Student Notes: Animal Traits and Behaviors that Enhance Survival What is a trait?
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Why do predator animals live in herds, packs, or social groups Hunting and reproducing Why do prey animals live in them
What is an evolutionary adaptation Change that occurs over a long period of time Types of Adaptations
Adaptation vs. Mutation: What is a Mutation
What is selective breeding The process of breeding plants and animals for particular traits Example
_______________________ Date _________ Period ________
Animal Traits and Behaviors
that Enhance Survival
What is a
A characteristic of some organism like how it looks or acts (can be inherited or learned.)
What is an
A trait that is passed down from parent to offspring (hair color, eye color, etc.)
Give an example of a learned behavior and an instinct for one of the animals in the pictures.
Elephants instinctively will search for water and follow the older elephants, but learn
List 3 advantages to living in herds and packs:
Mates in the pack or herd
List 1 reason
that an animal would live a
Not enough resources (food, shelter, etc.)
Why do predator animals live in herds, packs, or social groups?
Hunting and reproducing
Why do prey animals live in them?
What is natural selection?
The gradual process in which the better adapted individuals will survive and reproduce—passing on those better traits
What is an evolutionary adaptation?
Change that occurs over a long period of time
Structural (how it looks)
behavioral (how it acts )
physiological (how it works
Describe and give an example of each type of adaptation:
involves some part of an animal’s body
teeth, body coverings, hollow bones, webbed feet
also known as
Using coloration to hide against
a background of the same color
polar bear in snow, brown bunny in woods
breaks up the shape and destroys the outline of an object hindering detection
with stripes in tall grass
, leopard spots
top and bottom are different colors to blend in different environments
frog (brown on top and light on bottom) or sharks/whales, etc.
allows one animal to look, sound, or act like another
and king snake
, monarch and viceroy butterfly, moth with spots like eyes
Activities that help an animal survive (can be learned or instinctive)
opossum playing dead,
wolves in packs
, birds migrating
An animal or group of animals moves from one region to another and then back again
birds flying south for the winter
Deep sleep in which an animal’s body temperature drops,
body activities are slowed to
: bears, bats, etc.
same as hibernation but for hot, dry
snakes, lizards, etc. in a desert
Adaptation vs. Mutation:
What is a Mutation?
A change in the DNA sequence/gene creating a new or different genetic trait
How can a mutation become an adaptation?
If the mutation (change) allows for the organism
to survive and reproduce
, it may become a new trait and may create a new species with those successful traits
What is selective breeding?
The process of breeding plants and animals for particular traits
horses for speed, cows or chickens that grow faster, plants that
yield more or bigger crops
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