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Energy Flow in Ecosystems

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Energy Flow in Ecosystems. Chapter 5. Why do organisms need energy?. Basic body processes (breathing, digestion, blood flow) Migration/moving Catching food “energy flow determines how much life an ecosystem can support”. Sunlight. The main source of energy for all life on Earth

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why do organisms need energy
Why do organisms need energy?
  • Basic body processes (breathing, digestion, blood flow)
  • Migration/moving
  • Catching food
  • “energy flow determines how much life an ecosystem can support”
  • The main source of energy for all life on Earth
  • Only 1% of the sun’s radiation is used by organisms
energy catchers
Energy Catchers
  • Autotrophs = plants, algae, and bacteria that capture energy for food from sunlight or chemicals
  • also called Producers
  • “essential to the flow of energy in an ecosystem”
  • The process by which autotrophs capture the energy of the sun
  • Convert carbon dioxideand water into oxygen and carbohydrates
  • Remove CO2 from the atmosphere and add Oxygen for us to breathe
  • Process by which organisms convert chemicals to energy w/o light
  • Many types of bacteria do it
  • Able to live in harsh environments (tar pits, deep sea vents, hot springs, salt marshes)
  • Consumers = organisms that cannot harness energy directly from the environment and must require it from eating other organisms
  • also called Heterotrophs
types of consumers
Types of Consumers
  • Herbivores = eat only plants (cows, deer)
  • Carnivores = only eat animals (snakes, owls)
types of consumers1
Types of Consumers
  • Omnivores = eat both plants and animals (humans, bear, crows)
  • Detrivores (decomposer) = feed on dead and decaying plants and animals – detritus (snails, crabs, bacteria)
how do organisms use the energy they get from food
How do organisms use the energy they get from food?
  • Cellular Respiration = the cellular process that converts food into energy
  • sugar and oxygen are converted into carbon dioxide and water and a lot of energy is released
feeding relationships
Feeding Relationships
  • Energy flows through an ecosystem in one direction
  • Sun/Inorganic Molecule to Autotroph (producer) to Heterotroph (consumer)
  • Modeled as a food chain or food web
food chain
Food Chain
  • A series of steps where energy is transferred from organisms being eaten or by eating
  • Energy flows in one direction
  • Some start or end with decomposers
food webs
Food Webs
  • Energy relationships are more complex than a simple food chain
  • A producer can be eaten by more than one consumer (grass is eaten by deer, rabbits, and mice in a forest)
  • Depicts all the feeding relationships in a specific ecosystem
trophic levels
Trophic Levels
  • The name for each step in the food chain
  • Producer = 1st level
  • Consumers = 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc…
  • Each consumer depends on the level below it for energy
energy pyramid
Energy Pyramid
  • Shows how much energy is stored and how much is used at each trophic level
  • 90% used = reproduction, move, breathe, etc…
  • 10% stored = available for next consumer
  • Less energy at the top