Tuesday, September 26th, 2023
We all are aware that there are various types of animals found in nature. They differ from each other depending on a lot of things. One such distinction is made definitely on the basis of the diet of the animals. Based on diet animals are categorized as herbivore, carnivore, and omnivore. Herbivores consume only plants or plant products. That doesn’t mean diet of all herbivores is same, their diet varies to a great extent.
Definition of Herbivores Animals
Animals that eat solely plants are Herbivorous animals. Plants are easily available in almost every habitat making them most abundant source of food. This source of food is very diverse and come in different shapes and sizes. Just like humans, animals also include plants in their diet. Herbivores on their part only include plants in their diet. Though all herbivores only consume plants, their diet varies from one to another. Some herbivores are particularly selective about their diet and consume only specific parts of the plant like the fruits, nectar, bark, or more. On the other hand, many herbivores don’t discriminate between different components of the plant while eating.
Examples of Herbivores Animals
There are different subcategories of herbivores like mammalian herbivores and insect herbivores.
Mammals can be carnivores, omnivores or herbivores. Mammalian herbivores are mammals who happen to be herbivorous. They have many features that distinguish them from omnivores and carnivores. They possess blunt teeth that help them in stripping leaves from plants and chewing tough plant fibres. Furthermore, some also possess special adaptations that help in digesting those plants. Mammalian herbivores are abundant. They include cows, buffaloes, horses, goat, deer, sheep and more. Some other examples are rabbits, elk, zebras, elephants, rhinoceros, and more. Certain herbivorous animals also possess cheek pouches. This aids them to store food and break down the plant cellulose.
Just like mammals, insects are also subcategorised into carnivores, omnivores and herbivores. We are very well aware that herbivores consume only plants or their products and insect herbivores do the same. But that certainly doesn’t mean that insect kingdom is dominated by herbivores. Omnivores and carnivores are also plentiful in insect kingdom. Many insect carnivores feast on other insects. Examples of insect carnivores include mosquitoes, beetles, hornets and more. Herbivorous insects on the other hand consume plants and their products only, this includes those which consume pollen and nectar. Some examples of herbivorous insects are butterflies, honeybees, grasshoppers, maggots, aphids, and more. As majority of the plants produce repellents to keep these insects away, these herbivorous insects adapt themselves to certain types of plants for diet.