Plants Sense Snail Slime to Avoid Becoming Supper
The thick slime left behind by garden snails tells some plants to become less tasty.
It’s an animal-eat-plant world out there, with the consumers and consumed engaged in a continuous evolutionary race to come out ahead. Scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have uncovered a new twist in one roadside weed’s strategy: It makes itself less palatable when it senses an herbivore lurking nearby, instead of waiting to be attacked.
Ecologist John Orrock, who studies how animals balance the need to protect themselves from predation with other needs, such as ...