Presentation on theme: " 1) Species Classification: As the age of exploration during the 15 th and 16 th centuries progressed, new species of plants and animals were discovered."— Presentation transcript:
1) Species Classification: As the age of exploration during the 15 th and 16 th centuries progressed, new species of plants and animals were discovered. New types of people were being discovered like the Beothuk in Newfoundland, and the Aztecs. This new information needed to be organized if a thorough study could be done. One of the earliest naturalists to start classifying humans was Carolus Linnaeus.
Linnaeus’ system of classification. Linnaeus believed a classification system was required to organize the results of Divine creation. His first idea was to classify plants and animals according to their anatomical structures. If they looked similar they could be classified together. He also believed that humans and plants were fixed and could not change, meaning God’s work was perfect as created and could not change its composition or evolve. Later he revised his ideas as he saw the results of crossbreeding plants.
In the late 18 th and early 19 th centuries the discovery of various fossils indicated that humanity had not only existed but appeared to have evolved.
His greatest discoveries were in the Galapagos islands. Darwin examined the samples collected on his voyage and noted that within each group of plant or animal, there were variations in size and colour. He believed that over a period of time, changes occurred in climate and other environmental conditions that resulted in species that could adapt to these changes. Those species that did not adapt were doomed.
One group of finches were larger in size and had powerful beaks. They were able to open hard seeds. Smaller finches could not compete with them and some developed short, thick beaks that allowed them to eat leaves and blossoms. A third species of finches had long, straight beaks that allowed them to eat nectar from the local cacti.
In his book “ On the Origin of Species” published in 1858 he stated that species were forced to evolve or face extinction when circumstances required it. The species that were able to evolve and adapt survived. This would allow for the balance between food supply and species growth to be maintained. It was when an imbalance occurred that new stages of adaptation would begin.