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 Adam Tyson
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#83695
You shouldn't have to make any assumptions, Tajadas, but should just rely on what the answers give you. The answer here doesn't have to completely solve the problem for us, but only has to help solve it.

Answer E gives us no help, because it tells us nothing about why a species with poor camouflage and no other special protection has managed to survive predation. So what if their camo is not as big a problem at night? Why aren't they being preyed on? I do also think it's a big stretch to interpret that answer as "maybe it is not a liability at night at all," and we shouldn't be making strained interpretations of plain language. That gets us into the realm of rationalizing bad answers and talking ourselves out of good ones. If one thing is not as bad as another, and the first thing is pretty bad, the second thing is probably still not very good.

But answer C needs no help and no special interpretations. If predators see differently than we do, then perhaps what seems to us humans to be unlikely to provide good camouflage might actually be great for dealing with that animal's particular predators. We don't have to know what the difference is, and it isn't about being better or worse. It's just that some predators see things differently than we do, so our perception of the effectiveness of that camouflage may not be applicable. Our evidence for the claim that it "seems unlikely to provide effective camouflage" becomes weak. Answer C is, at its core, "we could be wrong." That's enough to contribute to a resolution, even if it doesn't fully resolve the paradox.
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 cornflakes
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#87463
How can we conclusively say that the population of the prey species is an "adaption to counteract predation?" I can see the point now that Brook was making about the stimulus limiting our ability to consider other adaptations - I am less certain in how the statement about relative population sizes between prey and predator constitutes a clear adaption to counteract predation.

Could you please explain why this statement clearly constitutes, or is more likely than not to constitute, an adaptation to counteract predation?

Thanks.
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 cornflakes
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#87464
Furthermore - even if we were to call this an adaption to counteract predation - couldn't it be one of the "few" others besides camo that the species is permitted to make under the laws of the stimulus?

"prey species with few or no other adaptations" - few means at least one, maybe more - this seems to be only one adaptation.
 Robert Carroll
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#88042
corn,

Brook's point was that answer choice (A) is wrong either way. If population size is an adaptation to avoid predation, it's certainly not camouflage, so it doesn't resolve the paradox because then the correlation between relative population size and coloration would be a coincidence. A coincidence won't explain anything. If population size is not an adaptation, then, again, we're left with no explanation of how the black-and-white species avoid predators.

Robert Carroll
 flexbubbleboi
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#89121
I got hung up on answer A for the same reason as a poster above did -- because I thought it was too much of a leap to assume that, when the passage said "seems unlikely," we were supposed to assume that meant "seems unlikely from the perspective of how human vision works." That seemed, in fact, like it would be a weirdly amateurish implication for the passage to be suggesting: it sounds like we're reading someone who knows a thing or two about animals, so why would they suddenly shift to such an uninformed-sounding way of using "seems" -- shouldn't it be obvious that we'd be looking for what "seems" likely to work on the relevant predator animals?

So I thought about A, and figured that if species with black-and-white coloration are more populous than the species that prey upon them, that could be part of what helps them survive: maybe they just reproduce at a super high rate. And maybe the gene that gives them their coloration is also linked to a set of traits that causes a high reproduction rate. (I noticed an above poster mentioned that the passage said that these prey species have "no other adaptations," but it actually says "few or no other adaptations," which leaves room for a case like this).

I understand that I'm making too many leaps in my reasoning for choosing A, but C seemed so obviously flawed (in its strange assumption about what "seems" implied in the stimulus), and I didn't know which answer was "worse" in terms of making unwarranted assumptions.

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