Artificial selection

Artificial selection also known as selective breeding is when humans select and breed organisms that they choose due to their desirable features. As a consequence of this type of breeding animals of a particular variety become the fittest in the population due to artificial means rather than through natural selection.

Implications

  • Changes of allele frequencies in the gene pool
  • Increased number of homozygotes, and less heterozygotes in the population.
  • Less bio diversity, leading to greater susceptibility of populations to pathogens and or changes in environmental conditions.

Examples of artificial selection

  • Selecting beef cattle on the base of their meat yield and non fatty carcass.
  • Selecting dairy cattle on the basis of milk yield and butterfat content.
  • Selecting rams on the basis of the fineness of their wool fibre and the yield of greasy fleece.

See also