autotroph

Encyclopedic entry. An autotroph is an organism that can develop its very own food making use of light, water, carbon dioxide, or other chemicals. Since autotrophs produce their very own food, they space sometimes referred to as producers.

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An autotroph is one organism the can develop its own food using light, water, carbon dioxide, or other chemicals. Since autotrophs develop their very own food, they are sometimes dubbed producers.Plants room the many familiar kind of autotroph, however there are many different kinds of autotrophic organisms. Algae, i beg your pardon live in water and whose larger creates are recognized as seaweed, is autotrophic. Phytoplankton, tiny organisms that live in the ocean, room autotrophs. Some varieties of bacteria room autotrophs. Many autotrophs usage a procedure called photosynthesis to do their food. In photosynthesis, autotrophs use power from the sunlight to transform water indigenous the soil and also carbon dioxide indigenous the air right into a nutrient referred to as glucose. Glucose is a form of sugar. The glucose provides plants energy. Plants also use glucose to make cellulose, a substance they usage to grow and also build cell walls.All tree with eco-friendly leaves, indigenous the tiniest mosses to towering fir trees, synthesize, or create, their own food with photosynthesis. Algae, phytoplankton, and also some bacteria likewise perform photosynthesis.Some rare autotrophs produce food through a procedure called chemosynthesis, rather than through photosynthesis. Autotrophs that carry out chemosynthesis perform not use power from the sunlight to produce food. Instead, they make food using energy from chemistry reactions, frequently combining hydrogen sulfide or methane v oxygen. Organisms that usage chemosynthesis live in excessive environments, wherein the toxic chemicals necessary for oxidation space found. Because that example, bacteria living in active volcanoes oxidation sulfur to create their very own food. In ~ Yellowstone national Park in the U.S. Claims of Wyoming, Idaho, and also Montana, bacteria qualified of chemosynthesis have been discovered in hot springs.Bacteria that live in the deep ocean, near hydrothermal vents, additionally produce food with chemosynthesis. A hydrothermal vent is a small crack in the seafloor. Seawater look down v the crack into hot, partially melted absent below. The boiling-hot water climate circulates ago up into the ocean, loaded with minerals from the hot rock. This minerals encompass hydrogen sulfide, which the bacteria use in chemosynthesis. Autotrophic bacteria that produce food v chemosynthesis have likewise been uncovered at places on the seafloor dubbed cold seeps. At cold seeps, hydrogen sulfide and methane seep increase from beneath the seafloor and mix with the ocean water and also dissolved carbon dioxide. The autotrophic bacteria oxidize these chemicals to develop energy.

Autotrophs in the Food ChainTo explain a food chain—a description of which organisms eat which various other organisms in the wild—scientists team organisms into trophic, or nutritional, levels. There space three trophic levels. Due to the fact that autotrophs execute not consume other organisms, they space the first trophic level. Autotrophs are consumed by herbivores, organisms the consume plants. Herbivores room the 2nd trophic level. Carnivores, creatures the eat meat, and also omnivores, creatures that eat all types of organisms, are the 3rd trophic level. Herbivores, carnivores, and also omnivores room all consumers—they consume nutrients fairly than making your own. Herbivores are major consumers. Carnivores and omnivores are an additional consumers.All food chains begin with some type of autotroph (producer). For example, autotrophs such together grasses grow in the Rocky Mountains. Mule deer space herbivores (primary consumers), which feeding on the autotrophic grasses. Carnivores (secondary consumers) together as mountain lions hunt and consume the deer.In hydrothermal vents, the food chain’s producer is autotrophic bacteria. Main consumers such as snails and mussels consume the autotrophs. Carnivores such as octopus consume the snails and also mussels.An boost in the number of autotrophs will typically lead to an increase in the variety of animals that eat them. However, a to decrease in the number and variety of autotrophs in one area have the right to devastate the entire food chain. If a wooded area burns in a forest fire or is clearing to develop a purchase mall, herbivores such together rabbits have the right to no longer discover food. Several of the rabbits might move come a better habitat, and also some may die. Without the rabbits, foxes and other meat-eaters that feed ~ above them also lose their food source. They, too, must relocate to survive.


