Some birds have development an interesting reproductive strategy to deceive other birds and put the eggs in their nests, so foster parents are forced to feed other chicks. But what is behind this strange behaviour?
WHAT IS THE BROOD PARASITISM AND HOW MANY DIFFERENT TYPES ARE THERE?
The brood parasitism is a type of biological interaction between two organisms, in which one of them (the parasite) obtains resources from the other one (the host). In birds, the parasite obtains some benefits of parental cares from the host, developing a breeding strategy cold brood parasitism. The brood parasitism, although has been studied mostly in birds, also happens in other groups of vertebrates: for example in fish (Sato 1986, Baba et al. 1990) and some insects such as Himenoptera, Coleoptera and Heteropterous.
According the characteristics of each relation, there are different types of brood parasitism:
Optional brood parasitism: the parasite species is capable of breeding a part of its own offspring and also, to parasite other individuals. A example in birds is in genus Coccyzus (Cuculidae).
Forced brood parasitism: hosts breed all the offspring of the parasite bird, as happens in common cucko (Cuculus canorus).
Intraspecific brood parasitism: host and parasite are of the same species. This is a common strategy in colonial species and in other species with nidifugous chicks.
Interspecific brood parasitism: host and parasite are the different species.
In addition parasites are classified, by their specialisation on one or several host species, in general parasites (parasite large number of species) or specialist (only parasite one or a few species).
WHAT IS THE ORIGIN OF THIS BEHAVIOUR?
Everything suggests that the main focus of this behavior was decreased the parental investment (less cost) increasing the chance of success (major benefits), although this is not always the case.
There are several hyphotesis to explain the origin of the brood parasitism in birds:
Firstly, it is probably that parasites were displaced individuals that did not have any territory or lost their laying, and they try to lay their eggs in other nests to achieve greater breeding success (Sorenson 1998, Sandell y Diemer 1999).
Other hypothesis suggests that this parasitism could be a stable strategy for evolution of the population, which has similar benefits to breed its own offspring (Eadie y Fryxell 1992).
Finally, the third hyphotesis considers this parasitism like an additional strategy to the parent care and some individuals could be used it to reduce the sibling competition in their nest, or to reduce the number of chicks to feed without decreasing the breeding success (Moller 1987, Jackson 1993).
HOW CAN THEY PROTECT THEMSELVES?
Hosts have learned to protect their offspring about the threat posed by brood parasitism.
Common cuckoo (Cuculus canorus) and rufous bush robin (Cercotrichas galactotes) have this relation, the first one lay a egg in the rufuos bush robin nest that it will be born before other chicks and kill them, capturing all the parental care.
One of the main host defences against brood parasites is the recognition and rejection of parasitic eggs. Because obligated brood parasites need appropriated individuals hosts for reproduction, such host defence-mechanisms simultaneously select for counter-defences in brood parasites, causing a coevolutionary arms race between hosts and parasites.
A FIGHT CONSTANTLY EVOLVING
There is a particular case, the strategy of the great spotted cuckoo (Clamator glandarius) when is a parasite of the common magpie (Pica pica). The great spotted cuckoo lays an egg in the nest of common magpie and this chick possess adaptations to exploit the host parental care, it does not kill directly their siblings but has advantages in relation to begging behaviour and in the order of birth (cuckoo chick is born four or six days before magpie chicks.
Magpies have development a selective advantage to recognize and ejection of parasitic egg. However, it has been observed that cuckoos react to this behaviour returning to the parasitized nest and destroying it. This situation conditions the behaviour of the magpies in the future and they are forced to accept the parasite egg.
The result of this evolutionary fight is the mafia-type behaviour of cuckoo that leads to a co-evolutionary arms race between species to avoid parasitism, in one hand, and maintain it, in the other one.
Parasitism and nest predation in parasitic cuckoo (American Naturalist, 1995)
Mafia Behaviour and the Evolution of Facultative Virulence (Journal of Theoretical Biology, 1995.)
Magpie Host Manipulation by Great Spotted Cuckoos: Evidence for an Avian Mafia? (Evolution, 1997.)
Retaliatory mafia behavior by a parasitic cowbird favors host acceptance of parasitic eggs (PNAS, 2006)
Cover photo: Cuckoo chick in parasitic nest reciving food of host – http://www.guaso.com/bestiario_el_cuco.htm
Many horror films are based on organisms that have the ability to control the victim’s mind. In fact, there is some kind of real parasites and parasitoids which can control its host’s behaviour to guarantee its breeding. In this post, we will discuss some examples of those interesting parasites.
