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Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather

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Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice, and they nest on nearby land. Guillemots need 80 consecutive snow-free days in a year to raise their chicks, so until average temperatures in the Arctic began to rise recently, the guillemots’ range was limited to the southernmost Arctic coast. Therefore, if the warming continues, the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?


(A) Even if the warming trend continues, there will still be years in which guillemot chicks are killed by an unusually early snow.

(B) If the Arctic warming continues, guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.

(C) Guillemots nest in coastal areas, where temperatures are generally higher than in inland areas.

(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.

(E) The fish that guillemots eat are currently preyed on by a wider variety of predators in the southernmost Arctic regions than they are farther north.


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Originally posted by GODSPEED on 07 Aug 2009, 20:39.
Last edited by Bunuel on 06 Sep 2018, 05:48, edited 2 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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QOTD: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jan 2018, 21:12
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So poor GMATNinjaTwo lives in New Jersey, where he's suffered through something called a "bomb cyclone" that caused sub-zero (Fahrenheit!) temperatures. He says that he saw a guillemot in his own backyard last week, but that sighting hasn't been verified. And he recommends this two-minute video about guillemot chicks: https://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/guillemots.

Anyway, back to the GMAT... the conclusion of the argument is that the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast IF the warming in the Arctic continues. How does the author arrive at this conclusion?

  • We are told that guillemots reside in Arctic regions and feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice.
  • The birds nest on land near the floating ice.
  • The birds need 80 consecutive snow-free days in a year to raise their chicks. Until recently, this fact limited the birds' range to the southernmost Arctic coast.
  • However, average temperatures in the Arctic have begun to rise.
  • The author thinks that the rise in temperatures will cause the birds' range to be extended northward along the coast. This might make sense... we can infer that it gets colder as you head north, so at some point along the coast there's a limit beyond which it is too cold/snowy for the birds' to raise chicks. If it starts to get warmer in general, that limit might be pushed northward.

Now we need an answer choice that would WEAKEN this logic:

Quote:
(A) Even if the warming trend continues, there will still be years in which guillemot chicks are killed by an unusually early snow.

An unusually early snow could happen even along the southernmost coast of the Arctic. As long as this is an unusual occurrence and not a regular occurrence, it would not prevent the guillemot's from moving northward. Sure, it would cause some bad years for the guillemots, but that would be true regardless of where they are living (i.e. regardless of how far north they live). Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) If the Arctic warming continues, guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.

Choice (B) is tempting, but make sure you notice the word "current". The guillemots already have predators in the south. That doesn't PREVENT the guillemots from living in the south; it simply provides a challenge that the guillemots have to deal with.

If there were FEWER predators farther north, that would certainly make it easier for the guillemots. But if the guillemots' current predators simply move north as well, then the guillemots will face the same danger that they did in the south. Again, this wouldn't PREVENT the guillemots from living in the north; instead, it would mean they have to deal with the same predators that they deal with in the south.

Choice (B) can be eliminated.

Quote:
(C) Guillemots nest in coastal areas, where temperatures are generally higher than in inland areas.

This fact has no bearing on the author's argument. Will the rising temperatures allow the guillemots to expand their range? Choice (C) provides no evidence either way and can be eliminated.

Quote:
(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.

The point of the argument is that "the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged." We're not concerned with decreasing the number of guillemots, only the size of their range. The author's reasoning is that their range will expand as the bird moves northward.

The author assumes that the bird will only add to its range as it moves northward. Choice (D) suggests that the northward expansion will come with a decrease in the range along the southern coast (if the thin ice disappears, the fish that gather under the thin ice might have to move northward). Although this doesn't necessarily disprove the author's point, it's seriously weakens the argument. Hang on to this one.

Quote:
(E) The fish that guillemots eat are currently preyed on by a wider variety of predators in the southernmost Arctic regions than they are farther north.

Choice (E) suggests that the guillemots would have LESS competition for food as they move northward. This is evidence that the guillemots WILL be able to survive as they move in that direction. If instead choice (E) said the opposite (that the fish are preyed on by a wider variety of predators farther north), then it would weaken the argument. As is, choice (E) strengthens the argument and can be eliminated.

(D) is the best answer.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Feb 2010, 19:11
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Hey All,

Enough questions enough that I figured it might be worth my weighing in. As any good instructor would, I'm going to focus on the passage first.

Conclusion: Warming will extend Guillemots range north

Premises: Guillemots feed on fish beneath ice, nesting nearby. Need snow-free area to raise chicks. Area is warming, particularly north.

Assumption: Something other than the warming will keep them from extending range.

