Biological species concept

Biological species concept

Paper instructions:
The most common definition of species is a biological definition based on the biological species concept and describes a species as a set of populations that can, under natural conditions, mate with one another to produce living, fertile offspring. This is fine for distantly related organisms like a dog and a dolphin, but what about a dog and a wolf? A domestic dog (Canis familiaris) and a wolf (Canis lupus) can mate and will do so if the conditions arise.

 

Essay 1:

Explain why is it not surprising that some species can interbreed with one another. Then define paleospecies. Would we see the dog and the wolf as distinct paleospecies? Explain the implications of your answer.

 

Essay 2:

Consider the two approaches to classifying and interpreting lifeforms: evolutionary systematics and cladistics. Define each and then select a classmate’s explanation as to why two distinct species can interbreed (Essay 1) and decide which if either or both is best suited to take into account such a relationship. Explain your answer.
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