Interdependence of Plants And Animals
What do you eat? Rice, roti, chicken burgers, french fries, orange juice and so many other things. We all know that humans are dependent on plants and animals for various reasons. Plants and animals (humans included) are interdependent on each other for many reasons. In an ecosystem like a forest, the main consequence of this dependence is the food chain. An illustration of a food chain or food web is given below.
Here, plants consume decayed material from the soil for their nourishment and are consumed by plant-eating animals for their survival. The carnivores then consume the lower animals of the food chain for their nutrition and survival. When living organisms perish, they will decompose and form a part of the soil, which can again be consumed by plants. The cycle continues to exist in this way.
Apart from food dependence, there exists a reproductive dependence between plants and animals. For example, bees are the major carriers of pollen which is transferred between flowers. Pollination helps certain kinds of plant to reproduce. The bees also obtain the nectar of flowers as their nourishment thereby establishing a symbiotic relationship within themselves.
Apart from pollination, different animals help in plant reproduction by acting as carriers of seeds. For their survival, it is important that plants grow over a sufficient area. This is because many plants growing in the same region do not get sufficient amount of water, sunlight and nutrients.
The flora in forests also helps establish a protection around animals living within them. This protection is offered both within and outside the ecosystem. For example, trees and large bushes help protect animals from their predators, by providing a camouflage. Animals are also protected to certain degree from outside influences like extreme weather and climates by this. Apart from these, there is also the obvious fact that forests are home to a variety of animals.
Forests are an ecosystem and in all ecosystems, living organisms are dependent on each other for their continued existence. Learn more about different ecosystems and biomes with our tutors here at BYJU’s.