Difference Between Predation and Parasitism

Key difference - predation vs. parasitism

Predation and parasitism are two types of interspecific interactions that occur in an ecosystem . Interspecific interactions are a type of interactions that occur between individuals of different species. Both predation and parasitism are deleterious interactions. The active organism in predation is called the predator, while the passive organism is the prey . In parasitism, the active organism is called the parasite and the passive organism is called the host . The main difference between predation and parasitism is that when predated , the predator kills the prey immediately, while the parasite does not kill the host organism . In some cases, however, the parasite can eventually kill the host organism.  

Key areas covered

1. What is predation - definition, characteristics, examples 2. What is parasitism - definition, characteristics, examples 3. What are the similarities between predation and parasitism - outline of common characteristics 4. What is the difference between predation and parasitism - comparison of Main differences

Key Terms: Ecosystem, Host Organism, Interspecific Interactions, Parasite, Parasitism, Predation, Predator, Prey

Difference Between Predation and Parasitism - Summary of Comparison

What is predation?

Predation refers to the act of one animal preying on another animal. The predator is the active organism during predation. The predator immediately kills the prey. Lions that eat zebras, foxes that eat rabbits, and bears that eat fish are some examples of predators. This concept can also be applied to plants. Bear-eating berries, rabbits eating lettuce, and grasshoppers eating leaves are some examples of predators in plants. Figure 1 shows a bear catching a salmon fish.

Difference Between Predation and Parasitism

Figure 1: A bear catches a salmon fish

Both predators and prey are developed in the same ecosystem. The predator kills the prey for food. To kill the prey, the predator should be stronger than the prey. The predator should have the speed, camouflage and camouflage. It should also have a good sense of hearing, sight, and smell. The predator should also be immune to poisons from the prey. Predators that eat animals have a monogastric digestive system. The prey also has properties that help escape the predator. It can have the speed, the good senses, poisons and thorns.

What is Parasitism?

Parasitism refers to the act by which an organism lives as a parasite in or on another organism. As the parasite grows, feeds and is protected on the host organism, the relationship is detrimental to the host organism. Although most parasites do not kill the host organism, some parasites can eventually kill the host. These parasites are pathogenic and cause disease in the host. Ectoparasites such as lice, mosquitoes and fleas, protozoa such as amoebas and Plasmodium, and worms such as roundworms , tapeworms and pinworms are parasitic in humans. Aphids and some insects are plant parasites that drink the juice. Figure 2 shows a mosquito biting a human .

Key difference - predation vs. parasitism

Figure 2: A mosquito bite

The parasites in the intestines of animals feed on partially digested food. In general, parasites are smaller than the host organism. However, once they enter the host, they have higher rates of reproduction. Some of the developmental stages of the parasitic life cycle take place within the host.

Similarities Between Predation and Parasitism

  • Both predation and parasitism are interspecific interactions between two different species in an ecosystem.
  • Both species in predation and parasitism develop in the same ecosystem.
  • Both predation and parasitism are harmful to one species and beneficial to the other.

Difference Between Predation and Parasitism

definition

Predation: Predation refers to the act of prey by one animal on another animal.

Parasitism: Parasitism refers to the practice of living as a parasite on or with another animal or organism.

relationship

Predation: Predation occurs between a predator and a prey.

Parasitism: Parasitism occurs between a parasite and a host organism.

Specialty

Predation: Predator can have multiple types of prey.

Parasitism: Parasitism is a very specific relationship.

Metabolic dependence

Predation: Predation lacks any kind of metabolic dependence on the prey.

Parasitism: Parasitism is metabolically dependent on the host organism.

size

Predation: Predator is generally larger and stronger than prey.

Parasitism: Parasite is smaller than the host organism.

Progression

Predation: Predator is very active and uses intense physical exertion to catch the prey.

Parasitism: Parasite is generally passive in its progression.

Kill the other

Predation: Predator kills the prey instantly.

Parasitism: Parasite does not kill the host organism immediately.

Completion of the life cycle

Predation: The life cycles of predator and prey are independent of each other.

Parasitism: Parasite needs the host to complete its life cycle.

Examples

Predation: Predation occurs between lions and zebras, foxes and rabbits, and bears and fish.

Parasitism: Parasitism occurs between mosquitoes and humans, lice in humans, tapeworms in cows, and cuscuta in plants.

diploma

Predation and parasitism are two interspecific relationships that occur between two different types of an ecosystem. With predation, the predator kills the prey immediately, while with parasitism the parasite does not kill the host organism. In general, a predator is larger than its prey. On the other hand, a parasite is smaller than the host organism. The main difference between predation and parasitism is the nature of the relationship between the individuals of the two species.

Reference:

1. "Predator-prey relationships". Evolution, available here . 2. "Parasitic Relationships". Evolution,available here .

Image courtesy:

1. "In many rivers in Alaska, bear predation for salmon can be high." By Mark Wipfli, Alaska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit. Public domain. - United States Geological Survey (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia 2. “ Mosquito bite from Flickr” by WildTurkey (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia

About the author: Lakna

Lakna, a graduate in molecular biology and biochemistry, is a molecular biologist and has a broad and strong interest in discovering things related to nature