You conceive of algae as simpler, therefore more primitive than and inferior to an eagle. But that alga introduces photons of the sun into the compounds of its body, it turns the flow of cosmic energy directly into life and therefore will last as long as the sun does; it feeds on a star, and what does an eagle feed on? Like a parasite, on mice, while mice feed on the roots of plants, a land variety of algae. Such pyramids of parasitism make up the entire biosphere, for plant vegetation is its vital anchor. On all levels of these hierarchies there is a continual change of species kept in balance by the devouring of one by another, for they have lost contact with the star; the higher complexity of organisms fattens itself, not on the star, but on itself.
~ Stanislaw Lem (Golem XIV in Imaginary Magnitude)