We know the assumption will be this limited, because otherwise the argument is solid (i.e. if the warm area is expanding, and they can live in warm weather, then obviously their range will expand).

(A) Even if the warming trend continues, there will still be years in which guillemot chicks are killed by an unusually early snow.
Problem: This has no connection to the issue of range, because this would happen anywhere.

(B) If the Arctic warming continues, guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.
Problem: In a number of answer choices here, the question is trying to trick you into thinking that the conclusion is that the guillemots will THRIVE in the new areas. But that's not the conclusion. The conclusion is merely that the range of areas in which they can survive will expand. This has no effect on that. The same predators joining them in the new area will result in much the same lifestyle the guillemots already have (same predators).

(C) Guillemots nest in coastal areas, where temperatures are generally higher than in inland areas.
Problem: This doesn't affect the conclusion, which is that the increasing temperatures ELSEWHERE will expand the range of the guillemots.

(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.
Answer: This one may look out of scope, but remember that scope isn't really an issue on strengthen/weaken questions; you're allowed to bring in other information. If the thin ice disappears, then the guillemots will not be able to expand their habitat, because they survive on the fish that live under the ice. This relates to their ability to expand. To contrast with B, the predators are THE SAME in the new area or the old. In D, the food source is DIFFERENT (worse) in the new area, which weakens the conclusion.


(E) The fish that guillemots eat are currently preyed on by a wider variety of predators in the southernmost Arctic regions than they are farther north.
Problem: This actually strengthens the argument, because the guillemots are planning to move north. fewer predators means a better chance of succeeding.

Hope that helps!
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Jan 2010, 14:44
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Thinking about (D):
Quote:
(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.


If these birds prey on special kind of fish, it's logical to assume, that without this fish guillemots won't be able to maintain current habitat.

So, if thin ice in southern arctics disappears guillemots will be forced to move north. It won't be the enlargement of guillemots' range, rather simply movement to better place.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Jan 2010, 23:39
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B

gullimots predators will move north which weakens the conclusion I think.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Feb 2010, 12:14
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pjalan wrote:
B

gullimots predators will move north which weakens the conclusion I think.


between B & D, latter looks more correct as B says about extension of range of guillemots' predator but that doesn't weaken the conclusion as the argument in D. Spreading of predators will be a deterrent but if there is no food available in the southern coast they are bound to move northwards, daring the predator.

Whereas D is a better answer since it clearly refutes the concept of enlargement and imposes the idea that their dewelling has to move northwards due to lack of availability of food in south. :P


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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jul 2011, 06:42
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Lets analyze the answer choices and see which one stands scrutiny. To find the choice which weakens the argument, we need to select the choice that provides evidence that the birds' range will not be extended.

(A): The keyword here is 'still'. If there are years now when the chicks are being killed by early snow, has it wiped out the birds? No. Therefore if conditions are favorable it cannot act as an impediment to their range expansion. Incorrect.
(B): Guillemots have been co-existing with their predators where they currently live. If the predators migrate northwards, why will this stop the birds from doing so too? Incorrect.
(C): If temperatures are rising then they will be higher than they are now in inland areas too, possibly allowing the birds to live there. Incorrect.
(D): CORRECT. If the ice in the southern arctic disappears, the birds will be forced to move northwards. However, their RANGE will not be extended as they will just shift from a more southern to a more northern point. There is no evidence that says that they will live over longer stretches of land.
(E): This means there will be more fish for the birds to eat in the North. This supports the conclusion that they will move north and extend their range.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jan 2012, 07:53
I understand (D) perfectly. But can someone please explain why fish under the ice will disappear because of melting ice?

Quote:
Answer: This one may look out of scope, but remember that scope isn't really an issue on strengthen/weaken questions; you're allowed to bring in other information. If the thin ice disappears, then the guillemots will not be able to expand their habitat, because they survive on the fish that live under the ice. This relates to their ability to expand. To contrast with B, the predators are THE SAME in the new area or the old. In D, the food source is DIFFERENT (worse) in the new area, which weakens the conclusion


We have to assume that fish needs ice in order to survive. But that's just another assumption.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Jun 2013, 06:04
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an explanation could be since the premise says "Guillemots are birds for arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice, and they nest on nearby lands." --> D suggests that if this ice has melted, it becomes easier to feed on fishes hence no reason to move northward
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Oct 2013, 20:34
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I choose D.
First, I will break down the stimulus.
Premise 1: Guillemots feed on fish beneath thin sheets of floating ice, and nest on nearby lands.
Premise 2: Guillemots need 80 consecutive snow free days to raise their chicks, presently, the guillemots' range was limited to the southernmost arctic coast.
Conclusion: if the warming continues, the guillemots' range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast.
We can see that this is a Cause n Effect reasoning. The warming => the guillemots' range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward

