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# Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary

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Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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15 Aug 2013, 22:29
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Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary dead end, producing sterile offspring, if any at all. For some specific species of birds, however, such pairings may indeed bring evolutionary advantages to the participants. In the case of the female collared flycatchers of Gotland, three distinct factors may work to make interspecific pairings with pied flycatcher males reproductively beneficial.

In many instances, female collared flycatchers nest with male pied flycatchers while continuing to mate with other collared flycatchers, in effect parasitizing the pied flycatchers, who invest in rearing and fledging any offspring. Often, more than half of the offspring raised by interspecific flycatcher pairs are, in fact, not hybrids. Furthermore, an estimated 65 percent of the hybrid offspring on the resident pied flycatcher male are male. Because hybrid females are sterile and male are not, this male bias minimizes the primary disadvantage of interspecific matings: sterile offspring. Habitat specialization may be a third mechanism: These pairings tend to occur in the late spring when the coniferous woods favored by the pied flycatcher provide a greater availability of food than the deciduous woods where the collared flycatchers tend to live. Together, these factors form a mechanism to improve substantially the reproductive success of female collared flycatchers beyond what would be expected of interspecific mating with pied flycatcher males.

Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species. According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring. To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

A highly unusual behavior, interspecific mating seems to provide certain reproductive advantages to the collared flycatcher female. However, it remains unclear whether the mating behavior of female collared flycatchers evolved to circumvent the usual problems with interspecific mating or whether the behavior is simply an extension of how female collared flycatchers behave when mating within their own species.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

[Reveal] Spoiler:
D

2 - According to the passage, female collared flycatchers' mating with male pied flycatchers could be explained by any of the following reasons EXCEPT:
(A) Food is more available in pied flycatcher territories during the mating season.
(B) Male pied flycatchers can help raise offspring successfully, even if the offspring are not theirs.
(C) Male pied flycatchers sire more female offspring than do collared flycatcher males, increasing the reproductive success of the female collared flycatcher.
(D) Females are known to nest with subordinate males while pursuing extra-pair copulation with higher-quality males.
(E) Females enjoy greater reproductive success by pair-bonding with an inferior male than by not pair-bonding at all.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

3 - The bias toward male offspring resulting from the mating of collared flycatcher females and pied flycatcher males is presented as evidence that
(A) collared flycatcher females that mate with pied flycatcher males have more dominant male offspring.
(B) the offspring from extra-pair matings with collared flycatcher males are more frequently male.
(C) female flycatchers are not deterred from interspecific pairing by the likelihood of sterile hybrid offspring.
(D) males are produced to reduce interspecific inbreeding in future generations.
(E) interspecific breeding is normal in all varieties of flycatchers.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

4 - It can be inferred from the passage that
(A) food resources are an important determinant of success in raising offspring.
(B) having 50 percent male offspring is not optimal for collared flycatcher pairs.
(C) flycatchers generally mate for life.
(D) males do not vary in the benefits they provide to their offspring.
(E) over half of all females engage in extra-pair matings.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
A

5 - Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?
(A) All traits related to particular functions have evolved only for those particular functions.
(B) Flycatchers represent the best population for studies of bird-mating behavior.
(C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved.
(D) Evolution has played no role in shaping the behavior of interspecifically paired flycatchers.
(E) Hybridization is generally beneficial.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
B

I am having a tough time understanding question 5 and why the right answer is the right answer.
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #1 OA
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #2 OA
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #3 OA
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #4 OA
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #5 OA
[Reveal] Spoiler: Question #6 OA
If you have any questions
New!
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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16 Aug 2013, 03:08
2
KUDOS
siddharthkanjilal wrote:
I am having a tough time understanding question 5 and why the right answer is the right answer.

hi ,
that was really a nice passage.
+1 for you.
will request you to keep posting RCs like this.

now lets come to question 5
it would have been better if you would have told in which all option you got doubt.
let me explain C THOUGH.

