All living beings carry out exchanges of matter and energy with the environment around them, producing modifications in the support or terrain as well as in other beings with which they interact.
What does the pollination process consist of?Many times we have asked ourselves how nature maintains a fair balance between the parts and how some natural processes develop. Are there fundamental elements for the development of life? To give a possible answer, we will go into one of the most important processes in nature: pollination.
Plants and pollinators have been evolving and working together for millions of years, making it the clearest example of mutualism in nature. Food or protection for their offspring are some of the rewards that pollinating agents can obtain from plants, while the latter manage to multiply and produce both fruit and seeds.
When describing pollination, it is essential to stress that it is responsible for allowing the fertilization of plants and also the biological interaction that arouses most interest in the natural world. This is how the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations summarizes it: (pollination) directly relates wild ecosystems to agricultural production systems. The vast majority of species of phanerogamous plants only produce seeds if the pollinating animals have previously transported pollen from the anthers to the stigmas of their flowers. If this service were not performed, many species and ecosystem processes connected to each other would cease to exist.
How is the pollination process carried out?
The pollination task consists of allowing the production of seeds and fruits through the germination and fertilization of the flower's eggs. This is possible by transferring the pollen from the stamen (male reproductive organ) to the stigma -or receptive part of the flowers in the angiosperms-, where the mentioned fertilization takes place, which, consequently, will cause the flower's pistil to become a fruit and the eggs to become seeds.
What is the importance of the pollination process?
Why do we say that pollination is so important? Because, without this service, many of the processes and species that maintain a link between them within an ecosystem would not exist. And the best thing for us is that it is a completely free and highly profitable service.
There is a wide variety of pollinating agents that considerably enrich the natural system. The 25,000 to 30,000 species of bees, in addition to moths, flies, wasps, beetles and butterflies, represent the majority of effective pollinating species. Among the vertebrates, there are bats, non-flying mammals (some species of monkeys, rodents, lemurs, squirrels, olingos and kinkajous, the latter two being carnivorous mammals); and birds (hummingbirds, sunbirds, certiolas and some species of parrots). The phrase "everything in excess is bad" does not apply here: the best guarantee of healthy pollination services is the abundance and diversity of pollinators.