Evolution Monster Project: Neptune

By: Harris Cohen

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Surface Conditions of Neptune

Neptune is a gas giant/ice giant with a rocky core speculated to be the mass of earth. The percentage of water increase the farther you get from the clouds, so there might be an ocean, but that is a 15% chance.

Climate of Neptune

The average temperature of Neptune is -353 Fahrenheit (-214 Celsius). A season on Neptune lasts forty years, so we do not know the seasonal temperatures but we know springtime brings -400 Fahrenheit, so we know Neptune is consistently freezing.

Weather Patterns on Neptune

Neptune has huge storms with extremely high winds. Some of the most violent weather in the solar system. Astronomers have observed winds on Neptune traveling at 2,100 km/hour.

Common Elements on Neptune

Neptune's atmosphere is made from about 80% hydrogen and 19% helium. It also contains a small amount water, methane, and ammonia. The thin cirrus-like white clouds contain methane ice. The core is rock and ice, but we can not see the core, so we are not exactly sure. My monster will use the ammonia and methane as food sources.

Environmental Hazards on Neptune

There are ginormous storms on Neptune, extremely high winds, and intense coldness, plus, if my monster was to stand on the core there would be extreme pressure.

Influential Forces on Neptune

Gravitational force on Neptune is 119 % the gravitational force on Earth or Neptune's gravity is 11.15 m/s². The surface pressure is about 1000 bars. Water pressure is unknown. Neptune can have temperatures extreme as low as −218 Celsius (55.1 Kelvin/-360.4 Fahrenheit). Neptune's magnetic field is tilted 47 degrees from the planet's rotation axis, and is offset about 13,500 kilometers or 8,500 miles from the physical center. The field strength at the surface varies, depending on which hemisphere is being measured, from a maximum of more than 1 gauss in the southern hemisphere to a minimum of less than 0.1 gauss in the northern. Because of its unusual orientation and the tilt of the planet's rotation axis, Neptune's magnetic field goes through dramatic changes as the planet rotates.

Needed Patterns of Artificial Selection

Neptune is extremely cold so my monster will need to withstand cold. It also needs to be able to withstand the wind and extreme pressure. My monster needs to eat so it needs a way to consume methane and ammonia.

Possibilities for Heritability

As the organism breeds, its children will inherent traits that make it easy to survive on Neptune due to their parents who also have traits that make it easy to survive on Neptune. They might get wings, eyes, or even teeth!

Factors that Will Lead to Natural Selection

Any organism that can not withstand the wind, pressure, and/or cold will die, so those genes will no longer breed. Any monster that can better withstand these hazards will breed more and die less.

Starting MRAS

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Season 1

Catastrophism

There are gigantic storms on Neptune that can affect the phenotypes of my organisms. You either adapt to the storms, or you die. To survive, it would probably need control of direction so it can moniver around the storm. It would also need eyes to see where it was going.

Gradualism

Since gradualism is slow and takes place over extreme amounts of time, my organism would have time to change its physical characteristics. The monsters with helpful mutations would have time to mate and survive. If the temperature of my planet increases over a long period of time, the organisms with less fur would have time to mate more. Over time, mutations would appear that help with dealing with the rising temperature of Neptune. This would then cause those genes to be passed through out the family line.

Uniformitarianism

Since uniformitarianism is the scientific observation that the same natural laws and processes that operate in the universe now have always worked the same, I can expect my organism to evolve, adapt, and eventually go extinct because that has been the case with most animals. Dinosaurs evolved, adapted, and then were wiped out like so many other organisms in our universe. It is just what happens.

Sexual Selection

Since certain traits enhance mating success, when my organism breeds, and mutations occur like more fur, it will stay alive longer and be more attractive, which causes the organisms to mate. This trait will be passed on and that family will grow strong and will survive longer than the other, less capable monsters. When a storm hits, the female MRASs will mate with the males with control of capabilities because they want their children to have the necessary traits to survive.

Fitness

Fitness will make it so the best organism will survive and mate. This means my species of monsters will continue to grow stronger and adapt. Monsters with directional control will be able to survive while others die. This will eliminate unwanted traits.

Gene Pool of My Organism

Thick fur= F

Short fur= f

Big air pockets= P

Small air pockets= p

Blue fur= B

Brown fur= b

Tentacles=r

No tentacles=R

Tough Bones=T

Weak Bones=t

Eyes=E

No eyes=e


My organisms will breed and mutate, so some traits that are not listed will show up. Over time the gene pool will increase since organisms with different traits will mate to handle their current situations.

Variaton

Variations like a bigger mouth to eat more ammonia and methane will make it easier for my organism to survive. This will mean it will mate more. This means my monster will continue to adapt and variate to survive.

Adaption

To survive bigger storms my organism will need stronger bones to withstand force.

To survive decreases of heat, my monster will need even thicker hair, and if gets warmer my monster will need less hair. These are all adaptions that need to occur in situations for my organism to survive.

