As in the description above, pollination syndromes mostly describe mutualistic relationships (a form of symbiosis where both species benefit from the relationship). But not all flowers are so magnanimously sweet. Some, in fact, are quite stinky. Literally and metaphorically. These stinky plants, with aptonyms like corpse flower, stinking Benjamin, and skunk cabbage, emit scent molecules that mimic molecules, with names like putrescine and cadaverine, which are emitted by decomposing carcasses and scat. They fool their pollinators (when the pollinators are flies, they’re called sapromyophiles) into thinking that there’s a fetid meal at the end of the foul road. The frustrated flies, ants, beetles, etc. frantically search the flesh- or poop-colored flowers for food before ultimately giving up and moving onto the next flower. This exploitative symbiotic relationship amounts to a form of parasitism.
Close up of the wild ginger flowers