Energy flow in deciduous forest Maple tree (P) Oak tree (P) Barred owl (C)
Wood bearing beetle (C) (C) White tailed deer
Red squirrel (C)
Wood pecker (C)
(C) Wood land vole (C) garter snake
Long tailed weasel (C)
Service berry (P) Fungi, Bacteria (D)
Organisms found in the ecosystem:
White tailed deer, long tailed weasel, red squirrel, wood frog, garter snake, newt, woodland vole, ground and wood bearing beetle, barred owl, golden crowned knight, wood pecker, chipmunks, .mice, snakes, black bear, .rabbits, .hares, bobcats, .fox, .coyote, .fisher, and skunk.
The barred owl is well adapted for the deciduous forest. The two main organs that are involved include firstly. the eyes. Their eyes are set forward on their heads, are large and extremely sensitive to light. This enables them to see in the dark. Secondly. their wings consist of fringed flight feathers thus allowing them to fly quietly and enabling them to hunt.
The red squirrel is also well adapted. Firstly, the skin is adapted well for camouflage and protection from the predators. Secondly, their eyes are sensitive to such an extent that they have clear vision in the night and thus can hunt for food.
There are two main types of consumers:
Primary consumers in the deciduous forest ecosystem
Woodland vole, red squirrel, white tailed deer and wood boring beetle
Secondary consumers in the deciduous forest ecosystem
Garter snake, long tailed squirrel, wood pecker and barred owl
Food chains in the deciduous forest ecosystem
1. The woodland vole eats the oak tree and is eaten by the garter snake
The wood land vole adapts to the changing climate of the deciduous forest via their ability to hibernate. The rodent builds a furrow and enters into a state of dormancy during harsh climates and decreases its metabolic rate and finally coming out of the hibernacula at the time of spring.
2. The wood bearing beetle eats the oak tree and is eaten by the wood pecker which is eaten by the barred owl
3. The maple tree is eaten by the woodland vole which in turn is eaten by the weasel which in turn is eaten by the barred owl
The weasels are mainly adapted in the ecosystem through their ability change fur color via molting. During molting the weasel sheds the existing layer of fur and slowly alters it to a color that fits the environment. This adaptation makes these organisms successful predators particularly with their ability to blend into the pure white snow
Almost all deciduous forests have been a subject to human impact. Due to changes in the atmosphere chemistry, indirect elevation of CO2 has shifted the forest productivity as well as the composition of the forest species has been shifted. A greater factor affecting the population of animal species in the ecosystem is the raised levels of nitrogen deposition. This could have an impact on the specie population within the habitat, litter quality and nutrient mass cycling rates. The major hazard caused by human population is the deforestation. This affects the climate of the ecosystem and is observed to cause changes in the evaporation rate as well as the precipitation rate.  .In those areas where evaporation increases more than precipitation, soil will tend to become drier, the lake levels will drop, and the rivers will carry less water. Other threats involve the air pollution, global warming and human development. Regarding the population growth of the ecosystem is concerned. the biotic potential can produce an exponential growth. However, this exponential role cannot be continued indefinitely and will be affected by certain factors. The population regulation within the ecosystem is done mainly by environmental resistance as well as through the competition for resources. Furthermore, density-Independent Factors tend to limit Populations regardless of their density while the Density-Dependent factors tend to become more effective as population density increases and lastly, the predators and parasites are seen to exert density-dependent controls on populations within the deciduous forest (Audesirk &. Audesirk, 2005).
Amsel, Sheri (2014), “Forests of the World.” Deciduous Forests. Exploring Nature Educational Resource. © 2005 – 2014. June 22, 2014. http://exploringnature.org/db/detail.php?dbID=44&.detID=573
Lee.F &. Peter.B, (2002), Temperate Deciduous Forests, Volume 2, The Earth system: biological and ecological dimensions of global environmental change, pp 565–569, John Wiley &. Sons, Ltd, Chichester, 2002
Audesirk, T., &. Audesirk, G. (2005). .Biology: Life on earth. New Jersey: Pearson.