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allometry: The relation between the size of an organism and the size of any of its parts.

The term can also be applied to larger groups of organisms, as in "the adaptive radiation of mammals." adaptive strategies: A mode of coping with competition or environmental conditions on an evolutionary time scale.

Species adapt when succeeding generations emphasize beneficial characteristics.

The diameter of the aperture determines the intensity of light admitted. archeology: The study of human history and prehistory through the excavation of sites and the analysis of physical remains, such as graves, tools, pottery, and other artifacts.

The pupil of a human eye is a self-adjusting aperture. archetype: The original form or body plan from which a group of organisms develops.

amphibians: The class of vertebrates that contains the frogs, toads, newts, and salamanders.

The amphibians evolved in the Devonian period (about 370 million years ago) as the first vertebrates to occupy the land.

Then, even if circumstances change such that it no longer provides any survival or reproductive advantage, the behavior will still tend to be exhibited -- unless it becomes positively disadvantageous in the new environment.

adaptive radiation: The diversification, over evolutionary time, of a species or group of species into several different species or subspecies that are typically adapted to different ecological niches (for example, Darwin's finches).

Allometric relations can be studied during the growth of a single organism, between different organisms within a species, or between organisms in different species. amino acid: The unit molecular building block of proteins, which are chains of amino acids in a certain sequence.

allopatric speciation: Speciation that occurs when two or more populations of a species are geographically isolated from one another sufficiently that they do not interbreed. There are 20 main amino acids in the proteins of living things, and the properties of a protein are determined by its particular amino acid sequence.

In a diploid cell there are usually two alleles of any one gene (one from each parent).