5 - Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?
(A) All traits related to particular functions have evolved only for those particular functions.
(B) Flycatchers represent the best population for studies of bird-mating behavior.
(C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved.
(D) Evolution has played no role in shaping the behavior of interspecifically paired flycatchers.
(E) Hybridization is generally beneficial.

If you locate Professor Rowher..it is in 2nd last para:
Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species.
According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring.To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

the passage starts by saying:
all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating===>means it is thought that behaviour of intermating ==>this was evolved in order to CIRCUMVENT.....something...
BUT (AS THE PASSAGE STARTS WITH ALTHOUGH)
studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species.
then he has given the examples of professor.

option (C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved
CLEARLY this conveys the same...it means behaviour..can also been seen with subordinate collared flyctcher.

in short : intermating was done with those catcher who was having enough food.....for the same purpose means for food this female flycatcher will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring

hope it helps
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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16 Aug 2013, 10:59
1
KUDOS
Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?

Siddarth, The questions asks us to draw an inference based on what Professor Rowher had to say. This is a hybrid question (details + inference question) for which we can simply focus on para 3. An analogy method could be used for such a question. Here, we have to look at the answers and make sure their method of reasoning is similar to what Prof. Rowher says.

Breakdown of Para 3 - Acc. to Prof.
1. Collared flycatcher choose to nest with sub. collared flycatcher (who have good territory) - Why? - engender a successful offspring. We can conclude that female collared flycatchers want to raise successful offspring, therefore, they nest with sub. collared flycatcher with good territory.
2. Now notice the transition word However, even after doing so, they still copulate with other attractive males. This sentence is a counter argument, where prof. notices that they still mate with others- why? because they want to engender the best offspring.
3. Last transition, word- Thus, just sums up the previous sentences.

And now if we look at the opening sentence of the para. "Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species."
.
We have to notice that Prof. Rowher will likely speak or affirm his thoughts for the italicized part, and in his observations he affirms the sentence. The author is using Prof. Rowhers observations as evidence to support the topic sentence.
From the passage, we can conclude that the someone is doing something for a purpose, and even after accomplishing, it still seeks to fulfill that purpose. In this case the female flyed catcher comes to behave in a certain way for its offspring (raising successful offspring = need good territory), and even after being successful it still seeks others, - Why? - now the evolved behavior has become functional - and second nature to it.

Thus, it can be clearly noted that option C is the answer. Also, notice the word even plays a crucial role in this sentence. no other option has that word or any similar word. Whereas, we know that this is a critical word describing the behavior of the female catcher in the passage.

You can also use the elimination method:
A. likely, but Prof Rowher only talks about one trait here. "ALL traits" is a red flag.
B. Prof. Rowher is not talking about the bird mating in general - Out of scope
D. This is an opposite answer. Evolution in behavior has played a role.

Tips to eliminate options in Gmat RC :
1. Eliminate answers that are absolute (some rare exceptions)
2. Understand ques type.
Inference ques - assumptions are wrong in this quest type, an inference must always hold true and we should be able to verify it in the passage.

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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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18 Sep 2014, 09:58
1
KUDOS
maggie27 wrote:
I need help with Q1 and Q6.

Q6: subordinate appears in paragraph 3
In it, the professor says 2 things
A) females nest with the males with the best territory
B) females copulate outside pair-bonds for the best genetics

Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

This is an alternative explanation to what was said earlier, in which explanations are given as to why females copulate AND nest with the pieds
The females collars are with the male pieds for the resources and have offsprings with whatever will give the best offspring, ie with male collars

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

Q1:
So first do elimination. A, B, and E should be immediately thrown out. Let me know if you don't know why.
C and D are left.
C is implied in the last paragraph, but it's not the primary purpose of the author.
Paragraph 1 and 2 go into 1 type of mating behavior, and paragraph 3 goes into a 2nd type of mating behavior.
Paragraph 4 says we don't know exactly why this happens.

