There is an unfortunate tendency to nominate large and conspicuous creatures as likely keystone species playing pivotal roles in ecosystems. Particular favorites in the tropics include fig trees (Ficus spp.), large apes, and colorful birds, but such claims are rarely supported by empirical evidence. Khanina (1998) follows this trend, suggesting that "only trees can be considered as keystone species of forest communities (detritus ecosystems)." I am sceptical; I suspect that inconspicuous organisms may be the ultimate arbiters of ecosystem function and appearance. Mycorrhizae play a critical, possibly pivotal, role in many forests, and they and other fungi may be more realistic candidates for the title of keystone within forest communities. Similarly, experience in Australia suggests that insects such as the Cactoblastis moth (Cactoblastis cactorum) and insect vectors of Myxomatosis have a greater influence on pasture dynamics than do the more conspicuous herbivores. I suspect that the roles of most organisms in ecosystems may be matters of degrees rather than absolutes such as "pivotal" (and conversely, "redundant"). I advocate caution in promoting these concepts without further evidence to support such claims.