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Define top carnivore.

Last updated date: 22nd Jul 2024
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Hint:Certain animals like lion, leopards, cheetah, hyena etc are called the top carnivore. They are the apex predators. They constitute the fourth trophic level.

Complete Answer:
Top predators are the animals which occupy the highest level in the food chain or food pyramid. They eat other animals but are not eaten by other animals. They are also known as secondary consumers or the apex predators. For example cheetah, tiger, lion they eat small animals but are not eaten up by any natural predator.
The apex predators or top carnivores play an important role in maintaining the natural ecological balance.
>Effect on community- Top carnivores exerts the top-down control over the other members of the community.
>Effect on ecosystem- They control the prey density and restrict the smaller predators and self regulate the system. They control the diseases and help in maintaining biodiversity.
Conservational effect- Top carnivores are powerful on other predators. This is the reason they are important for conservation of nature.
>Interactions with Humans-
->Humans hunt several apex predators for their valuable products and also for recreation.
->Ecotourism attracts humans or tourists by showing them the apex predators like tigers, crocodiles. ->They attract the apex predators by providing them food. This in turn harms the predators.

Note: Humans are mostly hunting the apex predators due to which they are increasingly threatened. Also the climacteric changes have an effect on their extinction. This is disturbing the food chain as a whole.