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Vertebrate Adaptions for Terrestrial Life

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Vertebrate Adaptions For Terrestrial Life

AP-Biology Essay on vertebrate structural adaptations for terrestrial life.

     The problems of survival of animals on land are very different from
those of survival of animals in aquatic environment. Describe four problems
associated with animal survival in terrestrial environments but not in aquatic
environments. For each problem, explain a physiological of structural solution.

     Four problems faced by animals on land are breathing (respiration),
water conservation in excretions, successful reproduction, and the producing an
egg which can survive outside of the water.

     All animals need to respire, but I have no idea why. Maybe you would
like to answer that? Aquatic animals use gills, which are outgrowths from the
body which increase surface area over which gas exchange can occur. Inside the
gills of aquatic animals, the circulatory system removes oxygen, and delivers
waste carbon dioxide. Land vertebrates have developed a different approach to
the problem of gas exchange, as water is not present in all of the terrestrial
environment. Terrestrial vertebrates have developed lungs to solve this problem.
Air enters through the nasal passages, or the mouth, passes through the trachea,
then branches off at the two bronchi, and goes through many branching passages
called bronchioles, which end in alveoli. Alveoli are sack-like structures where
the circulatory system meets the respiratory system.


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