So most of this passage is focused on possible explanations for this bird's mating behavior therefore the answer is D.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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16 Aug 2013, 09:07
Thanks. I did not mention any option because I felt all were wrong.

Now it is clear, especially your explanation of what choice C actually means.
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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16 Oct 2013, 10:10
siddharthkanjilal wrote:
Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary dead end, producing sterile offspring, if any at all. For some specific species of birds, however, such pairings may indeed bring evolutionary advantages to the participants. In the case of the female collared flycatchers of Gotland, three distinct factors may work to make interspecific pairings with pied flycatcher males reproductively beneficial.

In many instances, female collared flycatchers nest with male pied flycatchers while continuing to mate with other collared flycatchers, in effect parasitizing the pied flycatchers, who invest in rearing and fledging any offspring. Often, more than half of the offspring raised by interspecific flycatcher pairs are, in fact, not hybrids. Furthermore, an estimated 65 percent of the hybrid offspring on the resident pied flycatcher male are male. Because hybrid females are sterile and male are not, this male bias minimizes the primary disadvantage of interspecific matings: sterile offspring. Habitat specialization may be a third mechanism: These pairings tend to occur in the late spring when the coniferous woods favored by the pied flycatcher provide a greater availability of food than the deciduous woods where the collared flycatchers tend to live. Together, these factors form a mechanism to improve substantially the reproductive success of female collared flycatchers beyond what would be expected of interspecific mating with pied flycatcher males.

Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species. According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring. To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

A highly unusual behavior, interspecific mating seems to provide certain reproductive advantages to the collared flycatcher female. However, it remains unclear whether the mating behavior of female collared flycatchers evolved to circumvent the usual problems with interspecific mating or whether the behavior is simply an extension of how female collared flycatchers behave when mating within their own species.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

[Reveal] Spoiler:
D

2 - According to the passage, female collared flycatchers' mating with male pied flycatchers could be explained by any of the following reasons EXCEPT:
(A) Food is more available in pied flycatcher territories during the mating season.
(B) Male pied flycatchers can help raise offspring successfully, even if the offspring are not theirs.
(C) Male pied flycatchers sire more female offspring than do collared flycatcher males, increasing the reproductive success of the female collared flycatcher.
(D) Females are known to nest with subordinate males while pursuing extra-pair copulation with higher-quality males.
(E) Females enjoy greater reproductive success by pair-bonding with an inferior male than by not pair-bonding at all.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

3 - The bias toward male offspring resulting from the mating of collared flycatcher females and pied flycatcher males is presented as evidence that
(A) collared flycatcher females that mate with pied flycatcher males have more dominant male offspring.
(B) the offspring from extra-pair matings with collared flycatcher males are more frequently male.
(C) female flycatchers are not deterred from interspecific pairing by the likelihood of sterile hybrid offspring.
(D) males are produced to reduce interspecific inbreeding in future generations.
(E) interspecific breeding is normal in all varieties of flycatchers.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

4 - It can be inferred from the passage that
(A) food resources are an important determinant of success in raising offspring.
(B) having 50 percent male offspring is not optimal for collared flycatcher pairs.
(C) flycatchers generally mate for life.
(D) males do not vary in the benefits they provide to their offspring.
(E) over half of all females engage in extra-pair matings.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
A

5 - Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?
(A) All traits related to particular functions have evolved only for those particular functions.
(B) Flycatchers represent the best population for studies of bird-mating behavior.
(C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved.
(D) Evolution has played no role in shaping the behavior of interspecifically paired flycatchers.
(E) Hybridization is generally beneficial.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
B

I am having a tough time understanding question 5 and why the right answer is the right answer.

