22 Dec 2022


Speciation - The Formation of New Species

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The lab report is an attempt to explain what is likely to happen should a species of lizards get separated into two groups by a hurricane essentially creating a barrier with one group living on the mainland and the other on an island. 


Speciation occurs when a new species develops from the separation of some members of a species, often by natural phenomena such as earthquakes or hurricanes. In the event of such a separation, the larger group that remains in the mainland will likely stay the same. However, the group that was separated and landed on the island will naturally adapt to the new habitat and over time develop some characteristics that reflect the new habitat and different from the lizards that were left on the mainland ( Audesirk, Audesirk & Byers, 2008). The lizards on the island will evolve into a new species. The environmental influences will exert selective and adaptive pressures that will force the lizards to make changes in their characteristics that suit the new habitat ( Wilke, Väinolä & Riedel, 2009). 

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Hypothesis/Predicted Outcome 

If a group of a species of lizards is split into two groups by natural phenomena such as a hurricane, the group that was separated from the rest and was driven to an island will adapt to the new habitat. 


The MUSE model presented some evidential data to the effect that the species of mice when separated from the mice community and landed on an island, the gradually evolved into a different species by adapting to the new environment ( National Geographic Society, 2015). The adaptation and consequent development of new characteristics are known as speciation. Speciation is often caused by natural phenomena such as earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes or any other natural phenomenon that can cause the disruption of the lives of various species (National Geographic Society, 2015). 


If the lizards were split into two groups by a natural phenomenon resulting in permanent separation, the two groups are likely to develop different characteristics which are unique to that group. The group that will show significant changes is the group that landed in a different habitat. The changes in characteristics would occur as the lizards adapt to the new environment. 


The lab activity demonstrated how species changes their characteristic due to environmental pressures and the need to survive. The separated lizard is expected to adapt to the island’s habitat. Such developments have been observed among the polar bears which even developed different colors of the fur to the food the bears consume. 


Audesirk, T., Audesirk, G., & Byers, B. (2008). Biology: Life on Earth with physiology , Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall. 

Ayala, F. & Arp, R. (2009). Contemporary debates in philosophy of biology , John Wiley & Sons. 

Wilke, T., Väinolä, R. & Riedel, F. (2009). Patterns and Processes of Speciation in Ancient Lakes: Proceedings of the Fourth Symposium on Speciation in Ancient Lakes, Berlin, Germany, September 4-8, 2006 , Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media. 

National Geographic Society (2015). Speciation: encyclopedic entry. Retrieved from: http/educationnationalgeographic.com/education/encyclopedia/speciation?ar-a=1 

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