Questions tagged [adaptation]

Adaptation refers to both the current state of being adapted and to the dynamic evolutionary process that leads to the adaptation.

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Chiasmata and Adaptation

We know that during the crossing over of meiosis II, some portions of the paternal chromosome recombine with the maternal chromosome along the chiasmata. And the number of chiasmata varies. My ...
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Mariana Trench fish “how they can thrive under that extreme water pressure is still a mystery”

New Mariana Trench species is the deepest-dwelling fish in the ocean Exactly how they can thrive under that extreme water pressure is still a mystery for now, but these creatures have been sighted ...
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Are there animals that have evolved a resistance to human activity or encroachment?

There are countless sources, both peer-reviewed and popular, explaining how overuse and misuse of antibiotics is breeding a new generation of antibiotic-resistant "superbugs" such as MRSA (Methicillin-...
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Definition of “genomic adaptation”

I have encountered the term genomic adaptation in some literature (for example Sikkink et al. 2017). I am struggling to parse the term, and I have not been able to ...
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Why aren't there any transitional animals today?

You have probably heard this question before and in different formats. Usually, it is used as a "proof" to disprove the theory of evolution. I understand that the apes we descended from are ...
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Can the apparent drop in insect population be explained by local insects evolving to avoid traps?

In this widely reported Plos One article, it is stated that, after roughly 3 decades of placing Malaise traps in a set of predetermined locations (counting and replacing them regularly), a sharp ...
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Who were the first authors to talk about local adaptation?

I was curious to read about what Darwin had to say about the existance of locally adapted subpopulations. I discovered to my surprise that the expressions and terms "local adaptation", "spatial ...
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Do Traits Have to be Adaptive in Order to Survive?

I'm reading Michael Pollan's book 'How to Change Your Mind', which is largely about psychedelic mushrooms. In discussing the biology of the mushrooms, he writes: 'Even if psilocybin in mushrooms ...
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More general term than “adaptation”

The Wikipedia article about adaptation states: Adaptation differs from flexibility, acclimatization, and learning. What is a more general term than adaptation? For example, is there an umbrella ...
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Why does my room suddenly look 'reddish'? My eyes seem to adapt to color

To get the context of this question clear, I would like you to walk through some parts of my house. We'll start with one of my rooms as it appears normally - As evident, this part of my house has a ...
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What's the difference between reaction norms and phenotypic plasticity?

I'm trying to understand better these two concepts, but I cannot see a clear difference yet. Reaction norm: "set of phenotypes that can be produced by an individual genotype when exposed to different ...
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Why do humans grow taller than their ancestors?

I'm taking the Introduction to Genetics And Evolution course and in the first lecture it was said that: Evolution in a biological sense is simply a change through time. And very importantly, that ...
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Why do some bad traits evolve, and good ones don't?

If a trait would be advantageous to an organism then why hasn't it evolved yet? Conversely, if a trait is not advantageous or mildly disadvantageous, why does it exist? In other words why does ...
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What kind of owl does this moth look like?

I found this moth and I noticed that it looked like an owl to me and remembered something about how some moths camouflages look like predictors? What kind of moth this is and what owl does this moth ...
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Is evolution theory falsifiable by whether mutations result in a loss or gain of genetic information? [closed]

If I understand the theory correctly, evolution revolves around the process of adaptation of a being to its environment which results in the increment of survival and reproduction chances for that ...
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(secondary) human/primate advantages over other animals? [closed]

I am trying to understand the advantages that humans have over other species, besides what you could call 'sentience-critical'. What I mean by this is, the first set of answers you'll get is "more ...
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How do longleaf pine trees adapt to the florida keys rainforest? [closed]

I know that longleaf pine trees can be found in rainforests, but I can't find anything.
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insect paralysis in response to predator echolocation frequency

I remember a case in which some insect had evolved an adaptation in response to a predator's (bat's?) echolocation frequency. In mid-flight, it's wing muscles would become paralyzed and it would ...
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Are we evolving as fast as the oxygen is depleting?

How much oxygen saturation have we lost in the last 100 years? As oxygen levels dwindle and industry, deforestation, and population increases, at what year and saturation will the low levels of ...
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What is the adaptive significance of temperature dependent sex determination?

Why do some reptiles have TDSD ? Is it because one of the genders is healthier than the other that only they, can survive high temperatures?
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What to call a trait that has current utility but unclear evolutionary origin?

I'm looking for a commonly used term to describe a trait that has clear current utility but an evolutionary origin that is uncertain and that we do not necessarily wish to emphasize in our description ...
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What natural defence mechanism does the human body have against lead poisoning?

It is known that lead ion takes place of necessary ions, like calcium, in the body, but does not perform their task, hence wrecking the system. So how does the body eventually recognise this threat ...
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Do similar adaptations result in similiar genetic code?

Sometimes organisms within the same species evolve similar adaptations to similar living conditions without interbreeding. Let's say we have two human populations which need to adapt to a colder ...
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How can just random mutations explain mimicry? [closed]

I have been reading this article on drug resistance which explained that how random mutations in a bacterial colony can lead to development of drug resistance among some organisms in that colony. A ...
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What of Gould's contributions to evolutionary biology are still accepted in the mainstream?

