This organism exhibits a mutualistic relationship with other species, especially animals. As I previously stated in my habitat page, Salmonberries provide food and protection for animals such as bears, deer, elk, raccoons, birds, etc. This shrub can supply cover for smaller animals in bad weather, from predators, and even as a home. Also, these animals eat the drupelets and pass the seeds through their digestive tract. This allows the seeds to spread to different areas for growth. Rubus spectabilis is a primary producer in the food web because it is an autotrophic organism.

Salmonberries were used by many Indian tribes and early settlers for medical purposes in the United States. Burns were treated using the bark or leaves. The bark was turned into a powder to soothe the burns. The leaves were used to help children sleep. Certain tribes used parts of the organism for different things. For example, the tribe Bella Coola used root bark to help ease stomach troubles. The Quinault used various forms to help ease labor pains and also to soothe burns. The leaves were used in many teas to help soothe the sick and to relax them, also.

                                                                                         Leaves and drupelets of Rubus spectabilis 
                                                                               Photo courtesy of: Pat Breen, Oregon State Univ.


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