Cannibalism vs. Autocannibalism

By Jaxson

Main Difference

The main difference between Cannibalism and Autocannibalism is that the Cannibalism is a act or practice of eating the flesh or internal organs of its own beings and Autocannibalism is a practice of eating oneself.

  • Cannibalism

    Cannibalism is the act of one individual of a species consuming all or part of another individual of the same species as food. To consume the same species, or show cannibalistic behavior, is a common ecological interaction in the animal kingdom, and has been recorded for more than 1,500 species. Human cannibalism is well-documented, both in ancient and recent times.The rate of cannibalism increases in nutritionally poor environments as individuals turn to other conspecific individuals as an additional food source. Cannibalism regulates population numbers, whereby resources such as food, shelter and territory become more readily available with the decrease of potential competition. Although it may benefit the individual, it has been shown that the presence of cannibalism decreases the expected survival rate of the whole population and increases the risk of consuming a relative. Other negative effects may include the increased risk of pathogen transmission as the encounter rate of hosts increases. Cannibalism, however, does not—as once believed—occur only as a result of extreme food shortage or artificial/unnatural conditions, but could also occur under natural conditions in a variety of species.Cannibalism seems to be especially prevalent in aquatic ecosystems, in which up to approximately 90% of the organisms engage in cannibalistic activity at some point in their life cycle. Cannibalism is also not restricted to carnivorous species, as it can be found in herbivores and detritivores. Sexual cannibalism normally involves the consumption of the male by the female individual before, during or after copulation. Other forms of cannibalism include size-structured cannibalism and intrauterine cannibalism.

    Behavioural, physiological and morphological adaptations have evolved to decrease the rate of cannibalism in individual species.

  • Autocannibalism

    Self-cannibalism is the practice of eating oneself, also called autocannibalism, or autosarcophagy. A similar term which is applied differently is autophagy, which specifically denotes the normal process of self-degradation by cells. While almost an exclusive term for this process, autophagy nonetheless has occasionally made its way into more common usage.

  • Cannibalism (noun)

    The act of eating another of one’s own species.

  • Cannibalism (noun)

    An act in which one thing consumes or takes over another of the same kind.

  • Cannibalism (noun)

    In speech, the occurrence of one word “eating” part or all of the next word, because the syllables are the same. For example, “Look, an MIT shirt” for “Look, an MIT T-shirt”.

  • Autocannibalism (noun)

    The eating of part of one’s own body.

    “god damn it babies, you’ve got to involuntarily practice some degree of autocannibalism – alt text for Dinosaur Comics, February 15, 2012, []”


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