A deer and two fawns feeding on foliage
A sawfly larva feeding on a leaf
Tracks made by terrestrial gastropods with their radulas, scraping green algae from a surface inside a greenhouse

A herbivore is an animal anatomically and physiologically adapted to eating plant material, for example foliage or marine algae, for the main component of its diet. As a result of their plant diet, herbivorous animals typically have mouthparts adapted to rasping or grinding. Horses and other herbivores have wide flat teeth that are adapted to grinding grass, tree bark, and other tough plant material.

A large percentage of herbivores have mutualistic gut flora that help them digest plant matter, which is more difficult to digest than animal prey.[1] This flora is made up of cellulose-digesting protozoans or bacteria.[2]

  1. ^ Moran, N.A. (2006). "Symbiosis". Current Biology. 16 (20): 866–871. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2006.09.019. PMID 17055966.
  2. ^ "symbiosis." The Columbia Encyclopedia. New York: Columbia University Press, 2008. Credo Reference. Web. 17 September 2012.

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