96 Forkbird Activity

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1. Which type of forkbird was the most successful? Explain how the
class data support this conclusion.
The 4 tined forkbird was the most successful. Once it appeared in the
population, it never disappeared. The 4-Tined forkbird increased its
population than the one-Tined forkbird. In addition, the 2-Tined
forkbird started off with the most, 21, but then that number
decreased. The 4- tined forkbirds number’s continued to increase.
This happened because it was the best at gathering food since it
could scoop more food than the other types of forkbirds. This is
supported by the class data which shows that we collected the
Cheerios with the forks, more were collected with the 4-tined forks. A
direct example from the class data is generation ten, when there was
one 1-tined forkbird, four 2-tined forkbird, and twenty 4-tined
forkbird.
3. How did the forkbird activity simulate the process of natural
selection? Explain.
The forkbird activity simulated the process of natural selection by
showing how the three-different types of forkbirds evolved and the
benefits of that evolution. Initially, the population had only one type of
forkbird, the one tined forkbird but because of genetic mutations, other
types of forkbirds emerged over time. There were three types of
forkbirds, the one tined fork bird, the two tined forkbird, and the four
tined forkbird. The forkbirds that were better at gathering food tended
to survive longer and reproduce. In most cases, the surviving forkbirds
passed their traits on to their offspring, which then had the same number
of tines as the parent. The four-tined forkbirds were most successful at
gathering food and became the most common in the population.
Therefore, the activity simulated how forkbirds evolved and which trait
helped the birds survive and which lead to their death.
5. Did this activity model Darwin’s or Lamark’s theory of evolution?
This activity modeled Darwin’s theory of evolution because the
forkbirds did not change- they were the same as the parent unless there
was a mutation. The change in the population was first due to mutations
and then to natural selection. The birds that ate most efficiently survived
and were able to reproduce. This increased the type of bird that was
most efficient.
7. Reflection: The cheetah, an extremely fast and efficient hunter, is
an endangered species. The few cheetahs alive today show very
little variation. How does this help to explain why cheetahs are on
the verge of becoming extinct?
The cheetahs are at the verge of getting extinct because their traits did
not help them hunt or could not help them survive predators such as
hunting and were not able to reproduce. Also, they could not adapt to
their new environment which as well is a cause for their extinction.
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