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(A) Otters have long, thin bodies and short legs - ideal for pushing through dense undergrowth or hunting in tunnels. An adult male may be up to 4 feet long and 301bs. Females are smaller typically. The Eurasian otter's nose is about the smallest among the otter species and has a characteristic shape described as a shallow 'W. An otter's tail (or rudder, or stem) is stout at the base and tapers towards the tip where it flattens. This forms part of the propulsion unit when swimming fast under water. Otter fur consists of two types of hair: stout guard hairs which form a waterproof outer covering, and under-fur which is dense and fine, equivalent to an otter's thermal underwear. The fur must be kept in good condition by grooming. Sea water reduces the waterproofing and insulating qualities of otter fur when salt water in the fin. This is why freshwater pools are important to otters living on the coast. After swimming, they wash the salts off in the pools and then squirm on the ground to rub dry against vegetation.
(B) Scent is used for hunting on land, for communication and for detecting danger, otterine sense of smell is likely to be similar in sensitivity to dogs. Otters have small eyes and are probably short-sighted on land. But they do have the ability to modify the shape of the lens in the eye to make it more spherical, and hence overcome the refraction of water. In clear water and good light, otters can hunt fish by sight. The otter's eyes and nostrils are placed high on its head so that it can see and breathe even when the rest of the body is submerged. Underwater, the otter holds its legs against the body, except for steering, and the hind end of the body is flexed in a series of vertical undulations. River otters have webbing which extends for much of the length of each digit, though not to the very end. Giant otters and sea otters have even more prominent webs, while the Asian short-clawed otter has no webbing - they hunt for shrimps in ditches and paddy fields so they don't need the swimming speed. Otter ears are tiny for streamlining, but they still have very sensitive hearing and are protected by valves which close them against water pressure.
(C) A number of constraints and preferences limit suitable habitats for otters. Water is a must and the rivers must be large enough to support a healthy population of fish. Being such shy and wary creatures, they will prefer territories where man's activities do not impinge greatly. Of course, there must also be no other otter already in residence - this has only become significant again recently as populations start to recover. Coastal otters have a much more abundant food supply and ranges for males and females may be just a few kilometres of coastline. Because male ranges are usually larger a male otter may find his range overlaps with two or three females - not bad! Otters will eat anything that they can get hold of - there are records of sparrows and snakes and slugs being gobbled. Apart from fish the most common prey are crayfish, crabs and water birds. Small mammals are occasionally taken, most commonly rabbits but sometimes even moles.
(D) Eurasian otters will breed any time where food is readily available. In places where condition is more severe, Sweden for example where the lakes are frozen for much of winter, cubs are born in spring. This ensures that they are well grown before severe weather returns. In the Shetlands, cubs are born in summer when fish is more abundant. Though otters can breed every year, some do not. Again, this depends on food availability. Other factors such as food range and quality of the female may have an effect. Gestation for Eurasian otter is 63 days, with the exception of Lutra canadensis whose embryos may undergo delayed implantation. Otters normally give birth in more secure dens to avoid disturbances. Nests are lined with bedding to keep the cubs warm while mummy is away feeding.
(E) Otters normally give birth in more secure dens to avoid disturbances. Nests are lined with bedding (reeds, waterside plants, grass) to keep the cubs warm while is away feeding. Litter Size varies between 1 and 5. For some unknown reason, coastal otters tend to produce smaller litters. At five weeks they open their eyes - a tiny cub of 700g. At seven weeks they're weaned onto solid food. At ten weeks they leave the nest, blinking into daylight for the first time. After three months they finally meet the water and learn to swim. After eight months they are hunting, though the mother still provides a lot of food herself. Finally, after nine months she can chase them all away with a clear conscience, and relax - until the next fella shows up.
