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# At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconsc

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At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconsc  [#permalink]

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09 Dec 2018, 07:12
Question 1
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Question 2
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At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconscious stimulus-response mechanisms; when scrutinized, it often reveals a stereotyped, inflexible quality. A classic series of experiments were performed on the female sphex wasp. The mother leaves her egg sealed in a burrow alongside a paralyzed grasshopper or other Insect, which her larva can eat when It hatches. Typically, before she deposits the grasshopper in the burrow, she leaves it at the entrance and goes inside to Inspect the burrow. If the inspection reveals no problems, she drags the grasshopper inside by Its antennae. Once the larvae hatch, they feed on the paralyzed insects until ready to spin a cocoon and undergo metamorphosis.

Entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre discovered that if the grasshopper's antennae are removed while the wasp Is Inside Inspecting the nest, the wasp will not drag It into the burrow, even though the legs or ovipositor could serve the same function as the antennae. Later Fabre found more evidence of the wasp's dependence on predetermined routine. While a wasp was performing her Inspection of a burrow, he moved the grasshopper a few centimeters away from the burrow's mouth. The wasp brought the grasshopper back to the edge of the burrow, then began a whole new Inspection. When Fabre took this opportunity to move the food again, the wasp repeated her routine. Fabre performed his disruptive maneuver forty times, and the wasp's response never changed.

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) demonstrate, based on examples, that insects lack awareness of their surroundings
(B) argue that insects are unique in their dependence on rigid routines
(C) analyze the maternal behavior of wasps
(D) contrast typical wasp behavior with unconscious behavior
(E) contend that insect behavior can rely on rigid routines that appear to be unconscious

2. Which of the following best describes the purpose of the second paragraph of the passage?

(A) To provide experimental evidence for the thesis articulated in the first paragraph
(B) To introduce a hypothesis about insect behavior
(C) To illustrate the ways in which grasshoppers are unsuitable for the wasp’s purposes
(D) To explore the significance of the wasp’s varied reactions to certain stimuli
(E) To acknowledge experimental evidence that does not support the author’s thesis

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Re: At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconsc  [#permalink]

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09 Dec 2018, 15:51
At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconscious stimulus-response mechanisms; when scrutinized, it often reveals a stereotyped, inflexible quality. A classic series of experiments were performed on the female sphex wasp. The mother leaves her egg sealed in a burrow alongside a paralyzed grasshopper or other Insect, which her larva can eat when It hatches. Typically, before she deposits the grasshopper in the burrow, she leaves it at the entrance and goes inside to Inspect the burrow. If the inspection reveals no problems, she drags the grasshopper inside by Its antennae. Once the larvae hatch, they feed on the paralyzed insects until ready to spin a cocoon and undergo metamorphosis.

Entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre discovered that if the grasshopper's antennae are removed while the wasp Is Inside Inspecting the nest, the wasp will not drag It into the burrow, even though the legs or ovipositor could serve the same function as the antennae. Later Fabre found more evidence of the wasp's dependence on predetermined routine. While a wasp was performing her Inspection of a burrow, he moved the grasshopper a few centimeters away from the burrow's mouth. The wasp brought the grasshopper back to the edge of the burrow, then began a whole new Inspection. When Fabre took this opportunity to move the food again, the wasp repeated her routine. Fabre performed his disruptive maneuver forty times, and the wasp's response never changed.
1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) demonstrate, based on examples, that insects lack awareness of their surroundings
(B) argue that insects are unique in their dependence on rigid routines
(C) analyze the maternal behavior of wasps
(D) contrast typical wasp behavior with unconscious behavior
(E) contend that insect behavior can rely on rigid routines that appear to be unconscious

2. Which of the following best describes the purpose of the second paragraph of the passage?

(A) To provide experimental evidence for the thesis articulated in the first paragraph
(B) To introduce a hypothesis about insect behavior
(C) To illustrate the ways in which grasshoppers are unsuitable for the wasp’s purposes
(D) To explore the significance of the wasp’s varied reactions to certain stimuli
(E) To acknowledge experimental evidence that does not support the author’s thesis

1) From paragraph 1, At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconscious stimulus-response mechanisms; when scrutinized, it often reveals a stereotyped, inflexible quality.
The whole passage illustrates this line and the author's experiment in the second paragraph is complementary to this statement. Hence, IMO, Option E.

2) As stated above, the author conducts an experiment to test his hypothesis by moving the grasshopper away from the burrow. So, IMO, option A.
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At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconsc  [#permalink]

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21 Apr 2019, 17:09
1
Official Explanation

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to

Difficulty Level: 650

Explanation

(A) demonstrate, based on examples, that insects lack awareness of their
The insect is clearly aware—she sees that the grasshopper has moved and she goes and gets it. The point is about insects’ unconscious behavior, not their general awareness.surroundings

(B) argue that insects are unique in their dependence on rigid routines
The author does argue that insects are dependent on rigid routines but never claims that they are unique in this way.

(C) analyze the maternal behavior of wasps
The author uses a couple of examples of wasp behavior to make a more general point about insect behavior.

(D) contrast typical wasp behavior with unconscious behavior
The author does not present typical behavior and unconscious behavior as different things. Rather, the typical behavior never changes, even when a disruption of the routine would seem to warrant changing a behavior.

(E) contend that insect behavior can rely on rigid routines that appear to be unconscious
CORRECT. The author claims that, at times, insect behavior is inflexible, or rigid, and the insect does not appear capable of responding to an unexpected or changed situation.

2. Which of the following best describes the purpose of the second paragraph of the passage?

Difficulty Level: 600

Explanation

(A) To provide experimental evidence for the thesis articulated in the first paragraph
CORRECT. The second paragraph does talk about experiments, and those experiments do support what the author claimed in the first paragraph.

(B) To introduce a hypothesis about insect behavior
The passage does introduce such a hypothesis, but it does so in the first paragraph, not the second one. This is the overall point of the passage, but the question asks about only the second paragraph. (True but not right)

(C) To illustrate the ways in which grasshoppers are unsuitable for the wasp’s purposes
The passage doesn’t say that the grasshoppers are unsuitable. This trap might be set for someone who is reading very superficially and draws an erroneous conclusion about the experiments with grasshoppers. (Out of scope)

(D) To explore the significance of the wasp’s varied reactions to certain stimuli
The Point of the passage is that the wasp does not change her behavior even when the circumstances of her situation change. (Direct contradiction)

(E) To acknowledge experimental evidence that does not support the author’s thesis
The evidence in the second paragraph does support the author’s thesis. (Direct contradiction)

Hope it Helps
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At times, insect behavior appears to be explicable in terms of unconsc   [#permalink] 21 Apr 2019, 17:09
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