Plant Self-Defense: Avoiding Becoming Caterpillar Food

Plants, as one of the lowest species of the food web, are often eaten. By everyone.

That doesn’t mean they like it.

In a new study published in the Natural Ecology and Evolution Journal, it was discovered that in order to avoid being eaten, some plants release a chemical that makes them extremely foul-tasting to caterpillars.

Described as “food-stressing” the caterpillars who would eat them, these plants are able to drive caterpillars to such desperation to avoid eating the plant that they end up eating each other.

Caterpillars have an endless appetite, forcing them to constantly be in search of food. But when their main source is deploying self-defence mechanisms strong enough to turn even the hungry caterpillars away, cannibalism ensues.

Neat or gross, there’s no denying nature has some wicked tactics up their sleeve!

To read more, please go to this link:

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