The Elements of Evolution (43-15-9) Plants & Animals

 Plants & Animals

Plants are in a unique position in Nature: largely self-sufficient autotrophs, consciously knowledgeable about their relationships with other species, and able to concoct chemical persuasions for those interactions. Conversely, as heterotrophs, animals are dependent on interactions with other species of macroorganisms to survive. Compared to plants animals are clueless.

The power of plants in their manipulative intelligence is met by the ability of animals to destroy. While plants create ecosystems, all that most animals do is ransack their habitats for sustenance and defense. Constructive keystone species that build without destruction, such as coral, are relatively rare exceptions.

Plants typically provide the biological substrate for symbiotic relationships. Mutually beneficial relations between a plant and an animal often involves other characters with less than benign intent. Acacia trees illustrate.