Natural Selection Essay

1349 words - 6 pages

The process of natural selection can occur in a variety of species and can be considered the most important process for the environment to create the fittest organisms to produce offspring. If a species is unable to adapt to the changes of the environment around them, the species is likely to become extinct. A species that is able to adapt to their surroundings will be able to pass along their genes through reproduction.
In natural selection there can be different developments that occur that change the original genetic make-up of a species. Some of these changes can be altered through the mechanisms of evolution. In this paper, the team will explain the different processes of basic ...view middle of the document...

The founder effect occurs when a new population with a gene pool that differs from the parent population forms in a new location. This can happen when a few individuals colonize in a new location or new habitat (Campbell, et al 2007).
A big factor in genetic drift is the size of the gene pool. A larger gene pool will better represent the gene pool of the previous generation whereas a smaller gene pool may not be as accurate due to sampling errors. Smaller populations will experience genetic drift but larger populations may not see significant effects.
Gene flow is another mechanism of evolution. Gene flow occurs when a population may gain or lose alleles by the migration of fertile individuals between populations or when gametes are transferred between populations (Campbell, et al 2007). Although gene flow tends to reduce differences in populations, it may lead to changes to the allele frequencies in a gene pool which can cause the organism to evolve.
Another mechanism of evolution is mutation that arises in the gene pool of an individual or a population. A mutation is a change in an organisms DNA (Campbell, et al 2007). Mutation serves as a raw material for natural selection and is the original source of the genetic variation. Although, individual mutations have relatively little short term effect on a large gene pool, in the long-term mutation is the source of genetic variation (Campbell, et al 2007). How Natural Selection Results in BiodiversityAs mentioned previously, natural selection occurs when an environment causes an individual to adapt to that certain situation by creating variations in the species alleles. Natural selection leads to changes in the gene pool by influencing the population sizes; therefore, only certain genes and specific alleles are selected to be passed on to offspring. This is what leads to the population adaptation to the new environment and biodiversity within a species (Campbell, et al 2007).
These changes in environment can even be large enough to cause alterations that will lead to the formation of a new species. When a new species is created through natural selection, there are two ways that this can occur - allopatric speciation and sympatric speciation (Campbell, et al 2007). In allopatric speciation, a part of a species is isolated from the original population. This can occur due to a physical barrier such as a large body of water or mountain. During sympatric speciation the affected population is not physically removed but the splinter population becomes reproductively isolated from the original population (Campbell, et al 2007).
Why Biodiversity is Important to Continue EvolutionBiodiversity is the variability of all living organisms and the basis for the different ecosystems and habitats. These ecosystems and habitats provide the necessary resources that is essential to maintain life on earth. A few examples of some basic functions of a healthy ecosystem would be the production of...

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