Interspecific struggle: forms and meaning

What worries people? Leave and save individuals with certain indicators and remove the rest, which are less adapted to survive in our harsh world. This process is called artificial selection, a very important role in this case is the person. But our task today is to get acquainted with the natural selection, or rather we will learn what the interspecific struggle is.

interspecific struggle

Symptoms that are useful to a person are not alwaysare necessary and important for animals. Nature is also capable of preserving certain species, and some can be eliminated. This process is called the term "natural selection", and interspecies struggle is one of the tools of this process. That is, animals compete with each other for food, water, territory and so on. This is how species evolve, they are forced to adapt to certain factors or simply disappear from the face of the Earth.

Charles Darwin

For the first time the term "interspecific struggle" we heard fromthe great scientist Charles Darwin. It is important to note what he understood by the words spoken. Charles Darwin spoke of the struggle for existence in a broad and metaphorical sense. Of course, many species of animals and plants directly depend on each other, but in times of hunger, living beings begin to struggle for resources that allow them to survive and reproduce their offspring. Interspecific struggle occurs between individuals of different species (for example, a zebra and a lion, a dove and a sparrow). In the first example, a lion can eat a zebra to satisfy its hunger, in the second example we introduced two species of birds fighting for subsistence and territory.

interspecies struggle for existence

You can give examples from the underwater world, sothe same for food and territory are fighting some types of fish. The most important factor for victory is reproduction of offspring. Those fish that lay eggs in larger quantities will sooner or later supersede the other.


The interspecies struggle for existence is divided into two groups:

  • Competition.
  • Direct struggle.

The first form is leading, it is heremanifest contradictions between living beings, which favorably affects evolution. Interspecific struggle, the causes of which can be divided into competition for biological needs and the same way to meet them, is also divided into:

  • Trophic competition.
  • The topical.
  • Reproductive.

The first species is manifested if the organisms are fighting forfood, sunlight, nutrients and moisture. For example, predators who hunt on one territory, competing with each other, evolve. They are aggravated by the sense of smell, sight, and the speed of running increases.

interspecies struggle causes

The second species is manifested between organisms, ifthey live in the same environment and are subject to the action of the same abiotic factors. This species is the main reason for developing devices for survival in poor conditions.

Reproductive interspecies struggle is common in plants. Those objects that attract color and smell have great chances for pollination by insects.

Direct fight

If during competition organisms enter intoconfrontation indirectly, that is, with the help of biotic or abiotic factors, then a direct struggle is distinguished by a direct collision of individuals. Here are the following types:

  • Fight against biotic factors.
  • Fighting abiotic factors.

The first kind involves fighting for food andthe possibility of reproduction, that is, also divided into trophic and reproductive. In the first case, we talk about the relationship between plants and herbivores, predators and prey and so on. This species is more common in the interspecies struggle, it is expressed in the form of cannibalism in the intraspecies. As a result, plants begin to protect themselves with thorns, poison glands and the like. Animals also develop protective mechanisms (fast running, heightened scent and vision, keeping a hidden lifestyle ...), and if we talk about fighting microbes, then immunity is developed.

types of interspecific struggle

The second species can be observed in birds, when they enter into open confrontation among themselves for the opportunity to reproduce in this area and to procure food for their offspring.

Sometimes it is not so easy to define competition orabout direct struggle there is a speech. The line between the two concepts really holds very hard. There is one main difference: in competition, organisms fight indirectly, and in direct struggle they engage in battle between themselves.

Amendment in the theory of Charles Darwin

We examined the types of interspecific struggle thatare included in the general complex of the struggle for existence. It is also important to note that Charles Darwin presented this process to us as a consequence, caused by the contradiction between the desire for unlimited reproduction and limited resources. But scientists who later studied the theory made an amendment: the struggle is caused not only by the limited territory or lack of food, but also by the excessive aggressiveness of predators.

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