Vocabulary

Term part of Speech an interpretation

algae

plural noun

(singular: alga) varied group the aquatic organisms, the largest of which room seaweeds.

autotroph

noun

organism the can produce its very own food and nutrients from chemicals in the atmosphere, usually v photosynthesis or chemosynthesis.

bacteria

plural noun

(singular: bacterium) single-celled organisms found in every ecosystem on Earth.

carbon dioxide

noun

greenhouse gas created by animals during respiration and also used by plants during photosynthesis. Carbon dioxide is additionally the byproduct of burning fossil fuels.

carnivore

noun

organism that eats meat.

cellulose

noun

complex carbohydrate that develops the tough, rigid cell wall of most plants and is crucial for such assets as file and textiles.

cell wall

noun

tough, rigid, and also non-living barrier surrounding the soft cell of most autotrophs, such together plants.

chemosynthesis

noun

process by which some microbes revolve carbon dioxide and also water into carbohydrates utilizing energy derived from inorganic chemical reactions.

circulate

verb

to relocate around, frequently in a pattern.

cold seep

noun

marine atmosphere where hydrogen sulfide and methane seep increase from in ~ the seafloor and mix with the s water.

consume

verb

to use up.

consumer

noun

organism top top the food chain that counts on autotrophs (producers) or other consumers because that food, nutrition, and also energy.

convert

verb

to readjust from one thing to another.

decrease

verb

to lower.

devastate

verb

to destroy.

energy

noun

capacity to do work.

fir

noun

variety of pine tree.

food

noun

material, generally of tree or pet origin, the living organisms use to obtain nutrients.

food chain

noun

group of organisms connected in stimulate of the food lock eat, from producer to consumers, and also from prey, predators, scavengers, and also decomposers.

forest

noun

ecosystem filled through trees and also underbrush.

fox

noun

type the mammal regarded a dog with a thin muzzle and thick tail.

glucose

noun

"simple sugar" chemical developed by many plants during photosynthesis.

grass

noun

type that plant with narrow leaves.

habitat

noun

environment wherein an organism lives throughout the year or for shorter periods that time.

herbivore

noun

organism that eats greatly plants and other producers.

hot spring

noun

small circulation of water flowing naturally from an secret water resource heated by hot or molten rock.

hydrogen sulfide

noun

chemical compound gas responsible because that the foul smell of rotten eggs.

hydrothermal

adjective

related to hot water, especially water boil by the Earth"s inner temperature.

increase

verb

to add or become larger.

methane

noun

chemical compound that is the an easy ingredient of herbal gas.

mineral

noun

inorganic product that has actually a characteristic chemical composition and specific crystal structure.

moss

noun

tiny plant usually discovered in moist, shady areas.

mountain lion

noun

large cat native to North and also South America. Additionally called a cougar, puma, catamount, and also panther.

mule deer

noun

large deer (mammal) with lengthy ears native to phibìc America.

mussel

noun

aquatic pet with two shells that can open and also close for food or defense.

nutrient

noun

substance an organism demands for energy, growth, and also life.

octopus

noun

marine animal (mollusk) through a soft body and eight arms.

omnivore

noun

organism that eats a variety of organisms, including plants, animals, and fungi.

organism

noun

living or once-living thing.

oxidation

noun

chemical process of a substance combining with oxygen to change the substance"s physical and molecular structure.

photosynthesis

noun

process through which plants rotate water, sunlight, and carbon dioxide right into water, oxygen, and an easy sugars.

phytoplankton

noun

microscopic organism that stays in the ocean and also can transform light energy to chemical power through photosynthesis.

plant

noun

organism the produces its own food v photosynthesis and also whose cells have actually walls.

primary consumer

noun

organism that eats producers; herbivores.

producer

noun

organism on the food chain that can create its very own energy and nutrients. Also called one autotroph.

rabbit

noun

mammal with long ears that hops on strong hind legs.

Rocky Mountains

noun

mountain variety in the western unified States and also Canada.

seafloor

noun

surface class of the bottom the the ocean.

seaweed

noun

marine algae. Seaweed can be created of brown, green, or red algae, as well as "blue-green algae," i beg your pardon is actually bacteria.

secondary consumer

noun

organism that eats meat.

seep

verb

to slowly circulation through a border.

shrub

noun

type of plant, smaller sized than a tree but having woody branches.

snail

noun

marine or terrestrial animal (mollusk) with a shell and also one foot top top which the glides.

soil

noun

top layer of the Earth"s surface ar where plants deserve to grow.

sugar

noun

type of chemistry compound that is sweet-tasting and also in some form essential come life.

sulfur

noun

chemical element with the prize S.

toxic

adjective

poisonous.

trophic level

noun

one of three positions top top the food chain: autotrophs (first), herbivores (second), and also carnivores and also omnivores (third).

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volcano

noun

an opening in the Earth"s crust, v which lava, ash, and also gases erupt, and also the cone constructed by eruptions.