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I'm so confused about this... please help me.

This is a sentence correction question from the SAT:

Giraffes born with very long necks were able to stay alive when food was scarce, __________________.

Which phrase best completes the sentence?

A. and were therefore able to pass this desirable trait on to their offspring

B. and this desirable trait was passed on as a result to its offspring

C. so that their offspring could have this desirable trait passed to them

D. so, therefore, this desirable trait would be inherited by their offspring

E. and therefore have this desirable trait inherited in their offspring

The answer is A, but I don't understand why C, E and B are wrong?

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    C implies that the giraffes stayed alive for the purpose of passing the trait to their offspring; maybe true from some biological standpoint, but probably not what the giraffes were consciously doing. E uses the present tense instead of the past tense. B should use "their" instead of "its", since the subject is not a single giraffe. I hope this helps! – Vance Sep 1 '15 at 14:47
  • @Vance Post it! – StoneyB on hiatus Sep 1 '15 at 15:13
  • Heh, I guess that would be sensible to do! I hadn't quite twigged on the problem with B at first, so I was just going to leave C and E in the comment. – Vance Sep 1 '15 at 15:15
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    @Vance: is that really what's wrong with E? The have could be part of were able to have, where one can remove the repeated were able to by the rules for elision. Another thing that might be wrong with E is "inherited in" rather than "inherited by". – Peter Shor Sep 1 '15 at 17:28
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C implies that the giraffes stayed alive for the purpose of passing the trait to their offspring; maybe true from some biological standpoint, but probably not what the giraffes were consciously doing.

E uses the present tense instead of the past tense.

B should use "their" instead of "its", since the subject is not a single giraffe.

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