Energy Flow through Ecosystems
How Organisms Acquire Energy in a Food Web
Autotrophs (producers) synthesize their own energy, creating organic materials that are utilized as fuel by heterotrophs (consumers).
Productivity within Trophic Levels
Productivity, measured by gross and net primary productivity, is defined as the amount of energy that is incorporated into a biomass.
Ecological Efficiency: The Transfer of Energy between Trophic Levels
Energy is lost as it is transferred between trophic levels; the efficiency of this energy transfer is measured by NPE and TLTE.
Modeling Ecosystems Energy Flow: Ecological Pyramids
Ecological pyramids, which can be inverted or upright, depict biomass, energy, and the number of organisms in each trophic level.
Consequences of Food Webs: Biological Magnification
When toxic substances are introduced into the environment, organisms at the highest trophic levels suffer the most damage.