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Evolutionary Biology

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Natural SelectionThe process by which the fittest individuals survive and are chosen by the opposite sex (females) to mate because of their favourable characteristics which are passed onto the next generation.

Evolution"Survival of the fittest"

CharlesDarwin Darwin published his theory of evolution with compelling evidence in his 1859 book On the Origin of Species, overcoming scientific rejection of earlier concepts of transmutation of species.[3][4] By the 1870s the scientific community and much of the general public had accepted evolution as a fact. However, many favoured competing explanations and it was not until the emergence of the modern evolutionary synthesis from the 1930s to the 1950s that a broad consensus developed in which natural selection was the basic mechanism of evolution.[5][6] In modified form, Darwin's scientific discovery is the unifying theory of the life sciences, explaining the diversity of life.[7][8] Darwin's early interest in nature led him to neglect his medical education at the University of Edinburgh; instead, he helped to investigate marine invertebrates. Studies at the University of Cambridge encouraged his passion for natural science.[9] His five-year voyage on HMS Beagle established him as an eminent geologist whose observations and theories supported Charles Lyell's uniformitarian ideas, and publication of his journal of the voyage made him famous as a popular author.[10] Puzzled by the geographical distribution of wildlife and fossils he collected on the voyage, Darwin began detailed investigations and in 1838 conceived his theory of natural selection.[11] Although he discussed his ideas with several naturalists, he needed time for extensive research and his geological work had priority.[12] He was writing up his theory in 1858 when Alfred Russel Wallace sent him an essay which described the same idea, prompting immediate joint publication of both of their theories.[13] Darwin's work established evolutionary descent with modification as the dominant scientific explanation of diversification in nature.[5] In 1871 he examined human evolution and sexual selection in The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, followed by The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals. His research on plants was published in a series of books, and in his final book, he examined earthworms and their effect on soil.[14] In recognition of Darwin's pre-eminence as a scientist, he was honoured with a state funeral and buried in Westminster Abbey, close to John Herschel and Isaac Newton.[15] Darwin has been described as one of the most influential figures in human history

Island Theory of BiogeographyThe theory of island biogeography proposes that: 1)The number of species found on an undisturbed island is determined by immigration and extinction 2) That the isolated populations may follow different evolutionary routes, as shown by Darwin's observation of finches in the Galapagos Islands3) Immigration and emigration are affected by the distance of an island from a source of colonists (distance effect). Usually this source is the mainland, but it can also be other islands. Islands that are more isolated are less likely to receive immigrants than islands that are less isolated. 4) The rate of extinction once a species manages to colonize an island is affected by island size (area effect or the species-area curve). Larger islands contain larger habitat areas and opportunities for more different varieties of habitat. Larger habitat size reduces the probability of extinction due to chance events. Habitat heterogeneity increases the number of species that will be successful after immigration.

Darwin's Finches

<--Lamarck vs. Darwin


Theory of Aquired Characteristics 1) Organisms change due to their environment2) they pass on their changes to their offspringEx. Giraffes grew their necks to reach the food higher up and then passed this long neck onto their offspring

Evolution, Yay or Nay?

HMS Beagle

Bill Nye



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