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Biology Chapter 10


What term describes the theory that natural disasters shaped Earth's landforms and caused species to become extinct?

Carolus Linneaus

Which scientist developed a classification system based on similarities?

Fossils are traced to organisms that lived in the past.

What was not commonly believed in the 1700s?


Which theory of geologic change is accepted by today's scientists?

length of neck & legs

What adaptations did Darwin see in the tortoises of the Galapagos Islands?


What term describes a feature that allows an organism to better survive in its environment?


What term describes all the individuals of a species that live in an area?

No, natural selection only works on existing variations.

Can natural selection cause variations?

homologous structure

What term describes features that are similar in structure but different in function?

transitional fossil

a fossil that has characteristics of two groups of organisms


the process of biological change by which descendants come to differ from their ancestors.


Swedish botanist who developed a classification system for all types of organisms known at the time.


a group of organisms so similar to one another that they can reproduce and have fertile offspring.


French naturalist of the who proposed that species shared ancestors instead of arising separately; also he said that the earth was >6000 years old.

Charles Lyell

a geologist whose work helped inspire Darwin's writings.

Erasmus Darwin

Charles Darwin's grandfather; English doctor and poet; proposed that all living things were descended from a common ancestor.


French naturalist who proposed that all organisms evolved toward perfection and complexity; he did not think that species became extinct.


French zoologist who thought that species did not change or become extinct.


traces of organisms that existed in the past.


states that natural disasters such as floods & volcanic eruptions have happened often during Earth's long history and that these events shaped landforms and caused species to become extinct in the process.


slow changes over a long period of time; first proposed by James Hutton


proposes that present geologic processes are the key to the past

Charles Lyell

one of the leading supporters of the argument for an ancient Earth; wrote "Principles of Geology" and agreed with Hutton on Uniformitarianism.


the difference in the physical traits of an individual from those of other individuals in the group to which it belongs.


variation that occurs among members of different species.


variation that occurs among individuals of the same species.


a feature that allows an organism to better survive in its environment; they can lead to a genetic change in the population over time.

artificial selection

the process by which humans change a species by breeding it for certain traits.


what is the selective agent in artificial selection?


the ability of a trait to be passed down from one generation to the next.

the environment

what is the selective agent in natural selection?

natural selection

a mechanism by which individuals that have inherited beneficial adaptations produce more offspring on avg than do other individuals.


English economist who proposed that resources such as food, water, and shelter were natural limits to population growth.


all the individuals of a species that live in an area.

variation, overproduction, adaption, descent with modification

Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace came up with 4 main principles to the theory of natural selection.


a measure of the ability to survive and produce more offspring relative to other members of the population in a given environment.


Natural selection acts on _______.

genetic mutations

New alleles are not made by natural selection-they occur by _______ ________.


the study of the distribution of organisms around the world.

homologous structures

features that are similar in structure but appear in different organisms and have different functions.

analogous structures

structures that perform a similar function but are not similar in origin.

vestigial structures

remnants of organs or structures that had a function in an early ancestor.


the study of fossils or extinct organisms


Because all living things have DNA, they share the same genetic code and make most of the same proteins from the same 20 amino acids.


a DNA sequence that resembles a gene but seems to have no function.

homobox gene

genes that control the development of specific structures.

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