Reproductive Products in Marine Food Webs
Isaacs, John D.
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The role of gametes and reproductive products such as sperm, eggs and seeds will be generally discussed as a part of the food flux in terrestrial and marine food webs. Particularly important is the opposed role of reproductive products in these two realms, constituting an "upward" flux (i.e., from the lower developed forms to the more highly developed) on land, and a "downward" flux at sea. In the sea this flux undoubtedly constrains development of higher trophic levels and mature forms. It is an important component of the homogenizing and smoothing processes affecting marine food webs, and the development of a trophic system dominated by immature creatures.