Monday, March 8, 2010

Artificial Selection in Plants and Animals

Artificial selection is a type of selection in which the individuals of a species are chosen to ensure the presence or absence of certain traits. This selection is usually repeated in successive generations until those attributes approach in the descendents of offspring. Artifical selection is known as selective breeding or unnatural selection. It is a great principle to farmers and breeders because they can use it to change the traits of their plants and animals. This can satisfy their needs and makes their lives easier. Artificial selection is commonly used to produce new breeds from the variable offspring of hybrid crosses. It can be accelerated by techniques such as plant tissue culture and the artificial insemination of livestock. Artificial selection can greatly affect the lives of farmers and breeders when they choose the desirable traits for their plants and/or animals such as disease resistance and high crop yield in plants, and high production and new desirable traits in animals.

When an organism undergoes an advantageous change that is passed to successive generations, it is known as natural selection. Artificial selection was utilized by Charles Darwin to be contrasted with natural selection in which differential reproduction of organisms with certain traits is attributed to improved survival or reproductive ability (“Darwinian fitness”).

Using artificial selection, farmers and breeders choose desirable traits for their plants mainly the ones that are disease-resistant and high crop yield. Plant breeders start off with variable hybrid plants and then apply selection to produce new crops, trees, and flowers with desirable traits. Plants without any desirable trait is less likely to survive as they do not have fertilizers and pesticides. In fact, they will eventually evolutes.

The domestication of plants began with wheat, peas, and olives and dramatically increased the amount of food produced, which helped support human production growth. The seeds from wild plants were actively collected, planted and cultivated. As food was harvested, seeds from best plants were selected for the planting of subsequent crops.

Farmers have cultivated numerous crops from the wild mustard by artificially selecting them for certain attributes.

Source: http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/_0_0/evo_30

These vegetables were cultivated from wild mustard. This evolution came through artificial selection.

Source: http://www.gly.uga.edu/railsback/1122/Brassica2.jpeg

The dramatic results of artificial selection that can be seen in Brassica; six different vegetables – kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, kohlrabi, cabbage, and cauliflower. They all have the sea cabbage, Brassica oleracea as their single common ancestor.

Ontario has a large agricultural sector which produces a wide range of foods. Among Ontario’s most valuable food crops are vegetables such as tomatoes, carrots, onions, and potatoes; grains such as wheat, oats, and barley; corn (mostly for use as livestock feed); canola (for oil); soybeans; and fruits such as apples, pears, peaches, grapes, and strawberries.

Over many years of artificial selection, the frequency of desirable gene variants increases in the population.

Source: http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/news/070201_corn

This process has produced all of the major crop plants from their wild ancestors. By figuring this out, scientists are discovering clues about how to improve crops to change human needs. Most importantly, they would like to find out which gene variants were favored by ancient people (which genes were the targets of selection).

Using artificial selection, these plants have improved by quality. The one of the left was before artificial selection was used and the one on the right was after artificial selection.
 
 




Wild sunflowers Domestic sunflowers 






Wild tomatoes Domestic tomatoes
 
 
 
 





Teosinte plants Corn plants

Source: http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/news/070201_corn

With artificial selection in plants, plants can greatly improve by quality. Through artificial selection, the plants with the desired traits of each generation were selected to reproduce, creating the next generation. This was used by a technique (plant tissue culture) in which selected plants can be cloned and grown directly into new plants. These plants can cultivate vegetables, which are beneficial for farmers because they can sell it and make good money.

With artificial selection, animal characteristics can be changed by using a technique (artificial insemination of livestock). Farmers and breeders can change the characteristics of their animals by selecting for reproduction those individuals with the most desirable qualities such as speed in racehorses, milk production in cows, trail scenting in dogs.
 

Pigs are artificially selected to produce the largest amount of meat.

Source:http://library.thinkquest.org/C0118084/Gene/Genetic_variation/artificialselection.htm  

Source: http://www.windows.ucar.edu/tour/link=/cool_stuff/tour_evolution_7.html&br=gr

This picture shows how selecting for different traits of breeding has caused different dog breeds to have distinctive characteristics. (Dog breeds from left to right: top row- Alaskan Malamute, Basset Hound, Llasa Apsa; middle row- Beagle puppy, Shar Pei, Chow; bottom row- Pekinese, Tibetan Terrier, Pug.)

Breeding a male horse with excellent racing qualities with a healthy female horse so that the offspring will have the desired traits such as the racing qualities. Hens could be artificially selected to produce more eggs and cows can be artificially selected for a high milk production.

Advantages of Artificial Selection

  • It creates new desirable traits for plants and animals.
  • Animals can produce a lot of products (ex. pigs produce meat, hens produce eggs, and cows produce milk).
  • Farmers and breeders can attract a lot of consumers by selling their plants and the products produced by animals in their new desirable trait.
  • Artificial selection rules out weakness and disability.

    Disadvantages of Artificial Selection
  • If there is an environmental factor occurring on plants and animals that were domesticated through artificial selection, there will be a higher possibility of extinction.
  • With artificial selection, the society will be highly competitive.
  • This is very expensive so only wealthy farmers and breeders can afford it.
  • It is not according to God’s plan of creation.
  • It is inhumane so it can cause mutations or produce new problems.

