Why does the composition of fat in animals vary? Is there an evolutionary advantage to producing fat that is less or more saturated?

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    $\begingroup$ I can't reply in-full at the moment, but yes. There are plenty of advantages. Saturated fat is (slightly) more energy-dense, makes cell walls more rigid (bad in a cold environment - like polar waters), and have higher melting points (which also means they can insulate better). $\endgroup$ – MCM Aug 10 '13 at 14:38

Because ducks need to float and cows don't. If there was a densely fat duck it wouldn't float or fly very well and it wouldn't survive to reproduce.

To answer your question, the composition of fat varies because of the different conditions in which the organism needs to thrive. Fur is different as well. Bear in mind nature is a cruel place and any tiny edge you can get is vital for your survival.

My answer is a bit general but I hope it addresses the question.

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