The key difference between protandry and protogyny depends on the maturation of the male and female parts. Protandry is the phenomenon in which male parts mature prior to female parts in an organism while protogyny is the phenomenon in which female parts mature prior to male parts.
The concepts of protandry and protogyny explain the male and female maturation in the context of both plants and animals. They are important for breeding and characterization of plants and animals on the basis of their maturation patterns. In plants, protandry is the maturation of the androecium before the gynoecium. In contrast, protogyny is the opposite process, in which gynoecium matures before androecium.
What is Protandry?
Protandry occurs both in animals as well as in plants. In animals, the occurrence of protandry is the basis for the maturation of male and female sexes. Thus, in this context, protandry in animals refers to the process where an organism that begins its life as a male change into a female. However, this shift in gender can be due to varied reasons, including environmental changes, social pressure and for survival. In crustaceans and earthworms, protandry occurs at the reproductive stage. Thus, they develop mature sperms prior to the development of the eggs.
In terms of protandry in plants, the male flower seems to mature way ahead of the female flower. In bisexual flowers, the male part or the androecium matures prior to the female part – the gynoecium.
Thus, this adaptation in plants will facilitate and favour cross-pollination. Cross-pollination will result in inducing favourable characters to the downstream progenies. However, protandry plants can also perform self-pollination upon the necessity.
What is Protogyny?
Protogyny is the opposite of the series of events that take place in protandry. In animals, protogyny leads to the change of an organism that starts its life as a female to change into a male. Protogyny also refers to the process where the female parts of an organism develop prior to the male parts.
In plants, protogyny acts as an important process to facilitate cross-pollination. Thus, in plants, protogyny results in the maturation of the female part (gynoecium) prior to the male part (androecium).
What are the Similarities Between Protandry and Protogyny?
- Both processes take place in both animals and plants.
- In plants, both protandry and protogyny result in facilitating cross-pollination.
- Also, both are important in deciding plant breeding patterns and techniques.
- Moreover, protandry and protogyny in both plants and animals are a resultant of their adaptability to changes in environment and stress levels.
What is the Difference Between Protandry and Protogyny?
The key difference between protandry and protogyny is that protandry refers to the maturation and development of the male parts before the female parts while protogyny refers to the development of the female parts prior to the male parts. In animals, protandry organisms show the maturation of sperms prior to the eggs. However, the opposite takes place in protogyny.
The below info-graphic presents more information regarding the difference between protandry and protogyny.
Summary – Protandry vs Protogyny
Protandry and Protogyny are adaptations shown by some organisms in response to the changes taking place in the surrounding environments. Thus, these adaptations have ensured the survival of these organisms over the years. Protandry is the phenomenon where the male parts develop prior to female parts. In comparison, the process of protogyny refers to the phenomenon where female parts develop prior to the male parts in an organism. So, this is the key difference between protandry and protogyny. It takes place in both animals and plants, and the role played is significant to both types of organisms.
1. “Aeonium protandry” By Nadiatalent – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Jaltomata procumbens protogyny” Von Thomas Mione, Central Connecticut State University, Biology Department – Jaltomata research homepage (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia