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What is a food chain? It is a representation of energy flow through an ecosystem. All food chains begin with a green plant, that traps energy from the Sun. We’ll look at lots of examples, and get to grips with terms such as producer, consumer, carnivore, herbivore, autotroph, heterotroph.
Food chains have limited use in looking at the big picture in an ecosystem, since there is usually more than one organism feeding on each food source. For a more realistic view of what happens in nature we need to consider food webs. A food web is a number of inter-connected food chains.
Check out this brainpop video.
We’ll discuss the idea of interdependence between all the organisms within a food chain, and look at how disease or a change in the environment affects things.
We need to answer this important question: why are food chains short (only 3 or 4 organisms long)?
We’ll use explorelearning to help us with these concepts. Log in using the details given in class, type a search for food chains. Follow the instructions for the food chain, praire ecosystem and forest ecosystem activities. Enjoy!
And here are a couple more sites to help reinforce these ideas. This one is from bbc science and this one allows you to explore a number of food webs.
This booklet by Mr Boulton might be useful for review and notes.Booklet to learn about ecology