GATE Exam 2020 Ecology and Evolution (EY) Question Paper With Answer Key

GATE-2020

EY-Ecology and Evolution

GA- General Aptitude

Q1 – Q5 carry one mark each.

1. This book, including all its chapters, ______ interesting. The students as well as the instructor ______ in agreement about it.

(A)  is, was

(B)  are, are

(C)  is, are

(D)  were, was

Answer: (C)

2. People were prohibited ______ their vehicles near the entrance of the main administrative building.

(A)  to park

(B)  from parking

(C)  parking

(D)  to have parked

Answer: (B)

3. Select the word that fits the analogy:

Do : Undo :: Trust : ________

(A)  Entrust

(B)  Intrust

(C)  Distrust

(D)  Untrust

Answer: (C)

4. Stock markets ________ at the news of the coup.

(A)  poised

(B)  plunged

(C)  plugged

(D)  probed

Answer: (B)

5. If P, Q, R, S are four individuals, how many teams of size exceeding one can be formed, with Q as a member ?

(A)  5

(B)  6

(C)  7

(D)  8

Answer: (C)

Q6 – Q10 carry two marks each.

6. Non-performing Assets (NPAs) of a bank in India is defined as an asset, which remains unpaid by a borrower for a certain period of time in terms of interest, principal, or both. Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has changed the definition of NPA thrice during 1993-2004, in terms of the holding period of loans. The holding period was reduced by one quarter each time. In 1993, the holding period was four quarters (360 days).

Based on the above paragraph, the holding period of loans in 2004 after the third revision was ______ days.

(A)  45

(B)  90

(C)  135

(D)  180

Answer: (B)

7. Select the next element of the series: Z, WV, RQP, ______

(A)  LKJI

(B)  JIHG

(C)  KJIH

(D)  NMLK

Answer: (C)

8. In four-digit integer numbers from 1001 to 9999, the digit group “37” (in the same sequence) appears ______ times.

(A)  270

(B)  279

(C)  280

(D)  299

Answer: (C)

9. Given a semicircle with O as the centre, as shown in the figure, the ratio is ______. where  are chords.

(A)  √2

(B)  √3

(C)  2

(D)  3

Answer: (A)

10. The revenue and expenditure of four different companies P, Q, R and S in 2015 are shown in the figure. If the revenue of company Q in 2015 was 20% more than that in 2014, and company Q had earned a profit of 10% on expenditure in 2014, then its expenditure (in million rupees) in 2014 was _______.

(A)  32.7

(B)  33.7

(C)  34.1

(D)  35.1

Answer: (C)

EY: Ecology and Evolution

Q1 – Q25 carry one mark each.

1. Who among the following was a strong public supporter of Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection?

(A)  Jean-Baptiste Lamarck

(B)  Carl Linnaeus

(C)  Thomas Huxley

(D)  Gregor Mendel

Answer: (C)

2. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) can be used to compare multiple groups of samples. Select the correct option that reflects the principle behind ANOVA.

(A)  The sum of the squares of the variances is calculated for the groups being compared.

(B)  The variance ratio is calculated by subtracting each value from the overall mean, squaring the difference, and summing the resulting squared deviations.

(C)  The variation between groups is compared with the variation within groups.

(D)  The F value I statistically significant if the mean values between the groups are the same.

Answer: (C)

3. Which of the following information is provided by phylogenetic tree?

(A)  The topology and the branch lengths of the related taxa.

(B)  The topology and sequence length of the gene.

(C)  The sequence length of the gene and tree length.

(D)  The sequence type ad sequence variations within each taxa.

Answer: (A)

4. Myrmecochory refers to seed dispersal by which of the following agents?

(A)  Bats

(B)  Ants

(C)  Lizards

(D)  Birds

Answer: (B)

5. Which of the following is NOT capable of photosynthesis ?

(A)  Diatoms

(B)  Phytoplankton

(C)  Pteridophytes

(D)  Ascomycetes

Answer: (D)

6. Which of the following sensory mechanisms do most frugivorous bats primarily use while foraging?

(A)  Olfaction

(B)  Electromagnetism

(C)  Vibration

(D)  Echolocation

Answer: (A)

7. What direct effect does Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) have in vertebrates?

(A)  It causes follicles of the duodenum to contract.

(B)  It causes follicles o the ovaries to grow.

(C)  It causes follicles of the liver to enlarge.

(D)  It causes follicles of muscles to contract.

