Morphological Adaptations of Two Plants and Two Animals Found In Xeric Conditions

Aim

To study the morphological adaptations of two plants and two animals (models/virtual images) found in xeric conditions.

Requirements

Virtual images or models of two plants and two animals found in xeric conditions.

Observations

Two Xeric Plants

Cacti

Pineapple

Morphological Features:

  • Succulence: These plants have special cells with water holding capacity in low moisture conditions.
  • Reduced Leaves: The leaves are reduced to spines that help in reducing excess loss of water through transpiration.
  • Stomata: In these plants, the stomata are either few on in sunken pits below the surface of the leaves.
  • Waxy, hairy and spiny outer surfaces: The hair and spines scatter light to reduce sun’s effect. The waxy covering holds in water.
  • Roots near the surface: These have the capacity of holding water quickly and can regenerate easily after rain.

Two Xeric Animals

Camel

Sandfish

Morphological Features:

  • The desert animals are poikilotherms, i.e., they can match their internal temperature to the external.
  • They excrete nitrogenous waste in the form of uric acid.
  • They undergo hibernation.
  • The animals stay in burrows to avoid water loss from the body and excrete highly concentrated urine.
  • The body temperature of camels increases by 7℃ during the late afternoon that decreases the heat flow from the environment. The fur reduces the heat gain from the environment.

Thus these adaptations help them to conserve water as much as possible and prepare them to live without water if required.

Also Read: Adaptation and Habitat

Organisms and Surroundings they Live in

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