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Flashcards in Nutrient Cycle Deck (4)
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1

What does the decomposition process release?

Inorganic nutrients like carbon and nitrogen for nutrient cycling.

2

What is a use of a decomposer?

Used in sewage treatment plant to decompose wastes into harmless substances.

3

Describe the nitrogen cycle within the ecosystem.

Since plants cannot use nitrogen gas to make organic compounds, it has to be changed into nitrate. The process is called nitrogen fixation and is carried out by nitrogen-fixing bacteria. When organisms die, decomposers break down their remains and release nitrogen in the form of ammonium ions in the process called ammonification. Nitrification changes ammonium ions into nitrates and nitrites with nitrifying bacteria. However, denitrifying bacteria would convert nitrates back to nitrogen gas via denitrification, where it can continue the nitrogen cycle.

4

What are decomposers?

They are organisms that obtain energy by breaking down complex nutrients in dead organisms, faeces and excretory products of plants and animals.