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Thread: Evolutionary theory and stuff

  1. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Purpoh View Post
    Technically vines are not parasites. The definition of a parasite does not fit in with that of epiphytes. Also, I was referring only to the family of orchids on epiphytic parasites, not all plants.

    Adding on to Schmiggles comment, there wouldn't really be a reason for a parasitic plant to be carnivorous as it wouldn't need the additional nutrients. I didn't really think of that until just now
    Epiphytes aren't parasites because they don't negatively affect their host. They're commensals. I'd say vines are parasites as soon as they start to negatively affect their hosts (which they often do), because they benefit at the host's expense. But at some point it becomes semantic.
    The thing with carnivorous plants is that it takes a huge amount of energy to be carnivorous, which is why they fair poorly against pretty much anything else if it can survive in an area. Otherwise I'm sure they would be more widespread. So if a carnivore could be a parasite and not put as much energy into producing traps, it would have a huge competitive advantage. I suppose the only reason that hasn't happened is because any intermediate state would be hard to come by, given how specialized epiphytic Nepenthes are to carnivory or other forms of nutrient acquisition through the pitcher.
    The worst thing [about being an adult] is when you realize that oreos are just OK
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  2. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by schmiggle View Post
    Epiphytes aren't parasites because they don't negatively affect their host. They're commensals. I'd say vines are parasites as soon as they start to negatively affect their hosts (which they often do), because they benefit at the host's expense. But at some point it becomes semantic.
    The thing with carnivorous plants is that it takes a huge amount of energy to be carnivorous, which is why they fair poorly against pretty much anything else if it can survive in an area. Otherwise I'm sure they would be more widespread. So if a carnivore could be a parasite and not put as much energy into producing traps, it would have a huge competitive advantage. I suppose the only reason that hasn't happened is because any intermediate state would be hard to come by, given how specialized epiphytic Nepenthes are to carnivory or other forms of nutrient acquisition through the pitcher.
    My mistake, vines are commonly considered parasites. I didn't explain very well in my previous post is that if a parasitic plant put the energy into creating traps for bugs, it would be wasting it. It could have used that same energy to produce flowers, fruit, and reproduce itself. It doesn't seem there would be a reason for a plant to be both parasitic and carnivorous.
    Last edited by Purpoh; 09-12-2017 at 11:59 PM.

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