Mutualism Involving Three-Toed Sloths

WHAT ARE SLOTHS? Sloths are the slowest mammals on earth. In fact, the well know adjective, slothful which means lazy or idle, is named for these creatures, that do pretty much everything at an almost comically slow pace. One of the reasons for the sloth’s slow paced life is its diet. The three-toed sloth lives mainly on leaves from the

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Heterotrophic Plants

Most plants make their own food using photosynthesis. We call them autotrophic. But there are a small number of plants that lack the ability to feed themselves due to the absence of chlorophyll. Heterotrophic plants must rely on other organisms to supply them with food. Of the approximately 400,000 species of plants on earth, there are only around 3,000 that

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Mutualism between Fungi & Plant Roots

We tend to see the life of a plant as a simple, solitary effort of converting sunshine to energy and gathering nutrients and water from the soil. However, just below ground there is often the support of hidden allies. Most plants are masters of photosynthesis (autotrophic). They are able to take sunlight and convert it into carbohydrates, which the plants

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Stoney Corals

Header Photo: Courtesy of Malcolm Browne (flickr)   The Great Barrier Reef, located just off the coast of Australia, earns its name, with the word “great” meaning both large and extraordinary. Here are some reasons why: The Great Barrier Reef is the worlds most immense coral reef system It is the world’s largest single structure built by living organisms It is listed

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Mutualistic Symbiotic Relationships of the Maned Wolf

Header Photo: Maned wolf in the grass, Courtesy of Tambako The Jaguar (flickr) When thinking of the natural world, we often focus on the fight for survival, the battle of prey versus predator or the competition for available food or territory. And yet there are many examples of different species working together for the benefit of both. This is known

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