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Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust

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Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2011, 04:19
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Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Australia has wandered over the face of the planet for billions of years, sometimes lying in the northern hemisphere, sometimes in the south. For 40 million years, after finally cutting the umbilicus with Antarctica, it slowly drifted northwards, in isolation, at about half the rate at which a human hair
grows.

Now that the sheep has faltered, Australians ride more and more upon the marsupial‘s back. To a large extent, but more difficult to quantify, Australia‘s fauna and flora are being used as a unique resource. In scientific disciplines from reproductive physiology and evolutionary biology to medicine, Australia‘s native species are hailed as a unique and priceless heritage. They are providing insights into the way the world, and humans themselves, work.

Australia‘s rainforests—those ―unimportant appendages—are now widely acknowledged as being the most ancient of humanity‘s landbased ecosystems, which gave rise to most others. Botanical discoveries of worldwide importance are being made in them every year. Australian botanists have recently completed a catalog of Australian plants, in which they list 18,000 species. Their taxonomic work over recent years has resulted in a 50 percent increase in the number of species in the groups examined. Yet they estimate that about 7,000 undiscovered plant species still exist in Australia. Many surely inhabit Australian rainforests and are members of ancient and bizarre families, like the southern pine (Podocarpus species) recently found growing in a steep valley in Arnhem Land, thousands of kilometers distant from its nearest relatives.

Research on newly discovered Australian dinosaur faunas is challenging previous conceptions of what dinosaurs were like. So important are these discoveries that an Australian dinosaur recently made it onto the cover of a major international magazine. It was discovered in one of only two deposits in the world which was laid down near the South Pole during the age of dinosaurs. The chicken-sized species survived three months of darkness each year in a refrigerated world.

Scientists are finally understanding that evolution in Australia, in contrast to evolution on some other continents, is not driven solely by nature ―red in tooth and claw.‖ Here, a more gentle force—that of co adaptation—is important. This is because harsh conditions force individuals to cooperate to minimize the loss of nutrients, and to keep them cycling through the ecosystem as rapidly as possible.
1. Based on information in the passage, which of the following is NOT true?
A. Australia has moved from one hemisphere to the other over time.

B. Most Australian plant species remain undiscovered.
C. Important information is being gathered by studying Australian plants.
D. Australian rainforests are different from other rainforests.
E. Dinosaurs had once existed in what is now Australia
[Reveal] Spoiler:
B


2. Suppose that a previously unknown species of plant that is capable of producing medicine is found in an Australian rainforest. How would this information affect the author‘s opinion of Australian rainforests?
A. It would support the author‘s opinion.
B. It would contradict the author‘s opinion.
C. It would neither support nor contradict the author‘s opinion.
D. It would contradict the author‘s opinion only if this species of plant cannot be found anywhere else.
E. It would weaken the argument that Australian ecosystem is unique
[Reveal] Spoiler:
A


3. According to the passage, all of the following are considered benefits of studying Australian ecosystems EXCEPT:
A. increasing knowledge of reproductive physiology and medicine.
B. gaining information concerning evolutionary trends.
C. furthering the understanding of the uses of hydroelectric power and solar energy.
D. providing insight into ancient ecosystems
E. providing an insight into the way humans work
[Reveal] Spoiler:
C


4. What is the main purpose of the author in writing the passage?
A. to state that dinosaurs originated in what is now Australia
B. to criticise modern scientists for not understanding the unique importance of Australia
C. to discuss some unique ecological features of Australia
D. to assert that Australian rainforests are the oldest of them all
E. Australian flora and fauna are not found anywhere else in the world
[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2011, 12:43
1. Based on information in the passage, which of the following is NOT true?

A. Australia has moved from one hemisphere to the other over time.- stated in para 1.
B. Most Australian plant species remain undiscovered.- stated in para 3.
C. Important information is being gathered by studying Australian plants.- stated in para 3 (worldwide importance).
D. Australian rainforests are different from other rainforests. The correct answer. Rainforests are mentioned in para 4, but no where it is said that Australian rainforests are different form other ones.
E. Dinosaurs had once existed in what is now Australia- stated in para 4.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2011, 12:52
2. Suppose that a previously unknown species of plant that is capable of
producing medicine is found in an Australian rainforest. How would this
information affect the author‘s opinion of Australian rainforests?

