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# In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists

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In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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05 Oct 2010, 10:01
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In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists studying bird populations have observed a drop in the number of both herring gulls and terns. Both bird species prey on the same type of fish, whose numbers are also being negatively affected by pollution. However, the tern population has seen a much sharper decrease than the herring gull population. Scientists have concluded that the herring gulls have a higher survival rate because they are able to find alternative sources of food, including garbage dumps along the shoreline.

Which of the following, if true, would provide the best piece of evidence in support of the researchers’ conclusion?

* A survey shows that bird populations in areas around the Great Lakes have shown similar decreases.
* A related study finds that fish populations in the Great Lakes are affected as much by other predators as by pollution.
* Maps of the area reveal that the largest garbage dump in the area is located 3 miles inland from the lake.
* Blood tests performed on the gulls reveal high levels of the types of fatty acids generally found only in human food.
* Analysis of water in the area where the birds nest reveals that toxin levels are actually slightly below fish tolerance levels.

Why can't C be the best answer ?
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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05 Oct 2010, 10:29
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Conclusion: herring gulls have a higher survival rate because they are able to find alternative sources of food, including garbage dumps along the shoreline.
==>So need to prove herring gulls eat food from garbage dumps.

* A survey shows that bird populations in areas around the Great Lakes have shown similar decreases.
>> Does not talk abour herring gulls.
* A related study finds that fish populations in the Great Lakes are affected as much by other predators as by pollution.
>> Not related to conclusion.
* Maps of the area reveal that the largest garbage dump in the area is located 3 miles inland from the lake.
>> This does not necessarily mean that herring gulls feed on garbage dumps.
* Blood tests performed on the gulls reveal high levels of the types of fatty acids generally found only in human food.
>> Yes. So if the gulls have high levels of fatty acids generally found in human food, means they feed on the garbage dumps that have human food wastes.
* Analysis of water in the area where the birds nest reveals that toxin levels are actually slightly below fish tolerance levels.
>> Not related.
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05 Oct 2010, 11:24
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doesn't survival depend on, how far they go to find alternative sources food rather than alternative sources of food themselves. including garbage dumps along the shoreline. garbage dumps are including in the alternative sources of food not exactly one alternative source of food, they could feed on other decompose materials... on plants.... insects... etc....
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05 Oct 2010, 22:03
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D for me. But It took me close 2.5 minutes. I believe that "Scientists have concluded that the herring gulls have a higher survival rate because they are able to find alternative sources of food" points to the answer. Scientist concluded that gulls are able to find alternative sources of food. and the option D substantiates that.
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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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04 Jun 2015, 00:20
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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2016, 23:09
I have selected D but I agree that D is not perfect choice but better than C

C)Maps of the area reveal that the largest garbage dump in the area is located 3 miles inland from the lake.
Yes Hull birds could travel far in search of food and they could be eating food from garbage and is very possible for struggle for existence

D) Blood tests performed on the gulls reveal high levels of the types of fatty acids generally found only in human food.
If food is readily available in seashore than travelling far for 3 miles to get garbage food. Also this shows that may be humans are readily feeding birds with their food that. Means more content of human food which is considered garbage in terms of bird is available large in sea-shores.

So D is better than C but not a perfect answer. Hope it helped.

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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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02 Jan 2017, 20:12
I was confused between C and D. C can be eliminated on the fact that presence of Garbage dump doesn't mean that gulls are eating from it. But I am also not convinced that D is an answer as, nothing in the choice indicates that presence of fatty acid similar to humans, indicate gulls are eating from garbage dumps

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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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02 Jan 2017, 21:22
ankujgupta wrote:
I was confused between C and D. C can be eliminated on the fact that presence of Garbage dump doesn't mean that gulls are eating from it. But I am also not convinced that D is an answer as, nothing in the choice indicates that presence of fatty acid similar to humans, indicate gulls are eating from garbage dumps

Option D confirms that the gulls have an alternative source of nutrition. Therefore it supports the scientists' conclusion that "the herring gulls have a higher survival rate because they are able to find alternative sources of food". The part "including garbage dumps along the shoreline" need not be used for selecting option D (though the assumption that garbage dump contains human food is not illogical.)

[Moreover this is a strengthening type question, and hence the "must be true" condition need not be satisfied.]

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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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28 Aug 2017, 11:30
D shows a causal relation that supports the conclusion.
Any tips to read question, detect negative words, and interpret stem fast and accurate?

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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists [#permalink]

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28 Aug 2017, 16:39
I choose C, how can it be assume that garbage contains only human food waste.

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Re: In a polluted area around the Great Lakes, scientists   [#permalink] 28 Aug 2017, 16:39
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