Swamps and Such. This video series from WOSU Public Media uses the example of a wetland to explain the structure and functions of ecosystems ...
Swamps and Such
Nature’s Supermarket. Wetlands are highly productive ecosystems. As a measure, consider that most forests produce two grams of carbon per square meter per day. A wetland produces twice as much—four grams of carbon per square meter per day. The forest is akin to a supermarket with empty shelves. In contrast, a wetland would appear to be a well stocked supermarket.
It takes a lot of energy to sustain this production. The energy mostly comes from the sun via photosynthesis. The energy is transferred from the sun to plants then to animals in a complex food chain. Only about 10% of the energy stored and used by one animal is gained by a predator specie. A healthy wetland is a veritable buffet of food choices for the different animals.