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By Janine M. Benyus

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Some organisms combine the properties of animals and plants. For example, Euglena (Figure 1-10) is a motile, single-celled organism that resembles plants in being photosynthetic, but it resembles animals in its ability to eat food particles. Euglena is part of a separate eukaryotic lineage that diverged from those of plants and animals early in the evolutionary history of eukaryotes. Euglena and other unicellular | Figure 1-10 Some organisms, such as the flagellate Euglena (shown here) and Volvox (see Figure 1-3), combine properties that are normally associated with both animals (motility) and plants (photosynthetic ability).

Environmental interaction. All animals interact with their environments. The study of organismal interaction with the environment is known as ecology. Of special interest are the factors that affect the geographic distribution and abundance of animals (Chapters 39 and 40). The science of ecology permits us to understand how an organism can perceive environmental stimuli and respond in appropriate ways by adjusting its metabolism and physiology (Figure 1-9). All organisms respond to stimuli in their environment, and this property is called irritability.

Perutz, M. F. 1989. Is science necessary? Essays on science and scientists. New York, E. P. Dutton. A general discussion of the utility of science. Selected References Futuyma, D. J. 1995. Science on trial: the case for evolution. Sunderland, Massachusetts, Sinauer Associates, Inc. A defense of evolutionary biology as the exclusive scientific approach to the study of life’s diversity. Kitcher, P. 1982. Abusing science: the case against creationism. Cambridge, Massachusetts, MIT Press. A treatise on how knowledge is gained in science and why creationism does not qualify as science.

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