Seed dispersal: Directed deterrence by capsaicin in chillies

@article{Tewksbury2001SeedDD,
  title={Seed dispersal: Directed deterrence by capsaicin in chillies},
  author={J. Tewksbury and G. Nabhan},
  journal={Nature},
  year={2001},
  volume={412},
  pages={403-404}
}
The primary function of ripe, fleshy fruit is to facilitate seed dispersal by attracting consumers, yet many fruits contain unpleasant-tasting chemicals that deter consumption by vertebrates. Here we investigate this paradox in the chilli (Capsicum) and find that capsaicin, the chemical responsible for the fruit's peppery heat, selectively discourages vertebrate predators without deterring more effective seed dispersers. 
225 Citations

Topics from this paper

Evolutionary ecology of pungency in wild chilies
  • 119
  • PDF
Capsaicin: Tailored Chemical Defence Against Unwanted “Frugivores”
  • 13
Active pollinator choice by Heliconia 'fits the bill'.
  • PDF
Seed Dispersal: The Blind Bomb Maker
  • K. Burns
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Current Biology
  • 2012
  • 3
  • PDF
Intraspecific Directed Deterrence by the Mustard Oil Bomb in a Desert Plant
  • 40
  • PDF
A field test of the directed deterrence hypothesis in two species of wild chili
  • 77
  • PDF
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-8 OF 8 REFERENCES