Exam1key - BIOLOGY 325H Exam 1 Spring 2007 NAME _KEY_ Page...

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BIOLOGY 325H NAME ______ KEY __ ____________________ Exam 1 Spring 2007 Page 1 1. [25 pts.] Give and explain two important pre-Darwinian ideas/lines of evidence that helped to move Western thought toward the possibility of biological evolution. There were several possibilities here. 1. The comparative anatomical work of von Baer, which demonstrated that a wide range of organisms had common anatomical structures, e.g., the bones in vertebrate limbs. This evidence supported the idea that the organisms could have all evolved from a common ancestor from which they inherited the same set of features. 2. The biostratigraphic work of William Smith. His work (when he mapped the geological strata in England in preparation for digging canals) showed that particular species of fossils only occurred in particular strata of rock. This indicated that there could have been several rounds of production of new species and extinction. 3. Recognition that fossils represented extinct species. This supported the possibility that some species had been lost so that species are not eternal. It doesn’t directly support the possibility of speciation, but it did challenge the idea that God would have produced eternal species in a perfect world. Biological change (extinction) was possible. 4. Recognition that the earth was much older than ~6000 years. This provided much more time for evolutionary change to have occurred, making it more likely that it might have happened through gradual changes. 5. The work by Cuvier that showed that deeper (older) strata of rock had species that differed more from present day species than shallower (younger) strata of rock. This clearly indicated that there could have been a set of gradual changes in early species that over time produced more recent species finally leading to the species of the present. 6. The work of Buffon, which suggested the possibility that species changed as they migrated from the poles to the tropics as the earth cooled. Although he did not think the species could change from one to another, he did allow for some change as they moved to different places and consumed different sources of food. 7. The ideas of Lamarck, which posited that organisms could evolve by use and disuse of different parts of their bodies. Whichever parts of their bodies that they used would be augmented, and that augmentation would be passed on to their offspring. Parts not used would gradually be lost by a similar means. In addition, he posited that organisms had a natural tendency to greater and greater complexity over time. New species were being created all the time, and the most recent were represented by single- celled organisms. 8. Uniformatarianism - the idea that the same processes we see today also operated in the past and that through gradual, long-term action of these processes we can explain the patterns seen today. Although this idea was originally developed by Lyell for geology, it was recognized by biologists as a means by which one might also understand biological change over time, i.e., that small changes occurring over long
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course BIO 325H taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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Exam1key - BIOLOGY 325H Exam 1 Spring 2007 NAME _KEY_ Page...

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