Peppered Moth

and Natural Selection

What is Natural Selection?

Natural Selection is the name given to the process of adaptation that allows a species to better fit its environment allowing better survival and offspring rates.

This theory was expounded by Charles Darwin

What is Natural Selection

Before the Industrial Revolution

98% of peppered moths were white with black spots, making the remaining 2% black with white spots. Due to the trees in the area that made up their environments being of a lighter coloured bark and the lichen on the trees being white the moth that is white with black spots could camouflage better giving them a higher survival rate.

The Impact of the Industrial Revolution

The Industrial Revolution occurred in England, it was the name given to a time where many factories were running off coal. Due to the burning of the coal it caused a dark smoke to settle over the area, this caused the bark of light coloured trees to turn dark. This then meant that the white with black spots moth was exposed to predators and the 2% of moths that were black with white spots now held the favourable trait. Due to this change the moths then begun to pass on their DNA colour mutation to the next generation.

Peppered Moth Comparison

This image shows the colour change in the Peppered Moth caused by the industrial revolution.