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Phenotypic Plasticity KAILEN A. MOONEY AND ANURAG A. AGRAWAL
 

Summary: 43
FO U R
Phenotypic Plasticity
KAILEN A. MOONEY AND ANURAG A. AGRAWAL
Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of an organism, a single
genotype, to exhibit different phenotypes in different envi-
ronments (Fig. 4.1A). Such plasticity is nearly ubiquitous in
nature and occurs in various animal and plant phenotypes,
including behavior, physiology, and morphology. Pheno-
typic plasticity may be observed as both adaptive and non-
adaptive responses to the biotic or abiotic environment,
though we focus on adaptive responses in interacting
species.
Phenotypic plasticity plays an important role in the inter-
actions between plants and herbivorous insects (Tables 4.1
and 4.2). In particular, plants and herbivores have traits that
are expressed in response to their interactions with each
other (e.g., defense and offense, respectively), and the
induction of these traits may subsequently alter the dynam-
ics of the plant-herbivore interaction. In addition, plants

  

Source: Agrawal, Anurag - Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology & Entomollogy, Cornell University

 

Collections: Environmental Sciences and Ecology