Food Chain/Web - Research Article from Environmental Encyclopedia

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Food Chain/Web


Food chains and food webs are methods of describing an ecosystem by describing how energy flows from one species to another.

First proposed by the English zoologist Charles Elton in 1927, food chains and food webs describe the successive transfer of energy from plants to the animals that eat them, and to the animals that eat those animals, and so on. A food chain is a model for this process which assumes that the transfer of energy within the community is relatively simple. A food chain in a grassland ecosystem, for example, might be: Insects eat grass, and mice eat insects, and fox eat mice. But such an outline is not exactly accurate, and many more species of plants and animals are actually involved in the transfer of energy. Rodents often feed on both plants and insects, and some animals, such as predatory birds, feed...

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This section contains 1,293 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Food Chain/Web Encyclopedia Article
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Environmental Encyclopedia
Food Chain/Web from Environmental Encyclopedia. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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