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Arthropods are somewhat different than mammals being that they have an exoskeleton and they do not have lungs. They breathe through tubes connected to the outside of their bodies. First, the oxygen concentration in the air millions of years ago was approximately 30% higher than it is today and arthropods in that time period were much larger. It can be suggested that the size of the arthropods is limited in relation to the oxygen concentration in the air today. A second point to discuss is the exoskeletons. Physical size has its problems. It appears that when an animal doubles in size, its weight increases eight times over, but due to the weight-bearing capacity of this skeleton, the weight is only quadrupled and the actual strength of its muscles is doubled. Large vertebrates have skeletons that are disproportionately heavy compared to smaller vertebrates. The size has not been seen because the costs that come with the large size affect arthropods more so than vertebrates. There is a risk of injury with a large skeleton. The large size is further complicated during molting. The large size can’t compensate for all of the difficulties that come with a large skeleton. This greatly affects natural selection. It will favor the smaller sized animal in a population. Large size skeletons run the risk of abrasions and impact damage on the internal body. There is no cushion for soft tissues. The large size also affects the feet. The animal places all the weight when running on the smallest area of the foot. The lack of cushioning causes fractures related to the force of the impact. The testing of these arthropods could be done by raising several generations of beetles in an increased oxygen rich environment and see if there is an increase in the average size. The size-to-weight issue may be more difficult. It may be possible to raise several generations in a reduced gravity environment and observe the effects. Arthropods have evolved forms from familiar to outrageous to beautiful. As in their habit, arthropods have been able to diversify and adapt to surroundings with ease. Their size is the factor in the successful adaptations, diversity of species, and long generation intervals. Alterations with size would greatly affect all of these areas and have an impact on the environment.…...

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