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32 Cards in this Set

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What do half of all Americans believe?
No life forms have changed since the beginning of time. Life was created AS IS by an intelligence and that it is IMMUTABLE.
What are 3 principles of special creation?
-Species were created recently
-Species were created independently of one another
-Species do not change over time
What are 3 principles of descent with modification?
-Species change over time
-Species are derived from a common ancestor
-The earth is old, and species have not recently been created
What species provides evidence of change in living species?
Soapberry bugs
The story behind Soapberry bugs
Soapberry bugs are native to Key Largo in the Florida Keys. Their native food is a balloon vine which contains large round fruit. When they feed, they use their long beaks to pierce the fruit and liquify its contents. In the 1950s though the Asian relative of the host plant, the golden rain tree, was introduced by gardeners in the area. This plant has flat, shallower fruit. Thus long beaks are not required for feeding. It was found that the soapberry bugs feeding on these plants had shorter beaks.
What two hypothesis did scientists have regarding changes in beak length in soapberry bugs? How did they resolve the issue and what conclusions were drawn?
Did the bugs evolve to have shorter beaks or do the beaks only grow to the beak length required by the foods they feed on as they grow? To rule out this possibility, soapberry bugs from Key Largo and Lake Wales were collected and grown on both plant hosts. It was found that the bugs from Key Largo grew long beaks regardless of the type of fruit they were feeding on. Similarly, bugs from Lake Wales developed short beaks regardless of the type of fruit they were feeding on. If the alternative hypothesis has been true than the bugs should have developed short beaks when feeding on the Asian golden rain tree and long beaks when feeding on the balloon vine. Thus these results show that the bugs from the two populations are genetically different. The short beaked bugs from Lake Wales descended with modification from long-beaked ancestors.
What additional proof did scientists gather to prove that soapberry bug beaks are not immutable?
To prove this, scientists measured beak lengths of soapberry bugs that had been collected in Florida and had been preserved in the museum. The data showed documented that there had been a reduction in beak length in the bugs following the introduction of the Asian golden rain tree.
What happened with balloon vines were introduced in Australia?
In Australia, the native soapberry bug has a short beak. When the Florida balloon vine was introduced the native soapberry bugs began to feed on it. Over time, those soapberry bugs that fed on the balloon vine developed a longer beak. Thus this shows that the characteristics of soapberry bugs are not immutable but change over time.
What are vestigial structures and what does Darwin argue about them?
Structures that are currently useless in a species but were once an important function in a closely related species. Darwin argues that vestigial structures are inexplicable under the theory of special creation but interpretable under the theory of evolution.
What are some vestigial structures?
Wings on flightless birds such as the Kiwi and tiny hind legs on snakes such as the rubber boa.
What is a vestigial structure at the molecular level in humans? How does it prove the theory of evolution?
Humans have a 92 base pair deletion on chromosome 6 encoding for the enzyme CMAH. CMAH is an enzyme that converts an acidic sugar from one form to another. Cells that produce this acidic sugar display their converted form on their cellular membrane. Since humans cannot form CMAH we do not display this converted form of the acidic sugar on our membranes like gorillas, chimpanzees, and other mammals. We display another biochemical signature on our membranes. Thus, this allows us to be immune from most malaria parasites found on these mammals. This again proves the theory of evolution because the 92 bp deletion can be explained by this theory but is hard to explain by the creationists theory that we were created in the present form with a deletion.
What are fossils?
Fossils are traces of organisms that lived in the past.
What list did Georges Cuvier publish and what belief did it challenge?
In 1801, Georges Cuvier published a list of 23 species that were not in existence. However, this was a challenge to the popular belief that these were just species that had not yet been discovered. Cuvier argued that many of these species were too large and if they existed we should have already found them.
How did the controversy over the fact of extinction end?
Controversy over the fact of extinction ended when Cuvier published a careful examination conducted on the Irish Elk. It was believed that the Irish Elk belonged to a living species such as the American moose or European reindeer. However, careful examination proved that the Irish Elk was neither moose or reindeer and did not belong to any species alive today. It was its own species and the species had become extinct.
How did special creationists argue about evolution? And Darwin? What did extinct species indicate about the Earth's flora and fauna?
Creationists argued that these species became extinct due to a series of floods akin to the biblical event at the time of Noah. Darwin argued that extinct species were relatives of living organisms and it pointed to the fact that Earth's flora and fauna have changed through time.
What is the law of succession? How is it explained by the theory of evolution?
