, Darwin developed his ideas on evolution and natural selection by 1844, but delayed publishing. He spent 20 more years collecting more observations to support his theory. In 1858, Alfred Wallace, a naturalist working in Indonesia, sent Darwin a manuscript with essentially the same theory as Darwin This prompted Darwin to finish his book, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection in 1859.

11 Origin of Species The first point of the Origin of Species is that all organisms are related through descent from some unknown ancestor that lived in the past. Over time, species changed via adaptations which fit them to specific ways of life. These ideas, he called descent with modification.

12 Origin of Species The second point in the Origin of Species is that the dominant mechanism for evolution of species is natural selection. Darwin argued that evolution of species in the natural world was analogous to artificial selection of domesticated animals and plants. Individuals with desired characteristics are breed with other individuals with desired characteristics. This can produce tremendous changes in the phenotype of a species in a relatively short period of time.

13 Origin of Species The theory of natural selection is based on the following assumptions about the nature of living things: 1. All organisms produce more offspring than survive. 2. No two organisms are exactly alike. 3. Among organisms, there is a constant struggle for survival. 4. Individuals that possess favorable characteristics for their environment have a higher rate of survival and produce more offspring. 5. Favorable characteristics become more common in the species, and unfavorable characteristics are lost.

14 Natural Selection - Giraffes Using Darwin-Wallace theory with giraffes 1. In each generation more giraffes would be born than the food supply could support. 2.In each generation, some giraffes would inherit longer necks, and some would inherit shorter necks. 3.All giraffes would compete for the same food source. 4.Giraffes with longer necks would obtain more food, have a higher survival rate, and produce some offspring. 5.As a result, succeeding generations would show an increase in the number of individuals with longer necks.

15 Natural Selection and Evolution The gene pool of a species is modified by: – chance events in small populations (founder effect, genetic drift, genetic bottlenecks) – immigration and emigration – Mutations – Natural selection As a result, the gene pool in the next generation differs from that of the previous generation - microevolution.

16 Natural Selection – Darwin’s Finches Darwin hypothesized that differences in bill-size lead to differences in the success of Galapagos finches when feeding. Detailed research over the last 30+ years have shown that bill size varies among finches and is inheritable (genetically controlled). During drought years in the Galapagos, the local plants produce fewer seeds than during normal, wet years. All the finches prefer to eat the smaller, easier to handle seeds first but soon they are all gone. All that remain are the larger seeds, which are harder to open. Larger billed birds can open these larger seeds, but smaller billed birds cannot.

17 Natural Selection – Darwin’s Finches Larger billed birds survive drought better and leave more offspring - more fit. The alleles that favor large bills become more common among the next generation. The average size of birds and their bills increases in the population. Larger billed birds are less fit during wet years when small seeds are abundant. Larger billed birds are less efficient when feeding on small seeds.

18 Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium The Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium allows us to predict the frequencies of alleles in the offspring if we know the frequency of alleles in the parental population. If a population demonstrates genotype frequencies from generation to generation that are consistent with Hardy-Weinberg, then it is NOT evolving.

19 Hardy-Weinberg Equation The Hardy-Weinberg Equation is p 2 + 2pq +q 2 = 1 p 2 stands for the frequency of homozygous dominant alleles 2pq stands for the frequency of heterozygous alleles q 2 stands for the frequency of homozygous recessive alleles

20 Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium Conditions necessary for gene frequencies to remain constant are the following: 1. Mating must be completely random 2. Mutations must not occur 3. The migration of individual organisms into and out of the population must not occur. 4. The population must be very large 5. All genes must have an equal chance of being passed onto the next generation

21 Effects of Natural Selection In natural selection, particular phenotypes match (or don’t) the local environmental conditions. Some phenotypes do well, live long, and produce abundant offspring (and other don’t). If these phenotypic characters have a genetic basis, individuals that have favored alleles will contribute more alleles to the next generation.

22 Effects of Natural Selection In stabilizing selection, the environment favors individuals at the middle of the range of phenotypes, reducing phenotypic variation. With the range of color possibilities, the ones that do not blend into the environment, will be more likely to be killed by predators.

23 Effects of Natural Selection In directional selection, the environment favors individuals at the one end of the range of phenotypes, shifting phenotypic variation. For example, periods of drought favor larger individuals among Darwin’s finches in the Galapagos. Bigger birds compete better for scarce food, survive better, and leave more offspring. During wetter periods, the opposite is true.

24 Effects of Natural Selection In diversifying selection, the environment selects against average individuals and favors the extremes, increasing phenotypic variation. Melanistic moths are either light colored or dark colored to match light or dark tree bark. Intermediate colors match neither background and increase predation by birds.


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