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Year 8

Natural selection occurs naturally in the environment.

Bellow are the 4 key points

Natural selection

Individuals in a species show a range of variation

This variation is because of differences in genes.

Individuals with characteristics most suited to the environment are more likely to survive and reproduce.

The genes that allowed the individuals to be successful are passed to the offspring in the next generation

Individuals that are poorly adapted to the environment are likely to die and not reproduce. Meaning their genes are less likely to be passed to the next generation. Over time the species will gradually change to be suited to the environment.

Have you ever seen a carrot. Its orange, but it didn’t always start out this way.

In the 17th century almost all carrots were purple. It wasn’t until the 16th century where Dutch farmers took a mutant strain of an orangey carrot and continued to bread it.

Eventually the sweeter orange carrot was specifically bread and became main stream.

This selective breeding of traits is essentially natural selection, but instead of us choosing traits, nature and the environment chooses.


1. Define the term natural selection

2. Research an extinct animal

A)Explain why it is now extinct

B)What was the diet of this animal

C)What were the adaptation of this animal to

             i) Fight

             ii) Compete for food

             iii) eat its food

3. List 3 ways natural selection may occur

4. Why is it important for an animal to adapt to its environment

5. Why is variation in a population important

6. Explain the term Bio-accumulation, and why high order consumers are at risk