ACT English Practice Test 83: The Deer Fence

DIRECTIONS: In the passages that follow, certain words and phrases are underlined and numbered. In the right-hand column, you will find alternatives for the underlined part. In most cases, you are to choose the one that best expresses the idea, makes the statement appropriate for standard written English, or is worded most consistently with the style and tone of the passage as a whole. If you think the original version is best, choose “NO CHANGE.” In some cases, you will find in the right-hand column a question about the underlined part. You are to choose the best answer to the question.

You will also find questions about a section of the passage, or about the passage as a whole. These questions do not refer to an underlined portion of the passage, but rather are identified by a number or numbers in a box.

For each question, choose the alternative you consider best and fill in the corresponding oval on your answer document. Read each passage through once before you begin to answer the questions that accompany it. For many of the questions, you must read several sentences beyond the question to determine the answer. Be sure that you have read far enough ahead each time you choose an alternative.


The Deer Fence

A family emergency took us across the country for several weeks during the spring of year. We had left our first vegetable garden in the midst of early growing season, a time when emerging seeds is essential to ensure their vitality. Only a serious family matter would have such a departure.

We arrived home three weeks later an incredible transformation . Not only had the broccoli stalks and scarlet radishes come to bear fruit, but had decided to make a meal of our freshly sprouted crop. Deer do not use a freshly sharpened kitchen knife to remove delicious morsels from their stems. Rather, the animals gnaw at and shred the plants with their vegetarian teeth, leaving a mess of rejected foliage, hoof prints, and raw vegetable soup. 7

Our four-foot twig garden fence suddenly appeared comical and . There was obviously a lack of real needed to be remedied quickly. Even though we were now back home to stand guard, our absence had inadvertently established our kitchen garden as a food plot for the nearby wildlife. Deer are typically night eaters, and we weren't about to change our own sleeping patterns to accommodate them! Stopping the deer would

a tedious journey to the local hardware store, we assembled our army's ammunition: 350 feet of chicken wire; a box of four-inch screws; neon-orange plastic ribbon; and a heavy duty staple gun. Unrolling a 350-foot roll of chicken wire is no easy task. Constructing the bottom tier of the fence was ; one person unrolled the four-foot wide tube while another person followed behind, stapling the chicken wire to the existing fence posts. Tackling the second row was another story altogether. Since our original posts were a mere four feet high, each post needed a four-foot extension attached to it, followed by another round of chicken wire.

After hours of back-breaking work, we stood back to admire The big test would come when darkness fell. Deer can and will leap over an eight-foot barrier if necessary, but our saving grace would be the intimidation factor of our new fence, with its metallic outline glinting in the moonlight and neon-orange tags flapping in the wind.

It has been two months since the transformation of our little twig-fenced garden into a chicken-wired vegetable

prison. Each night we sit down delicious sweet corn, baked zucchini, tomato and cucumber salad, and snap beans. No broccoli or radishes this year, but we're already discussing the blueberry bushes and strawberry plants for next year. First, though, we will give some serious thought to the black bears that live in our woods.

1.

A. NO CHANGE
B. a
C. this
D. DELETE the underlined portion.

2. The writer would like to emphasize how critical her direct involvement is to the success of her garden. Given that all the choices are true, which one best accomplishes the writer's goal?

F. NO CHANGE
G. plenty of sunshine for
H. abundant rainfall for
J. casual observance of

3.

A. NO CHANGE
B. instigates
C. instigating
D. instigated

4.

F. NO CHANGE
G. by witnessing
H. for the witnessing of
J. to the witness of

5.

A. NO CHANGE
B. when we got back
C. after our arrival
D. DELETE the underlined portion.

6.

F. NO CHANGE
G. the local deer population, they
H. the local deer population
J. they

7. The writer is considering deleting the phrase "leaving a mess of rejected foliage, hoof prints, and raw vegetable soup" from the preceding sentence. Should the phrase be kept or deleted?

A. Kept, because it emphasizes both the destructiveness of deer and the importance of protecting a garden.
B. Kept, because it is relevant to the essay's focus on the construction of the deer fence.
C. Deleted, because it distracts the reader from the description of the deer fence.
D. Deleted, because this level of detail is not consistent with the essay's discussion of protecting a garden from deer.

8.

F. NO CHANGE
G. decorative, yet funny.
H. purely decorative and humorous.
J. purely decorative.

9.

A. NO CHANGE
B. deterring qualities, which
C. deterring, qualities, which
D. deterring, qualities that

10. The writer would like to indicate that protecting the garden from future destruction will be time-consuming and must be well planned. Given that all choices are true, which one best accomplishes the writer's goal?

F. NO CHANGE
G. not be easy.
H. take some time.
J. require a team effort.

11. Which of the following alternatives to the underlined portion would NOT be acceptable?

A. After
B. Soon after
C. Followed by
D. Returning from

12. Which of the following alternatives to the underlined portion would NOT be acceptable?

F. also daunting
G. as daunting a venture
H. daunting as well
J. just for daunting

13. Given that all the choices are true, which one provides the most specific detail and maintains the style and tone of the essay?

A. NO CHANGE
B. our newly erected, sturdy fortress.
C. the taller enclosure.
D. the rectangular area throughly enclosed by a chicken-wire fence attached to posts.

14.

F. NO CHANGE
G. Swift and beautiful leapers, the deer in our backyard should nonetheless be frightened away by the newness and appearance of the enclosure.
H. While they are swift and beautiful leapers, the newness and appearance of the enclosure should nonetheless serve to frighten away the deer in our backyard.
J. While they are swift and beautiful leapers, nonetheless the newness and appearance of the enclosure should frighten away the deer in our backyard.

15.

A. NO CHANGE
B. for the likes of
C. by the likes of
D. at the likes of