Explain the relationship between food chains and web

explain the relationship between food chains and web

Find out how FOOD CHAINS and FOOD WEBS are different and see some examples. Food chains and food webs. Food chains and food webs describe feeding relationships. The population of species in a food chain is shown using a pyramid of. Food web, on the other hand, is defined as the convoluted or complicated pathway of an ecosystem consist of numerous food chains of the.

Primary consumers are usually herbivores, plant-eaters, though they may be algae eaters or bacteria eaters. The organisms that eat the primary consumers are called secondary consumers. Secondary consumers are generally meat-eaters—carnivores. The organisms that eat the secondary consumers are called tertiary consumers. These are carnivore-eating carnivores, like eagles or big fish.

Some food chains have additional levels, such as quaternary consumers—carnivores that eat tertiary consumers. Organisms at the very top of a food chain are called apex consumers. We can see examples of these levels in the diagram below. The green algae are primary producers that get eaten by mollusks—the primary consumers.

The mollusks then become lunch for the slimy sculpin fish, a secondary consumer, which is itself eaten by a larger fish, the Chinook salmon—a tertiary consumer. In this illustration, the bottom trophic level is green algae, which is the primary producer.

Difference Between Food Chain and Food Web (with Comparison Chart) - Bio Differences

The primary consumers are mollusks, or snails. The secondary consumers are small fish called slimy sculpin. The tertiary and apex consumer is Chinook salmon. For instance, humans are omnivores that can eat both plants and animals. Decomposers One other group of consumers deserves mention, although it does not always appear in drawings of food chains. This group consists of decomposers, organisms that break down dead organic material and wastes. Decomposers are sometimes considered their own trophic level.

As a group, they eat dead matter and waste products that come from organisms at various other trophic levels; for instance, they would happily consume decaying plant matter, the body of a half-eaten squirrel, or the remains of a deceased eagle.

In a sense, the decomposer level runs parallel to the standard hierarchy of primary, secondary, and tertiary consumers. Fungi and bacteria are the key decomposers in many ecosystems; they use the chemical energy in dead matter and wastes to fuel their metabolic processes. Other decomposers are detritivores—detritus eaters or debris eaters. These are usually multicellular animals such as earthworms, crabs, slugs, or vultures. They not only feed on dead organic matter but often fragment it as well, making it more available for bacterial or fungal decomposers.

When they break down dead material and wastes, they release nutrients that can be recycled and used as building blocks by primary producers.

  • Food chains and food webs
  • Food chains & food webs

Food webs Food chains give us a clear-cut picture of who eats whom. However, some problems come up when we try and use them to describe whole ecological communities.

explain the relationship between food chains and web

For instance, an organism can sometimes eat multiple types of prey or be eaten by multiple predators, including ones at different trophic levels. This is what happens when you eat a hamburger patty! The cow is a primary consumer, and the lettuce leaf on the patty is a primary producer. To represent these relationships more accurately, we can use a food web, a graph that shows all the trophic—eating-related—interactions between various species in an ecosystem.

The diagram below shows an example of a food web from Lake Ontario.

explain the relationship between food chains and web

Primary producers are marked in green, primary consumers in orange, secondary consumers in blue, and tertiary consumers in purple. The bottom level of the illustration shows primary producers, which include diatoms, green algae, blue-green algae, flagellates, and rotifers.

Food Chains for Kids: Food Webs, the Circle of Life, and the Flow of Energy - FreeSchool

The next level includes the primary consumers that eat primary producers. These include calanoids, waterfleas, cyclopoids, rotifers and amphipods.

At last the organic matter gets decomposed by their predators. Energy flows in the large amount in this food chain. Definition of Food Web When several food chains are linked or interconnected together to form a network is called as the food web.

Food chains & food webs (article) | Ecology | Khan Academy

There is the involvement of various. Organisms of different species of the population. There is one common thing in all, is the need of energy to do their activities. The sun is considered as the main source of energy on Earth.

Difference Between Food Chain and Food Web

This energy is used by the green plants producer to make their food. Once the energy got captured, it is now will get pass through many phases of various organisms of the particular area, this is called as the food web. Food Web can be defined as the complex interconnection of numerous food chains through which the energy flow in the ecosystem.

Food Chain consists of only one straight chain, while food web has numbers of interconnected food chains. In comparison to the food web, there is a lot of instability in the food chain, and this is due to increasing number of separate and confined food chains. Whereas in food web there is stability and it increases due to the presence of the complex food chains. As in food chain, there are trophic levels only of different species, and any disturbance at any level may disturb the whole chain.

On the other hand in food web there in the involvement of numerous trophic level of the different population of a species and so it does not affect the food web if there is a removal of any group of organisms at any trophic level.