Questions tagged [natural-selection]

A mechanism of evolution that leads to non-random spread of genes due to the effect that genes have on reproductive success.

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What evidence is there that mutations are random?

So correct me if I don't have this right: The scientific consensus is that mutations are random, but natural selection is not random. The beneficial mutations will be selected for by the enviromental ...
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Why are smaller mammals more prone to cancer and tumors

especially rats and mice usually develop cancer and tumors very fast, reducing their life expectancy. From an evolutionary point of view, how come that these mammals are so prone to cancer and tumors ...
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Are mosquitoes attracted to blue lights in particular?

I've been confronting the fact since childhood that mosquitoes are attracted to lights, especially blue lights. Now I know that all insects including mosquitoes are attracted to bright light but I ...
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Why might long telomeres be selected for in laboratory mice?

In a recent episode of The Portal, Eric Weinstein sits down with his brother Bret Weinstein to discuss Bret's Reserve-Capacity Hypothesis. It's an incredible story of scientific discovery and and ...
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Does technological developments terminate the evolution of human species? [duplicate]

One of the most agreed upon mechanism for evolution is natural selection.Changing environmental conditions necessities development of variations that enable the survival of that particular species....
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Is the frequency at which a species mutate affected by natural selection? [duplicate]

As per natural selection, is it safe to assume that some species will have it genetically encoded so that they produce a certain 'perfect' rate of mutation so that they can adapt to an environment ...
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Does natural selection still increase biological complexity?

I recently read The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins, which I found very interesting. In one of the last chapters, he gives multiple possible explanations to the question "Why did natural selection ...
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How does natural selection explain sexual display?

As I understand it, animals sometimes grow more vibrant colors, bigger feathers, elaborate dances, build shiny nests, all to impress the other sex. However, these are all superfluous to survival -- ...
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Evolution of recurrent laryngeal nerve in a giraffe [closed]

Do natural selection and survival of the fittest explain the divergent length of the recurrent laryngeal nerve...centimeters in the human, 15 feet in the giraffe?
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What are the implications/predictions of the selfish gene theory?

Are there any testable predictions or implications of the selfish gene theory? Or it is just interesting interpretation of the observations/experimental data? If this theory is not falsifiable and ...
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Is evolution always unidirectional?

Is it possible, at least in theory, for a species to evolve into another species and then evolve back into the first species?
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Examples of animals who 'forget' their offspring

Occasionally on the news I read about young children dying in hot cars on a sunny day. Usually the article reports that the parent(s) 'forgot' about their children still being in the car. Obviously ...
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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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What is the relationship between r/K strategy and filial infanticides?

In other words, is the frequency of killing one's own offspring among species dependent on their location on the r/K strategy spectrum?
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Why can't geese regurgitate food?

I saw this harrowing video on how barnacle goslings have to jump off very high cliffs because the parent's can't feed them. The death rate seems high. Why did natural selection come to favor jumping ...
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Is variation a result of Evolution?

We know that the DNA copying mechanism that replicates DNA during cellular division is not 100% accurate and the resultant errors are the source of variation in the members of a population. At the ...
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Sharks, alligators and Gould's “random walk” theory

I was thinking about Stephen Jay Gould's view on evolution as pure "random walk" / Drunkard's Walk, increasing or decreasing complexity in basically random fashion, just limited by death if an ...
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Are there any evolutionary reasons for the different tree shapes? If so, What are they?

So we know there are a thousand types of trees with different shapes. We have Columnar shaped trees: Pyramidal or Conical shaped trees: Weeping shaped trees: And we also have Round, Vased, Open-...
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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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Evolution of the haplo-diplontic life cycle

From wikipedia > Biological Life Cycle: haplontic life cycle - the haploid stage is multicellular and the diploid stage is a single cell, meiosis is "zygotic". diplontic life cycle - the diploid ...
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What problem does the Dobzhansky-Muller Model resolve?

This page describes the Dobzhansky-Muller model and I can follow the illustration of the split leading to incompatible hybrids. But at the start of the page the author states "[Dobzhansky and Muller] ...
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Can Females Songbirds Have Male Plumage?

Male birds are colorful for courtship displays, females are dull for camouflage. But, is written in a website somewhere that sometimes, when females birds are sterile, they grow male plumage due to ...
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Increase rate of change in coding regions?

If a sequence is under selection will it acquire more changes over time because of faster fixation than if changes were neutral? Is this true or am I missing something?
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Are Males the main evolutionary tool for production of genetic variation necessary for evolution?

What I'm saying here is just a personal reflection, that might turn to be gravely erroneous, actually I'm asking that because I didn't see it presented elsewhere. Evolution is propelled by two ...
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Is this model of understanding of what's natural selection and what's not, correct? [closed]

Here in this account I just want to make sure, that I've grasped the concept of natural selection as is usually spoken by evolutionary biologists, truly the wording here are non standard and in some ...
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Are inadvertent environmental catastrophes also examples of natural selection?

