Decay of Biomass Notes

Decay of Biomass Notes Card
Directions: Use the “Decay of Biomass” article to answer each question on the notes card
below. In each box, answer the question in complete sentences and draw a picture.
Decay of Biomass Notes Card
What is Biomass?
Why must biomass decay?
Biomass is the amount of living matter in a
After a living organism dies, its body must
given area. It includes all of the plants and
decay in order to be recycled back into the
animals on Earth.
What breaks down dead organisms?
Dead organisms are broken down by
What are the steps?
Decomposers feed on and break down dead
plants and animals. They make nutrients
that were stored in biomass available to
other living things.
What are the most common decomposers?
The most common decomposers are
earthworms, bacteria, and fungi.
How does Biomass Decay?
When a plan or animals dies, decomposers
break down the dead organisms to obtain
What is used and produced in the process?
The process uses oxygen and produces
carbon dioxide, water, minerals, organic
compounds and heat, which are returned to
the soil to be used by other organisms.
Why is Decay Important?
Decay produces nitrogen, which is essential
to the growth of plants.
What is Compost?
Compost is a mixture of decaying organic
matter, such as leaves and manure, which
can be used to improve soil quality.