Answer: (B)

8. Juvenile rhesus macaques, who have never seen a leopard before, can learn to show fear response if they see an adult react fearfully to a leopard. What kind of behavioural response is this?

(A)  Imprinting

(B)  Instinct

(C)  Cultural transmission

(D)  Mimicry transmission

Answer: (C)

9. In a tropical rainforest during the day, which of the following factors does NOT affect the spectral irradiance at the forest floor?

(A)  Angle of the sun on the horizon.

(B)  Weather conditions of the atmosphere.

(C)  Structure of the canopy vegetation.

(D)  Spectral reflectance of the leaf litter.

Answer: (D)

10. What would evolutionary biologist hypothesize as the ultimate cause for the presence of colouful dewlaps in lizards?

(A)  Colour of dewlaps are formed by pigments in the skin.

(B)  Colourful dewlaps are formed by folds in the skin.

(C)  Colourful dewlaps increase mating success.

(D)  Colourful dewlaps are regions where motor neurons control head movement.

Answer: (C)

11. Which of the following is true about comparisons between herbivorous and carnivorous mammals?

(A)  Herbivores have longer digestive tracts and smaller caecum for the given body size than carnivores.

(B)  Carnivores have longer digestive tracts and smaller caecum for a given body size than herbivores.

(C)  Herbivores have shorter digestive tracts and smaller caecum for a given body size than carnivores.

(D)  Carnivores have shorter digestive tracts and smaller caecum for a given body size than herbivores.

Answer: (D)

12. Two isolated populations X and Y have 100 ad 10000 individuals respectively. Both populations have the same starting allele frequencies of p = 0.5 and q = 0.5. After 1000 generations of genetic drift, which of the following statements is true about the heterozygosity at this locus in these two populations?

(A)  The heterozygosity of population X will be more than population Y.

(B)  The heterozygosity of  population Y will be more than in population X.

(C)  The heterozygosity of both the populations will be identical.

(D)  The heterozygosity of these populations will not depend on their population sizes.

Answer: (B)

13. Which of the following criteria is used to define species under the biological species concept?

(A)  Niche partitioning

(B)  Reproductive isolation

(C)  Morphological divergence

(D)  Genetic distance

Answer: (B)

14. The abundances of three species (P, Q and R) were measured along a resource gradient. The resultant pattern in summarized in the figure. Which of the following statements can be inferred from niche theory?

(A)  P is generalist; Q and R are specialists.

(B)  Q is a generalist; P and R specialists.

(C)  P and Q are generalists; R is a specialist.

(D)  P and R are generalists; Q is a specialist.

Answer: (B)

15. In the last 3 to 4 decades, the average CO2 concentration in the Earth’s atmosphere has increased from_______.

(A)  3 ppm to 4 ppm

(B)  30 ppm to 40 ppm

(C)  300 ppm to 400 ppm

(D)  3000 ppm to 4000 ppm

Answer: (C)

16. What effect does myelination have on neurons?

(A)  It increases the transmembrane resistance.

(B)  It increases the membrane capacitance.

(C)  It changes the direction of signal propagation.

(D)  It protects synapse from damage.

Answer: (A)

17. Which of the following processes contributes to an increase in genetic variation?

(A)  Genetic drift

(B)  Directional selection

(C)  Inbreeding

(D)  Immigration

Answer: (D)

18. What characteristic do the plant species, sundew (Drosera capensis) and Venus fly trap (Dionaea muscipla), share?

(A)  They are thigmonastic.

(B)  They are nyctinastic.

(C)  They are epiphytic.

(D)  They are endophytic.

Answer: (A)

19. What is the study of fish known as?

(A)  Malacology

(B)  Herpetology

(C)  Physiology

(D)  Ichthyology

Answer: (D)

20. On one side of a house, a 50 watt bulb attracts moths at a rate of 30 individuals/minute. On the other side of the house, a 15 watt bulb attracts moths at a rate of 10 individuals/minute. There are 20 bats in the area who are foraging for these moths. According to Ideal Free Distribution, the number of bats near the 15 watt bulb should be _______.

Answer: (5 to 5)

21. The Simpson’s index of diversity is expressed as:

Where pi is the proportion of the ith species, and n is the total number of species.

The Simpson’s index of diversity for this dataset is ____ (round off to three decimal places).

