A food web is made up of interconnected food chains. Most communities include various
populations of producer organisms which are eaten by any number of consumer
populations. The green crab, for example, is a consumer as well as a decomposer. The
crab will eat dead things or living things if it can catch them. A secondary consumer may
also eat any number of primary consumers or producers. This non-linear set of
interactions which shows the complex flow of energy in nature is more easily visualized
in the following diagram.
In a food web nutrients are recycled in the end by decomposers. Animals like shrimp and
crabs can break the materials down to detritus. Then bacteria reduce the detritus to
nutrients. Decomposers work at every level, setting free nutrients that form an essential
part of the total food web.
See what is Food Web