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Table 1 Item prompts

From: “Force-Talk” in Evolutionary Explanation: Metaphors and Misconceptions

Trait gain Trait loss Follow-up questions
A species of snails (animals) is poisonous. How would biologists explain how this species evolved from an ancestral species of snails that was not poisonous? A species of flightless birds (birds that cannot fly, such as penguins) is closely related to bird species that are able to fly. How would biologists explain how a flightless bird species originated from an ancestral bird species that could fly? Please explain what you mean by the term “pressure/pressured/pressures/pressuring” and how it fits into your explanation.
Most living oak species (plants) produce nuts. How would biologists explain how an oak tree species with nuts evolved from an ancestral species that did not produce nuts? Thorns are completely absent in one rose species (plants). How would biologists explain how this thornless species evolved from an ancestral rose species with thorns?  
One species of prosimians (animals) has long tarsi. How would biologists explain how this species with long tarsi evolved from an ancestral species of prosimian that had short tarsi? In one species of Suricata (animals), a pollex is absent. How would biologists explain how the Suricata species without a pollex evolved from an ancestral species of Suricata with a pollex?  
Dodders, a plant species, have haustoria. How would biologists explain how the dodder species with haustoria evolved from an ancestral species that lacked haustoria? One species of Labiatae plants is known to lack pulegone. How would biologists explain how this species evolved from a closely related ancestral plant species that had pulegone?  
  1. Note that both gain and loss items included two familiar taxa and traits and two unfamiliar taxa and traits