Answer: (0.440 to 0.454)

22. In a botanical garden, tree species P had an average height of 1.5 m, while tree species Q had n average height of 1.8 m Pooled together, these two tree species had an average height of 1.7 m. From this, one can infer that the number of trees of species Q in the garden was _______ times the number of trees of species P.

Answer: (2 to 2)

23. A fragment of double stranded DNA has 30% Adenine. The % GC content in this fragment is _______.

Answer: (40 to 40)

24. A researcher traps rodents in a small, isolated forest patch. In the first trapping session she captures 24 mice ad marks them by notching their ears. In the second trapping session she captures 16 mice, of which 8 are already marked. Assuming that the population is closed (no immigration, emigration, birth, or death), the estimated number mice in the patch is_______.

Answer: (48 to 48)

25. A raptor sitting on a tree sees a rodent on the ground below as shown in the figure (not to scale). If the raptor views the rodent from a height of 10 metres, and the rodent subtends a visual angle of 45° on the raptor’s eye, the straight line distance from the raptor to the rodent in metres is ______ (round off to two decimal places).

Answer: (14.00 to 14.28)

Q26 – Q55 carry two marks each.

26. Beetles of one species have the option of eating plant species X or Y in their environment. Plant species X and Y have the same nutritional quality. When beetle diets comprise a greater proportion of a plant X, the population size of beetles increase faster than when beetle diets are dominated by plant Y. Which of the following is NOT a probable explanation for this outcome?

(A)  Xenobiotics in X are physiologically easier for the beetles to detoxify than t hose in Y.

(B)  Sequestration of xenobiotics from Y by the beetles confers greater protection from bird predators than those from Y.

(C)  X attracts parasites of the beetles while Y does not.

(D)  X provides greater protection from bird predators during foraging than does Y.

Answer: (C)

27. A researcher was documenting the number of tree species in landscape. Within each of three forest types (P, Q and R), she laid 100 quadrats and documented all the species found in each quadrat. She then plotted the cumulative species richness for these forest types as shown in the figure. Which of the following statements is FALSE?

(A)  There are more species of trees in P than in R.

(B)  There are more species of trees in Q than in R.

(C)  More quadrats are required to estimate species richness in P than in Q.

(D)  More quadrats are required to estimate species richness in Q than in R.

Answer: (C)

28. Which of the following ha an endemic species represented in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands for all taxonomic groups in that column?

(A)  Column P

(B)  Column Q

(C)  Column R

(D)  Column S

Answer: (D)

29. The theory of island biogeography predicts that the number of species o islands is determined by: (i) the rate of colonization, which depends on the distance of the island from the mainland and (ii) the rate of extinction which depends on the size of the island. A researcher surveyed two islands with similar habitats and geological history, and found that both islands have the same number of species. Which of the following statement(s) can explain this observation?

(P) The islands are of the same size and are at the same distance from the mainland.

(Q) The islands are of different sizes and are at the same distance from the mainland.

(R) The islands are of the same size and are at different distance from the mainland.

(S) The  islands are of different sizes and are of different distances from t he mainland.

(A)  Only P.

(B)  Only Q.

(C)  Both P and S.

(D)  Both Q and R.

Answer: (C)

30. In marine fauna, Pelagic Larval Duration (PLD) or the amount of time that larvae spend swimming or drifting in the water column affects their dispersal distance. Successful establishment of the larvae on a substrate also depends on finding a suitable habitat after dispersal, which is influenced by whether that habitat is patchy or continuous. Which of the following species will have the lowest population genetic structure (FST) across the same spatial scale?

(A)  Species with high PLD inn patchy habitats.

(B)  Species with high PLD in continuous habitats.

(C)  Species with low PLD in patchy habitats.

(D)  Species with low PLD in continuous habitats.

Answer: (B)

31. Every lake in Wakanda has three species of fish: P, Q and R. Species P is a bottom dweller and substrate feeder, species Q is a mid-column dweller and herbivore, and species R is a surface dweller and piscivore. Which of the following processes best explains this distribution pattern?

(A)  Speciation within one lake followed by dispersal to other lakes.

(B)  Dispersal between lakes followed by speciation within lakes.

(C)  Independent speciation events within all the takes.

(D)  Speciation within a lake with no dispersal between lakes.

Answer: (A)

32. Group living can have both benefits (such as protection from predators) and costs (such as competition for resources). The figure depicts net benefit to individuals as a function of group size. Consider a population with more than hundred individuals, where groups do not split, and individuals can choose to either join a group or remain solitary. Given this information, what is the typical group size predicted?

