Evolution Practice test Multiple Choice



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Evolution Practice test
Multiple Choice

Identify the choice that best completes the statement or answers the question.
____ 1. What was the prevailing notion prior to the time of Lyell and Darwin?

a.

Earth is a few thousand years old, and populations are unchanging.

b.

Earth is a few thousand years old, and populations gradually change.

c.

Earth is millions of years old, and populations rapidly change.

d.

Earth is millions of years old, and populations are unchanging.

e.

Earth is millions of years old, and populations gradually change.

____ 2. During a study session about evolution, one of your fellow students remarks, "The giraffe stretched its neck while reaching for higher leaves; its offspring inherited longer necks as a result." Which statement is most likely to be helpful in correcting this student's misconception?



a.

Characteristics acquired during an organism's life are generally not passed on through genes.

b.

Spontaneous mutations can result in the appearance of new traits.

c.

Only favorable adaptations have survival value.

d.

Disuse of an organ may lead to its eventual disappearance.

e.

Overproduction of offspring leads to a struggle for survival.

____ 3. Which group is composed entirely of individuals who maintained that species are fixed (i.e., unchanging)?



a.

Aristotle, Cuvier, and Lamarck

b.

Linnaeus, Cuvier, and Lamarck

c.

Lyell, Linnaeus, and Lamarck

d.

Aristotle, Linnaeus, and Cuvier

e.

Hutton, Lyell, and Darwin



The following questions refer to Figure 22.1, which shows an outcrop of sedimentary rock whose strata are labeled A-D.

Figure 22.1
____ 4. Who would have proposed that the boundaries between each stratum mark the occurrence of different localized floods?

a.

Lyell

b.

Cuvier

c.

Hutton

d.

Darwin

e.

Lamarck

____ 5. As a young biologist, Charles Darwin had expected the living plants of temperate South America would resemble those of temperate Europe, but he was surprised to find that they more closely resembled the plants of tropical South America. The biological explanation for this observation is most properly associated with the field of



a.

meteorology.

b.

embryology.

c.

vertebrate anatomy.

d.

bioengineering.

e.

biogeography.

____ 6. A biologist studied a population of squirrels for 15 years. During that time, the population was never fewer than 30 squirrels and never more than 45. Her data showed that over half of the squirrels born did not survive to reproduce, because of competition for food and predation. In a single generation, 90% of the squirrels that were born lived to reproduce, and the population increased to 80. Which inference(s) about this population might be true?



a.

The amount of available food may have increased.

b.

The number of predators may have decreased.

c.

The squirrels of subsequent generations should show greater levels of genetic variation than previous generations, because squirrels that would not have survived in the past will now survive.

d.

A and B only

e.

A, B, and C



The following questions refer to the evolutionary tree in Figure 22.2.
The tree's horizontal axis is a timeline that extends from 100,000 years ago to the present; the vertical axis represents nothing in particular. The labeled branch points on the tree (V—Z) represent various common ancestors. Let's say that only since 50,000 years ago has there been enough variation between the lineages depicted here to separate them into distinct species, and only the tips of the lineages on this tree represent distinct species.

Figure 22.2
____ 7. According to this tree, what percent of the species seem to be extant (i.e., not extinct)?

a.

25%

b.

33%

c.

50%

d.

66%

e.

75%

____ 8. Which statement best describes the evolution of pesticide resistance in a population of insects?



a.

Individual members of the population slowly adapt to the presence of the chemical by striving to meet the new challenge.

b.

All insects exposed to the insecticide begin to use a formerly silent gene to make a new enzyme that breaks down the insecticide molecules.

c.

Insects observe the behavior of other insects that survive pesticide application, and adjust their own behaviors to copy those of the survivors.

d.

Offspring of insects that are genetically resistant to the pesticide become more abundant as the susceptible insects die off.

____ 9. Some members of a photosynthetic plant species are genetically resistant to an herbicide, while other members of the same species are not resistant to the herbicide. Which combination of events should cause the most effective replacement of the non-herbicide-resistant strain of plants by the resistant strain?



1.

The presence of the herbicide in the environment

2.

The absence of the herbicide from the environment

3.

The maintenance of the proper conditions for one generation

4.

The maintenance of the proper conditions for many generations




a.

