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2 Biological Background     continued...

The simulator described in this chapter models what happens to these mutations as they are introduced into island populations. Under the right circumstances they will start to accumulate, and more and more individuals will acquire harmful mutations. Eventually the population will go extinct because too many new offspring will fail to survive to mating age.

In this section we will present the biological background of the simulation. We will discuss mutation rates, mutation effects, and other parameters that affect the buildup of mutations in fixed size populations.