Difference between Food Chain and Food Web

The difference between Food Chain and Food Web:

Let’s talk about the difference between food chain and food web. Food web is the flow of energy and nutrients in a linear pattern while a food chain is just a part of the food web. There are many food chains exist on the food web. suppose, grass is eaten by rabbit, and rabbit eaten by a hawk, this is a food chain.

Difference between Food Chain and Food Web
Food Chain and Food Web

A food web is a large scale energy transmission from one organism to other organisms directly or indirectly. To understand the food web let us again focus on the above scenario of grass to hawk. For instance, grass can be eaten by rabbit, grasshopper, goat, and horses, but if we look closely grasshopper can be eaten by lizard, frog, hen, and many others, further these animals can be eaten bu multiple animals eg: frog can be eaten by snake and hawk.

Let’s look at the summarized and the sequenced difference between food chain and food web:

Food Chain Food Web
1. It is a linear flow of energy from lower to higher trophic levels. It is a system of several food chains connected directly or indirectly in an ecosystem.
2. In this, a specific organism relies on specific other organisms. In this a specific organism has access to several organisms to lower trophic levels.
3. A single organism absent in the chain can damage the whole chain. A single organism absent has no effect on the whole system.
4. It possesses around 4-6 trophic levels. It possesses several trophic levels.
5. The competitiveness and adaptability of the organisms are not affected by the food chain. The competitiveness and adaptability of the organism can be improved by the food web.

Types and examples of food chain?

There are 2 types of food chain exist which are Detritus and Grazing food chain. If we talk about examples of food chain then there are a lot of food chain examples exist. For instance, butterfly sucks nectar from the flower which is then eaten by small birds, and ultimately these small birds get eaten by the fox.

following are some real-life examples of food chain:

  • Grass – Impala – Cheetah – Vulture.
  • Dead plants – Earthworms – Birds – Eagles.
  • Fruits – Monkey – Eagle.
  • Grass – Goat – Maggot – Small Birds.

What are Detritus and Grazing Food Chains?

Detritus food chain includes the flow of energy from dead organic matter to the microorganisms feeding on them and then ultimately to organisms feeding on these microorganisms. The grazing food chain includes the flow of energy from green plants to herbivores and then ultimately to carnivores.

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2 thoughts on “Difference between Food Chain and Food Web

  1. Love reading your posts.

    1. 24hoursofbiology says:

      Thank You so much Daddario 🙂

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