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CAtaclysmic evolution! project help

  1. Jan 15, 2007 #1
    CAtaclysmic evolution! project ..help!!

    i have to do a project where an asteroid hit earth 500 million years ago. My project is onthe camel and how it would adapt to these feature. I got most of it but there is one part that i need a little help on.
    The Earth oxygen is decreased from the curren 19% to 3%.
    I dont know if im on the right track or not..but wouldnt tha mean that there is more water in the air..so the air is a lot denser. Because there is very little water left on the planet. I was thinking that i can give my camel gills that can take water out of the oxygen. Now i dont know if that is possible or not and if it is how it would work?? could someone please help me get on the right track and know what im doing a little bit for this part!...
    Help would be GREATLY appreciated!


    (I jus read about this homework thread after i submittedthis same question in the other thread:redface: )
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 15, 2007 #2

    Moonbear

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    Since the scenario you have to work with is a fictional one, I don't know how much leeway you have with making assumptions on things like humidity (amount of water in the air), or if you need to stick to only the given information (i.e., decreased oxygen).

    However, if you give the camel gills, is that consistent with evolutionary theory? Keep in mind that changes in the environment can only act upon existing traits, and new traits cannot just appear out of thin air to help an organism adapt.

    To help you get on the right track, some things you might want to think about are examples from the real world where oxygen levels are decreased in the atmosphere. Can you think of a place where this happens naturally? How do people or other animals adapt to those places 1) when they first arrive there and 2) after many generations of living there? This might give you some ideas on what your camels may or may not be able to do.

    If you can't think of a place where this happens naturally on your own, I'll come back and help you with that so you have it as a starting place for research into your question.
     
  4. Jan 16, 2007 #3
    Well i really couldnt think of some place where the oxygen level is low....but im not too good with things like this... I understand how u are saying tht i cant make my camel have gills that jus pop up. Is there any way that the lungs could gain some tubules that could seperate the oxygen and water.
    thnx for the help.. If u probable didnt reply i wouldve probably ended up sticking some lungs on my camel and gettin a couple points docked
     
  5. Jan 16, 2007 #4

    Moonbear

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    What about high altitudes? Why is it that some people can survive climbing Mt. Everest when most of us require pressurized cabins on planes to survive that altitude? If you look up information on that, it might help you along.

    Is there a natural variation in camels that would allow selection for something like this?

    What about other options? Right now, it seems all your thinking is about respiratory systems...getting the oxygen into the organism (gills, lungs, etc.) What would be important for retaining oxygen in the body or using that oxygen more effectively?

    That's what we're here for. We still leave you to do the hard part of coming up with your own answers, but can help steer you away from wrong answers. :smile:
     
  6. Jan 17, 2007 #5
    okay.... so i looked into what they do for the airplanes the jus move the air around..i think....or thats what i got atleast.....i looked up what people do when they climb mount everest and they take bottled oxygen....i dont think i can put a bag of bottled oxygen on my camel..and isnt the oxygen that i need the camel to recieve its more that the camel need to some how bring the water out of the air...or that it can seperate the 2 inside of its body..so taht way it wont also be wasting energy looking for water when it is supplied with the oxygen........the only way that i could think of this was to put gills of some sort since they brin oxygen in...there might be a way that i can alter them a little bit so that the gills can bring water in...(if that makes any sense)...
     
  7. Jan 17, 2007 #6

    Moonbear

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    Returning to the original issue, where do the camels get gills from? Also, how do gills work? Are they really suited for low oxygen environments, or air?

    Okay, since you're having trouble finding the information on your own, here's a National Geographic story that should help.
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/02/0224_040225_evolution.html

    And another article on mountain sickness that talks about adaptation.
    http://www.mountaineering.ie/features/general/highaltitude.htm

    You can find more information on your own if you search for high altitude adaptation.
     
  8. Jan 17, 2007 #7
    OMG...thankyou so much...i didnt quiet understand what to look up and all i could fin was bottled oxygen!..hahah...lol....well i went to the links and i think i might be on the right track now...so if camels aready can store water for a periods of time there really is not point of chainging the lungs.l..i could jus change the place where red blood cells are made(cant think of the name at the moment) and make the heart beat faster bringing in more oxygen!...haha man i love when i feel smart./..and by showing thoses links...and what i should search u really made me feel intelligent..(hopfulle im on the right track!) THANX AGAIN A MILLION!!
     
  9. Jan 18, 2007 #8

    Moonbear

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    I think you're finally on the right track. :smile:
     
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