This was a toughie! OE for each question? Will provide come nice Kudos if explained thoroughly
Cheers!
J
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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14 May 2014, 13:53
siddharthkanjilal wrote:
Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary dead end, producing sterile offspring, if any at all. For some specific species of birds, however, such pairings may indeed bring evolutionary advantages to the participants. In the case of the female collared flycatchers of Gotland, three distinct factors may work to make interspecific pairings with pied flycatcher males reproductively beneficial.

In many instances, female collared flycatchers nest with male pied flycatchers while continuing to mate with other collared flycatchers, in effect parasitizing the pied flycatchers, who invest in rearing and fledging any offspring. Often, more than half of the offspring raised by interspecific flycatcher pairs are, in fact, not hybrids. Furthermore, an estimated 65 percent of the hybrid offspring on the resident pied flycatcher male are male. Because hybrid females are sterile and male are not, this male bias minimizes the primary disadvantage of interspecific matings: sterile offspring. Habitat specialization may be a third mechanism: These pairings tend to occur in the late spring when the coniferous woods favored by the pied flycatcher provide a greater availability of food than the deciduous woods where the collared flycatchers tend to live. Together, these factors form a mechanism to improve substantially the reproductive success of female collared flycatchers beyond what would be expected of interspecific mating with pied flycatcher males.

Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species. According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring. To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

A highly unusual behavior, interspecific mating seems to provide certain reproductive advantages to the collared flycatcher female. However, it remains unclear whether the mating behavior of female collared flycatchers evolved to circumvent the usual problems with interspecific mating or whether the behavior is simply an extension of how female collared flycatchers behave when mating within their own species.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

[Reveal] Spoiler:
D

2 - According to the passage, female collared flycatchers' mating with male pied flycatchers could be explained by any of the following reasons EXCEPT:
(A) Food is more available in pied flycatcher territories during the mating season.
(B) Male pied flycatchers can help raise offspring successfully, even if the offspring are not theirs.
(C) Male pied flycatchers sire more female offspring than do collared flycatcher males, increasing the reproductive success of the female collared flycatcher.
(D) Females are known to nest with subordinate males while pursuing extra-pair copulation with higher-quality males.
(E) Females enjoy greater reproductive success by pair-bonding with an inferior male than by not pair-bonding at all.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

3 - The bias toward male offspring resulting from the mating of collared flycatcher females and pied flycatcher males is presented as evidence that
(A) collared flycatcher females that mate with pied flycatcher males have more dominant male offspring.
(B) the offspring from extra-pair matings with collared flycatcher males are more frequently male.
(C) female flycatchers are not deterred from interspecific pairing by the likelihood of sterile hybrid offspring.
(D) males are produced to reduce interspecific inbreeding in future generations.
(E) interspecific breeding is normal in all varieties of flycatchers.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

4 - It can be inferred from the passage that
(A) food resources are an important determinant of success in raising offspring.
(B) having 50 percent male offspring is not optimal for collared flycatcher pairs.
(C) flycatchers generally mate for life.
(D) males do not vary in the benefits they provide to their offspring.
(E) over half of all females engage in extra-pair matings.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
A

5 - Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?
(A) All traits related to particular functions have evolved only for those particular functions.
(B) Flycatchers represent the best population for studies of bird-mating behavior.
(C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved.
(D) Evolution has played no role in shaping the behavior of interspecifically paired flycatchers.
(E) Hybridization is generally beneficial.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
B

I am having a tough time understanding question 5 and why the right answer is the right answer.

Really a nice passage. I had a hard time doing Question 2. Can someone explain?
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Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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18 Sep 2014, 07:39
aks456 wrote:
siddharthkanjilal wrote:
Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary dead end, producing sterile offspring, if any at all. For some specific species of birds, however, such pairings may indeed bring evolutionary advantages to the participants. In the case of the female collared flycatchers of Gotland, three distinct factors may work to make interspecific pairings with pied flycatcher males reproductively beneficial.