In artificial selection, plants and animals can have their traits changed.to satisfy the needs of humans. Personally, I find artificial selection similar to genetic screening in designer babies that I did in my Unit 5 blog based on its facts, advantages, and disadvantages. The advantages of artificial selection include creating new desirable traits for plants and animals, animals producing a lot of products, farmers and breeders making good money, and also it gets rid of weakness and disability. Artificial selection gives farmers and breeders an opportunity to change the traits of their plants and animals. Based on my images that I showed about artificial selection in plants, they improved by quality and charcateristics such as disease-resistant and high crop yield. Animals can produce a lot of products. Pigs and produce the largest amount of meat and hens can produce a lot of eggs. There can be high milk production in cows and high speed in racehorses. On the other hand, there are disadvantages for artificial selection. From what I have learned from Unit 2 SBI 3U1, biodiversity is important to ensure survival. So if we completely create plants and animals with desirable traits and an environmental factors occurs, there will be a higher possibility of extinction but if there are different plants and animals with different traits, it will not affect the entire population so the resistant ones will reproduce and pass the genes and create a greater biodiversity. Artificial selection is very expensive so only wealthy farmers and breeders can afford it. It is not according to God’s plan of creation. It is God who created plants and animals and have given them traits so farmers and breeders cannot make any preferences. As I find that there are more disadvantages than advantages for artificial selection and there are severe consequences, artificial selection should not be used in plants and animals.

Resources

31 comments:

  1. Hi John, thanks for the informative and interesting blog! I would have phrases some things differently, and some phrases I didn't quite understand, but overall it was a good blog. I don't agree though that artificial selection should not be used at all, because in our current situation, society has a dependence on artificial selection, and the food that it produces. An alternative to stopping it completely is to use it more thoughtfully and responsibly. I found it odd that you have more evidence supporting artificial selection in your blog than evidence against, so I don't know where you got your opinion from. There is no denying the numerous strong points of artificial selection, like the ones you have described quite well in this blog,and that is why we can't stop it completely. You have not really given any of it's weak points though, but they are numerous as well. I disagree that it is not God's plan for creation, because if it wasn't, wouldn't he stop it? I believe it is part of God's plan, because everything happens for a reason and is part of God's plan.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow. I found your blog entry very informative, you explained the process of selective breeding in a very detailed and orderly way. YOu showed me in a way that selective breeding was sort of like a "forced evolution". Although I do agree with Anil, you did'nt really touch base with the negative points of artificial selection as much as you did with its positive points. Selective breeding has many negative effects, like negative traits and weaknesses being passed down each generation because of the lack of variety which you explained briefly in the end.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This blog is very interesting and very knowledgeable about the artifical selection.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wow thanks for the enlightening and fascinating blog! you explained the process of artificial selection in a very comprehensive and orderly way. Artificial selection is done by humans, like we choose who survives. natural selection is done by nature, survival of the fittest, only the strong survive. showed me in a way that artificial selection was sort of like a "evolution". you didn't really touch base with the negative points of artificial selection as much as you did with its positive points. Artificial selection has also negative effects, like negative traits and weaknesses being passed down each generation because of the lack of variety

    ReplyDelete
  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This blog is very informative about the artificial selection. I'm grateful that this tactics and techniques are invented. Now there are many plants that are easily to produce and helping us to survive in everyday life. The farmers and breeders chooses those plants because of their capability to grow in an environment that we lived. But there still a negative effects done by artificial selection. We are very dependent of this tactics. Forgetting that there's natural selection that makes living things as it is.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  8. This blog is very educative and very enlightening. Artificial selection became commonly used by us humans and a very beneficial thing for us to support our own livelihood. As for this things, human decisions greatly affect nature and it's own organims, but whether it's for our own entertainment or our own purposes but still, I agree that artificial selection isn't a very recommendable thing we should do because as it became more influential, probably a reduction of the variation and biodiversity of organisms will occur.

    ReplyDelete
  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  11. How useful and influential this blog was! This blog showed that selective breeding not only known for its complex process but also for its effectiveness in terms of livelihood purposes. Through this blog, I've come to realize that artificial selection was really beneficial to mankind. Advantages such as improvement and enhancing of an organism's ability for a better outcome until it continues to pass its genes to the offspring. Thank you for sharing us an informative blog. Hope you continue sharing your knowledge to inspire more people.

    ReplyDelete
  12. This blog is useful for some people that don't easily understand what is the meaning of artificial selection and how it does help humans.Artificial selection is a lot of help in humans in the way of maximizing the use of the farmland and somehow it helps us to grow more organism.