Parasitism is a type of predation where an organism (parasite) extracts a benefit at the expenses of another one (host). The parasites have lost the ability to synthesize some essential molecules that get through hosts, as well as parasitism is a mandatory relationship. There are many types of parasites, but the most interesting examples are zombies parasites.
The parasitic zombies have in common the ability to control and modify the behavior and physiology of the host to guarantee its breeding. Can you find them in different taxonomic groups (fungi, protozoa, nematodes, arthropods…). There are differents mechanisms to fulfill its objective, but the most important are: control the behavior of the host or induce him to suicide.
Glyptapanteles is a genus of parasitoid wasp that infects species of Lepidoptera Thyrinteina leucocerae in its larval phase. The larvae become caterpillars which grow and feed normally. In the final stages of development of the caterpillar, the pupae of parasitoid wasp (the metamorphosis between larvae and the adult stage) are released and settled next to the caterpillar. Before his release, the pupae excrete an endocrine substance that modifies the behavior of the caterpillar forcing him to protect the small pupae. caterpillar stops feeding and move until the adult wasp emerges. At that time, the Caterpillar dies from starvation and exhaustion.
Another example of interesting parasitoid wasp, is the species Hymenoepimecis argyraphaga infecting Plesiometa argyra (a species of tropical spider). In this case, the female sticks to the abdomen of the spider its egg. When the hematophagous (which feed on blood) larvae hatches, injected a chemical substance that causes the host to create a cobweb that is capable of supporting the weight of the cocoon, rather than a cobweb to catch insects. The larvae then feeds the host until it dies and then create its cocoon in the cobweb. Then, it will transform into pupae and eventually will emerge as an adult.
The above examples are parasitoids that they finally finished with the life of its host, but there are cases where once the parasitoid releases from the victim’s body, the host can continue to live. This is the case of the infection of the Ladybird Coccinella septempunctata by wasp species Dinocampus coccinellae. The female wasp injects the eggs in the abdomen of the Ladybird that incubates them inside. When the larvae have been developed (without touching any host’s vital organ), are released and form a cocoon that will protect the Ladybird. If the host gets to survive for seven days, when the larvae become adult Ladybug will recover and can continue with normal life cycle.
INDUCTION TO SUICIDE
Myrmeconema neotropicum is a nematode that infects tropical ants of the species Cephalotes atratus. These ants are completely black, but when they are infected with the parasite, their abdomen becomes reddish. This change allows the host camouflaged with certain berries and confuse frugivorous birds. In addition, this parasite is being able to change the behavior of ant and force her to rise to clear and unprotected areas to be located by the predators. The birds are hosts intermediaries, since thanks to their excrement, they get a greater dispersion of the eggs of parasites.
Another species of nematode, namely Spinochordodes tellinii, infects to crickets Meconema Thalassinum (Orthoptera) species. The larvae of the parasite are in the water and are ingested by mosquitoes (intermediate host). Mosquitoes are swallowed up by Crickets and once in the intestine, the nematode grows up to triple the size of the insect. When the parasite is adult, modifies the behavior of the host causing and induces him to commit suicide in the water. Thus, the parasite is free in its middle order to breed.
The flatworm or platyhelminth Leucochloridium paradoxum infects snails of the species Succinea putris. The host eats the larvae of the parasite that develops into the digestive tract of the host to give rise to the sporocysts (a kind of sacks that contain thousands of larvae, known as cercarias). The sporocysts are directed towards the tentacles of the snail’s eyes and causes a very exaggerated inflammation that resembles a caterpillar. They also induce a change in the behavior of the snail, leading him away from protected areas and forcing them to expose in places where it can be seen by the birds. The movement of the tentacles draws the attention of the birds that eat the snail and spread through their feces the cercaria (next state of maturation of the parasite).
Finally, but no less important, highlights the parasitic fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis infecting species tropical ants (Camponotus leonardi). The host ingests the spores of the fungus. Once in the digestive system, it induces a change in the behaviour of the Ant, forcing her to climb to high places where anchor with jaws. Once there, the spores germinate through the host’s exoskeleton to release their reproductive structures.
