Ecology: What Is Mutualism | Biology for All | FuseSchool - Lake Harding Association

Ecology: What Is Mutualism | Biology for All | FuseSchool

Ecology: What Is Mutualism | Biology for All | FuseSchool

By Micah Moen 1 Comment September 12, 2019

Mutualism is a type of interspecific interaction,
so it is an interaction between individuals of different species. Mutualism is where both organisms gain a fitness
benefit from an interaction with one another. Mutualism is a type of symbiosis: symbiosis
translates as ‘living together’ and it just means the long-term interactions between
two or more different species who are in close proximity. Oxpecker birds have a mutualistic relationship
with buffalo. The birds eat ticks and their larvae from
the skin of the buffalo. The buffalo is getting cleaned and the birds
are getting food, both species are gaining a benefit and so this is an example of mutualism. Another example of mutualism is the interaction
between zebras and bacteria. Zebras rely on certain bacteria in their gut:
the zebras benefit from the enzyme called cellulase that the bacteria produce, which
helps them to break down their food. In turn the bacteria benefit by having a stable
supply of nutrients by living in the host’s intestine.

1 Comment found



Good concepts and video, but I thought it was found recently that oxpeckers were actually drawing blood of the ox and therefore are not mutualistic.


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