A Hard Nut to CrackRiddles are little poems or phrases that pose a question that needs answering. Riddles frequently rhyme, but this is not a requirement.
My life begins far above the ground,
Though below the ground life I may give.
When I come down to greet the ground,
A thunderous noise I will make.
A tasty treat to many I provide,
But only if they have the tools to get me.
The macaw is one,
The agouti is another.
Without the aid of the agouti,
My circle of life may never be completed,
And the forest I am part of would lose a valued member.
So watch out below when it's time for me to go,
Or an injury I will give you.
HintYou can find me mixed with others of my kind in the supermarket, but you don't have to work nearly as hard to get to me since all the work has been done.
AnswerA Brazil Nut
When the castana pods, which hold the brazil nuts deep inside, reach maturity their weight will cause them to fall from their branches, some 150 feet above the ground. Each castana pod can grow to be the size of a grapefruit weighing as much as 5 pounds. When these pods fall from the tree tops they sound like a cannon ball ricocheting off of larger branches until they hit the ground below. Any animal that would be unlucky enough to get in the way of this falling pod could sustain serious injuries. The macaws and agoutis are two of the only animals with the ability to crack into the hard outer pod of the brazil nut. The agoutis find these nuts to be an especially tasty treat but due to their poor memory, they often forget where they hide their freshly shelled snacks, thus aiding to the life cycle of the castana trees, the producer of the brazil nut. Each nut that is forgotten and buried by the agoutis has the potential of growing into a new castana tree.
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