The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

David Quammen
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. How would you describe Quammen's style?
(a) Pedantic.
(b) Linear.
(c) Patient and thorough.
(d) Disjointed.

2. How does Quammen describe the efforts of other scientists?
(a) Pedantic.
(b) Holistic.
(c) Partial.
(d) Insufficient.

3. How does Quammen find fault with other scientists studying extinctions?
(a) By saying that their nostalgia clouds their findings.
(b) By saying that their fundamental premises were ungrounded.
(c) By saying that their vocabulary is insufficient to the problems.
(d) By saying that they have only been talking to each other.

4. What is a thylacine?
(a) A crab.
(b) A kestrel.
(c) A kangaroo.
(d) A Tasmanian tiger.

5. How would you describe Quammen's narrative of the dodo's decline and extinction?
(a) Detailed narrative.
(b) Detailed hypothesis.
(c) Ungrounded fiction.
(d) Speculation.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does David Quammen invoke as he describes cutting the rug?

2. What is a sample?

3. What does Michael Soule study?

4. How does Quammen say islands are sometimes formed?

5. What question does Quammen say was debated for years after Darwin's theories were published?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why are islands important in ecosystem studies, in Quammen's opinion?

2. What is the governing metaphor in the opening chapter?

3. Describe Quammen's tone in the first chapter.

4. What is archipelago speciation?

5. Who is Philip Darlington, and what was his contribution to the discussion of island size and species count?

6. What is trophic cascade?

7. What factors have effectively broken the Persian rug of nature into pieces, according to Quammen?

8. What is the first explanation Quammen offers for the relationship between island size and species count?

9. What examples does Quammen cite of species changing size on islands?

10. What was the understanding about the variety of life forms before the theory of evolution came along?

(see the answer keys)

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