The Birds And The Beaks Darwin's Finches Grade 11 Biology Assignment

966 words - 4 pages

The Birds and the Beaks
Evan Wheldon
Mrs. Hanson
April 3, 2019
Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution has been proven to be true many times,
several ways throughout history, but one of the first and most significant contributions
to this theory was “Darwin’s Finches.” The finches were a collection of about fifteen
species of passerine birds. He became aware of the fact that these birds each had a
different beak to suit their environment and allow them to survive. This eventually
became important evidence to the theory of evolution. The purpose of this lab is to
mimic Darwin’s theory of evolution/survival of the fittest by pretending to be birds with
different beaks to see the possible advantages and disadvantages certain beaks may
have over others. My hypothesis is that there will be a difference in which bird can pick
up the most food/which one flourish and evolve. If there is an imbalance, the person
with tweezers will be more successful than all the others because they have the ability
to pick up, grab, stab, or scoop food up—various methods of gathering/eating food
would give that bird a distinct advantage over the others. This bird would then “evolve”
and it’s genes would be the ones used because it didn’t go extinct and was best
adapted to it’s environment.
Experimental Procedure
To perform this experiment, several different materials are needed. The beaks
are simulated by a fork, a poker, tweezers and a bag clip. The various seeds are
replicated by kernels, Cheerios, marshmallows and little pieces of pink string. A plastic
cub is used for the stomach and a piece of paper & pen are also needed to record
This investigation begins by choosing a three by three area of tiles on the floor
and randomly spreading twenty pieces of each kind of seed. Four people sit around the
square, one on each side, cross-legged so nobody has the upper hand concerning
reach or movement. Set a timer for fifteen seconds and see which bird can collect the
most food during that time period using their beak and placing it in the cup (stomach).
When the trial is over, remove the food from the cups and place it outside the square. If
someone does not collect any food during a trial, they are eliminated and their bird
becomes extinct. Then, repeat the trials until there is no food left or only one bird
Trial # Tool or “Beak” Used by Bird Seeds Eaten Extinct?
Tweezers 5 marshmallows
2 Cheerios No
2 marshmallows
2 strings
1 Cheerio
1 strings
1 marshmallow
1 Cheerio
Clip 4 Cheerios
2 strings No
Trial #
Tweezers 4 Cheerios
3 strings No
1 marshmallow
2 strings
2 Cheerios
Poker 1 Cheerio
1 string No
Clip 5 marshmallows No
Tweezers 4 kernels No
Fork 1 string No
Poker 2 Cheerios

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