On Symbiosis

tags: , ,

Those of you who haven't noticed this yet, The Onion has a really amusing article about symbiosis that you have got to read .. it might even make a really amusing "extra reading" for the classroom!

Devouring horsefly larvae embedded in her 3,000-pound partner's back, the tickbird seemed to agree that there was little fire left in their symbiotic relationship. At worst, she said, it feels like she and the rhino have been trapped in the same dead-end symbiosis for "countless millions of years."

"We just go through the motions, and there's hardly any communication," the tickbird said. "And we do it the exact same way every time. I get on top and take the parasites off while he just lays there."

"Feed off the embedded ticks on his hide, chirp when the predators come. Feed off the embedded ticks on his hide, chirp when the predators come. Where's the passion, the heat?" the tickbird continued.

The tickbird also accused the rhino of trying to make her "feel small." [story]

More like this

Welcome to Tetrapod Zoology ver 2: and we start with blood-eating birds.... To everyone who has come over from the blog's former home on blogspot, thanks for coming on over, and to new readers: welcome. This is a blog devoted entirely to discussion of the evolution, history, diversity, biology…
"That is Shadowfax. He is chief of the Maeras, lords of all horses, and not even Theoden, King of Rohan, has ever looked on a better. Does he not shine like silver, and run as smoothly as a swift stream?" - Gandalf In the Lord of the Rings, Gandalf rides upon a magnificent white stallion called…
[Pardon the delay!] Watching the fish tank in the pediatrician's waiting room: Younger offspring: Those fish are playing tag! Dr. Free-Ride: It kind of looks like tag, doesn't it? Younger offspring: Except since they don't have hands to touch each other, I think they're using their mouths. Dr. Free…
More on oxpeckers, on wound-feeding, and on the delightful habit of eating earwax... In the previous post we looked at the behaviour of oxpeckers: the idea that they feed on blood and the other tissues of their hosts was introduced, and we can now doubt the idea that they are always symbiotic '…

"The rhino said that he often feels like a victim of her nitpicking."