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I’m trying to study for my Writing course and I need some help to understand this question.
Regarding “There are many more kinds of parasitic than non-parasitic organisms. Organisms that are not parasites are hosts of parasites. Most parasites are, themselves, hosts to other parasites.” At first-did not coincide with my previous perception of the various types of organisms in the world as I have only associated the word parasite with a negative connotation. However, since reading Module 4c-Defining Parasites I have learned that parasitism is in fact all around us and means more than direct death or benefiting at the expense of another. I found it interesting that parasitism is not only a type of symbiosis but that there are three different kinds. Commensalism-which an organism benefits from the host but the host is not impacted nor affected. Parasitism- the type which comes to mind when thinking of an organism that does benefit at the expense of the other. Then there is Mutualism-when both partners benefit from the relationship.
I personally loved the example of how Capuchin Monkeys pollinate flowers with residual nectar that they eat from the flowers as they swing from branch to branch. Mutualist symbiosis makes the most sense to me evolutionarily specifically trophic mutualism because that is when one resource is exchanged for another. According to Influence of evolution on the stability of ecological communities- graphs showed that communities that contain trophic mutualism interactions tend to be more stable compared to other interaction types which show that relationships that benefit from one another create a stable ecosystem which then provides an environment that is more likely to evolve over time.
The statement “There are more kinds of parasitic than non-parasitic organisms.” also makes sense to me evolutionarily because understanding the relationship between the three types of symbiosis and the way they interact with various ecosystems can help ensure that life continues to evolve. For example, Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi have symbiotic relationships with a vast majority of plants and provide nutrients, water, and resistance to pathogens and the plant provides carbon. After learning more about the types of symbiosis I have expanded my perception and have realized how commensalism, mutualism, and parasitism foster growth within every ecosystem and play a vital role in evolution.