CARNIVOROUS NUTRITION OR INSECTIVOROUS PLANTS MODE OF NUTRITIONUnderstanding Carnivorous plants
Carnivorous plants are plants that derive some or most of their nutrients (but not energy) from trapping and consuming animals or protozoans, typically insects and other arthropods. Carnivorous plants have adapted to grow in places where the soil is thin or poor in nutrients, especially nitrogen, such as acidic bogs. Charles Darwin wrote Insectivorous Plants, the first well-known treatise on carnivorous plants, in 1875.
True carnivoreis thought to have evolved independently nine times in five different orders of flowering plants and is represented by more than a dozen genera. This classification includes at least 583 species that attract, trap, and kill prey, absorbing the resulting available nutrients.
300 proto-carnivorous plant species in several genera show some but not all of these characteristics.
Carnivorous or insectivorous plants are equipped with devices for trapping, digesting and absorbing nutritive compounds from the body of insects and other small organisms. They have green leaves to help them carry out photosynthesis or photosynthetic nutrition
Carnivorous plantsusually grow in place with little nitrogenous salts and they then use insects and other smaller animals as their source of nitrogen
Examples of carnivorous or insectivorous plants are
SUNDEW (DROSERA)The Drosera plant possesses leaves capable of forming an organ to trap and digest insects and it is an example of a carnivorous plant. The upper surface of the leaves has a number of glandular hairs or tentacles. The leaf surface is sticky as a result of digestive gland in the gland.
The presence of an insect on the leaf stimulates the leaf to fold over and turn all the tentacles inwards. The insect caught get enmeshed. Secretions from the glands then pour out and cover the insect. The explanation above shows the Sundew as a carnivorous plant
The Bladderwort is an aquatic carnivorous plant without the possession of roots. Some of the leaves are modified to form hair-like bladders. Each bladder has a trap door hinged on only one edge, so that it can only open inward and tend to remain closed.
In these arrangement, a trapped insect finds it difficult to escape. The captured insect eventually dies of starvation and its nutrients are then absorbed by the plant. This characteristics of Bladderwort makes it a carnivorous plant
PITCHER-PLANT OF THE NEPENTHES AND SARRACENA
The pitcher is a type of carnivorous plant and it is formed from the modified leaf while the whole leaf of the Sarracena is modified into the Pitcher plant, only the terminal leaf of Nepenthes forms the Pitcher plant
The Nepenthes as a carnivorous plant contains watery fluids secreted by glands in the lower half. The wall of the rest Pitcher above these secretion is smooth, being covered b y little waxy scales.
The Pitcher as a carnivorous plant has a lid. Once at the lid, the insect falls over the rim of the Pitcher into the fluid at the bottom.
Enzymes secreted by the Pitcher aids the digestion after which the required nutrients are absorbed by the plant.
Other examples of carnivorous plants arei. Venus-fly trap also known as Dionaea muscipula
ii. The Butterwort also called Pinguicula
Plants belonging to the genus Nepenthes are carnivorous, using specialized pitfall traps called "pitchers" that attract, capture, and digest insects as a primary source of nutrients. We have used RNA sequencing to generate a cDNA library from the Nepenthes pitchers and applied it to mass spectrometry-based identification of the enzymes secreted into the pitcher fluid using a nonspecific digestion strategy superior to trypsin in this application. This first complete catalog of the pitcher fluid subproteome includes enzymes across a variety of functional classes. The most abundant proteins present in the secreted fluid are proteases, nucleases, peroxidases, chitinases, a phosphatase, and a glucanase. Nitrogen recovery involves a particularly rich complement of proteases. In addition to the two expected aspartic proteases, we discovered three novel nepenthensins, two prolyl endopeptidases that we name neprosins, and a putative serine carboxypeptidase. Additional proteins identified are relevant to pathogen-defense and secretion mechanisms. The full complement of acid-stable enzymes discovered in this study suggests that carnivory in the genus Nepenthes can be sustained by plant-based mechanisms alone and does not absolutely require bacterial symbiosis.
Here are links to previous articles and post that are related to insectivorous or carnivorous nutrition
1. Modes of nutrition in animals
2. Saprophytic nutrition
3. Parasitic nutrition
4. Forages and farm animal nutrition
5. Water as a food substance
6. Carnivorous nutrition in plants
7. Endoparasites and Ectoparasites feeding modes
8. Holozoic mode of nutrition
9. Heterotrophic mode of nutrition
10. Autotrophic nutrition
11. Chemosynthetic nutrition
12. Importance of balance diet
13. What is Kwashiokor?
14. How to test for food
15. Vitamin deficiency symptoms
16. Mineral deficiency symptoms
17. Types of carbohydrates
18. Food substances
19. Classification of food substances
20. feeding mechanisms in holozoic organisms