All of the photoreceptors involved in the absorption and transduction of light energy in photosynthesis are integral (carotenoid, chlorophyll) or peripheral (phycobilin) membrane proteins. The informational photoreceptors (phytochrome) and the flavoprotein (carotenoprotein?) cryptochrome, could be integral (carotenoprotein, flavoprotein) or peripheral or soluble (phytochrome, flavoprotein) pigment-protein complexes. The primary activity of the informational photoreceptors is unlikely to involve energization of primary active transport: the solute fluxes produced in this way would not form a quantitatively significant link in the perception-transduction-response sequence. By contrast, regulation of mediated solute fluxes at the plasmalemma could effect a substantial amplification of the absorbed photon signal, i.e. a large change in moles of solute transported could result from the absorption of 1 mol of photons. Modulation of the passive influx (or active efflux) of protons or calcium ions at the plasmalemma are likely targets for regulation by photoreceptors. Calcium flux regulation is particularly attractive in view of the ubiquity of calmodulin activity in eukaryotes, although problems could arise in maintaining the uniqueness of phytochrome messages vis-a-vis cryptochrome messages. Temporal analysis of the relation between photoreceptor changes and electrical effects resulting from changes in ion fluxes cannot, in general, rule out the involvement of intermediates between the redox or conformational change in the photoreceptor and the observed change in ion flux. Although slow in terms of the potential rate of change on solute fluxes resulting from direct interaction of a photoreceptor and a solute porter, the observed rates of signal transduction are well in excess of any obvious `need' on the part of the plant in terms of rates of response to environmental changes.