Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a

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Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a [#permalink]

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06 May 2005, 14:03
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Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a powerful natural insecticide. The insecticide occurs throughout the plant, including its pollen. Maize pollen is dispersed by the wind and frequently blows onto milkweed plants that grow near maize fields. Caterpillars of monarch butterflies feed exclusively on milkweed leaves. When these caterpillars are fed milkweed leaves dusted with pollen from modified maize plants, they die. Therefore, by using genetically modified maize, farmers put monarch butterflies at risk.

Which of the following would it be most useful to determine in order to evaluate the argument?

A. Whether the natural insecticide is as effective against maize-eating insects as commercial insecticides typically used on maize are
B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as other parts of these plants
C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the growing season when maize is releasing pollen
D. Whether insects that feed on genetically modified maize plants are likely to be killed by insecticide from the plantâ€™s pollen
E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields
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07 May 2005, 21:35
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B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as other parts of these plants
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07 May 2005, 23:54
C.

The arguement is that by using genetically modified maize, farmers put monarch butterflies at
risk.

The caterpillars die if they eat the pollen at all. They must eat it when the pollen spreads.
Since the question says that the caterpillars die when they eat the leaves in which the pollen is present. B is out.
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08 May 2005, 06:14
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"E"

Whether the natural insecticide is as effective against maize-eating insects as
commercial insecticides typically used on maize are

Outta scope.

B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as
other parts of these plants

Does not matter. The reason is presence of insectiside and not really amount. INcorrect.

C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the
growing season when maize is releasing pollen

We already know that butterflies are eating the weed with pollen. Even if they are not actively feeding and still dying , does not help.

D. Whether insects that feed on genetically modified maize plants are likely to be
killed by insecticide from the plantâ€™s pollen

Even if we know this, it does not address buttefflies issue.

E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the
leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields

If this is true then insecticide may not be the cause.
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08 May 2005, 06:41
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ttar wrote:
Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a powerful natural insecticide. The
insecticide occurs throughout the plant, including its pollen. Maize pollen is dispersed by
the wind and frequently blows onto milkweed plants that grow near maize fields.
Caterpillars of monarch butterflies feed exclusively on milkweed leaves. When these
caterpillars are fed milkweed leaves dusted with pollen from modified maize plants, they
die. Therefore, by using genetically modified maize, farmers put monarch butterflies at
risk.
Which of the following would it be most useful to determine in order to evaluate the
argument?
A. Whether the natural insecticide is as effective against maize-eating insects as
commercial insecticides typically used on maize are
B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as
other parts of these plants
C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the
growing season when maize is releasing pollen
D. Whether insects that feed on genetically modified maize plants are likely to be
killed by insecticide from the plantâ€™s pollen
E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the
leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields

go for C.

A. Whether the natural insecticide is as effective against maize-eating insects as commercial insecticides typically used on maize are

not important
B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as other parts of these plants
not important

C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the growing season when maize is releasing pollen
if they eat, they die, or if they don't eat, they will not die.

D. Whether insects that feed on genetically modified maize plants are likely to be
killed by insecticide from the plantâ€™s pollen
we are talking about catepillar rather than insects.

E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the
leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields

not important
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08 May 2005, 07:57
ttar wrote:
Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a powerful natural insecticide. The
insecticide occurs throughout the plant, including its pollen. Maize pollen is dispersed by
the wind and frequently blows onto milkweed plants that grow near maize fields.
Caterpillars of monarch butterflies feed exclusively on milkweed leaves. When these
caterpillars are fed milkweed leaves dusted with pollen from modified maize plants, they
die. Therefore, by using genetically modified maize, farmers put monarch butterflies at
risk.
Which of the following would it be most useful to determine in order to evaluate the
argument?
A. Whether the natural insecticide is as effective against maize-eating insects as
commercial insecticides typically used on maize are
B. Whether the pollen of genetically modified maize contains as much insecticide as
other parts of these plants
C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the
growing season when maize is releasing pollen
D. Whether insects that feed on genetically modified maize plants are likely to be
killed by insecticide from the plantâ€™s pollen
E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the
leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields

Question Type: Evaluate an argument.
Conclusion: Genetically modified maize present danger to butterflies.
My AC is C.

