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Energy Flow and Balance in Ecosystems

Chapter # 18

energy flowthe energy flows from one living thing to another in several steps these steps are based on what a living thing eats and where it gets its food . Each living thing fills a niche in this flow of energy .
energy from the sunthe sun provides materials with what they need , these materials are energy from the sunlight , nutrients from the air , water , and soil .
producera living thing containing chlorphill and capable of using sunlight to make its own food from materials taken from the soil and air .
consumera living thing that eats other living things .
herbivorean animal that eats only plants or plant materials .
carnivorean animal that only eats other animals .
recieving energyanimals and small living things recieve their energy by eating the stored food in plants or by eating the stored food in plants or by eating other organisms .
omnivorean animal that eats both plants and other animals .
decomposera living thing that feeds on dead materials , breaking them down and returning the materials to the environment .
food chainthe arrangement of living things in an order in which each uses the next as a source of food .
food weba combination of all the food chains in an ecosystem .
food pyramida diagram to show how the amount of food energy available changes at each step of the food chain .
limiting factora factor that controls the number of living things that an ecosystem can support .
carrying capacitythe maximum number of living things that agiven ecosystem can support without danger to the survival of the living things .
cyclethe movement of resoures in an ecosystem that results in materials being used again and again .

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