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Certain species of wasps are seen to frequently visit flowering fig trees. What type of interaction is seen between them and why?

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Last updated date: 17th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: Some insects such as the Yucca moth and Yucca plant have an obligate relationship with each other which means they are dependent on each other for their survival. The moth needs the flower of the Yucca plant to lay its eggs and the Yucca plant needs the moth to pollinate it.

Complete Answer:
Certain species of wasps visit flowering fig trees frequently to carry out pollination. Such pollination that takes place through insects is known as entomophily. But the wasps don’t visit the trees just to pollinate them, but to also benefit themselves. The female wasps lay their eggs in the ovary of the flower not only as a site for oviposition but also because the developing larvae get their nutrition from the fruit. Such a type of interaction in which both the members’ interacting benefit is known as mutualism.

Additional information: Let us look at how pollination takes place in fig trees.
- The inflorescence seen in Ficus is a syconium.
 - In this, the receptacle becomes swollen and hollow with multiple ovaries inside it.
- All these ovaries have their stigma pointed out in the direction where the wasps will come.
- When a wasp visits flower to flower in order to search for a suitable location for its eggs, pollen gets dusted on its body from the male flowers.
- And these pollen grains get transferred to the female stigma when the wasp is trying to lay the eggs.
- In such a way pollination takes place in fig trees.

Note:
- Inflorescence is defined as the arrangement of flowers on the floral axis of a plant.
- Species which are so closely related and depend on each other, evolve together i.e. coevolution.
- If anyone of the two members i.e. the wasp or the plant goes extinct, then the other one will become extinct as well.