The idea of natural selection is nowadays commonly accepted throughout the entire science world and beyond, and the essay titled “Natural Selection” by Charles Darwin in the McGraw-Hill Reader book very factually states all that it is. This essay is an extract of Charles Darwin’s book “The Origins of Species”, which clearly illustrates the actions of natural selection and of survival of the fittest, which is basically the theory that the stronger an organism, and if it is able to adapt to a change in their environment, the more chance it has to survive. Organisms that are weak and can’t adapt to changes, most likely will die. As Michael E.N. Majerus explains in his essay “Industrial Melanism”, natural selection doesn’t necessarily have to take a millennia to occur, and can be easily seen in the moths of Western Europe. In addition, in the article “Natural Selection: How Evolution Works” written by Douglas Futuyma, it plainly describes how natural selection has been at work in the recent past, as well as how some industries, especially the agricultural industry, have been affected by constantly evolving insects, which have been evolving rapidly to many pesticides the agriculture industry uses to mass produce the amount of food needed necessary to meet the demands of the world’s growing population. Now that an overview has been done, let’s look further into industrial melanism.
Majerus’ essay titled “Industrial Melanism”, gives further factual and convincing evidence of how this type of melanism, melanism being a proportional increase of dark pigments (melanin) in individuals of a population, caused by changes in the environment resulting from industrial pollution, has given certain organisms an advantage over others. He goes to explain that in Britain, the ancestral form of peppered moths were white, liberally speckled with dark brown or black scales. Then in 1848, a largely black form peppered moths, was recorded in Manchester, England. In a... [continues]
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