Season 1 Organisms

CATASTROPHE!!!!!!!!

A HUGE storm splits the population up since the organisms have no control of direction.

Geographic Isolation

Organisms 1 and 2 are put together. Most of the offspring gain eyes since 1 has eyes and they are dominant. 3 and 4 are relocated together. Most of their offspring will have blue hair since 3 has blue hair and that trait is dominant. 5 and 6 are isolated together. Their offspring mostly gain eyes since 6 has eyes and eyes are dominant. 7 and 8 are put together. Their offspring mostly receive the blue hair trait since blue is dominant and 7 has blue hair.

Temporal Isolation

1-4 all mate in the morning while 5-8 mate at night. This means 5-8 can not possibly mate with 1-4.

Reproductive Isolation

All groups of two are no longer able to mate with other groups of two. They have gotten so used to their partners, that they do not let any other organisms reproduce with them.

Speciation

My organisms develop traits that make them completely different from my other monsters. Different mating habits, different phenotypes, and some mutations make these organisms completely different species. Maybe wings, or brown fur, maybe eyes, or morning habits can make these species, separate SPECIES.

Gene Flow

Since storms constantly reconnect some of the populations, some alleles transfer. The (1,2) organisms gained a mutation that gave them wings. When they fly by (3,4) they mate and give some of their offspring wings and no tentacles. (5,6) gain a mutation that gives them spikes. A storm brings them towards (7,8) . (5,6) Give some (7,8) offspring eyes, no tentacles, and some get spike.

Genetic Drift

The process of receiving traits is a bit random, so while blue fur might be dominant, brown fur can randomly show up in some of my populations. Like wise, tentacles and no eyes might also appear.

Plantlike Species VS Animal Like Species

Homologous Structures

The tentacles on the animal like species are used in the plantlike species to attach and root through all the ice on Neptune. They are similar in look. The air filled balloons are used in the plant as ways to float until a piece of ice comes along, just like they are used to float with the animals. These are similar with function and look. The filter on the plant is where it keeps all its nutrients while it is floating in space, waiting for a block of ice to come by. This shares the look with the animals filter mouth. Both the plant and animal species have spikes to protect themselves. The stem shares function with the strong body of the animal, to protect against pressure.

Analogous Structure

The roots of the plant are used like the filter of the animal, to gather nutrients. The thick stem helps the plant with the pressure of Neptune just like the thick body of the animal helps with pressure. These are different structures but they serve the same function.

Vestigial Structures

Their are wings on the plant that used to be used for flying on the animals, but now have no use on the plant. There are also bones in the flower pedals that were used in the head of the animals, but have no use on the plant.

Season 2 Organisms

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Season 3

Gravitropism/Geotropism

My plants will grow close to the ground, since there is so much pressure. The roots will grow down through the ice, and the head crushed around the block of ice it is surrounding. While it is floating in space, the stem will grow extremely strong, but probably grow down with the roots.

Phototropism

In instead of going to a light source, because there is not really any on Neptune, It would use the energy in the ice. Where there are bonds, there is energy. This means my plant will always be growing to where there is ice. Its roots will weave around the planet looking for ice.

Thigmotropism

My plant is in contact with ice, so it will wrap itself around that ice to stay attached to that ice. It will be like it is grabbing, or hugging the ice. The grasp will be extremely strong, since there are such huge storms on Neptune, my plant needs to stay attached through the toughest winds.

Punctuated Equilibrium

Since Neptune stays at a constant weather, climate, and temperature, this does not really apply. My plant will not go through speciation and not evolve slowly, because it will not need to.

Climate Conditions

Since it is extremely cold on Neptune, my plant will grow hair like fibers to stay warm. If by some weird chance, it becomes warm on Neptune, my plants will lose those fibers.

Season 3 Organisms

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Season 4

Adaptive Radiation

My animals gain individual niches based on if they are carnivores or herbivores. The carnivores have attackers who have big fangs to kill with, look outs to find food with strong eyes, and speeders who have extremely strong wings to tackle prey. The herbivores have defenders of the populations who have spikes, scavengers who have better eyes to look for the plants on ice and also the ice floating in space, and gatherers who have long, thin, and strong hands to pull out the plants from the ice.

Camouflage

My carnivores need blue fur to blend in with the atmosphere while hunting and my herbivores need blue fur to hide from the carnivores. There is a lot of blue on Neptune.

Mimicry

My herbivores would want to look like ice so the carnivores do not try and attack them. My Carnivore look outs will want to look like ice so they can watch for prey without being seen. Then they will alert the attackers and speeders.

Survival of the Fittest

The herbivores who can not camouflage and mimicry will be killed. These genes will eventually be exterminated. The hunters who are not fast enough or strong enough will starve to death. These less wanted genes will eventually also be exterminated.

Season 4 Organisms

Carnivores

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Herbivores

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