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The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with

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The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jan 2019, 03:00
We can logically deduce that 'it' in the second independent clause refers to 'gyrfalcon' in the first independent clause.

By surviving a brush with extinction, you'd expect the population (in this case, 'numbers') of a species to increase. How could 'it' be referring to the numbers or statistics of 'extinction' and in this case, greater likelihood of extinction?

'It' would therefore only refer to gyrfalcon, which means there shouldn't be any issue or ambiguity about using 'it' with a LOGICAL and singular antecedent. The rest of the other points of elimination e.g. greater than vs. much, has been expounded on by the other experts.
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New post 06 Mar 2019, 12:53
#A reads to me like we are comparing numbers to a time period.

"it's numbers... greater than" "when"
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New post 10 Mar 2019, 03:35
B is wrong because it uses ‘more than’, while comparing numbers. Greater than is better in this regard, so A would be the superior choice.

C is wrong because it uses plural pronoun ‘their’ to refer to a singular noun. In D ‘their’ does not have a clear referent. E is much like A but wordier. Again, like B that makes it the inferior choice.



A is the best option.
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New post 14 Mar 2019, 22:12
Hello Experts daagh , GMATNinja ,
I have a small query here:
Will the placement of now matter in the sentence?

Statement 1:
now its numbers are five times greater than when they werewhen the use of DDT was sharply restricted in the early 1970's.

Statement 2:
its numbers are now five times greater than when the use of DDT was sharply restricted in the early 1970's.

Is there any difference in statement 1 and statement 2?
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Re: The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Mar 2019, 01:51
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rish2708 wrote:
Hello Experts daagh , GMATNinja ,
I have a small query here:
Will the placement of now matter in the sentence?

Statement 1:
now its numbers are five times greater than when they werewhen the use of DDT was sharply restricted in the early 1970's.

Statement 2:
its numbers are now five times greater than when the use of DDT was sharply restricted in the early 1970's.

Is there any difference in statement 1 and statement 2?
Although I prefer the second one, I don't think it'll make much of a difference, as the meaning is clear either way.

Now the company's profits are five times greater than they were two years ago.
The company's profits are now five times greater than they were two years ago.

This is assuming that we are not looking at any alternate meanings of now. Otherwise, we could say something like this:
Now, the company's profits are five times greater than they were two years ago. Here the now could be used to emphasize whatever comes after it.
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Re: The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Mar 2019, 06:57
daagh wrote:
The subject is gyrfalcon, a singular. So their numbers in C and they in D are wrong, not withstanding the grammar of using the comma itself in these cases. In addition five folds are not the same as five times greater. Five folds are 5x (original x + four folds) while five times greater is 6x (original x+ five times). This subtle point adds a significant alteration to the intent.


In E, the intent is altered by using the preposition with, as if the bird of prey has survived the close brush with extinction because of the five fold numbers now. On the contrary the original passage implies that five time greater number is the result of the survival rather than the cause of the survival.


B is dumped for using the inappropriate comparison term more to denote a countable plural subject numbers.

This leaves the original one as the right choice, which uses the correct description greater than for the countable plural subject of numbers.

If somebody claims Answer is E, I am bound to repudiate.



I struggled btwn A and E , I understood why E is wrong. but I still dont understand in A if it ends with "Than" should be completed with some comparison phrase.
((Number greater than when..)) sounds very awkward.
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Re: The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Mar 2019, 21:28
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Mohammad Ali Khan wrote:
I struggled btwn A and E , I understood why E is wrong. but I still dont understand in A if it ends with "Than" should be completed with some comparison phrase.
((Number greater than when..)) sounds very awkward.
What's happening here is that some words are not being mentioned explicitly in that sentence. Here are a couple of other examples to help you see this:

1. You're taller than when I last saw you.
is the same as
You're taller than you were when I last saw you.

2. Students solve questions more quickly at home than when they are at a test center.
is the same as
Students solve questions more quickly at home than they do when they are at a test center.

Similarly,
Its numbers are now five times greater than when the use of DDT was sharply restricted.
is the same as
Its numbers are now five times greater than they were when the use of DDT was sharply restricted.
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New post 19 Mar 2019, 07:18
GMATNinja wrote:
I kinda hate this question. And I swear that I’m basically a very happy person. ;)

Quote:
(A) extinction; its numbers are now five times greater than

Two things jump out at me right away in (A), and neither of them are a problem. First, the semicolon needs to separate two independent clauses, and it does exactly that. Second, the “its” needs to refer back to a singular noun, and it does exactly that – “its” refers to “the gyrfalcon.”

So I wouldn't eliminate (A) right away. But it is awfully similar to (B), so let’s put them side-by-side:
Quote:
(A) extinction; its numbers are now five times greater than
(B) extinction; its numbers are now five times more than

The only difference is that (A) uses the phrase “greater than”, and (B) uses “more than.” In real life, I don’t think that either of these necessarily sounds better than the other, and I probably wouldn't notice if somebody said the incorrect version.

Here’s the thing: if you’re comparing numbers themselves – not quantity in general, but actual numbers – it’s generally better to use “greater than” instead of “more than.” For example, you would read the mathematical expression 20 > 10 as “twenty is greater than ten.”

Or you consider the following two sentences:
  • I ate more burritos than Mike last night. → we’re comparing quantities of burritos in general, not the numbers themselves, so “more” is OK
  • I ate a greater number of burritos than Mike last night. → now that we’re comparing the numbers, we need to use “greater”
  • I ate a more number of burritos than Mike last night. → not remotely tempting to use “more” to compare the numbers themselves in this case, right?

Back to the GMAT question. Since we’re directly and literally comparing the numbers themselves, we need to use “greater than”, and not “more than”.

So we can eliminate (B), and hang onto (A).

Quote:
(C) extinction, their numbers now fivefold what they were

Hopefully, the pronouns jump right off the page at you. “Their” needs to refer to a plural noun, and… well, we don’t have any plurals earlier in the sentence. “The gyrfalcon” is singular.

So (C) is out.

Quote:
(D) extinction, now with fivefold the numbers they had

(D) has a similar problem as (C): there’s some general awkwardness, but the much more important issue is that “they” doesn’t have a logical referent. The only plural noun earlier in the sentence is “the numbers”, and that definitely wouldn’t work: “… now with fivefold the numbers the numbers had…” Yikes. Of course, “they” is logically trying to refer to “the gyrfalcon”, and that’s singular.

So (D) is gone, too.

Quote:
(E) extinction; its numbers are now five times greater than what they were

(E) is just a crappier version of (A). The only real difference is that (E) adds the phrase “what they were” to the end of the sentence, and there’s no good reason to do that – it adds nothing to the meaning, and just makes the sentence wordier and messier.

We can eliminate (E), and (A) is the best we can do.


thank you, i just had the same doubt, between more than , less than..and my eyes went to semi colon separating two independent clauses
i shall remember it that we compare numbers(literally or mathetically) we use greater than less than, else we use more than less than, in general
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Re: The gyrfalcon, an Arctic bird of prey, has survived a close brush with   [#permalink] 19 Mar 2019, 07:18

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