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Philippine College of Science and Technology

Nalsian, Calasiao, Pangasinan

A.Y. 2014-2015

Discussant: Rachel D. Calaunan Instructor: Mr. Ramirson E. Benito
Topic: Energy Flow in the Ecosystem

All organisms require energy, for growth, maintenance, reproduction, locomotion, etc. The flow
of energy is the most important factor that controls what kind of organisms live in an ecosystem
and how many organisms the ecosystem can support. Energy can be added, stored, transferred,
and lost in an ecosystem. Energy flow is the transfer of energy from one organism to another in
an ecosystem. Every organism interacts with its ecosystem in two ways:
1. The organism obtains food energy from the ecosystem
2. The organism contributes energy to the ecosystem.

Energy flows through ecosystems in one direction, typically from the Sun, through
photosynthetic organisms including green plants and algae, to herbivores to carnivores and
Ecologists study how energy moves through an ecosystem by assigning organisms in that
ecosystem to a specific level called a trophic level.

3 Ways to Illustrate Energy Flow
1. Food Chain
2. Food Web
3. Energy Pyramid

A food chain indicates the transfer of energy from producers through a series of organisms
which feed upon each other. It shows the path of energy from one organism to the next.

A food web is a series of interrelated food chains which provides a more accurate picture of
the feeding relationships in an ecosystem, as more than one thing will usually eat a
particular species.

An energy pyramid provides a means of describing the feeding and energy relationships
within a food chain or web. Each step of an energy pyramid shows that some energy is
stored in newly made structures of the organism which eats the preceding one. The
pyramid also shows that much of the energy is lost when one organism in a food chain eats
another. Most of this energy which is lost goes into the environment as heat energy. While
a continuous input of energy from sunlight keeps the process going, the height of energy
pyramids (and therefore the length of food chains) is limited by this loss of energy.

As I go over this topic, Ive learned that we all need energy for us to able to function fully
or live in this world. The existence of living world depends upon the flow of energy and
circulation of materials through ecosystem. The energy is required for the performance
of all the life activities. This is the most important point that we should all remember
that ecosystem is dependent upon solar energy flow and finite pools of energy and that
the primary source of energy for ecosystem is sunlight. I also understood about the
dependence of organisms on other organisms. This dependence is basically on food.
Food is the source of energy of all living organisms. I found out that the amount of
useful energy decreases as energy passes through the levels of an ecosystem. Most of it
is lost to the surroundings as thermal energy.

Science and Technology I
Science and Technology Textbook for First Year High School
First Edition, 1989
Reprint Edition 1991, 1994