Question: Try to collect all the currently accepted meanings for the word ” species. “ Discuss with your teacher the meaning of species in the case of higher plants and animals on the one hand and bacteria on the other hand.
Answer: Species are defined as the basic unit of classification and taxonomic rank of organisms and a unit of biodiversity. Species are sometimes described as groups of individuals who share a similar gene pool.
In higher plants and animals, the term “species” is often defined as the largest group of similar organisms capable of interbreeding under natural conditions, typically by sexual reproduction, to produce fertile offspring. But, in the case of bacteria, interbreeding cannot serve as the best criteria for classifying species because bacteria usually reproduce by employing asexual reproduction. Methods of sexual reproduction in bacteria such as conjugation, transformation, and transduction do not correspond to true interbreeding. As a result, while classifying bacteria, numerous other characteristics such as molecular homology, biochemical, physiological, ecological, and morphological traits are taken into account. Thus, the meaning of species differs between higher organisms and microorganisms.
Top Biology Exam Questions.