Today, however, the mechanisms used by these parasites zombies information continue to be investigated. Do you think that they seem to beings from a horror film? No, it is not science fiction. It’s our surprising nature.
Carl Zimmer.Mindsuckers. National geographic. November 2014.
William G. Eberhard. Spider manipulation by a wasp larva. Nature. Num 406, 255-256. Juliol 2000. ISSN: 0028-0836.
After the success of Evolution for beginners, today we’ll continue knowing the basics of biological evolution. Why exist insects that seem orchids and vice versa? Why gazelles and cheetahs are almost equally fast? Why your dog understands you? In other words, what is coevolution?
WHAT IS COEVOLUTION?
We know that it is inevitable that living beings establish symbiotic relationships between them. Some depend on others to survive, and at the same time, on elements of their environtment as water, light or air. These mutual pressures between species make that evolve together, and as one evolve as a species, in turn it forces the other to evolve. Let’s see some examples:
The most known process of coevolution is pollination. It was actually the first co-evolutionary study (1859) by Darwin, although he didn’t use that term. The first to use the word coevolution were Ehrlich and Raven (1964).
Insects existed long before the appearance of flowering plants, but their success was due to the discovery that nectar is a good reserve of energy. In turn, the plants found in the insects another way more effectively to carry pollen to another flower. Pollination by the wind (anemophily) requires more production of pollen and a good dose of luck to at least fertilize some flowers of the same species. Many plants have developed flowers that trap insects until they are covered with pollen and then set them free. These insects have hairs in their body to enable this process. In turn some animals have developed long appendages (beaks of hummingbirds, butterflies’ proboscis…) to access the nectar.
It is the famous case of the Darwin’s moth (Xanthopan morganii praedicta) of which we have already talked about. Charles Darwin, studying orchid Christmas (Angraecum sesquipedale) saw that the nectar was 29 cm inside the flower. He sensed that there should exist an animal with a proboscis of this size. Eleven years later, Alfred Russell Wallace reported him that the Morgan’s sphinxs had proboscis over 20 cm long, and a time later they were found in the same area where Darwin had studied that species of orchid (Madagascar). In honor of both it was added “praedicta” to the scientific name.
There are also bee orchids that mimic female insects to ensure their pollination. To learn more about these orchids and the Christmas one, do not miss this post by Adriel.
But many plants not only depend on insects, also some birds (like humming birds) and mammals (such as bats) are essential to pollination. The record for the longest mammal tongue in the world is for a bat from Ecuador (Anoura fistulata); its tongue measures 8 cm (150% of the length of its body). It is the only who pollinates one plant called Centropogon nigricans, despite the existence of other species of bats in the same habitat of the plant. This raises the question of whether evolution is well defined, and occurs between pairs of species or it is diffuse due to the interaction of multiple species.
The cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) is the fastest vertebrate on land (up to 115 km/h). Thomson’s gazelle (Eudorcas thomsonii), the second (up to 80 km/h). Cheetahs have to be fast enough to catch a gazelle (but not all, at risk of disappearing themselves) and gazelles fast enough to escape almost once and reproduce. The fastest gaelles survive, so nature selects in turn faster cheetahs, which are who eat to survive. The pressure from predators is an important factor that determines the survival of a population and what strategies should follow the population to survive. Also, the predators will find solutions to possible new ways of life of their prey to succeed.
The same applies to other predator-prey relationships, parasite-host relationships, plants-herbivores, improving their speed or other survival strategies like poison, spikes…
HUMAN AND DOGS … AND BACTERIA
Our relationship with dogs since prehistoric times, it is also a case of coevolution. This allows, for example, to create bonds with just looking at them. If you want more information, we invite you to read this post where we talk about the issue of the evolution of dogs and humans in depth.
Another example is the relationship we have established with the bacteria in our digestive system, essential for our survival. Or with pathogens: they have co-evolved with our antibiotics, so using them indiscriminately has favored these species of bacteria to develop resistance to antibiotics.
THE IMPORTANCE OF COEVOLUTION
Coevolution is one of the main processes responsible for the great biodiversity of the Earth. According to Thompson, is responsible for the millions of species that exist instead of thousands.
The interactions that have been developed with coevolution are important for the conservation of species. In cases where evolution has been very close between two species, if one become extint will lead to the extinction of the other almost certainly. Humans constantly alter ecosystems and therefore biodiversity and evolution of species. Just declining one species, we are affecting many more. This is the case of the sea otter (Enhydra lutris), which feeds on sea urchins.