I have been reading Daniel Dennett's Darwin's Dangerous Idea, in which he picks apart many of Stephen Jay Gould's criticisms of neo-Darwinism, particularly in the chapter 'Bully for Brontosaurus'. ...
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What is this passage trying to say about Darwin's difficulty in explaining variation?

This passage, from the book "How humans evolved" by Robert Boyd, says that one of the problems Darwin had at the time was that he struggled to convincingly explain how variation could be maintained; ...
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How do migrating geese handle hurricanes?

I live on the East coast of the United States, where we are in hurricane season. This week during my morning bike rides in Charlotte, North Carolina, I have seen migrating Canadian geese. I'm curious ...
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Can a human increase cold resistance through some practice?

Can cold showers, moderate underdressing in cold weather increase your cold resistance? What is responsible for cold tolerance? It's physiology/psychology or it's genetic thing? By increasing cold ...
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Why Lungs can't work in water and gills can't work in air? [closed]

Animals-with-lungs (such as most terrestrial mammals) cannot continue breathing if merged in water, and soon die. Whereas fishes can breathe in water (at least for few-hours in case of some fishes ...
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Does Batesian mimicry rely on constant reinforcement?

If the species being mimicked, the monarch butterfly, for instance, were to become extinct, would the species mimicking it loose all of the benefit gained by their Batesian mimicry immediately? I ...
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Excessive sweating in dry heat [closed]

It's pre-monsoon season here in India. The temperatures in the Northwest of the country really take a spike around mid April. Apparently the heatwave-like conditions seem to have announced themselves ...
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Is there such thing as Animal non-verbal body language?

Have there been any studies done on the animal use of their bodies to signal, communicate or express their emotions, particularly to members of other species (ex: humans)? I've been observing a very ...
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Do any terrestrial herbivores use auditory crypsis for predator avoidance? [closed]

Some terrestrial predators "stalk" their prey: they sneak up on it slowly, maintaining a low profile, while keeping as close to silent as possible. This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective: ...
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Empirical evidence for Group Selection?

A controversial concept in Biology "Group Selection", has caused confusion and conflict amongst scientists since the since the mid 1990s. The more general realm of study is termed the "unit of ...
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How do coyotes remove cactus needles from their paws?

Here, in Arizona, coyotes roam and hunt in the desert. While hiking with dogs, I often see spiny bits of Teddy bear cholla cactus on the ground. Dogs often step on these and get stung by the ...
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Which organisms require the least fluctuation in ambient temperature?

Note that I am NOT asking "which organism can survive the most extreme temperatures." Many extremophiles like the tardigrade can survives extreme heat, but also extreme cold. Many heat adapted animals ...
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What makes delayed onset muscle soreness stop occurring?

If someone lifts weights or takes a long jog after not doing it for a while, they can experience delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). However, when they return to the same exercise days afterwards, ...
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Why is reducing the amount of detail required to remember the location of an object in one's environment adaptively significant?

In Campbell's Biology Chapter 51, question 36 reads: Which of the following shows the adaptive significance of cognitive mapping to animals that employ this type of learning? A) It increases the ...
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What is the difference between natural selection and adaptation?

From what I've read it seems that the only actual difference is that creationists use adaptation and people who believe in evolution use natural selection. But otherwise, from my understanding, the ...
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Is addiction adaptive?

Addiction and addictive traits seem common amongst animals. A pubmed query shows it's been studied in everything from humans to worms. My personal favorite of these is: "Individual Consistency ...
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Definition of “Regime of selection”

How would you define Regime of selection (or Selection regime)? In addition to a accurate definition, a developped example ...
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What are Some Classical Examples of Local Adaptation?

Question Can you please give a list of classical (textbook) examples of local adaptations? How to answer Examples don't necessarily need to include what evidence supports this specific example of ...
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Adaptation by standing genetic variation and fitness variance [duplicate]

I've read a couple of paper on Fisher's Fundamental Theory of Natural selection that states: $W(t+1) = W(t) + Var_{W}(t)$ Given a population with some degree of genetic variability, and assuming that ...
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Do lunar rhythms have really impact on plant growth?

It is commonly known that lunar rhythms have influence on plant growth, and there are even lunar calendars to know when planting, pruning, transplanting, harvesting, etc. I know that the lunar cycles ...
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A question regarding trichomes in plants

Trichomes in general are features of xerophytic leaves, which reduce water loss by evaporation by trapping water vapor and increasing humidity (as a result lowering the water potential gradient). BUT ...
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Genetic Diversity and Adaptation

I am somewhat new to evolutionary biology, having studied it on my free time as a computer science student. There is one particular thing that has always bothered me for which I have not seen a good ...
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Why is Pilobolus phototropic?

Pilobolus is a fungal genus whose fruiting bodies consist of a stalk ending in a spore mass that is launched via turgor pressure to disperse the spores. The fruiting bodies grow towards light, which ...
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Did the number of rods changed from ancient time?

Correct me if I am wrong, but I know that rods work under limited light conditions only. But now we are in a world that always have lights everywhere unlike ancient time when humans had to deal with ...
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Why do rabbits often have white hindquarters?

There are several species of herbivores that have a very visible white hindquarters: several kinds of deer, rabbits, antelopes, etc. Does the white fur serve a functional purpose, or is it purely ...
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Why is green fur not a thing?

In most biomes on earth, and certainly in the most densely-populated, the best camouflage color or pattern for an animal would be a variant of green, so as to blend in with the leaves and grasses of ...