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 (hĕt′ər-ə-trŏf′, -trōf′)
An organism that is dependent on complex organic substances for nutrition because it cannot synthesize its own food.

het′er·o·troph′ic adj.
het′er·o·troph′i·cal·ly adv.
het′er·ot′ro·phy (-ə-rŏt′rə-fē) n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ˈhɛt ər əˌtrɒf, -ˌtroʊf)

an organism requiring organic compounds for its principal source of food. Compare autotroph.
het`er•o•troph′ic, adj.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


An organism that obtains food by feeding on other organisms, e.g. animals, fungi.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.heterotroph - an organism that depends on complex organic substances for nutrition
organism, being - a living thing that has (or can develop) the ability to act or function independently
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Elton (1927) argued that the general constraint on food chain length may be largely related to the loss of energy in successive trophic levels due to low conversion efficiency in consumer species. This argument extends from the basic thermodynamic principle that energy dissipates from a system as a consequence of inefficient transfer or conversion and has been expanded and refined by Lindeman (1942) and Yodzis (1984), among others.
Fishing has increasingly exerted pressure on fish species and affected the primary consumer species. We hypothesized at Lake Iro fish catches were below optimal fish production levels, essentially due to excessive localized fishing efforts, and selective fishing techniques by fisherman.
Coexistence and limiting similarity of consumer species competing for a linear arrayy of resources.
When borrowed by resistant consumer species, however, they confer chemical defense against higher-order predators or operate in chemical communication as chemosensory excitants (Brown, 1984; Kvitek and Bretz, 2004, 2005; Williams et al., 2004; Narberhaus et al., 2005; Zimmer et at., 2006; Hara, 2011).
where R, C and P are resource, consumer and predator densities, respectively; K is the resource carrying capacity; [R.sub.0], [R.sub.02] are the half-saturation densities of the resource (R) and [C.sub.0] the half-saturation density of the consumer (C); [x.sub.c], [x.sub.p] are the mass-specific metabolic rates of consumer and predator species, respectively; [y.sub.c], [y.sub.pr] and [y.sub.pc] are measures of ingestion rate of consumer species and predator (Yodzis and Innes, 1992; McCann and Yodzis, 1994a, b; McCann and Hastings, 1997).
Here we compare the population demography of a common but important consumer species in eastern and mid-western grassland communities (Microtus pennsylvanicus) across three habitats that differ in the amount of time since reclamation following strip-mining (30, 25, and 15 years).
Small green frogs (Rana clamitans) were the focal consumer species, small bullfrogs (R.
Exploitation competition is a reduction in a consumer resulting from the reduction of its prey by another consumer species. Although a primary focus of ecology for years, exploitation competition was not appreciated as an indirect effect until relatively recently (e.g., Kerfoot and Sih 1987, Strauss 1991).
Moreover, toxins act as feeding attractants for consumer species that are resistant to its adverse effects.
where [R.sub.[0.sub.i]] and [C.sub.[0.sub.i]] are half-saturation densities of the resource ([R.sub.i]) and consumer ([C.sub.i]), respectively; [x.sub.[c.sub.i]] and [x.sub.p] are mass-specific metabolic rates, measured relative to the production-to-biomass ratio of the resource population; and [y.sub.[c.sub.i]] and [y.sub.p] are measures of ingestion rate per unit metabolic rate of consumer species i and the predator (McCann and Yodzis 1994, 1995).
1a illustrates a range of possible results observed in a field experiment designed to determine the effect of a consumer species y on a target species x.