Being hunted for their fur, urchins increased number, devastated entire populations of algae (consumer of CO2, one of the responsible of global warming), seals who found refuge in the algae nonexistent now were more hunted by killer whales… the sea otter is therefore a key species for the balance of this ecosystem and the planet, as it has evolved along with urchins and algae.
Coevolutive relations between flowers and animals depend on the pollination of thousands of species, including many of agricultural interest, so we must not lose sight of the seriousness of the issue of the disappearance of a large number of bees and other insects in recent years. A complex case of coevolution that directly affects us is the reproduction of fig.
As we have seen, coevolution is the evolutionary change through natural selection between two or more species that interact reciprocally.
It is needed:
Specificity: the evolution of each feature of a species is due to selective pressures of the feature of the other species.
Reciprocity: features evolve together.
Simultaneity: features evolve simultaneously.
Massa R (2007). Atlas ilustrado del origen de la vida: La evolución de las especies. Jaca Book spa, Milano.
Muchhala N. Nectar bat stows huge tongue in its rib cage. Nature (2006) vol. 444 (7120) pp. 701-702
Almost everybody could explain you more or less accurately what both parasites and predators are. But could everybody say you what a parasitoid is?
Animals (and especially insects) set up a lot of different symbiotic relationships, but often we find organisms whose relationship is somewhere between one and another (this is not a matter not of black or white!). In the case of parasitoid insects, we talk about organisms that establish a symbiotic relationship with traits of both predator-prey relationships and a parasitic ones.
Read this article to find out what parasitoid insects are, which is their origin and which kind of parasitoid insects exist. They are more useful than they seem to be!
Parasites, parasitoids and predators
Parasitoids are not exclusively insects, but the greater part of parasitoids belong to the subphyllum Hexapoda. For this reason, I will focus my explanation on parasitoid insects.
Before giving you further explanations, we must make the differences between parasitoids, parasites and predators clear.
In a parasitic relationship, parasites benefit at the expense of other organisms, the hosts, which are damaged in result. But despite of hurting it, parasites try to keep their hosts alive as long as possible in order to keep on benefiting from them, so parasites rarely kill their hosts.
In a predator-prey relationship, predators feed on a lot of organisms (the prey) throughout their life cycle in order to keep on developing. Unlike parasite organisms, predators don’t try to keep their prey alive so long, because the purpose of preying on other organisms is to obtain energy as faster as possible (for example, mantids, dragonflies…).
Finally, between parasitism and predation we find parasitoid organisms: insects with a parasitic larval stage that develop by feeding on a single host, which is usually another insect or arthropod. In contrast with parasites, parasitoids larvae kill their hosts to complete their life cycle; so, in which sense are they different from predators? The answer is that parasitic larvae only need to feed on a single host to reach adulthood. While parasitoid larvae are a parasitic life form, parasitoid adults tend to be herbivores or predators.
Origin and diversity of parasitoids
Parasitoid insects are present in many insect orders (Coleoptera, Diptera..), but the greater part of them is located in the Hymenoptera order (bees, wasps and ants). Because of that, in this section I will focus on talking only about the origin and diversity of hymenopteran parasitoids.
The most important and also evolved group of hymenopterans is the suborderApocrita, which includes wasps, bees and ants. In turn, the suborder Apocrita is divided in two artificial groups:
Aculeata: they don’t have a parasitic larval stage. The ovopositor (an organ that females use to lay their eggs) has been transformed into a sting that inoculates venom (organisms of this group are also called “stinging wasps and bees”).
“Parasitica”: they have a parasitic larval stage. Adult females of the group Parasitica have a long and sharp ovopositor they stab into different surfaces (wood, another insect…) so they can lay their eggs inside. In contrast with Aculeata, Parasitic hymenopterans don’t sting (they’re not venomous).
About 77% (66.000 species more or less) of parasitoid insects known nowadays belong to the Parasitica group, and most of them are wasps.
Origin of hymenopteran parasitoids
To understand the origin of certain morphological, anatomical or conductual traits of an organism, we often have to study the traits of a “sister taxon” or “sister group”, i.e. a group more closely related to the group in question than any other group (they share the most recent common ancestor).
The sister group of Apocrita is the family Orussidae (from the Symphyta suborder), which is also considered the most ancient groups of hymenopterans.
