Question Description

I’m working on a biology multi-part question and need a sample draft to help me understand better.

Emily has decided that the interactions between pollinators and flowers are just way too cool and has given up all other interests in order to pursue these studies. Unfortunately, this has proven to be far less than lucrative and she has taken up “camping” in the grove of oak trees in Tecolote Canyon and asking for “research funding” at the street light at Alta & Linda Vista. Through her observations, she begins to notice a few things and starts taking notes:

(a) The association between green sweat bees (Halictinae) and various composite flowers appears to be mutualistic. What are the benefits to both the bee and the plant?

(b) Occasionally it is unclear whether or not the association between Phlox and pollinating flies in the genus Anthomyia is actually a mutualism. What possible explanations could there be for the lack of a mutualistic relationship? In your answer, please include how this might be a lack of a mutualism for each side of the interaction.

(c) Siena is somewhat weirded out by Emily’s fascination with pollinating insects but believes that her fascination with caterpillar mutualists and parasites of ants is perfectly normal. Explain what phylogenetic pattern Siena is likely to find when examining the relationships between species that are mutualists with and species that are parasites of ants.

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