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Animal Basic Form and Function

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The arctic fox is an example of a complex animal that has adapted to its environment and illustrates the relationships between an animal’s form and function. The structures of animals consist of primary tissues that make up more complex organs and organ systems. Homeostasis allows an animal to maintain a balance between its internal and external environments.

Animals vary in form and function. From a sponge to a worm to a goat, an organism has a distinct body plan that limits its size and shape. Animals’ bodies are also designed to interact with their environments, whether in the deep sea, a rainforest canopy, or the desert. Therefore, a large amount of information about the structure of an organism’s body (anatomy) and the function of its cells, tissues and organs (physiology) can be learned by studying that organism’s environment.

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