1) What is the binomial system of nomenclature? Who developed this system? Is the name Escherichia coli written correctly?
2) Read the section on Ernst Mayr’s biological species concept discussed on page 275. Then use the information in the following sections to describe prezygotic barriers and postzygotic barriers. Please include three examples of each type of barrier.
3) Define allopatric, sympatric, and parapatric speciation.
4) Contrast gradualism and punctuated equilibrium. What is adaptive radiation?
5) What is the background extinction rate? What is a mass extinction? How many mass extinctions have occurred on this planet? Are we in one now?
6) What is a cladogram? How are the common ancestors represented? Define monophyletic, paraphyletic, and polyphyletic cladograms. Which one best represents the principle of parsimony?
7) Discuss the origin of the membrane bound cell. Which cell type came first, prokaryote or eukaryote? Which of these two cell types is the most complex? Briefly discuss how this complexity came to be (you can discuss endosymbiosis, cooperation, etc).
8) How did Cyanobacteria influence the Earth’s atmosphere to make it habitable to larger life forms?
9) About how soon after Earth formed did life first appear, according to fossil evidence? How much longer did it take multicellular organisms to colonize land?
10) Use the internet to learn about National Geographic’s Genographic Project. What are the main objectives and components of the project, and how are researchers using the information they gather to learn more about human evolution?
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