Q:

What are the decomposers in the South African Savannah?

A:

Quick 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.

Know More
What are the decomposers in the South African Savannah?
Credit: Sven Zacek Oxford Scientific Getty Images

Full Answer

Ecosystems are large, interdependent networks of living organisms that begin with producers (plants) that create their own energy. Next are primary consumers (herbivores) that feed on plants, and secondary consumers (carnivores) that feed on herbivores. Decomposers are the last link in this chain and, in some ways, the most important. Without them, the dead and decaying matter produced by primary and secondary consumers would be trapped in unusable organic forms and gradually increase until it overwhelmed the environment and the ecosystem collapsed.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the decomposers in the underwater ecosystem?

    A:

    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 >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the role of decomposers in the carbon cycle?

    A:

    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 >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do decomposers help the environment?

    A:

    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 >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a South African mastiff?

    A:

    The South African mastiff, also known as a Boerboel, is bred as a nonaggressive guard dog. Even-tempered, affectionate and obedient, the Boerboel originally hunted big game but has more recently served exclusively as a family pet. The breed is known to be gentle with children despite its large size.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore