Trivia

Hard

Chili Peppers Evolved Specifically To Attract Which Animal?

Rabbits
Birds
Bees
Monkeys

Answer: Birds

Although humans have developed quite an appetite for spicy food and consume peppers of all shapes by the ton, most mammals don’t care for the spicy burn of a hot pepper. In fact, evolutionary pressure on ancient pepper plants is exactly how we ended up with the peppery burn in the first place.

Pepper plants in the chili pepper family Capsicum adapted over time to produce a substance, capsaicin, that binds with pain receptors found in mammalian mouth and sinus cavities. Conveniently for the pepper plants, however, birds have few to no equivalent pain receptors in their mouths. As such, birds are a near perfect pepper seed propagation vehicle: they happily eat the pepper and its seeds, the seeds pass through their digestive tract undisturbed (whereas most mammals would crush/grind the seed during consumption), and they are deposited in nutrient rich bird droppings far from the point they were eaten.

While seducing birds might have helped the chili pepper in the millenniums before humans came along, nothing gave them a boost like the human appetite for spicy food. There is evidence that the first chili peppers were domesticated approximately 6,000 years ago in Mexico and today many varieties of chili peppers are cultivated around the world (including varieties, for the thrill seekers, with capsaicin concentrations so high they can blister your skin).

Trivia

Easy

Numismatics Is The Study Of?

Trivia

Hard

Greebles Are A Critical Element Of Set Design In Which Movie Genre?

Trivia

Hard

What Was The First Electronic Programmable Computer?

Trivia

Hard

The Speed Of A Computer Mouse Is Measured In What Unit?

Trivia

Easy

The Compound In Peppers That Gives Them Their Spicy Kick Is Called?

Trivia

Easy

Stomach Ulcers Are Caused By?

Trivia

Hard

Listerine Mouthwash Is Named After?

Trivia

Hard

The First Effective Treatment For Syphilis Was What?

Trivia

Hard

The Largest Working Musical Instrument In The World Is Located In?