It’s believed that the common ancestor of Apocrita and Orussidae had first developed a parasitic life form among hymenopterans. This conclusion is based on the studies about ecologic traits of current Orussidae specimens: some of these organisms establish a positive relationship with some symbiotic xylophagus fungi (i.e. fungi that feed primarily on wood); these fungi usually develop inside a sort of tiny baskets located over the surface of ovopositors, so they can be inoculated inside the wood the Orussidae feed on when laying. Thus, fungi process wood to obtain a product that can be digested by Orussidae. However, there exist Orussidae specimens which don’t establish this kind of symbiotic relationship and parasite other specimens instead (especially the ones that possess symbiotic fungi). Thus, these parasitic Orussidae obtain nutrients by feeding on other Orussidae members and obtain more energy in result.
So, this being an ancient group it’s believed that the observed behavior in some current Orussidae members could be a reflection of the ancient origin of parasitism and parasitoids among the Hymenoptera order.
Types of parasitoids
Even if there are many ways to classify parasitoids, we can divide these organisms mainly into two groups: the ones that stop host’s development when laying inside it and the ones that don’t stop host’s development. Let’s talk about these two groups:
Idiobiont parasitoids paralyze or prevent further development of hosts when laying, so parasitoid larvae could have a reliable and immobile source of food at their birth.
Usually, idiobionts attack hosts that are concealed in plant tissues (for example, wood) or exposed hosts that possess other kinds of physical protections, so female parasitoids have developed long and sharp ovopositors that allow them to pierce these barriers.
Idiobiont parasitoids can be both ectoparasitoids and endoparasitoids (i.e. if larvae attack hosts from outside or inside host’s body), although mostly are ectoparasitoids. Moreover, parasitoid larvae feed on hosts only on the last development stages until the moment they reach adulthood.
Ectoparasitoid idiobiont females first inject venom into the host, to induce temporary or permanent paralysis, and then ovoposits on or near the immobilized host. In some cases, females that have just layed their eggs stay near the lay to protect it and also to prevent host to be eaten by other organisms.
Generally, idiobiont adult females don’t have any preference when looking for a place to proceed on egg laying, so larvae feed on a wide variety of organisms.
Most of parasitoid insects (and especially hymenopterans, dipterans and coleopterans) are koinobionts.
Unlike idiobionts, almost all koinobionts are endoparasitic and lay their eggs directly inside the host, which can be both exposed and concealed. However, the trait that truly differentiates koinobiont parasitoids from idiobiont parasitoids is the fact that koinobionts allow the host to continue its development while feeding on it. Thus, the parasitic larvae feed on the host while growing inside host’s body without causing it any damage…until the moment larvae reach the adulthood, when they emerge from the body of the host, causing its death.
Once the parasitic larvae are inside host’s body begin to grow to reach the pupal stage. Until this moment, larvae use different mechanisms to avoid or block the immune response of the host (for example, by placing eggs in hosts tissues where immune system doesn’t work). So, larvae can develop by feeding on host’s nutrients until the moment they metamorphose, when adult parasitoids emerge from inside the body of the host, killing it consequently.
Due to the close relationship established by parasitoids and hosts, koinobiont parasitoids tend to be less generalist than idiobionts when looking for a suitable host.
Ecological function of parasitoids
Parasitoids, like predators or parasites, perform an important ecological role because they act as natural regulators of other organisms populations. So, parasitic larvae kill a lot of organisms that could damage the environment or even other organisms if their populations grow excessively. Thus, the disappearance of parasitoids (just like predators or parasites) could entail an excessive increase of some animal populations (especially other insects populations).
For that reason, parasitoids are considered as a great biological control agent against different plagues in gardens and crops.
. . .
Notes from the subject “Biology and Biodiversity of Arthropods” taken during my Biology studies at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB).
Timothy M. Goater, Cameron P. Goater, Gerald W. Esch (2013). Parasitism: The Diversity and Ecology of Animal Parasites. Ed. 2. Cambridge University Press.
Vincent H. Resh, Ring T. Cardé (2009). Encyclopedia of Insects. Ed.2. Academic Press.
Donald L. J. Quicke (2014). The Braconid and Ichneumonid Parasitoid Wasps: Biology, Systematics, Evolution and Ecology. John Wiley & Sons.
Predation, parasitism, competition… all living beings, besides interacting with the environment, we relate to other living beings. What types of relationships in addition to those you know? Do you feel like to know them?