(A)  Less than 6

(B)  Equal to 6

(C)  Between 6 and 12

(D)  Greater than 12

Answer: (C)

33. Two species of snails, P and Q, are found in rivers across a range of temperatures that vary from upstream a downstream. An experiment was conducted in which P was removed from a river and the distribution of Q was measured after a few weeks. In another similar river, the reciprocal experiment was conducted I which Q was removed, and the distribution of P was measured after a few weeks. In the graph below, the filled bars plot the distribution of P and Q when both species are present in a river. The open bars plot the distribution of P when Q is removed, and Q when P is removed. Which of the following statements is true?

(A)  The realized niche of P is smaller than its fundamental niche.

(B)  The realized niche of Q is smaller than its fundamental niche.

(C)  The realized niche is smaller than the fundamental niche for both species.

(D)  The realized niches of both species are equal.

Answer: (A)

34. In plants with bisexual flowers (hermaphrodites), mate-choice by females is expected to be important under which of the following cases?

(i) Seed set is pollen-limited rather than resource-limited.

(ii) Obligate self-pollination is present.

(iii) Seed set is resource-limited rather than pollen-limited.

(iv) Obligate cross-pollination is present.

(A)  (i) and (ii)

(B)  (ii) and (iii)

(C)  (iii) and (iv)

(D)  (i) and (iv)

Answer: (C)

35. Match the breeding system of the plants with their pollen : ovule ratio.

(A)  P-i, Q-iii, R-ii, S-iv

(B)  P-ii, Q-i, R-iv, S-iii

(C)  P-iv, Q-iii, R-i, S-ii

(D)  P-iii, Q-iv, R-i, S-ii

Answer: (C)

36. A particular gene sequence from two different species shows molecular clock-like evolution. Which of the following statements is consistent with this observation?

(A)  The two sequences will show a linear decrease in their genetic distance with time.

(B)  The genetic distance between the two sequences remains constant over time.

(C)  The rate of evolution for this gene sequence is not constant over time.

(D)  The two sequences will show a linear increase in their genetic distance with time.

Answer: (D)

37. An internal parasite of a mammal does not generate its own heat and yet it can maintain a constant body temperature. Which characteristics describe this parasite?

(A)  Homeothermic ectotherm

(B)  Homeothermic endotherm

(C)  Poikilothermic ectotherm

(D)  Poikilothermic endotherm

Answer: (A)

38. In a population of infinite size, the frequency of two alleles. A1 and A2 at a neutral locus are the same. What are the expected genotype frequencies (A1A1, A1A2, A2A2) after 100 generations of random mating?

(A)  0.25, 0.5, 0.25

(B)  0.5, 0.25, 0.25

(C)  0.25, 0.25, 0.5

(D)  0.05, 0.5, 0.45

Answer: (A)

39. A certain rodent species shows territoriality, competes for space and food, and their population is at carrying capacity. In the figures, the area within the rectangle (i) to (iv) represents a completely homogenous habitat where resources are distributed throughout, and the grey polygons represent rodent home ranges. Which of the following patterns best represents the expected distribution of home ranges of the rodent species if individuals vary in competitive ability?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (D)

40. For a given gene there is 5% DNA sequence divergence between two species, however the protein coded by this gene has identical sequences in the two species. Which of the following types of mutations best explains this pattern in the DNA sequence?

(A)  Nonsense mutation

(B)  Synonymous substitution

(C)  Non-synonymous substitution

(D)  Frame-shift mutation

Answer: (B)

41. A researcher collects data on plant species composition in two habitats (P and Q) by using 10 quadrats each in both habitats. She calculates the average α-diversity and the β-diversity of each habitat from this data (shown below). Which of the following can be inferred about these habitats?

(A)  p and Q have the same total diversity (γ) and P is more heterogeneous than Q.

(B)  Q has lower total diversity (γ) and is more heterogeneous than P.

(C)  P has greater total diversity (γ) and is more heterogeneous than Q.

(D)  Q has greater total diversity (γ) and is more heterogeneous than P.

Answer: (C)

42. Among four related bird species P, Q, R and S, species P and Q are nectar feeding with long thin beaks, whereas species R and S are seed eaters with short thick beaks. Which o the following phylogenies unambiguously suggests that seed eating habit was the ancestral state?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (B)

43. A population of unicorns is growing over time, but its rate of growth is declining. Which of the following graphs best represents this pattern of growth?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (A)

44. In a polyploidization event, tetraploid progeny were formed by diploid parents. Hybridization between the tetraploid and diploid parent gave rise to sterile triploids. Which of the following best explains why these triploids were sterile?

