Poison berries? (fwd)

Janice M. Glime jmglime at MTU.EDU
Mon Oct 23 22:17:19 EST 1995

More than a week ago, this listserv published a question from Stacy Ciufo
about poison fruits.  I decided to use her question as a bonus thinking
question to challenge my first-term freshmen majors.  I was hoping to
collect the answers from the experts out there as they arrived on the net,
but the only one I have seen is the one from Ross Koning.  If anyone has
collected answers, I would love to have them to forward to my students. 
If any of you is interested in the answers from my students, perhaps to
compare to answers from your own students, let me know and I will send
them to you directly.  My statement to the students comes first, then the
original question from Stacy.  Unfortunately, I do not have any address
information on Stacy - the original question got lost when I hit a wrong

 > >  
> > Dear BL101'ers,
> >   This question just came over the net, and I thought it might be good
> > food for thought for you to earn some bonus points.  I have only
> > had two takers on my last bonus question.  Here is a chance for
> > those of you who don't like to talk in class.  After you have a
> > chance to respond, I will forward the suggestions that come over
> > the net.  Take into consideration the energy lost in making a large
> > fruit and ask yourself why the plant might then make it poisonous. 
> > List all the hypotheses you can think of.  I will post answers next week.
> >   I'm rooting for you on the test tomorrow night!  Have a good night.
> > Janice
> > jmglime
> > 
> > > 
> > > Would one of you plant folks be so kind as to answer this question:
> > > 
> > > I believe that plants produce fruits to ensure that their seeds are
> > > scattered around - berries that are edible and tasty will be eaten
> > > and excreted elsewhere.
> > > 
> > > Why then, do some plants go through the biochemical trouble to
> > > produce POISON fruit (such as berries)?
> > > 
> > > Any insight will be appreciated.
> > > 
> > > Thanks!
> > > 
> > > Stacy Ciufo
> > > 
 Janice M. Glime
 Department of Biological Sciences
 Michigan Technological University
 Houghton, MI 49931-1295
 jmglime at mtu.edu
 FAX 906-487-3167 

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