The group of all living beings in an ecosystem is called biocenosisor community. The biocenosis is formed in turn by different populations, which would be the set of individuals of the same species occupying an area. For survival, it is imperative that relations between them are established, sometimes beneficial and sometimes harmful.
They are those that occur between individuals of different species. This interaction it is called symbiosis. Symbiotic relationships can be beneficial to a species, both, or harmful to one of the two.
Detrimental to all the species involved:
• Competition: occurs when one or more resources are limiting (food, land, light, soil …). This relationship is very important in evolution, as it allows natural selection acts by promoting the survival and reproduction of the most successful species according to their physiology, behavior …
Onespecies has benefitsandthe otheris detrimented:
Predation: occurs whenone species (predator) feeds onanother(prey). This is the caseof cats, wolves, sharks …
Parasitism: one species (parasite) lives at the expense ofother(host) andcauses it injury.Fleas,ticks,pathogenic bacteria…are the best known, but there are also vertebrate parasites, likethe cuckoothatlay their eggsin the nests ofother birds, which will raisetheir chicks(brood parasitism). Especially interesting are the “zombie parasites”, which modify the behavior of the host. Read this post to learn more!
Parasitesthat liveinside thehost’sbody are calledendoparasites(such as tapeworms), andthose who liveoutsideectoparasites(lice). Parasitismis considereda special type ofpredation,where predatoris smaller thanprey,althoughin mostcasesdoes not cause thedeath of the host. When aparasite causesillness or deathof the host,it is calledpathogen.
Kleptoparasitismis stealingfoodthat other species hascaught, harvested orprepared. This is the caseof someraptors,whose name literallymeans “thief.” See inthis videoa case ofkleptoparasitismonan owl:
Kleptoparasitism can also occur between individuals of the same species.
Onespecies has benefitsand the otheris not affected:
Commensalism: one species (commensal) uses the remains offoodfrom another species, which does not benefitor harm. This is the case of beardedvultures. It is alsocommensalismthe useas transportationfrom one speciesover another(phoresy), asbarnaclesattached to the bodyof whales.Theinquilinismis a type of commensalismin which aspecies livesin or onanother. This would apply tothe woodpeckersandsquirrelsthat nestintrees orbarnacleslivingabove mussels.Finally,metabiosisis the use ofthe remainsof a speciesfor protection(like hermit crabs) or to use themas tools.
Both species have benefits:
Mutualism: the two speciescooperateor arebenefited.This is the caseof pollinating insects, which get nectar from the flowerand the plantispollinated. Clownfishand anemoneswould beanother typicalexample, whereclownfish getsprotection andfood scraps while keepspredators awayandcleanparasites of the sea anemonae. Mutualismcanbe optional(a species do not needeach other tosurvive) or forced(the species can not liveseparately). This is the caseof mycorrhizae, an association of fungi androots of certain plants, lichens (mutualism offungusandalgae), leafcutterants…
They arethose that occurbetween individuals of thesame species.They aremostbeneficialor collaborative:
Familiars: groupedindividualshave some sort ofrelationship. Someexamples of specieswe have discussed intheblogare elephants,someprimates,many birds, cetaceans …Insuch relationshipsthere are different typesoffamilies.
Gregariousness: groupsareusually of manyunrelatedindividualsover a permanent periodor seasonaltime.The most typical exampleswould be theflocks of migratory birds, migration of the monarch butterfly, herds of largeherbivores likewildebeest,shoal of fish…
Colonies: groupsof individualsthat have been reproducedasexuallyand share commonstructures.The best knowncase is coral, which is sometimesreferred to as theworld’s largestliving being (Australian Great Barrier Reef), but is actually a colony ofpolyps (and its calcareous skeletons), not single individual.
Society: theyare individualswho live togetherin an organizedand hierarchicalmanner, where there is adivision of tasksand they are usuallyphysicallydifferent from each otheraccording to their functionin society. Typical examples aresocial insectssuch as ants, bees, termites…
Intraspecificrelationsof competition are:
Territoriality: confrontation orcompetition foraccess to the territory, light, females, food…cancause directclashes, as in the caseof deer,and/or developother strategies, such as markingodor(cats, bears…), vocalization …
Cannibalism: predationofone individual over anotherof the same species.
And you,as a human, have you everthoughthow do you relatewith individualsof your speciesand other species?