    ReplyDelete
  13. The blog is useful to the people that didn't understand the meaning of artificial selection. The artificial selection is helpful to humans because in the way of maximizing the use of the farmland . It has an advantage that improving of the ability of organism to have a better outcome before passing its genes in offspring.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This blog is very usefull to many people. This blog shows about artificial selection on how it works and how it helps humankind. This shows the advantages such as enhancing of an organisms ability for a better result until it continues pass and share its genes to the offspring

    ReplyDelete
  15. The animals on earth are the one who produce products. What we eat, drink or even wear is from the animals. They just improve the quality and uses of that particular animal.But God didn't created the animals for us humans to make have them as a better product. We humans were made for us to take care of these plants and animals. It will only affect the extinction of plants and animals as well as the human's lifestyle.

    ReplyDelete
  16. The blog is useful and it can help to people because artificial selection about the important of animal and plant for us to produce lot of products and It creates new desirable traits for plants and animals. Farmer abd breeder is working hard to fertilize and pesticide the Plants to survive so that can produce products and they need a new breed to continues pass its genes to the offspring. Advsntages improvement of an organism ability for a outcome and maximizing the use of rhe farmland.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Your information about artificial selection is accurate and really helpful but I disagree with your opinion that artificial selection should not be in use. I think your referring to the guys that used artificial selection without proper knowledge that it resulted severe consequences. I think that artificial selection is also in God's mind because artificial selection is used, from the information you got, to change the traits of their plants and animals that can satisfy their needs and makes their lives easier. It's funny though you know that artificial selection is greatly used by the farmers, in poultry raising or in pig raising, you are against of it but you also benefit from this.

    ReplyDelete
  18. This blog is very helpful. We must give importance and take good care of our plants and animals because they are the one who can produce lot of products that we can use in our daily lives and satisfy our needs.

    ReplyDelete
  19. This blog is very informative and useful especially to those people who are engaged in Agricultural Industry. Being able to give the advantages and disadvantages of the said topic is good. With that, readers can think wisely whether to engage to Artificial Selection or not. Also, clipping many pictures makes it appealing to read and easy to understand. In the end, I learned that Artificial Selection is important in terms that people will benefit from it through lots of agricultural produce but should be wise enough because it can affects the economy, environment and God’s plan of creation.

    ReplyDelete
  20. This blog helps people's mind to be more open minded on how our world around us especially the environment and species originated. This blog shows helpful informations about the natural selection and how natural selection contributes to the study of species. I would definitely recommend this site if ever someone needed to learn more about natural selection, its contributions and its advantages. ☺��

    ReplyDelete
  21. Artificial selection is indeed a very modernized technique of producing the traits of plants and animals to satisfy our own entertainment because who wouldn't want to experiment and try new things right? Although, this would be a great advantage for our own entertainment purposes and the economical growth in the field of agriculture, I would sincerely side with you. Artificial Selection should not be prioritized by the economists for it completely tousled the balance of our biodiversity and ruining the balance of our biodiversity would greatly affect our living for we make up the biggest consumers with everything we do.

    ReplyDelete
  22. this blog is very informative and useful for the begginners breeder and for those who are interested in biology it well help them develop their skill in terms of farming, breeding,planting this would be a great help

    ReplyDelete
  23. This blog is very useful and interesting among students like me, it helps to understand more about the study of biology and to develop all there skills in all aspects. It helps to understand things and to be more open minded in surroundings.

    ReplyDelete
  24. This blog is very interesting and so useful in every person who wants to know about artificial selection. I've learned that it can help the farmers and breeders to produce a good quality products. All of us can benefit from it because it can help us in our daily survival.

    ReplyDelete
  25. This blog helps those people who doesn't understand the artificial selection well. We should take care of those things that can make our life more easier. And we can also benefit from those things and it helps us in our daily life and for survival.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Faster evolution. Scientists have used artificial selection to create brands of crops that are more resistant to pesticides or insects that used to reduce yields. Artificial selection of these crops have drastically increased the world's food supply by increasing farmer yields of crops. The only downside of this is that some of these artificial foods have been proven to not be as healthy, which has geared the movement towards organic foods, but without these artificial crops we would not have enough food to feed the world.

    ReplyDelete
  27. This blog shows how people reacts to all living things in the earth. Thats why there is events that species change depends in the environment and the weather. This blog signifies unity,reborn,and new meta.

    ReplyDelete
  28. This blog shows how people reacts to all living things in the earth. Thats why there is events that species change depends in the environment and the weather. This blog is helpful for those who are finding pets that is friendly, and we can know when the food is safe or it has poison or it has a bad effect on our body

    ReplyDelete
  29. This blog is very useful for people who don't really understand what artificial selection is. This explains a lot about how it affected an organism to change or adopt something new to itself. Although this is about plants and animals it's somehow like humans, why? because yes we have eyes,nose,ears,and other body parts but we can also be divided by gender,characteristics,personality,and stuff. Just sayin' cause it's somehow connected to this topic ^_^

    ReplyDelete
  30. I'm in favor of using artificial selection in plants becuase it does not help only the farmers but it helps the other plants to develop new species through breeding. With this method they create new kinds of plants not only in plants but also in animals. They have the same desirable traits so that it can survive through generations

    ReplyDelete
  31. This blog is very useful for people who don't really know or understand artificial selection is. like me this blog helps students to understand biology deeper and all of us can benefit from it because it can help us in our daily life

    ReplyDelete