Difference between insect and wind pollinated flowers?
- gardengallivantLv 77 years agoBest Answer
Flowers that rely on the wind for pollination are small and inconspicuous. They lack the large colorful corolla of petals and strong fragrances that act to attract insects and provide a way to control access to the nectar. Tubular flowers can only be reached by hovering moths or hummingbirds with long tongues while nocturnal flowers open for nocturnal insects.
Flowers show a typical insect pollination syndrome: a flower shape, a distinct colouring or color pattern and fragrance. This combines to be a signal once the flower is open, a signal that informs pollinators the type of reward the flower offers. Nectar content is adapted to the pollinator.
Wind pollination does not drive flowers or cones to highly adapted forms since the plant is more dependent on chance rather than a constant selection pressure from a coevolving insect. This non specialized flower form does not preclude insect pollination and plants will even benefit by the additional pollination by insects taking the pollen in directions the wind cannot thus pollinating plants out of the prevailing wind patterns.
However the wind pollinated flowers are usually catkins; inconspicuous single sexed flowers to prevent self pollination. They cannot self pollinate but rely on the wind to carry the pollen. The flower is a catkin shaped to let the wind assist in dispersal of the pollen and not attract insects that might eat the pollen. Some plants like oaks & birches have small plain male flowers and female flowers on the same plant but still rely on wind to provide cross pollination. Poplars have pendulous catkins while willows have the little furry upright catkins.
Abiotic pollination-20% of plant pollination
Anemophily, is pollination by wind-19.6%
Hydrophily is pollination by water 0.4%
Biotic pollination-80% of all pollination
Zoophily is pollination by vertebrates-bats & birds mostly
Entomophily is by insects
- DianeLv 44 years ago
Pollination is just the transportation of one gamete to another organism. So, in insect pollinated, the flower will use it's bright colours to attract insects (like honeybees) to its nectar. This nectar is a treat the bee gets for when it brushes up against the flower's anthers/stigma. When this happens, some of the pollen will get onto the bee. When it leaves (no pun intended) it will bring said pollen with it. Then it will travel to another flower and the pollen will brush off or fall of at some point, and allow the plant to cross-mate, so that it is not self fertilizing. Wind pollination on the other hand, is when it just drops its pollen into the air and hope the wind blows it away to a place where it can grow and cross mate with others.
- MetalplanttagLv 77 years ago
Insect pollinated flowers generally produce large, sticky pollen grains, while wind pollinated flowers produce lite none-sticky pollen grains.
In many species that are wind pollinated they have feathery stigmas which increases the area that can capture a floating pollen grain.