Reading Comprehension 13


Sharks have gained an unfair reputation for being fierce predators of large sea animals. Humanity’s unfounded fear and hatred of these ancient creatures is leading to a worldwide slaughter that may result in the extinction of many coastal shark species. The shark is the 5 victim of a warped attitude of wildlife protection; we strive only to protect the beautiful, non-threatening parts of our environment. And, in our efforts to restore only non-threatening parts of our earth, we ignore other important parts.10 A perfect illustration of this attitude is the contrasting attitude toward another large sea animal, the dolphin. During the 1980s, environmentalists in the United States protested the use of driftnets for tuna fishing in the Pacific Ocean since these nets also caught dolphins. The environmentalists generated enough political and economic 15 pressure to prevent tuna companies from buying tuna that had been caught in driftnets. In contrast to this effort on behalf of the dolphins, these same environmentalists have done very little to help save the Pacific Ocean sharks whose population has decreased nearly to the point of extinction. Sharks are among the oldest creatures 20 on earth, having survived in the seas for more than 350 million years. They are extremely efficient animals, feeding on wounded or dying animals, thus performing an important role in nature of weeding out the weaker animals in a species. Just the fact that species such as the Great White Shark have managed to live in the oceans 25 for so many millions of years is enough proof of their efficiency and adaptability to changing environments. It is time for us humans, who may not survive another 1,000 years at the rate we are damaging the planet, to cast away our fears and begin considering the protection of sharks as an important part of a program for protection of all 30 our natural environment.


1. With which of the following topics is this passage primarily concerned?

(A) Sharks are efficient creatures with bad reputations.
(B) Sharks are some of the oldest creatures on earth.
(C) Sharks illustrate a problem in wildlife protection.
(D) The campaign to save dolphins was not extended to save sharks.
2. Which of the following is most similar to the meaning of the word “warped” in line 5?
(A) distorted
(B) wasteful
(C) extravagant
(D) wanton
3. In line 12, the word “protested” is closest in meaning to which of the following?
(A) prescribed
(B) objected to
(C) protected
(D) reflected on
4. In line 14, the word “generated” could be best replaced by
(A) consumed
(B) absorbed
(C) designated
(D) produced
5. How did environmentalists manage to protect dolphins?
(A) They prevented fishermen from selling them for meat.
(B) They pressured fishermen into protecting dolphins by law.
(C) They brought political pressure against tuna companies.
(D) They created sanctuaries where dolphin fishing was not allowed.
6. About how long have sharks lived on the planet?
(A) 25 million years
(B) 150 million years
(C) 350 million years
(D) 500 million years
7. The author uses the phrase “weeding out” in line 22-23 to mean
(A) strengthening something that is weak
(B) feeding something that is hungry
(C) encouraging something that is efficient
(D) getting rid of something that is unwanted
8. In line 24, the phrase “managed to live” is used to infer that
(A) surviving was difficult
(B) migration was common
(C) procreation was expanding
(D) roaming was necessary
9. The word “proof” in line 25 could be best replaced by which of the following?
(A) characteristic
(B) evidence
(C) praise
(D) customary
10. In line 28, the phrase “to cast away” means most nearly
(A) to throw off
(B) to bring in
(C) to see through
(D) to set apart
11. What is the author’s tone in this passage?
(A) explanatory
(B) accusatory
(C) gentle
(D) proud
12. Which of the following best describes the organization of this passage?
(A) order of importance
(B) cause and effect
(C) statement and example
(D) chronological order

ANSWER KEY: 

1. C          2. A             3. B                4. D                   5. C                    6. C                       7. D                    8. A             9. B         10. A         11. B        12.C

Good luck and success !

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