In many instances, female collared flycatchers nest with male pied flycatchers while continuing to mate with other collared flycatchers, in effect parasitizing the pied flycatchers, who invest in rearing and fledging any offspring. Often, more than half of the offspring raised by interspecific flycatcher pairs are, in fact, not hybrids. Furthermore, an estimated 65 percent of the hybrid offspring on the resident pied flycatcher male are male. Because hybrid females are sterile and male are not, this male bias minimizes the primary disadvantage of interspecific matings: sterile offspring. Habitat specialization may be a third mechanism: These pairings tend to occur in the late spring when the coniferous woods favored by the pied flycatcher provide a greater availability of food than the deciduous woods where the collared flycatchers tend to live. Together, these factors form a mechanism to improve substantially the reproductive success of female collared flycatchers beyond what would be expected of interspecific mating with pied flycatcher males.

Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species. According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring. To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

A highly unusual behavior, interspecific mating seems to provide certain reproductive advantages to the collared flycatcher female. However, it remains unclear whether the mating behavior of female collared flycatchers evolved to circumvent the usual problems with interspecific mating or whether the behavior is simply an extension of how female collared flycatchers behave when mating within their own species.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

[Reveal] Spoiler:
D

2 - According to the passage, female collared flycatchers' mating with male pied flycatchers could be explained by any of the following reasons EXCEPT:
(A) Food is more available in pied flycatcher territories during the mating season.
(B) Male pied flycatchers can help raise offspring successfully, even if the offspring are not theirs.
(C) Male pied flycatchers sire more female offspring than do collared flycatcher males, increasing the reproductive success of the female collared flycatcher.
(D) Females are known to nest with subordinate males while pursuing extra-pair copulation with higher-quality males.
(E) Females enjoy greater reproductive success by pair-bonding with an inferior male than by not pair-bonding at all.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

3 - The bias toward male offspring resulting from the mating of collared flycatcher females and pied flycatcher males is presented as evidence that
(A) collared flycatcher females that mate with pied flycatcher males have more dominant male offspring.
(B) the offspring from extra-pair matings with collared flycatcher males are more frequently male.
(C) female flycatchers are not deterred from interspecific pairing by the likelihood of sterile hybrid offspring.
(D) males are produced to reduce interspecific inbreeding in future generations.
(E) interspecific breeding is normal in all varieties of flycatchers.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

4 - It can be inferred from the passage that
(A) food resources are an important determinant of success in raising offspring.
(B) having 50 percent male offspring is not optimal for collared flycatcher pairs.
(C) flycatchers generally mate for life.
(D) males do not vary in the benefits they provide to their offspring.
(E) over half of all females engage in extra-pair matings.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
A

5 - Professor Rowher would most likely agree with which of the following statements?
(A) All traits related to particular functions have evolved only for those particular functions.
(B) Flycatchers represent the best population for studies of bird-mating behavior.
(C) Behaviors may appear functional even under conditions other than those under which the behaviors evolved.
(D) Evolution has played no role in shaping the behavior of interspecifically paired flycatchers.
(E) Hybridization is generally beneficial.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
C

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
B

I am having a tough time understanding question 5 and why the right answer is the right answer.

Really a nice passage. I had a hard time doing Question 2. Can someone explain?

Hey there,
For Q2, please see the highlighted portion. Male pied flycatchers produce 65% male offsprings and which is opposite to what is option C tells!
Hope I helped!

I need help with Q1 and Q6.
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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18 Sep 2014, 10:15
anaccident wrote:
maggie27 wrote:
I need help with Q1 and Q6.

Q6: subordinate appears in paragraph 3
In it, the professor says 2 things
A) females nest with the males with the best territory
B) females copulate outside pair-bonds for the best genetics

Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

This is an alternative explanation to what was said earlier, in which explanations are given as to why females copulate AND nest with the pieds
The females collars are with the male pieds for the resources and have offsprings with whatever will give the best offspring, ie with male collars

6 - The mating behavior of female collared flycatchers paired with subordinate male flycatchers is offered as
(A) an unwarranted assumption behind the adaptive explanation of interspecific matings.
(B) an alternative explanation for pair matings of collared females with pied males.
(C) evidence supporting the hypothesis of adaption for interspecific breeding.
(D) a discredited mainstream explanation for why hybridization is a dead end.
(E) proof in support of the theory that collared and pied flycatchers are separate species.

