Carbon cycle

The carbon cycle highlights how carbon moves from one organism in different forms

carbon cycle

1 – carbon is present in the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide enters the atmosphere when organisms respire and release carbon dioxide

2 – Producers take up carbon in the form of carbon dioxide through the process of photosynthesis. The carbon is then stored in the plant in the form of glucose or other carbon based molecules such as protein or fats

3– once the produces are eaten by the consumers the carbon stored in the producers in the form of glucose

4 – the consumers will die and are then decomposed by decomposers. This process is known as decay, which will occur faster in warmer and moist conditions and slower in cooler dry conditions

5 – the decomposers then respire and release carbon in the form of carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere



Decay is the process of recycling the elements back to the start of the food chain. As all living things are made of materials such as carbon, oxygen, nitrogen. These molecules are then converted into other molecules for storage

Before the organisms die, these materials are then returned through waste products, which are broken down by microorganisms.

Microorganism also breaks down organisms, when they die therefore ensuring all the molecules return back either into the soil or into the air

Microorganisms also work best when the conditions are warm and moist, as the enzymes work quicker in hotter conditions and the moist environment provides the organisms with the nutrients to survive.

All the important elements such as carbon are recycled so they can be put back into the soil and be used by plants and enter the food chain again

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