A food chain shows how every living thing obtains its food. Some animals eat plants and some animals eat other animals. For example, a simple food chain links trees and shrubs, giraffes (which feed on trees and shrubs) and lions (who eat giraffes). Each link in this chain is food for the next link.
A food chain is the transfer of food energy from plants to one animal and then to another animal. Most food chains start with green plants that produce food energy from the Sun. Then one animal eats the plant and another animal eats that animal. Decomposers also play a crucial role in this case, since aquatic decomposers distribute nutrients not only in the soil, but throughout the water column, feeding the plankton that form the basis of all aquatic food chains.
Ultimately, everything gets its energy from the Sun, and most food chains follow the pattern of herbivores, carnivores, perhaps one or two carnivores, supreme predators. There, microbes that never saw the sun extracted nutrients from compounds emitted into water from deep in the Earth's crust and produced chemicals that created entirely new food webs that had never been dreamed of on the surface. It starts with the primary source, such as the sun or hydrothermal vents, where producers produce food, continues with consumers or animals that feed on food, and ends with the main predator. Much of the ocean remains unexplored, and food chains in water-based environments are often complex and surprising to Earth's inhabitants.
Decomposers help return nutrients to the soil, which will then be used by plants within the food chain. The term food chain refers to the sequence of events in an ecosystem, where one organism eats another and is then eaten by another organism. Based on the above examples, several of the first-level consumers (herbivores) could also eat other plants from the various food chains. By eating and excreting, decomposers return nutrients from dead organisms to the soil, nourishing plants that start the chains again.
Organisms ranging from bacteria and worms to the noble cockroach feed on the dead and, in doing so, break them down into the nutrients that keep the food chain running. Ask students to look for examples of animals in the coloring book that are actively involved in a food chain, that is, they are drawn eating a plant or hunting and eating another animal in the image. Food chains are the basic unit of any ecosystem and are connected together to form food networks that map the interactions of life on Earth.