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# The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high

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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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josepiusn, it's very dangerous to pull out a few words from a sentence and say that they sound awkward. While this can occasionally help us to find portions with errors, if we can't name an actual error, we should defer judgment and try to find another way to eliminate.

In this case, "could well list" is just fine. "Could well" is just a modifier saying that something very well may happen. In this case, what very well may happen? The service may list the frog as endangered. Here are a few uses of this idiom:

This book is so exciting that it could well become a best-seller.
The criminals were nervous, figuring that the new recruit could well turn out to be an undercover officer.
Another Supreme Court justice could well retire before the next president takes office.
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
stevegt wrote:
The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high reaches of the Sierra Nevada has become severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it as an endangered species in the near future.

(A) severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it
(B) severe enough so that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list them
(C) severe enough for it quite possibly to be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service
(D) so severe that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list it
(E) so severe that they could well be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service

this is official question, so we should study it carefully.

i think we can see the pattern in choice A in formal english in newspaper. but the fact that A is wrong suggest that this pattern in choice A is not acceptable in gmat land. we have to take patern in choice D instead.

do you agree with me?
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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Top Contributor
Quote:
The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high reaches of the Sierra Nevada has become severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it as an endangered species in the near future.

'Severe' is an adjective, and 'enough' ( meaning sufficient) is also an adjective; While 'severe' modifies the noun 'decline,' 'enough' modifies 'severe.' An adjective modifying another adjective is technically incorrect. Second, in A, the decline seems to be severing for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and not in general.
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
What "it" in A modify decline or frog??
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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AbhishekDhanraJ72 wrote:
What "it" in A modify decline or frog??

Hi Abhishek

Let us put the "it" in the context in which it appears. Reading on, we are told:

...list it as an endangered species...

Clearly, from a logical consistency perspective, "it" being referred to here must refer to a "species", since as per the sentence, "it" could be listed as an endangered "species". From among the possibilities that appear in the sentence earlier, "it" could only refer to the "yellow-legged frog".

"It" here cannot refer to "decline" since "decline" cannot be listed as an endangered species.

Hope this clarifies.
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
soneone already have explained the difference between "enough to" and "so... that"
the first mean something goes beyond a definite level
the latter means something reached a definite level

the correct meaning is decline reaches a definite level but not pass a definite level.
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
KarishmaB GMATNinja

I really wanted to go with D because it seemed like the absolute correct answer, but I eventually did not go with it because if felt the D (and E) brought in new information, saying "SO severe". I have always learned that we cannot change the meaning of the original sentence.

My question for you guys is what do we do in situations exactly like in this question, when the correct answer (D) might be misleading because it brings in new information that was not stated in the sentence (no one said it was SO severe) yet it really looks and feels like the right answer?

The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high reaches of the Sierra Nevada has become severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it as an endangered species in the near future.

(A) severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it
(B) severe enough so that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list them
(C) severe enough for it quite possibly to be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service
(D) so severe that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list it
(E) so severe that they could well be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service

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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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HWPO wrote:
KarishmaB GMATNinja

I really wanted to go with D because it seemed like the absolute correct answer, but I eventually did not go with it because if felt the D (and E) brought in new information, saying "SO severe". I have always learned that we cannot change the meaning of the original sentence.

My question for you guys is what do we do in situations exactly like in this question, when the correct answer (D) might be misleading because it brings in new information that was not stated in the sentence (no one said it was SO severe) yet it really looks and feels like the right answer?

The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high reaches of the Sierra Nevada has become severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it as an endangered species in the near future.

(A) severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it
(B) severe enough so that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list them
(C) severe enough for it quite possibly to be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service
(D) so severe that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list it
(E) so severe that they could well be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service

HWPO - There is no reason to think that option (A) is the "original meaning" and if another gives something slightly different, the meaning has changed. Option (A) is just one of the options and has a 20% chance of being correct. There is absolutely nothing special about option (A). There will be one best sentence with meaning that makes sense. That is your answer.

Also "severe enough for" and "so severe that" are similar in meaning. They both give the degree of severity. How severe is it...
"Enough" may "feel" mild and "so severe" may "feel" extremely severe but objectively speaking, they both give the degree of severity = "severe enough for A" or "so severe that A should happen".
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The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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HWPO wrote:
I really wanted to go with D because it seemed like the absolute correct answer, but I eventually did not go with it because if felt the D (and E) brought in new information, saying "SO severe". I have always learned that we cannot change the meaning of the original sentence.

As KarishmaB has already mentioned, so severe isn't really changing the meaning of the original sentence, at least not substantially.

In fact, this pattern is so common (not common enough ) on GMAT that you might want to just remember that "so + adjective" is almost always preferable to "adjective + enough". You might want to refer to example-1, example-2, and example-3.
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
HWPO wrote:
KarishmaB GMATNinja

I really wanted to go with D because it seemed like the absolute correct answer, but I eventually did not go with it because if felt the D (and E) brought in new information, saying "SO severe". I have always learned that we cannot change the meaning of the original sentence.

My question for you guys is what do we do in situations exactly like in this question, when the correct answer (D) might be misleading because it brings in new information that was not stated in the sentence (no one said it was SO severe) yet it really looks and feels like the right answer?

The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high reaches of the Sierra Nevada has become severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it as an endangered species in the near future.

(A) severe enough for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service quite possibly to list it
(B) severe enough so that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list them
(C) severe enough for it quite possibly to be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service
(D) so severe that the United States Fish and Wildlife Service could well list it
(E) so severe that they could well be listed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service

Hello HWPO,

We hope this finds you well.

To answer your query, this sentence is meant to convey a cause-effect relationship between the severity of the frog's decline and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service possibly listing it as an endangered species in the near future, so the answer choices that use "enough" are inferior. This is because “enough” is used to show “adequacy” and generally not used to show a cause-effect relationship; rather, “so + cause + that + effect” or “so + cause + as to + effect” are some of the preferred constructions for conveying a cause-effect relationship.

We hope this helps.
All the best!
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Re: The decline of the mountain yellow-legged frog in the high [#permalink]
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