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Name: Tina
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Question:
Why in nature do only the strong survive?



Replies:
Tina,

he why questions are always tough. But in this case, I'm not sure that your assumption (only the strong survive) is correct. Sometimes it is quickness, for example, rather than strength, that counts for survival. Sometimes the ability to hide may be important. Clearly there are only limited amounts of the resources all life forms need to survive, and thus there is going to be competition for these resources. With the exception of some bacteria (autotrophs) and the plants, all life depends on other life for food. Think about it this way. If a mouse, for example, has a litter of 10 young every six weeks, and all survive and start producing their own young, which survive and so on, pretty soon we'd all be buried in mice. It's been said that a single Paramecium dividing every 20 minutes would, in 24 hours, produce enough mass of Paramecia to equal the mass of the earth itself, if they all survived. This probably doesn't answer your question, but maybe it helps you to think about it some more.

Ethan Allen



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