1 and 3

b.

1 and 4

c.

2 and 3

d.

2 and 4

____ 10. If two modern organisms are distantly related in an evolutionary sense, then one should expect that



a.

they live in very different habitats.

b.

they should share fewer homologous structures than two more closely related organisms.

c.

their chromosomes should be very similar.

d.

they shared a common ancestor relatively recently.

e.

they should be members of the same genus.

____ 11. Ichthyosaurs were aquatic dinosaurs. Fossils show us that they had dorsal fins and tails, as do fish, even though their closest relatives were terrestrial reptiles that had neither dorsal fins nor aquatic tails. The dorsal fins and tails of ichthyosaurs and fish are



a.

homologous.

b.

examples of convergent evolution.

c.

adaptations to a common environment.

d.

A and C only

e.

B and C only

____ 12. It has been observed that organisms on islands are different from, but closely related to, similar forms found on the nearest continent. This is taken as evidence that



a.

island forms and mainland forms descended from common ancestors.

b.

common environments are inhabited by the same organisms.

c.

the islands were originally part of the continent.

d.

the island forms and mainland forms are converging.

e.

island forms and mainland forms have identical gene pools.

____ 13. The theory of evolution is most accurately described as



a.

an educated guess about how species originate.

b.

one possible explanation, among several scientific alternatives, about how species have come into existence.

c.

an opinion that some scientists hold about how living things change over time.

d.

an overarching explanation, supported by much evidence, for how populations change over time.

e.

an idea about how acquired characteristics are passed on to subsequent generations.

____ 14. Which of the following is not an observation or inference on which natural selection is based?



a.

There is heritable variation among individuals.

b.

Poorly adapted individuals never produce offspring.

c.

Species produce more offspring than the environment can support.

d.

Individuals whose characteristics are best suited to the environment generally leave more offspring than those whose characteristics are less suited.

e.

Only a fraction of the offspring produced by an individual may survive.

____ 15. Which of the following observations helped Darwin shape his concept of descent with modification?



a.

Species diversity declines farther from the equator.

b.

Fewer species live on islands than on the nearest continents.

c.

Birds can be found on islands located farther from the mainland than the birds' maximum nonstop flight distance.

d.

South American temperate plants are more similar to the tropical plants of South America than to the temperate plants of Europe.

e.

Earthquakes reshape life by causing mass extinctions.

____ 16. DNA sequences in many human genes are very similar to the sequences of corresponding genes in chimpanzees. The most likely explanation for this result is that



a.

humans and chimpanzees share a relatively recent common ancestor.

b.

humans evolved from chimpanzees.

c.

chimpanzees evolved from humans.

d.

convergent evolution led to the DNA similarities.

e.

humans and chimpanzees are not closely related.

____ 17. Which of the following pairs of structures is least likely to represent homology?



a.

The wings of a bat and the arms of a human

b.

The hemoglobin of a baboon and that of a gorilla

c.

The mitochondria of a plant and those of an animal

d.

The wings of a bird and those of an insect

e.

The brain of a cat and that of a dog

____ 18. Which definition of evolution would have been most foreign to Charles Darwin during his lifetime?



a.

change in gene frequency in gene pools

b.

descent with modification

c.

the gradual change of a population's heritable traits over generations

d.

populations becoming better adapted to their environments over the course of generations

e.

the appearance of new varieties and new species with the passage of time

____ 19. Which of these variables is likely to undergo the largest change in value as the result of a mutation that introduces a brand-new allele into a population's gene pool at a locus that had formerly been fixed?



a.

Average heterozygosity

b.

Nucleotide variability

c.

Geographic variability

d.

Average number of loci

____ 20. Each of the following has a better chance of influencing gene frequencies in small populations than in large populations, but which one most consistently requires a small population as a precondition for its occurrence?



a.

Mutation

b.

Non-random mating

c.

Genetic drift

d.

Natural selection

e.

Gene flow

____ 21. The higher the proportion of loci that are "fixed" in a population, the lower is that population's



a.

nucleotide variability.

b.

genetic polyploidy.

c.

average heterozygosity.

d.

A, B, and C

e.

A and C only

____ 22. Rank the following 1-base point mutations (from most likely to least likely) with respect to their likelihood of affecting the structure of the corresponding polypeptide:



1.

insertion mutation deep within an intron

2.

substitution mutation at the 3rd position of an exonic codon

3.

substitution mutation at the 2nd position of an exonic codon

4.

deletion mutation within the first exon of the gene




a.

1, 2, 3, 4

b.

4, 3, 2, 1

c.

2, 1, 4, 3

d.

3, 1, 4, 2

e.

2, 3, 1, 4



Use the following information to answer the questions below.
HIV's genome of RNA includes code for reverse transcriptase (RT), an enzyme that acts early in infection to synthesize a DNA genome off of an RNA template. The HIV genome also codes for protease (PR), an enzyme that acts later in infection by cutting long viral polyproteins into smaller, functional proteins. Both RT and PR represent potential targets for antiretroviral drugs. Drugs called nucleoside analogs (NA) act against RT, whereas drugs called protease inhibitors (PI) act against PR.
____ 23. Within the body of an HIV-infected individual who is being treated with a single NA, and whose HIV particles are currently vulnerable to this NA, which of these situations can increase the virus' relative fitness?

1. mutations resulting in RTs with decreased rates of nucleotide mismatch

2. mutations resulting in RTs with increased rates of nucleotide mismatch

3. mutations resulting in RTs that have proofreading capability



a.

1 only

b.

2 only

c.

3 only

d.

1 and 3

e.

2 and 3

____ 24. Which of these makes determining the evolutionary relatedness of different species based on the amino acid sequence of homologous proteins generally less accurate than determinations of relatedness based on the nucleotide sequences of homologous genes?



a.

Silent mutations

b.

Gene duplications

c.

Translocation events that change gene sequences

d.

Crossing-over

e.

Independent assortment



Use the following information to answer the questions below.
In a hypothetical population of 1,000 people, tests of blood-type genes show that 160 have the genotype AA, 480 have the genotype AB, and 360 have the genotype BB.
____ 25. In peas, a gene controls flower color such that R = purple and r = white. In an isolated pea patch, there are 36 purple-flowering plants and 64 white-flowering plants. Assuming Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, what is the value of q for this population?

a.

0.36

b.

0.60

c.

0.64

d.

0.75

e.

0.80



The following questions refer to this information:
In the year 2500, five male space colonists and five female space colonists (all unrelated to each other) settle on an uninhabited Earthlike planet in the Andromeda galaxy. The colonists and their offspring randomly mate for generations. All ten of the original colonists had free earlobes, and two were heterozygous for that trait. The allele for free earlobes is dominant to the allele for attached earlobes.
____ 26. Which of these is closest to the allele frequency in the founding population?

a.

0.1 a, 0.9 A

b.

0.2 a, 0.8 A

c.

0.5 a, 0.5 A

d.

0.8 a, 0.2 A

e.

0.4 a, 0.6 A

____ 27. If one assumes that Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium applies to the population of colonists on this planet, about how many people will have attached earlobes when the planet's population reaches 10,000?



a.

100

b.

400

c.

800

d.

1,000

e.

10,000



The following questions refer to this information:
You are studying three populations of birds. Population A has ten birds, of which one is brown (a recessive trait) and nine are red. Population B has 100 birds, of which ten are brown. Population C has 30 birds, and three of them are brown.
____ 28. In which population is the frequency of the allele for brown feathers highest?

a.

Population A.

b.

Population B.

c.

Population C.

d.

They are all the same.

e.

It is impossible to tell from the information given.

____ 29. In which population would it be least likely that an accident would significantly alter the frequency of the brown allele?



a.

Population A.

b.

Population B.

c.

Population C.

d.

They are all the same.

e.

It is impossible to tell from the information given.

____ 30. You are maintaining a small population of fruit flies in the laboratory by transferring the flies to a new culture bottle after each generation. After several generations, you notice that the viability of the flies has decreased greatly. Recognizing that small population size is likely to be linked to decreased viability, the best way to reverse this trend is to



a.

cross your flies with flies from another lab.

b.

reduce the number of flies that you transfer at each generation.

c.

transfer only the largest flies.

d.

change the temperature at which you rear the flies.

e.

shock the flies with a brief treatment of heat or cold to make them more hardy.

