Presentation on theme: "Darwin and Evolution. 17.1 History of Evolutionary Thought 1. In 1831, Charles Darwin, a 22-year-old naturalist, accepted a position aboard the ship HMS."— Presentation transcript:
17.1 History of Evolutionary Thought 1. In 1831, Charles Darwin, a 22-year-old naturalist, accepted a position aboard the ship HMS Beagle that began a voyage around the world; it provided Darwin with many observations. In a lofty valley of the Cordillera, near Mendoza, I found another spider with a singularly-formed web. Strong lines radiated in a vertical plane from a common centre, where the insect had its station; but only two of the rays were connected by a symmetrical mesh-work; so that the net, instead of being, as is generally the case, circular, consisted of a wedge-shaped segment. All the webs were similarly constructed. Excerpt from "The Voyage of the Beagle" by Charles Darwin "The Voyage of the Beagle" by Charles Darwin
Pre-Darwinian world-view was determined by theological beliefs. 1) The earth is young. 2) Each species was specially created and did not change 3) Variations are imperfections 4) Observations are to substantiate the prevailing worldview.
2. Mid-Eighteenth-Century Contributions Carolus Linnaeus and Taxonomy Taxonomy is the science of classifying organisms;. Linnaeus developed a binomial system of nomenclature - two-part names for each species Homo sapiens Canis lupus Brassica rapa
B. Georges Louis Leclerc Count Buffon (1707-1788), was a French naturalist. In the course of his examination of the animal world, Buffon noted that despite similar environments, different regions have distinct plants and animals, a concept later known as Buffon's Law, widely considered the first principle of biogeography.
C. Erasmus Darwin a. Erasmus Darwin (1731-1802) was Charles Darwin's grandfather. b. He was a physician and a naturalist whose writings on both botany and zoology contained many comments that suggested the possibility of common descent.
3. Late Eighteenth-/Early-Nineteenth Century Contributions A. Cuvier and Catastrophism a. George Cuvier (1769-1832), a French vertebrate zoologist, was the first to use comparative anatomy to develop a system of classifying animals. b. He founded the science of paleontology-the study of fossils-and suggested that a single fossil bone was all he needed to deduce the entire anatomy of an animal.
c. To explain the fossil record, Cuvier proposed that a whole series of catastrophes (extinctions) and re-populations from other regions had occurred. d. Catastrophism is the term applied to Cuvier's explanation of fossil history: the belief that catastrophic extinctions occurred, after which repopulation of surviving species occurred, giving an appearance of change through time.
B. Lamarck's Acquired Characteristics a. Lamarck (1744-1829) was the first to state that descent with modification occurs and that organisms become adapted to their environments. b. Lamarck, an invertebrate zoologist, held ideas at odds with Cuvier's. c. Lamarck mistakenly saw "a desire for perfection" as inherent in all living things.
d. Inheritance of acquired characteristics was Lamarck's belief that organisms become adapted to their environment during their lifetime and pass these adaptations to their offspring. e. Experiments fail to uphold Lamarck's inheritance of acquired characteristics How could you test Lamarck's theory?
What We Know So Far 1. Taxonomy and classification emphasize similarities among species (common descent) 2. Fossils show extinct species (paleontology) 3. Isolated species are distinct (biogeography) 4. Organisms have adaptations to help them survive *At this point, no mechanism has been proposed to explain how these adaptations come to be * Special creation is still strongly held, but offers no explanation for the appearance of new species (like on an island).........Enter Charles Darwin..........
Questions to Ponder: Did the animals on the islands descend from one mainland ancestor? What were the variations found on the finches? Why were the island finches so different from mainland finches? Why did the vampire finch evolve?
6. Natural Selection and Adaptation a. Natural selection was proposed by both Alfred Russel Wallace and Darwin Wallace was not given credit for the theory because Darwin published first, however, there is a geographical area named for him called the "Wallace Line" which separates Australia and Asia.
Figure 17B Regions between Australia and the Orient have distinct biogeography – separated by what we now call the Wallace Line
There are three preconditions for natural selection. 1. The members of a population have random but heritable variations. 2. In a population, many more individuals are produced each generation than the environment can support. 3. Individuals have adaptive characteristics that enable some to survive and reproduce better.
Consider This..... What characteristics might make these rats more likely to survive?
There are two consequences of natural selection. 1. An increasing proportion of individuals in succeeding generations will have the adaptive characteristics. 2. The result of natural selection is a population adapted to its local environment.
Natural selection can only utilize variations that are randomly provided; therefore there is no directedness or anticipation of future needs.
Pause and think: Thinking that evolution has a direction is a common misconception. Can you think of any statements you may have heard that suggest people think that evolution is directional?
Extinction occurs when previous adaptations are no longer suitable to a changed environment.
How Evolution by Natural Selection Works 1. Variations exist in a population.
3. Individuals differ in FITNESS a) fitness measures an organism’s reproductive success b) it does not necessarily mean stronger. Fully armored stickleback (ocean) Low armor (freshwater)
4. Survivors pass traits to offspring Over time, the traits that provide the best chance of survival and reproduction are the ones most prevalent in the population - these are ADAPTATIONS
Be careful with that word….. Adaptation is a trait, a noun. It is dangerous to use it in verb form because it suggests that an individual can choose to adapt. They cannot. ***** POPULATIONS EVOLVE ***** Individuals are pretty much stuck with the traits they have inherited. Fix this sentence: This Aye Aye has adapted to a life of eating insects. It’s long digit is used to probe wood.
ARTIFICIAL SELECTION Dogs breeds were developed by years of breeding wolves We chose the traits most desirable, then bred the dogs with those traits. Nature does the same with “natural selection”
ARTIFICIAL SELECTION IN PLANTS All of these species came from one species
On the Origin of Species by Darwin 1. After the HMS Beagle returned to England in 1836, Darwin waited over 20 years to publish. 2. He used the time to test his hypothesis that life forms arose by descent from a common ancestor and that natural selection is a mechanism by which species can change and new species arise. 3. Darwin was forced to publish Origin of Species after reading a similar hypothesis by Alfred Russel Wallace.
The Definition of Evolution Evolution is the change in allele frequencies, or a change in the gene pool, of a population. Things that are evolution. Things that are NOT evolution.
Imagine a Scenario of Evolution..... 1. Create a real or imagined organism 2. Describe 2-3 variations 3. Show how evolution would act on this population given a change in the environment (climate, predators, food change..) 4. Pay attention to which variations are beneficial, which are harmful. 5. Show how reproduction changes the overall population (with regard to these variations) 6. Be creative! You can map your organism through a few generations... You will present your scenario to the class!