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Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need

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Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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A
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Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.


(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to

(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing


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https://www.nytimes.com/1996/12/31/science/birds-that-nest-in-the-grasslands-find-their-habitats-under-siege.html

But like the grassy fields and old pastures that the bird needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering on the Argentine pampas, the upland sandpiper is vanishing from the Northeast as a result of changes in farming practices, the return of abandoned agricultural land to forest, and residential and industrial development.

Originally posted by marine on 21 Sep 2004, 03:07.
Last edited by Bunuel on 22 Oct 2018, 23:08, edited 6 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Nov 2017, 13:27
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The GMAT usually doesn't get poetic like this, and it’s one of the very few metaphors I’ve ever seen on official SC questions. Like any other GMAT SC question that uses “like”, we need two nouns that are logically comparable – and the tricky part here is deciding which of the metaphorical comparisons is actually “logically comparable.”

We covered some similar issues in our YouTube webinar on comparisons, so head on over there if you prefer your explanations in video form.

Quote:
(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

The comparison here is shaky, but I’m not 100% sure that it’s absolutely wrong. Is there any reason why we can’t compare “the grassy field and old pastures” with “the sandpipers”, since both are vanishing? I guess not. So we can tolerate the comparison, even though there are better versions below.

The bigger problem: “the sandpipers vanishing… is a result…” The sandpipers (plural!) are the subject; vanishing is just an adjective. So the subject-verb agreement is wrong here. (If you think this “sounds OK”, you’re not wrong. The subject-verb agreement would be OK if “sandpipers” was possessive, because then “vanishing” would be the subject. But that’s not what’s actually happening here.)

So (A) is out.

Quote:
(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

Not bad, the comparison is clarified somewhat by the use of “the bird itself”: that phrase is nicely comparable to “the grassy fields and old pastures”, since both are disappearing.

The parallelism also works well later in the sentence: “the bird itself is vanishing… as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in….” That’s great: the bird is vanishing as a result of X and of Y. Keep (B).

Quote:
(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to

This isn’t a total disaster, but it’s not great, either. “Like the grassy fields and old pastures…, that the birds themselves are vanishing... is due to… development and changes…” In this particular use of “that”, the word basically means “the fact that.” So we’re literally comparing “the grassy fields and old pastures” to “the fact that the birds are vanishing.”

That doesn’t make any sense at all: we could compare the fields and pastures to the birds, and then say that all three of those things are vanishing. But we can’t compare the fields and pastures to the fact that the birds are vanishing.

So we can eliminate (C), too.

Quote:
(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in

A lot of this is pretty clunky, but the real problem is that the grassy fields and old pastures are compared to “sandpipers’ vanishing.” And that doesn’t make sense: we’re literally comparing fields and pastures to “vanishing” – and not to the sandpipers themselves.

Plus, (D) doesn’t actually have an independent clause, which means that it isn’t a proper sentence. So (D) is gone.

Quote:
(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing

(E) has exactly the same issues as (D): the comparison is nonsense, and the sentence isn’t actually a real sentence, since it lacks an independent clause. So (B) is the best we can do.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2012, 06:08
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Hi,

Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

Image

The sentence says that the reasons for the disappearance of grassy fields and old pastures and sandpipers in the northeastern US are the same – residential and industrial development and changes in farming practices. By the way, the upland sandpipers need the grassy fields and old pastures for nesting and breeding when they return in May after spending winter in the Argentine Pampas.

Image

Error Analysis


1. Presence of “Like” tells us that there is a comparison here. The meaning tells us that the sentence compares the vanishing of grassy fields and old pastures with that of sandpipers. Now, “Like” is followed by “grassy fields and old pastures” that have been illogically compared with “the sandpipers vanishing”. Since “grassy fields and old pastures” are in the non-underlined portion of the sentence, we need “sandpipers” or “the bird” as the subject of the main clause to make the comparison logical.
2. The sentence uses the phrase “sandpipers vanishing”. Notice that there is no apostrophe after sandpipers. Hence, “sandpipers” is a plural noun now and “vanishing” is the modifier that modifies “sandpipers”. Now plural “sandpipers” does not agree in number with singular verb “is”.

POE:

Choice A: the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Incorrect for the reasons stated above.