This is a weaken question type and we must identify an answer which shows that when the cause occurs, the effect doesnt occur or reversely or find an alternative cause for the effect...just as the method of CR Bible.
A) Even if the warming trend continues, there will still be years in which guillemots chicks are killed by an unusually early snow.
=> This doesnt effect the conclusion much because the conclusion tells us the guillemots come to grow in the northward.
B) If Arctic warming continues, guillemots' current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north
=> It is too far if we infer that guillemots' current predators succeeded in moving farther north and control the population of the guillemots there. And in this answer, the word is "likely" not "surely".
C) Guillemots nest in coastal areas, where tempratures are generally higher than inland areas.
=> OOS. The argument makes no statement about inland areas or any comparision between inland n costal areas.
D) If the Arctic warming continues much of the thin ice in southern arctic will disappear.
=> Thin ice disappear => birth moves from south to north, So, the guillemots' range wont be enlarged. This shows that when the cause occurs the effect doesnot occur. So it is a Contender.
E) The fish that guillemots eat are currently preyed on by wider variety of predators in southernmost arctic regions than they are farther north.
=> This actually strengthens the argument. Because the fish is more abundant in the north. if the birds move to the north, they will surely enlarge their range.

D is the correct answer.

Hope it helps.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2015, 07:27
nonameee wrote:
I understand (D) perfectly. But can someone please explain why fish under the ice will disappear because of melting ice?


We have to assume that fish needs ice in order to survive. But that's just another assumption.


I've eliminated D too, because the argument deliveres no further information whether it's good or bad if ice dissapears.... which influence it has on the fishes.. would be there more fishes or less etc.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 02 May 2015, 21:48
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BrainLab wrote:
nonameee wrote:
I understand (D) perfectly. But can someone please explain why fish under the ice will disappear because of melting ice?


We have to assume that fish needs ice in order to survive. But that's just another assumption.


I've eliminated D too, because the argument deliveres no further information whether it's good or bad if ice dissapears.... which influence it has on the fishes.. would be there more fishes or less etc.


Hi BrainLab,

Glad you raised the idea of certainty about the need for ice. The idea that Guillemots rely on ice, to at least a significant extent, isn't assumed. Yes, Guillemots could possibly get SOME fish from other means as you point out, but the facts in the prompt let us know that Guillemots specifically feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice. So would it SIGNIFICANTLY weaken (though not necessarily 100% destroy) the claim that the Guillemot range is likely to expand if the ice sheets that they typically feed on melt? For sure. They wouldn't be likely to feed in those areas, so it would be VERY challenging for the range to expand.

Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice, and they nest on
nearby land. Guillemots need 80 consecutive snow-free days in a year to raise their chicks, so until average temperatures
in the Arctic began to rise recently, the guillemots’ range was limited to the southernmost Arctic coast. Therefore, if the
warming continues, the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast.
Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.


If option D were true, then it would STRONGLY put the Guillemots' source of food in doubt. Would that weaken the notion that the Guillemot range would expand? Yes.

(B) If the Arctic warming continues, Guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.

Now, option B) is the statistical runner up. B definitely represents a possible increased threat to Guillemots if predators further expand their territory, but to what extent do these predators pose a risk to the Guillemot population? It's altogether unclear. Perhaps the predators pose very little risk, and perhaps it's even a significant risk. Is there any way from the prompt to determine the degree of that risk that the predators pose? No. Predators could exist or always exist in Guillemot territory, but the species can coexist just fine.

In comparing B) and D), B) presents an ambiguous risk to the enlargement of the Guillemot range, whereas D) delivers a massive blow to that notion if the specific types of places where the species traditionally searches for food will likely be wiped out.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2017, 22:07
Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice, and they nest on nearby land. Guillemots need 80 consecutive snow-free days in a year to raise their chicks, so until average temperatures in the Arctic began to rise recently, the guillemots’ range was limited to the southernmost Arctic coast. Therefore, if the warming continues, the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

(A) Even if the warming trend continues, there will still be years in which guillemot chicks are killed by an unusually early snow.
OUT OF SCOPE- IF WARMING CONTINUES=> UNUSUAL EARLY SNOW??
(B) If the Arctic warming continues, guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.
PREDATORS ARE SAME AS THEY WERE IN SOUTHERN MOST PART SO HUNTING RATE WILL NOT BE EFFECTED.
(C) Guillemots nest in coastal areas, where temperatures are generally higher than in inland areas.
YES IT IS STRENGTHEN ANS=> THEY WILL NOT GO TO INLAND AND WILL REMAIN ALONG THE COAST => STRENGTHENS
(D) If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.
BINGO=> IF THE WARMING CONTINUES AND ICE MELTS => THEN THE WILL THAT USED TO GATHER BENEATH THIN LAYER WILL NOT BE THERE ANYMORE => FOOD SOURCE WILL BE OVER => IMPLYING END OF HABITAT AND => WEAKENING THE ANSWER.
(E) The fish that guillemots eat are currently preyed on by a wider variety of predators in the southernmost Arctic regions than they are farther north.
IT MEANS FISH WILL BE IN MORE QUANTITY IN NORTHERN PART SO STRENGTHENS.



