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Ecosystems and Trophic Levels. Tropical Rainforest - Assignment Example

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Tropical Rainforest. Tropical rainforests extending from 23.5N to 23.5S inhabit a great diversity of plants and animal, fungi and microbes and other species. Although this area has poor soil but still it is the most productive ecosystem of this planet…
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Ecosystems and Trophic Levels. Tropical Rainforest
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Download file to see previous pages There is an estimate that approximately 20 to 86 species of trees exist per acre of these forests. Trees lies in several vertical layers named as Emergent layer, Canopy layer, under story layer, shrub layer and ground layer (Davis, 2007). So scientists consider this area as species-richest biomes on this planet that is very unique due to its complex ecosystems. Food Chain: In tropical rainforest there are hundreds of interlinked food chains those when combined result in a complex and huge food web. Tropical rainforests food chain has four levels First level is dominated by plants, fruits, leaves, planktons etc Second level is made up by the herbivores (animals which eat plants) such as insects, small reptiles, nectar eating birds and some large animals such as monkeys, apes etc. Small carnivorous animals (meat eating animals) make the third level and these include rodents, and some small reptiles. Large carnivorous animals such as snakes make the fourth level. Last and fifth level is dominated by the large dangerous carnivores such as pythons, alligators tigers etc. Symbiotic Relationships and energy transfer within various levels: Life in tropical rainforest is difficult and there is a strong competition between different species. Hundreds of species have developed symbiotic relationship with other species in order to survive in such a highly competitive environment. In a symbiotic relationship both species are mutually benefited. ...
Primary producers also named as autotrophs are the only living being which use the sunlight energy to convert carbon dioxide and water into carbohydrates (Pipe, 2008). Then comes primary consumers, which consume autotrophs and utilize their energy for their living. In this way energy is transferred from one level to next level. In energy pyramid third and fourth level is occupied by secondary and tertiary consumers. Secondary consumer depends on plants as well as on primary consumers for their energy requirement whereas secondary consumers (carnivore) feed on secondary consumers (Davis, 2007). As energy is transferred from one level to another, it becomes lesser in amount as some energy is lost as heat energy. Indeed only 1.2% of energy is transmitted to the next higher level in this energy pyramid. Decomposers or detritivores form the last level of energy pyramid. Detritivore include bacteria, fungi and virus. And these are the organisms which nourish on dead plants and animals and derive energy by decomposing these dead bodies. In this way they change the complex organic substances of the dead bodies into their simpler form that is further utilized by the plants to synthesize their food. In this way decomposers serve as a link between autotrophs and consumers. Decomposers also serve to clean the environment (Pipe, 2008). Human interference: This valuable resource of earth is under threat due to human activities. Extension in human settlements, need for the more and more agricultural land, construction of roads and need of wood have resulted in quick deforestation of this tropical rainforest. As a result of this deforestation large area has lost its vegetative cover as well hundreds of thousands of other species that inhabited or ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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