Nature's Chemical Warfare

A war is quietly being fought in nature. It does not result in any reports in the mass media or protests from popular movements. The battle field is nature. It is a war that knows neither political frontiers nor international conventions. The ecosystem consists of a complex web of interacting species, like plants, herbivores and carnivores. All are dependent, in different ways, on each other. Carnivores eat herbivores which, in their turn, have happily been eating plants. On the other hand many plants use herbivores for distributing their seeds or for pollination. The science, which deals with the chemical aids of organisms to influence their environment, is called chemical ecology.

Harborne, J. B., 1988. Introduction to Ecological Biochemistry, 3rd ed., Academic Press, London.
Samuelsson, G., 2004. Drugs of Natural Origin. 5th ed., Swedish Pharmaceutical Press, Stockholm.
Sondheim, E. & Simeone, J. B. (eds), 1970. Chemical Ecology. Academic Press, New York, San Francisco, London.


Last modified: 2021-11-25