____ 31. If the frequency of a particular allele that is present in a small, isolated population of alpine plants decreases due to a landslide that leaves an even smaller remnant of surviving plants bearing this allele, then what has occurred?



a.

a bottleneck

b.

genetic drift

c.

microevolution

d.

A and B only

e.

A, B, and C

____ 32. If the original finches that had been blown over to the Galapagos from South America had already been genetically different from the parental population of South American finches, even before adapting to the Galapagos, this would have been an example of



a.

genetic drift.

b.

bottleneck effect.

c.

founder's effect.

d.

all three of these

e.

both A and C



The following questions refer to this information:
In the wild, male house finches (Carpodus mexicanus) vary considerably in the amount of red pigmentation in their head and throat feathers, with colors ranging from pale yellow to bright red. These colors come from carotenoid pigments that are found in the birds' diets; no vertebrates are known to synthesize carotenoid pigments. Thus, the brighter red the male's feathers are, the more successful he has been at acquiring the red carotenoid pigment by his food-gathering efforts (all other factors being equal).
____ 33. The situation as described in the paragraph above should select most directly against males that

a.

are unable to distinguish food items that are red from those of other colors.

b.

are older, but still healthy.

c.

are capable of defending only moderately sized territories.

d.

have slightly lower levels of testosterone during breeding season than have other males.

e.

have no prior experience courting female house finches.

____ 34. When we say that an individual organism has a greater fitness than another individual, we specifically mean that the organism



a.

lives longer than others of its species.

b.

competes for resources more successfully than others of its species.

c.

mates more frequently than others of its species.

d.

utilizes resources more efficiently than other species occupying similar niches.

e.

leaves more viable offspring than others of its species.

____ 35. Which of the following statements best summarizes evolution as it is viewed today?



a.

It is goal-directed.

b.

It represents the result of selection for acquired characteristics.

c.

It is synonymous with the process of gene flow.

d.

It is the descent of humans from the present-day great apes.

e.

It is the differential survival and reproduction of the most-fit phenotypes.

____ 36. Most Swiss starlings produce four to five eggs in each clutch. Those producing fewer or more than this have reduced fitness. Which of the following terms best describes this?



a.

artificial selection

b.

directional selection

c.

stabilizing selection

d.

disruptive selection

e.

sexual selection

____ 37. Fossil evidence indicates that horses have gradually increased in size over geologic time. Which of the following terms best describes this?



a.

artificial selection

b.

directional selection

c.

stabilizing selection

d.

disruptive selection

e.

sexual selection

____ 38. The average birth weight for human babies is about 3 kg. Which of the following terms best describes this?



a.

artificial selection

b.

directional selection

c.

stabilizing selection

d.

disruptive selection

e.

sexual selection

____ 39. Cattle breeders have improved the quality of meat over the years by which process?



a.

artificial selection

b.

directional selection

c.

stabilizing selection

d.

A and B

e.

A and C

____ 40. The recessive allele that causes phenylketonuria (PKU) is harmful, except when an infant's diet lacks the amino acid, phenylalanine. What maintains the presence of this harmful allele in a population's gene pool?



a.

heterozygote advantage

b.

stabilizing selection

c.

diploidy

d.

balancing selection

____ 41. In seedcracker finches from Cameroon, small- and large-billed birds specialize in cracking soft and hard seeds, respectively. If long-term climatic change resulted in all seeds becoming hard, what type of selection would then operate on the finch population?



a.

disruptive selection

b.

directional selection

c.

stabilizing selection

d.

sexual selection

e.

No selection would operate because the population is in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium.

____ 42. There are those who claim that the theory of evolution cannot be true because the apes, which are supposed to be closely related to humans, do not likewise share the same large brains, capacity for complicated speech, and tool-making capability. They reason that if these features are generally beneficial, then the apes should have evolved them as well. Which of these provides the best argument against this misconception?



a.

Advantageous alleles do not arise on demand.

b.

A population's evolution is limited by historical constraints.

c.

Adaptations are often compromises.

d.

Evolution can be influenced by environmental change.

____ 43. A fruit fly population has a gene with two alleles, A1 and A2. Tests show that 70% of the gametes produced in the population contain the A1 allele. If the population is in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, what proportion of the flies carry both A1 and A2?



a.

0.7

b.

0.49

c.

