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El Centro College

ENVR 1401 Online


What Trophic Level Are You?
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Objective
1. Students will discover where their food comes from in nature.
2. Students will demonstrate how nature is connected and dependent on each other.
3. Students will predict how humans impact food webs.

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Please Highlight or type answers in a different color.

Introduction
All of the energy that you use to perform daily tasks like exercising, thinking, and staying warm comes from the food that
you eat. All of the energy in your food comes from the sun. First, plants convert light energy from the sun into chemical
energy through photosynthesis. When animals eat the plants they use the process of cellular respiration to transform this
chemical energy into a form their bodies can use. Animals can also get energy from eating other animals, although much of
the original energy from the sun has already been used up by the animal which is eaten. In this activity you will determine
where you get your food and it turn your energy.

Procedure
1. Create a list of food consumed during one day (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks & beverages).
2. Label each item as from a producer, a primary consumer (e.g., cow), or secondary or higher consumer (e.g., fish).
* If the food item contains both producers and consumers, note both and guess approximately how much of
each it contains.
3. Determine the approximate percentage of food obtained from producers and the approximate percentage of food
obtained from consumers.

Data
Food List Trophic Level
Breakfast:
Milk Primary Consumer
Eggs Primary Consumer
Banana Producer
Coffee Producer

Lunch: Producer
Potato Producer
Lettuce Producer
Rice Producer
Orange Juice

Dinner: Secondary Consumer


Tuna Producer
Soda Producer
Cucumber Producer
Carrots

Snacks: Producer
pecans Producer
cashews Producer
Biscuits
Results

Trophic Level Percentage


Producer 80%
Primary Consumer 13%
Secondary Consumer 7%
Tertiary Consumer 0
Decomposer 0

Conclusions
How much support do you receive from the first trophic level?
12/15 .80 percent

How much from the second trophic level?


2/15 0.13

In which trophic level do you belong? (take into account more than this day)

According to my daily food consumption, I think I belong to the fourth trophic level

If you ate more producers, how would this change the percentage of the biomass pyramid necessary to support your
survival?

If I ate more producers the percentage of the biomass pyramid necessary to support my survival will decrease

If you ate more food from secondary consumers, how would this change the percentage of the biomass pyramid necessary
to support your survival?

If I ate more food from secondary consumers, the percentage of the biomass pyramid necessary to support your survival
will increase