(F) The plight of the British otter was recognised in the early 60s, but it wasn't until the late 70s that the chief cause was discovered. Pesticides, such as dieldrin and aldrin, were first used in 1955 in agriculture and other industries - these chemicals are very persistent and had already been recognised as the cause of huge declines in the population of peregrine falcons, sparrow hawks and other predators. The pesticides entered the river systems and the food chain - microorganisms, fish and finally otters, with every step increasing the concentration of the chemicals. From 1962 the chemicals were phased out, but while some species recovered quickly, otter numbers did not - and continued to fall into the 80s. This was probably due mainly to habitat destruction and road deaths. Acting on populations fragmented by the sudden decimation in the 50s and 60s, the loss of just a handful of otters in one area can make an entire population unviable and spell the end.
(G) Otter numbers are recovering all around Britain - populations are growing again in the few areas where they had remained and have expanded from those areas into the rest of the country. This is almost entirely due to legislation, conservation efforts, slowing down and reversing the destruction of suitable otter habitat and reintroductions from captive breeding programs. Releasing captivebred otters is seen by many as a last resort. The argument runs that where there is no suitable habitat for them they will not survive after release and where there is suitable habitat, natural populations should be able to expand into the area. However, reintroducing animals into a fragmented and fragile population may add just enough impetus for it to stabalise and expand, rather than die out. This is what the Otter Trust accomplished in Norfolk, where the otter population may have been as low as twenty animals at the beginning of the 1980s. The Otter Trust has now finished its captive breeding program entirely, great news because it means it is no longer needed.
Questions 1-9: The reading Passage has seven paragraphs A-G.
Which paragraph contains the following information?
Write the correct letter A-G, in blank 1-9 on your answer sheet.
NB: You may use any letter more than once.
Q.1. A description of how otters regulate vision underwater _______
Q.2. The fit-for-purpose characteristics of otter’s body shape _______
Q.3. A reference to an underdeveloped sense _______
Q.4. An explanation of why agriculture failed in otter conservation efforts _______
Q.5. A description of some of the otter’s social characteristics _______
Q.6. A description of how baby otters grow _______
Q.7. The conflicted opinions on how to preserve _______
Q.8. A reference to legislative act _______
Q.9. An explanation of how otters compensate for heat loss _______
Questions 10-13: Answer the questions below.
Choose NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS AND/OR A NUMBER from the passage for each answer
Q.10. What affects the outer fur of otters?
Q.11. What skill is not necessary for Asian short-clawed otters?
Q.12. Which type of otters has the shortest range?
Q.13. Which type of animals do otters hunt occasionally?
(A) Birds have many unique design features that enable them to perform such amazing feats of endurance. They are equipped with lightweight, hollow bones, intricately designed feathers providing both lift and thrust for rapid flight, navigation systems superior to any that man has developed, and an ingenious heat conserving design that, among other things, concentrates all blood circulation beneath layers of warm, waterproof plumage, leaving them fit to face life in the harshest of climates. Theft respiratory systems have to perform efficiently during sustained flights at altitude, so they have a system of extracting oxygen from their lungs that for exceeds that of any other animal. During the later stages of the summer breeding season, when food is plentiful, their bodies are able to accumulate considerable layers of fat, in order to provide sufficient energy for theft long migratory flights.
(B) The fundamental reason that birds migrate is to find adequate food during the winter months when it is in short supply. This particularly applies to birds that breed in the temperate and Arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere, where food is abundant during the short growing season. Many species can tolerate cold temperatures if food is plentiful, but when food is not available they must migrate. However, intriguing questions remain.
(C) One puzzling fact is that many birds journey much further than would be necessary just to find food and good weather. Nobody knows, for instance, why British swallows, which could presumably survive equally well if they spent the winter in equatorial Africa, instead fly several thousands of miles further to theft preferred winter home in South Africa Cape Province. Another mystery involves the huge migrations performed by arctic terns and mudflat feeding shorebirds that breed close to Polar Regions. In general, the further north a migrant species breeds, the further south it spends the winter. For arctic terns this necessitates an annual round trip of 25,000 miles. Yet, en route to then final destination in far-flung southern latitudes, all these individuals overfly other areas of seemingly suitable habitat spanning two hemispheres. While we may not fully understand bird’s reasons for going to particular places, we can marvel at then feats.
