Understanding Evolution: your one-stop source for information on evolution
Resource library Teaching materials Evolution 101

Teaching materials : Image library:

To save: right-click (Windows) or control-click (Mac) on the image and select "Save image."

Artificial selection in the lab (1 of 2)

Image caption:
Guppy spots are largely genetically controlled. Spots that help the guppy blend in with its surroundings protect it from predation but spots that make it stand out help it attract mates. In this experiment, guppies were raised in ponds that varied in the coarseness of gravel on the bottom. All ponds had predators. After fewer than 15 generations of selection, the markings of guppies in different ponds had substantially diverged as a result of natural selection. In the presence of predators, guppies evolved to blend in with their background.

See the Understanding Evolution page where this image appears.

<< Back to search results

Image credit:
If you use this image in your own non-commercial project please credit it to the University of California Museum of Paleontology's Understanding Evolution (http://evolution.berkeley.edu).

This image is part of a series:

Artificial selection in the lab (2 of 2)
The same experiment was performed in the same pond set-up, but without predators. After fewer than 15 generations of selection, the markings of guppies in different ponds had substantially diverged as a result of natural selection. In the presence of predators, guppies evolved to blend in with their background.