predation

Primary consumer being preyed upon by a carnivorous consumer, top of the food chain, and its offspring.

Predation or predation is a disharmonious interspecific ecological relationship in which an animal species (predator / hunter), resulting from the survival instinct, captures and kills another species of lower trophic level (prey), in order to feed on it.

This type of relationship occurs mainly in carnivorous beings (lion, wolf, tiger, man), but also among herbivores. In this case, called herbivorism, well characterized by the attack of ants, locusts or caterpillars on a crop, quickly destroying a crop.

Thus, the predatory act from a particular point of view, favors the predatory species, while the prey are disadvantaged. And from an ecological point of view, predaism represents a mechanism that regulates population density through a food chain, controlling the amount of individuals in a given community.

However, evolutionarily, adaptations developed by prey used as a defense against predation emerged, for example, mimicry, camouflage and aposematism (warning colors), ways that allow prey to escape an attack and thus prolong the existence of their genotype.

An interesting aspect of predation occurs with regard to trophic inversion, related to the habit of some organisms in producing principles (autotrophs), feeding on consumer organisms. A particular case involving carnivorous plants, with adaptations and enzymatic metabolic reactions capable of degrading small insects.

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