The Impact of Genotype and Phenotype on Squirrel Coat Color
Genotype and phenotype play an important role in determining the color of a squirrel’s coat. To illustrate this, consider two independent genes (A and B) which, when combined, can result in four different coat colors: gray (A_B_), red (A_bb), black (aaB_), and yellow (aabb). Furthermore, a third gene (D) deposits color in the coat, while the recessive mutant (d) does not, creating an albino squirrel. An example of a possible genotype and phenotype of the parents who produced them could be A_B_Dd x aabbDd, with the resulting offspring being gray, red, black, and yellow squirrels. The interaction of genotype and phenotype can be seen through Mendel’s laws of inheritance (Meyer & Peters, 2020). According to these laws, genotype is determined by the combination of two alleles that an organism inherits from its parents (O’Reilly & O’Reilly, 2019). Phenotype, on the other hand, is determined by the observable characteristics of the organism (O’Reilly & O’Reilly, 2019). In the case of squirrels, the alleles they possess will determine the phenotype of their coat color. Cont….
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