Choice B: the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Correct. “the bird” has now been correctly compared with “the grassy fields and old pastures”.

Choice C: that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to: Incorrect. 1. Use of “that” is incorrect. 2. The phrase “changes to farming practices” is awkward.

Choice D: in the northeastern United States, sandpipers’ vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in: Incorrect. 1. The modifier “in the northeastern US” should not be at the beginning of the main clause. 2. The comparison is now illogically between the “the grassy fields and old pastures” and “sandpipers’ vanishing”. 3. There is no verb for “sandpipers’ vanishing”. So we have a fragment and not a main clause. 4. We don’t need “to” before “changes in…”.

Choice E: in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers’ vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing: Incorrect. 1. Same modifier error as in Choice D. 2. Same fragment error as in Choice D.

Image

1. The entities compared in the sentence must be grammatically as well as logically parallel.
2. We must have a subject and a verb to form a clause. Absence of any one makes the sentence a fragment.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
Shraddha
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Oct 2005, 12:43
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It's from the OG 11th edition diagnostic test

The OE is as follows:

The comparison introduced by like must be logical and clear; the point of this comparison is that both the habitat and the bird are disappearing for similar reasons. The comparison must use comparable grammatical components; the bird itself is a noun and matches the noun phrases grassy fields and old pastures.

B - This sentence properly compares the bird itself to grassy fields and old pastures; is vanishing as the verb strenghtens the sentence by making the comparison clearer.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2012, 19:56
egmat wrote:
Hi,

Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

Image

The sentence says that the reasons for the disappearance of grassy fields and old pastures and sandpipers in the northeastern US are the same – residential and industrial development and changes in farming practices. By the way, the upland sandpipers need the grassy fields and old pastures for nesting and breeding when they return in May after spending winter in the Argentine Pampas.

Image

Error Analysis


1. Presence of “Like” tells us that there is a comparison here. The meaning tells us that the sentence compares the vanishing of grassy fields and old pastures with that of sandpipers. Now, “Like” is followed by “grassy fields and old pastures” that have been illogically compared with “the sandpipers vanishing”. Since “grassy fields and old pastures” are in the non-underlined portion of the sentence, we need “sandpipers” or “the bird” as the subject of the main clause to make the comparison logical.
2. The sentence uses the phrase “sandpipers vanishing”. Notice that there is no apostrophe after sandpipers. Hence, “sandpipers” is a plural noun now and “vanishing” is the modifier that modifies “sandpipers”. Now plural “sandpipers” does not agree in number with singular verb “is”.

POE:

Choice A: the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Incorrect for the reasons stated above.

Choice B: the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Correct. “the bird” has now been correctly compared with “the grassy fields and old pastures”.

Choice C: that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to: Incorrect. 1. Use of “that” is incorrect. 2. The phrase “changes to farming practices” is awkward.

Choice D: in the northeastern United States, sandpipers’ vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in: Incorrect. 1. The modifier “in the northeastern US” should not be at the beginning of the main clause. 2. The comparison is now illogically between the “the grassy fields and old pastures” and “sandpipers’ vanishing”. 3. There is no verb for “sandpipers’ vanishing”. So we have a fragment and not a main clause. 4. We don’t need “to” before “changes in…”.

Choice E: in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers’ vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing: Incorrect. 1. Same modifier error as in Choice D. 2. Same fragment error as in Choice D.

Image

1. The entities compared in the sentence must be grammatically as well as logically parallel.
2. We must have a subject and a verb to form a clause. Absence of any one makes the sentence a fragment.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
Shraddha


In A, is 'sandpipers vanishing' not a gerund? and if yes, it can be parallel to 'grassy fields and old pastures'.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Nov 2012, 07:05
Sachin9 wrote:
In A, is 'sandpipers vanishing' not a gerund? and if yes, it can be parallel to 'grassy fields and old pastures'.


Hi Sachin,

In A, “sandpipers vanishing” is not a gerund. “Vanishing” is a verb-ing modifier that presents a characteristic of sandpipers that they are vanishing. Use of “vanishing” is incorrect here. It has been used to function as a gerund but it is not functioning as one.

“Sandpipers” is parallel to “grassy fields…” but again we have the SV number agreement as well as make sense issue. Look at the structure here:

…, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United Statesis a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

Here it does not make sense to say that “sandpipers” is a result of residential… Hence, this choice is incorrect.











Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Dec 2012, 15:59
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2
Hi All,

Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and ochanges in farming practices.

Meaning Analysis:

This sentence presents comparison. It compares the grassy fields and old pastures and the sandpipers. Both have been compared because both are disappearing in the northeastern United States because of residential and industrial development and changes in farming practices.

Error Analysis:

Verb-ing modifier “vanishing…” is placed next to “the sandpipers” without a comma before it. Hence, it modifies “the sandpipers”. But that’s just the modifier. The core of the sentence says “The sandpipers … is a result of…” Here the SV do not agree in number and also do not make sense with each other.

PoE:

A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Incorrect for the reason stated above.

(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in: Correct.

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to: Incorrect.
1. This choice presents illogical comparison. “the grassy fields and old pastures” have been compared to “that”
2. Use of preposition “to” is not correct.

(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers’ vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in: Incorrect.
1. This choice presents illogical comparison. “the grassy fields and old pastures” have been compared to “sandpipers’ vanishing”.
2. There is no verb in this sentence. It is fragment.

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers’ vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing: Incorrect.
1. This choice presents illogical comparison. “the grassy fields and old pastures” have been compared to “sandpipers’ vanishing”.
2. There is no verb in this sentence. It is fragment.

This sentence tests the concepts of idiom - comparison, modifier, and SV agreement.
At e-gmat, we cover all these concepts in great details with many practice questions. Also the Verb-ing modifier can be learnt just be registering at e-gmat.com for free. This concepts, with many others, feature in pur free concepts Level 1 Preview Level.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
Shraddha
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 19 May 2017, 22:06
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The Official Guide for GMAT Review 2017

Practice Question
Question No.: Diagnostic Test Verbal 85
Page: 93

Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

A. the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States IS a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in
B. the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in
C. that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to
D. in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing is due to residential and industrial development and to changes in
E. in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing

Excerpt from Manhattan Sentence Correction

RESULT

RIGHT:

Wealth RESULTS FROM work.
Work RESULTS IN wealth.
Wealth IS A RESULT OF work.
Wealth grows AS A RESULT OF work.
AS A RESULT OF our work, our wealth grew.
The RESULT OF our work WAS THAT our wealth grew.

WRONG:

We worked WITH THE RESULT OF wealth.
We worked WITH A RESULTING growth of wealth.
RESULTING FROM our work, our wealth grew.
BECAUSE OF THE RESULT OF our work, our wealth grew.
The RESULT OF our work WAS our wealth grew. (THAT is needed.)
The growth of wealth RESULTS.

From Ron (Manhattan Prep)

(a)
If you write "the sandpipers vanishing", then "sandpipers" is the subject ("vanishing" is a modifier describing that subject). The subject "sandpipers " doesn't agree with the singular verb "is".

GENERAL NOTE:
This sentence starts out with "like the grassy fields and old pastures...". The COMPARISON here is between those fields and pastures (which are disappearing) and the bird (which is also disappearing); therefore, to make this comparison valid, the next sentence MUST start with "the bird" or "the sandpiper". It can't start with anything else.

(c)
Invalid comparison; this clause starts with "that the birds are vanishing...", rather than with the bird itself.
This choice is also hopelessly awkward, although it may take a native speaker's eye to see that.

(d)
Invalid comparison; the subject here is the sandpipers' vanishing, rather than the sandpiper itself.
"in the NE united states" is also inserted in a bad place; the comparison element should come at the head of this construction.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jul 2017, 02:17
Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

This is a COMPARISON question.

(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

- "the sandpipers vanishing" is compared "the grassy fields and old pastures" - illogical comparison
- "sandpipers" - is plural and should be followed by a plural noun "are" and not "is"


(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

- Correct - The Noun "the bird itself" is compared with "the grassy fields and old pastures". As the question starts with Like, we should having a Noun Vs. Noun comparison.

