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Students investigate the process of adaptation by natural selection by manipulating various parameters of a bird species, such as initial mean beak size, variability, heritability, and population size, and various parameters of the environment such as precipitation and island size. This lab can be used to investigate evolutionary principles such as directional, disruptive and balancing selection, the dependence of natural selection on the variability and heritability of a trait, founder effects, genetic drift, and extinction.

Discipline: evolution, ecology
Topic: evolution by natural selection
Product: Biology Labs On-Line
Vendor: Pearson Higher Education
Technical requirements: Java
Accessibility info: Pearson Accessibility Statement
Link to Lab: EvolutionLab
Reviews: Peer review in MERLOT (4.5/5 stars)
MERLOT Resources: peer review, learning exercises, personal collections
Instructional materials: instructor and lab manuals available online from vendor
Description: Series of interactive, inquiry-based simulations and exercises designed for college level biology students.
Case studies: Manchester Community College