What Are the Primary Consumers Within a Tropical Forest?
The primary consumers within a tropical forest are mainly herbivores like monkeys, bats, deer, rabbits; and also squirrels, parrots and chipmunks. Being primary consumers, they eat producers. Producers use water, carbon dioxide and sunlight to perform photosynthesis and produce their own food.
Producers give energy for animals. Producers are the most in number compared to other living things because they are at the food chain's bottom. Plants are classified as producers.
In a tropical rain forest, there are a few layers: forest floor, understory, canopy and emergent. There are hardly any producers in the forest floor. Instead, there are detrivores and decomposers like bacteria, fungi and mushrooms. Flowering plants, small trees, vines and epiphytes are the producers in the understory layer. Producers, like canopy trees that bear fruits, can be found in the canopy layer.
Examples of secondary consumers, which eat primary consumers, are reptiles, spiders, birds and amphibians. Tertiary consumers are at the uppermost food chain in a tropical forest. They eat primary and secondary consumers and are classified as carnivores. Examples of tertiary consumers are owls, fox, eagles and coyotes. A tropical forest is normally found between the Earth's latitudes of 30 degrees north to 30 degrees south. Covering at least 6 to 7 percent of Earth's land area, tropical forests are warm throughout the year with ample rain for lush plant growth.