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Evolution Lab Essay

1353 words - 6 pages

The Evolution of Finches on Darwin and Wallace Islands
Angela Vaughn
BIO/110
December 9, 2013
Heather Browning


The Evolution of Finches on Darwin and Wallace Islands
In the 1800s, Charles Darwin, a brilliant scientist and naturalist, observed that an organism’s traits allowed it to adapt to an environment. These organisms would produce offspring that possessed abilities to survive in their environment. Those that did not possess these traits were less fit and were unable to survive the environment. This was the beginning of the study of evolution and natural selection.
“Evolution is the study of how modern organisms have descended from the earliest life-forms and of the ...view middle of the document...

00), heritability (.70), clutch size (10 eggs), island size (0.5 kilometers), population, precipitation and the time intervals.
To conduct the experiment, I first tested by keeping all the variables in the simulation the same except the precipitation amount. I observed how the finch population was affected on both Darwin Island and Wallace Island with precipitation levels at 0, 10, 20, 30, and 60 centimeters at a 100 year period. Next I observed how the finch population was affected on both Darwin Island and Wallace Island with precipitation levels at 0, 10, 20, 30, and 60 centimeters at a 200 year period.
To see if there was a comparable difference, I changed the beak size of the finches. I observed how the finch population was affected on both Darwin Island and Wallace Island by observing the beak sizes at 10, 12, and 20 millimeters with the precipitation level at a constant of 20 centimeters at a 100 year period. Last I observed and recorded the data for the finches on both Darwin Island and Wallace Island by observing the beak sizes at 10, 12, and 20 millimeters with the precipitation level at a constant of 20 centimeters at a 200 year period.


Data
Precipitation Level – 0 centimeters Precipitation Level – 60 centimeters

Figure 1: Average Beak Size of Finches over 100 Year Period with Zero Precipitation
Figure 2: Average Beak Size of Finches over 100 Year Period and
60 Centimeters of Precipitation

Figure 3: Finch Population Over 100 Year Period and Zero Precipitation
Figure 4: Finch Population Over 100 Year Period and
60 Centimeters of Precipitation

Figure 5: Number and Types of Seeds Over 100 Year Period and Zero Precipitation
Figure 6: Number and Types of Seeds Over 100 Year Period and 60 Centimeters of Precipitation

10 mm Beak Size
100 Year Time Period 10 mm Beak Size
200 Year Time Period


Figure 7: Average Beak Size Over 100 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figure 8: Average Beak Size Over 200 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figure 9: Finch Population over 100 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation
Figure 10: Finch Population over 200 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation


20 mm Beak Size – 100 Years
20 mm Beak Size – 200 Years

Figure 11: Average Beak Size Over 100 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figure 12: Average Beak Size Over 200 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figure 13: Finch Population over 100 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figure 14: Finch Population over 200 Years with 20 centimeters of precipitation

Figures 1 – 6 illustrate how the finches’ beak sizes and populations change over a 100 year period. The number and types of seeds available as a food source on both Darwin Island and Wallace Island are also illustrated. Notice as the precipitation level is decreased to zero centimeters the beak sizes and population of the finches steadily and comparably increase. The beak sizes of...

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