Homework Help

What is biomass, and what happens to it when you move from one trophic level to the next?

user profile pic

lisamueller | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted November 11, 2011 at 10:58 AM via web

dislike 0 like
What is biomass, and what happens to it when you move from one trophic level to the next?

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

kapokkid | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 11, 2011 at 11:24 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

Biomass is biological material produced by plants living or deceased.  It is often called biomass in a way of referencing it as a fuel.  But as it relates to trophic levels, it changes forms.  It can begin as wood or plant matter, wood chips or green plant waste.

As biomass moves up a trophic level, it is generally consumed and turned into energy or fuel for the consuming organism.  As an example, grasses are biomass and are consumed by herbivores which turn it into fuel and other materials used in their bodies.  They are then consumed by predators that do the same thing with the energy and materials originally produced by the plants.

Sources:

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes