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Do birds help plants grow?
Question Date: 2015-01-13
Answer 1:

Great question. There are lots of kinds of birds, and lots of kinds of plants, so there’s not easy answer, but here are a few ways that some birds help some plants.

One way is by spreading the seeds of plants. When birds eat fruits and berries, they move seeds away from the parent plant. Sometimes they do this by carrying a large fruit away to eat it. Sometimes they do this by eating small fruits and berries whole. When they defecate (poop) in another place, the seeds are also covered with fertilizer. When seeds grow near the parent plant, they may compete for water, light, and nutrients. When they are far away, they don’t compete with the parent or each other as much. There may have been diseases or other living things that attacked the parent plant. Birds may have moved the seeds away to a safer place.

Another way is by pollinating plants. Hummingbirds move pollen from one plant to another, just like bees do. Like bees, the hummingbirds get nectar from the plants when they visit.

When members of two different species do things that help both of them, we call this mutualism. They don’t know that they are helping each other, but it works out that way.

Bird droppings (poop) can also be a fertilizer when if falls on soil. This is not mutualism because the bird doesn’t really benefit by dropping its waste near the plant.

Sometimes birds might help plants indirectly. For example, an owl might eat mice that would have eaten a plant. Other birds eat insects that might eat plants.

Can you think of ways that plants help birds?

If you are interested in relationships between living things, you might want to study ecology.

Thanks for asking,

Answer 2:

Yes, some of them do. Birds like hummingbirds will eat the nectar in a flower, but some of the pollen will stick to the bird and be transferred to another flower. For plants to make new plants, they need pollen to go from one flower to another which birds help with. Also, birds will eat the bugs which can hurt the plant. Some plants like the spicy chili pepper have seeds that are spicy to mammals like humans, but aren’t spicy to birds. The plant has a spicy seed so that only birds will eat them because birds can spread the seed around farther since they fly.

Answer 3:

I never thought about whether birds help plants grow. I know birds sometimes eat plant seeds, and then they drop the seeds somewhere else, and the seeds grow, so the birds are helping the plants to grow in new places, farther away than the seeds would go if the birds didn't eat the seeds.

The internet says birds also help plants grow by eating insects that are eating the plants. And some birds carry pollen from plant flowers to other plant flowers. Many flowers need pollen to make fruit and seeds.

Plants have ways to make birds help them. Plants have bright flowers that birds see and fly to, and plants have leaves and branches for resting places and shelters for the birds.

Here's the internet site that tells about these things:


Answer 4:

They don't. Birds do spread plant seeds, though, which helps the plants reproduce, but they don't help them grow.

Answer 5:

Birds can help plants grow by spreading the plants' seeds, pollinating the plants themselves, and also by eating insects that are pests to plants.

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