The answers became clear to me this week. As a Weedpicker, I am always curious about the relationship between plants and animals. And while enjoying good looks at Green Lawn Cemetery's Merlin (Jim McCormac has that story), I started asking questions about trees.
In particular, the fruit of the Kentucky Coffee Tree, Gymnocladus dioicus has always intrigued me. It is so large, and heavily armored... what could possible eat it? Certainly, no birds have bills adapted for the task.
No wonder it did not add up in my brain, it has been a while since we've seen giant ground-sloths in my neighborhood, but by evolutionary standards- the 13,000 years since they became extinct is much like last Tuesday. The trees are just now starting to take notice, and may have to adapt to new seed dispersal strategies or die out. And that my friend, is the stuff of Mendel and Darwin.
To read the full article from American Forest go here.