Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Industrial Melanism

In regions where habitats have been blackened by pollution and a pigment polymorphism exists in certain indigenous species, natural selection tends to favor those darker morphs that were less conspicuous in the altered environment. The best-known case involves Biston betularia, the peppered moth, first studied by R. B. Goldschmidt (1921) and later by Kettlewell (1956) in England.

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