an answer says that variation is beneficial to the species but not necessarily to an individual....but how is this possible????....
variation is beneficial to the individual therefore it is able to survive even in harsh conditions when other individuals cannot survive....if the individual would not survive how will it create a new specie in that altered niche....plzz clear my doubt....

Asked by shailesh arlekar | 27th Feb, 2015, 07:58: PM

Expert Answer:

  • Variation acts as a source of raw material for evolution of species.
  • It leads to genetic diversity, which is a key for the evolution of species. Animals are able to adapt themselves to the changing environment by inheriting some of the beneficial variations. Organisms are better suited to face the struggle for existence due to the presence of variations.
  • Variations give the species an individuality of their own. In the absence of variation, there would be no science of heredity as all individuals of a race, would be identical to one another in all aspects.
  • As the effects of variation are cumulative and reflect over a period of generations, it is said that, ‘’Variation is beneficial to the species, but not necessarily for the individual”.
  • All the variants, however, do not have equal chances of survival. Depending on the environmental conditions, the nature favours only those variations that are able to adjust to the changing environment. The theory of natural selection favours the survival of the fittest.
  • Variations bring heterogeneity in the population and provide the raw material on which natural selection operates. This results in increase in gene frequency of useful genetic variability. This finally leads to speciation and in turn, helps in evolution.
  • Therefore, in the long run, variations that confer advantage to an individual organism will have better chances of survival in a population. 

Answered by Sheetal Kolte | 2nd Mar, 2015, 11:25: AM