ALSO IF YOU NEGATE THE OPTION D=> IF MORE WARMING AND THEN ICE WILL NOT DISAPPEAR => IT MEANS THEY WILL STILL GET MORE FISH => MEANS THEY CAN GO TO NORTH WITHOUT FOOD PROBLEM
SINCE FISH IS THE ONLY SOURCE. THEREBY NEGATION IS STRENGTHENING THE QUES => ITS A WEAKEN ANSWER.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Oct 2017, 16:12
My issue with (D): what if, in spite of the thin ice in the southern Arctic disappearing, the guilletmots' range expands so far up north that the loss of thin ice in the south Arctic is insignificant?

the way i see it, there are a few possible ways to decrease the # of guillemots: 1) increase # of predators; 2) decrease food supply. i don't see how 1 can be preferred over the other. they're equally dangerous.

please help
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Oct 2017, 09:42
LakerFan24 wrote:
My issue with (D): what if, in spite of the thin ice in the southern Arctic disappearing, the guilletmots' range expands so far up north that the loss of thin ice in the south Arctic is insignificant?

the way i see it, there are a few possible ways to decrease the # of guillemots: 1) increase # of predators; 2) decrease food supply. i don't see how 1 can be preferred over the other. they're equally dangerous.

please help

The point of the argument is that "the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged." We're not concerned with decreasing the number of guillemots, only the size of their range. The author's reasoning is that their range will expand as the bird moves northward.

The author assumes that the bird will only add to its range as it moves northward. Choice (D) suggests that the northward expansion will come with a decrease in the range along the southern coast. Although this doesn't necessarily disprove the author's point, it's seriously weakens the argument and is thus the best answer.
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Re: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Nov 2017, 03:12
Now this one's a tricky question. Answer D.

Let me attempt this:

Conclusion of the argument : If the warming continues, the guillemots’ range will probably be enlarged by being extended northward along the coast.

Now since we have to weaken this conclusion, we have to try proving either of the following things:
1. The overall Guillemont's population will not enlarge (i.e. will remain same or decrease) when they extend northwards along the coast, OR
2. The Guillemonts will not be able to extend northwards along the coast altogether

Now, let's the consider the supporting premises which are necessary for the Guillemont's survival:
1. fish that gather beneath thin sheets of floating ice
2. 80 consecutive snowfree days

Having considered the premises and the conclusion lets weigh the options B and D:

Option B : If the Arctic warming continues, guillemots’ current predators are likely to succeed in extending their own range farther north.
The way this option has been worded (emphasis on current predators) makes us believe that Guillemots even before extending to North have predators in the current habitat i.e. along the south coast. And the Guillemots have been been surviving in the south in spite of the presence of predators and hence they will extend and survive in the north even if their predators extend in the north.

Option D : If the Arctic warming continues, much of the thin ice in the southern Arctic will disappear.
This option tells us that the Guillemot's survival is directly affected by the thinning of the ice and in turn the food that they feed on. And hence the extension of the birds to the North will not enlarge their numbers but will infact will remain same(or probably decrease?) as there is no food for them in the south.

Hence Option D.
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Re: QOTD: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jan 2018, 07:33
+1 for option D. My take:

This is a weaken type question.

The conclusion is - "As the temperature increases because of global warming, the guillemots’ range will probably increase ".

The premise on which this conclusion is based upon :

1) Guillemots feed on fish just below thin ice.
2) Guillemots need 80 consecutive snow free days to lay their eggs

Pre-think/Logical Gap:

What if rising temperatures manifested into loss of food or habitat ?

POE

Option a : So what, does it talk about range ? No - Out
Option b : Predators might increase their range, so do guillemot. Is the argument weakened ? No - Out
Option c : Irrelevant
Option d : This is in line with our pre thinking. The rise in temperature causes loss of food , resulting in a decrease in range
Option e : This does the opposite in fact.

The answer is option D.
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Re: QOTD: Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions &nbs [#permalink] 10 Jan 2018, 07:33
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Guillemots are birds of Arctic regions. They feed on fish that gather

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