You are watching: What is the difference between qualitative and quantitative traits? in a population:
Almost every traits deserve to be separated into two distinct types or categories: qualitative and also quantitative traits.
In the basic language and also vernacular, a "trait" method any sort of top quality that someone has, such as a personality properties or the way a human being acts. However, the trait an interpretation biology-wise is a bit an ext specific. In biology, a characteristics is a characteristic determined by your genetic makeup. Hair color, eye color, size, blood kind and hairline space all examples of biological traits in people.
Qualitative properties are types of properties that loss into distinctive classes or categories there is no variation within those traits. These species of characteristics are likewise referred to as discontinuous traits and discrete traits, since there is no variation outside of the specific, aka discrete, trait classes.
It"s often less complicated to understand this point when looking in ~ examples. A common example have the right to be seen v Mendel"s famous pea tree experiments that spawned much of the modern-day understanding the genetics. Mendel discovered that these pea plants could produce either plants wherein the peas to be smooth or plants wherein the peas to be wrinkled.
Pea smoothness is a qualitative or discrete trait since there are distinct categories the trait deserve to be. There are no half-wrinkled half-smooth tree or semi-wrinkled plants. Lock are only smooth or wrinkled, i m sorry classifies the trait together qualitative.
Another typical example the a qualitative properties in humans is blood type. Humans deserve to have either Rh-positive blood or Rh-negative blood. If you have the gene that codes for the Rh protein in her body, then you"ll have actually a hopeful blood form (A positive, B positive, O positive, etc). If you lack that gene, climate you don"t have Rh in your blood and you"ll have a an unfavorable blood type (A negative, B negative, etc). There"s no "in-between" or variation external of those two discrete options.
These types of traits are also called continuous traits since they generally are shown on a continuous spectrum, or range, that variation. If qualitative traits room usually determined by solitary genes, quantitative traits often tend to it is in more complicated and are usually regulated by lot of genes. When traits are regulated by much more than one gene or by groups of genes, they"re dubbed polymorphic traits.
The elevation of an oak tree would certainly be an example of a quantitative trait in plants. The sawtooth oak tree, for example, varieties in height between 40 and 60 feet. That method these trees can be any type of height in ~ that range from 40.1 feet come 50.76 feet come 57.01 feet.
The trees don"t have height "categories" choose in qualitative traits and also the properties is watched in variation end a variety of options.There also isn"t a solitary "height gene." It"s figured out by a selection of genes.
Each of this traits are influenced by a wide variety of genes in facility interactions that recognize the physics result. And while you might look at someone and also say they"re "tall" or "short," those don"t indicate details or discrete categories of the characteristics as much as they show our own perspective on the person"s height.
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Elliot Walsh hold a B.S in Cell and also Developmental Biology and also a B.A in English literary works from the university of Rochester. He's operated in multiple scholastic research labs, in ~ a medicine company, as a TA because that chemistry, and also as a guardian in STEM subjects. He's right now working full time as a contents writer and editor.