0.21

d.

0.42

e.

0.09

____ 44. No two people are genetically identical, except for identical twins. The chief cause of genetic variation among human individuals is



a.

new mutations that occurred in the preceding generation.

b.

the reshuffling of alleles in sexual reproduction.

c.

genetic drift due to the small size of the population.

d.

geographic variation within the population.

e.

environmental effects.

____ 45. Sparrows with average-sized wings survive severe storms better than those with longer or shorter wings, illustrating



a.

the bottleneck effect.

b.

stabilizing selection.

c.

frequency-dependent selection.

d.

neutral variation.

e.

disruptive selection.

____ 46. Which of the various species concepts distinguishes two species based on the degree of genetic exchange between their gene pools?



a.

phylogenetic

b.

ecological

c.

biological

d.

morphological

____ 47. There is still some controversy among biologists about whether Neanderthals should be placed within the same species as modern humans, or into a separate species of their own. Most DNA sequence data analyzed so far indicate that there was probably little or no gene flow between Neanderthals and Homo sapiens. Which species concept is most applicable in this example?



a.

phylogenetic

b.

ecological

c.

morphological

d.

biological



The questions below are based on the following description.
Several closely related frog species of the genus Rana are found in the forests of the southeastern United States. The species boundaries are maintained by reproductive barriers. In each case, match the various descriptions of frogs below with the appropriate reproductive barrier listed.
____ 48. Males of one species sing only when its predators are absent; males of another species sing only when its predators are present.

a.

behavioral

b.

gametic

c.

habitat

d.

temporal

e.

mechanical

____ 49. One species lives only in tree holes; another species lives only in streams.



a.

behavioral

b.

gametic

c.

habitat

d.

temporal

e.

mechanical

____ 50. Females of one species choose mates based on song quality; females of another species choose mates on the basis of size.



a.

behavioral

b.

gametic

c.

habitat

d.

temporal

e.

mechanical

____ 51. Theoretically, the production of sterile mules by interbreeding between female horses and male donkeys should



a.

result in the extinction of one of the two parental species.

b.

cause convergent evolution.

c.

strengthen postzygotic barriers between horses and donkeys.

d.

weaken the intrinsic reproductive barriers between horses and donkeys.

e.

eventually result in the formation of a single species from the two parental species.

____ 52. The biological species concept is inadequate for grouping



a.

plants.

b.

parasites.

c.

asexual organisms.

d.

animals that migrate.

e.

sympatric populations.

____ 53. Which example below will most likely guarantee that two closely related species will persist only as distinct biological species?



a.

colonization of new habitats

b.

convergent evolution

c.

hybridization

d.

geographic isolation from one another

e.

reproductive isolation from one another

____ 54. In a hypothetical situation, a certain species of flea feeds only on pronghorn antelopes. In rangelands of the western United States, pronghorns and cattle often associate with one another. If some of these fleas develop a strong preference, instead, for cattle blood and mate only with fleas that, likewise, prefer cattle blood, then over time which of these should occur, if the host mammal can be considered as the fleas' habitat?



1.

reproductive isolation

2.

sympatric speciation

3.

habitat isolation

4.

prezygotic barriers




a.

1 only

b.

2 and 3

c.

1, 2, and 3

d.

2, 3, and 4

e.

1 through 4

____ 55. Two closely related populations of mice have been separated for many generations by a river. Climatic change causes the river to dry up, thereby bringing the mice populations back into contact in a zone of overlap. Which of the following is not a possible outcome when they meet?



a.

They interbreed freely and produce fertile hybrid offspring.

b.

They no longer attempt to interbreed.

c.

They interbreed in the region of overlap, producing an inferior hybrid. Subsequent interbreeding between inferior hybrids produces progressively superior hybrids over several generations.

d.

They remain separate in the extremes of their ranges but develop a persistent hybrid zone in the area of overlap.

e.

They interbreed in the region of overlap, but produce sterile offspring.

____ 56. The difference between geographic isolation and habitat differentiation is the



a.

relative locations of two populations as speciation occurs.

b.

speed (tempo) at which two populations undergo speciation.

c.

amount of genetic variation that occurs among two gene pools as speciation occurs.

d.

identity of the phylogenetic kingdom or domain in which these phenomena occur.

e.

the ploidy of the two populations as speciation occurs.

