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86 Cards in this Set

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pleiotropic
what amount of tissue is pleiotropic?
DNA expressed in a variety of tissues; 90%
polygenetic
having more than one origin or source.
gene
a unit of heredity that is transferred from a parent to offspring and is held to determine some characteristic of the
gene expression (regulation)
how a particular trait is manifested
speciation
the formation of new and distinct species in the course of evolution
equilibrium
- punctuated stability following a sudden change, often in a shift in environment; or a
- new niche
- rise of new competitor
- new trait that spreads quickly
trait
considered polygenic
a genetically determined characteristic
DNA
deoxyribonucleic acid
- once considered ‘blueprint’ for organism
- Only about 1% are ‘genes’ coded for proteins
- Some are non-coded ‘regulatory genes” that affect gene expression
- inert, but other molecules can act on it
conflict
an evolutionary clash central to the theory of natural selection
cooperation
working together to achieve an end
stabilizing selection
tends towards the mean
diversifying selection
several types of one type; tends towards the extremes
directional selection
some pressure pushes the whole species in a direction
artificial selection
an extenuating pressure exerts itself on a species
primate
a mammal distinguished by having hands, hand-like feet, forward facing eyes, and typically agile in arboreal settings
anthropoids
extinct primates distinguished by larger brains, reduced noses, 32 teeth and no tooth comb.
hominoids
a primate of a group that includes humans, human ancestors, and great apes
hominids
a primate of a family that includes humans and their fossil ancestors
arboreal
tree-dwelling
bipedalism
walking upright on two feet
brachiation
anatomical trait of primates in which the shoulder socket can rotate the arm above the head
trichromatic vision
vision sensitive to the three primary colors
exaptation
Trait selected for one function that may serve later for a different purpose.
locomotion
movement or the ability to move from one place to another
robust
- refers to characteristics developed by a species in reaction to an environmental pressure
- example: developing teeth more adapted for chewing nuts than meat
gracile
a slender build in a hominid species
competitive exclusion
Two animals trying to occupy the same niche – usually only one survives
taphonomy
study of how remains come to be deposited in the form that they are found — site formation.
australopithecus
- a fossil bipedal primate with both apelike and human characteristics
- found in Pliocene and lower Pleistocene deposits (4-1 mya)
paranthropus
a genus applied to a robust fossil hominid first found in South Africa
foramen magnum
- the hole in the base of the skull through which the spinal cord passes
- defining characteristic of bipedal creatures
ilium
a large broad bone forming the upper part of each half of the pelvis
relative dating methods
a dating method that relies on comparative analysis of surrounding deposits
absolute dating methods
a dating method that employs radiometric techniques such as carbon dating to determine the age of a deposit
stratigraphy
the analysis of the order and position of layers of archaeological finds
mosaic evolution
a development of certain functions as a species progresses; linked to sociability
modular intelligence
refers to the specialization of brain tissue functions
abstract thought
dealing with ideas rather than events
promiscuous interface
ability to take modules and put them together; chained thought
mirror neurons
a neuron that fires both when an animal acts and when the animal observes the same action performed by another
encephalization
brain/body size ratio
cerebral cortex
the outer layer of the cerebrum composed of folded gray matter
plays an integral role in consciousness
neoteny
the retention of juvenile features in an adult
social brain hypothesis
- Average group size correlates with the ratio of neocortex to the rest of the brain.
- grooming is a central characteristic
expensive tissue hypothesis
Large brain is energy hungry
- Brain tissue expends 9x body tissue average.
- Need for energy-rich food.
radiator hypothesis
Argues that an expanding brain requires cooling, particularly in a hot environment such as the African savanna; consequently, a bipedal creature would develop openings in the skull to flow blood through the brain in order to cool it (emissary foramina)
allometry
the growth of body parts at different rates
altricial
newborn that develops slowly and requires care
precocial
newborn that is immediately able to care for itself upon birth
human exceptionalism
humans are the exception to the rules of other species
promiscuity
the concept of a sexually reserved female/male vs. a sexually active male/female
polygamy
practice of having more than one wife/husband at once
polygyny
where a man has more than one wife
monogamy
married to one person at a time
sexual dimorphism
Differences between male and female
sexual selection
natural selection arising through preference by one sex for certain characteristics in individuals of the other sex.
sperm competition
competition between sperm of two or more males for the fertilization of an ovum
co-sleeping
practice of having children sleep in the same bed as the parents
estrus
the period of sexual receptivity in female mammals
menarche
the first menstruation
homology
in this sense, that male and female organs are biologically similar
obstetrical dilemma
refers to the evolutionary development of the human species through a number of biological changes
- specifically the shifting of the females' pelvic bones, thereby shortening the fetal incubation period.
spandrel
describes a phenotypic characteristic that is a byproduct of the evolution of a different characteristic, instead of a direct product of adaption
behavioural ecology
the study of the ecological and evolutionary basis for animal behavior, and the roles of behavior in enabling an animal to adapt to its environment (both intrinsic and extrinsic)
intraspecific competition
Competition among individuals of the same species
interspecific competition
individuals of different species vie for the different resource in an ecosystem
phylogeny
the study of evolutionary relatedness among various groups of organisms
ontogeny
describes the origin and the development of an organism from the fertilized egg to its mature form.
philopatric
tending to return to or remain near a particular site or area.
matrifocal units
mum is head of the pack
morphology
the study of the form of living organisms
teleology
the explanation of phenomena by the purpose they serve rather than by postulated causes.
species
a group of living organisms consisting of similar individuals capable of exchanging genes or interbreeding.
convergence
the tendency of unrelated animals to evolve superficially similar characteristics under similar environmental conditions.
phenotype
the set of observable characteristics of an individual organism
genotype
the genetic constitution of an individual organism.
epigenetic
resulting from external rather than genetic influences
eusocial
showing an advanced level of social organization, in which a single female or caste produces the offspring and nonreproductive individuals cooperate in caring for the young.
virilocal
a married couple resides with or near the husband's parents
drone
a male bee in a colony of social bees, which does no work but can fertilize a queen.
polymorphous
the occurrence of different forms among the members of a population or colony, or in the life cycle of an individual organism.
scramble competition
Competition for a resource that is inadequate for the needs of all, but is partitioned equally among contestants, so no competitor obtains the amount it needs and in extreme cases all die
nutritional ecology
study of the food chain from birth to death
mating pool
the group of females open to reproduction
in humans, this is socially determined
incest taboos
refer to a class of prohibitions, both formal and informal, stated and unstated, against incest
fitness
describes the capability of an individual of certain genotype to reproduce