Humus and decomposers
- Mushrooms, tiny insects, ants and beetles and many other microorganisms are found on dead and decaying matters of plants.
Fig. Mushrooms, a beetle
- The organisms feed upon the dead plant and animal tissues and convert them into dark colored substance called humus.
- The microorganisms which convert the dead plants and animals to humus are called decomposers.
Fig. Humus formed by decomposers
- Humus can be found in the forest floor.
- Humus in soil is important because presence of humus ensures that the nutrients of the dead plants and animals are released into the soil.
- In turn, the roots of the living plants again absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Fig. Roots of plants
- Vultures, jackals, insects, feed upon the dead animals in the forest and that is how the nutrients are recycled.
Fig. A vulture, a jackal
- Beetles and grubs feed on the decaying heap of animal dropping and seedlings of herbs and shrubs also sprout.
- The decaying animal dung provides nutrients to the seedlings to grow.
Fig. Cow dung provides nutrition to the plants
- Decomposers help in maintaining the supply of nutrients to the growing plants in the forest and hence the forest is dynamic living entity.