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to

- Invalid comparison "that the birds themselves" with "the grassy fields and old pastures"

(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in

- Illogical comparison between "sandpipers' vanishing" to "the grassy fields and old pastures"

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing

- Illogical comparison between "sandpipers' vanishing" to "the grassy fields and old pastures"

Hence, Answer is B

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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Sep 2017, 10:53
Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in
- "sandpipers vanishing" = incorrect. "sandpipers vanish" or "the sandpipers are vanishing"

(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in
- correct as is

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to
- "that the birds ..." = incorrect. also, "birds" should be "bird" to be // to "upland sandpiper" which is not underlined. also, "changes to" should be "changes in", changes meaning of sentence

(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in
- same as "A"

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing
- same as "A"

key idea here is "sandpipers vanishing" makes no sense. need a helping verb "is/are", and since "the upland sandpiper" is NOT underlined, you're kind of guided to the idea that you need a singular helping verb/verb to form an agreement.

Kudos please if you find this helpful :)
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Sep 2017, 19:02
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Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.


(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in--- wrong because we are comparing a noun 'fields' with a participle sandpipers 'vanishing'; Vanishing here is a present participle and not a gerund as many might be tempted to believe.


(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in -- The comparison is correct here with a noun-to-noun

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to -- The prepositional modifier starting with 'like' should modify the noun 'bird' after the comma. The intrusion of 'that' renders the modification faulty.

(D) In the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in --- an outright fragment

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing-- yet another fragment as in D
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Nov 2017, 20:31
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Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper needs for feeding and nesting when it returns in May after wintering in the Argentine Pampas, the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in farming practices.

A out because : (1) S-V agreement, "the sandpipers" is plural then usage of verb "is" is wrong; (2) meaning: "the sandpipers" cannot be "result of..." since vanishing aren't acting like a gerund.
C, D and E out because of wrong grammatical construction.

Hence B correct.

(A) the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in

(B) the bird itself is vanishing in the northeastern United States as a result of residential and industrial development and of changes in - Correct

(C) that the birds themselves are vanishing in the northeastern United States is due to residential and industrial development and changes to

(D) in the northeastern United States, sandpipers' vanishing due to residential and industrial development and to changes in

(E) in the northeastern United States, the sandpipers' vanishing, a result of residential and industrial development and changing

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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Nov 2017, 06:57
I don't get it! Why can't "vanishing" act as gerund here and make -through the use of "is"- SV thus correct?
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 20:32
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drexxie wrote:
I don't get it! Why can't "vanishing" act as gerund here and make -through the use of "is"- SV thus correct?

In (D), "vanishing" does act as a gerund, so the subject-verb agreement is fine -- but the comparison doesn't make sense, as described here: https://gmatclub.com/forum/qotd-like-th ... l#p1956891

In (A), the construction is a little bit different: "Like the grassy fields and old pastures...., the sandpipers vanishing in the northeastern United States is a result of..." I suppose you could argue that "vanishing" is the subject, but then what is "sandpipers" doing there? For "vanishing" to become the subject, "sandpipers" would need to be possessive, and that would require an apostrophe. And even if "vanishing" is the subject in (A), the comparison doesn't make sense: we're not comparing the grassy fields and old pastures to the act of vanishing.

I hope this helps!
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Apr 2018, 22:45
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Can we eliminate (C) and (D) relatively quick on the basis of "due to"?
I learned that "due to" is followed by a subject/a noun and cannot be followed by a clause.
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2018, 13:02
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lary301254M7 wrote:
GMATNinja
Can we eliminate (C) and (D) relatively quick on the basis of "due to"?
I learned that "due to" is followed by a subject/a noun and cannot be followed by a clause.

The important thing to know about "due to" is that the phrase "due to ________" must modify a noun, and not a verb or verb phrase. It's a little bit rough around the edges, but there's a lengthy Q&A session about "due to" in this post: https://gmatclub.com/forum/verbal-chat- ... l#p1883212. Check that out, and see if it answers your question?

Tridhipal wrote:
We generally compare only apples with apples and oranges with oranges in comparison. So how can grassy fields and old pastures {which are related to grass) can be compared with the bird?

This is a rare case in which the comparison is somewhat metaphorical, and that can be perfectly acceptable. Check out the full explanation here, especially the part under answer choice (B).

I hope this helps!
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Nov 2018, 10:26
Had to reread, but going with "B"
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Re: Like the grassy fields and old pastures that the upland sandpiper need &nbs [#permalink] 07 Nov 2018, 10:26
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