Eliel Pepito 8/1/10 The Beak of the Finch Summary The Beak of the Finch by Jonathan Weiner explores evolution through the most famous examples in history—the finches of the Galápagos Islands. Charles Darwin’s theory of natural selection and the process of evolution are applied directly to what scientists refer to as Darwin’s Finches. Weiner follows scientists Peter and Rosemary Grant as they study the finches in real time on the Galápagos. Years of previous work, study and data is collected and analyzed. Different species of animals are observed and explained throughout history. The Grants have one goal, and that is to find the origin of the species, how organisms first began. They find that it really is about the “survival of the
Why were some Finches able to survive while other Finches died? On the Galápagos Islands off the coast near Ecuador we studied the behaviors of the animals, plants and environment on Daphne Major we found that the lack of rainfall during the wet season of 1977 caused most of the plants to produce less seeds and thus most of the medium ground finches died of starvation as their main food source had become scarce. Although the lack of seeds some finches were able to survive with their longer and bigger beaks. They were able to survive because their beaks were able to break open the harder and more plentiful Tribulus seeds that survived the dry season of 1977.
Darwin has listed different names for each bird, they are all variations of Finches, apparently descended from a common ancestor. However, each bird has a different length beak and many are differently shaped to allow them to more efficiently eat the available fodder. Coincidentally, Mr. Darwin failed to catalog specifically where each bird came from and had to ask the ship’s captain to supply this information along with his collection to Mr. Gould for identification and cataloging. An interesting part of the conversation between Mr. Darwin and the ship’s captain is the captain’s argument for the fixity of species, that each one was created by God exactly the way it was, and placed on each island, and that it is heresy to say that they came to be there any other way.
In 1976 there was a drought that caused many finches to die off in the Galapagos islands. Two scientists, Rosemary and Peter Grant, studied the island for 6 months each year for 5 years. They recorded, that during the dry season of 1976, there was not even a centimeter of
The Galapagos Islands consists of thirteen major islands and over a hundred smaller islands located along the Ecuadorian coast. The islands are home to a variety of unique species such as sea lions, sharks, rays, and 26 different species of native birds. Thirteen of these birds are Darwin’s finches. These finches are known to be the “world’s fastest-evolving vertebrates” due to their bodies quickly adapting to the rapidly changing environment (Robertson, N.D. , para.1). Their DNA chemical makeup causes these adaptations to occur. The finch’s most noticeable feature is their evolutionary adaptations, due to the briskly changing environments.
There is only one way that the finches could have died in those numbers with the current circumstances, and that is starvation. This lack food was brought on by a terrible drought (see graph 1) that destroyed the plants that fed the Galapagos Finches. When the drought hit, most finches did not mate, and so stunted the growth of the population as well as kill many of their number.
The Great Blue Heron is one of six species of Herons. Great Blue Herons live in fresh and saltwater marshes, isolated swamps or on islands and near lakes and ponds that have neighboring forests. During the summer they stay in parts of southern Canada and the Midwestern United States. During the winter they reside in Mexico. They migrate in groups of 3-100 in August to the southern coast of the U.S., Mexico, and Central America, sometimes traveling as far as Panama.
There's a little bird endemic to the United States that's in big trouble, particularly in the East Coast. Scientists fear that the saltmarsh sparrow could go extinct in as little as five decades.
In conclusion the Galapagos Finches suffered a mass near extinction, although there was a secret weapon the survivors had, beak size. The beak size not only helped the- -survivors survive, but it helped them eat, see figure 2. The rainfall amount (see figure 1) played a major role in the extinction of the finches by taking out the food sources. Lastly the Galapagos finches went to the urge of extinction, but thankfully they were not all taken out by the lessened
“A number of other finches evolved later from the Warbler finches. One of these is the Ceospiza ground finch, whose broad beak is crushing seeds and another is the Camarhychus tree finch with its blunt beak which is well adapted for tearing vegation." Dawin's theory makes sense. I can grasp
Darwin's finches, inhabiting the Galápagos archipelago and Cocos island, constitute an iconic model for studies of speciation and adaptive evolution. A team of scientists from Uppsala University and Princeton University has now shed light on the evolutionary history of these birds and identified a gene that explains variation in beak shape within and among species. The study is published today in Nature, on the day before the 206th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin.
Today, I chose to write about the Adelie Penguin, and my knowledge of this bird consists of penguins that (appear to) wear tuxedos, plus comparable to all penguins, Adele Penguins captivate us with intense cuteness.
To support his idea for Natural Selection he used finches,tortoise as evidence, in them he noticed patterns of diversity. This observation led to the question, “Why would God produce various organisms and put them on identical islands?” this sparked the idea of Natural Selection. He noticed that all the islands were similar in climates but had various differences in the animals. On each different island he found a different type of finche depending on the environment they lived in. Some of them had big beaks, small beaks, needle like beaks, etc. Darwin noticed that the different beaks helped each of them survive and gave them an advantage in the environment over other animals. He noticed similar differences in tortoises, some had
It is one of the most amazing things when you first hear your african grey parrot talking. Not only because the words are intelligible but also because the bird does a very good job of mimicing your voice as well. It shouldn't really be all that surprising as the african grey parrot is highly intelligent and
Like Wangari Maathai, my spirit animal would be a hummingbird. This creature will not have a significant impact on the world alone because it is small in nature. However, hummingbirds are quick and swift which is their power. Harnessing this power allows them to glide from place to place efficiently and fulfill their duties of pollinating the world's plantlife. I see myself as a hummingbird because I am small. Alone, I cannot help the world all by myself. But, as I move from place to place helping others, I could work with the world around me to create something powerful out of teamwork to make an impact on the world. Referring to the real world, I do this through volunteer organizations that I am passionate about. Realistically, we are all