Frugivory, seed dispersal and regeneration by birds in south Indian forests
Balasubramanian, P.; Maheswaran, B.
Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society ust- 100(2-3): 411-431
Plants, unlike animals, are immobile and have little control over the choice of site Where they can live and grow. Over aeons, plants have perfected the art of survival in spite of this disability by steadily interacting with the animals in their habitat. The evolution of brilliant, attractive colours and endowment of the fruits with nutritious supplements such as proteins, lipids and carbohydrates, have appealed to the dietary needs of birds and mammals. Furthermore, the plant's ability to asynchronously produce fruits, for the assemblage of vertebrates dependent on fruits have made their dispersal possible. Plant-bird interactions play a pivotal role in maintaining the structural and functional integrity of natural ecosystems. Also, the interactions guide the process of evolution of biodiversity as well as ecological communities. On account of their unparalleled richness, tropical communities are treasure troves of biological interactions between plants and animals. Ecological degradations, as in shrinking habitats and fragmentation, necessitate a comprehensive understanding of the basic tenets of interacting entities, in order to evolve effective strategies to preserve and enrich our biodiversity.