In order to survive, every organism must be a predator and in turn, be prey to other organisms in the food chain. The way individuals interact with one another is extremely important and maintains the biodiversity in different ecosystems. In the symbiosis continuum, there is mutualism, commensialism, and parasitism. Below, you will find one example of a mutualistic relationship and one example of a commensalistic relationship that potentially lead to a parasitic relationship with the Clark's Sphinx Moth and other organisms living in its same environment.
Mutualism is the interaction between two individuals where the fitness of each of these individuals is raised because of the actions of each other (Boucher 1985). In other words, mutualism benefits both of the organisms involved but requires each of them to pay a “price” in return for that benefit. This type of interaction, contrast to commensalism and parasitism, is the more omnipresent of any two organisms. There are five groups of mutualisms and the one that the Clark’s Sphinx Moth falls into is the pollination mutualisms (Boucher 1985). Pollination mutualisms are extremely crucial to nature and evolution because they involve around 200,000 animal species and 170,000 plants (Nature Education 2014). In this mutualism, the flowers serve as the Clark’s Sphinx Moth main food source because they contain nectar and other nutrients the moth needs in order to survive. As the moth is visiting flowers for food, they are unknowingly spreading the pollen onto different flowers. The moth serves as the pollinator for the plants. Many flowers do not have the ability to pollinate themselves so they rely on insects to do it for them.
Parasitism and Commensialism
Parasitism is when one species is benefitted and the other is harmed. A parasite must live part or all of its life in or on a host, must demonstrate adaptation to that host, acquire resources from the host for its own benefit, and must cause damage to the host (Campbell and Reece 2008). Parasites can create negative effects environmentally, for themselves and their host’s environment (Web of Science 2014). Not specifically the Clark’s Sphinx Moth, but caterpillars and moths in general can serve as hosts for other organisms. An example of parasitism is larval parasitic mites that attach onto the body of hosts (Poinar et al. 1990). These mites use the moth or caterpillar’s blood as their own food source, allowing them to live. The mites are usually shaped like little balloons on the dorsal side of their hosts. They normally do not affect the life of their host unless they spread abundantly all over their bodies. If they do not affect their life, it is a commensalistic relationship. Commensialism is when one organism is benefitted while the other is neither benefitted or harmed (Campbell and Reece 2008). But if the mites do affect the life of the moth, it is parasitism and can cause reproduction problems for the female host. Many different species of insects share this relationship with parasitic mites, including the Crane Fly
Life is tough being an animal! Not only is there competition within their species for mating, there is also competition for other species in finding food. Competition is the interaction between two organisms where the fitness of one organism is lowered by the presence of other. It occurs naturally with organisms that live in the same environment. Clark’s Sphinx Moths compete with other moths and insects for the most nourishing flowers. If a competing organism over consumes a certain type of flower, leaving it scarce, the moth will inevitably have to change its eating habits to another type of flower in order to survive (Lloyd et al. 2008).
Just as Clarks Sphinx Moths are predators to organisms, they also serve as prey to other organisms, like bats, frogs, lizards, toads, and other insects like spiders (Fullard 1998). To learn more about one specific spider predator, click on this link. But not only does the Clark's Sphinx Moth need to beware of spiders, but also other dangerous predators lurking around the environment. If interested in learning more about a specifc lizard predator, click here. 
To find out more about cool organisms and how they interact with one another, check out this website
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