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PlantDefenses213-page6 - The secondary metabolites just...

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Plant Stress and Defense Mechanisms - 6 The Predator Retaliation Some insect predators have evolved resistance to secondary metabolites and have incorporated them into their bodies to protect them from their predators. The monarch butterfly is perhaps the best example of the predator taking advantage of a toxic to protect itself from being consumed. Heliconius , a tropical butterfly has resistance to the cyanogenic glycoside of its “host” passion flower, and even converts the glycosides to unharmful molecules from which it obtains nitrogen. Some beetles destroy the toxin-containing lactifers in leaves and feast on the tasty parts. Beetle damage to milkweed Monarch larva and adult Mechanisms for Plant Wound Responses Plants have a variety of mechanisms to inhibit predation.
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Unformatted text preview: The secondary metabolites just mentioned are always present in the plant and act as effective deterrents once the predator recognizes that plant as something to avoid (or to take advantage of in the case of some, such as the Monarch and Heliconius butterflies). Growing Better A few plants respond to being eaten by herbivores by growing faster and better. For example, some plants, when browsed to the ground, respond by producing multiple shoots adventitiously. Dandelions respond to being decapitated in this manner. Where one shoot existed, after being "weeded", the remnant root may initiate three of four new shoots. Response to being Overeaten – Normal Growth Pattern on Right...
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