A. It would support the author‘s opinion.
B. It would contradict the author‘s opinion.
C. It would neither support nor contradict the author‘s opinion.
D. It would contradict the author‘s opinion only if this species of plant
cannot be found anywhere else.
E. It would weaken the argument that Australian ecosystem is unique

IMO A.
In the authors opinion the Australian rainforests are the base of many important findings, have in them many different species of plants - amny of them are not yet discovered. In general the author is telling us that the Australian rainforests are important.
In the question it is stated that a new species of plant os found, and from this plant a new medicine could be made from it. This statement will only strengthen the author's opinion.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2011, 13:00
3. According to the passage, all of the following are considered benefits of
studying Australian ecosystems EXCEPT:

A. increasing knowledge of reproductive physiology and medicine. - The correct answer, never mentioned in the text.
B. gaining information concerning evolutionary trends.- stated in para 5.
C. furthering the understanding of the uses of hydroelectric power and
solar energy. stated in para 2.
D. providing insight into ancient ecosystems - para 3.
E. providing an insight into the way humans work- stated in para 2.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2011, 13:07
4. What is the main purpose of the author in writing the passage?

A. to state that dinosaurs originated in what is now Australia
B. to criticise modern scientists for not understanding the unique importance
of Australia
C. to discuss some unique ecological features of Australia
D. to assert that Australian rainforests are the oldest of them all
E. Australian flora and fauna are not found anywhere else in the world

IMO C. In the first paragraph the author states tells us general information about Australia, in the last one the author states that scientists are finally understanding some facts about Australia (this understanding is supported in the middle 3 paragraphs). The point of this passage is the uniqueness of Australia. This point is supported only by answer C.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2011, 08:13
Here are the OAs

1. B
2. A
3. C
4. C

@Nov79
Good reasoning,but you got the first and the third one wrong.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2011, 20:18
Hey I posted the same passage here after you, sorry about that.

I have doubts about qn 1 here. I felt that A is a valid answer for this.

Choice A mentions that Australia has moved from one hemisphere to another. Now this is not mentioned in the passage. The passage says "after finally cutting the umbilicus with Antarctica, it slowly drifted
northwards". So the passage only says Australia moved north not that it moved from one hemisphere to another.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 25 Feb 2011, 07:39
gmatgunner wrote:
Here are the OAs

1. B
2. A
3. C
4. C

@Nov79
Good reasoning,but you got the first and the third one wrong.



@gmatgunner :
Can you provide the Explanations for the OAs?

I am not convinced with the OA of 1st and 3rd Question.
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Re: R99 Passage 8 [#permalink] New post 03 Mar 2011, 07:21
nikhilsrl wrote:
Hey I posted the same passage here after you, sorry about that.

I have doubts about qn 1 here. I felt that A is a valid answer for this.

Choice A mentions that Australia has moved from one hemisphere to another. Now this is not mentioned in the passage. The passage says "after finally cutting the umbilicus with Antarctica, it slowly drifted
northwards". So the passage only says Australia moved north not that it moved from one hemisphere to another.


i think u missed the first line "Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Australia has
wandered over the face of the planet for billions of years, sometimes
lying in the northern hemisphere, sometimes in the south."

the answer is B because passage mentions "botanists have recently completed a catalog of Australian plants, in
which they list 18,000 species. Their taxonomic work over recent years
has resulted in a 50 percent increase in the number of species in the
groups examined. Yet they estimate that about 7,000 undiscovered
plant species still exist
in Australia."

although 7000 is a big number, but 18000 species have already been discovered.so most of the species have been discovered.

in 3rd question A can be ruled out because "In scientific disciplines from reproductive physiology and
evolutionary biology to medicine, Australia‘s native species are hailed as
a unique and priceless heritage. "
also there is no mention about solar energy and hydroelectric power.
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Re: Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust [#permalink] New post 07 Mar 2014, 03:33
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Re: Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2014, 10:30
Except for first question I got others right. As for 1, Where is it mentioned in the passage that Australian rain forests are different from other rain forests?
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Re: Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2014, 22:17
The best way to approach this question is by POE.

"To a large extent, but more difficult to quantify, Australia‘s fauna and flora are being used as a unique resource. In scientific disciplines from reproductive physiology and evolutionary biology to medicine, Australia‘s native species are hailed as a unique and priceless heritage."

This sentence is the basis for the rejection of option D as an answer to question 1.
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Re: Far from being fixed on Earth, scientists now know that Aust   [#permalink] 11 Mar 2014, 22:17
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