+
Energy Pyramids
Next Generation: MS.LS1.6 HS.LS2.4 NGSS NGSS

Energy Pyramids

Author: Nathan Lampson
Description:
This lesson will introduce energy pyramids, and show how energy moves from one trophic level to the next.
(more)
See More
Try a College Course Free

Sophia’s self-paced online courses are a great way to save time and money as you earn credits eligible for transfer to over 2,000 colleges and universities.*

Begin Free Trial
No credit card required

25 Sophia partners guarantee credit transfer.

221 Institutions have accepted or given pre-approval for credit transfer.

* The American Council on Education's College Credit Recommendation Service (ACE Credit®) has evaluated and recommended college credit for 20 of Sophia’s online courses. More than 2,000 colleges and universities consider ACE CREDIT recommendations in determining the applicability to their course and degree programs.

Tutorial

 

Energy pyramids are visual ways to represent the flow of energy through a food web.  With the energy pyramid, energy is produced at the base of the energy pyramid by producer organisms.  The different energy levels within the energy pyramid are known as trophic levels.

 

Producers (1st trophic level): 

Producers are organisms that are able to utilize sunlight in order to produce energy.  Producers produce all of the worlds biomass.  Biomass is organic material that contains energy from the sun.

Example: Grass

 

Primary Consumers(2nd trophic level):

Primary consumers are organisms that consume producers for energy.  Primary consumers are typically herbivores.

Example: Grasshopper (consumes grass)

 

Secondary Consumers(3rd trophic level):

Secondary consumers are organisms that consume primary consumers for energy.  Secondary consumers can be either carnivores or omnivores.

Example: Bird (consumes grasshoppers)

 

Tertiary Consumers(4th trophic level):

Tertiary consumers are organisms that consume secondary consumers for energy.  Tertiary consumers can be either carnivores or omnivores.

Example: Fox (consumes birds)