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Hi- can anyone explain the difference between a detritivore and a saprophore? Seems to be describing the same thing =).

I removed the reference to Monotropes because it appears to be incorrect. It states that Monotropes are known to be parasites on other plants. As I understand it, monotropes are not necesarily parasites, as some feed off off oragnic material in the soil rather than other living plants. Sheldrake 22:29, 12 August 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Sorry I never addressed this. Quite simply, your understanding is wrong - there is no plant that breaks down soil organic matter as a food supply. Its quite simply physiologically impossible for plants to do this. Monotropes and other so-called "saprophytic" plants are myco-heterotrophs. Peter G Werner 07:45, 4 June 2006 (UTC)[reply] (talk) 18:20, 17 February 2013 (UTC)detritus is waste and decaying matter, chemicals are used to hydrolyse this decaying matter; hence the term "detrivore". Recycling at its best :)[reply]

On the other hand, a saprophyte is the term to define species that hydrolyse chemicals in the environment. A saprophyte can be a detrivore. The specific enzymes used to degrade tissue or organic chemicals in the soil can be used for both means; ie it is NOT ALWAYS necessary for degrading decaying matter (as a detrivore). Bev, Exeter. (talk) 18:20, 17 February 2013 (UTC)[reply]