Thursday, 19 January 2012

Figs and their wasps

I wrote about the figs and their wasps in my book on Memetics.

Figs show how symbiotic visitors can transform a flower into something rather different - a swollen enclosed garden. The inside of a fertile fig typically looks like this:

Over evolutionary time, coevolution with the enclosed wasps has transformed the fig's flower. This transformation acts as a parable for what has been happening with the human cranium for the last three million years.

The story of the fig and its wasp is told in a relatively recent documentary "The Queen of Trees". A preview is available - in the form of these videos:

It may well be pirated, but currently the whole documentary is available on YouTube here.

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