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.Know More
In the underwater ecosystem, plants and animals leave behind valuable nutrients when they die. These nutrients are an important energy source for the entire ecosystem. For the ecosystem to stay healthy, the energy contained in the dead organic matter, called detritus, must be reabsorbed. The decomposition process begins by scavengers known as detrivores, who feed on easily consumable organic matter. Protists, fungi and bacteria then complete the decomposition process by breaking down harder-to-digest materials, such as bones.
Decomposers eventually break down everything they consume into base nutrients and carbon dioxide. The raw nutrients, such as magnesium, nitrogen and phosphorous, are released back into the ecosystem in a form that producers such as oceanic chemosynthetic bacteria can survive on. These bacteria, in turn, are important sources of nutrition for organisms such as clams and mussels. Nutrients released by saprophrotic decomposers also assist in plankton blooming, which is important for the survival of large ocean mammals such as whales.Learn more in Environmental Science
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 >
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 >
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.Full Answer >
There are three main decomposers in the prairie: the dung beetle, carrion beetle and worm. These insects help the prairie ecosystem decompose waste left by plants and animals. They have an important role to play in the ecosystem's food web, according to Nature Works. They recycle the waste from plants and animals into useful chemicals such as carbon and nitrogen, which in turn benefit both the air and soil.Full Answer >