A Thousand Forms of Life
The variety of plant and animals that we see in the sea represent just fraction of the great diversity of life that exist there. Even though the sea is not the richest biological environment, it does contain immense assortment of plant and animal life.
Along with the best known marine animals, there are thousand of other organisms live under the sand of the sea, in the seaweed, inside the hole of rocks, or within the bodies of sea creatures.
The Food Chain
Marine animals, like other living beings must search for food they need to survive in their environment. If we look closely at how one particular sea organism look for food we will discover the beginnings of a sequence known as food chain. Each and every organism animal and plant, forms a link in the chain. In the sea there are thousands of such food chains made up by various species.
The Links in the Chain
In every food chain, we see that the animals have to search for food, since there is no animal that can produce it for itself. We also see that each chain always begin with a green plant.
In chain the producer organism is the plant. The animals making up the rest of the links are called the consumer organisms.
The sea’s main producer organism is phytoplankton. The primary consumers are zooplankton. The secondary are tertiary consumers are invertebrate marine creatures and fish of different sizes, are birds and mammals.
Sardines and anchovies feed on zooplankton. Tuna eat sardines, anchovies, and other species of fish, just like the shark, which also eats tuna. Anchovies, sardines, sharks, and many other fish form part of different chains. For this reason, when fish search for food, they established a wide variety of relationships, creating a real food network.
The remains of creatures sink to the bottom of the sea floor where they are transformed by the bacteria into new matter that will in turn be used as food by phytoplankton. And then the process will start again.
Life in the sea (Click on the picture to view large)
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