Food Webs

A food web is a more complex and interlinked network of feeding relationships within an ecosystem. It is different to a food chain, which is a sequence that shows the feeding relationships of organisms in an ecosystem.

A food web is made up of multiple food chains that are interconnected. This makes ecosystems less vulnerable to changes in the environment.

If a single species were to disappear from a food chain, it would not necessarily ruin the entire chain. This is because the remaining species in the chain may be able to find alternative food sources within the food web. However, the loss of a species can still have an impact on the rest of the ecosystem.

As you can see, some organisms in a food chain have multiple predators that rely on them for food. For example, the rat is prey to several different species, including the:

  • Ringtail
  • Whiptail
  • Jackrabbit
  • Pine Marten

If the population of an organism decreases, it can impact the predator species that rely on it for food. However, if the predator species is able to find alternative food sources, it may be able to survive and maintain its population. This is one of the ways that ecosystems are able to maintain balance.