(D) One of the greatest mysteries is how young birds know how to find the traditional wintering areas without parental guidance. Very few adults migrate with juveniles in tow, and youngsters may even have little or no inkling of then parents’ appearance. A familiar example Is that of the cuckoo, which lays its eggs in another species' nest and never encounters its young again. It is mind boggling to consider that, once raised by its host species, the young cuckoo makes it own way to ancestral wintering grounds in the tropics before returning single-handedly to northern Europe the next season to seek out a mate among its own kind. The obvious implication is that it inherits from its parents an inbuilt route m ạ p and direction-finding capability, as well as a mental image of what another cuckoo looks like. Yet nobody has the slightest idea as to how this is possible.
(E) Mounting evidence has confirmed that birds use the positions of the sun and stars to obtain compass directions. They seem also to be able to detect the earth’s magnetic field, probably due to having minute crystals of magnetite in the region of then brains. However, true navigation also requires an awareness of position and time, especially when lost. Experiments have shown that after being taken thousands of miles over an unfamiliar land-mass, birds are still capable of returning rapidly to nest sites. Such phenomenal powers are the product of computing a number of sophisticated cues, including an inborn map of the night sky and the pull of the earth’s magnetic field. How the buds use then ‘instruments’ remains unknown, but one thing is clear: they see the world with a superior sensory perception to ours. Most small birds migrate at night and take then direction from the position of the setting sun. However, as well as seeing the sun go down, they also seem to see the plane of polarized light caused by it, which calibrates then compass. Traveling at night provides other benefits. Daytime predators are avoided and the danger of dehydration due to flying for long periods in warm, sunlit skies is reduced. Furthermore, at night the air is generally cool and less turbulent and so conducive to sustained, stable flight.
(F) Nevertheless, all journeys involve considerable risk, and part of the skill in arriving safely is setting off at the right time. This means accurate weather forecasting, and utilizing favorable winds. Birds are adept at both, and, in laboratory tests, some have been shown to detect the minute difference in barometric pressure between the floor and ceiling of a room. Often birds react to weather changes before there is any visible sign of them. Lapwings, which feed on grassland, flee west from the Netherlands to the British Isles, France and Spain at the onset of a cold snap. When the ground surface freezes the birds could starve. Yet they return to Holland ahead of a thaw, their arrival linked to a pressure change presaging an improvement in the weather.
(G) In one instance a Welsh Manx shearwater carried to America and released was back in its burrow on Skokholm Island, off the Pembrokeshire coast, one day before a letter announcing its release! Conversely, each autumn a small number of North American birds are blown across the Atlantic by fast-moving westerly tail winds. Not only do they arrive safely in Europe, but, based on ringing evidence, some make it back to North America the following spring, after probably spending the winter with European migrants in sunny African climes.
Questions 14-20: Reading passage 2 has seven paragraphs, A-G
Choose the correct heading for each paragraph from the list of headings below. Write the correct number, i-x, in blank 14-20 on your answer sheet.
List of headings
i. The best moment to migrate
ii. The unexplained rejection of closer feeding ground
iii. The influence of weather on the migration route
iv. Physical characteristics that allow birds to migrate
v. The main reason why birds migrate
vi. The best wintering grounds for birds
vii. Research findings on how birds migrate
viii. Successful migration despite trouble of wind
ix. Contrast between long-distance migration and short-distance migration
x. Mysterious migration despite lack of teaching
Q.14. Paragraph A _______
Q.15. Paragraph B _______
Q.16. Paragraph C _______
Q.17. Paragraph D _______
Q.18. Paragraph E _______
Q.19. Paragraph F _______
Q.20. Paragraph G _______
Questions 21-22: Choose TWO letters, A-E.
Write the correct letters in blank 21 and 22 on your answer sheet. Which TWO of the following statements are true of bird migration?
