Decomposers in a coniferous forest include fungi, worms, protozoans, nematodes and soil bacteria. Mites and Collembola insects feed on some organic matter, although they are not the primary decomposers.Know More
The two most important decomposers in a coniferous forest are bacteria and fungi. While earthworms do decompose matter, they are more present in deciduous forests because they mainly feed on deciduous leaves, of which there are few in a coniferous forest.
Some insects also help to decompose matter, though they are secondary to bacteria and fungi. Termites, bark beetles, wood borers and ants feed on decomposing matter, but, more importantly, they scatter or fragment this matter around the forest.
Decomposition occurs either in aerobic or anaerobic, oxygen or oxygen-free, environments. In anaerobic environments, bacteria are the main decomposers, because the other decomposers require oxygen. The process usually takes longer with only bacteria to break down the organic matter.
In aerobic environments, oxygen is present, making fungus the primary decomposer. During the decomposition process, the fungus produces cellulase, an enzyme that breaks down organic matter into simpler forms of sugar. Ectomycorrhizal fungi live at the base of certain fir trees and decompose the litter that falls to the ground. Shelf fungus grows on trees and slowly feeds on the living tree, breaking it down into simple organic matter.Learn more about Environmental Science
Decomposers help reclaim carbon from dead organisms and put it back into the carbon cycle so living organisms can use it. Decomposers break down dead plants, animals and waste products. This process releases carbon dioxide through cellular respiration.Full Answer >
The decomposers in an underwater ecosystem are animal-like organisms called protists, fungi and bacteria. Referred to as saprotrophs, these organisms decompose dead matter from higher-level plants and animals, facilitating the re-entry of nutrients into the ecosystem in the form of raw nutrients and carbon dioxide.Full Answer >
Decomposers help the environment by breaking down large organic molecules into forms that other organisms can use, releasing them into the ground, water and air. They can get energy from organic compounds other species cannot. Without decomposers, many of these compounds would remain unusable and would even obstruct new life.Full Answer >
The major decomposers on the African Savannah are the African land snail, the African dung beetle, mushrooms/fungi and bacteria. Decomposers play an important part of the Savannah's ecosystem. They eat dead and decaying organic matter such as grass and animal carcasses, and the matter is digested and released back into the soil where it fertilizes new plants.Full Answer >