____ 57. Among known plant species, which of these have been the two most commonly occurring phenomena leading to the origin of new species?

1. allopatric speciation

2. sympatric speciation

3. sexual selection

4. polyploidy



a.

1 and 3

b.

1 and 4

c.

2 and 3

d.

2 and 4

____ 58. The phenomenon of fusion is likely to occur when, after a period of geographic isolation, two populations meet again and



a.

their chromosomes are no longer homologous enough to permit meiosis.

b.

a constant number of viable, fertile hybrids is produced over the course of generations.

c.

the hybrid zone is inhospitable to hybrid survival.

d.

an increasing number of viable, fertile hybrids is produced over the course of generations

e.

a decreasing number of viable, fertile hybrids is produced over the course of generations.

____ 59. The constantly changing nature of the Appalachian ground crickets (Allonemobius fasciatus and Allonemobius socius) hybrid zone favors



a.

no gene flow between the two gene pools.

b.

little gene flow between the two gene pools.

c.

increased levels of gene flow between the two gene pools.

d.

extinction of both species as the hybrids persist.

____ 60. The most likely explanation for the recent decline in cichlid species diversity in Lake Victoria is



a.

reinforcement.

b.

fusion.

c.

stability.

d.

geographic isolation.

e.

polyploidy.

____ 61. In the narrow hybrid zone that separates the toad species Bombina bombina and Bombina variegata, what is true of those alleles that are unique to the parental species?



a.

Such alleles should be absent.

b.

Their allele frequency should be nearly the same as the allele frequencies in toad populations distant from the hybrid zone.

c.

The alleles' heterozygosity should be higher among the hybrid toads there.

d.

Their allele frequency on one edge of the hybrid zone should roughly equal their frequency on the opposite edge of the hybrid zone.



The following questions refer to the description below.
On the volcanic, equatorial West African island of Sao Tomé, two species of fruit fly exist. Drosophila yakuba inhabits the island's lowlands, and is also found on the African mainland, located about 200 miles away. At higher elevations, and found only on Sao Tomé, is found the very closely related Drosophila santomea. The two species can hybridize, though male hybrids are sterile. A hybrid zone exists at middle elevations, though hybrids there are greatly outnumbered by D. santomea. Studies of the two species' nuclear genomes reveal that D. yakuba on the island is more closely related to mainland D. yakuba than to D. santomea (2n=4 in both species). Sao Tomé rose from the Atlantic Ocean about 14 million years ago.
____ 62. Using only the information provided in the paragraph, which of these is the best initial hypothesis for how D. santomea descended from D. yakuba?

a.

geographic isolation

b.

autopolyploidy

c.

habitat differentiation

d.

sexual selection

e.

allopolyploidy

____ 63. Which of these evolutionary trees represents the situation described in the paragraph above (NOTE: yakuba (I) represents the island population, and yakuba (M) represents the mainland population)?



a.




b.




c.




d.




____ 64. Which of the following statements about speciation is correct?



a.

The goal of natural selection is speciation.

b.

When reunited, two allopatric populations will not interbreed.

c.

Natural selection chooses the reproductive barriers for populations.

d.

Prezygotic reproductive barriers usually evolve before postzygotic barriers.

e.

Speciation is a basis for understanding macroevolution.

____ 65. Upon undergoing change, which of these genes is most likely to result in speciation while a geographic barrier separates two populations of a flowering-plant species?



a.

one that affects the rate of chlorophyll a synthesis

b.

one that affects the amount of growth hormone synthesized per unit time

c.

one that affects the compatibility of male pollen and female reproductive parts

d.

one that affects the average depth to which roots grow down through the soil

e.

one that affects how flexible the stems are

____ 66. In order for speciation to occur, what is true?



a.

The number of chromosomes in the genome must change.

b.

Changes to centromere location or chromosome size must occur within the genome.

c.

Large numbers of genes that affect a single phenotypic trait must change.

d.

Large numbers of genes that affect numerous phenotypic traits must change.

e.

At least one gene, affecting at least one phenotypic trait, must change.



The following questions refer to the evolutionary tree below, whose horizontal axis represents time (present time is on the far right) and whose vertical axis represents morphological change.
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