A. Birds often fly further than they need to _______.
B. Birds traveling in family groups are safe _______,
C. Birds flying at night need less water _______.
D. Birds have much sharper eye-sight than humans _______,
E. Only share birds are resistant to strong winds _______.
Question 23-26: Complete the sentences below using NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage. Write your answers in blank 25-26 on your answer sheet
Q.23. It is a great mystery that young birds like cuckoos can find their wintering grounds without ____
Q.24. Evidence shows birds can tell directions nice a ____ by observing the sun and theaters.
Q.25. One advantage for birds flying at night is that they can avoid contact with ____
Q.26. Laboratory tests show that birds can detect weather without ____ signs.
(A) Peter Brigg discovers how talc from Luzenac’s Trimouns in France find its way into food and agricultural products -from chewing gum to olive oil. High in the French Pyrenees, some 1,700m above see level, lies Trimouns, a huge deposit of hydrated magnesium silicate - talc to you and me. Talc from Trimouns, and from ten other Luzenac mines across the globe, is used in the manufacture of a vast array of everyday products extending from paper, paint and plaster to cosmetics, plastics and car tyres. And of course there is always talc’s best known end use: talcum powder for babies’ bottoms. But the true versatility of this remarkable mineral is nowhere better displayed than in its sometimes surprising use in certain niche markets in the food and agriculture industries.
(B) Take, for example, the chewing gum business. Every year. Talc de Luzenac France - which owns and operates the Trimouns mine and is a member of the international Luzenac Group (art of Rio Tinto minerals) - supplies about 6,000 tones of talc to chewing gum manufacturers in Europe. “We’ve been selling to this sector of the market since the 1960s,” says Laurent Fournier, sales manager in Luzenac’s Specialties business unit in Toulouse. “Admittedly, in terms of our total annual sales of talc, the amount we supply to chewing gum manufacturers is relatively small, but we see it as a valuable niche market: one where customers place a premium on securing supplies from a reliable, high quality source. Because of this, long term allegiance to a proven suppler is very much a feature of this sector of the talc market.” Switching sources - in the way that you might choose to buy, say, paperclips from Supplier A rather than from Supplier B - is not a easy option for chewing gum manufacturers,” Fournier says. “The cost of reformulating is high, so when customers are using a talc grade that works, even if it’s expensive, they are understandably reluctant to switch.”
(C) But how is talc actually used in the manufacture of chewing gum? Patrick Delord, an engineer with a degree in agronomics, who has been with Luzenac for 22 years and is now senior market development manager. Agriculture and Food, in Europe, explains that chewing gums has four main components. “The most important of them is the gum base,” he says. “It’s the gum base that puts the chew into chewing gum. It binds all the ingredients together, creating a soft, smooth texture. To this the manufacturer then adds sweeteners, softeners and flavourings. Our talc is used as a filler in the gum base. The amount varies between, say, ten and 35 per cent, depending on the type of gum. Fruit flavoured chewing gum, for example, is slightly acidic and would react with the calcium carbonate that the manufacturer might otherwise use as a filler. Talc, on the other hand, makes an ideal filler because it’s non-reactive chemically. In the factory, talc is also used to dust the gum base pellets and to stop the chewing gum sticking during the lamination and packing process,” Delord adds.
(D) The chewing gum business is, however, just one example of talc’s use in the food sector. For the past 20 years or so, olive oil processors in Spain have been taking advantage of talc’s unique characteristics to help them boost the amount of oil they extract from crushed olives. According to Patrick Delord, talc is especially useful for treating what he calls “difficult” olives. After the olives are harvested -preferably early in the morning because their taste is better if they are gathered in the cool of the day - they are taken to the processing plant. There they are crushed and then stirred for 30-45 minutes. In the old days, the resulting paste was passed through an olive press but nowadays it’s more common to add water and the mixture to separate the water and oil from the solid matter. The oil and water are then allowed to settle so that the olive oil layer can be decanted off (and bottled. “Difficult” olives are those that are more reluctant than the norm to yield up their full oil content. This may be attributable to the particular species of olive, or to its water content and the time of year the olives are collected - at the beginning and the end of the season their water content is often either too high or too low. These olives are easy to recognize because they produce a lot of extra foam during the stirring process, a consequence of an excess of a fine solid that acts as a natural emulsifier. The oil in this emulsion is lost when the water is disposed of. Not only that, if the waste water is disposed of directly into local fields - often the case in many smaller processing operations - the emulsified oil may take some time to biodegrade and so be harmful to the environment.
