What is a Food Chain, Predator & Prey Relationship?


What is a Food Chain? To obtain food, living things depend on one another. Plants make food with the help of sunlight and water. The animals which eat plants are called herbivores. Rabbit, goat, deer and cow are examples of herbivores. The animals which eat other animals are called carnivores. Lion, tiger, crocodile and shark are examples of carnivores.

The animals which eat both plants and animals are called omnivores for example man, bear, birds, and crow etc.

Food Chain

Producers make food, which is used by herbivores. The herbivores are eaten by carnivores. These carnivores may be eaten by other carnivores. The series of eating and being eaten in an ecosystem is called a food chain. Grasshopper eats a plant and is eaten by a rat. The rat becomes a prey of an owl. This is an example of a food chain.

A food chain consists of three links:

  • In any food chain the first living thing is a producer for example plant and algae.
  • The second main link is the herbivore or omnivore animals for example zebra, goat.
  • The third main link is the carnivore or omnivore animals for example snake, lion and fox.

Predator – Prey Relationship

The animal which eats by killing another living thing is called a predator . for example lion, tiger, shark and lizard. The living thing which is killed and eaten by the predator is called a prey, for example zebra, deer, rat and fish. The relationship between predator and prey is called predation. For example, a deer is killed and eaten by a lion. Here, the lion is the predator and deer is its prey. Similarly, goat is a predator and grass is its prey.

Predator – Prey Relationship

Competition among Organisms

All the organisms living in an ecosystem depend on the resources which are available in that area. Every area can provide food and place to a limited number of living things. Due to limited resources In an ecosystem, the living things compete with each other for food and place. For example, in the grassland all the herbivore compete for grass.

Competition among Organisms

The animals which live in a grassland must be very alert and fast runners to survive in that environment. Why?

Impact of human actions on food chain in an ecosystem

In the ancient times, human actions had little impact on the environment. Now a days, there are very visible impacts of human beings on the environment. After the increase in the population, humans established cities. For this purpose, they cut forests, built roads and made factories. These actions polluted the environment and water resources. Human beings did irreversible damage to the ecosystem of land and ocean animals. The cutting of forests destroyed the habitats of wildlife. Human beings also started unnecessary hunting of animals. Because of .all such activities of human beings, many wild organisms have become extinct and many others have become endangered.

What is the difference between the food chain and food web?

A food chain is a collection of paths that animals follow to find food. However, the food web is a network of plants and animals that connects them. Therefore, a food web comprises several food chains. An organism consumes one item in a food chain. An organism can consume multiple items. There are many items in a food chain. There is no one path to energy flow. In a food web, there are many paths energy flow paths.


Understanding food chains are vital as they explain the intimate—relationships in an ecosystem. The food chain illustrates how each living thing is connected. The organism is dependent upon other organisms to survive. Food chain This article explains how energy flows within an ecosystem.


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