Ecological Pyramid An ecological pyramid is a graphical representation designed to show the number of organisms, energy relationships, and biomass of an ecosystem. Succeeding levels in the pyramid represents the dependence of the organisms at a given level on the organisms at lower levels.
Three Types of Ecological Pyramids Pyramids of Production (Energy) Pyramids of Biomass Pyramids of Numbers
Pyramids of Production Represents the loss of energy with each transfer in a food chain. Pyramids of Production is always upright as the total amount of energy available for utilization in the layers above is less than the energy available in the lower levels. This happens because during energy transfer from lower to higher levels, some energy is always lost.
Pyramids of Biomass Represents the amount of energy contained in a biomass, at different trophic levels for a particular time. Demonstrates the amount of matter lost between trophic levels. Two types of biomass pyramids: upright and inverted.
Pyramids of Numbers Represents the number of organisms in each trophic level. Plot of relationships between the number of herbivores (primary consumers), first level carnivore (secondary consumers), second level carnivore (tertiary consumers) and so forth. Shape varies form ecosystem to ecosystem because the number of organisms at each level is variable.