(A)  Many mutations during polyploidization have no phenotypic effect.

(B)  Some chromosomes are without homologs during meiosis.

(C)  Some chromosomes are without homologs during mitosis.

(D)  All chromosomes have homologs during mitosis.

Answer: (B)

45. Blood tests are often used to screen for potential diseases. For a particular disease:

(i) Of 1000 persons who tested negative (T’), 1 person had the disease (D); Pr(D|T’).

(ii) of 10 persons who tested positive (T’), 1 person had the disease (D); Pr(D|T’).

From this we can calculate  

What can be inferred from t his value ?

(A)  100 people have the disease but they will not test positive.

(B)  1 in 100 people have the disease and they will test positive.

(C)  100 in 1000 people have the disease and their blood tests will be inconclusive.

(D)  People with positive tests are 100 time more likely t have the disease than people with negative tests.

Answer: (D)

46. The relative frequency distributions of vales of a trait in two samples, P and Q, are shown in figure. Which of the following statements is consistent with the figure?

(A)  P has higher mean than Q; Q has higher variance than P.

(B)  P has a higher mean than Q: P has a higher variance than Q.

(C)  P and Q have the same mean; Q has higher variance than P.

(D)  P and Q  have the same mean; P has higher variance than Q.

Answer: (C)

47. Consider the function f(x) = |(eβx)/(β)|

Which of the following graphs represents the relationship between x and f(x)?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (A)

48. In a nocturnal moth species (X), individuals with longer antennae have smaller eyes. This indicates a sensory trade-off. In a closely related but diurnal moth species (Y), individuals exhibit the same obligate sensory trade-off. Which of the following figures describes the relationship between these two traits in moth species Y, if it relies more on vision than olfaction?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (A)

49. A researcher compared grass species richness in a 10 m × 10 m plot immediately before (T0) and 100 days after (T100) a fire. She observed that species richness was higher at T100 than at T­0. Which of the following data is required for her to conclude that species richness increased because of the fire?

(A)  Grass species richness of a 10 m × 10 m plot in a nearby area that also burned.

(B)  Grass species richness of a 10 m × 10 m plot only at T100 in nearby area that did not burn.

(C)  Grass species richness of a 10 m × 10 m plot at both T0 and T100 in a nearby area that did not burn.

(D)  Grass species richness of the same 10 m × 10 m  plot every 10 days after the fire until T100.

Answer: (C)

50. Following a gene duplication event, the duplicated copy often loses function and is called a pseudogene. In the absence of positive selection, which of the following is true about these genes?

(A)  The functional gene will accumulate mutations more rapidly than the pseudogene.

(B)  The pseudogene will accumulate mutations more rapidly than the functional gene.

(C)  Both the functional gene and pseudogene will accumulate mutations at the same rate.

(D)  The pseudogene will not accumulate mutations.

Answer: (B)

51. Which of the figures represents the expected relationship between parental care and the number of offspring produced across taxa?

(A)  (i)

(B)  (ii)

(C)  (iii)

(D)  (iv)

Answer: (C)

52. Match the following plant traits with the correct plant group/family:

(A)  P-iv, Q-v, R-i, S-ii

(B)  P-ii, Q-iv, R-iii, S-i

(C)  P-i, Q-ii, R-iii, S-iv

(D)  P-iii, Q-v, R-i, S-ii

Answer: (D)

53. In a population of 100 individuals of a diploid organism with 1:1 sex ratio, the probability of fixation of a new neutral mutation is ______ (round off to three decimal places).

Answer: (0.005 to 0.005)

54. The binomial probability of obtaining exactly k successes in n trials, where the probability of success in a single trial is p, is given by :

Here,  rotation refers to number of combinations for k successes among n trials. With a fair and unbiased coin, the probability of getting 2 HEADS in a trial with 5 tosses is __________ (round off to two decimal places).

Answer: (0.30 to 0.35)

55. The petrified wood fossil was discovered with 8 g of 14 The decay of 14C over time is given by:

NT = N0e0.0001216T

I the half-life of 14C is 5700 years, and the fossil initially had 2 g of 14C, the age of the fossil in  years is ________.

Answer: (11300 to 11500)

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