Tiny animals are boosting moss fertilization in a significant way, by delivering the plant’s sperm. The male moss swims the sperm to the female in a unique manner, through the dew. Mites and arthropods generally improve this whole fertilization process. This is according to former researches.
Little animals i.e., springtails are attracted by the sweet scent provided by the mosses. This is according to a particular evolutionary bryologist in Sweden. The scholar says that the fertile shoots in the mosses usually produce strong compounds, which increase the chances of fertilization. The springtails are guided as they move towards shoots which are productive.
The scents are not only powerful but have different types of compounds. Though both the mosses releases different scents, springtails prefer the female’s scent to the male’s whiff. As the animals wander around the mosses trying to get a fresh scent, the snagged sperm is delivered to the springtail. This is according to a researcher by the name Eppley.
Scent ingredients also differ in female mosses than in male mosses. This is to say that the female mosses are not pressurized by evolution forces around. Robert Raguso from Cornell University seems to understand this situation more.
Another issue which people come across is the springtails get in return after assisting the mosses fertilize? Eppley states that the animals seem to get sugary droplets after rooming around the mosses. Robert Raguso seems to be having a different opinion.
He says that the little animals seem to be getting a safe habitat from the mosses. He also says that mosses help the springtails escape their predators. Their microscopic nature makes most predators not to see them clearly.
The tests on fertilization have been conducted in only in two moss species. However, Eppley anticipates the issue to spread widely.