A: Boot out. Argument stem doesnt discuss about "maize-eating insects" and commerical Vs natural insecticide. Out of Scope.
B: Boot out. The argument stem isnt concerned with which part of hte maize plant produces most or least insectiticide.
C: Good Point. Are the catterpillar feeding during the time pollen is released? Keep AC.
D: Boot out. Out of Scope? Insects? We are talking of the sequence of events between maize plants and catterpillar.
E: Boot out. Out of Scope. Why does it matter if there is competition or not.
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10 May 2005, 09:02
Between E & C .

E looks very generic (about insects & not specific to caterpillar). Hence eliminate. I shall go with C

OA ?
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10 May 2005, 18:19
I'll go with C. If the monach butterfly caterpillars feed at other parts of the season when pollen is not released from the maize plant, then they would not get milkweed leaves laced with natural insecticide, and thus would not die.
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11 May 2005, 08:45

If someone else knows the OA please post.
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11 May 2005, 09:09
yaa, C.

because the stem already states that insecticide contained in pollen can kill butterfly caterpillars, so B is irrelevant.
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11 May 2005, 09:34
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another one for c.

caterpillars eat===>>>die
caterpillars dont eat===>>happily live

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11 May 2005, 13:19
Another 'C'

for the same reason as Doloris gave
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14 May 2005, 10:48
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16 May 2005, 12:58
C.
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16 May 2005, 19:05
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17 May 2005, 01:27
C
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16 Jul 2013, 22:11
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C Correct.
1.monarch butterflies are actually at risk only when they eat milkweed leaves dusted with pollen.
2.so when pollen is not present on milkweed leaves,monarch butterflies safely eat them.
3.so if monarch butterflies are not actively eating milkweed leaves during maize growing season monarch butterflies will be not at risk.

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19 Apr 2014, 14:08
Wouldn't using the "variance test" from Powerscore CR Bible on E mean - Yes the insects compete and use up all the pollen first, therefore the caterpillars don't die. Conversely, No, they don't compete and don't use the pollen therefore the caterpillars will use and die.
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07 Jan 2015, 05:18

" Caterpillars of monarch butterflies feed EXCLUSIVELY on milkweed leaves "

Which could mean that caterpillar's feed is LIMITED TO MILKWEED LEAVES.

If caterpillars have to LIVE, obviously they have to eat ONLY MILKWEED LEAVES all day all season, since caterpillar's feed is LIMITED TO MILKWEED .

How Option C is right ?

Also please explain in option C , How "actively feeding" is different from "feeding" in the context.

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07 Jan 2015, 21:35
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My 2 cents. Though E and C both sound a valid contender, there are couple of reasons to prefer C over E.

Premise:
Certain genetically modified strains of maize produce a powerful natural insecticide.
The insecticide occurs throughout the plant, including its pollen. Maize pollen is dispersed by the wind and frequently blows onto milkweed plants that grow near maize fields.
Caterpillars of monarch butterflies feed exclusively on milkweed leaves. When these caterpillars are fed milkweed leaves dusted with pollen from modified maize plants, they die.

Conclusion:
Therefore, by using genetically modified maize, farmers put monarch butterflies at risk.

Which of the following would it be most useful to determine in order to evaluate the argument?

E. Whether any maize-eating insects compete with monarch caterpillars for the leaves of milkweed plants growing near maize fields
>>There can be multiple possibilities here. It may be that insects compete with MC for leaves when maze r not in pollen phase,, a very small proportion of insects competes with MC Or, insects and MC eats different part of leaves. etc.
If any of these options are true then we can't confidently evaluate the argument. Also C mentions pollen and MC feeding period, a link that is mentioned in premise and a crucial factor to evaluate the argument.

C. Whether monarch butterfly caterpillars are actively feeding during the part of the growing season when maize is releasing pollen.
Yes: Yes it supports the conclusion.
No: Then it weaken the conclusion.

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