Using Hardy Weinberg theory, can a population be in equilibrium?     

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pacorz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Hardy Weinberg theory states that the genetic makeup of a population will be in equilibrium only if it meets a specific set of conditions. However the list of conditions is long and most of them are rarely met in nature.

If the population is breeding completely randomly, has no immigration or emigration, is very large (some think that it may have to be infinite), is not subject to natural selection, and has no mutations ocurring, then it may be in equilibrium. However in the real world no population is infinitely large, all populations are subject to natural selection, and some level of random mutation is considered normal, so we must conclude that the Hardy Weinberg equilibrium is an ideal situation which never actually occurs.