I just want to understand the concept of natural selection and its relation to evolution. Evolution by natural selection occurs when we have hereditary trait(s) that causes an effect on reproduction ...
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What is the definition of “Natural Selection”?

Natural selection is the differential survival and reproduction of individuals due to differences in phenotype. Natural selection, a process that results in the adaptation of an organism to its ...
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Animal with “advantageous” trait in a environment where the trait is never utilized (high cold tolerance in mild climate) - natural selection occur?

If you were to put an animal with a certain type of seemingly advantageous "trait" into an environment where the trait was not necessarily needed, ex: Putting an animal with a high tolerance for cold ...
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What are the advantages of sexual reproduction over asexual reproduction? [closed]

What are the advantages of sexual reproduction over asexual reproduction? How does variation influence ecological and evolutionary success?
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Does natural selection select for randomness in development?

In a podcast with Sean Carroll and Liv Boeree they discuss a result from game theory that the optimal strategy in the face of incomplete information can require random decision making. For example, ...
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Finding intensity of selection against dominant homozygotes

I was looking at some Olympiad questions and came across the following: If the frequency of a completely recessive allele is $0.2$ and it remains unchanged from generation to generation due to ...
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Balancing selection vs introgression?

Balancing selection can maintain polymorphisms in natural populations for extended periods of evolutionary time. However, in this paper, Dannemann et al. 2016 identify three archaic haplotypes in the ...
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Ways creatures evolove [closed]

I can't find the right answers to my questions online . are there other ways creatures evolove apart form nsatural selection? Thank you
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Does consistency in minor allele frequency of a SNP across populations imply selection?

If a particular SNP has very similar MAF value across multiple largely non-overlapping populations, with the assumption of no gene flow between the populations over many generations, would that then ...
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You need DNA to make RNA, and RNA to make DNA, so they had to come into existence at the same time?

A statement I recently read: 'Evolution is debunked and gives no basis for morality. Natural Selection throws away info, it does not add. You need DNA to make RNA, and RNA to make DNA, so they had to ...
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Book on the history of Darwin's discoveries and development of his theory

This question is a book request. I am wondering if there are any books with these elements: Tells the history of Darwin's discoveries. Captures Darwin's changing views of the origins of species, ...
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Exact terminology of natural selection

You don't need to explain to me what the theory of evolution is, or how it works. This question is purely about what exact meaning the word "natural selection" is ascribed to. There seem to be ...
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Is it possible to calculate the evolutionary response to nonlinear selection gradient as a change in variance of phenotypes?

I often see the breeders equation written like this: $R = h^2s = \frac{V_a}{V_z}s = V_a\beta$ or $\Delta \bar z = G\beta$ But is it possible to get something like this: $\Delta \sigma_z = G\...
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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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Do beneficial viruses exist? If so, what examples are there?

Typically, people call viruses some kind of organic compounds that cannot reproduce autonomously and which lower the fitness of their hosts. Even the word "virus" means "venom" in Latin. But from the ...
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Killing more attractive mates — intersexual selection strategy? [closed]

Is this the affinity or core part of intersexual selection (males fighting for access to females)? If females are bound to flock to objectively more attractive man 'A' in the majority of cases, would ...
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Background selection and hitchhiking effect

As I read the maintenance or removal of an allele from a population is dependent upon the alleles in its linkage group; so, when an advantageous mutation occurs in the population, variation in nearby ...
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Finding for evolution, comparing past flower numbers with present

In a hypothetical species of butterfly, wing spots are controlled by a single locus where BB individuals have blue spots, YY individuals have yellow spots, and BY individuals have green spots. Ten ...
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Does natural selection apply to entire populations as it does to individual organisms?

The context: the other day I was reading an article about a peculiar species of ant that when threatened by a predator would “explode” in order to help protect the rest of the colony, although it ...
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How does better sperm result in more viable offspring?

Quoting wikipedia: Greater choice and variety of mates increases a female's chance to produce more viable offspring. This led me to the question: "How sperm parameters are connected with entity ...
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Many black people I've met have bigger lips than white people, why? [duplicate]

I noticed that many black-ish people I've met have bigger lips than the white-ish people I've met. However, not all black-ish people have big lips. Is there any explanations in terms of natural ...
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Impact of Natural Selection on Population Size

I have conducted a lab with my IB Biology 11 class, regarding changes in allele frequencies within generations overseeing the natural selection of an advantageous phenotype. We were looking to ...
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Selective pressure for reduced rates of growth and maturity in primates

Humans are somewhat notable for the slow rate at which they grow and reach physical maturity. Some related primates also take over a decade to reach sexual maturity. However, many mammals – ...
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How could a species be engineered to go extinct?

Non-biology background here. I read this very interesting article: https://www.wired.com/story/crispr-eradicate-invasive-species/ However I am having a hard time wrapping my head around something: ...
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How did humans know the process of domesticating animals?

If people in ancient times had no scientific knowledge about natural selection and Darwinism, how were they knowledgeable about animal domestication and artificial selection? What tools and ...

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