This article is a report on the work of a number of Australian scientists related to the evolution of the Echidna and its genetic link to the Platypus. The scientists use DNA analysis to suggest that the Echidna was once an aquatic animal and is more closely linked to the Platypus than previously believed.
Assumed prior learning
Suggestions for using this resource
- as an introduction for students in Year 10 to research the common characteristics of the current Echidna and the Platypus
- as a stimulus for students to research and compare the appearance of homologous structures of the Echidna and Platypus over time using fossil and other secondary evidence
- as a context for students to evaluate the impact of using DNA profiling on understanding the evolutionary relationships between groups of organisms
- as a stimulus or introduction to topics related to natural selection and the biodiversity of animals
- for Year 10 students to provide a context for deeper understanding of the theory of evolution.
National Film and Sound Archive, Australian Screen and titles: documentaries: Echidna the survivor
Video at http://aso.gov.au/titles/documentaries/echidna-survivor/clip3/