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From Food Chain to Food Web

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  • 1. Food Chains to Food Webs
    This lesson was prepared
    for Spring 2011 OCS Biology Class
    by Linda Moore
  • 2. T
    All of the energy for the life processes of living things originates from the sun.
  • 3. The Sun is important because it warms the Earth. More importantly, the sun provides the energy that green plants use to produce food. Plants use some of the food they produce. Animals cannotuse the sun to make food in the same way that plants can. How do animals get their energy?
  • 4. Animals (consumers) get energy when they eat plants (producers) and other animals.
    A food chain organizes living things by where they get their food.
  • 5. Remember this food chain?
    A food chain is like a path on a map. If you follow the arrows, you can figure out the path each organism takes to get its energy.
    The arrows show who gets eaten by whom.
  • 6. But, there’s a problem with food chains. There’s a lot more to the story of eating and being eaten!
  • 7. How can we tell more of the story?
    In biology, we have a way of looking at more than one food chain at the time. A diagram that has more than one food chain at the same time is called a food web.
    You know what a web looks like. Imagine
    following a line on the web to the
    middle and back. Now, imagine following a
    line around the web on your web worksheet and come back to the starting point.
    There are many starting points, right?
    Now, let’s use this information to look
    at a food web.
  • 8. Ta Da!A Food Web
    How
    Just like you did on the spider
    web, trace one path at a time
    with your finger on your
    worksheet. Start with the
    plant (producer). Follow
    the arrows to figure out who
    gets eaten by whom. Then,
    go back to the producer and
    follow a different path to get to the eagle. Each path is one food chain. How many different food chains can
    you find in this food web?
  • 9. Let’s look at the food web one food chain at the time. Trace each food chain starting on the right side of the food web. Hint: All of the food chains end up at the eagle!Would highlighting them help?
    plant1st levelrabbit2nd leveleagle
    plant1st level bluebird2nd level eagle
    3. plant1st level snail2nd level bluebird3rd leveleagle
    plant1st level caterpillar2nd levelbluebird3rd level eagle
    plant1st level caterpillar2nd levellizard3rd leveleagle
    Trace them again until you are sure you can find all five of the food chains in this food web. After practicing, fill in the worksheet for
    all five food chains that make up this food web.
    Put the producer and each consumer in its place on the worksheet.
  • 10. Congratulations!
    You have completed the Food Web Lesson!
    I’m very proud of you!
  • 11. The End

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