Q1:
So first do elimination. A, B, and E should be immediately thrown out. Let me know if you don't know why.
C and D are left.
C is implied in the last paragraph, but it's not the primary purpose of the author.
Paragraph 1 and 2 go into 1 type of mating behavior, and paragraph 3 goes into a 2nd type of mating behavior.
Paragraph 4 says we don't know exactly why this happens.

So most of this passage is focused on possible explanations for this bird's mating behavior therefore the answer is D.

1 - The author's primary purpose is to
(A) criticize the basis of a scientific theory.
(B) defend a hypothesis concerning bird-mating behaviors.
(C) point out the need for further study of female collared flycatchers.
(D) describe two possible explanations for the interspecific mating behavior of female collared flycatchers.
(E) defend an unpopular view of a natural phenomenon

There goes ur +1! Helpful indeed.
However ur answer makes me wonder how did u actually manage to make out the answer for Q6.It was a big passage with lot of things said.
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Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2014, 07:43
siddharthkanjilal wrote:
Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary dead end, producing sterile offspring, if any at all. For some specific species of birds, however, such pairings may indeed bring evolutionary advantages to the participants. In the case of the female collared flycatchers of Gotland, three distinct factors may work to make interspecific pairings with pied flycatcher males reproductively beneficial.

In many instances, female collared flycatchers nest with male pied flycatchers while continuing to mate with other collared flycatchers, in effect parasitizing the pied flycatchers, who invest in rearing and fledging any offspring. Often, more than half of the offspring raised by interspecific flycatcher pairs are, in fact, not hybrids. Furthermore, an estimated 65 percent of the hybrid offspring on the resident pied flycatcher male are male. Because hybrid females are sterile and male are not, this male bias minimizes the primary disadvantage of interspecific matings: sterile offspring. Habitat specialization may be a third mechanism: These pairings tend to occur in the late spring when the coniferous woods favored by the pied flycatcher provide a greater availability of food than the deciduous woods where the collared flycatchers tend to live. Together, these factors form a mechanism to improve substantially the reproductive success of female collared flycatchers beyond what would be expected of interspecific mating with pied flycatcher males.

Although all three of these mechanisms appear to act in concert to form a single elaborate mechanism specifically evolved to circumvent the usual disadvantages of interspecific mating, studies have shown similar motivations for the behavior of female collared flycatchers mating within the species. According to Professor Siever Rohwer, collared flycatcher females will choose to nest with subordinate collared flycatcher males that inhabit good territory because collared flycatcher females must pair-bond in order to be successful in raising offspring. To engender the best offspring, however, the females will continue to copulate with higher-quality collared males with whom they are not paired. Thus, females seem to be nesting with males of any species with the best territories available at the time, but they will continue to mate with more attractive males outside of the pair bonds.

A highly unusual behavior, interspecific mating seems to provide certain reproductive advantages to the collared flycatcher female. However, it remains unclear whether the mating behavior of female collared flycatchers evolved to circumvent the usual problems with interspecific mating or whether the behavior is simply an extension of how female collared flycatchers behave when mating within their own species.

Great passage and Quite Comprehensive set of questions..
Got stuck in Q6 . Nice explanation by anaccident
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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11 Apr 2015, 03:16
Hi! Can anyone help me with Q3? I get A and don't understand why C is the right answer.
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Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary [#permalink]

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28 Jun 2015, 09:31
anaccident:

Can you please explain on what basis did u eliminate answer choice B,E for Question 1.
Re: Generally, interspecific matings represent an evolutionary   [#permalink] 28 Jun 2015, 09:31
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