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Definition Of Heterotroph or Autotroph and types of Autotrophs

Referencing Styles : MLA | Pages : 1

What is a Heterotroph or Autotroph?

Autotrophs is a biological term referred to the organisms that produce their own food from the available resource in their surrounding for example plants, algae and some bacteria. Autotrophs are also known as the primary producers. In other words it can be said that the organism those are able to form nutritional organic substances from simple inorganic substances. The autotrophs uses energy like light energy for photosynthesis, and are called as photoautotrophs and some uses chemical reaction to make food called as chemoautotrophs.

Heterotrophs are those organisms which depend upon organic matter for food which is produced by other organisms. Heterotrophs are often called as the consumers. Heterotrophs are unable to synthesize their own food hence they depend on others such as both plants and animals for their nutrition. Basically there are two types of heterotrophs photoheterotrophs and chemoheterotrophs, the photoheterotrophs uses light for energy but they cannot use carbon dioxide as their primary carbon resource. In order to get carbon, the source is available from carbohydrates, alcohol and fatty acids. The chemoheterotrophs get their energy through the process of oxidation compounds that is by consuming the other organism eating them alive or dead.  

What are 3 types of Autotrophs?

The three types of autotrophs are plant autotroph, algae autotroph and bacteria autotroph. The plant autotroph is all around us. In everyday life we see plants around us from small dandelion to big oak tree. Plants are referred as autotrophs as they prepare their own food by using the source like light energy for photosynthesis and other minerals from ground.

The algae autotrophs, the size of the algae is dynamic and dramatic, however like plants they are found all over the place. The green algae are involved in the process of photosynthesis and hence producing their own food. The bacteria autotrophs, these are the tiny organisms and cannot be seen through naked eyes, like plants and algae, the bacteria are also autotrophic in nature as they make their own food.

What are some examples of an Autotroph?

The examples of autotrophs are as follows: in plants, the resurrection fern which is also known as Selaginella lepidophylla, this autotroph is quiet interesting to study as it appears to resurrect from the dead. It live sin very dry climate and when they face lack of water these plants shrivels up into a grey ball and can stay in that state for many  years. When it finally rains, the resurrection fern grows and turns into green. This is the reason why it is said that it come back from dead.

Another example of autotrophs is green algae, in particular sea lettuce which is also called as Ulva, they processes photosynthesis and they make their own food.

Do all Autotrophs use photosynthesis? 

No, it can’t be said that all the autotrophs uses photosynthesis as there are many bacteria which do not processes photosynthesis but still autotrophs. The autotrophs that perform chemosynthesis do not use light energy for food instead they make food by using energy from chemical reaction which is often combining methane or hydrogen with oxygen

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