Is a protista a heterotrophic or autotrophic?
Heterotrophs and autotrophs. Mostly single celled, but some autotrophs are colonial and/or multicellular. All autotrophs use chlorphyll a as their primary photosynthetic pigment. (Grab bag kingdom: all eukaryotes that aren't fungi, plants, or animals.)
|A COMPARISON OF THE FIVE KINGDOMS|
|Organization||Unicellular||Unicellular or Multicellular|
|Mode of nutrition||Autotrophs or Heterotrophs||Autotrophs or Heterotrophs|
|Representative groups||Archaea, eubacteria||Protozoa, algae, slime molds|
- Plants are the prime example of autotrophs, using photosynthesis. All other organisms must make use of food that comes from other organisms in the form of fats, carbohydrates and proteins. These organisms which feed on others are called heterotrophs.
- Fungi are heterotrophic - they obtain their organic material from external sources, their environment. They have no chlorophyll; they are not green in color. In comparison, most plants are autotrophic, they are able to manufacture their food from solar radiation and water.
- Eubacteria--Prokaryotic, unicellular, nutrition mainly by absorption (heterotrophic) with some photo- or chemosynthesis (autotrophic) "all single celled organisms with no membrane surrounding the genetic material (Bacteria, Blue-green algae) and circular DNA.
Paramecium are heterotrophs. Their common form of prey is bacteria. A single organism has the ability to eat 5,000 bacteria a day. They are also known to feed on yeasts, algae, and small protozoa.
- To eat, the amoeba stretches out the pseudopod, surrounds a piece of food, and pulls it into the rest of the amoeba's body. Amoebas eat algae, bacteria, other protozoans, and tiny particles of dead plant or animal matter.
- In the case of an amoeba moving, it's cytoplasm flows forward to form a pseudopodium, then it evens back out. In order to eat, it will form two pseudopodia and wrap those around to meet each other, enclosing its food, then the cytoplasm evens out again.
- Volvox and its relatives live in freshwater ponds all over the world. Some of the species are unicellular, while others live in colonies of up to 50,000 cells. Many of the colonial algae species are visible to the eye and appear to be little green spheres rolling through the water.
Most opisthokonts and prokaryotes are heterotrophic; in particular, all animals and fungi are heterotrophs. Some animals, such as corals, form symbiotic relationships with autotrophs and obtain organic carbon in this way.
- Overview of cycle between autotrophs and heterotrophs. Photosynthesis is the main means by which plants, algae and many bacteria produce organic compounds and oxygen from carbon dioxide and water (green arrow).
- The main difference between fungi and plants is that fungi are heterotrophs. They do NOT photosynthesize. - the generally get their energy from other organisms, by breaking down (usually dead) tissue and absorbing the nutrients they need. - molds, mushrooms, fungi, are all in this group.
- Bacteria capable of photosynthesis are autotrophs because they can make their own food. Most bacteria are heterotrophs ;they have to get organic material from the environment to grow. Some species are autotrophic and other species are heterotrophic.
Updated: 25th November 2019