Environmental differences between sites control the diet and nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

Cook, J. L., Newton, J. and Millett, J. (2018) Environmental differences between sites control the diet and nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia. Plant and Soil, 423(1-2), pp. 41-58. (doi: 10.1007/s11104-017-3484-6)

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Background and aims: Carnivorous plants are sensitive to small changes in resource availability, but few previous studies have examined how differences in nutrient and prey availability affect investment in and the benefit of carnivory. We studied the impact of site-level differences in resource availability on ecophysiological traits of carnivory for Drosera rotundifolia L. Methods: We measured prey availability, investment in carnivory (leaf stickiness), prey capture and diet of plants growing in two bogs with differences in N deposition and plant available N: Cors Fochno (0.62 g m−2 yr.−1, 353 μg l−1), Whixall Moss (1.37 g m−2 yr.−1, 1505 μg l−1). The total N amount per plant and the contributions of prey/root N to the plants’ N budget were calculated using a single isotope natural abundance method. Results: Plants at Whixall Moss invested less in carnivory, were less likely to capture prey, and were less reliant on prey-derived N (25.5% compared with 49.4%). Actual prey capture did not differ between sites. Diet composition differed – Cors Fochno plants captured 62% greater proportions of Diptera. Conclusions: Our results show site-level differences in plant diet and nutrition consistent with differences in resource availability. Similarity in actual prey capture may be explained by differences in leaf stickiness and prey abundance.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:SIA was funded by the UK Natural Environment Research Council through the Life Science Mass Spectrometry Facility (Grant number EK188-15/11). JLC was funded through a PhD studentship from Loughborough University.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Newton, Dr Jason
Authors: Cook, J. L., Newton, J., and Millett, J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Plant and Soil
ISSN (Online):1573-5036
Published Online:18 November 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Authors
First Published:First published in Plant and Soil 423(1-2): 41-58
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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