(E) “If you add between a half and two per cent of talc by weight during the stirring process, it absorbs the natural emulsifier in the olives and so boosts the amount of oil you can extract,” says Delord. “In addition, talc’s flat, ‘platey’ structure helps increase the size of the oil droplets liberated during stirring, which again improves the yield. However, because talc is chemically inert, it doesn’t affect the colour, taste, appearance or composition of the resulting olive oil.”
(F) If the use of talc in olive oil processing and in chewing gum is long established, new applications in the food and agriculture industries are also constantly being sought by Luzenac. One such promising new market is fruit crop protection, being pioneered in the US. Just like people, fruit can get sunburned. In fact, in very sunny regions up to 45 per cent of a typical crop can be affected by heat stress and sunburn. However, in the case of fruit, it’s not so much the ultra violet rays which harm the crop as the high surface temperature that the sun’s rays create.
(G) To combat this, farmers normally use either chemicals or spray a continuous fine canopy of mist above the fruit trees or bushes. The trouble is, this uses a lot of water - normally a precious commodity in hot, sunny areas - and it is therefore expensive. What’s more, the ground can quickly become waterlogged. “So our idea was to coat the fruit with talc to protect it from the sun,” says Greg Hunter, a marketing specialist who has been with Luzenac for ten years. “But to do this, several technical challenges had first to be overcome. Talc is very hydrophobic: it doesn’t like water. So in order to have a viable product we needed a wettable powder - something that would go readily into suspension so that it could be sprayed onto the fruit. It also had to break the surface tension of the cutin (the natural waxy, waterproof layer on the fruit) and of course it had to wash off easily when the fruit was harvested. No-one’s going to want an apple that’s covered in talc.”
(H) Initial trials in the state of Washington in 2003 showed that when the product was sprayed onto Granny Smith apples, it reduced their surface temperature and lowered the incidence of sunburn by up to 60 per cent. Today the new product, known as Invelop Maximum SPF, is in its second commercial year on the US market. Apple growers are the primary target although Hunter believes grape growers represent another sector with long term potential. He is also hopeful of extending sales to overseas markets such as Australia, South America and southern Europe.
Questions 27-32: Use the information in the passage to match each use of talc power with correct application from A, B or C. Write the appropriate letters A-C in blank 27-32 on your answer sheet.
NB you may use any letter more than once
A. Fruit protection
B. Chewing gum business
C. Olive oil extraction
Q.27. Talc is used to increase the size of drops _______.
Q.28. Talc is applied to reduce foaming _______.
Q.29. Talc is employed as a filler of base _______.
Q.30. Talc is modified and prevented sunburn _______.
Q.31. Talc is added to stop stickiness _______.
Q.32. Talc is used to increase production _______.
Questions 33-38: Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of Reading Passage, using no more than two words from the Reading Passage for each answer. Write your answers in blank 33-38 on your answer sheet.
Spanish olive oil industry has been using talc in oil extraction process for about____ 33 ____years. It is useful in dealing with difficult olives which often produce high amount of______ 34 ______ because of the high content of solid materials. When smaller factories release ______ 35 _____, it could be_____ 36 _____ to the environment because it is hard to _____ 37 _____ and usually takes time as it contains emulsified oil. However, talc power added in the process is able to absorb the emulsifier oil. It improves the oil extraction production, because with aid of talc powder, size of oil _____ 38 _______ increased.
Question 39-40: Answer the questions below using NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from the passage for each answer.
Write your answers in blank 39-40 on your answer sheet.
Q.39. In which process is talc used to clear the stickiness of chewing gum _______?
Q.40. Which group of farmers does Invelop intend to target in a long view _______?