Evolution of Ecosystems as Chimeras

Introduction: On the next page is a table from a paper I wrote recently that suggest there could be relationships between the network structures and aspects of Loop Analysis with the three functions I previously hypothesized as important in planktonic ecosystem chimeras. This is a ‘Table of Ideas’ not proven scientific fact. I will not be insulted in any way if you criticize any part of the table-go at it!

Purpose of Quiz: The purpose of this quiz is to dive a little deeper in how ecosystems may evolve in terms of the 3 main functional requirements the total planktonic ecosystem chimera needs to fulfil and to give you experience in formulating your own thought experiment in evolutionary ecology. Many aspects of evolutionary ecology happened in the distant past and cannot be observed in a traditional empirical experiment. Thought Experiments facilitate the flow of creativity as Einstein said that “imagination can take one anywhere”.


1. Do the reading for this section, view the videos, and watch the lecture. Check the terms to see if you know the basic concepts and terminology of this section and be able to answer the questions. Now you are ready to begin preparing the quiz.

2. For one element (square) of this matrix, do the following:

(a) Discuss whether you believe that it is correct or not. Explain your answer. (1.5 pt.)

(b) Suggest an alternative explanation and explain it. (1.5 pt.)

(c) Devise a Thought Experiment to support either a or b depending on which you think is your best option. (3 pt.) Be sure to include your assumptions and the logical flow of ‘thought’ to your conclusion.

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