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Published on Jun 5, 2008
Like all living things, plants reproduce to ensure future generations. But since plants can't move from place to place, they need a way to transfer pollen from one plant to another. Wind is a major pollinator, but it acts unselectively. Insects, on the other hand, pollinate flowers with precision. The bright colors and strong fragrances of flowers attract insects. Once lured to the flowers, insects discover pollen and nectar. Bees, butterflies and other insects gather pollen and nectar to feed themselves and their young. As insects move from plant to plant, they transfer pollen from one flower to the next. Fertilization occurs and seeds are formed. Over time, flowers have developed colors, smells and shapes, that successfully entice insects. At the same time, insects have developed features and behavior that make them more effective pollinators.