picture of polar bear in the desert know what you’re imagining is way too cute take off the sunglasses and the swim trunks there he’s hot he’s hungry he’s downright miserable why is he such a grumpy bear well it’s because he’s not where he belongs there aren’t any tasty seals to eat no cold water to enjoy and no snow to sleep in the desert isn’t his habitat you know that a habitat is the area where something lives but from polar bears to porcupines animals don’t just need a place to live they also rely on the other living and nonliving things around them to survive and life looks different in different places around the world so what makes a habitat a home well what do you need I need sandwiches pancakes carrots maybe some nice peaches so I need food and I need water I need a place to live and I need a place to film crash course videos you could say this is my habitat animals need these things to food water shelter and space to live for animals their food comes from their neighbors the other living things in their habitat you know that plants and animals all fall somewhere along the food chain which is a model we use to describe the flow of energy between living things but the real world is made up of lots and lots of food chains and those chains can get kind of messy I mean look at our polar bear sure his favorite food is seal but in a pinch he’ll eat walrus dead whales birds eggs and if he has absolutely no other choice plants the polar bear is at the top of multiple food chains and that’s not unusual most animals don’t just eat one thing and neither do i I’m at the top of the pancake food chain and the carrot food chain it just so happens I prefer pancakes so you can see how food chains are actually all tangled around with each other with many different ones overlapping kind of like a web so we call this a food web food webs are big tangled systems that include every plant and animal in a habitat and as you might guess all food webs are different let’s compare two different habitats to see how the food webs play out hmm first we’ll go back to our old stomping ground the forest let’s begin with you know this people the plants trees grass and other plants that change energy from the Sun into sugar but then you have some animals that eat other animals this is where things get a little more complicated today an owl makes a mouse his lunch but tomorrow it may be a rabbit today a snake snacks on a squirrel but a few days later our our friend might make a meal of another meat-eater like the snake finally the decomposers insects fungi and bacteria are breaking down whatever is left over from uneaten rotten fruit – leftover animal carcasses as they break down matter they provide more nutrients for the plants it’s a bit of a different story up in the Arctic I mean look at all that ice I know what you’re thinking where are the plants how do we have a food web without plants zoom in on the seawater zoom way in further further stop can you see those tiny plants they’re called phytoplankton and just like plants on land they convert energy from the Sun really small creatures called ZOA plankton eat the phytoplankton in all kinds of small fish dying on the ZOA plankton larger fish eat the smaller fish there are big marine mammals – beluga whales eat fish while humpback whales eat the tiny plankton and krill and what else eats fish seals that’s our polar bears favorite food but up here you can’t afford to be picky so we may have to nibble on some whale carcass if necessary as for decomposers there aren’t many bugs or earthworms in this cold climate there are bacteria but since it’s so cold the decomposers break down matter much more slowly than in the forest so you can see food webs and the ecosystems that support them look different in different parts of the world depending on the habitat conditions flat or mountainous land more or less water these seemingly small changes and habitats affect what kind of plants and animals live there up in the Arctic a polar bear has the right conditions to keep him happy first he fits into his food web perfectly the food that’s available to him has enough fat and protein to keep his energy up second he fits into his habitat perfectly he has the body adaptations to not just survive but feel really comfortable in the super cold a polar bear isn’t built to survive in the desert or the forest so let’s put our poor polar bear back where he belongs I was starting to feel bad for the guy Oh