Darwin’s Voyage

Despite the disruption of multiple fires started by students in the restrooms, we managed to take class notes on the four key facets of evolution studied thus far (pictured below).  A few classes were able to begin the activity below the picture.

A part of Darwin’s journey to developing the idea of evolution was in the Galapagos Islands.  You will start by taking a tour of where he went and what he observed.  Go to Explore the Galapagos on the PBS NOVA website and go through the interactive tour.  Answer the following questions in full sentences below in your lab notebook and turn in for credit:

  1. Where are the Galapagos Islands?
  2. First click on “Explore the Islands” and read about three of the islands.  Summarize one observation for each of the three islands you read about.
  3. Look at “Darwin’s Finches”.  What do you think it means by unique niche, based on what the rest of the paragraph says?
  4. How are the beaks different and why was that important?
  5. Now click on “What Darwin Saw”.  You will be going through his various stages and reading about what Darwin said (if you have headphones you can listen to the interviews as well).  Summarize Darwin’s first impressions (just writing the opening sentence will get you zero credit, click for the full story).
  6. What surprised Darwin on the islands?
  7. What did the tortoises offer the local people?  How did it benefit Darwin?
  8. At first Darwin thought the birds were unrelated, but what ideas eventually came from his observations of the finches?
  9. What was the fallout (or result) of Darwin’s journey?
  10. Go back to the “Explore the Islands”.  Look at some of the interpretative panoramics and the animals.  Pick one (or two for a bonus point) animals and summarize their unique characteristics.
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