commensalism
commensalism [kə men′səliz΄əm]
n.
Biol. a close association or union between two kinds of organisms, in which one is benefited by the relationship and the other is neither benefited nor harmed

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com·men·sal·ism (kə-mĕnʹsə-lĭz'əm) n.
A symbiotic relationship between two organisms of different species in which one derives some benefit while the other is unaffected.

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      in biology, a relation between individuals of two species in which one species obtains food or other benefits from the other without either harming or benefiting the latter. (This kind of relation can be contrasted with mutualism, in which both species benefit.) The commensal (the species that benefits from the association) may obtain nutrients, shelter, support, or locomotion from the host species, which is substantially unaffected. The commensal relation is often between a larger host and a smaller commensal; the host organism is unmodified, whereas the commensal species may show great structural adaptation consonant with its habits, as in the remoras (remora) that ride attached to sharks and other fishes. Both remoras and pilot fishes (pilot fish) feed on the leftovers of their hosts' meals. A commensal relation based on shelter is seen in clown fishes (Amphiprion percula), which live unharmed among the stinging tentacles of sea anemones, where they are protected from predators. Numerous birds feed on the insects turned up by grazing mammals, while other birds obtain soil organisms stirred up by the plow. Various biting lice, fleas, and louse flies are commensals in that they feed harmlessly on the feathers of birds and on sloughed-off flakes of skin from mammals.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Commensalism — Com*men sal*ism, n. The act of eating together; table fellowship. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • commensalism — 1870, from COMMENSAL (Cf. commensal) + ISM (Cf. ism) …   Etymology dictionary

  • commensalism — [kə men′səliz΄əm] n. Biol. a close association or union between two kinds of organisms, in which one is benefited by the relationship and the other is neither benefited nor harmed …   English World dictionary

  • Commensalism — A titan triggerfish (Balistoides viridescens) creates feeding opportunities for smaller fish by moving large rocks too big for them to shift themselves. In ecology, commensalism is a class of relationship between two organisms where one organism… …   Wikipedia

  • commensalism — komensalizmas statusas T sritis ekologija ir aplinkotyra apibrėžtis Organizmų tarprūšinio sambūvio forma, kai vieni rūšių individai nuolat gyvena naudodamiesi kitos rūšies individais ir jiems nekenkia. atitikmenys: angl. commensalism vok.… …   Ekologijos terminų aiškinamasis žodynas

  • commensalism — noun Date: 1870 a relation between two kinds of organisms in which one obtains food or other benefits from the other without damaging or benefiting it …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • commensalism — the close association members of different species which live together to the benefit of one without harm to the other, e.g. Amphiprion with a sea anemone. See also symbiosis …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • commensalism — n. [L. cum, with; mensa, table] A symbiotic relationship in which one of the two partner species benefits, without apparent effects on the other species; see symbiosis, parasitism …   Dictionary of invertebrate zoology

  • commensalism — (kùo men sal izm ) A type of symbiosis in which one individual gains from the association and the other is neither harmed nor benefited …   Dictionary of microbiology

  • commensalism — noun A sharing of the same environment by two organisms where one species benefits and the other is unaffected …   Wiktionary

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