The law of succession states that living species are similar to extinct species found in a given locale. For example, the armadillos of Argentina are strikingly similar to the glytodonts that were excavated there. Similarly, marsupials currently living in Australia strongly resemble extinct species found there. Darwin's theory of evolution gives a straightforward explanation that species alive today descended with modification from ancestors that lived in the same regions.
What are transitional forms of species? What are examples of transitional forms between dinosaur to bird?
If species descend with modification from earlier forms then there must be transitional forms that capture the transformation. In the evolution from dinosaurs to birds, fossils of Archaeopteryx and Sinosauropteryx prima were found. Sinosauropteryx prima is believed to be a dinosaur with bristly structures on its body. Archaeopyteryx is a bird that contains a dinosaur like skeleton.
What transitional form does Tiktaalik represent?
Intermediate form between fish and early tetrapods.
What type of fur did the ancestor of all cats have?
The most common ancestor of all cats had a flecked coat. The flecked coat later modified to become a rosette.
What transitional form does Tiktaalik represent?
Intermediate form between fish and early tetrapods.
What are ring species and what do they prove?
The Siberian Green Warbler is a ring species. Its geographic range is around the Tibetian Plateau where it forms a ring. Although the song of the warbler increases in complexity from south to north around both sides of the ring, the species recognize each other as members of the same species and interbreed. The exception is in central Siberia where the northeastern and northwestern forms of the warblers meet. Here the species do not recognize each other as the same species and refuse to interbreed. Thus we can see that one species has split into two.
What is homology and what are homologous structures? What did Cuvier and Owen study? How does the study provide evidence for the theory of evolution and not special creation?
Homology is the study of likeness. Homologous structures are structures that may outwardly look different and have different functions but are structurally very similar. In the 1800's Cuvier and Owen studied hand bone structures in humans, moles, bats, horses and other animals showing that though they had different functions and appeared different, the underlying design was the same in all. Homologous traits provide evidence for descent with modification becuase it makes sense that a common ancestor evolved to create the different functions of the hand. Such homologous structures would not make sense under the theory of special creation because it does not make sense that the "intelligent" use a similar design for the different species that use their hand for digging, swimming, grasping, etc.
What are some developmental homologies and why do they show similarity?
Embryos from different vertebrates show similarity because they all evolved from the same common ancestor, meaning that some of the developmental stages have remained the same in reptiles, birds and mammals over time. All the embryos have a Pharyngeal pouch and tail.
What is a molecular homology?
A molecular homology is the genetic code. Almost all organisms use the same nucleotides and same organization as codons.
What do common flaws in molecular homology reveal?
Shared flaws are very useful in distinguishing from special creation vs descent from a common ancestor. A shared flaw suggest common ancestry.
What is an example of nonhomologus structures?
Similar structures in species do not mean they are homologous and have a common ancestry. For example fins on whales and sharks are similar in function because of practical need living in similar environments but have different origins.
Differentiate between uniformitarianism and catastrophism. What are the names of the scientists behind uniformitarianism and what did their data prove about the age of the earth?
Geology became an important field of study around Darwin's time. Data from scientists Hutton and Lyell proved that the age of the Earth was much older than previously thought. They theorized uniformitarianism which claims that geological processes occuring today operated similarly in the past to create the immense rock formations. This was in contrast with catastrophism which held that today's geological formations were created by catastrophic events like the biblical flood.
What is relative dating and what are some of its assumptions?
Hutton and Lyell developed the concept of relative dating. The objective is to determine the age of each rock formation relative to other strata. They used logic based on some assumptions such as older rocks are found at the bottom, layers are set horizontally, and that earlier life forms are more simple than more recent life forms.
How was radioactive dating used and what is the half life of the Uranium-Lead and Potassium-Argon systems?
Radioactive dating was used to determine the age of the Earth. Uranium-Lead systems had a half life of 4.5 billion years while half life of Potassium-Argon sytems is 1.3 billion years.
How old is the earth?
Meteorites found on earth date earth back to 4.6 by. Moon rocks date back 4.53 by.
How long has the earth been evolving?
Paleantological evidence of cyanobacteria and eukaryotic cells date to 2 by. Geological biomolecules found date back to 2.7 by. Chemical evidence dates back 3.7 by (controversial)
Differentiate between Methodological Naturalism and Ontological Naturalism.
Methodological Naturalists ASSUME that nothing else exists out of nature and that explanations of natural phenomena are can only be explained by natural causes, not supernatural. Ontological naturalists go a step further and BELIEVE that natural phenomena occur only from natural causes and not the supernatural.