trophic level


Definition of trophic level

: one of the hierarchical strata of a food web characterized by organisms which are the same number of steps removed from the primary producers

Examples of trophic level in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web What’s useful to Fleming is that these elements can act as tracers of different aspects of the environment, including, for a migrating whale, its geographic location and the trophic level (position in the food web) of what the whale has been eating. Jennifer S. Holland, Smithsonian, "A Whale’s Baleen Bristles Reveal the Story of Its Life," 1 Sep. 2017 This indicated that the birds’ food chain had become shorter; somewhere in the birds’ food chain, animals were eating at a lower trophic level. Wendy Mitman Clarke, Smithsonian, "Bones of the Hawaiian Petrel Open Up a Window Into the Birds’ Changing Diet," 26 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trophic level.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of trophic level

1942, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of trophic level was in 1942

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Cite this Entry

“Trophic level.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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